Midi keyboard for live perfomance


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Hi.

I play keys in a band and just started using VST instruments live. Got one stage piano (Yamaha P-125) with weighted keys for piano and a "Komplete Kontrol A49" for organ and synth. My setup on the previous gig was using both keyboards as input to the Komplete Kontrol application and using the A49 to select sound preset (same preset for both). The good thing was that I could hide my laptop (using windows by the way) and only look at the preset name on the A49. The main problem was that the organ sounds and the piano sounds is VERY different in volume, driving the sound tech guy insane. It is not possible to save volume settings as preset in komplete kontrol. Also I can not layer sounds.

So my plan is to use Ableton Live Lite (or another DAW) to setup 8 tracks. I can then adjust the volume for each track to a balanced level. But I need to enable/disable tracks from my midi keyboard. I wonder what keyboard is the best choice for this. I want 61 keys and at least one output for sustain pedal. I can use my KK A49 and its 8 knobs for this, but it would be better with buttons and it is hard to see which ones are enabled and disabled. I don't want any surprises. Any ideas? Or is there a better setup?
 
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Welcome.

Since you use Komplete Kontrol why not stay within the Native Instruments family


I have tried the 61 key version of the keyboard and it was very good and the quality excellent but it does cost a fair amount.
 
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Welcome.

Since you use Komplete Kontrol why not stay within the Native Instruments family


I have tried the 61 key version of the keyboard and it was very good and the quality excellent but it does cost a fair amount.
Thanks your your reply! As far as I understand, s61 will give me the same as my A series. Except for the color LEDs and bigger display?
 
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Thanks, I will check out those live apps. Looks like they are made for the purpose except that you are supposed to interact with the computer. That is something I am trying to avoid. Is it a bad idea to use VSTs on stage without a laptop in my face?

I tried setting up Ableton live and using midi to toggle tracks. It works, but it feels like a hack. Ended up using the monitor switch because the mute still trigger the VSTs and each muted track added CPU load.
 
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With some if not all of them, you should be able to invoke the setups you want with a MIDI Program Change. So you don't need to interact with the computer during performance, as long as your controller has buttons from which you can send user-defined Program Change commands. Even better if the controller has knobs/sliders for the volume controls you can assign to the various zones.
 
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anotherscott: I will test and give my feedback.

Just found out that Native Instruments still does not support midi template changes for their A-series in Komplete. They say it is in beta testing but I will not hold my breath. Might need a new keyboard after all.
 
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Looks like they are made for the purpose except that you are supposed to interact with the computer. That is something I am trying to avoid. Is it a bad idea to use VSTs on stage without a laptop in my face?
Gig Performer (disclaimer, I'm one of its developers) is designed specifically so that you do not have to interact with the computer during a show. In fact, one complaint we get occasionally is from people who want to interact more directly with the computer (you can't win them all).

There's full support for remove control via OSC so you can use an ipad with Lemur (for example) and you can use controllers (including MIDI pedal controllers) to switch parts, control parameters and so forth. When I tour, my laptop sits to one side and I rarely even look at it.

As an example, attached is the rig I was using for a show in Norway last month (NB, the Nord, which was provided as part of backline, was used only as a controller). Ifyou look to the left you'll see

  • On top - iPad Pro - running forScore. When a new song is selected there, Gig Performer switches to the desired song automatically
  • Underneath - ipad - running Lemur. This program interacts with Gig Performer via OSC. and displays sliders and knobs (which of course you can tweak directly on the iPad) as well as information such as song part names, BPM or tuning frequencies (for guitarists using GP)
  • To the left - laptop running Gig Performer and MaxMSP. The latter is for legacy stuff --- before Gig Performer had its own scripting language, I used Max to do some MIDI tweaking. GP and Max communicate in both directions via OSC
 

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