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Home > Osmose > DAW Tutorials > Setting up Osmose in Ableton Live
Setting up Osmose in Ableton Live
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This article explains how to set up Osmose within Ableton Live 11. The first chapter deals with using Osmose as an MPE controller, and the second chapter shows how to integrate it as an external instrument, recording performances as MIDI messages and playing them back into Osmose's EaganMatrix.

 

Using Osmose as an MPE controller in Ableton Live

When controlling external instruments inside your DAW, use USB MIDI Port 1 (Play port) of Osmose exclusively, see: Connect Osmose to your computer. On your Windows PC, Port 1 will simply be called "Osmose". Take this into account for all the following instructions:

Choose MPE configuration for Osmose's External MIDI Mode

On Osmose, enter the config menu of External MIDI mode and select the "mpe" configuration.

This will make Osmose send MIDI messages according to the MPE specification on Port 1.

Enabling MIDI input from Osmose in your DAW

Open Live's Preferences and click the “Link, Tempo, MIDI” tab. Activate the following options in the "MIDI ports" section: In: Osmose Port 1: “Track”,  “MPE”

Creating an instrument track with Osmose as the input device

In Live's “Session view”, create a new MIDI track: “Create” > “Insert MIDI Track”. In the "MIDI from" of this track, select "Osmose (Port 1)".


After adding your MPE-compatible plugin instrument to the track, right-click on its title and ensure that ‘Enable MPE Mode’ is checked.

Configure MPE interpretation in the plugin

Be aware that for some MPE-compatible plugins, MPE functionality must also be activated from within the plugin. Check your plugin’s manual to learn about its MPE workflow. When MPE is activated in the plugin, 'Pressure' will be controlled by Osmose Initial Pressure axis and 'CC74 (MPE Timbre/Slide)' is controlled by Osmose's Aftertouch axis. For more details, see config menu.
In most MPE synths, the maximum MPE note pitch bend range (Axe X) is set to +-48 semitones by default. Adjust the ‘bending range’ fraction on Osmose (Ext Midi mode > sensitivity menu > bending tab) for a more playable range. Example: When the maximum pitch bend range in your external synth is set to 48 semitones, set the fraction in Osmose to 1/48 to end up with a +/-1 semitone range for note bend gestures.

Integrating Osmose as an external instrument in Ableton Live

When you plan to record performances on your Osmose as MIDI messages inside your DAW and play them back into Osmose, use USB MIDI Port 2 (Haken port) of Osmose exclusively, see: Connect Osmose to your computer. On your PC, Port 2 will be called "MIDIIN2 Osmose" (or "MIDIOUT2 Osmose"). Take this into account for all the following instructions:

Select the suiting midi i/o settings on Osmose for integration into a DAW setup

Head to Osmose's midi i/o tab. Set 'usb haken mode' to "1/3 note only" to ensure Osmose sends MPE+ messages on Port 2. Set 'haken local control' to "off" to route your playing through your DAW before triggering the instrument. Attention: With 'haken local control' set to "off", Osmose will only sound when its track in your DAW is armed.

It's the classic workflow of listening to your performance ‘as recorded on tape’ instead of monitoring the source directly. It will make sure that your performance sounds identical during recording and playback.

Enabling MPE+ input from Osmose and MPE+ output to Osmose in your DAW

Open Live's Preferences and click the “Link, Tempo, MIDI” tab. Activate the following options in the "MIDI ports" section: In: Osmose Port 2: “Track”, “MPE” & Out: Osmose Port 2: "Track"

ℹ️ If you wish to sync Osmose's arpeggiator to a MIDI clock sent by Ableton Live, feel free to also activate "Sync" for either 'Out: Osmose Port 1' or 'Out: Osmose Port 2'. You will just need to make sure that the 'ext clock source' in Osmose's midi i/o tab is set to the same port ("1/3 usb play" for Port1 or "2/3 usb haken" for Port 2)-

Creating a MIDI track with Osmose as input and output device

In “Session view”, Create a new MIDI track: “Create” menu > “Insert MIDI Track”. In the "MIDI from" section of this track, select "Osmose (Port 2)".  In the "MIDI to" section, select the "Osmose (Port 2)" port and “MPE” for the output channel selection just below it.

Click in the MPE box you have just chosen and select "MPE Settings".

In MPE Mode, Ableton Live doesn't necessarily playback MIDI notes on the same channel they have been received on. This is why we need to define the channels used by Ableton Live when outputting MIDI to Osmose: In the MPE setting window, select "MPE Lower Zone" as the "Multi-channel Mode" and "Channel 12" as the "Last Note Channel".

Arm the MIDI track, and you are ready to record, edit, and playback Osmose performances in Ableton Live.

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