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Reply To: Vsig Problems (Eventide DSP4000)

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7 years late, I know – but I was able to get this to work using Vsig, DSP4000 (OS v.2.0) and Win 10 x64. The issue has nothing to do with data recieved from the DSP4000, but rather with the borderline 3-decade old DSP4000’s MIDI buffer not being able to handle such a massive stream of Sysex at the rate in which modern systems are able to send it.

Here’s what you’ll need:

An Eventide DSP4000 (:P)
A programmable USB MIDI interface/patchbay that supports MIDI mapping and muting (i.e., MOTU Express XT)

Step 1: Make sure that the DSP4000 (and your PC) is the only thing plugged into your MIDI patchbay that is turned on. Anything else, switch off. Synths should be okay, but sequencers or anything that send MTC, or clock, or realtime MIDI have interferred with the process for me. Make sure your DSP4000’s MIDI ID is set to ’01’. No other ID number will work in my testing. Make sure MIDI comms are setup so that it accepts and recieves MIDI data and turn Omni mode off.

Step 2: Connect your DSP4000’s MIDI In & Out up to the MIDI patchbay – mute all realtime messages going to the DSP4000’s MIDI Input (output isn’t necessary) and make sure that you have set the DSP4000 to only send and recieve MIDI from the port in which your computer’s MIDI comes from. Mute all other ports EXCEPT the In & Out from your PC! This limits the MIDI data to just the DSP4k’s input and output and is absolutely necessary for this to work. Muting the DSP’s MIDI data and muting realtime messages at it’s input is the key to getting this to work.

Step 3: Open Vsigfile, head over to MIDI comms in Preferences. Select the port in which you are outputting MIDI from your PC from. Then, retrieve the module database for DSP4000 – make sure you create some folders for Vsig’s Database, Library and Bitmap locations found in Preferences>User Setup. I put mine in Documents in a folder titled ‘VSig’ (I put mine in C:\Users\***\Documents\vsigfile\), but you may want to simply add them to the parent folder where ‘VSIGFILE.EXE’ is held. Once the DSP4000 has finished it’s data stream, the file should automatically save in the parent folder of the Vsig app – remove it and put it in the ‘Database’ folder you just created.

NOTE: If you are unable to retrieve Database then it’s likely that the DSP4000’s MIDI In & Out are meeting at some point and interrupting the MIDI stream – this was the case for me – in this instance you might want to mute the realtime data at both the DSP’s MIDI In & Out AND doublecheck you don’t have them routed to eachother on your patchbay.

Step 4: Now, with Database in hand, inside Vsig go into Preferences>User Setup and make sure you’re directing Vsig to the three locations for your Database, Library and Bitmaps, wherever you just created them. Restart Vsig. The promt to get Database should not appear.

Step 5: Navigate over to the Empty Program preset on the DSP4000. You can also save this to a user slot if you like, you will be returning here often!

Step 6: Create a basic patch with Vsig, like a Filter module connected to the Left input and Left output. Now the moment of truth – hit ‘Send’ with Vsig. If you did everthing right, the DSP4000 should show a graphic on it’s screen telling you it’s receiving MIDI and then load the patch from Vsig. You can check if it has worked by pressing the PATCH key on the DSP4000. Here, you should see the Filter module.

If this didn’t work for you: do not worry, load into another program on the DSP, and then back into the ‘Empty Program’ preset and try again. This, I have found from hours of testing, seems to reset or at least clear the MIDI buffer, allowing for another attempt. Sometimes it takes a few tries, but eventually the stream will reach the DSP4000 intact and Vsig will successfully send the data to the DSP4000.

Until MIDI solutions, or Kenton release a MIDI device that throttles or buffers MIDI stream (maybe the new Kenton Interchanger will do something like this), this is about the best you can do. Of course, the DSP4000 (compared to Orville, H8000) is a simple beast – a single DSP engine and only 2 in, 2 out. To anyone new reading this; programming from the front panel is not so bad and I would recommend getting well versed in it before touching Vsig. It will make all the concepts like modules, patch structure, userobjects, menupages, etc. much more palatable and easy to digest than flying straight into Vsig.

Good luck!!