Robrecht Floorboarder #1

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  • Hey man, just wanted to say THANK YOU so much for your detailed guide on live midi changes with the Kemper. So ridiculously helpful.


    Also, thanks for the tip on the LP-16-- I'm strongly considering buying that now. My band is currently just using two mono tracks-- click and everything else-- coming from our drummer's phone. So, the LP-16 would be a big upgrade, with the added bonus of possibly controlling my Kemper and our keys player's synth.


    Are you still liking the LP-16 now that you've used it for a while?

    • Hey, thanks for your message!


      We're still using the LP-16. It's a solid device, I don't think it's ever failed us in its basic functions yet.


      (We've had some trouble with the midi channel for our programmed stage lights; it's a much denser, continuous data stream than our guitar effects automation, and at one point it seemed like not all messages were coming through, but that was solved after we updated to the latest firmware. Meanwhile, our programmed guitar effects changes have always worked perfectly.)


      As a dedicated device, it's more dependable than a phone or even a laptop, and having sixteen mono wav tracks is great. One for the click and two for stereo synths leaves you with a lot of room for extras; in most songs, we've added the individual guitar, bass and drum tracks from our demo recordings in there as well, so if one of us can't make it to rehearsal, we can easily be "replaced" by simply running an additional cable to from the LP-16 to the mixer. :-)


      The only thing that's a bit frustrating is that Cymatic's support isn't great. They have a forum that's not very active; feature requests seem to have little chance of becoming reality. That's ok, the machine is fine as it is, but one thing that I really miss is midi clock: the LP-16 doesn't do anything with the tempo in the midi file, so you can't sync your Kemper's delays etc. to it. That simply means that all delay tempos have to be set explicitly in the Kemper. No big deal, just something to keep in mind.

    • Thanks so much for getting back to me with your thoughts and experiences. I appreciate your balanced view. You are so helpful!


      Good to know about the lighting too. I was wondering if you could also program that through the same midi track you use for your Kempers. That is an extra, exciting thing to think about, although I admittedly have a lot to learn about lighting. What lighting software do you guys use?


      Also you mentioned no midi clock. Can you still manually create automation to tempo (say, wah or volume sweeps)?


      Also, I’d love to know the name of your band so I can check it out if you’re open to sharing!


      Thanks again man.

    • Our drummer developed a custom lighting device using an Axoloti circuit board (he does custom performance lighting for a living) and a lot of LED strips. :) It takes incoming midi for the RGB values of each of the lights. There may be off-the-shelf midi-to-lighting solutions too, I'm not sure.


      The LP-16 can play one midi file per song, but a single midi file can contain lots of different tracks addressing 16 different midi channels, so you can just put everything in there! Apart from the lights and my Kemper, we also use it for automating our other guitar player's Boss GT-100.


      So about tempo:

      * Even though the LP-16 doesn't send out midi clock information, you still have to set the tempo and time signature (and any changes occurring during the song) in the midi file. That way you can synchronize everything with the click and the backing track. For instance, if you set song to be in 4/4 at 74bpm, and you program a change on the first beat of the 17th measure, that defines the exact moment in time where you want the change to occur.

      * You're probably already preparing your backing tracks in a DAW, so that provides all the timing information you need for the midi tracks (riff B starts at measure x etc.).

      * That way, you can definitely program things to tempo! You could draw a volume (CC#7) curve that peaks at every first and third beat of a measure, for instance.

      * The length of each song in the LP-16 is determined by the shortest audio (wav) file, so if for some reason your click track is shorter than your synth track, playback will stop at the end of the click track. Likewise, if you program a midi event to occur right at the end of the song, make sure that all audio files for that song are long enough, or the LP-16 will stop before that. (I'm mentioning this because we recently had a bit of a head-scratcher where the final midi command didn't come through, and it turned out I'd accidentally made one of the wav files half a second shorter than the others.)


      My band is called My Lament, here's a video: :)


      What's your band called?

    • Woah-- that's awesome!!! Love the 360 video and dig the song and lighting. Super cool, all-around! Any chance you guys have any t-shirts for sale? I went ahead and gave you a Like on Facebook :)


      Also really helpful to know the Cymatic goes with the shortest file (seems counterintuitive to me, but alas...).


      I just set up my first Kemper MIDI track and it's magical! haha Even started drawing out wah sweeps.


      I did notice the control changes seem to be just a touch slow (nothing crazy), but I ended up putting them three or so sixteenth notes before the 1 to get the change to go smoother. But I figure that's just part of it...the information has to have time to get from one place to the next.


      Anyways, I really have to thank you again for all of your help. Your posts in this forum made this process so much faster and less intimidating.


      If there's some way I can send some support back your way, let me know!

    • Hey man, thanks for your like! We're looking into T-shirts, I'll update you when we get some!


      Yeah, magical, that was my first reaction too when I got everything working. It's been a total game changer for me live. Combining vocals with guitar, there's already so much to think about and coordinate, and I don't consider the whole "pedal dance" as a meaningful part of my performance like working the mic or playing my guitar is. It's always awkward and just another thing that can go wrong on stage... Automating it allows me to just focus on the music and interacting with the audience.


      If you notice that all control changes are delayed by the same amount of time, the LP-16 has the option to offset the timing of the midi track in relation to the audio. I've never used it (I don't notice the delay, frankly) but it should work.

  • Hello Robrecht !


    I'm starting to use your max4live soft with my band. I got a question which maybe seems stupid but I'm not understanding the way to resolve it. In perform mod, I've got five slots used, but when I change switch them from ableton with midi, the modifications I made disappear... Do you got a solution ?


    Thanks in advance

    • Hello!


      A stupid answer would be "just save the slot after you've changed something", but you're talking about what you might call "performative" modifications, right? Things you might do while playing live, when you can't just go to the Kemper and press "Store", like turning effects on and off.


      Anyway, if I recall correctly, the Kemper handles this differently depending on whether you're using the arrow buttons on the device itself to switch between performance slots, or using midi. When you switch back and forth between slots using the arrow buttons on the Kemper, all unsaved changes are remembered until you move to a different Performance. But when you switch using midi, the slots always return to their original saved state.


      The reasoning behind this is explained in the Manual:

      Quote from the Kemper Manual
      • While you manually navigate through the Slots within one Performance using the left and right RIG navigation cross buttons, any modifications e. g. loading another Rig or cranking up gain are interpreted as editing and will be maintained until you move to another Performance. Don’t forget to store before you load another Performance in order to make those modifications permanent.
      • As soon as you load another Slot from your foot controller any former modifications within that Performance are interpreted as temporary tweaks during a live performance and get discarded immediately. If you had for example activated a booster in B Module or increased Delay Mix via pedal, such changes are forgotten, if you switch Slots remotely. This way you can always be sure, that Slots get loaded in their original predictable state during live performances.

      So I'm afraid that's just how it works... :-/

  • Hi Robrecht. First of all huge thanks for Kemper4Live, It's a blast. We did a live performance and it went perfectly fine.

    There's just some kind of bug I'm experiencing on Ableton Live 10. When I'm working on a midi track in session mode to program performance select and performance slot select, Kemper4Live shows up in envelope menu of the midi editor window. But when I take a clip and drag and drop it on my Kemper4Live Track on arrangement mode, I can't find Kemper4Live controls in the envelope window. It's really weird. Do you have an idea ? Thanks once again !

    • Hi, wow, really cool that my tool is being used live! :-) We switched to a non-laptop setup shortly after I developed it, so I only use it at home myself.


      I'm not in my home studio right now but I'm thinking about your question... I've always used Kemper4Live in arrangement mode, and I use the global track automation controls in the track header (the drop-down menus under the track name) rather than those in the midi clip envelope window. So hopefully that's where you'll find them.


      I'm not that familiar with using automation in session mode, but I guess that since session mode is more clip-based, it makes sense that the automation controls are moved inside the clips there.

    • Oh damm ! That was it ! I had to press "A" to show automations.... Thank you very much Rob, your tool rules. Stop thinking about tap delays and stuffs when you play and sing in the same time is a relief. I even set much more precise guitar tonesfor each part as I don't have to remember where they are in the Kemper. Thanks again ! Bye !

  • Hey man!
    I have a question that I know you can solve. I'm having problems sending both midi tempo sync AND cc's from ableton to Kemper. For example, if I send a CC on a down beat or any beat, then doesn't receive it. Probably because the tempo is taking over that command. Why is this happening? is there a way to solve this? Maybe it just means that my USE to midi controller is cheap??
    Thanks!

    • Hi, sorry for not replying earlier, I didn't even realize I have a "wall" here. :-) Unfortunately, I can't solve your question, as I've never experienced anything like that myself. I guess your USB to midi gear may indeed be the problem...

  • Hello, i was looking for a solution for my foot pedal and my kemper. I would like to download your device as it looks brilliant.

  • Hi! I have been reading your guide on midi mapping the Kemper to Ableton live, sadly its still confusing me :( i have the software and hardcore but i have no clue on how to program my channels in performance mode or even turn on/off the tuner. Is here a possibility if you could send some screenshots of what you did on ableton just to help out?