Hook up midi keyboard to mac
If you are just starting out with your home recording studio set-up, the first thing you may wish to do is find out how to connect a MIDI keyboard or digital piano up to your computer. This will enable you to use any interactive MIDI software products: The other benefit of making a MIDI connection is if you want to learn to play keyboard or piano. Once you have a MIDI connection you can benefit from interactive piano lesson software and online piano courses. It is also a great way to benefit from interactive music theory software and apps.
For more information, read our disclosure policy here. Compatible with PC, Mac and iPad. We advise that you always stick with a well-known brand which is why we recommend any of the above. They all have good manufacturer support, up-to-date drivers and good guarantees in the event of any problems. If you want even more choice, then you can follow this link to find the current top 10 most popular MIDI interfaces.
Although you can get other kinds of MIDI controller, the keyboard is the most popular, widely available, and reasonably priced. If you have not yet got any kind of keyboard, then look first at Getting started — choosing the right keyboard. It will help you decide the best MIDI keyboard for you.
If you not only want to use your keyboard or digital piano as a MIDI controller, but also want to record the sound of it, then do look read our post on how to record your keyboard. There are lots of recommendations in there for kit that will let you do BOTH. And put your keyboard right at the heart of your home recording studio. You first need to establish that it has got a means of connecting with your computer. Look to make sure it has a MIDI port.
When you press a key the action is registered by the software you are using through the MIDI link. Look for ports like the one in the image below. So how do you connect from these ports to your PC? This is the simplest, high speed, no-fuss solution. Ideal if you want to use your laptop. If you can, buy a high quality branded one as you will get more support from the manufacturer to help with any setting up and they do work better and last longer. Some soundcards come already equipped with MIDI ports like the ones shown above.
The accepted way actually makes a lot of sense. You want MIDI data to go out of your controller and in to your sound module. No, you connect the audio output to an audio mixer input. And then you connect the mixer outputs to the inputs of your amplifier. Same thing with MIDI. This is a professional review site and if you buy anything recommended through Music Repo, we may receive a commission, at no extra cost to you.
We are experts in Music Technology and thoroughly research all the products and services we write about in our posts. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own. Click here for further details. Jane i have an Evolution mk midi keyboard with just the out midi port and am using the midi to usb cable to connect it to my laptop on reason software but still its not responding and i have made all settings.
Its so frustrating what do i do please? Make sure you have plugged the correct plug into the port. And try our article on testing a MIDI device for other troubleshooting hints and tips: Many of the newer keyboards now come without midi ports, only USB midi not the regular usb but midi to host connector featured on my bk7m.
Can i connect my soundmodule to these new keyboards via the usb host to usb host connection which i have not yet seen as standard cables? Hi, it might be possible with this: So i have a program for sound from my Macbook Air… My keyboard has a usb a female and a usb b female … If i buy one of those would i still need a audio cable connecting my headphone jack to an amp or is that only for when u connect the Macbook air and keyboard with a Usb-midi cable?
If i buy a Usb a male to usb a female or a Usb a male to usb b female would i still need a audio cable or no? It depends whether you want to use your keyboard as a controller or whether you want to record the sound of it. I have created a whole video series on how to connect and record your keyboard, especially look at the first video which explains the difference between MIDI and Audio and see if that helps. I have a Yamaha PSR now and have always wanted to add a bass pedal board so I can play my own bass lines, rather than rely on the automatic accompaniment.
Hi, you will have to look into the manual of the two devices -thed pedalboard and the keyboard. You might want to look at whether you can adjust the channel that the MIDI signal is being sent on from the pedalboard, or how to adjust the patch in the keyboard. You might have to contact Icon for some tech support. The device should plug and play, but if you are on Windows then sometimes the drivers can become corrupt and need reinstalling.
Try the troubleshooting tips in this article: My Yamaha s90 xs is not coming up instead it is saying firmware update… usb memory not found. What can I do? The two devices will work fine alongside eachother. I have a small USB keyboard too, which works fine, but is no good for recording the piano music that I need to. Any help would be greatly appreciated! I have an interface Midisport.
What software do I need? Hi Jane, I have some old instrument stuff that was left by my brother. Idont know how to set this up. It consist of a M-audio oxygen 61 usb midi controller, edirol uex 25, roland xp60, roland sc, behringer mixer, amplifier, 2 midi cable standard and midi to usb cable. You can just use the USB connection. Get that set-up working first and see how you get on. My query here involves the playing of MIDI files of which I have quite a number mostly downloaded from the internet.
They also exist on my computer in the same manner. Can I also accomplish the following: Enjoying this blog immensely, and, many, many thanks!!! Glad you are enjoying the blog. There are a lot of questions there — I think the best thing to do is download the manual for the keyboard you are interested in and read the section on MIDI in detail.
You should be able to have the files on your computer and play them back on the keyboard, and you should be able to fiddle with playback settings and MIDI channels in a DAW such as Reaper. Or you may find that laoding the files directly on the keyboard might work depending on what functionality is built into the keyboard. I am not familiar with those models in detail. I prefer using a computer interface to the small screens on keyboards. I guess the thing to do is get the keyboard and experiment. I have a kawai CN23 digital piano, and when I hook up the midi to usb to my macbook and go into garageband, the sustain pedal is registering as a note!
As soon as i touch it it registers as a held E note. Hmmm, strange and I am not sure what to suggest — other than go back to the manual for your Kawai piano, or maybe raise a query directly with their technical support. It is an odd one. Hello, I recently purchased a Yamaha MX61 keyboard.
It has a great tone generator for live performances and then some. I simply want to use Kontakt and have my board as the controller. I want to use the software. Also, would the sound then have to come from the headphone port on my MAC? Where are you hearing the sounds? Just from your keyboard? If so, then check the manual for your keyboard because I think there will be a setting to turn the local sounds off.
Then you should just be able to use it as a controller. If the sounds are coming through your mac speakers from your keyboard then…. Think you might have to post specific questions to Yamaha support. I have yamaha psr I would recommend buying a branded one, one with good manufacturer and tech support. The problem with those cheaper interfaces is they can be unreliable and unsupported. Jane, I am trying to use my Yamaha P to communicate to Finale software, specifically to use the Hyperscribe function in which you can play on the keyboard and the music is notated directly in the software.
Try running through the steps in my article on testing your MIDI device. Also, just check compatability — I seem to remember that the Midisport Uno may not work with Yamaha personal keyboards. Reaper is very good, and you can get that on a 60 day trial. Then if you like it the price is very reasonable. Mixcraft is also fantastic if you are quite new to all this and want something easy — you can try a free trial of that.
I recently bought a casio ctkex cheap to have a go at home recording. I have got all leads in correctly but cannot seem to get any joy in setting sound up on my pc. I have tried making sure all input and output channels were set up correctly but to no avail.
Our Top 4 choices For Simple USB-MIDI interfaces which work!
I realise that it may be something simple but any help would be gratefully received, Thank you in anticipation, Regards, Dave. I have an old roland mk II midi controller. How can I connect it to my computer? Can i just use the usb-midi cables u mentioned above? I had a macbook and still have a midi-usb cord, which worked great with Garageband—you just plug everything in and away it goes.
Any suggestions you can provide? You should then be able to play them with your keyboard http: I have a Korg X5 that I have had for 15 years with the intention to learn how to play and to create music. I will be 50 May 31, and decided I am going to follow my passion for music, peace, unity, illumination, etc. The problems is not my passion it is knowledge. I have plugged my microphone into my A6 and Ableton recognizes it. I know I am so close to starting my music creation journey but I am stuck for I do not have the financial resources at this time to buy a controller listed on lists inside Ableton plus I have read lots of people using the X5 as a controller.
Hi, you definitely should not need to install any drivers for the X5, or connect it up directly to your laptop. If you follow the instructions in our page on testing a MIDI device — and I know you have already looked at this — make sure you are running the tests using the A6 as the device. If you get all that working and you then wish to play back from the laptop to the keyboard and you are getting overlap of sound from the Echo Back then you will need to set Local Off on the X5 — this disconnects the keyboard section from the internal tone generator. I have casio CTK , and theirs only a jack plug to use midi out.
How can i connect it to my windows 8 pc to create a music.. Sorry about that http: Hi, I have a Casio ctk keyboard and want to connect it to my pc with Windows 8, I want to use it with fruity loops I want to know if it will work and how should I do it. If it is USB then it should work as a controller and details will be in the manual. If not then you will need a MIDI interface to get it to work.
Buy a branded one that will work well on Windows 8 if you can. I have a Mac running Os X Can you help me? Hopefully that will help https: I have a Yamaha NP I want the sound to play through my computer speakers where I can then use wireless headphones to listen to me playing. I hope this makes sense. Hi Shawna if you want to get this result you will have to use your NP as a MIDI controller and get some software with software instruments to play back through your speakers.
Have you had a look at Reaper, you can try that out for free. Create a virtual instrument on a new track, select the TTS-1 which is a general MIDI instrument, arm it for recording and you should be able to hear yourself. Is that the problem and if so, is there any way around it? Can I use with other software options or is it an interface issue? Hi, check out my article on testing your MIDI device, to see if the keyboard is connected properly. Hope that helps https: I am not sure which software you are referring to, exactly, but if you have connected your keyboard up to your computer correctly, and the audio tracker software has MIDI functionality then yes you should be able to use it as a controller.
Im a developing pianist.. I want to know how this connection helps.. Does it do auto transposition? If you make a MIDI connection between your piano and your computer it means you can use software to help you with your playing. For instance there is a lot of learning software that uses the MIDI connection to understand what you are playing and give you feedback. And yes you can transpose etc. So far I have seen lights and had sound to the Alesis, but I have not seen any indication of recognition through eithr pc or mac nor any programs I am running.
I have only attached one midi cable from the yamaha to the Alesis. Neither my pc or mac are even recognizing anything is plugged in. I am running Wavelab LE7 for a program. Do I need two midi cables? The IO2 should be a plug and play device. Try connecting it directly to a USB port on computer, not via a hub. You need to establish that the IO2 is working and being recognised by the computer before going any further. Look in your control panel windows or system preferences mac and make sure that the IO2 is showing up as an available audio device, then set it to the default.
Only start up your recording software after you have checked that the IO2 is being recognised. I have had to renew my PC. I am using Reaper software. I have a midi to USB cable. However I do not remember what make it is! Therefore I can not download the necessary software to get it to work. If it powers up, then it is possible you need to update your windows drivers. There is a link on the page to more information about this advanced troubleshooting. Hope it helps https: It now works again???????????????????
Anyway as I have got your attention, could you please let me have your opinion of Mixcraft? As I am thinking of buying it. Glad to hear it is working, even if the reason why is a mystery. I love Mixcraft v6, it is such an easy product to use for beginners and it is really well featured. Good luck with your recording etc. I have a bit old keyboard Casio ca tonebank with no midi out just an audio out.
Is there any way to connect it to my pc? You would only be able to record the sound. I have a novation launch key midi interface, focusrite pro 24 audio interface , connected to a MacBook pro running main stage. I want to use a roland RD as my main board, then use the launchkey assignable encoders to control the functionality of main stage. Can I connect the RD to the mac book via usb and the novation to the MacBook via the other available usb on my macbook.
Can u please help me to find the solution. I thin you should be able to, you will have to assign the output of the track to the MIDI out of the connector. Assuming it is all hooked up and installed correctly that should work — refer to the Sonar documentation for how to do this.
If you need to trouble shoot whether or not the MIDI interface is functioning correctly, then we have an article on trouble shooting MIDI controllers which applies just the same to an interface: I would consider the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2, it is great quality and because it ships with a lite version of Ableton Live it should work very well with it, here is a link: Thanks for being such a great answerer of questions!! No you are right, the M-Audio Uno etc will not work backwards. Hi Stu, if the output from the headphones works ok and does the job for you then why not? However if you connect L and R then you can adjust the volume etc of each individually and the positioning in the stereo field.
Hi, I am an absolute beginner in this matter…and a pianoteacher who teaches as a volunteer in villages in India… I received a M-audio Axiom61 as a gift upon my request if somebody could donate a keyboard for one of my talented little piano students who does not have the funds to buy one herself…and now I need to try to set it up for her.
So; we have a talented and motivated little girl of 6, we have the keyboard, and we have a laptop that runs on windows XP…and we are trying to find a as simple as possible way and if possible with free software to get the keyboard making piano sounds when she pushes a key so she can study… any ideas what is the best way? Hi, I was going to suggest downloading Ignite, which is freely available if you have an Axiom, but unfortunately it is for Windows 7 and above.
For XP you could try Anvil Studio http: What will be the simplest way to get some sounds after hooking my controller to pc? I know a DAW is a solution but, is there a simple software just to play the controller? Hi Julian, there are a lot of stand alone players out there, for example the Native Instruments Kontakt Player and the Garritan Sounds player. Have a look to see if those would help you achieve what you are after.
I think I may need a good sound card. Can you help please. Hi, I am not familiar with the software. If there is reverb and chorus functionality in the software, then it is probably worth posting in the forum or searching there for help using the software. It is possible to buy interfaces with onboard DSP such as reverb and chorus, but I wonder if actually what you are asking is how the software works?
I have a Casio Privia PX piano with a usb interface. Yes, it should be possible, but you will need to select the USB interface as the MIDI output device, not one of the built-in instruments in the software. Usually there is a device menu, or you can select it on each track individually — you can choose which instrument so select the interface. If it is a keyboard with onboard sounds then a MIDI-USB cable will still not be able to transmit any sound, only performance information.
Is a midi cable and USB cable the same thing? Bought one at Staples and sound to the piano marvel program is not going through. Some keyboards can connect to computer directly using a USB cable. Make sure the keyboard is selected as the MIDI device in the program. It is not the same as a MIDI cable. If you use one of those, then you need to correctly install the interface and then make sure it is selected as the MIDI input device in your software. What software should I get to add synthesised sounds like a piano or a drum kit so its mapped onto my keyboard?
Hi Tom, are you saying you want your keyboard to play this new sounds? I think it will depend on what kind of keyboard it is. If you head to this page http: On the other hand, if you want to use your keyboard as a controller and generate the sounds on your computer then you can do that in any DAW like Pro Tools, Cubase, Mixcraft, Sonar etc, or with standalone products like the Native Instruments Kontakt or Garritan Sounds.
At one point if I clicked on the piano grid on my software the sound from my pc would play on my casio speakers but the data notes do not play from my casio to my pc so I cannot record midi. I have tried acid pro 7 and FL 10 but I still cannot get the midi to work. Hi, first of all check the settings on your keyboard by checking in the manual, there is a copy available here http: Hi, yes you should easily be able to use it as a MIDI controller — and if you go the Yamaha site they have all the manuals and downloads to help you.
I own a Casino Lk piano and a Windows 8 computer. Whenever I try to search online for a way, I get all sorts of confusing results… Any help would be appreciated. Hi Andrew, I think you will have to refer to the manual, as the question is very specific to this particular keyboard.
The LK manual can be found here http: All the best, Jane. I have just purchased a Korg Volca Sample which has annold style Din midi in connector. Do you know of any cable or convertor that will allow my M-audio oxygen 25 usb keyboard to control it? If possible I dont want to use a computer in the setup. You will need a different controller to avoid the use of a computer.
I am saying this on the basis of the info about the current oxygen 25 on the M-Audio site. Thanks for your help. Can you recommend a small keyboard with big keys that might provide old style midi out? Hi Alex, I do apologise for time taken to reply, I was immediately going to recommend the Alesis Q25 https: Still, I think there are plenty of Q25 still available.
MIDI Connection | How to Connect a MIDI Keyboard to a Computer
If you want a controller keyboard with extra pads, faders etc then the new Alesis VI25 has all that, full-sized keys, and that desired MIDI port https: Hi Jane, Thank you for this and for your simple and straightforward answers to questions! I am looking to very simply connect a controller to the computer and trigger sounds in real time so I can hear them via the computer audio output as I play. I have no interest in sequencing or recording, just in using the computer to expand the range of sounds I can play with my keyboard. Can you recommend the simplest program or tell me the name of what I am looking for?
I guess it depends on the genre — how about Garritan? I really do appreciate your response. The example you showed at the beginning of this forum looks like it will do the trick. Hi I am kiran. Now I am going to buy one new keyboard. I connect it to scarlett 2i4 audio interface and den to pc. In most of the new keyboard models I find only usb midi port. Hi Kiran, I think if you can find a keyboard with a MIDI port not just USB then you will be better connecting it through an interface — but this will only be very marginal.
I have tried to connect it to an amp and use headphones, but no sound will come out — and then I connected it to my apple mac, and used the software that came with the keyboard — which is: Thanks for your time, I really appreciate it. Hi Izzy, firstly the sound is not going to come from the keyboard, it is going to come from the software. Try the following link to troubleshoot and make sure the controller is being recognised correctly, once you know it is, then you should refer to the manual for the software http: If you have recently purchased the Alesis keyboard new, then you can contact the Alesis support team by phone and they will talk you through the set-up if you are still stuck.
I have window 8 pc and midi controller goes under other devices it puts it under printer group. Thanks for any input. Hi, if your controller is not being recognised correctly and it is supposed to be class compliant then it may be that your drivers that should be build into Windows 8 are missing or corrupt. There is a link here to a good step-by-step guide to diagnosing and then troubleshooting, and at the bottom there is a link to the audio codec you may need to download and install if this proves to be the case after working through their suggestions. You seem to have helped people here with a similar problem that I have.
I wonder if you can help me? I have a Quickshot Midi Composer keyboard. It is a midi-controller and sends midi out that can be received by computer sound cards. This technology is 20 yrs old. I no longer use a desktop computer. I use a Dell laptop that only has sound card inputs via mini-jack access.
My problem is finding an adapter that will work in either case. Is that the only option available? Thank you for your time to answer this. That line is is only for audio signals. Hi, yes, all you need are a couple of standard MIDI leads by the sound of it. Thanks for getting in touch. Hello Jane, love this site and would appreciate if you could answer some queries. I thought I should only hear that through an audio track. The reason I bought cubase was to make my Korg pieces better, I wanted the synth to sound better so I can start to send off the finished tracks to music libraries.
I suppose I just want my compositions to sound more professional. Wondered if you have any advice? Hi Phil If you are just making a MIDI connection from your Korg to Cubase, then all the extra bells, whistles and sounds you are hearing are something to do with how you are setting up Cubase, so you should focus on checking the manual and looking for tutorials on how to get the MIDI set up right in Cubase. If you do want to record the actual Korg sounds, then you will need to make some kind of audio connection, so you may need to purchase an audio interface that will enable you to take the actual line output of the Korg and record to an audio track in Cubase.
I also have a laptop and a scanner. Is there anyway to get the Piano to play the sheet music I have? Hi Larry, thank you for your question. It is such a common one I have decided to answer it in a blog post and video. The short answer to your question is yes — the long answer about how to do it is here: If I buy a midi to usb cable will I still be able to use it or do i have to get it repaired?
Unless it has an input for a separate power supply in which case you could purchase that as well. Thanks for your time! Hi, yes you should be able to pick any virtual instrument you like in your software and use your Korg M1 to control it, as long as you have made a suitable MIDI connection between the Korg and your computer. Hi, This is Subhro here. Though i have been playing for a long time, i am a little weak in technicalities. I have a lenovo laptop, using windows 8.
I just want to connect my keyboard to the laptop and directly record music? However, having a dedicated interface or USB mixer will give a better recording result. Hope that helps, Jane. However there is a midi out port only no in port , is it possible to still use this keyboard with windows 7? Does the keyboard have its own power supply? If you are not using the USB cable, then you will need to power it from an external power supply.
There are lots of reasons.
Connect a music keyboard to your computer
You might have more than one device to connect up. You might only want to tie up one USB port. Hope that answers your question. Been having this issue with my MIDI keyboard for sometime now. The DAWs do not recognize the signal too. If I restart my keyboard the same thing happens. ANy ideas for a fix?
Hm, sounds like you may have to contact the manufacturer of the keyboard to get some support on this, if it is dropping out. Make sure you have connected the cable correctly connect the in of the cable to the out of the keyboard and vice versa. You will connect the interface to one USB port, and then connect the Yamaha to another. You will be able to trigger from the Yamaha and use it as a controller you may need to turn the volume down in church if you are using software rather than the sound of the keyboard!
Just after submitting my last comment about MIDI for beginners , I came across an illuminating quote from your good self:. I also learned that Channel 10 is usually reserved for percussion. But for the life of me, I have been unable to unearth which instruments the other 15 are relating to. And if so, how to decide then which Chanel would be suited to or suitable for , say, this trumpet,of my previous contribution? And, following up on this, in what manner do things like Program Changes and Banks fit in? Hi, the channels do not relate to instruments — except that channel 10 is usually related to percussion.
The voices can be anything you care for and limited only to the instruments you have available within your software. You can send program changes within a track which will change the instrument or patch to another one.
But no luck at all, so far. The manual coming with the Keystation is frustratingly basic, in this regard — thus adding considerably to already great confusion. But what I want is to be able to play a few notes here and there even when I'm in the middle of doing something completely different. If you want your Mac to be part of the system, you'll need to leave your Mac on running the software that is producing the sounds at all times, but that doesn't seem to match a "simple always-on piano". If you still want to use your Mac, I recommend you to don't leave the sampler software running all time.
Just run it when you need it. There are many lightweight AU hosts that you can use to run your samplers, synths, and other instruments. There are devices designed to do this. You'll find them as sound modules, sampler modules, or synth modules.
It is available for Windows, Mac and Linux. You could run the stand-alone app in the background all the time without needing to have a resource-intensive DAW or VST host running. Apple provides a free lightweight application called "AU Lab". It is not installed by default. Among other places you can get it at: Audio Units are the standard for instrument and effect plugins in the OSX world. So you will also need a piano audio unit. It's possible that you'll find the standard GarageBand piano is an audio unit which you can access from AU Lab, but if not you'll need to find a piano audio unit you like.
A Google search for "audio unit piano" reveals several, ranging from free to very expensive. Of course, you're not limited to piano sounds, and some there will be AUs that are less memory and CPU intensive than a realistic piano simulation. Find an Audio Unit plugin that makes the sound you want. However this is a reasonable amount of trouble to go to, when it seems to me that simply leaving GarageBand running would do the job. Leave it open on a song with only one track, a piano track.
GarageBand takes a while to load, but if it's not recording, playing back, or monitoring a real instrument, then its CPU load should be minimal, and it should not be doing disk IO. Although its memory footprint is large, most of it will be swapped out to disk, leaving only the blocks necessary to handle piano playing in RAM.
Indeed, if you work your Mac hard with other memory-intensive tasks, then try playing piano, you'll notice a delay while it brings those blocks back from swap. Well its not instant but I use software on windows called cantabile. Its ment for live performance where you make instrument arrangements. I have a couple of projects with various virtual instruments configured and shortcuts on my desktop.
If I want to practice I double click the project, power on the keyboard and then can play in a few second. I have everything on a ssd so that helps dramatically in loading time. I am really satisfied with this solution and guess that a similar setup must be available on mac. Then have your external speakers connected to the mixer.
Have your Mac run a line into the mixer.
Step 2: Setting up your MIDI system
This turns your Mac sounds into a simple line in, and you can raise or lower levels on the mixer. Just a little 4 channel one is all you need. Also, your volume knob on your keyboard will turn your piano, or whatever sound you are running from your keyboard up down or obviously, off if you want it or are working in Logic, garage band, whichever. Another option if you happen to already use Google Chrome is just using a "web audio" synth of some kind.
These are virtual instruments written in JS that run in a web browser. There are a lot of demos around and some of them support using a MIDI controller. For instance here's one that emulates a DX You won't get the greatest performance or latency, so it's really not for serious work. But if it's just to "play a few notes here and there", it may be just what you need given that you can just keep a browser tab open or click a bookmark to get to it. The one caveat, besides the performance, is that only Google Chrome and other browsers based on the Blink browser engine support web MIDI so far.
Based on previous posts, I was about to give it up and just use Garageband. But GMP is doing exactly what I wanted: This is fairly space-hungry for something not actively contributing to life--but I won't leave it on all the time. It's up and running very quickly, so no big deal. Oh, and it stays available even when the screen times out--When it's on, it's on.