Extra notes playing

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This topic contains 15 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by Avatar of alien_brain alien_brain 3 years, 10 months ago.

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  • #3750
    Avatar of Kevin
    Kevin
    Participant

    About three times now, out of nowhere it will send a string of 1/16 notes (similar to default pattern) to my synth “underneath” the sequence I was playing. It will still play my sequence but all the spaces in between the notes will play this string of 1/16ths all at the same pitch. It’s happened on 2 different synths so far. Has anyone else experienced this by chance?

    #3751
    Avatar of Christian
    Christian
    Keymaster

    Hi Kevin,
    hm no I haven´t heard of this before.
    Which version of the Zaquencer are you running?
    Is the behaviour repeatable or totally random?

    Is there anything between the synth and the output of the Zaquencer?
    When it happens, does the output LED of the Zaquencer light up?

    There is two features which could in theory create those kind of notes, “Note Repeat” and “Ratcheting/Delay” (a subfeature of the Midi CC). Have you made sure that these aren´t the culprits and that they are turned off?

    #3752
    Avatar of Tommy Down
    Tommy Down
    Participant

    This has happened to me but only because I had left a default track routed to the same synth as my sequence track.

    Its made worse when your synth is set to ‘omni’ and is set to receive on all MIDI channels. It can take a while to track back what is on what channel.

    You can check by setting all but one track to output to the B socket and attach one synth directly to the A socket. If the mysterious default notes disappear then you only have to worry about your MIDI plumbing. Sometimes MIDI thru combined with a synth receiving on all channels can be a right pain.

    I’ve given up and resorted to little coloured stickers :) Less time cursing cables equals more time jigging around to obnoxious beats!

    #3753
    Avatar of Kevin
    Kevin
    Participant

    So I’m using ver. 1.042 and I have a Midi Solutions Quadra Through between the sequencer and my synths. All through midi output A on the ZAQ. By output lights, do you mean the A and B lights? If so, they are lit up but in all cases so far I’m sending midi through 3 channels so it’s hard to tell if the “ghost messages” are causing the lights. I’ll investigate a bit more on that. It appears to be random. I’ll investigate a bit more and see what it is exataly I’m doing when it starts. Perhaps I’m triggering it some way. As for the ratcheting and other settings, it could be but then I think it would be more consistant. I also tried muting all 4 channels today when it happened and it was still there until I turned off the synth and ZAQ and restarted then it went away. I could possibly record a few snipps of audio this week if that would help. I’ll get back to you here if I can figure out anything else that could help.
    Thanks

    #3754
    Avatar of Christian
    Christian
    Keymaster

    Ok… yep by output LEDs I meant the A/B lights.
    For troubleshooting, maybe you could remove the Quadra Through. It´s always best to reduce components when looking for an error.

    It would be interesting to know if the random notes appear when you press a button, or by themselves. Also once they´re there, to troubleshoot you can check which track ond output they originate from. For the output as we said check the A/B lights, for the track you can check the dots in the LCD in the mixer menu. Tracks that are just sending notes will flash the dot in the mixer menu.

    Please report back when you know more and we can try to help further.
    Cheers!

    #3763
    Avatar of Kevin
    Kevin
    Participant

    OK, so I got rid of the quadra thru and just plugged in my volca keys in output A and volca beats in output B. I tried to route channel 1 to output b but All I could find for option was A or Ab? So track 1 (beats) was routed to Ab and track 2 (keys) was A. I pressed play and whatever sequence I had for track 2 plays fine. The pattern I had saved, didn’t have the drum notes selected properly for Track one so I went into global menu and held down track 1 button and turned the knob to make all the drum notes change at the same time and that’s when I got the string of 1/16ths on the volca keys again. Both midi A & B lights were lit but I guess that’s expected with how I set it up. Beats is on midi channel 8 and keys is on 2 and both tracks were set up for that. Also I could mute all 4 tracks and still get just the string of 1/16ths sent to the keys. If I unmute track 2, I would get the sequence plus the string of notes. I’ll try just plugging in the keys alone tomorow and see if I can trigger it again somehow but hopefully some of the information I have here can help narrow down my issue somewhat.

    Thanks for all your time, much apreaciated
    Kevin

    #3764
    Avatar of Tommy Down
    Tommy Down
    Participant

    AB stands for send on output A and output B. When selecting you should be able to rotate through A then B then AB.

    Have a go on each of the track setting encoders. If you can’t select each of the 3 settings for all 4 tracks then perhaps there is something wrong with the encoder knob.

    Glad the other detecting bore fruit. See you next week! Same Bat-time, same Bat-channel!

    #3766
    Avatar of Christian
    Christian
    Keymaster

    Hi Kevin,
    thanks for sharing your further investigation!
    Another question I had, does the string of 16th notes stop after a short time, or does it keep playing? If it does, for how long?

    I want to try and recreate your behaviour here and would need your support to do it.
    Can you please export your pattern and global settings through the SysEx export and send an email with the files to support@zaqaudio.com?
    Also what you´ve found out is a great start, bould it would be awesome if you would find a way to reliably repeat the behaviour. This would make it much easier to recreate here.

    Some more thoughts:
    Do you have the possibility of looking at the note data in a midi monitor software?
    Most of the times we´ve gotten good leads from that.

    And a last idea: sometimes, seldomly, we´ve noticed strange behaviour with inferior cables/interfaces. Maybe you can try switching out the Midi connections and see if that might help.

    #3773
    Avatar of Kevin
    Kevin
    Participant

    HI again,
    So I had some time to fire up the sequencer today and just plugged the volca keys into midi out A directly and that’s it. I set all channels to out A and got this string of notes appear again (I think it might have happened when I was turning the knob to set the A B output) I should also note, I found the out b setting, turns out I was moving the knob too fast. With all tracks set to A and all muted, it was still sending the notes to the synth. Also with all tracks set to b and muted, same thing. Both times, both midi leds were on. Any ideas what my next step should be?

    Thanks again,
    Kevin

    #3774
    Avatar of Kevin
    Kevin
    Participant

    I should add, I just turned off every note on every track with the Note mute function and still both midi led’s are solid

    #3778
    Avatar of Christian
    Christian
    Keymaster

    Hi Kevin,
    ok thanks for the added information.
    Two quick & easy things come to my mind for you to try:
    - you can try to reflash the firmware (same or also previous version as a try), sometimes that gets rid of weird behaviour
    - you can try to reinit your patterns & global settings (hold page< and stop/play during startup). This will restore all the original settings, so make sure you have saved/recorded any patterns that you want to keep.

    On top of that, please read my last 2 posts thoroughly, where I have already given some pointers how to further narrow down your error. I like to help you, but I´m dependant on your information in this case. Especially:

    - which tracks do the random notes originate from? check the dots in the LCD in the mixer menu. Tracks that are just sending notes will flash the dot in the mixer menu.
    - does the string of 16th notes stop after a short time, or does it keep playing? If it does, for how long?
    - Can you please export your pattern and global settings through the SysEx export and send an email with the files to support[at]zaqaudio[dot]com
    - Do you have the possibility of looking at the note data in a midi monitor software?
    - you can try switching out the Midi cables/connections and see if that might help.

    Please let me know if any of those points are unclear or if you need more information to go through with them.

    Cheers!
    Christian

    #3779
    Avatar of Kevin
    Kevin
    Participant

    I missed your last message when I sent my last one. They don’t stop once they are there. I’ll try another midi cable and this time try sending the midi into ableton to control a vst or something in there. Aslo I’ll send then pattern and global settings soon. I’ll also download a midi monitoring program although I might need some help figuring that out… I remember trying to use one 6-7 years ago and being completely confused but I’ve come a long way since then so who knows. Anyway more info to come soon and like always, thanks for all the support.
    Kevin

    #3782
    Avatar of Christian
    Christian
    Keymaster

    No worries, thanks for sending the files!
    I´ve looked at them and have a Zaquencer here running with your settings to try and reproduce the error.

    I´ve noticed that you have clock out enabled for outputs A/B, so in any case the output lights will be on, because the Zaquencer is sending the clock. Can you please disable that in the Global menu (encoder 3) and see if the output lights are still on when the string of notes appears. As a follow up question, can you make the random notes stop by pressing “stop/play”?

    Regarding the midi monitoring program, are you on Mac or PC? On Mac there is the simple “Midi Monitor”, on PC I recommend “Midi OX”, both are free. Once you had a look at them, feel free to ask again if you can´t make the monitoring work.

    #3786
    Avatar of Kevin
    Kevin
    Participant

    Hey,
    I’m back with another batch of info. I reflashed to the same os and the midi leds appear to be behaving a little better (not on the entire time only when notes are being sent) To answer your question, I can’t stop them when I press stop/play again. I thought I stopped them last week by turning off the zaq and then back on but today it looks like the only way I can stop it is by turning off/on my device. I confirmed that this starts without me touching anything on the zaq as well. I’m starting to wonder if it’s a feedback or harmonic distortion type thing. My table is definitely a mess of cables. After the reflash, I went back to using the midi thru and the last two times it happened, I quickly unplugged the midi thru cable and plugged in the cable going into my computer and got no messages at all. I’m a bit busy this week but by friday I’ll try and get a couple things for you here.
    1. I’ll plug the zaq direct into the computer and monitor the whole session and see if I can get the issue in my vst.
    2. record some audio of my hardware so you have a better idea of what I’m trying to describe

    Sorry for the long post by the way but there’s just a couple things I want to add. After I disabled the clock output and midi through also just in case, it changed from a string of 1/16th to something more like 1/16 on every beat (like an incredibly high pitched kick basically). That was on the volca keys. Next time it happened was on the volca bass (track 3-bass as opposed to track 1-keys) only on the bass, my bassline kind of warbled?(if that makes sense) and then started oscillating at a high pitch about 1 oscillation per bar. Also, last night my minibrute was doing some other odd things with a high pitch I can’t really describe. Before I got the zaq, I was using an octatrack to sequence all the same devices on the same messy table without any problems but like I said, I’ll try to get some audio and more midi info by the end of the week and hopefully I can shed some more light on this.
    as always, thanks for your time and hard work
    Kevin

    #3798
    Avatar of Christian
    Christian
    Keymaster

    Hi Kevin,
    ok thanks for the additional details. I think I´m slowly getting an idea.
    - So first of all, your settings & pattern look fine to me, I´ve had them running here for hours on one machine and there was no problem so far.
    - secondly, from what you desscribe it could very well be some sort of Midi Feedback.
    You mentioned using the Midi Through on the Zaquencer. Could it be that you route Midi back to the beginning of your setup (either PC or Zaq)? This way it might be that there is a Midi loop happening. I have noticed something like this some months ago, also it could become very high pitched with me when using the Zaquencer´s transpose function (the incoming note transposes the outgoing note => if that loops, the outgoing gets higher and higher).
    It could very well be that your former sequencer did break the loop, but the Zaquencer is set to Midi-Through and this may be why it´s happening.

    For troubleshooting, can you please do a very simple setup: Zaq Out => Synthesizer In
    (and nothing else connected).
    This way you make absolutely certain that there is no funky stuff happening inside the Zaquencer. Also it would be helpful if you could detail your Midi setup a bit further, maybe in a diagram?

    Cheers!

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