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Stereo Minijacks for MIDI Connections Compatibility Guide

Overview

Standards.  They offer us a means of ensuring compatibility by agreeing to all do things the same way.  But sometimes the technology gets ahead of the standards and we have some challenges to ensure compatibility. This is the case for Stereo Minijacks used to carry MIDI signals.  The MIDI standard does not currently define how to map the parts of the MIDI signal to the connectors of the stereo minijacks. As devices have gotten smaller, however, manufacturers have gone ahead and defined their own mapping.  This has resulted in a few conflicting ways of doing the mapping, and as a result, some incompatibilities that are hard to predict until you get your equipment home and find it doesn’t work.

But as always the industry has found ways to enable compatibility between these devices. You just need the right adapters and the knowledge of when to use them.

MIDI 5 Pin DIN to Stereo Minijack

The standard MIDI connector is the MIDI 5 Pin DIN connector. If you have a piece of equipment that has a male MIDI 5 Pin DIN connector, and you want to connect it to a device that has a stereo minijack, you will need an adapter.  But be warned that you need to have the correct adapter for your equipment.  1010music sells a black and white MIDI adapter that can be used with 1010music eurorack modules and any other compatible equipment. (More on that later.)  The MX4 module comes with two of these adapters in the box.

 

Stereo Minijack to Stereo Minijack

In some cases, you can patch directly between devices using stereo minijack cables. 1010music modules use a minijack connection that is known to be compatible with the following:

Products Compatible with the Stereo Minijack Cables

  • 1010music products
  • Arturia BeatStep Pro
  • IK Multimedia products (such as iRIG MIDI)
  • Novation products (such as Launchpad Pro)

Products that use an alternative signal mapping for the minijack connections cannot use standard patch cords/stereo minijack cables. Instead, these products can be connected by means of a pair of MIDI adapters. Use the black and white MIDI adapters provided with the MX4 to connect to the MX4 jacks, then use the appropriate MIDI adapter to connect to the external device. The following products are known to require a MIDI adapter:

Products that Require a MIDI Adapter:

  • Korg products
  • Make Noise 0-Coast
  • Arturia BeatStep (not to be confused with the BeatStep Pro)
  • ADDAC System products

See the Technical Specifications below for more details about the connectors used by 1010music products.

If your device isn’t listed above, how can you tell if the stereo minijack connector on your MIDI device is compatible? Compare the technical specifications below with those provided with the external device, or just try it out. Either it will work or it won’t. Attempting to connect with incompatible cables should not damage devices designed in accordance with the MIDI spec.

Technical Specifications

1010music uses the following mapping. The diagram to the right shows the numbering of the pins on a MIDI connector and the labels of the connection components of a stereo minijack. 1010music products are compatible with cables that use the following mapping of MIDI signals between female MIDI connectors and stereo minijacks:

 

MIDI Signal MIDI Connector Stereo Minijack
Current Source Pin 4 Tip
Current Sink Pin 5 Ring
Shield Pin 2 Sleeve

 

Check the documentation for your other MIDI devices to determine if they use the same mapping or if adapters are needed. If they use the same mapping, then the devices can be connected directly to 1010music products with a standard patch cord/stereo minijack cable.

If you find that the other devices do not use the same mapping, you can use a pair of MIDI adapters to connect the devices. Use the black and white MIDI adapters available from 1010music to connect to the 1010music module, and connect that to the appropriate MIDI adapter for the external device. You could also use this spec to make or buy a cable that converts the signal to the mapping needed.

You can learn more about the state of the industry for MIDI stereo minijack connectors at cdm.link/2015/08/used-stereo-minijack-cables-midi/.

 

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NEW: MX4 MIDI Multiple

We’re pleased to announce a new product: The MX4 Buffered MIDI Multiple. This 3HP Eurorack module provides a compact way to connect one MIDI source to up to 4 destinations. It is perfect for connecting your Arturia BeatStep Pro to bitbox, fxbox, and other MIDI enabled gear.

The MX4 comes with 2 sets of TRS to MIDI adapters to allow connection with any gear using the standard 5-pin DIN connection. It also comes with two 3.5mm TRS cables that can be used to connect directly between the BeatStep Pro, bitbox, fxbox, Novation Launchpad Pro, and other gear that uses the same TRS style MIDI connection.

We are also making the adapters and cables available separately. In particular, the MIDI adapter provides a standard MIDI connection for bitbox and fxbox. Of course, the TRS cables can be used for all our products. The MX4, $99.95 USD, and its accessories are now available from our website and will soon be available from our dealer network.

Thanks for your continued support. We couldn’t do this without you. Please stay in touch.

 

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fxbox User Manual Available for Download

Are you ready to learn how to use all of the features of fxbox?  Then we have the document for you! The fxbox User Manual is now available for download on our support page.  Check it out and learn how to restore factory presets, trigger an effect via MIDI input,  modulate effect parameters via external inputs and more.  Become an expert fxbox user and download the user manual today!

If you would rather see fxbox in action, check out the fxbox Demo Video also on our support pages.

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fxbox is Now Shipping!

1010music LLC is excited to announce the release of our latest product: fxbox!  fxbox adds new creative possibilities to Eurorack, with its straightforward touch screen interface, high-quality 24-bit audio path, and innovative sound manipulation capabilities. This 26HP eurorack module was shown at NAMM and lauded for adding refreshing performance effects options to the eurorack format. fxbox combines 16 realtime effects with control via touch screen, continuous knobs and external modulators. An XY pad lets you control three different aspects of the sound at once to let you morph your sounds in realtime and an internal step sequencer provides yet another way to create tricked out, remix effects. Create complex layers and builds using the touch screen to isolate individual effects. fxbox breathes new life life into pads and other sounds, and can add alternate timing and variety to rhythmic parts. It also can use external clock or MIDI to sync with other modules and external devices. It comes with 50 great-sounding factory presets to get you started, plus it offers a huge number of user presets.

Learn more about fxbox in our press release and buy it now at one of our dealers or here on 1010music.com.

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MIDI Cable from Malekko

Are you looking to get a MIDI cable to synch your Bitbox to your traditional MIDI devices? Want to trigger notes with your MIDI controllers?  Malekko sells a cable that will get your MIDI device introduced to Bitbox in no time. Your MIDI controller is going to get along great with Bitbox. Did I mention they are only $5.99 USD for a pair of cables? I bet you don’t have any cables that color yet, either. So go buy a pair and introduce your MIDI controller to Bitbox, because your MIDI jack looks awfully lonely.

Want to learn more about how to use the MIDI input in Bitbox?  You can read all about it in the Bitbox User’s Manual.

 

 

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New Lower Shipping Prices and Holiday Shipping Deadlines

We are now offering lower cost shipping options.  You can use the shipping calculator on the cart page to find out how much it will cost to ship to your address.

Our cutoff time for same day shipping is 3 pm Pacific Time. Orders received after that time will go out the next day.

Want to make sure your package gets there in time for the holidays? Place your order by 3pm Pacific time on the following dates to get there on time:

USPS Priority Mail Express – Dec. 22, 2016 **

USPS Priority – Dec. 20, 2016

** The USPS is telling us that Priority Mail Express packages will still be delivered on Sunday, Christmas Day, and on Monday which is a federal holiday. So if you want your package by Christmas Eve, order it a day earlier. USPS Priority mail will not be delivered on Christmas Day.

Since the Post Office will be closed on Monday Dec. 26, and Monday Jan. 2, no packages will go out on those days.

Happy Holidays!!

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Bitbox User’s Manual

Bitbox User's Manual Cover Page

The BItbox User’s Manual is now available on our Support page.  This manual is designed to show you how to use all of the features available in bitbox. Learn how to use Modulators, Tracks and Presets to customize the playback of your clips. Load existing clips into bitbox or record new ones. Tweak clip parameters to get the music to sound the way you want. Then export the results to Ableton Live.