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Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST

Posted By: Grazilerimba

Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/01/17 04:22 PM

Hi,
I'm a beginner when it comes to digital pianos and currently trying to research some information for a purchase in different price ranges. The FP-30 looks good to me so far for a <1000$ light weight stage piano, there is only one thing that I am unsure about. It only has a USB to host connection, not a classic midi port. Can you use this connection to fully use a VST on the computer? I ask because when I googled this, I came across a post that said "It can only transfer note data, however. No CCs."

I am not sure what this means. Doesn't CC also include the pedals, and would I hence not be able to use the pedals when connecting to the computer to use a VST?

Does someone use the FP-30 with a VST and confirm it can be used with all features of the VST? I'd be using it with the stand that includes all three pedals.
Posted By: Groove On

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/01/17 04:42 PM

Yes the FP-30 will work as a MIDI controller. It does send CC data from the foot pedals.

Perhaps they meant that unlike a traditional MIDI controller, it doesn't have a pitch bend or mod wheel which also sends CC data.

I've never needed a USB or MIDI cable since I only use Bluetooth to connect to my laptop and iPad.
Posted By: Grazilerimba

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/01/17 04:49 PM

Thank you very much, that is great to know. It felt irritating because it wouldn't make sense for Roland to use a USB port that wouldn't allow full use of VSTs in a fairly new stage piano.

Would this also apply to the internal midi recordings that you can make with the FP-30? According to the specifications on their website, the midi "Conforms to GM2, GS" and you can record a "standard midi file, format 0". Does this also include all the neccessary information required to use this midi on your PC so that you can import it into an audio editing program and use a VST with it? In particular, does it record all note velocities as well as all the pedals with their different pressure values?
Posted By: TheodorN

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/01/17 05:11 PM

I don't know much about the Roland FP-30, but I'm pretty sure all the modern digital pianos record all the MIDI signals the instrument can send. A relatively simple way to find out, would be, if someone could record a short MIDI file on the FP-30, then play it in Pianoteq, and check if the pedals of the interface go down.

According to Wikipedia, the GS standard contains everything in GM (General MIDI) and more, so the FP-30 should record pedal use, and note velocities, how hard or soft a key is hit.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roland_GS
Posted By: Grazilerimba

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/01/17 05:21 PM

Thank you for the information. All of this stuff can be intimidating for a beginner. So if anyone else has some more info to contribute, I'd appreciate it. But for now it seems like this piano is really good for the price range. I'll try to find a store that has it and see how it feels like to play on it. Thanks.
Posted By: TheodorN

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/01/17 06:09 PM

These videos have been very helpful for me.

https://www.youtube.com/user/MusicRepoCom/videos

Look for videos with the words Connect your Keyboard in the title. She explains just about everything, there is to recording a digital piano, and in a language that is easy to understand.

What the functions of the various connections on the back, are, difference between MIDI and audio, how to record through an audio interface, and how to record to Audacity, just to name a few subjects.
Posted By: Frédéric L

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/01/17 08:18 PM

According to the spec sheet, the FP30 has 35 sounds... far lower than the GM set. They only say that the sounds conform to the GS/GM which mean than when they choose the numbers of them they use the standard scheme and not a fancy way of coding.

Sending pedals and velocity is described by a very well applied standard. You shouldn't have any problem about it. However, not all keyboards have the same response (and generally you can change it on the keyboard and many virtual instruments have a setting to tune the response). The pedal can change : some are on/off, some are continuous, mine has 7 steps.

Back to the FP30 : you have the FP30 MIDI implementation chart : https://static.roland.com/assets/media/pdf/FP-30_MIDI_Imple_e01_W.pdf p9 you have what it sends. It sends even note-off velocities.
Posted By: Grazilerimba

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/01/17 09:05 PM

Ugh, 38 pages for the MIDI specifications? How long did you need/How much experience do you have, until you could make sense of what's written in that document? Impressive and intimidating. So I take it that it sends and records everything I need. Thanks for taking the time to link the document and comment here.
Posted By: Frédéric L

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/01/17 09:22 PM

38 pages because it can interpret many MIDI events. But the page 9 about what it can send is just a single page.
Posted By: MoChY

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/02/17 08:06 AM

First of all, sorry for my bad English

I have an FP-30, and yes, you can use the piano like vst via midi-usb with velocity.
The pedal that includes works very well, and the three pedals on KPD-70, works perfectly, because recognite midi signals. (Note: sustain pedal KDP-70 works half-sustain, it's possible that you may configure it on vst, but on native integrated piano sounds, works well).
With synthesia works good too, and many instruments play on piano-speakers to reproduce them.
Midi out work, but I don't know exactly, because depend how, the piano sound it's different, maybe are only midi.
I try midi effects, ethnic...like Applause, sitar, banjo without problems.

My conclusion: three pedals, velocity, and midi tested with good results.
Posted By: Lam

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/02/17 10:55 AM

I'm also a FP30 +pianoteq owner, you will be glad it has continuous pedal as well
Posted By: Frédéric L

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/02/17 08:19 PM

Originally Posted by MoChY
With synthesia works good too, and many instruments play on piano-speakers to reproduce them.
Midi out work, but I don't know exactly, because depend how, the piano sound it's different, maybe are only midi.
I try midi effects, ethnic...like Applause, sitar, banjo without problems.


Are the Applause, sitar... comes from the piano speakers ? They are not included in the FP30 MIDI implementation chart (see p 37). If this is Midi out... they should be played by the PC, and you can have whatever you want (thousands of DX7 sounds with dexed by example). A "only midi" sound doesn't mean anything. MIDI devices could be as low-fi as a 256 GM2 bank packed in 3MB (the Windows "native" sounds), and as high-end as a CFX-Disklavier (you may prefer the Bösendorfer CEUS...). If the PC play the sound, the sound will be different from the FP30.
Posted By: MoChY

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/05/17 07:52 AM

Originally Posted by Frédéric L
Originally Posted by MoChY
With synthesia works good too, and many instruments play on piano-speakers to reproduce them.
Midi out work, but I don't know exactly, because depend how, the piano sound it's different, maybe are only midi.
I try midi effects, ethnic...like Applause, sitar, banjo without problems.


Are the Applause, sitar... comes from the piano speakers ? They are not included in the FP30 MIDI implementation chart (see p 37). If this is Midi out... they should be played by the PC, and you can have whatever you want (thousands of DX7 sounds with dexed by example). A "only midi" sound doesn't mean anything. MIDI devices could be as low-fi as a 256 GM2 bank packed in 3MB (the Windows "native" sounds), and as high-end as a CFX-Disklavier (you may prefer the Bösendorfer CEUS...). If the PC play the sound, the sound will be different from the FP30.


Yes, all sounds is from piano speakers.
But as you say, now I understand more thanks to you for some wrong information that I had. I apreciate your information.

I always thought: midi are only signal to send to pc, or piano, but these signals could change a bit on configuration piano to change the sound with function that include on piano.

I use midi out plugin from fl-studio, and have patchs from 1 to 100+ (I don't remember exactly), but yes, they have banks to select too.
I desactivate local sound on piano, and make a loop recording for make secuence on midi piano for example because inconvenient on fp-30...the lack off aux in to sound all vst throught piano-speakers.
I used alicia keys, and now garritan cfx.
Other sounds like strings: alpine project grin
Posted By: Frédéric L

Re: Using a Roland FP-30 as a midi controller for a VST - 05/05/17 01:12 PM

The MIDI events are only like note A4, velocity 75, program 1, bank 121... it is up to the receiver to get render these command in its own way.

There are guidelines : a General MIDI device consider program 1 = piano... but the MIDI standard doesn't come with a set of samples to make sure that all "program 1" are identical.
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