Computer Music: Musc 216
Isadora Tutorials: Control Changes

In this tutorial you will learn how to control VOLUME, PAN, and MODULATION.


Here is the format of a simple CONTROL CHANGE command:

$BO Control# ControlValue

For example: $BO 7 127

This SETS THE VOLUME on MIDI Channel 1 to MAXIMUM (127). In MIDI, all data values associated with MIDI COMMANDS are in the range 0 - 127. Some controls such as VOLUME require all values from 0 - 127 and are called "CONTINUOUS CONTROLLERS." However, some controls such as SUSTAIN PEDAL only require TWO data values, 0 and 127 (OFF and ON). These are called "SWITCH CONTROLLERS."

See the list of Common Controller Numbers.

STEP 2: Open your current Project2Controller

You won't have to add a new scene for the Control Changes because you already created that scene in a previous tutorial (ALL NOTES OFF).

STEP 3: Add the Control Change Actors

In the MIDI Group of Actors (Group 3), add three mew Send Control Change Actors and set there parameter fields like this:

To set the CONTROL LINK VALUE (the numbers in the small boxes to the left of the actors), click ONCE on the label to the right of the parameter field. Add the CONTROL LINK VALUES in the "Ctl Link" field popout window.

STEP 4: Add new Controls to the Controls Window

Add THREE new slider controls: one each for VOLUME, PAN, and MODULATION. Also, create labels for the new controls something like you see in the example to the left.

STEP 5: Set the Parameter Values for your new Controls

Set the various parameter fields of the VOLUME slider like this. Please note the Control Number is 2 and the minimum and maximum values are 0 - 127. In addition, be sure to check the box for "Display Value."

Experiment with setting the COLOR of your Volume Slider control.

Set the parameter fields of the other two new controls as well. The Control Numbers for each new control should be:

Volume: 2
Pan: 3
Modulation: 4

STEP 6: Try it out!

In the CONTROLS pull down menu:



Click on the MAIN scene and then play some notes by pressing keys on your computer keyboard. Move the various sliders while you're playing notes to see how the sound is affected.

STEP 7: Troubleshooting (debugging)

1. Did you get the Control Numbers set correctly? The Control Numbers you set in the Control Slider parameter field MUST MATCH the number you added to the Ctl Value of its equivalent ACTOR..

2. Yo may have to click on the Main Scene to activate the new changes.

3. If your Control Change scene still doesn't work, ask for assistance from the Professor.

STEP 8: Save your work

When you complete this tutorial:

Save your Isadora file. You will want to keep the OLD Project2Controller file you created in the last tutorial. So you can either RENAME that file as something like Project2Controller.OLD, or you can name this new file something like Project2Controller.CURRENT. Which ever you decide to do, you should always keep the copies of your older tutorial files in case you "mess up" and have to start over again.

2. Save another copy of this file and call it Homework12.YourLastName. See the Class Schedule for specific details about submitting this Homework assignment.

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