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Den stora Thomann Online-Rådgivaren: Portable Keyboards

4. General MIDI, GS & XG

It was realised fairly early-on that a problem with the MIDI specification was that there was no definition of what type of sound should be heard when a particular patch number is selected - e.g. ‘Bank 1 / Patch 1’ might be ‘Brass’ on one device and ‘Oboe’ on another. So if a MIDI File (see below) was created using one instrument, the sounds used would be unlikely to match up when the MIDI data was played back by a different MIDI instrument. To solve this problem, a set of sounds called General MIDI or GM (not to be confused with genetically modified!) was conceived.

General MIDI Logo

The GM specification also details that MIDI Channel 10 should be reserved for unpitched percussion sounds, and the rest for pitched sounds arranged into 16 families of instruments. To enable a number of unpitched percussion sounds to be played simultaneously, the specification also lays down specific individual notes that these are assigned to, rather than separate patches, so the kick drum is always on the same note, the snare on another and so on. The advantage of this is that a pre-programmed MIDI File containing the instructions for a piece of music will also be able to choose all the correct instruments in the arrangement. Note however that General MIDI only defines the names of the patches - how each one actually sounds is down to the manufacturers of each different instrument. Of course in practice, manufacturers want their products to sound good when playing back MIDI Files, and so this is rarely a problem.

Although the GM specification enabled industry-wide compatibility, some manufacturers felt that further features needed to be added in order to keep up with technological advances, such as the addition of onboard effects processing to provide reverb, delay and chorus. As a result, General MIDI 2 (GM2) was introduced which implemented these changes, but maintained backward compatibility with the original GM standard. In terms of sounds, other manufacturers created their own extensions to the specification - Roland’s GS and Yamaha’s XG standards both expanding the range of sounds from 128 to over 600. The MIDI specification continues to develop as other industries make use of it - for instance the mobile phone market utilise a cut-down ‘GM Lite’ MIDI File format to play the basic music synthesizers in phones, and some computer soundchips also support this. These days, you will see the logos for General MIDI, GS, XG or combinations thereof on most portable keyboards – this is your sign that you will be able to purchase and download pre-made MIDI Files and play them on your instrument.

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Portable Keyboards översikt

Elektron Digitakt Millenium ST-95 Harley Benton HB-40B 2017 Harley Benton CST-24T Ocean Flame Vox Adio Air GT Rockboard LT XL Power Bank Denon DN-300C MKII ADJ Pro Event Table tc electronic M100 Presonus Studio 26 Novation Circuit Mono Station Vox AC2 Rhythm Bass
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Elektron Digitakt

Digital Drum Machine 8 Internal audio tracks, 8 Dedicated MIDI tracks, 1 Multimode filter per audio track, 1 Assignable LFO per track, Delay and Reverb send effects, Built-in sequencer, Support for sampling, OLED display, 64 MB Sample memory, 1...

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749 €
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Millenium ST-95

Standing Aid Ideal for keyboardists, guitarists and DJs, Seat height, backrest and footrests individually adjustable, Seat upholstery and backrest with cover, Seat height adjustable from 545 - 965 mm, Padded seat, Weight: 6 kg, Material: Steel, Colour: Black, Suitable...

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79 €
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Harley Benton HB-40B 2017

Harley Benton HB-40B 2017, compact electric bass combo amplifier, 40 watt, 10" custom voiced speaker, TEC tube-emulating circuit, instrument input, gain control, integrated compressor with LED indicator, 3-band equalizer (bass, parametric middle, treble), volume control, headphone output, aux-input for play-along...

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99 €
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Harley Benton CST-24T Ocean Flame

Electric Guitar Deluxe series, Body: Mahogany, Top: Flamed maple, Set-in neck: Mahogany, Fretboard: Roseacer, 24 frets, Pearloid Dot fretboard inlays, Scale: 635 mm, Nut width: 42 mm, Pickups: 2 Wilkinson WHHB Alnico Open humbuckers, 1 Volume control, 1 Tone...

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226 €
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Vox Adio Air GT

Modelling Electric Guitar Combo Power: 50 W, Equipped with: 2x 3"speakers for a wide stereo sound, Bluetooth allows wireless playback of music and remote control via app, VET Modelling technology for authentic amp sounds, Up to 23 amplifier models,...

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299 €
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Rockboard LT XL Power Bank

Mobile power supply for effects pedals 3 High-capacity lithium-ion batteries, Battery capacity: 6600 mAh, Can still be used during a recharge, Can also be used for charging smartphones and other USB devices, On / Off switch, 2x 2.1 x...

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49 €
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Denon DN-300C MKII

Denon DN-300C MK II, CD/USB Player, Slot-In CD - Drive, USB Audio Player, USB plays MP3 audio file formats, 3,5 mm Jack Input, Display, symmetric XLR Output, stereo RCA Output, adjustable speed ±15%, Random, Repeat and Power-on-Play, IR Remote, 10-key...

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239 €
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ADJ Pro Event Table

ADJ Pro Event Table, Compact and collapsible, Lightweight, around 18 kg, Functional and professional looking, table height: 880mm, dimensions table 1200x580mm; Dimensions (LxWxH): 50” x 24” x 45.5” / 1270 x 610 x 1155 mm, Dimensions for own Logo (WxH):...

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325 €
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tc electronic M100

tc electronic M100; Stereo Multi-Effects Processor; 16 TC-Effects including reverb, delay, chorus, flanger, phaser, rotary speaker, pitch shifter and multi-effects; Edit and Tap/Select function; 24-bit AD/DA converters; Stereo Input Level control with LED level indication; Mix Balance and Output Level...

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111 €
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Presonus Studio 26

USB audio interface 2 x 4 USB 2.0 audio interface with 192 KHz, 2 Combo inputs: Mic/Line/Inst (XLR/jack), Jack inputs switchable from "Inst" (high impedance) to "Line", 2 Low-noise XMAX-L microphone preamplifiers, 48 V phantom power can be connected,...

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199 €
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Novation Circuit Mono Station

Paraphonic Analogue Synthesizer 2 Oscillators with individual control of sync and tuning parameters, Filter can be used as high, low or bandpass filters with 12 or 24 dB, Three distortion modes, Monophone and paraphone modes with individual glide control,...

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522 €
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Vox AC2 Rhythm Bass

Vox AC2 Rhythm Bass, Basscombo, 2x3" Speaker, 2 Watt, 5 effects, 3 selectable sounds normal flat and scoop, inputs for bassguitar and aux in, headphone output, 81 rhythm patterns, tempo 40-240 BPM, power supply via 6 AA batteries (alkaline or...

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69 €
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