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I have a question regard Guitar Rig 5 (GR5) and the Rig Kontrol 3 (RK3) "MIDI out" port and I hope someone can answer.

During live shows, I need to change patches on my Korg A3 and Korg SDD-2000 rack effects. I normally do this using a Ground Control Pro and GCX audio switchers. But now I need to do this via GR5 using the RK3, when I click the "next" or "prev" buttons on the RK3.

I'm pretty knowledgable when it come to connecting guitar effect systems via MIDI. But I am unable to get this to work and I am totally stumped.

From what I have read online, some have said ...

» The RK3 or GR5 does not send program change message via MIDI OUT.

» The RK3 MIDI OUT port is essentially useless.

That sounds crazy to me. Do anyone know if this really true?

Thanks, Chris

  • The manual says that the RK3 does not need the MIDI output because it communicates over USB, but that you can configure something with some PC software. – CL. Aug 12 '16 at 15:13
  • True, but for classic gear from the '80s like my Korg A3 and Korg SDD-2000 rack effects, there is no USB port. Only the standard MIDI connections. Since the Rig Kontrol 3 (RK3) also provide the standard MIDI in / out hardware, one would think you could send program changes to classic hardware. – Chris Simeone Aug 12 '16 at 16:00
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So I discovered something interesting ...

The Rig Kontrol 3 (RK3) does send MIDI data via the "MIDI out" port when the RK3 in in MIDI controller mode. The RK3 is switched to MIDI controller mode via a Native Instruments app on my Mac (not very convenient).

When in Guitar Rig 5 (GR5) controller mode, the RK3 will not send MIDI data via the "MIDI out" port. However, when in GR5 controller mode, the "MIDI out" port can be used as MIDI-THRU.

So, I connected some rack gear (my Korg A3) to the RK3 "MIDI out" port. I set the Korg A3 to receive MIDI via channel 2. I connected the RK3 to my MacBook via USB. I started up my DAW software (Reaper) and created a MIDI track that sends program changes on MIDI channel 2. To my surprise the Korg A3 responded to the program changes.

Since our show uses a lot of automation, I can continue to use the RK3 in the GR5 mode and also use my rack gear by automating program changes. Not ideal, but it works!

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Having tested it, finally (sorry it took me a while to have the relevant kit to hand) I can say there appears to be no way to get it to send programme change messages through MIDI OUT.

I don't necessarily class the MIDI OUT as useless, but for these purposes, yes - it isn't going to help you at all. You'll still need to use your GCX switchers.

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