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2 Nanokontrol 2's, iPad (1 or 2?), Behringer BCF2000, Battle of Mixers Control Surfaces
Old 31st August 2011
  #1
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Schwarzwald's Avatar
2 Nanokontrol 2's, iPad (1 or 2?), Behringer BCF2000, Battle of Mixers

Now, for the longest I've been using Nanokontrol's, not JUST because of the novelty, although they are quite novel, but also because of the extreme efficiency and flexibility packed into the damn things.

With the release of the nanokontrol 2, alot of features I wanted were added (scene memory, record button, etc) So I thought, awesome, I'll use the 1 nanokontrol I have now for master bus FX control, and then put 2 nanokontrol 2's on both sides of it to control the mixer in ableton.

This was all just to hold me off until I got ahold to a control surface currently being built by a fellow GS member.

THEN I THOUGHT...**** it, why not try out a BCF, those motors would come in handy, the problem? BCF's are ugly, don't have 3 buttons for record, solo, and mute, and I hate bank switching. However, I did think about using the top row of encoders push function as an "arm for recording" button.

After talking with my friend Russell, who just lost his laptop and is now relying on an ipad, I discussed, jokingly, about how I could save alot of money and just buy 2 ipads and be done with it. After discussing alittle more he told me to do it, but I explained to him I needed a tactile feel and thats the reason I use controllers in the first place. They don't make any sound, however they give you a feel, a physical touch sensation that connects you to what you're doing. He then told me that he completely understood, but that since I was strapped for cash, and that NOT using the mouse was a bigger point that faders and knobs, the ipad was a good choice for me.

I'd never thought about it that way...

However, it took me a year to realize how I wanted to create my setup, those 2 nanokontrols were deliberated upon through all the us-2400's, and MCU's, and command 8's, and all that crap for a whole year. So were the BCF's, which were my 2nd choice if nanokontrol 2's received some ridiculous bad review. Then this ipad idea hops in my head and it throws me off.

I was unsure about ipads (I hate apple products, don't believe artist should be treated as an exploitable market) and despite all the talk about the on here, regarded them, and all touch screen devices, as fads. However...once I opened up touchOSC and saw what it was about and started creating templates I was, for all intents and purposes, BLOWN THE **** AWAY.

So...
Heres where you guys come in.

For all you who've used ipads, does it replace the tacticle feel (or even improve upon?) of a real control surface. Do you feel involved when moving the encoders and faders, etc? Secondly, how sensitive is the screen? Will I feel a lag, or have to touch it multiple times to get it to do what I want? Lastly, what other hardware would I need to send MIDI data, or create a link between my computer or whatever, in short, what do I need to set this up so it runs well. I heard line6 or somebody was making some midi connector for it. I'm not trying to run a keyboard on it, I just need it to sit on my desk and run as a stationary control surface. Lastly, Ipad 1 or 2?

To all who hate ipads, tell me why, what went wrong, and which other option I should stick with.
Old 31st August 2011
  #2
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wax808's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Schwarzwald View Post

So...
Heres where you guys come in.

For all you who've used ipads, does it replace the tacticle feel (or even improve upon?) of a real control surface. Do you feel involved when moving the encoders and faders, etc? Secondly, how sensitive is the screen? Will I feel a lag, or have to touch it multiple times to get it to do what I want? Lastly, what other hardware would I need to send MIDI data, or create a link between my computer or whatever, in short, what do I need to set this up so it runs well. I heard line6 or somebody was making some midi connector for it. I'm not trying to run a keyboard on it, I just need it to sit on my desk and run as a stationary control surface. Lastly, Ipad 1 or 2?

To all who hate ipads, tell me why, what went wrong, and which other option I should stick with.
An iPad wont replace the tactile feel of encoders or faders, it can however be an insanely powerful midi controller using MIDI Touch, Touch OSC, or something like it.

For example, on my Moog LP I can't control filter cutoff and resonance at the same time. If I make an XY pad in MIDI touch I can though, in fact I can combine any parameters and use it. It's very fast and lag free if you aren't going through a wi-fi translation.

MIDI Touch on the iPad is also awesome for very complex synths with limited interfaces like a Blofeld.

To connect I use the Camera Connection Kit and go USB directly into my Moog. I also sometimes use a M-Audio MIDIsport Uno to connect to other synths that dont use USB. My MIDI chain looks like this:

iPad--->Moog LP<--->Roland MV8000---->Micro-Q rack----> Korg TR Rack

The MV8000 captures all the midi data sent out of the iPad and the Moog and forwards it on to the others. If I'm using a program like StepPolyArp or MIDI Touch the MV8000 captures and records everything.

As far as which iPad, go for the iPad 2. It's much more powerful and the iPad 1 wont run some apps like Garage Band. The price between the two isn't that much different now.
Old 1st September 2011
  #3
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Schwarzwald's Avatar
So you'd recommend a MIDI interface to connect into the iPad in order to bypass the lag experienced by WiFi users? I looked up the camera connection kit, nifty little thing, is it USB 2.0 and are you aware of any firewire versions?

What I'm thinking still is I'd need a midi port available on the ipad device in order to connect it to my audio interface to get the bast midi transmission into the DAW on my laptop? What would be the work arounds for this approach? Unless I can transmit midi data through USB with the ipad?
Old 1st September 2011
  #4
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Euphonix/Avid Mix(s)+Control. They have gotten a bit of a bad rep due to some people having bad luck with the build quality. I have had them for 2-3 years now and can not live without them. Pricier, true - but you get real faders and deep integration with Logic or ProTools.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #5
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wax808's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Schwarzwald View Post
So you'd recommend a MIDI interface to connect into the iPad in order to bypass the lag experienced by WiFi users? I looked up the camera connection kit, nifty little thing, is it USB 2.0 and are you aware of any firewire versions?

What I'm thinking still is I'd need a midi port available on the ipad device in order to connect it to my audio interface to get the bast midi transmission into the DAW on my laptop? What would be the work arounds for this approach? Unless I can transmit midi data through USB with the ipad?
No firewire, and I'm sure it's USB 2.0 And I don't know much about the wifi lag since I've never used it. But for what I do the USB works great and is lag free.

And yes, you can transmit MIDI data right through a USB cable, MIDI workarounds are easy, worst case scenario is buying a hub.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #6
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Schwarzwald's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by wax808 View Post
No firewire, and I'm sure it's USB 2.0 And I don't know much about the wifi lag since I've never used it. But for what I do the USB works great and is lag free.

And yes, you can transmit MIDI data right through a USB cable, MIDI workarounds are easy, worst case scenario is buying a hub.
Welp, sounds like I'm sold.
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