Thursday, 2 September 2010

QCommander 0.1 Release

Q Commander is a freeware Macintosh application for use with the Suzuki Music QChord. The purpose of the application is to translate the MIDI information produced by the QChord so that it can be used to control other MIDI devices.




The standard MIDI output produced from the QChord presents difficulties to sequencers and external sound modules in that, for example:
  • The strumplate outputs note information spread across three fixed MIDI channels.
  • Chord note information is output on a fixed MIDI channel.
  • Pitch bend messages are used extensively by the strumplate. Many non-General MIDI devices do not respond correctly to this.
  • The Rhythms are always output on channel 10, irrespective of whether they are audible through the QChord’s speaker.
Q Commander translates the strumplate notes to the components of the selected chord without pitch bend, and supresses the rhythm track. Strumplate and chord notes can be routed to the MIDI channels of your choice, and some of the controls on the QChord can be mapped to MIDI controllers. In addition, a virtual MIDI output is provided to enable use with MIDI sequencer and soft synth applications.

This is a preliminary release of the software for testing. Further features will be added (as my free time permits) to enable the use of additional chord types not present on the QChord (such as ninths and slash chords), and to enable closer integration with MIDI sequencers.

A brief user guide is included.

To download the disk images, please use the following Mediafire links:


18 comments:

  1. any chance of getting this for windows 8?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Ron, sorry for the delayed reply, I did start working on a Windows version of this a while back but I haven't had time to finish it (there were some problems with performance compared to the Mac version, but otherwise it was functional). I might get time to do some more work on it in the future, but failing that I can certainly publish the tables used for the translation of the MIDI data if someone else would like to have a go.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi - I'm currently looking into a Windows solution. Any chance of getting hold of those data tables...? :-)

      Delete
    2. Hi Ben, sorry for the delay in getting back to you, I've uploaded the C source for the MIDI processing in the app here:

      https://www.dropbox.com/s/ge2la1tgwnu1w6y/QChordCore.zip?dl=0

      The QChordProcessPacket function reads an incoming packet of raw MIDI data and writes any corresponding output into an appropriately sized buffer.

      It should be fairly portable, or you can extract the logic from it and rewrite it in whichever language you're using. See the comments in the header for the various control parameters. Give me a shout if you need any more info.

      Delete
  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I have some problems with my Qchord trying to record with Qcommander in Logic Pro X. I have a simple Midi to USB Interface, logic recieves data, but with no sound. could someone please help me?
    Thanks a lot

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, are you recording to a MIDI track in Logic connected to the global MIDI output from QCommander? If so, I expect you would need to add a software instrument to the track and set it to live mode to hear anything. See the section "Setting Software Instrument Channel Strip Parameters" in "Working with Instruments" in the Logic Manual. Make sure the strum plate channel and chords channel in QCommander are set to the MIDI channel you have assigned for the software instrument.

      Delete
  5. Simon I have tried numerous ways and can't seem to get the strumplate notes sending correctly into Abelton Live 9. You mention the problem here, but I've tried to get it to work over and over. Any ideas on what I could be doing wrong?

    "Q Commander translates the strumplate notes to the components of the selected chord without pitch bend, and supresses the rhythm track. Strumplate and chord notes can be routed to the MIDI channels of your choice, and some of the controls on the QChord can be mapped to MIDI controllers. In addition, a virtual MIDI output is provided to enable use with MIDI sequencer and soft synth applications."

    Thanks!!!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I have it working now with strumplate notes correctly tracking the chord harmony. But it seems limited to one channel of summed data for the strum plate rather than each of the 3 channels 14,15,16. Is that correct? Does that make sense? If so anyway to get the full data from the strumplate or just 1 channel of it? Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi, glad to hear you got it working OK, I was just in the middle of replying when your second message came through, what was the solution in the end?

    As far as the MIDI assignment of the strum plate goes, that's a feature rather than a bug, as for most applications the arbitrary split across three channels is more of a hindrance than a help. What behaviour is it you're looking for? I should really do an update to this app at some point (the fact that it supports PowerPC Macs and runs on OS X 10.4 indicates it's been a while!) so I'm happy to entertain any requests for features people would find useful.

    Regards, Simon

    ReplyDelete
  8. Simon, I would love for you to make a newer version. I simply assumed you had worked it as far as you cared to and it was long in the past. So far, it is the best way I can find to get QChord midid control that works. I'm using Abelton Live 9 and just bought an iConnectivity AUDIO4+ audio/midi interface. That box has extensive routing and mapping and midi filtering as well. I messed around with it and can't get it to function as Q Commander does on strum plate. I had also looked to see if a MaxForLive programmer had made a device that could do this but not that I could find. So for now Q Commander is still the best bet. I do hope you consider updating. There is a Omnichord/QChord Facebook group that would love to use it and support it. Thanks again! Jon

    ReplyDelete
  9. thanks Simon! I'm one of the guys of the facebook group I hope you'll join us there. I also run a blog on omnichords http://omnichords.blogspot.nl/ and I'll repost this also at omnichord heaven the new site about omnichords. great work! cheers rob

    ReplyDelete
  10. I didnt realise these problems when I got mine so thats a nuisance. I want to use mine live, but I want to route it straight from the Q-Chord to a pair of MIDI synth expanders. Hmm.. Arduino time methinks...

    ReplyDelete
  11. Just coming back to this in hopes that maybe somebody can pickup the work Simon has done and update it perhaps as a MaxForLive device. I don't understand programming but I conceptually understand enough to think that MaxFor Live could be the way to solve this. Anyone have any thoughts on this?

    ReplyDelete
  12. I tried qcommander on yosemite but I don't think it quite works anymore. I'd like to use live with hardware synths so I'm thinking about trying a raspberry pi (I see a few software options).

    ReplyDelete
  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I tried qcommander on yosemite but I don't think it quite works anymore. I'd like to use live with hardware synths so I'm thinking about trying a raspberry pi (I see a few software options like PD or qmidiroute).

      I got here from this link which describes the how this all works:
      https://www.kvraudio.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=102&t=245656&start=60

      Delete