Roland FP-30 connection to iPad apps via Bluetooth/MIDI


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Recent bought the Roland FP30. Love it. Questions: 1.) I have an iPad 2nd generation (the model that was released around 2011), and I'm not so sure this older model of the iPad is compatible via Bluetooth/MIDI. The iPad seems to pair with the keyboard OK ("FP-30" shows up in the list on the iPad), but that's as far is I get. I have Piano Partner 2 installed, but even after pairing, the full set of functions doesn't become enabled (everything stays grey'd out, except that Flash Card game thingie). Is my iPad just not supported? Please help. 2.) Any suggestions on a good virtual synth app that works great with the FP-30 being the MIDI controller? I have the Roland Integra7 app installed on my iPad, but it also doesn't seem to do anything. It just seems to clock, and then I continue to get a message saying something like "Cannot find enabled MIDI device". This could again be a compatibility issue with that older (2nd generation, 2011) iPad. I do also have a newer iPod Touch (6th generation I believe). Perhaps that would be the better iOS device to try linking the FP-30 with via Bluetooth/MIDI, and utilizing these apps there.

I'm a noobie with digital keyboards, so thanks for any help/suggestions anyone can provide.

Thanks again.
Rob
 
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happyrat1

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I have no experience with ipads in general, but first off, see if you can borrow a more recent ipad and see if you can get it working then.

Also, if you can, lay your hands on a PC and see if it will work with a Windows machine.

Also if you have access to a camera connection kit see if you can get it working with a wired connection.

These steps should give you some answers to a few of your questions.

Gary ;)
 
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Welcome.

Firstly discount Bluetooth for any connection, latency is a common issue.

Garage Band on your iPad should work fine, if it does not then please try/answer the following.

I am unsure of your keyboard operation but on some you have to delve into the menu system and enable/configure MIDI to get the keyboard operating correctly when connected, the manual should have a section on MIDI use to guide you.

How and what are you using to connect the keyboard to your iPad?

Keyboard > USB lead > Camera Connection Adaptor > iPad

It has to be a genuine Apple Camera Adaptor, an eBay or Amazon sourced unit is likely to be a clone/rip off and may or may not work.

The problem being is that your iPad is old and has a connector for which the Camera Adaptor is no longer produced.

If you have a PC download the Driver file from the Roland website, install it, then plug in the keyboard via a standard USB lead, power on the keyboard and the PC should see the keyboard. If this works then you could use the PC for DAW usage, Cakewalk by BandLab is free and used by many.

Another way of trying to get an iPad to work is to borrow a new one and try it, you will need the Camera Adaptor (the one with a USB socket and a Lightning socket) at c$35 if you cannot borrow one of these.
 
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I just joined so I could chime in here. I know its a couple of years too late for the OP, but the nature of the internet is that people will land here for as long as the FP-30 and iOS devices are still in use, so hopefully useful to someone.
It really pisses me off on forums when people give generic 'helpful' advice, when often (a) they don't understand the OP's question. (b) they don't understand the technology they are giving advice about (c) they don't own or haven't used the gear they are giving advice about.
I only give advice about gear I own (i have a FP-30), or have owned previously and know well enough to give answers about.

So that aside, here's my 2c

1. Sorry Biggles, but your first sentence is wrong. While Bluetooth is a bitch for latency when using audio, we're talking about MIDI here, which is tiny amounts of data in comparison and works fine over Bluetooth. I doubt Roland would have included it as a feature if it simply didn't work.

2. Sounds like the OP needed to update the firmware in his FP-30. They updated the app and the piano needs new firmware to work properly. Luckily, it's a fairly easy task to do, you just need a USB memory stick. Here's a link in case anyone needs to do this:

3. Here's another tip to give you a bit of future-proofing: one of the nice features about Apple and iOS apps is that they can just break when they are updated (go figure). Sometimes, you update your iPad to the latest iOS and you discover a bunch of your fave apps no longer work. Unless these apps are still actively developed, you may not be able to update them to a version that works with your iPad. Apple don't even let you downgrade to an earlier iOS version, so you are screwed. The solution for musicians is to either stop using iOS devices, or because i'm accepting the sad fact that they are WAYYY better than the Android alternatives, do the following: once you get your iPad working with the apps you need, freeze it in time. Stop updating iOS - ignore the nags from Apple to do so. Use it solely as a music tool and stop using it for email, online banking, etc. so you don't need to worry about vulnerabilities and security 'threats'. Use a separate device for your online activities :)
After a period of time has passed, and you start getting envious about some new apps which are awesome, you can buy a shiny new iPad (or it's latest equivalent), set it up the way you want again, and do the same. Meanwhile you have your trusty old iPad to rely on.
Nothing worse than discovering your setlist app no longer works 20 mins before a gig, just because you updated to the latest iOS to get some new features you didn't even need.
Also this has the added advantage of making sure your iOS device still runs like new. I have a range of iPad models with different iOS versions and the 2nd gen one works as fast as a new one - just with some older apps on it - some of which don't even work on a new iPad.
Unless Apple change their policy of not allowing downgrading to earlier OS, I think this is the best approach.
OK, i've gone off on a little tangent here, but at least I addressed the OPs specific issue :)
 

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