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Chapter 1: Welcome to MIDI Designer!

MIDI Designer (MD) is a MIDI controller platform for iOS: a tool for musicians to create custom control interfaces for instruments, effects, plugins, and apps—basically, anything that can respond to MIDI. Interfaces can consist of a variety of different controls including buttons, knobs, sliders and XY pads. MD is the only controller platform that is 100% built, from the ground up, in iOS. All editing can be done optimally on your iOS device providing a fast, streamlined experience from idea to execution. You can work on your interfaces on the train or while you’re waiting for your coffee. MD is very powerful, but easy to use. Instead of scripting, you create complex functionality in MD by setting up relationships between controls. Relationships allow you to dial in the exact behavior you’re looking for without any guesswork.

While MD controllers are often used by musicians for controlling hardware and software, they are also leveraged in lighting, robotics, VJ performances, and interactive art installations. Any device or system that allows for MIDI control is a perfect target for MD.

The MIDI Designer Community creates and shares layouts and pages for various MIDI targets. The Community also provides expert advice and helps solve old and new problems in MIDI Designer.

In addition, various equipment manufacturers, including Antares Tech and Casio, distribute layouts for MD. MD is trusted in studios and on stages by thousands of users, including high-profile acts like Todd Rundgren and upcoming acts like POSTYR Project. MD is been adored by press and users alike.

Since MD launched at NAMM in January of 2012, users have asked for a comprehensive user manual. We're proud to finally deliver on the promise to provide a definitive source of information about MD. It's an exciting addition to the wealth of information that the Community and ourselves have provided so far, all of which is well-indexed by Google and other search engines.

—The MIDI Designer Team at Confusion Studios LLC

 Dream Create Play

Where to Start

MIDI Designer provides you with many sources of information of many different kinds.

  1. Check out the tutorial in the application itself, at More → Config → Actions → Show Tutorial
  2. Watch the Walkthrough Video

  3. MIDI Designer Manual (this document).
  4. Search!—The MIDI Designer website, the Q&A forums, and the MIDI Designer YouTube Channel are very well indexed by Google. Search for what you need.

If you have a problem or question, check the chapter on Troubleshooting—Getting Help to find out more information.

About This Manual

This manual is a work in progress. If you find something missing, please let us know – either in comments (below), via email (use Config → Actions → Email Us), or via the Contact Form on our Website.

Want to help us with the manual? We'd love your help. Please get in touch!

Manual Conventions

This section introduces you to text formatting and other formatting standards used in this manual.

Info – Important, additional explanatory info can be found with this “i” icon.

Tip – Ideas on how to use a particular function or concept can be found next to the lightbulb.

Help – The question mark appears to highlight basic topics of using MD.

Gotcha – Unexpected gotchas that are important to keep in mind.

Important names and concepts appear in bold.

Locations of functions usually appear in italics. Right facing arrows (→) are used to indicate sequential addresses, such as Control Properties Pane → Relationships Tab → Options as Super

Throughout this manual, MIDI Designer will be referred to as MD.

iPad and iPhone — where they are different, iPad and iPhone versions will be specified, usually with iPad only or iPhone only.

MDPx on Mac

Mac implementation is discussed in Chapter 18: MIDI Designer Pro X on Mac


Download MIDI Designer Pro on the iOS App Store

MIDI Designer Pro on App Store

MIDI Designer Lite and MIDI Designer 12 are retired, as are all stand alone versions including MDXW - for the Casio XW.

Minimum Requirements

Minimum iOS / iPadOS version is shown in the App Store listing. This typically trails one or two versions behind the current Apple iOS or iPadOS version.

Configuring iPad & iPhone

MDP2 needs permission to access and control Bluetooth. Permissions are set in Settings → Privacy → Bluetooth.

To insert photos in image panels, MDP2 needs permission to access photos. When you first access the Image Manager, you will get a prompt to allow access.

To revise access later, go to Settings → Privacy → Photos.

manual/01_intro.txt · Last modified: 2024/05/11 22:27 by dr2050