Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

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Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby christianrock » Wed Mar 16, 2016 3:51 pm

I know I can use Android as a midi controller over wi-fi, but I'd rather try and use it via USB. Anyone know of any apps that would let me do that? Google gets confused and only seems to bring me wi-fi apps.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby ElectricPuppy » Wed Mar 16, 2016 4:24 pm

I don't. But if you find something interesting, please post it!
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby soundwave106 » Thu Mar 17, 2016 12:14 am

Android didn't support MIDI over USB until Marshmallow (6.0), which was released in October last year. (See the full release notes under "Media".)

There was some workarounds of course, but fiddling around in ADB / using external drivers is not what people want these days. :lol: TouchDAW is one of the few Android MIDI controller programs I know of and they have a setup page that details many of the possible ways to do MIDI over USB without 6.0. Many of which look... fiddly.

Now that USB MIDI is actually supported native, I'll expect more programs in the future to appear once Marshmallow becomes more common.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby ElectricPuppy » Thu Mar 17, 2016 3:03 am

I've got a 3 year old Samsung Galaxy S4. I'll give you 3 guesses as to whether or not Samsung will ever deem it worthy of an upgrade to Marshmallow. :grin: Another sentence?

3 is a theme.

3 is a theme.

3 is a theme.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby christianrock » Thu Mar 17, 2016 1:17 pm

ok so that answers my question... ahah
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby MetroSonus » Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:40 pm

I have a nexus 5 with the latest OS and when I plug it into my computer via USB, I get the camera, HDD and a "midi controller" option. Neat :grin: Never used it for that though.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby gregwar » Mon Mar 21, 2016 4:47 pm

get an iPhone ? lol

i seen a review for the Xiaomi Mi 5

http://www.theverge.com/2016/3/16/11243 ... smartphone

in china they have a software subsidy model like amazon but still like $260 or $300 for a pretty great phone

i don't think they're gonna eat samsung and apple's lunch just yet for a variety of reasons but man this kind of competition would be more welcome here

it would be sweet if you paid the $200 phone upgrade and pretty much owned it, unlocked and could switch carriers any time !!

*edit: i may have spoken too soon, apple just announced a $400 iPhone SE which is way cheaper than the 5C model at $550 or the iPhone 6S between $650 to $950 USD.
Last edited by gregwar on Tue Mar 22, 2016 3:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby soundwave106 » Mon Mar 21, 2016 5:28 pm

gregwar wrote:get an iPhone ? lol!


Honestly when it comes to music apps Apple has always eaten Google / Android's lunch (and I say that as an Android phone owner).

I'm glad to see Google finally starting to catch up (competition is good) but I think they have a way to go.

I still have a Samsung Galaxy S3, even though the micro USB port (for charging and data transfer) is broken. The rest of it works great, and hot swappable batteries and wireless debugging / data transfer means I don't care too much about that broken micro USB port. I've heard even that fix is pretty easy if you have tiny SMT soldering skillz. (I do *not* have tiny SMT soldering skillz. :cry:)
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby Plink Floyd » Tue Mar 22, 2016 2:38 am

soundwave106 wrote:(I do *not* have tiny SMT soldering skillz. :cry:)
Oh man I tried it a few months ago. I glommed up that there pcb, yes I did. Big Ole Fale Tiem. It is NOT the same as thru hole work. I think lots of rosin is part of the secret...

I've been thinking about getting one of those cheap hot air stations from fleabay for $30 or so.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby ElectricPuppy » Tue Mar 22, 2016 2:55 am

SMT work with a traditional iron means serious fail time for me. I hear the magic is in using solder paste and a hot air station, neither of which I've ever used.

After years of being told not to overheat the pins on sensitive components, aiming a hot air canon at these things on purpose just seems so WRONG to me. :lol:
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby MetroSonus » Tue Mar 22, 2016 5:36 pm

I have one of those gas powered soldering irons.. benzo matic something. It sucks.. :( I tried doing some work on a friends airsoft gun and it barely did the job.. I don't do much soldering but one of those stations with the thermostat would be nice.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby soundwave106 » Wed Mar 23, 2016 12:49 am

MetroSonus wrote:I don't do much soldering but one of those stations with the thermostat would be nice.


A solder station with temp control (I have a Weller WES51) is a *huge* improvement over the cheap el crappo soldering irons you get at Radio Shack etc. If only for the swappable tips.

Perhaps for SMT soldering the right tools make a difference there too. :idk:
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby Plink Floyd » Wed Mar 23, 2016 2:41 pm

I've used the venerable Weller WTP station since the 70s. The first one I had lasted over 30 years, so my current one should outlast me. The temp is determined by the tip. I'm not sure if they make tips under 600°, but for cooler work I just dial back the supply voltage with a Variac. It really really works.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby ElectricPuppy » Wed Mar 23, 2016 4:48 pm

I've got a temperature-controlled Weller, too. It's the bees knees for conventional work. SMT? Not so much. I started out with one of those cheapo Radio Shack specials, too... The difference is night and day.

What do you guys like for desoldering? I've FINALLY gotten the hang of using solder wick. The trick is to flux the crap out of it. I'll still keep my old "solda-pult" for some things, though.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby christianrock » Wed Mar 23, 2016 7:20 pm

You electrical engineers.
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby ElectricPuppy » Thu Mar 24, 2016 1:35 am

COME, JOIN US, CR. One of us. One of us.



One of usssssssssss
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Re: Android phone as a midi controller via USB?

Postby Plink Floyd » Thu Mar 24, 2016 2:35 pm

ElectricPuppy wrote:The trick to solder wick is flux the crap out of it.

I never have to flux my wick. Maybe your tip isn't hot enough?

Should we have a separate thread for soldering and such gooble gabble? Maybe I'll start one when I get one of these >$50 knock-off hot air blasters. Other rectangular tips can be had for a few bucks each.

Thoughts on that machine?

Also, this guy has a good $2.50 idea: "SMD Components Solder Practice Boards"
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