Author Topic: Novation Nocturn with AZ Controller  (Read 4568 times)

Offline azslow3

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Novation Nocturn with AZ Controller
« on: November 08, 2014, 01:58:59 PM »
Novation has different types of devices. Some are really MIDI controllers, they generate MIDI codes on there own. Other are using some proprietary USB protocol and they do not send MIDI codes in Class Complaint way. For the second type of devices Automap software should be installed and started.

Nocturn works throw Automap and it does not "fit" well as a general DAW controller, it has no transport keys and only one "cross" slider.

With transport keys there is a trick. You have limited set of predefined commands in the Mixer mode, but you can assigned keyboard shortcuts. So, in case you assign "Space" key to some button, you have functional "Play" button, and so on.

"User" mapping can be defined to send MIDI to DAW, and so it is possible to use some SONAR plug-in with it. Each control send user defined CC to the specified MIDI channel. In case you plan to use ACT MIDI or Generic Surface plug-ins, it make sense switch buttons from default "Toggle" to "Momentary" mode. And you can use endless encoders as such (do not forget to manually indicate that in plug-ins, simple "learn" can not detect that).

But apart from usual standard plug-ins limitation in functionality, you can not use "feedback". So either you do not take the advantage of endless encoders, or the rings will not indicate the parameter value. And the LEDs in buttons will not show the situation.

Here is how I setup "Play/Stop" button (B8) in AZ Controller:
  • In Automap configuration I leave it in Toggle mode. That will prevent possible flickering.
  • In the Action Lists for my button control I use:
    • Note:Off - Command: Play/Stop (so it reacts on "Off" events as well)
    • - Command: Play/Stop
    • State Monitor (Transport)
  • In the Feedback action list I set:
    • Transport:Play - MIDI CC (whatever my button use) Value:127
    • Transport:Stop - MIDI CC (whatever my button use) Value:0
As the result, I can Play/Stop with the button and it's LED always show correct status (even when start/stop done with mouse or keyboard, but more important for me it is OFF once SONAR stop playing on it's own).
You can imagine that the Record is the same.

Now with encoders. In this example I use "Current Track Volume" as the controller parameter, but that can be anything. Also note that for complicated cases when you have many software "banks", shifted controls, plug-in dependent configurations and such, the ring still show the correct parameter.

Encodes in Automap can be set as "Inc/Dec" or absolute. Ring has different indication for these modes, and there is current limitation in AZC (I will improve that soon): absolute mode will not work for not linear mapping curves, since "reverse" calculation of the feedback value is not taking that into account.
Control Action List:
  • Selected Track Volume
  • Direct Linear (not linear will not work) or Endless (for Inc/Dec encoder mode)
  • Parameter Value Monitor, Ultra speed (can be lower, but since there is only 8 controls I do not see problems with performance)
Feedback Action List:
  • MIDI (whatever my encoder generate) "Value" (as value, very important)
I could see some glitches in development version, the encoder was not always put into correct state. I have even introduces "double trigger" for that, but I no longer see that effect (I had to reinstall Automap because of other problems with it, and that effect has gone).