Old 04-26-2015, 12:04 AM   #1
fundorin
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Default MIDI Feedback from Reaper to Novation SL MK II

I've been using Novation SL Remote 25 for four years and never been able to achieve a fully customizable experience out of it.
Recently I've bought myself Novation 61 SL MK II and now I'm trying to beat this two controllers, so they would do the things that I want.
Automap's HUI support for Reaper is awful. You can only get some predefined transports controls (no FFwd or Rwd) and a several pages of mixer control with faders (vol), encoders (pan) and buttons for arm, solo and mute. All other controls are unavaliable to map via Automap interface.
I'm aware about Padre's CSurf plugin existence and he did a great work, but still, I didn't like any of the templates that come with it. The options to customize them are also very low. So, I want my own templates and I want to get rid of the Automap.
Of cause, you can fully customize your SL controller in so called "Advanced mode", but you won't get LEDs and LCD feedback from DAW by using any advanced mode factory templates or templates that are made by user with MK II Template Editor.
There's one exception from this rule. You can control LEDs by MIDI while SL is in Ableton template. You'll get "Ableton is offline" message on LCD, but if you'll send CC40 message with 1 or 0, you can light the LED of the particular button, which is sitting under the first fader, for example.
I've been able to light up any LED on my MK II, even LED rings around the encoders. There are two ways how those rings will react:
1. CC message value from 0 to 10 lights the ring from left to right
2. CC message value 5 to 1 lights ring to the left from the center and 5 to 9 lights led to the right from the center.
It's also possible to light row select buttons (located to the left) via separate messages or by sending CC96 with values from 1 to 31.

For now, this is where I stuck and need your help.

First of all, I want to describe the idea:
1. SL MK II sends MIDI data to OSCII-Bot.
2. OSCII-Bot converts MIDI data to OSC commands and sends them to Reaper's Control Surface plugin (Open Sound Control).
3. Reaper reacts and sends OSC feedback to OSCII-Bot via CSurf plugin.
4. OSCII-Bot converts OSC feedback from Reaper to MIDI CC commands that would light up the corresponding LEDs on MK II.

So user can only write a script for OSCII-Bot, in which he'll describe, how should Reaper react on MIDI data from MK II.
That's the idea for now. If it'll work, then the next thing'll be adding LCD feedback support. This method can also be extended to other Novation's controllers, such as Impulse or Nocturn.

Now, I have some issues.

First is that I need to modify a custom .syx template, made with Template Editor, using some data header from Ableton's .syx template, so that the custom template's LEDs could be controlled by host, like in Ableton template and the LCD won't show error message.
I have no idea how to do this. I'm not a programmer myself, so the only thing I've noticed is the the header from Ableton's .syx template is different from every other .syx templates (FL Studio, Access Virus and so on).
I think that someone could write and alternative editor for .syx templates of just find, which SYSEX messages are used to enable LED feedback to the controller. Then we can use it to make custom templates for our controllers.

Since .syx template is a plain SYSEX commands, this task shouldn't be hard for an experienced programmer, which I'm not.

After that, user can upload modified .syx template to the controller via MIDI cable or via USB (using Template Editor) and be able to make bi-directional Controller<MIDI>OSCII-Bot<OSC>Reaper chain.

With a proper OSCII-Bot script, user can make himself a multi-paged layouts to control Reaper's transport, mixer, VST's and any other actions avaliable in Reaper. The script can also have a SHIFT buttons to expand avaliable controls and have many other features.

So, here's the idea. What do you think about it? Is it possible to achieve what I want, using SL MK II, Reaper and OSCII-Bot? Any comments will be appreciated.

P.S. English isn't my native language, so I apologize for any stylistic or spelling mistakes.

UPD. Here we have an initial version of Moss's Transformator. A powerful tool for all Novation Remote controllers to use them as a control surface for Reaper. http://mossgrabers.de/Software/Reape...atorRemote.zip

Last edited by fundorin; 05-09-2015 at 08:44 AM. Reason: added link to the first version of Moss's Transformator
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Old 04-26-2015, 07:45 AM   #2
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So, here's the idea. What do you think about it? Is it possible to achieve what I want, using SL MK II, Reaper and OSCII-Bot?
Yes, your basic idea is completely valid - you can create a pretty powerful and heavily customized configuration using REAPER's OSC Control Surface feature coupled with an OSCII-bot script. As you wrote, the (only) technical hurdle seems to be configuring the SL MK II to display feedback on the LEDs and LCD. The rest is just trial, error, and coffee.

Btw, thumbs up for your ambition. I might add that even if you somehow would not get the feedback to the LEDs and LCD working, that would of course be a bummer, but it may still be worth the effort to create a custom setup even without feedback.
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I think that someone could write and alternative editor for .syx templates of just find, which SYSEX messages are used to enable LED feedback to the controller. Then we can use it to make custom templates for our controllers.

Since .syx template is a plain SYSEX commands, this task shouldn't be hard for an experienced programmer, which I'm not.
Well, here's the thing: SysEx messages may be readable as raw data, but what "plain commands" they represent is entirely up to the manufacturer, and not necessarily publicly documented. If they're not publicly documented, we have to either ask the manufacturer for more specifics (you could certainly try asking Novation for this), or try to reverse engineer them ourselves.

I would suggest to load some templates (including that Ableton template) into the template editor application, and start changing things one step at a time (e.g. change one controller from type 'Disabled' to type 'CC'; change its CC number; change its MIDI channel; change its default value; change its minimum value, etc.), incrementally saving the .sysex file at each step, and carefully analyzing which byte(s) change as a result of each edit. That should probably give you some clues about the structure of the .sysex file. Next, when you're somewhat confident that you've identified what parts of the SysEx message represent the configuration of (a range of) individual controllers, you can try copy/pasting entire sections into that Ableton template, to adjust the configuration to your preferences, while (hopefully) leaving the part intact that (according to your earlier analysis) seems to be responsible for the LED (and LCD) feedback functionality.

I've had a quick look at a few .sysex files created in the template editor app, and this approach seems to be feasible - much of the data is complete gibberish to me, but the configuration of individual control elements is easy enough to identify. Btw, is the .sysex file for that Ableton template (and perhaps some others, such as the Access Virus one, for comparison) available somewhere, so I can also take a look?

(I think you already know this, since you mention noticing a difference in the file headers, but perhaps it's useful for others who read this: )
There are various applications that can show you the individual bytes of SysEx files; on OS X I like to use SysEx Librarian (a simple but handy tool focused on SysEx messages), and 0xED (a more generic binary file viewer / editor) for more advanced tasks like search/replace in .sysex files.

Hope this helps!
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Old 04-26-2015, 09:32 AM   #3
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Yes, your basic idea is completely valid - you can create a pretty powerful and heavily customized configuration using REAPER's OSC Control Surface feature coupled with an OSCII-bot script. As you wrote, the (only) technical hurdle seems to be configuring the SL MK II to display feedback on the LEDs and LCD. The rest is just trial, error, and coffee.
Gladly, I've found a full programming reference for both feedback and CC layout for SLMkII, a couple hours ago. Here's the link to the PDF file. I've also asked Novation support for three more documents, which are mentioned in this PDF. Here's the link to my public Dropbox. For those could be reading this thread years later, the name of the file is "SLMKII MIDI Programmers Reference.pdf"
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/...0Reference.pdf

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Btw, is the .sysex file for that Ableton template (and perhaps some others, such as the Access Virus one, for comparison) available somewhere, so I can also take a look?
I've dumped all templates from my MkII and packed them into a single archive. There's also a template 33 - Automap Universal, which is used for automap things and can't be dumped separately, but it dumped when I've tried to dump all templates at once. So, there are 33 templates in this archive, in total.
I can do the same with my Remote SL 25, if needed.
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/..._Templates.zip

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(I think you already know this, since you mention noticing a difference in the file headers, but perhaps it's useful for others who read this: )
There are various applications that can show you the individual bytes of SysEx files; on OS X I like to use SysEx Librarian (a simple but handy tool focused on SysEx messages), and 0xED (a more generic binary file viewer / editor) for more advanced tasks like search/replace in .sysex files.
I've used a simple text viewer (win 8.1 here) to look at the .syx, but the way it's showing me the content isn't very readable.

In fact, I'm really glad that you said, that this concept is doable. Might take a long time, but I'm willing to complete this task, so the others could also use the setup for their own SL's.
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Old 04-26-2015, 09:59 AM   #4
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I've also found a control surface daemon for SL controllers, which is, basically, a self-written Automap substitute for Linux.
It was madу by a guy, named David Greaves. Here's an article about his work - http://technotes-djg.blogspot.co.uk/...ce-daemon.html
Project page at BitBucket - https://bitbucket.org/mixerton/contr...aemon/overview

And here's the archive with source code and documentation of his project -
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/...ace-daemon.zip
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Old 04-26-2015, 11:15 AM   #5
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Nice, all those documents seem very useful!

Reading p. 3-4 of the SLMKII MIDI Programmer’s Reference seems to confirm what you found earlier:
Quote:
Originally Posted by SLMKII MIDI Programmer’s Reference
IMPORTANT: In Automap mode, most of the SLMKII control information is normally handled by a ‘hidden’ USB port – any control information can, however, usually be sent to one of the other normal ports – and still have the same effect. Control Information emanating from the unit in Automap mode, cannot normally be ‘seen’ by host programs; as this is normally transmitted on the hidden port – special steps have to be taken by any application program in order to ‘see’ control changes etc. The Ableton Template is an exception to this, in that the hidden-Port is not used, and control is normally done on Port2.
So, concluding, you want to have the device in 'Automap mode', but communicating (bi-directionally) over a regular USB MIDI port, not a 'hidden' one, much like the Ableton template is doing.

After quickly browsing through that document, it still isn't clear to me exactly what part of the Ableton template SysEx message is responsible for that, though.

I'd suggest to make a custom template .sysex file (with CC numbers, ranges, names etc. - a rough mock-up should do for now), find a somewhat decent SysEx / binary file editor that works on your platform, and start copy/pasting excerpts (e.g. the first 256 bytes) from the Ableton template into it, and try if it starts working (more or less) as intended.
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Old 04-26-2015, 11:56 AM   #6
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I'd suggest to make a custom template .sysex file (with CC numbers, ranges, names etc. - a rough mock-up should do for now), find a somewhat decent SysEx / binary file editor that works on your platform, and start copy/pasting excerpts (e.g. the first 256 bytes) from the Ableton template into it, and try if it starts working (more or less) as intended.
This is exactly what I'm going to do.

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So, concluding, you want to have the device in 'Automap mode', but communicating (bi-directionally) over a regular USB MIDI port, not a 'hidden' one, much like the Ableton template is doing.
In fact, I think that it might be possible to make use of the Automap mode/template itself without Automap Server running and achieve the same functionality, using those "user", "inst", "fx", "mixer", "transport", "learn" and "view" buttons as a different layout toggles.
Just need some testing without Automap Server enabled.
It might be even possible to get FX's parameters of the selected track straight to the different pages of the "fx" group. However, I still need to find out how to implement "shift" functions to OSCII-Bot scripts.

As far as I've understood, the only difference between Ableton and Automap templates is that the first one sending data to midi channel 1, while Automap sends it's "hidden" data to channel 16. But, I might be wrong.

Last edited by fundorin; 04-26-2015 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 04-26-2015, 12:24 PM   #7
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It might be even possible to get FX's parameters of the selected track straight to the different pages of the "fx" group.
That could work, if the device stores values for non-displayed pages. Otherwise, you can cache the values for different pages and implement such a paging feature yourself in the OSCII-bot script. A bit more work, but gets the job done all the same.
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However, I still need to find out how to implement "shift" functions to OSCII-Bot scripts.
That's quite easy, really: you monitor the state of a button you designate as modifier button ('shift', etc.), link that to a variable (e.g. "SHIFT_BUTTON_IS_PRESSED") and use that in a simple if/else construct: if (SHIFT_BUTTON_IS_PRESSED) [do stuff]; else [do something else]. I can show you some example code if you can't figure it out.
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Old 04-26-2015, 04:36 PM   #8
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http://www.p-c-m.org/temp/reaper_csu...map_manual.pdf
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Old 04-26-2015, 10:40 PM   #9
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What are you trying to say?
As I mentioned in the initial post, Padre's plugin comes with preinstalled templates, which can't be modified other than by recompiling the dll library. For now, there's only 85 version (don't remember exact number) source files avaliable, while the plugin itself is at version 137.
The first thing I've tried to do is to compile that library, but failed, cause source files doesn't have x64 bit support and contain some bugs with obsolete variables.
I don't like how those default layouts are mapped and there's only one user definable page in one of the layouts "Remote (Padre's)" available. I need more pages and also be able to get FX plugins controls without using Automap's wrapper.

What's more, is that with midi<>osc conversion, SL controllers can be used regardless of OS type or version.

Last edited by fundorin; 04-26-2015 at 11:50 PM.
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Old 04-26-2015, 11:29 PM   #10
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I'd suggest to make a custom template .sysex file (with CC numbers, ranges, names etc. - a rough mock-up should do for now), find a somewhat decent SysEx / binary file editor that works on your platform, and start copy/pasting excerpts (e.g. the first 256 bytes) from the Ableton template into it, and try if it starts working (more or less) as intended.
I've been able to send and receive SYSEX data to Automap template, using MIDI-OX, without any changes to the template itself.

Here's the example:


I've received the following, while experimenting:

Ableton template - reacts to CC messages with LED. Can send and receive commands at channel 1. Doesn't accept SYSEX LCD Messages.

Automap template - Receives SYSEX LCD messages and responds to SYSEX requests at channel 16. Doesn't react to LED change commands. Doesn't send midi data. When user presses any control, "Automap is offline" message appears on LCD.

I assume that the host should send an initial sysex greeting to the controller, so it will think that Automap Server is online and then it will communicate with the host.

I've sent the "online" message and "automap is offline" dissapeared, showing me the text strings that I've sent to the LCD earlier, but when I've pressed any control, the "automap if offline" appeared again.

This is the message. VV bb set to 12 00, nn set to 02 (Automap template):


When this message is sent, I can control LED's from the host with CC messages. This works only until I press any control on the SL. Then it shows "Automap is offline", forcing me to send "initial" command once again.


For now, I think that it's time to move straight to the OSCII-bot and start configuring the initial setup, using Automap template, since it's already able to communicate. If everything will go well with Automap template, then we can switch to Ableton template, if user wants to keep Automap functionality and use midi2osc with some of the advanced templates.

Some LED test. It's really interesting to play with those things.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=al9Zlq1ve10

Last edited by fundorin; 04-27-2015 at 02:46 AM.
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Old 04-27-2015, 05:41 AM   #11
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I've received the following, while experimenting:

Ableton template - reacts to CC messages with LED. Can send and receive commands at channel 1. Doesn't accept SYSEX LCD Messages.

Automap template - Receives SYSEX LCD messages and responds to SYSEX requests at channel 16. Doesn't react to LED change commands. Doesn't send midi data. When user presses any control, "Automap is offline" message appears on LCD.
I'm not sure at all, but perhaps the Automap template *does* send out MIDI, but using that 'hidden' port? That's what I gathered from reading the Programmers Reference document, anyway. You might be able to find out what part of the SysEx message stands represents the USB/MIDI port to be used, so you can change it to a non-hidden, regular USB/MIDI port.

Actually, after a bit of investigating, it seems to be the byte at offset 0x66; changing it from 50h to 48h should make the template send out MIDI data at USB port 2 instead of 3. What I did, was open the "33 - - Automap Universal.syx: file in the template editor, which complains about some invalid parameter ranges, which are then clamped. I saved that file under another name (comparing them showed a handful of changed bytes throughout the file). Then, using the template editor, I went to Menu > Template > MIDI Groups, and changed the 'Common' group setting from USB Port 3 to USB Port 2, and saved it again under another name. Next, I compared the last two files in Hex Fiend (which allows me to compare binary files), and it showed that only this single byte changed, as mentioned. Finally, I took the original SysEx file (since I have no idea if/how that 'clamping' might affect anything), and edited it to change only this one particular byte. So, I'd suggest to try and upload this edited file to the device, see if it still works, while sending out MIDI data over its non-hidden USB port 2 rather than the hidden USB port 2.

(Btw, which Ableton template are you using? That bunch of Novation templates you posted includes two "Ableton Live Automap" templates, number 21 and number 32, respectively - and there are some minor differences in the SysEx data... do you know what those differences stand for, when using them?)
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I assume that the host should send an initial sysex greeting to the controller, so it will think that Automap Server is online and then it will communicate with the host.
I have no idea if such a 'handshake' is actually required. I'll go through that Programmers Reference when I have some spare time, perhaps that will alllow me to better understand how things are supposed to work - it's not easy to wrap my head around this without having my hands on the actual hardware, though.
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Haha, awesome.
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Some LED test. It's really interesting to play with those things.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=al9Zlq1ve10
Yeah, that can be fun indeed. Just for fun, here are a couple of old videos with LED tests I did on my BCR-2000: PM LFO test; VU meter test.
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Old 04-27-2015, 08:36 AM   #12
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I'm not sure at all, but perhaps the Automap template *does* send out MIDI, but using that 'hidden' port? That's what I gathered from reading the Programmers Reference document, anyway. You might be able to find out what part of the SysEx message stands represents the USB/MIDI port to be used, so you can change it to a non-hidden, regular USB/MIDI port.
Usually, there are three ports in Reaper, associated with MkII.


1. SL MkII is for keyboard\pitchbend.
2. MIDIIN2 (with corresponding MIDIOUT2) is for fader/knobs/buttons/encoders/led/lcd.
3. Automap Midi is for "user group" of the automap templates. You can select midi channels in setup and have as many different "user group" templates inside Automap, as the amount of selected midi channels.



I think that Automap Midi is the one that is called "hidden" in reference.

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(since I have no idea if/how that 'clamping' might affect anything)
Me too, but I think that the important data, which is used for enabling "Automap" mode and other service sysex data automatically clipped when importing template to the editor, leaving only information about control mappings.

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, and edited it to change only this one particular byte. So, I'd suggest to try and upload this edited file to the device, see if it still works, while sending out MIDI data over its non-hidden USB port 2 rather than the hidden USB port 2.
I've tried to upload the file. First of all, I've got a warning that I'm trying upload factory preset.
Then I've uploaded it to the one of the empty templates, which automatically turned MkII to the Automap mode (automap button is lit).
Since that is happened, I was unable to switch between Automap and Advanced modes. Each time I press the Automap button, it loads Automap template and also starts Automap Server. Both temlates are showing the same layout in "user group", which was made by me, using Automap software itself (not editor).
Those templates are "internal" and aren't .syx files, but .automap files. The same type of templates is used by Automap for FX plugins settings.
All .automap templates are still working with the same .syx "Automap Universal" template. Or with "Ableton template".



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(Btw, which Ableton template are you using? That bunch of Novation templates you posted includes two "Ableton Live Automap" templates, number 21 and number 32, respectively - and there are some minor differences in the SysEx data... do you know what those differences stand for, when using them?)
Default Ableton template is number 32. Number 21 is the result of when I've dumped template 32 to my PC and then uploaded it back under the different number. By default, number 21 is "Learn 1" template, which is the same as "Learn 2 - 11".


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I have no idea if such a 'handshake' is actually required. I'll go through that Programmers Reference when I have some spare time, perhaps that will alllow me to better understand how things are supposed to work - it's not easy to wrap my head around this without having my hands on the actual hardware, though.
It's seems that MkII needs some type of the "ping" after each sent or received command, so it will know that Automap server is up and running.
I might use some MIDI sniffer to log the communication between MkII and Automap Server. Don't know if it'll work well, but I'll report about the results here.

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Yeah, that can be fun indeed. Just for fun, here are a couple of old videos with LED tests I did on my BCR-2000:
I've seen those videos earlier and even sent them to a friend of mine.
Did you used PD for this perfomance?

Could you give me some basic scripts for OSCII-bot, so I could adapt them to my first "Hello, world" script for communication between MkII and Reaper? For now, I'm truing to modify Peaveybox script, but there's too many information for a non-programmer like me, even if it's well commented.
You've also mentioned "shift" button script. I would like to have this script, too. Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-27-2015, 08:58 AM   #13
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This command is sent by MkII when pressing Automap button:



Quote:
00015C3D 3 -- F0 Buffer: 13 Bytes System Exclusive
SYSX: F0 00 20 29 03 03 12 00 02 00 01 00 F7
for advanced mode

Quote:
00016FE6 3 -- F0 Buffer: 13 Bytes System Exclusive
SYSX: F0 00 20 29 03 03 12 00 02 00 01 01 F7
for automap mode

The second to last byte changes from 00 to 01, as in reference.

The same command was sent automatically, when I've started Automap server app.



Quote:
000452B3 3 -- F0 Buffer: 13 Bytes System Exclusive
SYSX: F0 00 20 29 03 03 12 00 04 00 01 01 F7
this one was sent when I've switched advanced template to Ableton. The message is the same, except that byte for template pick was changed from 02 (automap) to 04 (ableton), as in reference.

It doesn't seem that "ping" system command is needed. But when I shut down Automap server app, MkII immediately shows "Automap is offline" message on LCD. So, maybe, there IS some "hidden" port, as the guy who wrote Linux alternative, mentioned.

P.S. I've enabled "HUI" in Automap settings, so that "Automap HUI" port appeared in MIDI Devices, but there's no extra info going through it, which sniffer can detect.

MkII user guide also mentions that "hidden" port, but doesn't mention "Automap MIDI".


--

Last edited by fundorin; 04-27-2015 at 09:42 AM.
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Old 04-27-2015, 10:45 AM   #14
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Found a script for Bitwig studio, which allows to use MkII without Automap.

Here's the forum page on kvraudio for discussion - http://www.kvraudio.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=6003781
And a link to the page where everyone can download the script - http://www.mossgrabers.de/Software/Bitwig/Bitwig.html

In author's video about using the script, only port 2 is used for midi in and out of MkII's control section.
I must say that he have a different view on how should controller be mapped, but I really like the layout that he made here.
The Automap button isn't lit, so I assume that he's using ableton template for the script.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-07hKTv4Dg

Also Wiki page about layout settings - https://github.com/git-moss/SLMkII4Bitwig/wiki

Last edited by fundorin; 04-27-2015 at 11:53 AM.
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Old 04-27-2015, 02:20 PM   #15
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Found a script for Bitwig studio, which allows to use MkII without Automap.

Here's the forum page on kvraudio for discussion - http://www.kvraudio.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=6003781
And a link to the page where everyone can download the script - http://www.mossgrabers.de/Software/Bitwig/Bitwig.html
Hah, what a coincidence - I was just hacking around with Bitwig scripts at the moment, and have already been looking into his scripts lately.

This part of his code seems most interesting for your purposes (if I understand things correctly): at lines 157-166 is shown what is sent to the device when the script starts: first it sends this SysEx (also see lines 142-143) to switch to Ableton Automap mode:
Code:
F0 00 20 29 03 03 12 00 04 00 01 01 F7
Then it sends CC 78, value 127 (also see line 425) to turns off all LEDs.
Next, it sends CC 79, value 0 (also see lines 72 and 433) to disable transport mode.
Finally, it sends CC's 120 to 127, value 0 to set the LEDs in continuous mode.
That's it, basically; the CCs used are listed on lines 5-84.

Now, I don't quite understand yet what "Ableton Automap mode" implies, but perhaps it makes sense to try and follow the basics of this approach (i.e. using this configuration and CC numbers, but rolling your own lay-out for use with REAPER), using an OSCII-bot script?

Btw, I'm wondering, can you somehow easily set the device to "Ableton Automap mode" without sending SysEx? Iirc, the 'offical' version of OSCII-bot doesn't support SYsEx, but some cool user forked it to add support for SysEx... you may want/have to use that one, I guess (even if only to avoid having to send an initial SysEx message with another application, apart from REAPER and OSCII-bot).

I'll try and hack together some "Hello, world" script to get you started when I have some time.
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Old 04-27-2015, 02:30 PM   #16
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I've seen those videos earlier and even sent them to a friend of mine.
Awesome.
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Did you used PD for this perfomance?
I think the VU thingie used this OSCII-bot scipt; the other one used some (small part of a) Pd patch (which is incredibly intricate but poorly maintained). In the mode shown in the video, it maps banks of 32 plug-in parameters at a time onto 32 encoders (all using 14-bit mode and tweaked acceleration values, providing both very high precision and very high responsiveness at the same time). That is also relatively easy to accomplish using OSCII-bot, though.
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Old 04-28-2015, 01:53 AM   #17
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Hah, what a coincidence - I was just hacking around with Bitwig scripts at the moment, and have already been looking into his scripts lately.
I am the author of the Bitwig script. The Remotes are a nightmare to program because of this Automap thingy and the hidden Midi channel :-/

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Now, I don't quite understand yet what "Ableton Automap mode" implies, but perhaps it
makes sense to try and follow the basics of this approach (i.e. using this configuration and CC numbers, but rolling your own lay-out for use with REAPER), using an OSCII-bot script?
The "Ableton Automap mode" is basically Automap but running on the normal midi devices and not the hidden one. I guess they had to do that workaround because Ableton is using a similar scripting approach like Bitwig (but with Python instead of JavaScript). However, there are some limitations: You can not use the Automap specific buttons like user, fx, etc. which is a shame.

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Btw, I'm wondering, can you somehow easily set the device to "Ableton Automap mode" without sending SysEx?
No.

BTW: Since I also use Reaper (I am a multi-DAW weirdo ;-)), it would be great if they would come up with a similar open script API as Bitwig!
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Old 04-28-2015, 03:10 AM   #18
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BTW: Since I also use Reaper (I am a multi-DAW weirdo ;-)), it would be great if they would come up with a similar open script API as Bitwig!
Hi!

You've also made an Ableton Push Transformator for Reaper. Is it, by any chance, possible, that you could make the same script as you wrote for Bitwig, but adapt it to the midi<>osc Reaper functions? It seems that Reaper already have everything available for this task, thanks to it's OSC native support and OSCII-bot (Celphor 0.21 edition).
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Old 04-28-2015, 04:38 AM   #19
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Hi!

You've also made an Ableton Push Transformator for Reaper. Is it, by any chance, possible, that you could make the same script as you wrote for Bitwig, but adapt it to the midi<>osc Reaper functions? It seems that Reaper already have everything available for this task, thanks to it's OSC native support and OSCII-bot (Celphor 0.21 edition).
You mean a tool like the Push Transformator for the Novation Remote? Should be pretty easy to do, since I use the same code base for both the Transformator and the Bitwig script. However, it is some versions behind the current Bitwig script. Also I got zero response to the Transformator so I did not think that someone is interested in that at all ;-)
I won't promise anything since the Remote is sitting on the shelf but let's see.
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Old 04-28-2015, 05:25 AM   #20
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I've got extra manuals from Novation support, but, to be true, those documents are next level to my understanding. Anyway, here's the link to my dropbox archive - https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/...20material.zip
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Old 04-28-2015, 05:35 AM   #21
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You mean a tool like the Push Transformator for the Novation Remote?
I've though about some tool, that will allow user to map SL freely and have feedback from Reaper. The main goal is to get the control of the DAW, that would be close to the one that you've made for Bitwig.

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Should be pretty easy to do, since I use the same code base for both the Transformator and the Bitwig script. However, it is some versions behind the current Bitwig script.
Nice to hear that this isn't an extraordinary hard task.

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Also I got zero response to the Transformator so I did not think that someone is interested in that at all ;-)
I won't promise anything since the Remote is sitting on the shelf but let's see.
I don't have Push but there are two SL controllers at my desk, waiting to be used as control surfaces for Reaper. 8)

Why don't you use you Remote for controlling DAWs? For me, it can provide a lots of control with those encoders, leds and LCD. For now, I'm mostly using Lemur app for some basic control of the Reaper. It's breaking my heart that I've payed lots of money for my Remote SL 25 and 61 SL MkII and can't use them like you did with Bitwig or every other user controlling their hosts with a controllers from much smarter developers than Novation with their Automap.
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Old 04-28-2015, 05:54 AM   #22
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I am the author of the Bitwig script. The Remotes are a nightmare to program because of this Automap thingy and the hidden Midi channel :-/
Hey, nice to see you joining the discussion!

Good to have you here, as programming for such devices seems even more of a nightmare if you *don't* have one sitting on the shelf.
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The "Ableton Automap mode" is basically Automap but running on the normal midi devices and not the hidden one. I guess they had to do that workaround because Ableton is using a similar scripting approach like Bitwig (but with Python instead of JavaScript).
Thanks for your pointers.

So, do you agree that the basic steps outlined above (following the approach of your Bitwig script) would be a suitable approach in this case as well? I'm still wondering if it makes more sense to use the Automap mode or the 'advanced mode'.
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However, there are some limitations: You can not use the Automap specific buttons like user, fx, etc. which is a shame.
Do they simply not send any MIDI messages (which indeed would be a shame)? Or do you mean that there's some Automap-specific functionality not working? That would seem irrelevant, insofar as the idea here is to not use Automap at all, I guess.
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BTW: Since I also use Reaper (I am a multi-DAW weirdo ;-)), it would be great if they would come up with a similar open script API as Bitwig!
Multi-DAW/host/sequencer weirdo here, too. Or perhaps I should just say "Hi, I'm Banned, and I'm a DAW slut".

Indeed, it would be great to something (more) similar in REAPER. Justin has hinted at the possibility of including something like OSCII-bot in REAPER, which would presumably make it possible to access REAPER's API as well. (Conversely, as I suspect you know already, when using ReaScripts, we can use the API, but don't have sufficient access to MIDI/OSC input/output).
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Old 04-28-2015, 06:15 AM   #23
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Do they simply not send any MIDI messages (which indeed would be a shame)? Or do you mean that there's some Automap-specific functionality not working? That would seem irrelevant, insofar as the idea here is to not use Automap at all, I guess.
Everett, I've just set SL to ableton template (it's just an "advanced mode" template, same as the other 31 templates. Only template 33 (Automap Universal) lights the "automap" button).
So I've unloaded Automap server and pressed "user" button on the controller.
This is what was sent from the SL:



First command is an initial sysex message that SL sent, notifying the host that it's ready to communicate in ableton automap mode.
Second one is the regular CC command that SL sent simultaneously with the first one. The CC number is the same as in reference for "user" button.
The third command was sent a few moments later, because Automap server started and SL said to server that it is available and already in automap mode. It also switched to the "Automap Universal" template right after.
You can notice that one byte changed is sysex message from 04 (ableton) to 02 (automap).
I assume that if Automap isn't installed at the computer, SL will stay in advanced mode with ableton template loaded and it would be possible to use regular CC commands from those buttons.

Last edited by fundorin; 04-28-2015 at 07:03 AM.
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Old 04-28-2015, 06:28 AM   #24
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I also thought that Automap isn't developing anymore, but a good guy from Novation support, who sent those reference docs, told me that it's still in development. He also said that we should use Ableton template. Here's the quote:

Quote:
Automap is not a discontinued technology, we continue to maintain and update it as a current product.

With regards to controlling the LED and LCD in advanced mode, the Ableton template is set up differently to other standard templates and allows feedback from the computer.

This is quite an in depth topic and is discussed in detail in the documentation that I sent in response to your other email.

Last edited by fundorin; 04-28-2015 at 06:55 AM.
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Old 04-28-2015, 08:27 AM   #25
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Just remembered that I've seen a project that will make SL MkII act like an MCU controller. It's written on Python. https://github.com/mzuther/PythonMcu
Maybe this information can also be helpful.
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Old 05-07-2015, 11:07 PM   #26
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Default Transformator for RemoteSLMkII

Here we go. I created a first version of Transformator for the Novation Remotes. Should work with all versions incl. MkI, but can't test those since I do not own one:

http://mossgrabers.de/Software/Reape...atorRemote.zip

Read the included readme file for installation instructions and known issues (due to non fixed Reaper bugs).
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Old 05-09-2015, 08:42 AM   #27
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Here we go. I created a first version of Transformator for the Novation Remotes. Should work with all versions incl. MkI, but can't test those since I do not own one:

http://mossgrabers.de/Software/Reape...atorRemote.zip

Read the included readme file for installation instructions and known issues (due to non fixed Reaper bugs).
Awesome news, Moss! I've received the notification about your post in the middle of the night, but couldn't get back to sleep, until I've tried Transformator. I tried to figure out the layout, but couldn't. Will try again later. For now, I've found one bug. When user press "fx disable" button, it won't enable it back with the second press.
I wonder, is it possible to edit layout manually and compile it back to executable after that?
Anyway, this is really cool project. Thanks alot!

P.S. It doesn't want to start today, and Max 64-bit proccess sits in memory. I can't end it forcibly.
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Old 05-10-2015, 11:17 AM   #28
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I tried to figure out the layout, but couldn't.
The layout is the same as with the Bitwig script. See the Wiki or my Tutorial video:

https://github.com/git-moss/SLMkII4Bitwig/wiki
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-07hKTv4Dg

The only difference is that the play/sequencer mode is not available, since Reaper is not clip based.

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For now, I've found one bug. When user press "fx disable" button, it won't enable it back with the second press.
Can't confirm that. Works fine here.

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I wonder, is it possible to edit layout manually and compile it back to executable after that?
If you own Max I could give you the sources but the stuff is pretty complicated.
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Old 05-10-2015, 06:07 PM   #29
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Can't confirm that. Works fine here.
I hadn't a chance to test this out again, cause I still have those issues with Max process not finishing properly when exiting Transformator. Will try to replicate it tomorrow.

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If you own Max I could give you the sources but the stuff is pretty complicated.
I've downloaded 30-day trial version of Max. Those sources could be handy. Thanks.

I'm also interested in running two instances of Transformator, cause I have both Remote 25 and SL 61 and want to use them simultaneosly: 25 as mixer control and 61 as strip/fx/editor.

UPD.

Pot/Fader pickup mode is needed.

When selecting track with buttons under the faders, pressing button selects track normally. Depressing track button makes track selector jumps to some other value. Button 2 jumps by 2 tracks (i.e. from 2 to 4 to 6 and so on). Button 3 jumps by 3 tracks (5-8-11). Or something like this. This only happens in TCP mode. I haven't found any issues with it in MCP (mixer mode).

Not possible to set and save custom port and midi device in Transformator. Even after I've disabled every other midi device in File\Midi devices. At start of TM, it sets "Automap MIDI" as receive and "Bome's MIDI" as send ports.

Encoders do not control fx/device settings. LCD is showing proper names for settings, but LED rings doesn't show anything, as well as there's no actual control of the vst's parameters.

"Write on/off" only switches between read/write. No "off" option is available.

Can't replicate previous issue when device couldn't be enabled with the button. It's working now.

Is there any command assigned to "Speed dial" encoder?

Last edited by fundorin; 05-11-2015 at 08:16 AM.
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Old 05-23-2015, 07:11 PM   #30
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Pot/Fader pickup mode is needed.

Encoders do not control fx/device settings. LCD is showing proper names for settings, but LED rings doesn't show anything, as well as there's no actual control of the vst's parameters.

"Write on/off" only switches between read/write. No "off" option is available.

Can't replicate previous issue when device couldn't be enabled with the button. It's working now.
Can confirm all these issues are present, apart from the enable / disable issue, that seems fine to me.

Using ZEROSLMk2 here.

I noticed another couple of things:

Switching between track bank 1 and 2 can cause the first track of bank 2 to remain selected in reaper, but not on the controller

It's possible to lose sync between the plugin selection in reaper and the controller, by using the right hand "device" button to go beyond the end of the list. (FX bypass will work on the correct plugin in this case, but the plugin will not be made visible in reaper.)

Holding the "Preview" button to switch the screens to other rows doesn't work.

The touch sensitivity for the bottom row of encoders seems to be linked to the top row. Tapping the bottom row will not switch the screens, you have to actually turn a knob, and once they are on the screen tapping the top row will switch between the bottom row values rather than selecting the top row.



Overall though, I'm very impressed with this. I've basically used this thing as two extra midi ports for the last year, and I reckon I will actually use it as a controller now.
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Old 05-31-2015, 12:57 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travesty
When selecting track with buttons under the faders, pressing button selects track normally. Depressing track button makes track selector jumps to some other value. Button 2 jumps by 2 tracks (i.e. from 2 to 4 to 6 and so on). Button 3 jumps by 3 tracks (5-8-11). Or something like this. This only happens in TCP mode. I haven't found any issues with it in MCP (mixer mode).
I can not reproduce that. Do you have the Remotes 2nd Midi Port Enabled in Reaper, too?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Travesty
Encoders do not control fx/device settings. LCD is showing proper names for settings, but LED rings doesn't show anything, as well as there's no actual control of the vst's parameters.
Fixed! Please download again: http://mossgrabers.de/Software/Reape...atorRemote.zip

Quote:
Originally Posted by Travesty
Switching between track bank 1 and 2 can cause the first track of bank 2 to remain selected in reaper, but not on the controller
I know that the track selection via OSC is sometime a bit weird but I could not reproduce your specific case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Travesty
Holding the "Preview" button to switch the screens to other rows doesn't work.
What is the "Preview" button?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Travesty
The touch sensitivity for the bottom row of encoders seems to be linked to the top row. Tapping the bottom row will not switch the screens, you have to actually turn a knob, and once they are on the screen tapping the top row will switch between the bottom row values rather than selecting the top row.
Yes, a weirdness of this Ableton-Automap mode I could not work around.
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Old 06-17-2015, 08:12 AM   #32
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What is the "Preview" button?
Hey man, the preview button is on the bottom left of the remote zero slmk2. Holding this button and pressing one of the non touch sensitive controls, such as the buttons, will change the display to show the values of that row of controls.
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Old 06-17-2015, 08:48 AM   #33
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I've been trying to get this working again, it stopped for some reason.

I have the batch file load the max patch then reaper, I have the correct device name set up in the osc prefs in reaper, and the correct reaperosc file loaded.

The ports are set correctly, and reaper is receiving info from the controller when I press listen.

The midi ports are disabled in midi devices.

I can't work out what I'm doing wrong now, especially since it was previously working, and it's nothing to do with the update, it stopped working before that.

The screen on the controller simply states "Please select a track" and is unresponsive.

Any ideas anyone? I'm stumped :|
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Old 06-24-2015, 11:30 PM   #34
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I've been trying to get this working again, it stopped for some reason.

I have the batch file load the max patch then reaper, I have the correct device name set up in the osc prefs in reaper, and the correct reaperosc file loaded.

The ports are set correctly, and reaper is receiving info from the controller when I press listen.

The midi ports are disabled in midi devices.

I can't work out what I'm doing wrong now, especially since it was previously working, and it's nothing to do with the update, it stopped working before that.

The screen on the controller simply states "Please select a track" and is unresponsive.

Any ideas anyone? I'm stumped :|
Seems the OSC port from Reaper to Translator is not correct?!
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Old 10-19-2015, 10:01 AM   #35
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Still desperately trying to make a decent controller out of my sl mkii.
Got back to Transformer. I'm wondering, why @moss don't post it on his site.
My personal question is how to make transformator to remember midi ports that I set, and how to put app in tray?
Thanks.
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Old 10-20-2015, 06:30 AM   #36
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Still desperately trying to make a decent controller out of my sl mkii.
Got back to Transformer. I'm wondering, why @moss don't post it on his site.
My personal question is how to make transformator to remember midi ports that I set, and how to put app in tray?
Thanks.
Hi,

Sorry I don't have any novation specific info, but I saw from some other posts that you are aware of MiditranslatorPro. I made a full preset in it to use my hui with klinkes csurf. Are you on PC? Its pretty much 1:1. Hui to MCU and back.
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Old 10-20-2015, 07:21 AM   #37
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I'm happy that someone have insterest in my issue. Thanks.
I have your preset and Midi translator but had no luck making it work with my controller. SL MkII has little to no support for mackie. It has HUI implementation, but it only can transport play\stop\rec and FF\RWD. No loop. Solo buttons for tracks are at the same row as transport. Encoders doesn't work in HUI. Can't tell if it's because of Reaper still have "partial" HUI for all this years. I think it's because of Novation.
If you can suggest me of how to make SL MkII act as Mackie, I would be very glad to hear. I'm on PC, btw.

This is how the controller looks like - http://us.novationmusic.com/sites/de...straight_0.jpg

Last edited by fundorin; 10-20-2015 at 08:52 AM.
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Old 10-20-2015, 02:44 PM   #38
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Hi,

I see....well, I tried the partial hui and I saw it only had very basic functions. But I must say if you can know what the novtion sends and what messages it expects to receive, I'm sure it wouldn't be too hard to get it all working using mtp.

Do the encoders and stuff send any midi out in non auto map mode? I have the docs for the hui spec if you need them.

I assume you have miditranlatorPRO? If you have it, and some time AND the controller can send and receive midi...then you should be golden.
I'm not an expert at mtp, but I think it could help here.
Gl


Edit...the only problem I had that I didn't resolve was converting the display messages that show on the hui screen. Hui uses zones..8 if remember correctly....where the MCU is straight across in two rows. I bypassed the problem by using an android tablet on my hui as a second PC monitor and using a MCU display emulator to show the info. Miditranslator pro can do it, but my hardware display ..on the hui....is smaller than the MCU display so I would have had to truncate text..not usable. But everything else works both ways.
Guido

Last edited by LugNut; 10-20-2015 at 03:01 PM.
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Old 10-20-2015, 03:06 PM   #39
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Hi,

Can you direct me to the midi implementation docs for the novation...u pick which one of the two units.
Start with just getting one fader going.

....I read thru these posts. This should be very doable. Klinkes csurf out to mtp .....converts to hui....sends to novation advanced mode (if that sends/recieves hui commands).... Novation hui out to mtp ..converts to MCU...to klinke(reaper).
The first thing is to get the ports right in mtp. I know its weird at first, but it will become clearer.

Sorry, but do you own MiditranslatorPro? Pro is important because that's the version that supports 16 byte midi commands. The whole hui protocol is all based on two midi messages per function..16 bytes. One button press...2 midi commands. One button release..two midi commands.

Guido

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Old 10-20-2015, 03:17 PM   #40
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Quote:
I see....well, I tried the partial hui and I saw it only had very basic functions. But I must say if you can know what the novtion sends and what messages it expects to receive, I'm sure it wouldn't be too hard to get it all working using mtp.
Sometimes I think that I know this damned controller better, then myself. I know every CC it sends and receives and I also have a MIDI Programmer's manual for it.

Quote:
Do the encoders and stuff send any midi out in non auto map mode? I have the docs for the hui spec if you need them.
Yes, they do. It's just three initial sysex messages needed to be sent to controller to make it think that Automap server is online. Then it'll start receiving feedback from host.


Quote:
I assume you have miditranlatorPRO? If you have it, and some time AND the controller can send and receive midi...then you should be golden.
I'm not an expert at mtp, but I think it could help here.
To be true, I have trial version of Bome's. But there's one issue. I'm afraid of SL MkII and I don't think that HUI is any easier.

Quote:
Edit...the only problem I had that I didn't resolve was converting the display messages that show on the hui screen. Hui uses zones..8 if remember correctly....where the MCU is straight across in two rows.
SL is also two straight lines, but you can address sysex messages to pick starting point for the message at the particular column of the lcd.

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I bypassed the problem by using an android tablet on my hui as a second PC monitor and using a MCU display emulator to show the info. Miditranslator pro can do it, but my hardware display ..on the hui....is smaller than the MCU display so I would have had to truncate text..not usable. But everything else works both ways.
Do you know how to implement display functionality on a larger display?
Mine has 144 columns and two rows.
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