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How many devices can be successfully simultaneously connected to iPad/ iOS?? DAW Software
Old 8th January 2017
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Bobby_Dazzler's Avatar

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How many devices can be successfully simultaneously connected to iPad/ iOS??

Hi All,

Been getting into this mobile setup recently, using an iPad/iOS to make music sitting around the house, chilling with family, on holidays etc. As opposed to hiding in the studio for hours on end! I understand its a personal preference, but being an old school hardware person, I prefer to use tactile hardware controllers to make/manipulate each sound. I've aimed my setup to be or act as a decent sketch pad, with "transferable" projects/ideas to the main studio if needed;

Currently running Cubasis 2, Audiobus, and have bought Arturia's Minilab mk2 and Spark LE devices. I also have an iRig Pro, and an Apple Camera Connection Kit (CCK) with lightning charger thru' input - though the iRig Pro will not function via this connection. My thread is looking to determine what can be connected simultaneously, what are the problems, and how folks have overcome/worked around them:

To highlight this, the example:
I bought the Minilab mk2 first, and used with Korg Gadget; result was plug-and-play compatibility, in terms of triggering notes, drum pads, though was disappointed that the Gadgets aren't MIDI mappable to the Minilab's VPots.

I then picked up the Spark LE and iSpark, PLUS an M-Beat powered usb hub from Altronics for $30, in the assumption that iOS's MIDI implementation would/could handle multiple simultaneous devices. ISpark and Spark LE were plug-and-play compatible, (with the Minilab mk2 still powering up, connected to the FIRST usb port, and the Spark LE in the SECOND usb port (mentioning here in case port order is a factor, after all usb is a "serial" (i.e. in-series protocol))

BUT - opening the last Korg Gadet project I'd created simultaneous with iSpark, the Gadgets' audio was audible, though no keyboard MIDI input from the Minilab mk2 caused any of the Gadget synths to sound.

As a bit of a fault finding exercise, I opened Cubasis 2 (simultaneously, not closing Korg Gadget OR iSpark), made a new template with a couple of MIDI channels, and checked in each channels' available MIDI routing/ports/devices, via the inspector strip (works just like main Cubase app). Sure enough, both Arturia MIDI devices are/were present and available, and were able to trigger GM sounds from Cubasis 2.

So back to the thread's purpose, I think it would be useful to generate some wider shared understanding of iOS' implementation of MIDI, (is it Core MIDI, same as Mac??) It's requirements, and limitations, (power reqmts for usb hubs), MIDI limits/multitimbrality, apps and app limitations (I've read somewhere that Korg ONLY allows MIDI In on Ch. 1 and multiple Gadgets cannot be configured to respond to hardware controllers/mapped MIDI messages on separate channels), successful set ups and how to get a reliable mobile rig. So,

How many MIDI controller devices has anyone successfully/reliably and simultaneously connected to an iOS device?
Which USB hub did you use?
What are the ground rules and constraints for usb connections to iPads??

Hopeully we can get a decent "reference" list to share experiences and help newcomers get going;

Cheers All!
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