Finally I've entered the world of MIDI. I have stood my distance ever since I started looking at Audio Composition, Programming and Development because of a perceived cost barrier and maybe I was right at the time, however things change and if the price hasn't then the accessibility of the price has.
Yesterday I handed over AUS $185 for a UMX49 made by Behringer, which is just a MIDI controller with some bundled software; http://www.behringer.com.au/EN/Products/UMX49.aspx
Why so compelling a purchase? Well it comes with a cut down copy of Ableton 4 Live (Lite Behringer Edition) and some other, free and Open Source programs - which you can actually download from their website here: http://www.behringer.com.au/EN/Support/U-Control-Downloads.aspx it looks like a nice collection of VST plugins, with every body's favourite (or at least mine) Open Source Audio Sample Production Tool, Audactiy. But some software by itself isn't that compelling, especially if OpenSebJ is missing, so what else? Well the package also includes a USB "Sound Card" - the UCA200 which doesn't appear to be sold separately but seems to be basically like the UCA202 except for a missing Optical Output, Headphone Jack and Volume Slider no idea if the internals are the same but for comparison the UCA202 is priced around AUS $50; and I was thinking of getting one of those previously to test if I received a reduction of timing in latency for ASIO.
So what? Well it looks nice too. The real key thing for me is that now I have a way to test MIDI signals and hook them up in the audio tools that I am developing, soon you will be able to forget Ableton, OpenSebJ will be coming to a home near you, with MIDI interface support. vScaleNotes will get a face lift and start allowing all the keys on the fully sampled piano to be playable via MIDI, so people who actually know how to play a keyboard, rather than type, will actually be able to use it and produce some wonder sounds.
Bring on the MIDI.
A word from our sponsors: We have none but if you would like to become a sponsor of OpenSebJ and vScaleNotes, please let us know what Audio Hardware you could supply to feed our new Audio Hardware craving, hmm or a shirt and hat would be nice too.