MIDI Remote Control Presets

Save MIDI Remote Control configurations in P5.

Original P5 Forum Source: MIDI Remote Control Presets

By b rock

Let's proceed under the assumption that you have a control surface which can save its own settings as multiple templates.

Think of the stored controller templates as General settings. You might have one for mixdown, another for synth patch programming, one for drum programming, etc. and have similar enough needs for composition with synths to have a single one for that purpose, or maybe a few more (one for each go-to synth). Set up each controller template to transmit a unique set of MIDI messages specific to that template. You may have run out of knobs [is it 24?], but each of those can transmit a different MIDI message in each template. So now you can shift your entire remote configuration by just swapping out a controller template.

On to the P5 end: You only have one Save as Template readily available, so that has to be arranged as the most basic of all; a setup that you'll use most often. You don't want to conflict with anything else here, so this might be your mixdown template on the Project5 side of things. Maybe eight blank tracks with level, panning and aux/master control. Those MIDI Remote settings will be stored in P5's template, and recalled in a File/New Project from Template. If you find this limiting, you can adjust your settings and Save them as a regular Project file [.p5p], then File/Open when you need it. Name it something appropriate, like 16-Track Template.p5p to avoid any searching later on.

Now the Device Chains contain the specifics. I've opened up every synth that I own and (at first) not touched a setting. I'd like to keep all of the presets, etc. just as they've come from the 'factory' intact. Then just assign all of the MIDI messages that you've prepared from your general controller template for performance/composition. Do nothing else, and save it as a Device Chain. The next time that you want to use the synth, Replace/Insert from Device Chain instead of Replace/Insert Instrument, and all of your assignments will be set to go immediately.

You might want to set up sub-folders in P5's Device Chain folder for each synth, and store a performance, programming, with/without FX, etc. Device Chain file; each one corresponding to the original sister template in your BCR. You can also have a basic synth chain; one with commonly-used effects for that synth; still another with the Arp settings stored., and they'll all be under that synth's sub-folder.

Now you're at the point where you can call up any combination of synths for a project, have them automatically remote-controlled, and still have no worries that one setup will confilct with any other one. With this setup, you can flow from patch-tweaking to performance/composition to mixdown to mastering all by switching among controller templates.

I know that this sounds like a PITA, but it's worth the trouble from then on. You don't have to do it all at once; just attack the needs as they come up, but have a plan as to exactly how you want your final setup to be. You might have used the general purpose controllers in MIDI for your eight input levels. Mark that down, and use something else on the next controller template. Then bind those physical controls [sending a source message] to the destination parameters in a Device Chain that you want to control, and eventually you'll have everything just the way you want it, in a repeatable and remember-able[?] process.

Some common controls are found in almost every synth: things like the Mod Wheel, Sustain, Pitch Bend, etc. Try not to use these messages for anything out of the ordinary, but you can use that same message across synths for the same purpose. The problem with that is that you'll open up the Mod depth on more than one synth at the same time if they're both loaded. That's where port and MIDI channel configurations come into play. You can segregate two Mod Wheel messages over 16 different channels and/or whatever input ports are installed, and store that MIDI channel in your controller template [I assume] and the Device Chain as well.

One thing to note: you can control more than one destination in MIDI Remote Control with the same Mapped Source. This can be both an advantage & a disadvantage. You may or may not want two, or eight, or 16 parameters all responding to the same physical control knob. But once you use up a Contol Source, it's "intercepted" from it's normal routing (except for velocity), and can't be used in P5 in a 'normal' way. For example, if you map a MIDI Note like C5, you won't hear that note anymore in your synth.

The content provided on this web site is public information which was originally posted in the Cakewalk User Forums and on the old Project5 Wiki. Project5™ and Cakewalk™ are registered trademarks of Cakewalk, Inc. Other product names or companies names may be trademarks of their respective companies whether marked as such or not. Portions of this web site are copyright © 2017 Robert J. Hammond ( A member of the Technetos family of web sites ).