Thomann's Cool Online Guides: Portable Keyboards

3. MIDI Explained

Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) is a method of communication between electronic instruments that adhere to the standard, and also with computers via a MIDI interface. MIDI messages contain information about such things as which notes are to be sounded, when, how loudly and for how long, as well as the type of sound that is to be produced, and general control and timing information. To pass these messages between MIDI devices, specially wired MIDI leads are used to connect together each instrument or computer’s MIDI interface. There are generally three connectors – In, Out and Thru - and all use a 5-pin DIN socket.

MIDI Connections
  • MIDI In – this connector receives MIDI signals from other devices.

  • MIDI Out – this connector sends MIDI signals to other devices.

  • MIDI Thru - this connector provides a relay of the MIDI signals received at the MIDI In port so that a number of MIDI devices can be chained together.

Unlike an audio lead that passes sound from an instrument to a mixer or speaker, MIDI leads pass MIDI messages used to represent music. Try thinking of MIDI messages as instructions such as ‘start playing middle C’, ‘stop playing A3’, or ‘select your piano sound’. Each of these instructions can be sent via up to 16 independent MIDI channels down a single MIDI cable, allowing sets of instruments (e.g. drums, bass, piano etc) to be played simultaneously. MIDI can also carry other ‘metadata’ such as the instrument names for each channel, the key signature, lyrics and copyright information.

The upshot of all this is that by representing music as MIDI information, it can be easily edited, adjusted, and played back on different sounds, or even on entirely different instruments, all of which will come into its own once we start to discuss the auto-accompaniment and song writing facilities of portable keyboards.

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Conditions of participation
Terms and Conditions for participation
in online competitions

Note: Participation in an online competition runs independently from any purchase at Thomann GmbH. The following Competition Rules apply when participating in any online competition run by Musikhaus Thomann:

  1. Competition

    1. The competitions are organised by Thomann GmbH, CEO: Hans Thomann, Hans-Thomann-Straße 1, 96138 Burgebrach, Germany.
  2. Participation

    1. Competitions are only open to persons of full age.
    2. To take part in the competition you must answer all questions correctly, fill in the registration form and submit your entry to Thomann GmbH by pressing the "send" button.
      By pressing the "send" button the participant accepts the aforementioned terms and conditions.
    3. The participant is responsible for entering their email and/or postal address correctly. Entries to the competition will be logged electronically.
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    1. Staff of Thomann GmbH and any cooperation partners and their dependants are excluded from participation.
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      Should for whatever reason the winner not claim their prize, then a new winner will be drawn.
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      The delivery is free of charge. Only extra transport costs and customs/duties must be covered by the winner. In the case that the delivery has to be made through a freight forwarding company the freight forwarding company will contact the winner to arrange delivery timings.
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      Thomann GmbH
      to the data protection officer
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Portable Keyboards overview

Dante AVIO Analog Input Adapter 2x0 Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb Gibson Les Paul M2 Citron Green C.Giant LP-6210C Black Vic Firth SIH2 Steinberg UR-RT2 Roland TM-6 Pro Drum Trigger Module Stairville Wild Wash Pro 648 LED RGB DMX Harley Benton PB-50 LH FR Vintage Series Dante AVIO AES3 IO Adapter 2x2 Fender SQ J.Mascis Jazzmaster 2018 Ampeg Opto Comp Compressor
Recommended
Dante AVIO Analog Input Adapter 2x0

Dante AVIO Analog Input Adapter 2x0; converts analog audio line signals to feed any Dante-connected system; 96 kHz / 24 Bit; fully-functional Dante interface; adjustable signal levels: +24dBu / +4dBu / 0dBu/ 0dBV /-10dBV (through Dante Controller); frequency Response: 20Hz...

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€163
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Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb

Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb, effects pedal, 11 different reverb types: HALL, SPRING, PLATE, REVRS, ECHO, TREM, MOD, DYNA, AUTO-INF, SHIM and POLY, Tails switch: Select whether the reverb fades out naturally or stops immediately when the pedal is switched...

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€149
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Gibson Les Paul M2 Citron Green

Electric Guitar Poplar body, Maple neck, Rosewood fretboard (Dalbergia latifolia), Slim Taper neck profile - .800"-. 875", 22 Frets, Pickups: 2 Gibson Pro-Bucker humbuckers, Volume and tone controls, 1 Toggle switch, Chrome hardware, Wraparound bridge, Mini Button machine heads,...

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€398
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C.Giant LP-6210C Black

Keyboard 61 Keys with touch dynamics, 162 Sounds, 200 Rhythms, 61 Percussion effects, 50 Demo songs, Fill-in, sync and rhythms variations, Split function, Chord, Recording, Pitch bend wheel, Microphone input, Line out sockets, Headphone output, Sustain pedal connection, USB...

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€66
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Vic Firth SIH2

Vic Firth SIH2 isolation headphones, (reduces overall noise levels by 25 dB). successor of the legendary Vic Firth SIH-1 headphones, features redesigned larger driver in the ear cups that deliver a more powerful low end, cleaner mids and clear highs...

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€79
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Steinberg UR-RT2

4x 2 USB 2.0 Audio Interface Up to 24-bit/192 kHz, 2 Class-A D-PRE microphone preamps with + 48 V phantom power, Rupert Neve Designs transformer switchable on each front input channel, 2 Analog XLR/jack combo inputs plus 2 line...

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€311
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Roland TM-6 Pro Drum Trigger Module

Trigger Module For acoustic drummers who want to extend the sound possibilities of their drums with electronic sounds, 500 one-shot sounds, 268 V-Drum sounds, 80 Drum kits, SDHC card slot for importing your own samples, 6x 6.3 mm stereo...

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€789
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Stairville Wild Wash Pro 648 LED RGB DMX

Multi-Functional LED Spotlight with 4 Effects in One DeviceWith its SMD LED equipment, the Wild Wash series is a magic box for events and shows of all kinds. Whether on small to large stages, in clubs of all sizes, exhibitions,...

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€243
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Harley Benton PB-50 LH FR Vintage Series

Electric Bass Left hand model, Basswood body, Screwed Canadian maple neck, Fretboard: Maple, Dot fretboard inlays, Neck profile: C, 20 Frets, Scale: 864 mm, Nut width: 42 mm, Dual action truss rod, Pickup: Roswell VTN4 Vista Alnico-5 Vintage PB...

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€109
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Dante AVIO AES3 IO Adapter 2x2

Y Adapter Transmits two channels each from AES3 to a Dante network and vice versa, RJ45 Metal plug with built-in LEDs, 1 XLR male output, 1 XLR female input, 96 kHz / 24 bit, Robust housing for day-to-day tasks...

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€163
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Fender SQ J.Mascis Jazzmaster 2018

Electric Guitar J.Mascis (Dinosaur Jr.) Artist Model, Body: Basswood, Neck: Maple, Fretboard: Indian Laurel, Neck profile: C, 21 Jumbo frets, Nut width: 42.5 mm, Scale: 648 mm, Pickups: 2 Jazzmaster single coils, Adjusto-Matic bridge with vintage style floating tremolo,...

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€477
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Ampeg Opto Comp Compressor

Effects pedal Analog bass compressor, Controllers for compression, release and output levels, True bypass, Power supply with 9 V battery or 9 V power supply (both not included, suitable battery available under Art. 132579 , suitable power supply under...

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€99
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