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Viewing topic "Motif XS8 USB-Midi"

     
Posted on: July 18, 2023 @ 06:03 AM
dwitmotifguy
Total Posts:  8
Joined  06-30-2023
status: Newcomer

Ok, since I can’t get much response on mLan and FireWire through the XS8,
How many of you Motif XS users are using the USB-Midi driver?
From Yamaha:
“USB-MIDI Driver V3.1.4 for Win 10/8.1/8/7 (32-bit)
Windows 7?SP1,Windows 8,Windows 8.1,Windows 10

The USB-MIDI Driver is for use with Studio Manager V2 Host, Editor, PM1D Manager and DME Designer.
Be sure to use the latest versions of the software available on this Yamaha Pro Audio site.
Please download 64-bit driver when you use 64-bit Windows”

What can you do with this setup?  Record audio, send and receive Midi?  Can you sequence with this setup?
What specific DAWs work best with this setup?

I’m also interested in how successful our Mac folks have been.  I may buy a Mac, if it will work better with my Motif XS8.

Thanks.
Don W.

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Posted on: July 19, 2023 @ 01:39 PM
- Henry -
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Total Posts:  197
Joined  10-30-2011
status: Pro

Hi,

Sorry that you aren’t getting any response. You’re not being ignored; These forums just don’t have that many active members anymore.

I don’t have an XS myself, but own several other Yamaha instruments that use the same USB-MIDI driver. It is in fact used with a large range of Yamaha instruments, dating from current ones all the way back to to the late 90s. It’s my “daily driver” (pardon the pun) for most of the sequencing I do, and since I’ve never really had problems with it, I would characterize it as higly reliable.

The USB-MIDI driver is, as the name implies, a MIDI-only connection via the TO HOST USB connector. It transmits MIDI data in both directions via a single USB cable. You can use it to record XS8 keystrokes and controller motion onto MIDI tracks in a DAW/sequencer running on your computer, and play back MIDI tracks from the computer to the XS8 synthesizer engine. In essence, what MIDI sequencing is all about.

Other types of MIDI data can also be transmitted, of course, such as voices/banks, patterns and sequences. This is useful for archiving purposes or editing on the computer with the dedicated Motif XS Editor. You can also set up the Transport buttons and faders/knobs on the XS to remotely control functions in certain DAWs via MIDI.

Audio can not be passed over the USB-MIDI connection, so in order to make audio recordings of the XS8 with this kind of setup, your computer will need an audio interface that connects to the XS8 audio output jacks or the digital S/PDIF RCA output. You didn’t say which EMU interfaces you have, but if they handle 1/4” jacks or S/PDIF, and can play/record audio tracks cleanly at the required sample rate/bit depth with reasonably low latency, it’s enough to get you going.

The USB-MIDI connection works well on both Mac and Windows computers, and driver versions for older operating systems like XP can still be downloaded. It can also be used with virtually any DAW or sequencer. I wouldn’t know how to answer which DAW is the most suitable for it, since that has more to do with the inherent terminology and learning curve of each one, as well as your workflow preferences. If you’re not happy with StudioOne, and Cubase doesn’t cut it, try out one of the free options instead. Alternatively, download its manual for a quick study, and see whether it makes sense to you or not.

...

A word or two about mLAN:

The mLAN protocol, although promising, was short-lived. Development was halted and support withdrawn rather quietly, to the agony of many users. There are those who still use it, but most people eventually ditched their mLAN stuff years ago, which means that the user base is not very large these days. The dedicated user forums are also long gone, and as a result, it’s not as easy to find useful info or get help setting up.

The last official driver release was in 2008 (OSX Leopard), while Windows users were cut off in 2003 (XP/Vista). A beta driver for 64-bit Windows did surface at some point before it was all over, and it has since been modified by clever enthusiasts to run on modern systems.

After Yamaha discontinued mLAN, Steinberg developed their own FireWire Audio/MIDI driver for mLAN equipment. It uses the existing mLAN circuitry of compatible devices much in the same way, although without the multi-device networking features that were one of mLAN’s main selling points.

A major problem with the technology was that the mLAN drivers didn’t work with all FireWire controller chips (the same is unfortunately also true for the Yamaha Steinberg FireWire driver), so some research into what actual FireWire controller your computers use - and whether the chips are listed as compatible - would surely be a wise move.

The mLAN connectors of the XS8, as mentioned in your other post, can transmit both digital audio and MIDI bidirectionally with a single cable (16 mono/8 stereo out from the XS, 6 mono/3 stereo in, as well as 3 MIDI In/3 MIDI Out ports).

- H -

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Posted on: July 20, 2023 @ 02:57 AM
dwitmotifguy
Total Posts:  8
Joined  06-30-2023
status: Newcomer

Henry:
THANK YOU, for a clear, concise answer!! :)
I downloaded all the Windows drivers from Yamaha, last night.  Going to get the Mac drivers tonight in case I need to buy a Mac.
Let me ask you, would I be successful in attempting to connect my Motif XS8 to my Windows XP Service Pack 3 computers through FireWire?  I just bought 2 more dedicated Windows XP 3 Machines and install discs for SP 1, SP 2 and SP3.  I also bought 3) FireWire audio/midi interfaces on eBay.

And, last night I bought a Windows 7 Professional computer (500GB SSD and 500GB HDD.  Also bought a Windows 10 machine, same specs.

All of this in hopes of connecting the XP machine through FireWire and the Win 7 and Win 10 machines by whatever method works best.

Should I keep going down this rabbit hole or just return my Motif XS8 and find an XF8?  I have about 2 more weeks to return my XS8 or just live with it.
Will an XF8 connect any better and do the Midi and Audio thing or is it just not going to work??
It seems like a great concept on paper: Midi and Audio through one cable…

By the way, I also bought a Yamaha QY700 sequencer.  Hoping to use it, my Motif XS8 and my Ensoniq TS-12 to write some good encouraging music.

Thanks, again.
Don W.

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Posted on: July 20, 2023 @ 10:26 AM
- Henry -
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Total Posts:  197
Joined  10-30-2011
status: Pro

Hi Don,

dwitmotifguy - 20 July 2023 02:57 AM

Let me ask you, would I be successful in attempting to connect my Motif XS8 to my Windows XP Service Pack 3 computers through FireWire?

Like I indicated in the previous post, it all depends on what type of FireWire controller the computers are equipped with. If the computers are different makes/models, then chances are that the FireWire controllers are different too. In order to find out, open Windows’ Device Manager and look under IEEE 1394 Controllers. If one is installed on the system, it appears there. You can right-click it and select Properties, in order to find details about it.

Yamaha only lists a small number of compatible controllers for the YSFW driver. This website lists a whole bunch of FireWire adapters and on-board controllers, and you’ll find notes on whether they have been verified to work for audio or not (many still haven’t been tested).

dwitmotifguy - 20 July 2023 02:57 AM

Should I keep going down this rabbit hole or just return my Motif XS8 and find an XF8?

Is the “rabbit hole” about the instrument itself, or is it related to the computers and other stuff you’ve aquired?

I would keep the XS, since the XF isn’t all that different (colour LCD, optional Flash memory for samples). I would then keep one of the newer PCs for music stuff, after making sure that it has a FireWire controller that is compatible with the XS, get rid of the old ones (chances are, they’re not going to last as long anyway) and forget about mLAN and Windows XP all together. I’d try to use the Yamaha Steinberg FireWire driver, since it too sends Audio + MIDI up and down one cable, and is designed for modern operating systems.

Start by checking the FireWire controllers of your Win7 and Win10 PCs against the lists I linked to above. If the FireWire controllers are on separate PCI/PCIe expansion cards, they can be moved to a different computer, so test the ones from the XP computers too, if possible.

Please keep in mind:
If you can’t get the FireWire connection to work with any of your computers, you can still use the USB-MIDI driver, and record audio from the XS output jacks. Even if it takes a couple more cables, it is not going to be more difficult to set up within your software.

dwitmotifguy - 20 July 2023 02:57 AM

Will an XF8 connect any better and do the Midi and Audio thing or is it just not going to work??

The XS and XF both use the same driver for FireWire connection to your computer, with the same FireWire controller compatibility issues, so chances are exactly the same. The only difference between them in this respect is that the XF does not have the older mLAN mode option.

- H -

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Posted on: July 27, 2023 @ 05:52 AM
dwitmotifguy
Total Posts:  8
Joined  06-30-2023
status: Newcomer

Henry: you have given me a lot of very helpful information in my Motif XS8 - Midi Audio FireWire quest.  I Thank you, very much.  Thanks to the interface card list you gave me, I now have two Belkin F5U502 FireWire cards and a SIIG card that was also on the list.
I’m not sure how these three cards will work with my audio interfaces, but I also bought, (in the last two weeks):
an M-Audio FireWire Audiophile,
a Presonus Firebox,
and an E-MU 1820.

I also have an E-MU 0404 that I’ve been using for several years, but no FireWire on that XP Professional machine, yet.

If you have any thoughts on any of those cards and interfaces that would work for me, I would appreciate your help.
Thanks.
DW

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Posted on: July 27, 2023 @ 02:27 PM
- Henry -
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Total Posts:  197
Joined  10-30-2011
status: Pro

Hi,

I wish I had more info for you, but I haven’t tested any of those myself. My own mLAN stuff (Motif ES7 w/mLAN16E, 02R96 w/2x MY8-mLAN) was connected to a laptop way back when. I have only used internal PCIe audio interfaces since then.

- H -

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