Mackie Control Implementation – Severe Limitations

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This topic contains 16 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of  Anonymous 4 years, 5 months ago.

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  • #60045
    Profile photo of
    Anonymous

    Hello,

    I just purchased a QU-32 and was very excited to get it integrated into my setup and multiple DAW.
    It was very difficult trying to understand the Mackie setup to begin with, however after several hours of playing I was able to get this working.

    After finally getting DAW control, I was very disappointed that there was such a limitation on how the QU-32 interfaced with Mackie Implementation and control.

    I almost expected that the QU-32 would switch to a “dumb” DAW control which ported directly with a MIDI mode, or the Mackie Control Mode.
    There are very many things I would to see in the future and hopefully keep my respect, and have high regards to Allen & Heath as a company and their products.

    Mackie Control should implement, naming of tracks, Pan control, many options for soft-key integration for different functions or generic MIDI mapping for DAW control/Plugins. Top Knobs of the console should allow mapping, or integration for Plugin control or local DAW GEQ control. Having a custom MIDI mapping control for these functions in a clear and precise mode would make this console shine and in my belief a staple DAW controller as well as an in-depth live mixing console.

    I really hope this is taken into consideration, and looked at for integration.
    I very much am proud of my console, with some disappointment in the capability.

    Please add more in-depth Mackie Control, and custom-ease MIDI Mapping.

    -Sephult

    #60047
    Profile photo of NZdave
    NZdave
    Participant

    Yes, users are wanting more midi within Mackie Control mode.. especially on the QU32
    Did you get your custom layer assigned ok?

    Are you using PC or Mac?

    daveNZ

    #60049
    Profile photo of Andreas
    Andreas
    Moderator

    If you need more control, you’re free to not use the HUI/MackieControl emulation but communicate with the Qu directly (using MIDI protocol). The HUI/MackieControl protocol is a very limited standard and only allows to control faders and pan. And since we do not have a Pan per channel but only a pan in channel strip, we can’t even use pan with that emulation.
    Sorry, there is nothing A&H can do to circumvent these limits through “DAW Control”.

    #60050
    Profile photo of
    Anonymous

    Thank you for the replies,

    XYZ,
    I did get the fader, select, solo, and mute controls to work finally. I am using PC with Sonar Platinum, Live 9, and Sensomusic Hollyhock.

    Andreas,
    I appreciate your reply, and I do understand limitations in software development. I do think there are some creative ways that this could have been more expanded on to include more immediate controls and functions like the pan or track label. My assumption coming forward and purchasing was to expect more. An example would be to associate the selected track and pan (as is done in normal QU32 operation), and allow the knob to send the appropriate mackie command by selected channel. I do see from a software development perspective (I work with SW on a day-to-day basis), and I am now prepared to invest some time in custom mapping things. I have done this various times before, in implementing Mackie Control for other touch-interfaces. I just would have assumed that there would be more reach for some creative solutions and enhancements. I do appreciate your response truly, I just challenge the response because I do think there are some things that could be done. I will take your advice and manually map and go that route, I am just hoping there are further enhancements in the future.

    I have not really had a chance to explore this much more, because as I am finding now that I am running into the “common” samplerate slip/ BIT Reduction noise that occurs using the USB B Streaming. I will have to invest some time in that first before I can invest anymore time in DAW control. I am hoping that I can find a workaround, and hopefully help with some info to A&H to help alleviate.

    -s

    #60068
    Profile photo of SteffenR
    SteffenR
    Participant

    First of all, the QU is not an universal studio solution. No chance to change this…
    it is and will ever be limited to 24bit and 48kHz
    sorry for that

    but to control your DAW is an different task…
    maybe your DAW has a MIDI learn function to quickly assign parameters to controls

    #60071
    Profile photo of
    Anonymous

    I’m fine with 48kHz 24bit, no problem with that.
    Was no concern there.

    Was just disappointed that the control implementation was not more complete/advanced.
    I know MIDI quite well, and will be able to get there…just a lot less than I was thinking was implemented.

    -s

    #60144
    Profile photo of Tweaker
    Tweaker
    Participant

    I’m kind of wondering, Why this cant be fixed? It partly mislead me into the purchase..! I can get all the channel strip knobs to mimic just one of the four that popup in Studio one 2 pro learn feature, except the pan knob, and it only goes to 1 o’clock, and in Digital Performer 8.0, pretty much the same thing, but all channel strip knobs make the pan in DP jump left to 10 o’clock, no matter which one is assigned, then as I turn any of them no matter which one/ how far or direction, my pan in DP will step one notch back to center, until it hits center, then just one slight turn of any knob it will jump back to 10 o’clock. Now in Samplitude Pro X Suite, I just completely gave up. I couldn’t get anything out of the knobs. I’m talking Hours/Days/Weeks… Maybe these need a 2 year warranty. LOL,,, I sold my Behringer X32 (which I never had any problems) to upgrade, and ended up pulling the cover of my old Tascam DM-24, thinking “maybe that Old SOB wasn’t that hard to configure after all. LOL!
    As of now, I’ve a Love/Hate relationship with my Qu-32, The workflow isn’t happening, nor much of
    anything else. I still have Hope.., Don’t I?

    Oh, One more thing, The having to unplug the USB and replug after bootup, ,,,, Come on Guy’s, My God! Fractal Audio Systems, do none stop. Killer FW updates, for years now… Is someone slacking there?

    #60165
    Profile photo of Tweaker
    Tweaker
    Participant

    Ok , here’s what I found, The encoders, etc are using NRPN MIDI, I played around with MIDIOX last night and could control any function of the Qu-32, including navigating the LCD with MIDIOX, even put it in shutdown mode, I just need away/program to convert NRPN to RPN, I read were Sonar, Cubase, can handle this Format with midi learn. A&H should be able to supply the NRPN code list,,,, But I’m not up to learning how to program midi, I do good just to figure out my DAW’s.

    Here’s somewhere to start. https://carillonaudio.wordpress.com/2012/05/18/midipipe-tutorial-2/

    This below is Just telling what the NRPN, is.

    MIDI NRPN , pronounced “Nerpin” (Non Registered Parameter Numbers) are assignable MIDI messages.
    They are assignable in a similar way that control changes are, but with a slightly different convention.
    The MIDI NRPN message is a combination of 2 control change messages – 98 and 99. MIDI controllers such as the Novation SL MkII refers to this combination of control change messages as simply the NRPN message (and treats it as one message) and allows you to assign the “NRPN” to any slider or knob on the controller.
    Once the NRPN is assigned you must give it a specific number. This number is a combination of its MSB (0-127) and LSB (0-127) assignment . These two numbers can be anything you want. These two numbers combined give a total of 16,384 possible assignable NRPN messages. That is 16,384 assignable MIDI messages for your controller or device. You assign these two numbers by simply choosing them and dialing them in in the respective field on your controllers operating system.
    Not all hardware module respond to NRPN’s the same, and not all modules let you pick and choose what NRPN’s it responds to. If you have a hardware module that responds to NRPN’s you might have to look in its manual to find what NRPNs are assignable to what parameters of your device and then conform your controllers output to send those specific NRPNs.

    #60168
    Profile photo of
    Anonymous

    Hi Tweaker!

    Well the info is in the downloads. When I get some time, I can work on it.
    Problem is I have heavy work and a side project to work on first.
    It might be several weeks out before I can start looking at it.

    That’s why I was quite bummed the encoders weren’t even mapped and more snapshot button midi functions without programming, something I really believe that should have been implemented in some way.

    -s

    #60170
    Profile photo of Andreas
    Andreas
    Moderator

    Ok, just to repeat same statements already written here and in several other threads:
    – The HUI/MackieControl protocol is pretty limited. Since this is sort of legacy “standard”, there is nothing A&H can do to circumvent it, since the DAW’s side of that implementation would not follow. In fact its the application which defines how the buttons and encoders of the MackieControl are mapped and uses the large LCD to visualize the current mapping to the user. The Qu does not provide dynamic labels per encoder so the user would never know what’s actually mapped.
    – The Qu mixers are fully controlable through well documented NRPN messages as documented in Qu Mixer MIDI Protocol, nothing secret.
    – If the DAW isn’t flexible enough to learn/understand the Qu’s NRPN implementation, there’s still Bome’s MidiTranslator.

    #60179
    Profile photo of Tweaker
    Tweaker
    Participant

    Hi Anreas
    Not all of us are Midi Savvy, And your telling me that basically you’ll repeat all this again….. Well I didn’t see anything above that you repeated about “The Qu mixers are fully controlable through well documented NRPN messages as documented in Qu Mixer MIDI Protocol, nothing secret.” Well Its News To Me! Anyway I do see some workarounds, Now/ someday when Ive time. I don’t recall seeing anything about “If the DAW isn’t flexible enough to learn/understand the Qu’s NRPN implementation, there’s still Bome’s MidiTranslator.” Must have missed that too.

    #60180
    Profile photo of Tweaker
    Tweaker
    Participant

    Hi sephult
    I understand about your time, I’ve sure wasted a lot getting this far. If I knew midi, did of know what to look for at the beginning, But that still doesn’t make up for a lack of, on A&H’s end. I’m just going to get on with recording for awhile, if I can remember how,,, LOL. I’ve heard it said,, “That if something sounds too good to be true, than I probably is.”
    And sephult, I know others would be grateful for a workaround, I’ve spent half the day reading about this nrpn stuff and theirs a lot of folks that got the same surprise on other controllers and midi keyboards and have had to figure out these (Pretty Necessary Workarounds) So I guess. Thanks for the reply, and I’ll keep an eye out.
    Have a good day/night. LOL

    #60185
    Profile photo of Andreas
    Andreas
    Moderator
    #60190
    Profile photo of Tweaker
    Tweaker
    Participant

    Thanks Andreas, You look familiar, Did you do some work/adds for Samplitude? If so I talked to you on the phone a few years back… Anyway, I’m one that would rather take a beating than too ask for help, and google really wasn’t much help, but did lead me to this thread, Like I had mentioned,, I’m not midi savvy but I’m more so now. LOL So not too be on your A**, I was just at my wits end, diving into a the DAW features, knowing I would find and fix the pan control, Not! Anyway, Sorry for coming off as a Prick, and now that I’ve search the forum, I see where your coming from. So My apologies there. And All’s Good Here…., maybe the next FW update could have an option for those encoder, if someone want the option for more of a Semi/Full-blown Control Surface… or a patch/template. Don’t know? Anyway I’ll carry on, And after searching/reading the forum, I’d hate too have that part of your job, LOL! and you do a good job at it.
    Good Day Sir.

    #60191
    Profile photo of
    Anonymous

    I agree, and understand.

    Like I said I just wish there was a better and more ease of Midi.
    A more flexible arrangement and profile storage for Midi mapping would be nice.
    If I would mix mackie implementation and midi control, it would be very beneficial to the user
    to be able to select different mappings, instead of a fixed Midi Implementation for controlling the mixer.
    I look at the mixer as a Master and from the perspective of this I would like to see it be the master for the
    control. I know you can use Bome, but that adds another running application, as well is a paid option…where it should be more implemented within the QU firmware. From the perspective of the snapshot buttons though…it would be nice to see more options for the mackie control whether or not it’s a limited standard. Another thing I would like is the ability to display the selected track name, I would have thought from the operation of Mackie Control that this would be standard and that the QU would have handled it.

    -s

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