Play one note send a different note to the computer


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Hi.

I am sure many of you are familiar with the synthesia software. Is a notation software that uses midi. I really like synthesia, but I would like it much more if I could see all notation in C major which is the key I am familiar with. I would like synthesia to always display notation in C major, but I would like to hear myself playing in the original key of the song.

My question is:

Do keyboards have this capability to send a different midi message than the one being sounded? For example, can an E played on the keyboard send a C message to the computer? I am not talking about the transpose function, since that changes the sound of the keyboard also.

If keyboards don't have this capability; then, what can I do to change the message on the way from my keyboard to Synthesia without causing lags?

Ps: I am quite ignorant regarding tech and audio stuff, so be gentle.

Thanks in advance.
 
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SeaGtGruff

I meant to play that note!
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I'm not sure I follow what you're trying to accomplish. Can you give an example to clarify what you mean? For instance:

"I want to play a song that's written in the key of ___.

"I want Synthesia to display the song in the key of ___.

"I want to play the song on the keyboard in the key of ___.

"I want the notes to sound on the keyboard in the key of ___.

"I want the keyboard to send the notes back to Synthesia in the key of ___."

The thing is, I'm pretty sure you're wanting to transpose the notes, but I'm not following where you want the transposing to occur.
 
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I'm not sure I follow what you're trying to accomplish. Can you give an example to clarify what you mean? For instance:

"I want to play a song that's written in the key of ___.

"I want Synthesia to display the song in the key of ___.

"I want to play the song on the keyboard in the key of ___.

"I want the notes to sound on the keyboard in the key of ___.

"I want the keyboard to send the notes back to Synthesia in the key of ___."

The thing is, I'm pretty sure you're wanting to transpose the notes, but I'm not following where you want the transposing to occur.

Thanks for the reply.
Sorry for not being clear enough.

As an example let's say the original song is in Eb major.
I want synthesia to display the song in C major.
I want to play the song on the keyboard in Eb major.
I want the notes to sound on the keyboard in the key of Eb major.
I want the keyboard to send the notes back to synthesia in the key of C major. That is every note I play should sound to me as the note I played, but the note sent to synthesia should be 3 semitones lower. The 3 semitones correspond to the distance between Eb and C.
 
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Thanks for the reply.
Sorry for not being clear enough.

As an example let's say the original song is in Eb major.
I want synthesia to display the song in C major.
I want to play the song on the keyboard in Eb major.
I want the notes to sound on the keyboard in the key of Eb major.
I want the keyboard to send the notes back to synthesia in the key of C major. That is every note I play should sound to me as the note I played, but the note sent to synthesia should be 3 semitones lower. The 3 semitones correspond to the distance between Eb and C.
I guess it doesn’t matter but...why?
 

SeaGtGruff

I meant to play that note!
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Okay, that's pretty much what I thought maybe you meant. But this is where I get lost:

I want synthesia to display the song in C major.
I want to play the song on the keyboard in Eb major.
Unless we're talking about two vastly different programs, Synthesia is a "piano learning game" that displays the score in a vertical "piano roll" format, where the "falling notes" strike the image of a keyboard and light up the keys to show you which keys to play on your keyboard.

So I don't follow why you want to play different keys on your keyboard than the ones shown by Synthesia.

In any case, I don't know of any keyboard that can do what you want.

I think the only way you could accomplish it would be to use another app or device between Synthesia and your keyboard. This other app or device would transpose the MIDI notes going from Synthesia to your keyboard, as well as the MIDI notes going back from your keyboard to Synthesia.
 
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Okay, that's pretty much what I thought maybe you meant. But this is where I get lost:



Unless we're talking about two vastly different programs, Synthesia is a "piano learning game" that displays the score in a vertical "piano roll" format, where the "falling notes" strike the image of a keyboard and light up the keys to show you which keys to play on your keyboard.

So I don't follow why you want to play different keys on your keyboard than the ones shown by Synthesia.

In any case, I don't know of any keyboard that can do what you want.

I think the only way you could accomplish it would be to use another app or device between Synthesia and your keyboard. This other app or device would transpose the MIDI notes going from Synthesia to your keyboard, as well as the MIDI notes going back from your keyboard to Synthesia.
Thanks for the reply.

"I think the only way you could accomplish it would be to use another app or device between Synthesia and your keyboard. This other app or device would transpose the MIDI notes going from Synthesia to your keyboard, as well as the MIDI notes going back from your keyboard to Synthesia."
Yeah, that's a reasonable solution. But, don't you think that this would create some kind of lag? Do you have any recommendations as to how this can be accomplish? Do you know what app I should use to modify the MIDI message between my keyboard and synthesia?

Thanks again.
 
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SeaGtGruff

I meant to play that note!
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What are you using to run Synthesia on-- a computer (and if so, which operating system) or a tablet/smartphone (and if so, which operating system)?
 
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What are you using to run Synthesia on-- a computer (and if so, which operating system) or a tablet/smartphone (and if so, which operating system)?
I guess it doesn’t matter but...why?
I intend to use a modified keyboard with synthesia. This keyboard is symmetrical, meaning you don't have different playing positions for different keys. E.g. A major scale is played exactly the same way in all keys, so are all chords, all melodies, etc.
If I think in relative terms (intervals) instead of absolute terms (notes) I can use only the key I am most familiar with and avoid having to learn the notation in all twelve keys. But, I don't want to play everything in C major, I just need the notation to be in C major, hence the problem.
The modified keyboard is very similar to this one:
 
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I would have thought the (supposed) benefit of having a symmetrical keyboard is that it makes it easier to play in all 12 keys, not harder? Hence I still don't really understand the need to transpose everything into C Major.

That said, what I think about it makes no difference, I was just curious - good luck with your project!
 
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I would have thought the (supposed) benefit of having a symmetrical keyboard is that it makes it easier to play in all 12 keys, not harder? Hence I still don't really understand the need to transpose everything into C Major.

That said, what I think about it makes no difference, I was just curious - good luck with your project!
The problem is the reading, not the playing. In this keyboard playing in all keys is exactly the same.

I want to use C major as the basis for notation because I am much more familiar with the piano layout in C major than any other key. I know for instance that the A key in relation to the root in C major is the 6th, the G the 5th and so forth. In other keys I would have to think of these relations, I don't have them memorized for those other keys.
It seems much easier to me to use C major/Aminor as a frame to plug any key than to acquire the level of familiarity I have with C major/A minor with every other key.
 
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I didn't read all of the notes above; but it's possible depending on the keyboard you are using. I have a Kurzweil PC3 which is a fabulous midi controller. I could create a piano setup with 2 zones, zone 1 with a piano tuned normally and played "locally" (meaning I can hear it out of its outputs) in Eb. I could then, within that same setup, create a 2nd zone and assign it out to MIDI, and also transpose that zone 3 semi-tones. So as I play the song, I'm playing in Eb, hearing the song in Eb from the outputs of my keyboard but sending through MIDI in the key of C (because the zone going out MIDI is transposed down 3 steps). The software would receive as if I were playing in C and should show on its screen the key of C. If you were then to play back the song from the software it should play back in C because it received in C.

Why you would do this is completely beyond me..... The only reason I could think of is that the person you are then sending this to can only read songs in C. The reality is that you should be able to just send the song over in Eb and have the software transpose the song from Eb to C. But if you have a Kurzweil (I'm sure that you don't, this is possible). Most likely possible with a Yamaha or a Korg as well if they are upper end keyboards.
 
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I didn't read all of the notes above; but it's possible depending on the keyboard you are using. I have a Kurzweil PC3 which is a fabulous midi controller. I could create a piano setup with 2 zones, zone 1 with a piano tuned normally and played "locally" (meaning I can hear it out of its outputs) in Eb. I could then, within that same setup, create a 2nd zone and assign it out to MIDI, and also transpose that zone 3 semi-tones. So as I play the song, I'm playing in Eb, hearing the song in Eb from the outputs of my keyboard but sending through MIDI in the key of C (because the zone going out MIDI is transposed down 3 steps). The software would receive as if I were playing in C and should show on its screen the key of C. If you were then to play back the song from the software it should play back in C because it received in C.

Why you would do this is completely beyond me..... The only reason I could think of is that the person you are then sending this to can only read songs in C. The reality is that you should be able to just send the song over in Eb and have the software transpose the song from Eb to C. But if you have a Kurzweil (I'm sure that you don't, this is possible). Most likely possible with a Yamaha or a Korg as well if they are upper end keyboards.
I believe that is exactly what I am looking for. Thank you so much for telling me this!
I will try to find keyboards or controllers with this zones function.
 
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What do you mean when you refer to the outputs of the keyboard?
If it's a controller it doesn't have speakers, right?
Do you have to plug the controller to a computer to make it sound?

I am trying to figure out if I can use the same computer running synthesia with the information from one zone and a daw using the information from the other zone at the same time.

Is that even necessary? Do you have any advice? Sorry for the extreme ignorance.
Thanks again.
 
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The Kurzweil has output jacks. I simply attach a 1/4" cord from the keyboard's output jacks to a keyboard amp or a mixer that plugs into a sound system. Zone 1 of the setup I previously spoke about is directed to the keyboards outputs to a device (keyboard amp or mixer to a sound system) that will output that zone's sound so that you can audibly hear it. I'm playing the keyboard in Eb so I hear Eb coming through the sound system. Zone 2 of that same setup is instructed to only send key note information out to the MIDI jack and is instructed within the zone information of that setup to transpose 3 semitones down. The note information then goes out the midi out jack and Synthesia should receive the information in the key of C and should display on the screen the key of C. Synthesia has no idea that the source data was transposed 3 semitones and that you are physically playing in Eb, it only knows that it received the data in the key of C because that is what is being sent out the midi jack.

I don't know the Synthesia software but I still think that you can play in Eb and send the data out in Eb. After it is received in Synthesia you should be able to then tell synthesia to transpose the data 3 semitones and it should then show the music in the key of C and play it in C as well. It should be no different than going to the ultimate guitar site looking up the chords to a song; the chords are on the site in F but you want to see them in G so you tell ultimate guitar to transpose up 2 semitones and now the music is displayed in G.

go here: https://tabs.ultimate-guitar.com/tab/elvin_bishop/fooled_around_and_fell_in_love_chords_1045033

at the bottom of the page is transpose, by moving the transpose the key of the song is changed. You should be able to do this in Synthesia as well. you should have to go through all of the above to achieve your goal.
 
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The Kurzweil has output jacks. I simply attach a 1/4" cord from the keyboard's output jacks to a keyboard amp or a mixer that plugs into a sound system. Zone 1 of the setup I previously spoke about is directed to the keyboards outputs to a device (keyboard amp or mixer to a sound system) that will output that zone's sound so that you can audibly hear it. I'm playing the keyboard in Eb so I hear Eb coming through the sound system. Zone 2 of that same setup is instructed to only send key note information out to the MIDI jack and is instructed within the zone information of that setup to transpose 3 semitones down. The note information then goes out the midi out jack and Synthesia should receive the information in the key of C and should display on the screen the key of C. Synthesia has no idea that the source data was transposed 3 semitones and that you are physically playing in Eb, it only knows that it received the data in the key of C because that is what is being sent out the midi jack.

I don't know the Synthesia software but I still think that you can play in Eb and send the data out in Eb. After it is received in Synthesia you should be able to then tell synthesia to transpose the data 3 semitones and it should then show the music in the key of C and play it in C as well. It should be no different than going to the ultimate guitar site looking up the chords to a song; the chords are on the site in F but you want to see them in G so you tell ultimate guitar to transpose up 2 semitones and now the music is displayed in G.

go here: https://tabs.ultimate-guitar.com/tab/elvin_bishop/fooled_around_and_fell_in_love_chords_1045033

at the bottom of the page is transpose, by moving the transpose the key of the song is changed. You should be able to do this in Synthesia as well. you should have to go through all of the above to achieve your goal.
Thanks for the reply.

Your suggestion seems very reasonable. I am pretty sure I won't be able to get your exact keyboard. But, there are other options with similar features that would make this doable. So, thanks a lot.

Synthesia doesn't have a transpose function and don't intend to create one for the foreseeable future.
 

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