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MMA @ The 2014 NAMM Show

Beyond the MIDI Mockup: Achieving maximum depth, subtlety, nuance and expression using MIDI hardware and software.

This two-hour HOT Zone workshop session by composer Jerry Gerber provided tips and techniques for musicians, composers and sound designers to make realistic MIDI recordings using popular DAW software such as Sonar by Cakewalk. A more detailed session description is in a separate area of the site linked below. 

MIDI Innovations Exhibit-

We followed our 2013 celebration of the incredible history of MIDI by showcasing some new and innovative MIDI products for 2014 NAMM:

Starr Labs showed their AirPower Series wireless transceivers for MIDI and USB-MIDI devices, along with Clipper, a wireless light-bar controller optimized to control Ableton sessions. Also on display was their iTar, a version of the acclaimed Starr Labs professional fret-board button system made for Android and iOS mobile devices. More info on all of these products is available at Starrlabs.com.

Kiss Box showed the CM-MIDI low-cost MIDI transceiver for RTP-MIDI networks, which uses the open standard RTP-MIDI protocol to connect multiple MIDI devices using Ethernet cables (and WiFi, via an access point). They also showed CV-Toolbox, an RTP-MIDI interface for analog synths with CV (control voltage) interfaces. More info at kiss-box.com.

MMA Annual General Meeting 2014

MMA President Tom White reviewed some of MMA’s activities for the 30th Anniversary of MIDI in 2013, and explained that MMA’s advocacy efforts, along with interoperability efforts, encourage the use of MIDI technology across many industries and applications. MMA also is responsible for making sure that the name “MIDI” is only identified with industry-approved and interoperable solutions. He said MMA exhibits at CES and NAMM have been helpful with making MMA accessible to people who are interested in engaging with MMA, as well as with building familiarity with people that MMA may want to engage with in the future.

Tom reported on a number of market development projects, including MIDI in China. Zhao Yitian (CME Pro) presented a letter from the Chinese Musical Instrument Association (CMIA) announcing formation of a MIDI Industry Committee to promote MIDI in China and support international cooperation. CMIA also invited MMA to participate in 2014 Music china by producing seminars, lectures, demos, etc. Tom said he and Mr. Zhao had spoken to many Chinese manufacturers of MIDI products at 2013 Music China, inviting them to become MMA Members.

Tom then provided a status update on MMA technical projects, including the MIDI Specification for IEC and the Web MIDI API. He also reviewed recent discussions between MMA and OS partners (Apple, Microsoft, Google), and explained that many developers are interested in doing MIDI over Bluetooth and there would be a separate session on that topic in the afternoon. Following the General Session the MMA members met in a private session and voted to adopt an Updated MIDI Electrical Specification (which is pending confirmation by AMEI). Members also reviewed current proposals and considered suggestions for new work items.

The AGM afternoon sessions were promoted as a MIDI Developer Conference in order to include companies that are not MMA Members. Topics discussed, and the companies that presented, were: MIDI over Bluetooth (Apple, Yamaha, Miselu); Web MIDI API (Google, AMEI, Livid); AVB-MIDI and USB-MIDI (Roland).