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Need to control external MIDI gear — or for that matter, more advanced multi-timbral plug-ins — inside Kore? Our friend Jonathan Adams Leonard wrote an extensive micro-tutorial in comments, so it made sense to reproduce it in its entirety in case you missed it.

The basic idea: instead of using channel-level parameters as you might in a DAW, in Kore you’ll add MIDI modules as needed to do what you like. That general strategy could be powerful for plug-in use as well as external gear.

For controlling external gear and also controlling multi-timbral plugins I recommend creating dummy source channels that do nothing but contain midi properties for the gear they represent. Each channel in your tone modules’ multi for example could be represented as a dummy channel containing nothing but midi effects.

For a fully defined source channel in this fashion you would add from top to bottom: Midi Filter, Midi Transform, Program Change.

Kore 2 handles midi properties that we are accustomed to seeing embedded in channel objects like DAWs; as separate objects they call midi effects. This is also tied to what things participate in performance preset (aka parameter scene) recall. The basic midi properties of a source channel like channel and port are not switchable since they cannot be represented in a controller page. Unless something is represented in a Controller Page, it cannot be dynamically recalled, unless you consider re-loading a performance using external software ‘dynamic’. Which I do not.

So what you do is add those midi effects to your dummy channel to represent some other resource you want to include in your setlist and then start building your performance presets, or setlist as I prefer to imagine it.

You can do the same with a single instance of kontakt, that certainly responds to multiple midi channels. Since your best memory use is to get all your sampling instruments in a single instance of kontakt so the samples and dfd buffers are not duplicated; point multiple dummy source channels to that kontakt instance and represent the instruments, or better, instrument banks at the top level so they can be recalled in your setlist. Using this method it is possible to consolidate all your sampling instruments including elektrik and akoustik piano into well organized banks that respond to program change. For a more professional approach you can use the multiple output versions of the kontakt plugin and then use the kore command ‘add additional output’ to bust out your separate outputs at the top level of Kore. Continuing as a pro you can setup dummy channels as direct output buses as well.

We’ll be talking to Jonathan soon about the work he’s doing with Kore and the rig he’s setting up for Interpol. If this raises any questions, post them in comments and I’ll bring them up!

8 Responses

  1. Bill


    This looks like a simple way to control outboard MIDI gear from MainStage. I’ve been looking for something like this and never would have thought of doing it this way.

    Thanks again!

  2. josh

    bill, it should work but you’ll prob need a plugin called ‘midi i/o’ by retroware to make it work. it’s working for me great in logic so should work in mainstage.

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  4. Steve

    how would you use midi i/o to make it work? Can you provide an example?


  5. josh

    sure, within kore:
    1- send MIDI out of reaktor (make sure you’re seeing a flashing red light within reaktor where it says ‘midi out’ or you’re not doing something right within reaktor).
    2- insert the MIDI i/o plug-in after reaktor.
    3- choose the port you’d like to send to from within MIDI I/O

    That gets MIDI out of kore to your hardware synths within Logic..

    It’s amazing…opens up so many doors.

  6. Steve

    Hi Josh,

    thanks for your guidance regarding Logic. Certainly another way to control external hardware from within Logic. MainStage seems to be more difficult. I tried using Kore 2 as a soft instrument in a MainStage Patch. I was able to get everything set up except when selecting Midi Out ports from within Kore, the only options I had were Main Output and Plugin Application 1. Also, I installed the Midi I/O component on my system, but it was summarily rejected by MainStage upon startup. Any suggestions?


  7. Bill

    Argh. As mentioned above, MainStage won’t accept MidiO. Also, unmentioned in the article is that Reaktor Toolpack is required for this (which, in turn, requires Reaktor). I don’t have Reaktor, so I’m sunk.

    I’m amazed that there’s no audio unit or VST plug for doing this, but then it’s also amazing that MainStage doesn’t support it out of the box.

  8. jediwario1

    I have kontakt 4 and run it in kore 2. I have 4 midi channels setup as dummy channels as u described and I have one instance of kontakt 4 running. My problem is I don’t understand how u route the midi from these dummy channels into the instance of kontakt, when I tried it the midi just went straight into kontakt without going through the dummy channels first. Your help will be much appreciated.

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