Novation A-Station Panel Resurection – Newb seeks support

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This topic contains 21 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  lupusleodis 1 month ago.

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  • #34671

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Hi,

    I’m trying to fix up the depreciated A-station panel as a route to trying to learn Ctlr enough to get some good use out of it.

    I can’t work out how the request and send dump buttons are meant to work (nor any of the program, bank and snapshot functions. I can see that the request dump button is sending a sysex call for a dump but I don’t seem to be able to get the A-station to respond (there’s not a corresponding stream of midi at the input after the sysex dump request) is this just a simple midi setup issue -I do have the synth on its own in and out port)?

    I really want to be able to dial up a patch and have ctrlr jump all the controls to show how the patch is constructed but I just seem to have broken it!

    I have very rudimentary MIDI and programming skills so anyone who’s willing to be a bit patient with me and help me through I’d be most grateful to.

    Any tips warmly welcomed!

    #34675

    dasfaker
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 79
    • Replies: 784
    • Total: 863
    • ★★★

    After a quick look at the panel, it seems that it already have methods programmed to receive and send patches to the synth.

    Program Change and Bank Select are there to select the correspondent bank and patch in the synth, and then request this patch from the synth or send the current panel patch to the synth.

    Both request and send dump buttons send their midi message ok. If the synth doesn’t respond it could be a wrong midi port setup or an incorrect request message. Tell us how did you setup midi ports.

    #34677

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Yes, bank select and program change work ok (and track changes driven from the front panel of the synth and from the controller keyboard).

    The midi setup is that I have a 4 port interface (Midisport4 M4U) with the A-Station in and out connected to port one of the interface, I also have a Axiom 25 connected via USB which I’m using as a controller.

    The ctrlr settings are:

    Input: M4U port 1 channel 1
    Controller: Axiom Midi in channel 1
    Output: M4U port 1 channel 1
    Thru: On

    The string in the panel:
    F0 00 20 29 01 40 7F 40 00 00 00 00 00 F7

    What the manual says:
    Current Sound Dump
    F0h Sysex start
    00h novation id1
    20h novation id2
    29h novation id3
    01h device type
    40h a-station
    SyCh sysex channel (7Fh or current receive channel)
    40h messave type (current sound dump request)
    00h control byte (don’t care)
    Vv software version (don’t care)
    Vi version increment (don’t care)
    00h program bank (don’t care)
    00h program number (don’t care)

    F7h End of exclusive

    All looks right (even to my novice eyes) so I’m none the wiser!

    #34679

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Does it matter that the sysex request in midi doesn’t have a channel?

    This is what comes up in the midi monitor when I hit the ‘request dump’ button:

    [System exclusive] Ch:[–] No:[—-] Val:[—-] RAW:[f0 00 20 29 01 40 7f 40 00 00 00 00 00 f7]

    #34681

    dasfaker
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 79
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    • Total: 863
    • ★★★

    Yes, everything seems ok. Could be a setting on the synth, maybe the sysex channel doesn’t match with the dump message?

    #34682

    dasfaker
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 79
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    • Total: 863
    • ★★★

    Does it matter that the sysex request in midi doesn’t have a channel?

    This is what comes up in the midi monitor when I hit the ‘request dump’ button:

    No problem, the channel used to send sysex is adjusted in the synth (look at the previous message), they don’t show a channel number in the midi monitor.

    #34730

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Yes, everything seems ok. Could be a setting on the synth, maybe the sysex channel doesn’t match with the dump message?

    What’s the channel in the message? I can’t see anywhere on the synth (or manual) about Sysex wanting a different channel so I assume it’s set to 1 (the tx and rx channel of the synth).

    The A-station will do a dump from the front panel (ie I can hit record in reaper and capture sysex when I dump the data from the synth).

    #34731

    dasfaker
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 79
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    • Total: 863
    • ★★★

    From what you posted

    
    What the manual says:
    Current Sound Dump
    F0h Sysex start
    00h novation id1
    20h novation id2
    29h novation id3
    01h device type
    40h a-station
    <strong>SyCh sysex channel (7Fh or current receive channel)</strong>

    Somewhere in the synth menus there should be a parameter to change this sysex channel (I’m guessing, I don’t have this synth nor the manual at hand!)

    #34733

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Thanks, according to the sysex string what channel is ctrlr sending the request to/for? I have the manual to hand and there’s no reference to a particular sysex channel.

    #34735

    dasfaker
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 79
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    • Total: 863
    • ★★★

    Yeah, I’ve looked at the manual and I can’t find any parameter to change the sysex channel.

    The panel is requesting the dump with value 7F, and according to the manual is correct (could mean all channels), you could try to change it to the current receiving midi channel.

    #34737

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    So, change 7f to 01 (or just 1?) in the request string?

    (by the way I do appreciate your patience with me, I did warn that I’ve minimal skills, at least I have persistence on my side ;-))

    #34742

    dasfaker
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 79
    • Replies: 784
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    • ★★★

    Channel 1 should be 00 and so on.

    #34748

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Of course, I’m not yet a natural Hex counter…;-)

    Cheers.

    #34776

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Changing the channel seems to make no difference, however I have got as far as noting that if I send a dump from the front of the synth the panel updates as expected (so this is some useful progress in terms of usability but I’d really like to work ‘properly’).

    I’m guessing that I’m missing something stupidly simple here but I’m at a complete loss as to how I go about working out what it is!

    #34779

    dasfaker
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 79
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    • Total: 863
    • ★★★

    Does the synth respond to the rest of modulators of the panel?

    #34784

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Yup, it all works exactly as expected (and as I mentioned the bank and patch on the panel updates correctly whether I set it from the synth or the controller) it’s just this command to prompt the synth to dump its data it seems.

    #34834

    dasfaker
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 79
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    • Total: 863
    • ★★★

    Then I’m totally lost. Midi communication works in both directions, except the dump request response (a message that seems ok). If I can think of something else I’ll post here.

    #34840

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Thanks, that’s about where I’m up to too. I’ve just messaged Novation to see if they can advise on the dump request string or the necessary synth settings to make it respond.

    I’ve also tried playing with midiox and I can’t get the synth to respond there either. I put the dump string in the sysex view, if I do ‘send and receive’ I can see the sting go out but with no response, but when I send the voice dump from the front of the synth I get the patch.

    #34935
    lfo2vco
    lfo2vco
    Participant
    • Topics: 25
    • Replies: 159
    • Total: 184
    • ★★

    Hi Guys,

    OK if the panel is in the depreciated section it may keen that the lua scripting is out of date when used with the latest version of ctrlr.

    As far as I know (and I’m no expert) Atom made some changes to syntax a while back. It is most likely that the method used to distribute the sysex dump data to the various controls needs to be updated accordingly.

    I would suggest that you find the method in the A-Station panel that does this task and compare it with similar from an up to date panel. The difference in syntax may be quite subtle, so you may have to dig deep.

    I hope this helps.

    Here is some noise I organised into an acceptable format:
    https://soundcloud.com/lfo2vco/a-dark-crystal

    #34954

    rothchild
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 13
    • Total: 14

    Thanks lf02vco,

    I will get to trying to find out if it’s the panel once I’ve discounted the synth. As I’ve mentioned above, the panel responds to a patch sent from the synth (as does MIDIOX) but the synth doesn’t respond to the dump request string from either app.

    Once I’ve go this working I’ll almost certainly be back for more help as the dump current sound button doesn’t work as expected either, but we’ll save that for later!

    Hopefully Novation will get back to me with an answer in the next couple of days so I can progress this.

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