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Mini TRS Audio Jacks 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 Mini TRS Audio Jacks that are 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 mini TRS audio jacks. 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 Mini TRS Audio Jack

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 mini TRS audio jack, 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.

Mini TRS Audio Jack to Mini TRS Audio Jack

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

Products Compatible with the Mini TRS Audio Jack Cables

  • 1010music products
  • Arturia BeatStep Pro
  • Novation products
  • inMusic (Akai) products

Products that use an alternative signal mapping for the mini TRS audio jack connections cannot use standard patch cords/mini TRS audio jack cables. Instead, these products can be connected by means of a pair of MIDI adapters. Use the 1010music black and white MIDI adapters to connect to the 1010music module 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:

  • ADDAC System products
  • Arturia BeatStep (not to be confused with the BeatStep Pro)
  • IK Multimedia products
  • Korg products
  • Line 6 products
  • little Bits w5 MIDI module
  • Make Noise 0-Coast

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 mini TRS audio jack 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 mini TRS audio jack. 1010music products are compatible with cables that use the following mapping of MIDI signals between female MIDI connectors and mini TRS audio jacks:

 

MIDI Signal MIDI Connector Mini TRS Audio Jack
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/mini TRS audio jack 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 mini TRS audio jack connectors at The MIDI Association website.

 

Superbooth19

SUPERBOOTH19 is the first and the largest European trade fair for electronic musical instruments, giving you the opportunity to experience the latest innovations and rare instruments. At SUPERBOOTH19 the visitors get the chance to meet a large number of exhibitors from all over the world in an incomparable atmosphere. In addition to the exhibition stands, there will be daily concerts and live performances, workshops and talks.

1010music will have a booth at this great modular focused show. Stop by and learn about the latest features in our products first hand.

Synthplex

Synthplex is a brand new annual “All Things Synthesizer” festival/ event that you have been waiting for! Synth enthusiasts rejoice! We are bringing you great experiences and events such as: Trade Show Exhibits (where you can buy gear!!), Educational & Technology Seminars, Synthesizer History Lectures, Master Q&A Sessions with Industry Legends (synth & keyboard performers, soundtrack composers, sound designers, legendary synth designers, etc.), DIY synth building workshops, Live Synth Concerts all weekend long, a Pop-up Synth Museum featuring some rare synths that you can touch and also a Gala Dinner Banquet with live performances and a key note speaker.

Look for the laser running in our booth at this new show.  We will have all of our modules set up so stop by and check them out.

NAMM Show 2019

We will not have a booth at the NAMM Show this year, but we would love to chat if you see us in our 1010music shirts walking around on the show floor.

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Bitbox 2.2 Adds Highly Demanded Features

As a year end thank you, we made an update to the bitbox firmware.  It includes many of the popular requests we received on our forum:

  • Single screen mute/unmute control for all 16 samples
  • ADSR envelopes for all sample, clip, and slicer voices
  • Automated slice to grid feature
  • Control of the sensitivity of the automatic slice scanning
  • Automatic file previewing when scrolling through the file list. (Press the play button to enable this mode in the file browser.)
  • File previewing using the gate input for the selected cell
  • The ability to switch off the master compressor
  • Improved slice playback when triggering overlapping notes
  • New and improved screen brightness control

Download the new firmware today!  (Free forum registration required.)

Moogfest

Moogfest is the synthesis of music, art and technology.  1010music will be demonstrating our modules in the Modular Marketplace.  The event includes workshops, conversations, performances and more.

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euroshield from 1010music LLC – a Teensy Arduino audio and MIDI eurorack interface for synthesis and effects

Los Angeles, CA, May 3, 2018 – Expanding upon their innovative product line, 1010music LLC has released euroshield – the eurorack music and audio interface for Teensy Arduino. This exciting new product can be seen at superbooth (https://www.superbooth.com) in stand E253.

Euroshield lets you generate or process audio and controller information your way, using the best of open source software and ready made Arduino hardware. New euroshield gets you started building your own instrument or processor with a selection of sample code that showcases real world music and audio applications. Euroshield audio and MIDI connectivity lets you integrate easily with other eurorack modules (including those by 1010music) to add unique sonic DIY flavors to your eurorack system.

Features:

  • Stereo audio input and output using the Eurorack -5V to +5V standard plus DC coupling allows control voltage connections.
  • MIDI input and output via TRS connectors.
  • Innovative design combines PCB with the front panel for lower cost and enhanced module accessibility.
  • Additional controls enable users to create a fully functioning product:
    • Two knobs
    • One push button
    • 4 LEDs
  • 10 demo Sketches including sample code for filtering, reverb, and VCO.

System Requirements:

  • Teensy Development Board version 3.0 up to 3.6 sold by PJRC and other sources. Version 3.2 is recommended.
  • PC or Mac for running the development tools and programming the Teensy module.
  • Arduino development tools – open source provided by the Arduino foundation.
  • Teensyduino development tools – open source provided by PJRC adds teensy specific functionality and a highly capable audio library.
  • Eurorack compatible case with power and 8HP available.

Euroshield is now available for $89.95 from 1010music.com and selected retailers. Visit our product page for more information.

For user or dealer inquiries please contact sales@1010music.com and for review and press inquiries, please contact marketing@1010music.com.

About 1010music LLC

1010music LLC is a new company providing innovative digital music solutions. Most recently known for a suite of innovative touch screen eurorack modules including Bitbox, Fxbox, Synthbox and Toolbox, previous work includes Traktor DJ by Native Instruments, (2013 App of the Year); Looptastic, a top 10 selling iOS music app; and MixMeister (now part of inMusic). 1010music LLC looks forward to pushing the boundaries of music creation wherever and whenever possible.

Superbooth 2018

We will be back in Berlin this Spring for Superbooth. We look forward to seeing you there.