Author Topic: X-touch mini  (Read 13698 times)

Offline almeister_65

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X-touch mini
« on: July 14, 2017, 04:11:46 PM »
Hello, I'm new here. I would first like to say thank you to Alexey for creating this site and all his work.   :)
I bought an X-touch mini to use to control Sonar Platinum as it was a cheap alternative to the bigger one. I downloaded AZ Controller and started with the generic preset.  I've had a couple of pm's with Alexey and he suggested bringing it here. I'm new to surface controllers and have very limited knowledge of programming and how some of the logic works. I'm hoping that with the help of Alexey and this board that I can get a better understanding, learn some stuff and get some more functioality out of the X-touch mini. I'll start by trying my best to explain how I use it and the basic lay out.
 
There are two layers on the mini A & B. I use it to control 1 strip/channel at a time (not 8 ) and move from strip to strip with buttons.
For layer A, it is more for strip control, the fader controls volume, rotors control pan, send levels & pans (1-3) and input gain. The transport buttons work as they should and there are buttons for mode changing, moving WAI and some other functions.

For layer B, I have this set more for loop recording and Auto punch purposes. 2 encoders are set for jogging (one for measures, one for beats), and 2 are set for zooming horizontal and vertical.
That's basically how I have it set now but intend to tweak it more as I learn more.

Layer A

Fader is Track/Bus Fader (based on WAI)

Row 1 pads
   
B1 N/A (shift? if I can figure out how to do it) B2 Track Arm   B3 Rew     B4 FF     B5 Loop      B6 Stop    B7 Play  B8 Rec
 
Row 2 pads

B1 Solo   B2 Mute     B3 RTZ             B4 Show/Hide Multi Dock          B5 WAI -1  B6 WAI +1     B7 Set Strip     B8 Mode Loop

Encoders
E1 Pan   E2 Send1 Level     E3 Send1 Pan   E4 Send2 Level   E5 Send2 Pan   E6 Send3 Level   E7 Send3 Pan   E8 Input Gain

Encoder button

EB1 Input Echo   EB2 Send1 Enable  EB3 Send1 Post/Pre   EB4 Send2 Enable  EB5 Send2 Post/Pre   EB6 Send3 Enable EB7 Send3 Post/Pre   EB8 Bank (Loop)

Layer B

Fader N/A

Row 1 pads
   
B1 Set Punch out   B2 Loop out   B3 Marker -1     B4 Marker +1   B5 Loop    B6 Stop    B7 Play     B8 Rec
     
Row 2 pads

B1 Set Punch in      B2 Loop in   B3 N/A         B4 N/A       B5 N/A       B6 N/A     B7 N/A    B8 N/A    

Encoder
E1 Jog   Beat       E2 Jog Measure     E3 N/A    E4 N/A       E5 N/A        E6 N/A     E7 Zoom Horz   E8 Zoom Vert

Encoder button
EB1 Auto Punch Toggle   EB2 Go to Punch In   EB3 N/A    EB4 N/A      EB5 N/A    EB6 N/A      EB7 Resize Zoom Fit All   EB8 Resize Zoom Vert Fit

As you can see, there is plenty of room for improvement and to add functionality. I appreciate any and all comments, critizism (positive) and help. Thanks again to Alexey. 8) :)  If there are any question, please feel free to ask or if  there is anyway I can help, just let me know.

Offline almeister_65

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2017, 03:56:32 PM »
Alexey, here are the X-touch Edit Software Presets for the mini you asked for. Thank you again!

Offline azslow3

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2017, 08:13:56 PM »
I have not yet touched the preset and we have to check the feedback to make strategic decisions, but I have several questions/comments:
1. Do you feel comfortable with the fader for the volume? Especially when quickly changing between strips or for fine tuning, an encoder can be better. The fader can keep its function (in parallel to encoder) or can always stay as WAI bus volume (when strip is track)
2. If we implement multi-strip layout later, it can be better to control not "WAI" but simply "focused" strip. Clicking on strip with mouse or using focus move control (see later) will focus the strip, making the track inspector in sonar and mini always in sync (WAI can follow automatically if required or stay unchanged for multi-strip operations)
3. Are you going to work with mini with one hand? If you are ready to work with 2, do you think having 2 modifiers (so not only "Shift" but also "Ctrl") is still ok? Depending on the answer we can put more layers or more "modifiers" per layer (Ctrl+Shift gives 4x for buttons and 2x for encoders, since "Shift"+Encoder should be "fine change")
4. I propose to use an encoder for selecting strip, that is much faster to use then pressing buttons (for let say +5 strips movements).
5. What is the upper limit of sends you use per strip? Is that really 3 or can be more?
6. It is better to use normal buttons for something with feedback (mute/solo/input echo) and encoder buttons for "silent" actions (Undo/Redo, RTZ)
7. Jog "by marker" is also possible on encoder (in general, an encoder can be used as 2 buttons and that is good for some repeatable operations)

As I wrote before, I will prepare "feedback test" preset. We have to test either LEDs/Rings can still be updated when device is in different layer (Compact is at least partially not doing so, but I could not test LEDs on it). The problem is that AZ Ctrl has no way to detect in which hardware layer you currently are. All controllers/keyboard I have used so far (AKAI, M-Audio, Novation, etc.) behave as expected, but Behringer is... Behringer.

Offline almeister_65

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #3 on: July 17, 2017, 09:21:02 PM »
Here's some answers as best I can at the moment:

1. I'm comfortable with the fader but am open to all possibilities.  I do like the idea of it controlling WAI bus volume if an encoder is used though.
2. Yes, control by focus would be fine and having WAI follow (for single) would be good.
3. Sometimes will be working 1 handed with instrument in the other but I really like the idea of multiple modifiers for more layers and functionality.
4. encoder for strip selection is fine
5. I chose 3 sends because that was all the encoders I had available with my limited programming skills :) (just the stuff you've already suggested, amazes me)
6. I agree about the normal buttons for feedback and encoder button for silent.
7. Jog by marker on an encoder sounds like a great option.

A lot of what I set up on my preset was due to my limited knowledge/skills in programming this kind of logic. I am open to all suggestions from you or anyone, that will help make it a well functioning piece of hardware. The stuff you've already mentioned goes way beyond my expectation of what this will do. Again, thank you for your time and efforts (and what ever other magic you may use ;) ) And if I can help in any way, I will.

Offline azslow3

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2017, 11:03:57 PM »
Thank you for prompt answers. That helps me to not think in all/wrong directions.

And if I can help in any way, I will.
Just please do not give up on that. I understand that waiting and then test "alpha" versions of preset can be frustrating.

Offline azslow3

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #5 on: July 18, 2017, 07:14:46 PM »
« Last Edit: July 28, 2017, 10:23:51 AM by azslow3 »

Offline almeister_65

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2017, 04:33:59 AM »
Ok, ran test and here are results:

a) No Leds for stop or encoders (no lights other than small MC Mode led, telling me that it is in MC mode)

b) Play does not light when started with space bar and stop works. Play on mini only plays for a  mil sec and stops, doesn't keep going if you hold button
Here is what I see in "Last MIDI event" for both

Play-toggles value- Ch:1 N94 Value:0 OFF to 127 | Play ('A')
Stop-toggles value-  Ch:1 N93 Value:0 OFF to 127 | Stop ('A')

c) MC Button-  No led- toggles value- Ch:1 N87 Value:0 OFF to 127 | Shift ('A')
    Ctrl Button- no led toggles value- Ch:1 N88 Value:0 OFF to 127 | Ctrl ('A')

d) Layer button A- Lights on and off-works in conjunction with encoder-  toggles value Ch:1 N94 Value:0 OFF to 127 | Play ('A')

e) Encoder- No Led  Changes Volume of strip when Layer A not lit and Send1 when lit, moves in right direction, moves in really fine increments though

f) Encoder Button- toggles value Ch:1 N32 Value:0 OFF to 127.

g) WAI does update when change focus with mouse, WAI only on bus when focus is on bus. WAI lights track in focus and last bus (WAI seems to work as you expected)

I hope I was able to explain well and give you enough feedback. I'm not frustrated at all. It's a process of development and we are in quite different time zones. It will take time, I understand. I work in a prototype shop for a corporation here that manufactures anti-theft devices in retail stores, I know what it can take to develope a "product"  ;)  I find this quite interesting.

Offline azslow3

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2017, 08:45:36 AM »
Thank! In fact everything is fine.
You have got fine resolution because you pressed Shfit before... it is working as CapsLock when pressed alone (you could not see that)
With Play I probably just have a bug.

I have tried to use "non Mackie" feedback on everything except "Layer A", and that does not work. I am sure Mackie feedback will work,
but "native" could be better. So just one question, are you sure that "Global channel" is set to "2" in Mini editor? Also when you open its drop down list,
which range this parameter has, 1-16 or 0-15?

Offline almeister_65

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2017, 02:42:30 PM »
I'll have to check when I get home from work, but yes, it was set to channel 2 and I believe it starts with "off" and 1-16, there was no zero channel.
The "play" not working may have been something else (loop set wrong) in temp project I was using to demo. I noticed this after I posted and just before I shut down and went to bed. I will double check this tonight and channel designations too. Thanks again Alexey, and have a great day!

Offline azslow3

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #9 on: July 19, 2017, 06:58:10 PM »
I have updated my post with preset. I will do the same in the future, to keep progress at one place.
Please do not forget to re-select the preset in AZ Controller after importing new version.

Still in "feedback prove" status. I have described relevant tests.
But I have also put some ideas in which direction we can develop the preset. While just for simple test at the moment, the preset itself is already structured for rapid future development. So once we clarify the feedback, we can advance fast.

Offline almeister_65

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #10 on: July 20, 2017, 02:49:16 AM »
 Hello Alexey,
Here are some observations, results and thoughts from your recent update:

loop and stop were on at start up  :)

a) no lights in upper button row after pressing layer A button a couple times

b) loop, stop, play all work as should and corresponding lights do too

c) press stop for long time, RTZ, timing seems ok

d) shift and control work with lights accordingly

e) encoder 1 and 2 control track when layer A not lit, send when lit, action feels ok, may need slight adjustment (see below) but no leds light up at all

f) shift button works for fine resolution of encoders, track-volume res is good (coarse could be finer?), track-pan fine-res may be a bit too fine-it takes 4 clicks on encoder to get it to move 1%
    Send-level res and Send-pan res may be just a bit too fine also and coarse just a bit finer

g) pushing encoder and turning works, note value on push jumps to 127, then cc value changes when turned, value goes to 1 when turned right and 65 when turned left
   

answers to questions
1.a+b) I like the idea of more mode switches as long as we can find a way to set punch in and loop, I agree, mode switches that light to indicate use is good idea
2. a) yes I would like a strip mode, with joggers make sense, also made input gain control in there somewhere and buttons for solo, mute, arm, input echo etc.etc.
   b) send mode with modifier(i.e Ctrl) as a strip submode also sounds good---is there a way to "loop" thru sends? like, cycle from Send1 to Send2 to Send3 and if there
      isn't a 4th it would jump bsck to 1? just throwing an idea out there
   c) loop/punch mode would be great
   d) multi strip mode also great idea if possible with the functions you mentioned, default doesn't really matter to me but maybe solo would work better
   e) Plugin Dynamic mapping!! Not even sure how you can make that work but it sounds awesome. :)
   f) some keyboard function would be good, I don't do many non-midi program changes (main instrumnet is guitar), so I play thru amp sim (TH3, Amplitube4), save and undo,
   multi dock (D), inspector (I), and browser (B) are some of the main ones I use
3."Stop -> Undo -> Record again"  sounds like a great feature to have, I use "comping" mode a lot

You didn't mention Zoom and fit all tracks, are those things we can add in?
The way I do stuff for myself is start with EZ or Superior drummer, guitar or bass and maybe EZ Keys, I'll comp and write, gets sounds I want, and then mix.
I think what you've descibed will work out well.
Actually, it far surpasses what I even thought was capable of doing! I don't have much experience with control surfaces (only seen them in videos and ads) and have never
had a MAckie or any large control surface to use so I'm not real sure of what they really are capable of. This is all "icing on the cake" (or Cakewalk if you will ;) ) for me plus I get to learn some
new things. Thank you again for your time and effort!

I've also attached a screen shot of the Behringer edit software in case you need any info from there, meant to do that last time but forgot :)

Offline azslow3

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #11 on: July 20, 2017, 08:29:09 PM »
With rings it is bad... but not the time to give up Mackie mode, may be I just do not understand something yet.

I have made the preset a bit more "interesting" to test. We still need correct feedback first, but I have tried to demonstrate where we go with functionality.

Offline almeister_65

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #12 on: July 20, 2017, 08:58:46 PM »
Thanks Alexey, I will check it out tonight.

Offline azslow3

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #13 on: July 20, 2017, 10:03:16 PM »
I forgot to map other encoders, so it is good you have not tested so far...
I have also tested the preset with Mackie emulator, you should see some rings now (if Mini is able to work with Mackie rings at all).

Offline almeister_65

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Re: X-touch mini
« Reply #14 on: July 21, 2017, 04:20:53 AM »
Hello again Alexey,  :) Good news!

a) Encoder LED rings work! Seem to behave ok and are different. Volume moves clockwise to increase, counter clockwise to decrease, Pan is split/spread?
    Looks like how I think it should work

b) Internal Display appears! 8) Layer A Button switches single to multi, Layer B switches to Plug-in mode! Crtl switches to sub modes!
    Encoders work as they should for what they are designated.

c) I dropped the "_fEncParSet" setting for coarse down to 2%, I left fine where it was. "Accelerated" didn't cause any jumps.

I just want to say, I am AMAZED!!  Holy S*#T! (please excuse the language, I'm just a bit excited  ;D ) I can see how its starting to come together! This really is more than I could of imagined that it could do!
Thanks You again sir! Your knowledge of how this all works just amazes me!
If there was info I left out, let me know and I'll check/re-check when I can. Whatever help I can provide!
Have a great morning, day, afternoon, or whatever time it may be when you read this!