MPC X & MPC Live Forum: Support and discussion for the MPC X & MPC Live, Akai's current generation of standalone MPCs.
By CharlesRandolph Mon Dec 31, 2018 3:22 pm
ralphyartis' wrote:I think I may have came up with a decent workaround for not having subgroups in the mpc live standalone. It involves using drum programs as your bussses. I know it's not perfect. Let me know if there's any flaw in my thinking.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qWmkBiuKxcA


In reference to your video.

When creating your compositions using the MPC. It's faster to just make separate programs for your drums and samples while creating the beat.

Create a drum program 1
Assign drum samples to the pads
Assign it to Track 1
Create the pattern


Create a drum program 2
Assign sound samples to the pad
Assign it to Track 2
Create the pattern


Create a keygroup program 3
Assign sound samples to the pad
Assign it to Track 3
Create the pattern


Doing it this way, is faster and you'll have a lot less house cleaning to do at the end.
By Elektrobolt Mon Dec 31, 2018 6:28 pm
Danoc wrote:PDC :-)
Alright, so obviously I and many others have gone over the rather lacking MIDI implementation, but there is one aspect that I don't see much talk about. Which is the ability to use an external MIDI interface (or more than one for that matter). This is really equivalent to using external MIDI devices, so there is not really any difference just because it would be an interface.

There is MIDI over BT (bluetooth), WiFi and USB3. Strangely enough they only allow inputs for all of them, so you are left with only the 4 MIDI Output Ports for MIDI data (on the X). Again, to be standalone, sure I'll buy that, but a studio centerpiece needs more. So what I'd like to see is them adding USB3-MIDI Output Ports, so that a class compliant USB3 MIDI interface could be used with the MPC. THAT would rock.

The extension to this is naturally that we need the 'multi-timbral' (multi mode in Akai speech, according to Dan) MIDI inputs to be able to organize all of it.

Anyways, another topic that MIDI gets involved in is automation.

Currently we have an insert dialog for MIDI data, one message/event at a time. I mean it works, but it is so painful to use. Why not have a range insert dialog, with curves and shapes, etc., because adding single messages really only works if you use things like Program Change or perhaps hard panning (only Left, Center, Right) but even that, when you want sounds bouncing, would be cumbersome to add. The dialog does not remember any parameters the second time around, so you got to edit every single parameter each time. They could put an intern coder on a range insert dialog. Enough MIDI for now. ;)

Ok, so what about using the 4 sample layers in various modes, the original (like it works now), but then add the ability to mix two (or more I suppose) in other ways than just literal 'layers', say cross (a'la 80's Roland)/ring modulation, or amplitude modulation. Both are relatively cheap, in terms of processing. Now imagine this implemented in addition to the current layering parameters and so for example velocity would impact the modulation outcomes. Could be a very interesting addition, for relatively cheap.

Another thing I've been wanting to explore, is a multi-mode filter effect, where the output values (e.g. LP, HP, BP, N) would be mixed according to some algorithms and spread across the stereo field. This would generate a spatial effect that could be made very snazzy.

I've tried to pick things that are either atomic (can be developed on its own) or what seems to me as possible to implement with relatively small changes (except for MIDI, but that's because basic aspects are MISSING, and not features, IMO) from my POV. I may be wrong. And there are nicer things that would be cool to have, but seems more involved in terms of the MPC.
By CharlesRandolph Mon Dec 31, 2018 9:31 pm
Elektrobolt wrote:There is MIDI over BT (bluetooth), WiFi and USB3. Strangely enough they only allow inputs for all of them, so you are left with only the 4 MIDI Output Ports for MIDI data (on the X). Again, to be standalone, sure I'll buy that, but a studio centerpiece needs more. So what I'd like to see is them adding USB3-MIDI Output Ports, so that a class compliant USB3 MIDI interface could be used with the MPC. THAT would rock.


If they did this, why stop there? Allow the ability to connect a USB3 Audio Interface for additional Audio Inputs/Outputs.
User avatar
By zangetsu01 Mon Dec 31, 2018 9:48 pm
toodee wrote:So, I read this thread a couple of times to make sure : am I really the only one who thinks the most incredible/important missing feature still is the inability to edit automations ? I'd have that over anything else, including portamento, disk streaming, or bug fixing. And wayyyyyyy before any of the other nice-to-have features mentioned.
Is the MPC just used by beat makers who do not need a lot of parameter automation to produce variety ? Or only used by prodigies who can dial in perfect automation on dozens of parameters in one take with that perfect loop at the end of the sequence ? Or has everyone bought an MPC Live/X just to use it as controller for the software ? :hmmm:


I agree.. Automation..!!
User avatar
By ralphyartis' Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:16 pm
CharlesRandolph wrote:
ralphyartis' wrote:I think I may have came up with a decent workaround for not having subgroups in the mpc live standalone. It involves using drum programs as your bussses. I know it's not perfect. Let me know if there's any flaw in my thinking.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qWmkBiuKxcA


In reference to your video.

When creating your compositions using the MPC. It's faster to just make separate programs for your drums and samples while creating the beat.

Create a drum program 1
Assign drum samples to the pads
Assign it to Track 1
Create the pattern


Create a drum program 2
Assign sound samples to the pad
Assign it to Track 2
Create the pattern


Create a keygroup program 3
Assign sound samples to the pad
Assign it to Track 3
Create the pattern


Doing it this way, is faster and you'll have a lot less house cleaning to do at the end.


I appreciate you checking out the video and replying. I used to work the way your saying until I started finger drumming. Even if I was playing seperate programs/keygroups I'd resample them and put them on the same pad bank so I can fingerdrum. This also helps me come up with arrangements and is lot more interes to me.

So I put it out there because my mind is more on the mix process rather than work flow speed. I think we do have subgroups/busses in the mpc live Standalone if we just look at drum programs from a different perspective. It's a workaround and my question is what may be some of the limitations of it, if anyone has some ideas. Anyways you're all welcome for the juice. :smoker:
By CharlesRandolph Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:44 am
ralphyartis' wrote:I appreciate you checking out the video and replying. I used to work the way your saying until I started finger drumming. Even if I was playing seperate programs/keygroups I'd resample them and put them on the same pad bank so I can fingerdrum. This also helps me come up with arrangements and is lot more interes to me.

So I put it out there because my mind is more on the mix process rather than work flow speed. I think we do have subgroups/busses in the mpc live Standalone if we just look at drum programs from a different perspective. It's a workaround and my question is what may be some of the limitations of it, if anyone has some ideas. Anyways you're all welcome for the juice. :smoker:


Perhaps I missed where you stated in your video. that it was your finger drumming program setup. As far as the wording goes, programs is Akai Pro terminology for groups/busses.

From the video with your mixing, it seems like your over compensating for your lack of proper audio monitors. Seems like you'll get a better reference on the music. If get the monitor off the desk and bring the tweeters ear height, in an equilateral triangle.

I noticed that you a have small side mixer. Does it have a meter? If yes, are the meters on the mixer, unity gained to the mixer in the MPC LIVE?
User avatar
By Fanu Tue Jan 01, 2019 9:35 am
toodee wrote:So, I read this thread a couple of times to make sure : am I really the only one who thinks the most incredible/important missing feature still is the inability to edit automations ? I'd have that over anything else, including portamento, disk streaming, or bug fixing. And wayyyyyyy before any of the other nice-to-have features mentioned.
Is the MPC just used by beat makers who do not need a lot of parameter automation to produce variety ? Or only used by prodigies who can dial in perfect automation on dozens of parameters in one take with that perfect loop at the end of the sequence ? Or has everyone bought an MPC Live/X just to use it as controller for the software ? :hmmm:


I agree.

I'm kicking 2019 off by thinking what gear I need and what to sell.
Just sold the Octatrack, for example (monophonic tracks being a big reason). Almost put the MPC Live up for sale, but then thought, it'll *probably* get improved, and automation editing and PDC are the biggies I'm waiting for.
Thing is…in my music, I like to do a lot of little automation tricks. TBH that's still the number one reason I do most of my stuff with Ableton Live…many things, like automation, are just so super convenient. It's hard to beat that. But I feel MPC Live doesn't even try.
Clunky standalone automation is one of the reasons I'm still not using the Live a ton…while I could. To me, it's pretty close to being good, but some vital stuff is lacking, still.

Frisbi wrote:Play them live, record them, here you go.


Well, yeah, you could disable editing midi notes and say the same thing about playing beats: if you don't get them right on the first pass and are unhappy about it later, just record it again. But no...one gotta be able to edit it.
User avatar
By toodee Wed Jan 02, 2019 11:19 am
Fanu wrote:Just sold the Octatrack, for example (monophonic tracks being a big reason).


I must have misunderstood you, what was your issue with the Octatrack ? The 8 audio tracks on mine are stereo... :wink:
I own both devices but they are good for different purposes, IMO.

Fanu wrote:Thing is…in my music, I like to do a lot of little automation tricks. TBH that's still the number one reason I do most of my stuff with Ableton Live…many things, like automation, are just so super convenient. It's hard to beat that. But I feel MPC Live doesn't even try.
Clunky standalone automation is one of the reasons I'm still not using the Live a ton…while I could. To me, it's pretty close to being good, but some vital stuff is lacking, still.

Frisbi wrote:Play them live, record them, here you go.


Well, yeah, you could disable editing midi notes and say the same thing about playing beats: if you don't get them right on the first pass and are unhappy about it later, just record it again. But no...one gotta be able to edit it.


Exactly. I can record automations in real time, but it's not as fine a control as I'd like it to be. Taking the example of my Octatrack for example, i can live record, and then edit automation per parameter and per step. On the MPC, I need to either delete automations completely for all parameters, or go through a cumbersome pass on the whole sequence while maintaining the q-link and erase. I end up trying to get it right the first time, which usually involves doing the same thing several times and pressing undo, or giving up and settling on automation in DAW or controller mode instead. :cry:
User avatar
By Fanu Wed Jan 02, 2019 7:20 pm
toodee wrote:I must have misunderstood you, what was your issue with the Octatrack ? The 8 audio tracks on mine are stereo... :wink:
I own both devices but they are good for different purposes, IMO.


Yes, stereo tracks, but their playback is monophonic (as in not polyphonic…only its midi tracks are polyphonic).
I.e., can't play a chord with a sample or play kick and hihat at the same time on a track. Was a bit of a downer.


Frisbi wrote:Exactly. I can record automations in real time, but it's not as fine a control as I'd like it to be. Taking the example of my Octatrack for example, i can live record, and then edit automation per parameter and per step. On the MPC, I need to either delete automations completely for all parameters, or go through a cumbersome pass on the whole sequence while maintaining the q-link and erase. I end up trying to get it right the first time, which usually involves doing the same thing several times and pressing undo, or giving up and settling on automation in DAW or controller mode instead. :cry:


Yeah, real editing of automation with the MPC does require a computer…no two ways about it.
User avatar
By ralphyartis' Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:14 am
CharlesRandolph wrote:
ralphyartis' wrote:I appreciate you checking out the video and replying. I used to work the way your saying until I started finger drumming. Even if I was playing seperate programs/keygroups I'd resample them and put them on the same pad bank so I can fingerdrum. This also helps me come up with arrangements and is lot more interes to me.

So I put it out there because my mind is more on the mix process rather than work flow speed. I think we do have subgroups/busses in the mpc live Standalone if we just look at drum programs from a different perspective. It's a workaround and my question is what may be some of the limitations of it, if anyone has some ideas. Anyways you're all welcome for the juice. :smoker:


Perhaps I missed where you stated in your video. that it was your finger drumming program setup. As far as the wording goes, programs is Akai Pro terminology for groups/busses.

From the video with your mixing, it seems like your over compensating for your lack of proper audio monitors. Seems like you'll get a better reference on the music. If get the monitor off the desk and bring the tweeters ear height, in an equilateral triangle.

I noticed that you a have small side mixer. Does it have a meter? If yes, are the meters on the mixer, unity gained to the mixer in the MPC LIVE?


You're right I dont think I state this in the vid. I never knew that about the wording by Akai, well seems I'm on the right track.

Thanks for all the sound advice. Do you mean literally off the desk or saying just higher so that they are ear height?

The mixer on the side I use to input my keyboard. Turntable, and mic for sampling into the MPC, so I don't think what you are asking applies. ?
By CharlesRandolph Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:36 am
ralphyartis' wrote:You're right I dont think I state this in the vid. I never knew that about the wording by Akai, well seems I'm on the right track.

Thanks for all the sound advice. Do you mean literally off the desk or saying just higher so that they are ear height?

The mixer on the side I use to input my keyboard. Turntable, and mic for sampling into the MPC, so I don't think what you are asking applies. ?


I suggest both. Tweeter should be ear height and get your speakers off the desk, so that you're not hearing the resonance of the desk. This really affects the sound especially in the low end. Basically everything on your desk is vibrating. Buy or Build some speaker stands.
By Eyalc Fri Jan 04, 2019 5:15 pm
CharlesRandolph wrote:
I suggest both. Tweeter should be ear height and get your speakers off the desk, so that you're not hearing the resonance of the desk. This really affects the sound especially in the low end. Basically everything on your desk is vibrating. Buy or Build some speaker stands.


This.
User avatar
By zangetsu01 Fri Jan 04, 2019 10:53 pm
@Fanu & Toodee,

I agree with both of you. I use my X only in controller mode so the following is a little bit of topic but I've learned to live with most of the MPC's shortcomings as it is today. I've got workarounds for most of the missing things:

1) The built in vst's are like meh > Use 3rd party vst's (duh..!!)

2) Only 4 vst slots per track > insert Bluecat audio and have at least 16

3) No sidechaining > use Sidekick 5

4) XYFX Tape stop (Is it supposed to work like this? or am I doing it wrong?) > studiolinked tape stop

5) Track freeze to conserve some extra CPU power > Akai came out with bounce to Audio track but it's broken (24bit/16 bit) So I just upgraded my CPU from i5 to i7. Now I can have my mastering plugins on my sub and master busses and have plenty of power left.

*The list goes on and on but I can live with all that, I also stoped using vst's that really need PDC.*

There is just one thing that keeps bugging me..

Automation Lanes... :worthy:

Why isn't it still not implemented. Automation and complex vst's are 90% of the reason that I have to turn away to the computer screen.

Just give us automation and I can live happy with my MPC X cause there is no more need for all of the fancy things I wanted before.

@Dan/Akai please in 2.4 or 2.5 give us Automation lanes. And while your at it don't forget about the Sub and Master busses. The need it too.. :wink:
By CharlesRandolph Sat Jan 05, 2019 1:53 am
zangetsu01 wrote:@Fanu & Toodee,

I agree with both of you. I use my X only in controller mode so the following is a little bit of topic but I've learned to live with most of the MPC's shortcomings as it is today. I've got workarounds for most of the missing things:

1) The built in vst's are like meh > Use 3rd party vst's (duh..!!)

2) Only 4 vst slots per track > insert Bluecat audio and have at least 16

3) No sidechaining > use Sidekick 5

4) XYFX Tape stop (Is it supposed to work like this? or am I doing it wrong?) > studiolinked tape stop

5) Track freeze to conserve some extra CPU power > Akai came out with bounce to Audio track but it's broken (24bit/16 bit) So I just upgraded my CPU from i5 to i7. Now I can have my mastering plugins on my sub and master busses and have plenty of power left.

*The list goes on and on but I can live with all that, I also stoped using vst's that really need PDC.*

There is just one thing that keeps bugging me..

Automation Lanes... :worthy:

Why isn't it still not implemented. Automation and complex vst's are 90% of the reason that I have to turn away to the computer screen.

Just give us automation and I can live happy with my MPC X cause there is no more need for all of the fancy things I wanted before.

@Dan/Akai please in 2.4 or 2.5 give us Automation lanes. And while your at it don't forget about the Sub and Master busses. The need it too.. :wink:



Are you doing all these workout around in the MPC Software DAW? If yes, why not just use a much more capable Software DAW?