Basic MIDI SETUP Instructions

Last updated on 7/28/2011
The information in this article applies to:
  • SONAR (All SONAR Family Products)
  • Pro Audio
  • Home Studio
  • Music Creator (All Versions)
  • Guitar Tracks Pro 4
  • Express
  • Guitar Studio
One of the most common questions we get from beginning users is how to properly set up their MIDI gear (external synths) for use with their Cakewalk product. These simple step should help you get started.

The first step in getting MIDI in and out to function properly is tomake sure the cabling to your keyboard is correct. You need to connect the port on your interface marked OUT to the port on your keyboard marked IN, and IN to OUT. If you have a USB capable controller, make sure this is plugged into it's own USB port rather than a USB hub.

Software Setup
Next, choose Options | MIDI Devices choose the MIDI IN and MIDI OUT of your soundcard/MIDI interface, and click on Move selected devices to top (only the output side will move). You'll now be able to record from and playback to your keyboard. Make sure you've got speakers or headphones connected to that instrument. Or run the audio output of your keyboard/synth to the Line in jack on your sound card.

Every MIDI track with a different instrument or patch, has to be on a different channel. Your keyboard must be in its multi-timbral mode and local control must be turned off.

If you are using a synth module or hardware synth (not a MIDI controller) and you have a Cakewalk product with Instrument Definition capability, you should import that definition for your specific synth. To import instrument definitions into Cakewalk, click Options | Instruments | Define | Import. Use the navigation window to locate the instrument file (look for .INS files in the Sample Content folder) and click Open.  Next choose one or more instrument definitions from the Import Instrument Definitions window and click OK. Click Close and you'll be returned to the Assign Instruments window. You can then assign your new instruments definition(s) to the proper port and channel assignments. Note: you may need to route channel 10 specifically to a Drum Instrument definition file. If none is available, route all channels to the single definition. NOTE - Certain Cakewalk products, such as Music Creator, do not have Instrument Definition capability.

Now go to your MIDI track and set up the proper Channel, Bank and Patch in order to choose the correct sound on your synth.

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