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What is the difference be tween MIDI IN and MIDI OUT
Old 12th November 2009
Gear Head

Thread Starter
What is the difference be tween MIDI IN and MIDI OUT

MIDI IN is to play and record your instruments, so what does MIDI OUT mean? Also the same goes for headphones. Headphones IN is to plug in your headphones and listen to music, so what does HEADPHONES OUT mean? And does this IN and OUT mean all the same when dealing with the recording world?
Old 12th November 2009
Gear Nut
It depends what hardware its on.

On a module like a synth, MIDI OUT is where the MIDI signal comes from, sending data to say, a sequencer for explanations purpose.
MIDI IN, on the synth, would be where it takes MIDI data from external hardware, for instance a controller keyboard, or a sequencer.

However this is reversed on other hardware, say a MIDI interface connected to a sequencer. MIDI OUT would go to the MIDI IN on a synth, so you can control the synth.
MIDI IN, would be where MIDI data goes into to the device, say from a controller keyboard.

So lets put this into practice, why would we use these?

Say I have a synth with a keyboard, and a second module which has no keys. I plug the MIDI OUT of my main keyboard, into the MIDI IN on the receiving module. Now I can control the module with my keyboard.


I come to record a section, which is too fast for me too play. I'll connect the MIDI OUT of my interface into the MIDI IN on my synth. I'll connect the AUDIO outputs of my synth into my interface. Now I can sequence the part I can't play with my software, and record the audio while it's being played for me.

Of course you can do FAR more, but this should explain it for you.
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