• Register
  • Help
Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 22

Topic: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

Share/Bookmark
  1. #1
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Orcas Island
    Posts
    11,454

    Arrow GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    There is a great deal of discussion going on about a proposed Audio/MIDI standard - GMPI (ad hoc name for the Generalized Music Plug-In Interface) to replace the alphabet soup of audio standards (VST/DX/MIDI/AU etc).

    The goal of GMPI is to converge all the audio/MIDI standards into one compatible cross-platform standard. A GMPI plugin that will work in one audio application would theoretically work in ALL audio applications.

    The GMPI working group of the MIDI Manufacturer's Association (MMA) is working on defining the technical requirements of GMPI. Like MIDI, GMPI will be license/royalty free.

    Ideally a GMPI plug-in should be relatively straight forward to program and make things easy for the user. There is discussion as to whether it will allow for some backward compatibility (such as work with existing MIDI spec) and also it is planned to allow for future growth.

    According to Cakewalk's Ron Kuper (GMPI Working Group chair and GPO User), "The objective of the GMPI working group is to create a unified cross-platform music plug-in interface. This new interface is hoped to provide an alternative choice to the multitude of plug-in interfaces that exist today. Among the many benefits of standardization are increased choice for customers, lower cost for music plug-in vendors and a secure future for valuable market-enabling technology." More information about GMPI can be found at: http://www.gmpi-plugins.org/gmpi/req...s.php#sec_3.13

    I like the idea of offering libraries in one standard. And I've been looking forward to a higher-rsolution MIDI which GMPI may provide. Such a standard may also provide more options for newfangled human-interface options.

    What do you think about such a standard?

    And what would you like to see included in such a standard?

    Gary Garritan

    PS: If we get large enough of a discussion on this topic I will forward your comments to the GMPI Working Group

  2. #2

    Question Re: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garritan
    And I've been looking forward to a higher-rsolution MIDI which GMPI may provide.
    Hey Gary,

    I'm not so sure that we need more than what is provided with 14-bit MIDI, as long as the timing is accurate. The MIDI spec already provides for time stamping of data for re-sync on receipt - it's just a matter of vendors agreeing to implement it. One of the successes of MIDI was also it's failing - in that it didn't require certain types of interfacing or hardware config, so it was up to the vendor to comply with the spec. Getting two 7-bit nibbelized bytes as fast as the host can talk to the plug-in sounds good to me (which we already get with VST) as long as the host plays nicely on things like delay compensation (although this is more of an issue of DSP).

    If there was a need to address more than the MIDI spec can handle or a resolution or data throughput that could change the way we work - I'd be all for it. I had several long conversations with Bob Moog about this when I worked for him, and it basically came back to the need to standardize and upgrade the quality of interfaces more than a new data standard. It will be interesting to go through the site and see what the advantages to the standards might be - beyond ubiquity. Being completely heterogenous is a powerful arguement, but one that doesn't get me too excited. I would imagine that anyone using one plug-in technology or another would feel the same.

    ON THE OTHER HAND - if it made plug-ins cheaper (by reducing development resources in making on plug-in to rule them all) the I'd be all for it!!
    Houston Haynes - Titan Line Music

  3. #3

    Re: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    Wasn't this the idea behind AU's? In the end Apple made their software support it and that's about it.

    I for one would LOVE to get some formats standardized - look how much more stable MIDI is in OSX vs. OS9 with OMS, Free MIDI and the like. But I'm not sure everyone would agree to do this.


    Some things I would love to see would be greater resolution for MIDI info - maybe instead of all values being regulated from 0-127, it could be 1-500. This would be much more fine resolutions that could be very helpful for some applications.

    Timing of course is the big thing that we would love to have tighter. With current technology it seems like we should be able to get MIDI timing to be pretty sample accurate.

    All that to say, I would enjoy such a standard, but I don't know if companies would really adopt it. The companies I'm talking about are not 3rd party developers, but rather companies like Steinberg, Apple, etc. The format companies!! Would they really adopt such a format?


    But sure, I'd use it!


    J-

  4. #4

    Re: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garritan
    There is a great deal of discussion going on about a proposed Audio/MIDI standard - GMPI (ad hoc name for the Generalized Music Plug-In Interface) to replace the alphabet soup of audio standards (VST/DX/MIDI/AU etc).

    PS: If we get large enough of a discussion on this topic I will forward your comments to the GMPI Working Group
    actually... it makes me shiver! If the electronic instrument industry was just beginning, ok... but think of all the interfaces we'll need for the old synths to work with the new and wonderful GMPI. Think of competitive companies developing those adapters and inventing new standards along so they could bury the competition along the way ... Think of hardware prices actually going up so they could be retro-compatible ... don't tell me it WON'T happen!
    The pessimistic view could of course be influenced by my insomnia hit.. so bring up some other thoughts

  5. #5

    Re: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    forgot the only sensible thing I had to say... If you're gonna redefine musical interface standards, the first thing to do is crank up the controller resolution up into five figures. Death to the step-effect in filter sweeps!

  6. #6

    Re: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    Sounds exciting, but...

    EVERYTHING about it would have to be backwards-compatible, EVERYTHING! Creating a midi piece, a realistic midi piece, can take someone days, weeks, months... and to have all that work gone because the industry decided it wants to switch to make us all "upgrade" again, would be a shame.

    I personally know a composer who did a brilliant harp piece (no, it's not Gary) and to recreate the timing, he adjusted the tempo track on almost every note. And the piece was, if I remember correctly, just over 10 minutes long. Something like that, would have to be preserved.

    Also, what does that mean for instruments like GPO? A new Kontakt player for sure, but - would the programming remain? Would it accept our current GPO midi files, or would we have to reprogram everything.

    Maybe I'm not understanding what this new standard is? Is it just a new midi protocal? Or is it more of an integrated sequencer/instrument thing? You said it would replace MIDI and VST, so, I'm assuming it will have it's own sequencing features, or it wouldn't replace midi.

    If it does have its own sequencing features, how does Steinberg and Cakewalk feel about that? Sure their products are audio also, but I HUGE part of them are MIDI. Would we still need them?

    I guess I should do more research before I can intelligently comment here, but those are my early concerns/questions... more to follow, I'm sure, as I read acouple of links and the like.
    Alan Lastufka | www.BelaDMedia.com
    Producer/Artistic Design | Content Producer

    20 Things

  7. #7

    Re: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    I think the old plugin formats would never go away and we'd be left with just one more new one and even more confusion... I think AU's on the mac are a good thing. Apple is forcing everyone to use AU's and basically..its working.

    I think a cross platform plugin format would lead to a problem of quality. Have you ever seen any cross platform gui libraries for example? You generally get the least common denominator. On each platform individually, I like the idea of a standard. I personally like the fact that Apple has taken control of the situation with CoreAudio, CoreMidi and the AU format. The OS has it under their control and over time, all of the audio software will comply with the same dedication they comply with the OSX windowing system. VST and MAS plugins will, in all liklihood, cease to exist on the Mac platform eventually.

    Regarding features... I think all the obvious things are probably covered. Delay compenstation, midi control of all parameters, etc..

    Regarding midi 1.0 and something better. I don't think a plugin standard can fix the real problem. But I do think that if the midi spec already supports higher resolution in messages (more than 128 values for a CC or note velocity, for example), then I think the plugins should be written to recognize that extra information coming to it on a midi stream and comply. They should also continue to recognize "legacy" midi messages.

    The fact that midi is communicated over serial and slow midi cables is not an issue for plugins and software, but its definitely still an issue for anything that has to be performed on a midi keyboard or other midi input device. They can cross slow/serial barrier by coming up with alternative controllers which provide the data to the computer through something other than a midi cable. Perhaps firewire or something like that. But then either the midi spec needs to be improved to support more resolution in various kinds of messages, or else if that ability already exists in the midi spec, then the various softwares would need to directly support it. All old legacy hardware would need to continue working as is without any problems as well.

    I was not aware that the midi spec actually had specs for timestamps, if so, I wish it were adhered to over midi paths that can support the extra bandwidth. But I don't think it should be required. And really, I question whether "plugins" should ever worry about timestamps the way say a host application uses timestamps. Right now, CoreMidi is able to take timestamps issued in the hardware midi interface and through the CoreMidi subsystem the timestamp is included with the midi message so that Logic or DP can pay attention to that timestamp, and put the event in the track at exactly the right moment. and during playback, Logic and DP can let CoreMidi worry about making sure events playback exactly when they are supposed to.

    If you deferred the responsbility of honoring timestamps to plugins, then all of the various plugins would need to be syncronized. I think its easier and perfectly acceptable to let the host application be the thing honoring timestamps.

    That being said, I think it would be super cool if the midi spec does support timestamps, that timestamps could be sent WITH the midi message, not only within CoreMidi...but across the wire to other hardware devices which might support timestamps...even if the only thing out there to support is is another Mac or PC with a midi interface that knows how to turn that midi message timestamp into a CoreMidi timestamp, etc.. But all of that is, in my opinion, beyond the scope of what a plugin should be worrying about. A plugin runs within the confines of a host app and the host app would worry about "when".

    By the way, if we start having a lot of applications taking care of honoring timestamps...different hardware devices, different plugins, etc...everyone trying to honor timestamps on their own... we will introduce another issue..which is keeping them all in sync timewise....

    cheers
    "Music is a manifestation of the human spirit similar to a language. If we do not want such things to remain dead treasures, we must do our utmost to make the greatest number of people understand their secrets" -- Zoltan Kodaly

  8. #8

    Exclamation Re: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aziraphal
    forgot the only sensible thing I had to say... If you're gonna redefine musical interface standards, the first thing to do is crank up the controller resolution up into five figures. Death to the step-effect in filter sweeps!
    If the MIDI spec was used for both MSB and LSB, then you'd have a full 14-bit word that could accurately describe a smooth filter sweep covering the entire audio range (more than 16,000 steps). The trick is having the data throughput and the reasonable expectation that the system receiving the control to interpret the data.

    The spec allows for plenty of resolution - but it remains as to the implementation by companies in interfacing and response.
    Houston Haynes - Titan Line Music

  9. #9

    Re: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garritan
    The goal of GMPI is to converge all the audio/MIDI standards into one compatible cross-platform standard. A GMPI plugin that will work in one audio application would theoretically work in ALL audio applications.
    It's great to see that the efforts of GMPI group are starting to get some attention.

    I wanted to clarify one thing. GMPI is not attempting to merge MIDI itself into an umbrella standard. The objective is standardize the current "alphabet soup" of standards and get it under the ownership of a neutral trade association.

    Obviously MIDI intersects this effort, because of soft synths, etc. But we're are trending towards defining a control language that extends MIDI, but doesn't mean to be anything like a MIDI 2.0.

  10. #10
    Moderator/Developer Brian2112's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Out of my Mind
    Posts
    1,858

    Re: GMPI - A New Audio/MIDI Standard to Replace MIDI, VST, AU, etc.?

    I believe something like this has been tried before (if anyone remembers Opcode’s OMS). Personally, I don’t think that MIDI is broken. Yes, there are things that could be better, but it sure has held up well over time. The key is the implementation of MIDI.
    As to audio, I seem to recall that most of the real VST innovation came after the introduction of Dxi which perhaps influenced people to make VST better. So I think there is something to be said for not sticking to the limitations of one platform (as convenient as it might be to have a standard).

    2112
    "So what if some parts of life are a crap shoot? Get out there and shoot the crap." -- Neil Peart
    Hint:1.6180339887498948482 Φ

Go Back to forum

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •