Wabbit Wanch Design

Testing testing testing...
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Author:  mel [ Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:38 pm ]
Post subject:  Testing testing testing...

Sysex problems don't' seem to be getting any more tolerable over time, so we're adding in this section so tests can be made with MIDI interface and the trial version of iFCB. If the test passes, iFCB will be able to program the FCB1010.

To start with, we preface by saying that the most rock solid interfaces we've tested ourselves do not have built in cables. In this category you'd have the M-Audio MIDISport series 1x1, 2x2, 4x4 and 8x8. These will require two MIDI cables to communicate with the FCB1010.

The least stellar interfaces is a toss up between almost all of the audio interfaces that sport built in MIDI and the USB to MIDI interfaces with built in cables (and yes that does include the M-Audio UNO which seems to have a spotty production run). You can check in this forum for audio interfaces with MIDI that have been tested by others.

Last, iFCB doesn’t actually communicate with the FCB1010. It communicates with the MIDI Interface, which in turn communicates with the FCB1010. Thus any errors or problems are almost always directly traceable back to the hardware/software for the MIDI interface.

NON Built in Cable Style

Take a single MIDI cable and use it to go from your MIDI IN to the MIDI OUT on your MIDI interface. With the IFCB Preferences make sure that MIDI interface is selected for the IN and OUT.

In iFCB under the Help menu, select Loopback test and run it. If you see any X’s at all, the MIDI interface can’t be used to program the FCB1010. If there is an update to the driver for the interface that might be all that is required to fix it. If you do update the driver, run the Loopback test again to make sure it’s fully MIDI compliant.

Built In Cables (Typical USB to MIDI adapter)

If the interface you are using has built in cables so you can’t create a loop as suggested prior, you can plug in the cables to the FCB1010, put the FCB1010 in Config mode and use Button #8 to enable MERGE (LED ON). With the IFCB Preferences make sure that MIDI interface is selected for the IN and OUT. Run the Loopback test.

This is NOT a perfect test because many of the budget style of these cables will actually be able to send and receive SYSEX messages, but will fail on a loopback test of this type (they drop 2-3 characters).

None the less a brand name interface will not normally exhibit these problems.

USB Hubs

We should also mention that you can’t normally plug in a USB MIDI interface to a USB hub. It must be connected directly to the Mac’s USB ports. USB hubs are quite often the root of the problems. While they might work for simple MIDI, for the full MIDI specification they usually fail.


By doing the simple loopback test, you can alleviate the problems of trying to figure out why the SYSEX is not working, or the FCB1010 is sending out junk. If you have an interface that isn't fully compliant, sending an email to the manufacturer and advising them of the failure is a good idea.

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