Midi File Help


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I've created a simple 8 measure piece using MusicScore version 2.1 and when I load that midi file into my Yamaha DGX-660, the score isn't the same. It's mostly OK, but there are differences, some significant. I also tried to load a midi file from the CD that came with the book Alfred's Group Piano For Adults Book 2 and found that the score differed significantly.

I'm a newbie, so I'm not sure if this is a common occurrence or not.

Any help or insight would be greatly appreciated. I tried to upload the midi file, but it wasn't allowed.

Thanks in advance.
 
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happyrat1

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Standard MIDI files don't contain much in the way of voice data. What they contain is note value and duration and basic patch numbers and not much else.

This means that they will vary greatly in sound texture depending on which sound engine you play them on.

As a rule of thumb, if you want a MIDI to sound exactly as recorded you have to play it on the instrument you recorded it on.

Otherwise, while a MID file may specify a grand piano sound for a patch, the tone of the piano will depend greatly on how good the piano sound of your instrument is.

To further complicate matters, GM format only specifies a single bank of 128 sounds. If a MIDI file was created on a DAW in a format which includes extended bank info these extra banks will be truncated or translated to the minimal GM bank.

There are ways around this such as including sysex data (system exclusive) but these will only play properly on the devices they were written for,

So to answer your question, this is nothing to freak out about and is pretty much normal for all MIDI devices.

Gary ;)
 
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I was hoping the note values would be the same to help me practice. I got all excited when I discovered I could load my class's repertoire piece into the piano and slow the tempo down. It's still better than nothing.

Thanks for your help.
 

SeaGtGruff

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When you say "there are differences," do you mean differences in the sounds used for the various parts of the score, or do you mean something else?

If you mean differences in the sounds, then as Gary said, this is normal. However, you should be able to edit the MIDI file in a program so it chooses the best voices (sounds) available on your DGX-660. Which operating system does your computer use? There are free utility programs available which can show you the voices currently used in the MIDI file and which let you change them to different voices.

If you mean something else, can you describe what the differences are?
 
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The sound is the same, but the score has different notes. The bass clef was written on the treble clef with an 8va under it, and the notes that were supposed to be on the treble clef are 1 octave too high. The melody is correct. Funny thing is it sounds right.

I'm running Windows 8.1
 
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If, by "MusicScore", you are referring to "MuseScore", that is "music notation" software. It is not actually DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) or sequencer software (software designed PRIMARILY for MIDI recording). What you are seeing is typical of notation software, particularly the lower priced and free offerings. They can be easily confused when importing MIDI data that contains complex passages that include normal human timing variations, either intentional or accidental (errors), that have not been removed with "quantization" (electronic shifting and locking of notes to occur exactly on the beat) by the recording software and/or hardware. This is particularly true when the imported data contains improvisational runs/licks and/or grace notes. You can try quanitzing the data with DAW/sequencer software before importing it into MuseScore, but the aforementioned "problem" passages very quickly lose the nuances intended by the original author/player, and take on an overly mechanized aura, if they are not just totally jumbled by the quantization process. Some (many ?) complex passages can even confuse professional quality quantization software at times. Usually the only resource is to use the notation software's editor and just make manual corrections, which can be quite tedious and time consuming.
 
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SeaGtGruff

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It sounds like the notation software shows the notes on a grand staff, but the keyboard is showing everything on the treble clef staff. The notes are actually the same, they're just displayed differently. I;m not sure if there's a way to get some of the notes to display in the bass clef staff on the keyboard.
 
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Tiger

If your problem is, in fact, a common versus split staff problem, as Michael (SeaGtGruff) suggests, then correcting that should be "reasonably" manageable. Other notation software I have used will do this for you by converting a treble-only staff to a Grand Staff and automatically moving notes below Middle C from the treble staff to the bass staff. I am not familiar with MuseScore, but I did download a copy. To begin with, its editing capabilities are much more sophistcated than I expected, but sadly, it does not appear capable of doing an automatic treble-only to Grand Staff conversion, but it will allow you to declare separate treble and bass staffs on a new project, so that should make a manual correction to your current and future projects possible. To do this, you are going to need sequencer (DAW) software. If you do not already have that, I would recommend Anvil Studio. It is available as a free download from "anvilstudio.com". You would need to import your existing song file into Anvil Studio and use its track copy feature to clone your existing "track" into an identical separate track and decide which track you want to use as the treble track and which for the bass track. You would then do a batch note delete to remove all notes below Middle C from the treble track and all notes Middle C and above from the bass track, and save the file. Then, in MuseScore, open a new project and establish a treble staff and a bass staff and have it import treble track data from your file into the treble staff and bass track data into the bass staff. If you want to record a new performance directly into MuseScore and your keyboard has a "split" feature, you should be able to split the keyboard at Middle C and assign the upper zone to one MIDI channel and the lower zone to an adjacent channel, then tell MuseScore to record data from the upper zone channel to the treble staff and data from the lower zone channel to the bass staff. It appears that MuseScore can be set up to do this. Keep in mind that ANY notation software will have problems with left hand notes and/or right hand notes that cross over the split point, as the software has no way of knowing where those belong. For those notes, you need to use the software's editing features to move those notes to their proper ledger lines above or below their associated staves. I have had many years practice at this in helping new owners of Casio keyboards with "learning" features convert downloaded non-Casio MIDI files into compatible split staff/track files that will work with their board's "learning" features. After you have done it a few times, the procedure becomes fairly routine and goes rather quickly.

Good luck!
 
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I would just assign each staff to a different midi channel. Then your DAW will interpret them as different tracks and won't combine them all into one track.
 

SeaGtGruff

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I would just assign each staff to a different midi channel. Then your DAW will interpret them as different tracks and won't combine them all into one track.
That's what I would do, too, although I'm not certain how the keyboard will display the notes-- will it just go by the note values regardless of channel, or would it separate the channels onto separate staves?

Also, I'm not clear on whether the issue is with the way the keyboard is displaying the score (which is what it sounded like to me based on the initial post), or with the way the notation software is displaying it.
 
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happyrat1

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It is possible guys, that the DGX is simply interpreting the bassline patch as something that normally plays in a higher register.

If he really wants to share the file with us for inspection he could simply upload it to Google Drive, make the file public and post the url here for us to access it.

That would remove most of the mystery from this conversation.

Gary ;)
 

SeaGtGruff

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Ah, but mystery is more fun! :D

Also, after half a dozen more posts or so, he(?) should be able to attach the file to a post.
 
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Also, after half a dozen more posts or so, he(?) should be able to attach the file to a post.
I tried to attach the midi file, but it wouldn't let me.

I'd like to thank everyone that took time out of their day to help me. It's greatly appreciated!

Being a piano novice, I was just looking for a way to help me practice. When I discovered that I could upload a midi file from the CD that came with my course book, I almost wet myself. I can slow the temp down and mark measures to repeat. Even though the notes are different in places, there are enough measures that are exact to help me a lot.

I'm an old dog trying to learn new tricks. After 1 1/2 years of learning, I'm most grateful for the fact that I only have two hands. That's hard enough for me right now.
 
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If he really wants to share the file with us for inspection he could simply upload it to Google Drive, make the file public and post the url here for us to access it.
Hadn't thought of that!

I don't have any software that's more sophisticated than the free MuseScore, so I'm not very likely to investigate some of the solutions proposed here. I can scan the score from the book and include the score and midi file that was created by MuseScore.
 

happyrat1

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Like I said earlier, the forum has a piddly sized upload limit on files and it's very picky about filetypes. You may have to zip it up to be able to upload it.

Otherwise, you could go with my other suggestion to simply use the Google Drive Account attached to your Gmail Account and upload it to a public space on there.

Here's the URL for Google Drive if you can't find it on your own.

https://drive.google.com/drive/my-drive

Go to that url, upload the file to your account, and then make it public and copy and paste the url of the file here in the forum.

Gary ;)
 
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SeaGtGruff

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I think the problem with adding an attachment might be because he hasn't made 10 posts yet-- but he's halfway there. He can post a link, but I think it will end up in the moderation queue and will need to be approved by a moderator (part of the normal anti-spam procedure).
 

happyrat1

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Actually I just tested a MID file and the system barfed on it.

"File does not have an allowed extension."

I think all it accepts are GIF JPG and ZIP and possibly a couple of other compressed filetypes,

It DEFINITELY DOES ACCEPT Zipped files.

I compressed the MIDI and thar she blows!

The system definitely DOES have size limits though. Try and upload a 4 Meg Mp3 and you'll find out.

Gary ;)
 

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SeaGtGruff

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Zipping the file before trying to attach it seems like the best option, then.

Thank you for the Birdland MIDI! :)
 

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