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Old 04-25-2011, 05:46 AM
jwt0bos jwt0bos is offline
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Posts: 14
Default SD7K (& SD7PK?) to DAW or drum software programming


Today I think I finally totally beat the SD7K.

The two problems of the SD7K are 1) transmits on CH 10 only, and 2) very unwieldy implementation of MIDI note assignments.

Here's what you run into when you boot up the SD7K in set 001: the RIDE and the HH closed both transmit the same MIDI note. So you have to make your own set (described in my other post) which has a new RIDE and save it in one of the user slots (drum sets 021 - 050).

Now you are transmitting unique notes for all events, but what if your software requires them on CERTAIN NOTES? This was what I worked on today.

NOTE: If you ever attempt to reprogram any HH event, ALL 4 (HH closed, HH open, HH pedal, HH splash) WILL SEND THE SAME MIDI NOTE! So you could try to setup a custom set in the SD7K with whatever MIDI notes you want (aka Simmons "voices") but when you get around to the HH you're screwed. Because of this limitation, you cannot (for the purpose of controlling external software) ever change the HH notes / voices. Always leave them intact when you create & save a new drumset within the SD7K.

There is a free program called "eDrum MIDI mapper" which will allow complete reassignment of MIDI notes, MIDI channels, and also choke functionality. http://audiomidi.chaoticbox.com/

I am still fine tuning the choke function on my setup. It's main use is for choking open HH or HH splash events when you press down the HH pedal. The program gives you other significant capabilities that you will discover with use.

In the documentation they tell you you need a virtual MIDI port as eDrum cannot directly interface to your DAW. I recommend LoopBe1 because it is utterly simple and functional. http://www.nerds.de/en/loopbe1.html

My goal was to get my SD7K to talk to the Impact drum sampler in Presonus StudioOne. I had previously gotten the SD7K to work with Battery with total success (other post) and that works really well, but I was hoping to get it to work with S1's (Studio One's) native software because Impact is a lot simpler but has all the sound control I need and I thought it would have lower CPU overhead. I have achieved this goal.

1) make a new drumset within SD7K with a changed voice # for the ride pad, possibly another ride sound - but just unique from the other pads.
2) install eDrum and LoopBe1
3) set MIDI input on eDrum to SD7K (or however it appears to your system as a MIDI controller - in my case it is "virtual MIDI controller")
4) set MIDI out put on eDrum to LoopBe1
5) make an event in eDrum for each event the SD7K can generate and use the MIDI learn function on each
Bass drum
Snare drum
Tom 1
Tom 2
Tom 3
HH open
HH pedal press
HH splash (play the HH pedal really quick and not down to the stop)
HH played closed (when you have eDrum "MIDI learn" this, press the pedal down before you press the learn button. Holding the pedal, select the learn button, and hit the HH)
6) in your DAW enable LoopBe1 as a MIDI input device - and when you bring up your drum or sampler VSTi select it as the input device

A word of warning - you might type in G3 for the output note of an event, but your DAW might see it as G2 (for example) - an octave shift. This is more or less a MIDI anomaly as far as I know. It wont change, just send a G4 of you needed a G3. Use the MIDI data monitor avaiable (hopefully) in your DAW to verify what it sees from LoopBe1.

Last edited by jwt0bos; 04-25-2011 at 10:39 PM. Reason: extensive re-write and removal of references to HH being a true CC
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:00 PM
Posts: n/a
Default Re: SD7K (& SD7PK?) to DAW or drum software programming

Personally, I would interface the MIDI data into Max/MSP and write a program to do all the remapping for me. Just seems like an easier solution. It would do everything you're trying to do and you could customise it - because you're the one writing the software.
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:32 PM
jwt0bos jwt0bos is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 14
Default Re: SD7K (& SD7PK?) to DAW or drum software programming

Yeah this SD7K is very schizophrenic when it comes to trying to work with it's MIDI data stream! I am sure some custom software would be greatly appreciated by the community too. For now, eDrum seems to solve my problems.

Incidentally the eDrum documentation does warn of possible octave shift issues. I don't know if it's a eDrum thing or just a MIDI issue that was never thoroughly ironed out.

Additional note for those trying this - the key to success working with the SD7K in this manner is to make a drum set with a different ride voice (that's a Simmons term) which will result in you only having changed the MIDI note put out by the RIDE pad. Save this set to any bank from 021 - 050 and only use this set with your computer software. Don't mess with any other pads especially the hi-hat. Program each pad or actually each MIDI event in eDrum. If you read the docs you'll see how to use MIDI learn for the input note which is very convenient. Then you'll set the output note for each event by typing it in. At this point you would ideally want to monitor the MIDI data stream as you play your pads, in a MIDI data monitor hopefully included with your DAW. This will allow you to remove all doubt as to what note is firing to your DAW when you play a pad.

P.S. If you for example select another drumset than the one you programmed in the SD7K - the MIDI note for each pad is now different = CHAOS. Every sound or "voice" has an associated MIDI note in the SD7K world. If you go from one set to another probably all the MIDI notes sent by the various pads will be changed. So set program say 001 with ANY new voice for a new ride, and save it to set 021. Then use 021 forever with the DAW or computer drum software.

ALSO one more confusing bit. The SD7K manual lists the HH pedal control as CC4. I have not witnessed continuous data coming from the pedal when monitoring the data. IT IS A SWITCH TYPE PEDAL but it DOES transmit velocity like all the other pads. I am confused as to why SIMMONS lists it as a continuous controller. What am I missing?

Last edited by jwt0bos; 04-25-2011 at 11:07 PM.
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