The MIDI Forum

  Friday, 24 February 2023
  2 Replies
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Hi there. I am trying to find something that, in my head, sounded really simple. Turns out that it is a lot more complicated so let’s see if you can help. I am using an AKAI APC MINI. This is a box standard midi usb controller. I am using it to control a video media server. The APPC MINI connects to the media server via a usb cable and that is that, job done. Now the problem is that the video media server is backstage and I need to be front of house. Since I am using a fancy kvm extender for a keyboard and a monitor I thought that if I connected the tablet to the extender it would just work. It didn’t.
I started looking for something that converts the midi usb signal into something Ethernet, travels through a couple of switches and then comes out to another adapter that will connect to the media server via usb. Turns out that this is complicated…
Do you have any suggestions? Is it at all possible to do what I want to do?

Many thanks
Miguel set the type of the post as  Technical Question — 1 month ago
1 month ago

Not sure if it would be possible. Depends on the devices at each end.

Most LAN, and certainly Ethernet, operates on the basis of packets of data, each packet is a discreet lump of data with surrounding data regarding where it's from, where it's going to, etc.

So, at each end, you need some sort of driver, which receives the data and creates the packet with the necessary packageing, and sends it on it's way, and at the other end something that receives the packet and extracts the data (and discards the packageing).

Do BOTH of the devices you want to link have the means to do this?

Most laptops etc have a network card built in, and drivers etc are in effect part of the OS, so many devices - no problem. But as I said, you need this ability at BOTH ends.

And of course, will the data you want to send allow for being broken into packets? If it's a single user network, i.e. only 1 sender and 1 receiver, then it's more possible that if there were multiple users where consecutive packets MIGHT not be part of the same complete message.

1 month ago
There are USB Over CAT5 extenders that I think should be able to do this for you. You will need a single CAT5 cable to run between the two (can not pass through a network switch). I've used them at work for various other things, like USB audio. I've used 50' with no issues, but longer lengths would probably still work. All you are doing is extending the length of the USB connection, not converting it to network data. There are probably powered versions as well which would allow greater length. An alternate option is an ACTIVE USB extension cable, which can give you 75' or more depending on the cable.
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