Connecting Your Instruments
For Midi Quest to be able to communicate with your instrument, the MIDI IN and MIDI OUT ports of both your instrument and computer must be connected as follows:
The computer's MIDI IN port must be connected to the instrument's MIDI OUT port while the computer's MIDI OUT port must be connected to the instrument's MIDI IN port: This is called a two-way, duplex or handshaking MIDI connection.
Duplex connections mean that each instrument requires an entire MIDI interface port: While this was once an issue, multi-port USB Midi Interfaces have become very affordable in the last four years and can be had for a few hundred dollars from such great manufacturers as M-Audio (www.m-audio.com) and Edirol (www.edirol.com) to only name two.
A duplex connection can also be achieved for each of your instruments by using a patch bay: This device acts as a switchable MIDI router that can be commanded to switch a duplex connection together for each of your instruments whenever required, thereby allowing you to get by with only a single MIDI interface port.
Using a Patch Bay
First, let us be clear, a multi-port MIDI interface is NOT a patch bay. A patch bay does not have a USB connection, only MIDI ports. It is very rare for anyone to be using a patch bay these days but it you are, it will very likely be an MSB, MX-8, KMX, or A-880. If you know you are using a patch bay then this information is important. If you are using a multi-port MIDI interface it is equally important that you do not try treat it as if it were a patch bay. Either way you will be causing yourself a great deal of grief.
The tutorial assumes you are not using a patch bay. If you are, we recommend that you initially work with Midi Quest with your instruments connected directly to a MIDI interface even if it is one instrument at a time. Once you are comfortable with Midi Quest, you can integrate the patch bay into your system.
Once you have your instruments communicating properly, you can connect your patch bay and set up Midi Quest to control it. Open Preferences, click the MIDI tab and enable Patch Bay support and press OK. Once enabled, select each instrument in the Studio, open the Settings Dialog using the Settings button, choose the patch bay tab and configure the patch bay parameters.
You can obtain more information on the patch bay settings here.
JLCooper Patch Bay Warning: Due to software bugs within the MSB v1.0 patch bay, we do not recommend its use with Midi Quest. The Rev 2.0 patch bay does work properly.
Roland A-880 Patch Bay Warning: EARLY versions of the Roland A-880 patch bay have a bug which causes the A-880 to stop responding to patch change commands after SysEx has been transmitted through it. The current version of the A-880 works properly and ROM upgrades are available.
Using 1 MIDI Interface Port Without a Patch Bay
Those who plan to use Midi Quest with more than one instrument, but have no patch bay, must reconnect their MIDI cables each time SysEx is requested from a different instrument. It's a hassle but certainly a workable solution while you save your money to buy an additional MIDI interface.