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  1. Jeroen
  2. Sherlock Holmes The Voice
  3. MONTAGE
  4. Tuesday, 06 September 2016
Everyday from the end of May 'till yesterday I checked if there was an update for the Montage.

I was a bit disappointed that v1.11 did not solve the problem of the impossibility of Setting the receive channel of each part.

When I saw the new update yesterday, I thought for a while: Yes! Finally! :-)

But unfortunately the list of v1.20 says nothing about setting the receive channel of each part...

So my question is:

Will there be an update for Setting the receive channel of each part or is that not possible by design?
Responses (16)
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I am also interested in this topic. While I do think the 1.20 upgrade contains important fixes & enhancements which increase my personal “want have” factor of the Montage (user arp!!, connect tool), I am still worrying about the MIDI implementation.

My workflow for music production with a DAW (Sonar) is basically as follows: record something as MIDI, then re-work & tweak it in the DAW, then add additional tracks (MIDI and, at some point, audio tracks). Now how would this work out with the multi part performances of Montage? My understanding is, when recording (e.g.) the CFX piano, I will end up with several tracks (was it 4 for the CFX? let’s assume it is) linked to the different parts & MIDI channels of the performance. I am not sure whether this is desirable or necessary, because tweaking & reworking would require doing so for 4 separate tracks – e.g. if I want to add / modify some controller data, let’s say filter cutoff, I need to do it for 4 separate tracks. Potentially worse, if I want to change the velocity data, the different tracks which might correspond to different velocity layers of the CFX (if that is the case?) might not be assigned correctly to those layers anymore after the velocity data changes. Etc. etc.

So the question for me is indeed, wouldn’t it be better / more desirable to be able to assign the same MIDI channel to the different parts of a multi part performance? Then, when recording to a DAW, one would end up with just one track per “instrument” and could tweak it as usual. For example, assign the first 4 parts of a performance containing the CFX to MIDI channel 1, part 5 which contains (say) the bass to MIDI channel 2, etc etc. When running out of parts, one could render some tracks to audio as BM recommends.

So just as Jeroen, I am wondering whether there is any special reason for why it has not been implemented this way, or if it has just not been done (yet). The only reason for a design limitation which comes to my mind would be if there are multi part performances which, by construction, require different MIDI channels in order to work with the controllers (superknob etc)- such as, e.g., when turning the superknob, multiple controller data for e.g. the filter cutoff is sent to the different parts of the performance (say, on one part, cutoff is increased, while on another part, it is decreased). Is this the case? A related question: what is the relation between “Keyboard Control” (of up to 8 parts of a performance) and assigning MIDI channels as suggested above (in my MOXF8, in Song Mode, I can have “Keyboard Control” on all 16 parts when assigning each of theml to MIDI channel 1, if I am not mistaken?). Maybe someone can shed some light on this.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 1
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Falk has outlined the case nicely. It would be nice to have this functionally: ability to assign/re-assign parts to channels.

I would ask Yamaha to (re) look hard at (re)implementing it.

Thanks
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 2
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Thinking about it again, I guess the whole case is quite complex, that's probably why we have the present, not fully satisfactory implementation. You'll probably need both: recording to multiple midi channels, as well as recording to just one, depending on the characteristics of the respective performance. For multi instrument performances with different arpeggios going on, you'll want to record to multiple tracks / MIDI channels, whereas in my CFX example above -as far as I can see without owning a Montage- a single track / single MIDI channel workflow would be the way to go. Putting it all together and making it somewhat user-friendly might be a challenge. I hope Yamaha is working on it and will come up with a good solution.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 3
Blake
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Falk wrote:

Now how would this work out with the multi part performances of Montage? My understanding is, when recording (e.g.) the CFX piano, I will end up with several tracks (was it 4 for the CFX? let’s assume it is) linked to the different parts & MIDI channels of the performance. I am not sure whether this is desirable or necessary, because tweaking & reworking would require doing so for 4 separate tracks – e.g. if I want to add / modify some controller data, let’s say filter cutoff, I need to do it for 4 separate tracks. Potentially worse, if I want to change the velocity data, the different tracks which might correspond to different velocity layers of the CFX (if that is the case?) might not be assigned correctly to those layers anymore after the velocity data changes. Etc. etc.


When I use a Performance like CFX Concert to record MIDI data there are two ways to work:

MULTI: This sends the 4 parts of the piano on 4 channels just as you say above.
SINGLE (under [UTLITY/Settings/Advanced/MIDI I/O Mode Single): This sets Montage to a single MIDI channel. In this scenario CFX concert sends and receives on a single channel of my choosing.

I really like the SINGLE mode for recording the CFX. Let's say I want to record a song with a drums, guitar, bass, the big "CFX Concert" Performance and maybe another multi part Performance like "String Sect Swell". This requires me to create some MIDI tracks, get them how I want them to be in the MIDI domain then render the audio. I keep all the rendered MIDI tracks in a separate folder so they still exist and I can alway go back to them if I want to edit them further. Here is one way:

Step 1: Create my drum track, bass track, guitar track and any other parts I need. There is a huge amount of content in Montage that includes ALL the Motif XF present voice content, new Montage content...Oh a killing FM synth engine! These parts can all exist in a single Performance that I create and call "Rhythm Section". So, FIRST I create my structural MIDI tracks.
Step 2: Now I RENDER those tracks. Simultaneously. On separate stereo audio channels. It works BRILLIANTLY. I send these generally out the individual USB outs and not the Main L/R UNLESS I want to use the system effects common to all the Parts (which I do sometimes), but with the individual outs I still get the dual insertion effects for the other parts. I may want to use a common reverb within the DAW on mix down, but that's coming later. BY THE WAY: Did you know that in a single part drum kit you can directly route each individual DRUM within the kit to an audio track? You set the Part output to "Drum" and it allows individual routing of each drum. I just recorded a the "Real Brushes" kit using 14 (!) mono channels. And I simultaneously recorded a bass and guitar part out two additional stereo channels. Thats 18 channels total, all at the same time, perfectly. So, I now I have my entire rhythm section created first as MIDI tracks, then rendered to 18 total audio channels. I place all those tracks into a folder track in Cubase and mute the folder track. I set up a decent multi channel audio mix of my rhythm section and move on.
Step 3: I am now going to reuse the Montage hardware by first setting Montage from the default MIDI I/O "Multi" Mode to "Single" and leaving it on channel 1. Then I call up "CFX Concert" and play to my rendered audio rhythm section tracks.

I should say at this point Montage OS 1.20 and Montage Connect is REALLY great to have, especially if you run Cubase. I can capture the Performances used in my song (The "Rhythm Section" one I created along with "CFX Concert" and "String Sect Swell";) and save them in the Sound Browser part of the Connect plug-in. I just finished a little guide about the Connect app that will go up later today. So when I want to call up the Performances used in the song I just recall them as needed.

So..With Montage set in MIDI I/O Single...and my rendered audio tracks playing back...I record the MIDI data for the CFX on a single channel, all for parts on a single track. It makes editing a breeze doing it this way. When I get the CFX MIDI track how I want it I render it to it's own audio track, place the CFX MIDI track into a the muted MIDI track folder. Now I'll mix the CFX Concert audio track with the rest of the rhythm section tracks and move one to the next step.

Step 4: Using the Connect plug-in ap I recall my previously captured "String Sect Swell". Montage remains in MIDI I/O single mode. String section swell uses Super Knob movement and Cubase will record all of that sysex data just fine, but with the new 1.20 firmware I can now Set the Super Knob to a MIDI CC (which is perfect for this Single mode since a CC is a channel specific message unlike sysex). It allows you to edit dynamic SK generated swells in the graphic controller area which is pretty cool. I get this part how I want it in the MIDI domain, render that track, place the MIDI track in the muted MIDI folder track and mix all the audio tracks together...Done.

This is a totally reasonable and easy to deal with workflow for me. The cool thing about Cubase 8.5--and really every decent DAW out there--is you can set audio tracks into "musical mode" (That's what its called in Cubase). If I render MIDI tracks at 105 bpm, open the Pool window in Cubase where all the audio files sit, check the "musical mode" box in Cubase and set the tempo to 105 bpm those tracks will now keep their pitch incredibly well when changing the project tempo. That way, if you want to play a MIDI part in slower or faster it's easy to adjust the tempo of the project and the audio files behave like they are MIDI tracks. It's pretty cool.

Long winded answer...I am actually finishing up a guide that basically covers exactly what I put in this post.

The point is: Montage IS pretty different and it DOES require getting used to some new concepts, but the ability to render tracks like this, this easily and coming out sounding GREAT is pretty remarkably. I am amazed at how good everything sounds out of Montage, including VST instruments. And the Yamaha Steinberg USB driver is amazingly rock solid for both audio and MIDI.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 4
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Thank you Blake for your explanations. Your layout of workflow makes sense to me - sounds like a legitimate way to get a project done with Montage.

However, I still think it would be great to add a third MIDI mode, lets call it "CUSTOM", allowing more advanced users to configure their MIDI setup & channel assignments freely. Since this mode would somehow interpolate between MULTI and SINGLE, I guess its technically possible. Since I am not the only one requesting this feature you might consider incorporating it in a future firmware update.

Thanks again anyway!

p.s. btw, where is Bad Mister? Is he on holiday? :-)
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 5
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Yes, I'm also waiting to see if this function gets implemented before I seriously consider buying a Montage 8. This should be a basic capability of a multitimbral keyboard and certainly one as advanced as this.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 6
Blake
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Jim wrote:

Yes, I'm also waiting to see if this function gets implemented before I seriously consider buying a Montage 8. This should be a basic capability of a multitimbral keyboard and certainly one as advanced as this.


I am assuming you are referring to the ability to freely assign MIDI channels to parts however you want to do it, so I'll address that point specifically as it came up earlier in this thread.

There are valid reasons why this is not available the largest being how Motion Control works, how it addresses parameter level changes and not merely channel specific (and control limiting) MIDI CC messages. Bad Mister has presented this in the forums several times. The ability to freely assign channels however you want can create issues with many performances that have lots of parameter changes happening simultaneously.

When you say "this should be a basic capability" means that you view Montage as something that it isn't: Another basic synth that does the same thing that has been done. Montage is not that. It is an different instrument that is trying to go beyond this "basic capability" and requires different approaches to workflow. It is the reason that the built-in audio capabilities--capabilities that far exceed anything I've ever seen in any hardware synthesizer.

The feeling I sometimes get here is that some people believe that, for some reason, the developers of Montage just forgot to add this ability, it never crossed their minds, and there was no discussion during development about what features really needed to take priority. We are talking about guys that are exceptionally bright and seriously consider everything, including adding real time parameter control that truly allows for some new and different sounds and approaches. Many of the production concepts that that you think you will never be able to do because it doesn't work the way you think it should can definitely be achieved in Montage: Just not the way you think they should. If new approaches are not interesting to you, then perhaps this isn't the tool you need. As someone who has a great deal of experience with Montage--hours and hours and hours actually--I feel like I am doing things I've never been able to do with any instrument. It IS a different approach than something like Motif XF, and the benefits of using the hardware differently than what was greatly outweigh simply rehashing the same thing.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 7
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Deep understanding of a new paradigm takes time and a significant amount of hard mental work.

I've spent a good part of the last week trying to wrap my mind around Cubase's Sample Editor. Not there yet, but making progress.

The Montage looks to me like it requires a similar effort. Like I said in a previous thread, the Montage is similar enough to the Motif XF that you think you know what you're doing. And it's different enough that you're wrong...
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 8
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. wrote:
I am assuming you are referring to the ability to freely assign MIDI channels to parts however you want to do it, so I'll address that point specifically as it came up earlier in this thread.

There are valid reasons why this is not available the largest being how Motion Control works, how it addresses parameter level changes and not merely channel specific (and control limiting) MIDI CC messages. Bad Mister has presented this in the forums several times. The ability to freely assign channels however you want can create issues with many performances that have lots of parameter changes happening simultaneously.

When you say "this should be a basic capability" means that you view Montage as something that it isn't: Another basic synth that does the same thing that has been done. Montage is not that. It is an different instrument that is trying to go beyond this "basic capability" and requires different approaches to workflow. It is the reason that the built-in audio capabilities--capabilities that far exceed anything I've ever seen in any hardware synthesizer.

The feeling I sometimes get here is that some people believe that, for some reason, the developers of Montage just forgot to add this ability, it never crossed their minds, and there was no discussion during development about what features really needed to take priority. We are talking about guys that are exceptionally bright and seriously consider everything, including adding real time parameter control that truly allows for some new and different sounds and approaches. Many of the production concepts that that you think you will never be able to do because it doesn't work the way you think it should can definitely be achieved in Montage: Just not the way you think they should. If new approaches are not interesting to you, then perhaps this isn't the tool you need. As someone who has a great deal of experience with Montage--hours and hours and hours actually--I feel like I am doing things I've never been able to do with any instrument. It IS a different approach than something like Motif XF, and the benefits of using the hardware differently than what was greatly outweigh simply rehashing the same thing.

Thanks for your response on this. Sorry if this has been covered in some other posts. I didn’t see them.

Based on your explanation I didn’t get exactly why such a thing is impossible due to Motion Control. But I’ll take your word for it. At least, I wanted to know that so I wouldn’t be waiting forever for something that wasn’t going to happen. (Some companies only like to talk about what their product does and won’t talk about what it doesn’t do.) Regardless of whether the Montage “goes beyond” or not, it is obviously still a multitimbral keyboard with very generous polyphony whatever else it is. That’s why I’d expect such a capability to be possible.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 9
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
But doesn't the "SINGLE" MIDI mode (using just one channel for all parts) prove that assigning multiple parts to one channel is possible in principle?

I have the feeling (might be wrong of course) that Yamaha tried to come up with a more easy to use interface, as compared to Motif, and that this is also a reason why certain things have been left out / are "forbidden" by the system. An easy to use interface is of course a good thing, but it shouldn't be limiting, certainly not in a pro product like Montage. That's why I suggested to add the "CUSTOM" MIDI mode for advanced users. Even if you could create issues with certain combinations of performances and MIDI assignments, users not afraid of the MIDI jungle should be allowed to enter it.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 10
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I have a Montage 7: I am also really disappointed about the impossibility to assign a midi (IN) channel to each part. I suggest to Yamaha to develop a "CUSTOM" (which should be named "basic";) MIDI mode that allows to freely assign midi channels. With this approach I am not convinced that Yamaha "...is trying to go beyond this "basic capability"": innovation should not eliminate basic and useful functionalities (see e.g. Motif).
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 11
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I would be careful and listen if I were you guys at Yamaha, the montage sounds avesome but the synth is a lot more clumpsy to program and setup than many other synths. The complexity slows down the programming process e.g. due to having to set the same value multiple times in several different layers . The complexity has also led to a mixed response among the keyboard community over the world. Would be interesting to see the sales......So, Listen to you're customers, we wan't to be able to set the midi channel separately/go fix! The Montage has the potential to develop into a fantastic synth, unfortunately it's not there yet....
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 12
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
So the Motgage is multitimbral sometimes. If I want to use one external keyboard to play the Montage piano and another keyboard to play some other instrument it seems that is not possible. I have to use SINGLE MIDI mode get the piano due to multiple parts being used. Then the other instrument is layered in and can't be played separately. Perhaps I'm wrong about this.

This is the main thing making me resist the Montage. I can kind of accept that the performance recorder will likely never even have the most basic editing capability.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 13
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Hi
That's that i was thinking at the first time, why we cannot choose receive midi channels, but after 3 mounth with the Montage, it's not a problem for me, i play with a Motif XF8 and the Montage 7 midi merge and i control also a Reface CP, a Micro X and an Integra 7 from the Montage or the Xf as i want.

If I want to use one external keyboard to play the Montage piano and another keyboard to play some other instrument it seems that is not possible. I have to use SINGLE MIDI mode get the piano due to multiple parts being used.


No you're not obliged to set midi single channel to play piano sounds, The Motif XF or XS have 8 zones for example, so i can control on the XF all Montage performances with 8 parts on Keyboard control from the XF8.

Use the single channel setting to record multiparts performances like piano, Seattle section .... in your daw.
To play on Keyboards stay in multi mode.

Yes, it take a little time to manage how you dispatch the parts on the Montage and choose how to control some of them form external keyboard and choose the parts who stay in Kbd control from the Montage.
At least, you need to have an external keyboard with a minimum of 4 zones to have enought flexibility and memory to save them, i have tow bands and don't have problems to manage all the songs we play.
I have also a Novation impulse for "light" set training outside home, it have 4 zone and 20 memories, i cover all i need also with it.


The complexity slows down the programming process e.g. due to having to set the same value multiple times in several different layers


Depend at what level you want to go deeper, for multiparts piano/Strings pad...., generaly i start from a preset performance, edit the common settings like cutoff, eq, ... with the Knobs in Tone setting,level with faders and it's enough for me, sometimes edit elements of one part.
Of course if you want to edit deeper each part and elements of the Concert piano it take time , the questioon is do you really need to go so deeper for your using and edit all elements from the parts in the performance ?
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 14
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Yes, I understand, but let me say that it is as if I bought a luxury car and found out coming home that has no reverse gear. You ask to the manufacturer and he tells you that you should be aware that you did not buy a basic car and you need a new way of thinking (...and to park!). Of course you can restructure your garage or change house, but I do not see why I should change my NordStage 2 just to play a piano on Montage... I substituted my ES with Montage 7 and now? I hope Yamaha will seriously consider this point. In any case it is not a proper solution to replicate over four (or more) midi channels the same information. It is trick to overcome this lack. This is definitely not a new way of thinking....
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 15
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I agree in some case it's a problem, depend on the second keyboard you have.and the number of zone it can provide.

Ask Nord to allow more than 3 zone on the Nord Stage 2 ;)

In your case,you need to use single channel midi I/O when you need to use the nord as master keyboard, or you need to choose the piano single part performance for the CFX or use the Bösendorfer who is 3 parts for Mellow or Imperial.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 16
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