In this series, we will be deep diving into the Eventide H9 and check out it's MIDI capabilities!
If you are unfamiliar with the H9, do check this super versatile device here.
Firstly, the Eventide H9 MIDI implementation is not like most other devices. It's MIDI implementation is fully programmable, such that it allows you to select the CC or PC message you want and map it to a certain function on the H9. Hence, there is no MIDI implementation chart as such.
We will be using the H9 App on Mac to take a look at the functions. The app is also available on other platforms such as iOS and Windows. The connection method is via Bluetooth.
There were some issues with the MIDI compatibility on the H9 and some MIDI controllers, where a dummy message had to be sent after the intended MIDI message in order for the H9 to receive the messages properly. This issue was fixed in the latest H9 firmware, so if you have not updated your H9, perhaps it is time to do so.
In the Mac software, click on "Pedal Settings" and then "MIDI Settings" to enter the MIDI menu.
In the MIDI Settings menu, you'll be able to edit the H9's MIDI channel and other parameters. For my device, I have set the MIDI Receive Channel to Channel 1.
The next option in the MIDI settings menu allows me to assign CC messages to functions on the H9. This is somewhat different from many other MIDI devices where they have a fixed MIDI implementation chart with their functions already assigned to a fixed CC message.
This implementation would be useful for MIDI controllers that are not programmable (i.e. MIDI controllers that send a fixed CC/PC message on each switch). Anyway, this of course is not an issue for the MC6, so we'll just set up the CC numbers on the H9 first.
One very important thing to note is that your CC messages has to have a value of 127 in order for the H9 to register the CC message.
The same goes for the "Program Change Receive Map", where you can assign PC numbers to call specific presets on the H9. The H9 also allows you to use PC messages to control a number of functions.
The next option in the MIDI Setting menu allows you to select how the H9 reacts to MIDI clock messages. The descriptions are there on the app so I won't go through this here.
Using the MC6 with the H9
Setting up a Preset bank on the MC6
Setting up a basic preset bank on the MC6 is easy. Simply set each switch to send a PC message to your device channel on a PRESS action. I have named my presets PresetA, PresetB, PresetC and so on...
Setting up a utility bank
Let's try to set up a bank to call some utility functions on the H9, like activating the Tap Tempo, Performance Switch, and toggling the tuner. Setting all these up would be very easy - as simple as just sending a CC message for that particular function.
I'll just show an example for the Toggle Bypass function here: In my H9, I've got the Toggle bypass function set to CC#9 on RELEASE. I've also added another CC message to engage the Tuner function on LONG PRESS, because... why not? The more we can squeeze into one switch, the more we can do with the rest :)
Notice that I used a RELEASE message instead of a PRESS message. This is to decouple the two messages because when you do a LONG PRESS, a PRESS message will also register. However, if you use a RELEASE message, it will not get engaged if you try to do a LONG PRESS.
Setting up a MIDI Clock preset
We'll now look into setting up a MIDI clock preset to change the tempo on the H9. We'll have a PRESS action send a 120bpm MIDI clock message, and a double tap message send a 160bpm MIDI clock message. We also have a third MIDI clock messages sending a 130bpm MIDI clock and with the "Show Tap Menu" set to "Yes', set on a LONG PRESS message, just in case we want to tap in a new tempo.
The H9's MIDI implementation is a bliss to program. All the functions are stated clearly in the H9 app, which makes it easy to program. I hope you have found this tutorial useful. Please do not hesitate to let us know if you have any questions or feedback.
Keep making awesome music!
The Morningstar Engineering Team