CASIO CTK3200 as MIDI Controller


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Hi, everyone.

First of all I want to say that I looked over the forum but couldn't find any about this.
I apologize if this is a duplicated post.

I bought a Casio CTK-3200 keyboard that has a USB port.
The product page on Casio site says that it has a USB Connection with GM Level 1 standard.

I want to know how to use this keyboard as a controller to VSTs on my computer.
Do I need something as a USB Audio Card?

My computer plays the 'new hardware connected' sound when I plug it on but I cant find anything on the device Manager and cant find anything about it on FL studio. This is my firt time trying to use a controller or VSTs/DAWs.

Thx
 
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Fred Coulter

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Until an expert chimes in, here's my two cents.

Most VSTs require a program to host them. Generally those programs are either DAWs or some soft of live hosting program. You'll need to install the VST into the program, following whatever steps the program requires.

Some keyboards with USB (type B) ports require that special drivers be installed on the computer before the computer will recognize that the keyboard is there. Basically, with the drivers, the keyboard is now just an expensive peripheral.

You will need yet one other piece of software, hopefully part of the operating system, to route the MIDI signals from the keyboard (once recognized) to the DAW or VST Hosting program. And the sound will come out of the computer's speakers.

For the experts to go into more detail, including step by step instructions, you'll probably need to tell them what kind of computer you're using and what kind of DAW or VST Hosting program you're using. Otherwise all we can tell you is the generic stuff I just mentioned.
 

SeaGtGruff

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See page E-34 of your keyboard's User Guide. As Fred said, you'll need to install the driver, which I think can be found here:

http://support.casio.com/en/support/download.php?cid=008&pid=20&model=CTK-3200

I think the GM1 compatibility is mainly with regard to received MIDI data-- i.e., the keyboard can respond to GM1 messages, but it isn't programmed to understand GM2-, XG-, or GS-specific messages.

As far as transmitting MIDI messages, one thing you need to know is that (I think) it can transmit on only one MIDI channel, so you need to pick the channel you want it to send on-- the default is channel 1. What this means as far as controlling VST or other types of virtual instruments is that you cannot set up splits or layers for sending to multiple virtual instruments on different channels. That might not be a problem, depending on your DAW or other host software. For instance, my favorite DAW-- Acoustica Mixcraft-- lets me take a single incoming MIDI channel and create multiple splits and layers within the DAW based on specified note ranges. This may or may not be possible in other DAWs, but it's incredibly easy to do in Mixcraft.

Also, keep in mind that when you use a musical keyboard as a MIDI keyboard controller, you're more limited as far as what types of messages you can send to your virtual instruments-- i.e., the buttons, knobs, and other controls on the keyboard are for controlling some aspect of the keyboard and its sound, and most of them will probably not generate any MIDI messages which can be used for controlling the settings on a virtual instrument.
 

Fred Coulter

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As far as transmitting MIDI messages, one thing you need to know is that (I think) it can transmit on only one MIDI channel, so you need to pick the channel you want it to send on-- the default is channel 1. What this means as far as controlling VST or other types of virtual instruments is that you cannot set up splits or layers for sending to multiple virtual instruments on different channels. That might not be a problem, depending on your DAW or other host software. For instance, my favorite DAW-- Acoustica Mixcraft-- lets me take a single incoming MIDI channel and create multiple splits and layers within the DAW based on specified note ranges. This may or may not be possible in other DAWs, but it's incredibly easy to do in Mixcraft.

Aren't there MIDI routing/processing programs that replace the built in routing software? I seem to remember software that will split your MIDI single channel messages into multiple channels based on a variety of factors. The most obvious is the specific key being pressed, but also velocity. Or am I fantasizing?
 

happyrat1

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OK, first off I believe the CTK-3200 doesn't require any drivers. It is USB MIDI Class Compliant meaning Windows auto detects and installs it's own generic driver.

Secondly you'll require either a VST Host program or a DAW program that runs VST plugins.

Thirdly you'll require MIDI Routing software if you are using a VST Host Program.

Finally you'll have to go into the MIDI options menu of your CTK-3200 and turn LOCAL to OFF.

At this point you just point your Keyboard's MIDI at whatever VSTi software you are using and you should be able to play virtual instruments.

As for the GM compatibility? This is merely a minimum level of compatibility between the keyboard and general MIDI files.

In reality if you are recording to a DAW there are all sorts of voices on a CTK-3200 which you can use. In order to select them, however, you will require a specific configuration file to define your instruments in whichever DAW you are using. Cakewalk uses INS files, which, while almost an industry standard are not used by everyone. Cubase has it's own config files and methods but many third party DAWs can use a Cakewalk INS file straight out of the box.

Sometimes if you can't find the specific INS file for your instrument, you can use one for a slightly older or different model.

INS" files are also not too complicated to edit or create being simple text files with voice names and CC codes for each bank and setting.

Google will direct you to several pages on how to create your own INS files. Once you create an INS file be sure and contribute to the community by uploading it to public forums and databases like this one so the next guy doesn't have to reinvent the wheel.

Gary ;)
 

SeaGtGruff

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Thanks for mentioning LOCAL Off, as I'd forgotten about that. :)

I don't think he'll need to worry about INS files for controlling virtual instruments-- but yes, he'll want to consider them when (or if) he moves on to creating MIDI songs in a DAW with the intention of playing them on his CTK.
 
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happyrat1

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BTW, nobody's mentioned the most basic fact which is that he'll require a standard USB AB Printer Cable to connect his CTK to his computer. This should be described in the first 5 pages of the manual somewhere.

I recommend getting at least a 6 ft if not 10 ft cable.

Also if he wants to record music from his CTK to his computer and not just MIDI data he'll also require an audio adapter cable leading from the stereo Line OUTs on his CTK to the 3.5 mm Line IN on his computer.

Not sure if the 3200 has standard 1/4" Line Outs or just a headphone jack. Too lazy to check the manual right now. Whichever he has will determine exactly which sort of adapter cable he'll require.

Gary ;)
 

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