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Author Topic: Motu Midi Express PC (1993)  (Read 3420 times)

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Online chrisNova777

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Motu Midi Express PC (1993)
« on: December 09, 2014, 06:41:56 PM »

designed for use with *486* computers running windows 3.11 and DOS
*yes the readme file explains 486 intel processor is a requirement!!*
**** REQUIRES A 8BIT or 16BIT ISA HOST CARD****
(usually not found for sale with the units)

if you do not have a host card similar to the one pictured here you do not have a functioning unit!!

(see above clearly labelled as "mark of the unicorn express pc mtp card")

http://contents.driverguide.com/content.php?id=67832&path=README.TXT
http://web.archive.org/web/19961018010309/http://motu.com/pages/MXP.html
http://web.archive.org/web/20151223075710/http://susia.tripod.com/midiexpresspc.pdf
http://web.archive.org/web/19961018010320/http://motu.com/pages/MXPCWindowsTable.html
https://web.archive.org/web/20150706023750/http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/1994_articles/mar94/motuexpress.html




i had thought that this particular interface requires an ISA adapter card to plug in but i have been informed by others on numerous occasion that it is able to interface with a parallel port.. but lets say thats unconfirmed info;) i think that info applies to the "Midi Express PC Notebook" later variation of this interface.. in which the interface was designed to be used with an early 1990s windows 3.1 laptop with rs232 serial port "on the go"

http://www.sweetwater.com/sweetcare/articles/motu-parallel-midi-interface-work-windows-xp-updated-1/
http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/1994_articles/mar94/motuexpress.html
http://web.archive.org/web/20050308155631/http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/1994_articles/mar94/motuexpress.html

Quote
CONCLUSION

When Mark of the Unicorn announced MIDI Time Piece II for the PC, I must admit I was quite excited, until I saw the price -- £749. Because the MIDI Express PC has been built solely for the PC, costs have remained low, yet no compromises have been made on quality. The hardware itself may not offer the same level of flexibility as the MTP II -- for example, there are no transpose features -- but much of this can be set up within your music application. However, it's not possible to have more than one MIDI Express PC within your setup allowing for more than six outputs (96 channels).

I see the release of the MIDI Express PC as another sign that manufacturers have finally begun to take the PC seriously as a music computer; I look forward to the release of more 'professional' PC-related equipment onto the market.

 

MIDI EXPRESS PC £379

PROS
• Six MIDI outputs offering 96 addressable channels.
• Good cable routing features.
• SMPTE/Jam indicators and Panic Button on the front panel.
• Serial port for direct connection to a Mac.
• Available in 'Notebook' form, connecting via serial port.
• The price.

CONS
• Only one unit can be used, giving a maximum of 96 MIDI channels.
• The software operation isn't always as obvious as it might be.
• Unable to send a setup in the form of a system exclusive message direct from a sequencer.

SUMMARY
An excellent and flexible piece of equipment that combines a multi-port MIDI interface, MIDI router and comprehensive sync unit in one affordable box.

 

info

£ MIDI Express PC £379; MIDI Express PC Notebook £379. Prices inc VAT.


Quote
-------------------------------------------------
           Mark of the Unicorn MIDI Express PC Release Notes
           -------------------------------------------------

Hello and thanks for choosing Mark of the Unicorn!  Please take time to
read the following information before proceeding.


System Requirements
-------------------

To use the MIDI Express PC MIDI interface, your system must meet the
following requirements.

Computer      

   Intel 486 (or equivalent) processor or better is highly
   recommended
   One available 8- or 16-bit ISA expansion card slot (depending on
   your MIDI interface hardware)

Operating system   

   Windows 95, Windows for Workgroups or Windows 3.1

The MIDI applications you intend to use with your interface may have
additional hardware and software requirements.  For more information,
consult the documentation that came with the application software.


Determining Which Driver To Use For Your Hardware
-------------------------------------------------



There have been two different types of ISA expansion cards from Mark of
the Unicorn for use with its MIDI Express PC MIDI interface.  To
determine which card you have, compare your card to the information in
the following table. 

Card Type      Coloring   Distinguishing Markings
----------------------  -------------   ------------------------------

Original 8-bit MIDI    yellow/green    No "MPU401" near DIP switch
Express and MIDI   or
Time Piece combination   orange/black   
card

16-bit MIDI Express PC   orange/black   "MPU401" near DIP switch
and MIDI Time Piece          
combination card      

If you have the original 8-bit card, you should use the driver named
"MIDI Express PC (8-bit card)".  If you have the 16-bit card, you should
use the driver named "MIDI Express PC (16-bit card)".  For more
information on driver installation, proceed to the following sections.


Preparing for Installation
--------------------------

Before proceeding, make sure the interface expansion card is properly
installed in your computer and that it is connected to the MIDI
interface via the included cable.  The cable should be connected between
the port on the card and the port on the interface labeled COMPUTER. 
Make sure each end of the cable is securely attached.  For more
information on installing and connecting the interface hardware, refer
to your MIDI Express PC documentation.

With everything properly connected, you are ready to install the driver
software.  Be aware that the driver installation procedure is slightly
different depending on your version of Windows.  Please follow the
directions in the appropriate section below.  For additional help with
driver installation in general, consult your Windows documentation.


Driver Installation for Windows 95 Users
----------------------------------------

1) If you currently have a previous version of the driver installed,
close any MIDI applications that might be using it.

2) Open Control Panel (by choosing Settings|Control Panel from the Start
menu), double-click the "Add New Hardware" icon and click Next.

3) When the Add New Hardware Wizard asks if you want it to scan for new
hardware, click No (clicking Yes won't work---the Wizard does not know
how to automatically recognize your Mark of the Unicorn MIDI interface
hardware).

4) Select "Sound, video and game controllers" and click Next.

5) When the Wizard asks for the manufacturer and model of your new
hardware, click the special Have Disk... button.  Make sure your MIDI
Express PC setup disk 1 has been inserted into your computer, enter
the appropriate drive to scan and click OK.

NOTE: If you are installing from a location on your hard disk (because
you downloaded the setup files to your hard disk or uncompressed them
from a .ZIP file, etc.), you must enter the appropriate drive and folder
to scan when using the Have Disk... button.  In this case, you won't
need a diskette, just the files on your hard disk.

6) After the Wizard has scanned, it should present you with two hardware
choices for the 8- and 16-bit MIDI Express PC cards (see the
"Determining Which Driver To Use For Your Hardware" section above to
determine which driver you should choose).  Click the appropriate choice
for your hardware and then click OK.

7) Click Finish to have the Wizard install the driver software onto your
computer after which the newly installed driver setup dialog should
appear. 

NOTE: If an older version of the driver was already installed, the setup
dialog will still reflect that version.  The setup dialog will display
the new version after Windows has been restarted.

Use the dialog to configure your MIDI interface (see the section "Driver
Setup Dialog Overview" below for more information).  When you are
finished, click OK.

8) Finally, the Wizard should inform you that Windows must be restarted
before you can use your new hardware.  Make sure your MIDI interface is
properly connected.  Then, restart Windows and test that it is working
correctly with all your MIDI applications.

NOTE: Should you ever need to reconfigure the driver settings for your
MIDI interface, open Control Panel, double-click the "Multimedia" icon
and click the Advanced tab.  In the list of multimedia devices, click
the + sign next to the "MIDI Devices and Instruments" entry.  This will
expand the entry to show sub-entries for all your installed MIDI
devices.  Double-click any sub-entry that appears to be for your Mark of
the Unicorn MIDI interface (more than one may appear) and then click
Settings....  Windows will display the driver setup dialog again.


Driver Installation for Windows for Workgroups and Windows 3.1 Users
--------------------------------------------------------------------

1) If you currently have a previous version of the driver installed,
close any MIDI applications that might be using it.

2) Open Control Panel (by double-clicking its icon in Program Manager's
Main group) and then double-click the "Drivers" icon.

NOTE: Windows will not let you add a new driver version until you remove
the old one.  If a previous version of the driver is currently
installed, select it and click Remove.  After it has been removed,
restart Windows, repeat this step and continue on to step 3. 

3) Click Add and select "Unlisted or Updated Driver" and click OK.

4) Make sure your MIDI Express PC setup disk 1 has been inserted into
your computer, enter the appropriate drive to scan and click OK.

NOTE: If you are installing from a location on your hard disk (because
you downloaded the setup files to your hard disk or uncompressed them
from a .ZIP file, etc.), you must enter the appropriate drive and folder
to scan.  In this case, you won't need a diskette, just the files on
your hard disk.

5) After the files have been scanned, you should be presented with two
driver choices for the 8- and 16-bit MIDI Express PC cards (see the
"Determining Which Driver To Use For Your Hardware" section above to
determine which driver you should choose).  Click the appropriate driver
for your hardware and then click OK to install the driver onto your
computer.

6) At this point, the newly installed MIDI interface driver setup dialog
should appear. 

NOTE: If the setup dialog does not appear and Windows instead asks if
you want the "new" or "current" version of the driver, click New.  The
setup dialog should then appear.

Use the dialog to configure your MIDI interface (see the section "Driver
Setup Dialog Overview" below for more information).  When you are
finished, click OK.

7) Finally, Control Panel should inform you that Windows must be
restarted before you can use the new driver.  Make sure your MIDI
interface is properly connected.  Then, restart Windows and test that it
is working correctly with all your MIDI applications.

NOTE: Should you ever need to reconfigure the driver settings for your
MIDI interface, open Control Panel, double-click the "Drivers" icon,
click the entry for your Mark of the Unicorn MIDI interface and then
click Setup....


Using The MIDI Express PC from DOS (16-bit card only)
-----------------------------------------------------

You can use your MIDI Express PC 16-bit card as an MPU-401-compatible
interface for use with DOS programs that work with the MPU-401.  This
mode works under DOS only and will not work in an MS-DOS prompt running
under Windows.  Again, this mode is possible only with the 16-bit card
(see the chart above to determine if you have the 16-bit card).

NOTE: You must first exit Windows before using the MIDI Express PC in
MPU-401 mode!  If you are using Windows 95, you must choose "Restart
the computer in MS-DOS mode" from the Start|Shutdown menu.

To put the Express PC into MPU-401 mode, run the MPUSETUP.EXE program
found in the C:\WINMXP\DOS directory created during the Windows
installation procedure.

To do this:

1) Exit Windows.

2) Change the current directory to C:\WINMXP\DOS (WINMXP is the default
root directory of your MIDI Express PC installation) by entering the
command line...

   CD C:\WINMXP\DOS

3) Run the MPUSETUP.EXE program by entering the command line...

   MPUSETUP

4) A "usage" listing will appear with information on the two arguments
you can use for this program.  You must specify the current port address
of the MIDI Express PC card and the IRQ you want the card to use with
your DOS MIDI software.  It is best to set this to the same IRQ as you
used for the Windows driver. For example, if the card has been set to
port address 340 and you want it to use IRQ 5, the command line would
be...

   MPUSETUP 340 5

5) Run MPUSETUP with the correct arguments to make your MIDI Express PC
function as an MPU-401-compatible interface.  This should make it work
with other DOS MIDI software.  If needed, be sure to tell the DOS
program what IRQ and port address your MIDI Express PC (in MPU-401 mode)
is using.  If your DOS program does not allow such a setting, it may
simply expect the port address to be 330 (the standard MPU-401 address). 
See your DOS MIDI application's manual for more information.

6) If you will often be using your MIDI Express PC in MPU-401 mode
before starting Windows, you may want to edit your AUTOEXEC.BAT file to
include the command line needed to run the MPUSETUP.EXE program (see
steps 3 and 4 above).  It will most likely be best to include this
command line at the end of the file.

NOTE: Before running Windows again, you should disable MPU-401 mode.

Run the MPUSETUP program with only the port address argument to disable
MPU-401 mode before starting Windows again:
 
   MPUSETUP 340

NOTE: Along the lines of the above AUTOEXEC.BAT suggestion, if you often
use MPU-401 in DOS mode and also use Windows 3.1, you might create a
batch  file that executes the above command line before starting Windows
and then reenables MPU-401 mode after Windows has exited.  This way, you
won't forget to do it in either case.  The .BAT file might look like
this:

   MPUSETUP 340
   WIN
   MPUSETUP 340 5


Setting Up The MIDI Time Piece Console for DOS Only
---------------------------------------------------

NOTE: This section is intended for DOS-only users.  The MIDI Express
PC Windows setup process will install these files for you.  Follow
these instructions ONLY if you DO NOT run the Windows setup.

To install the MIDI Time Piece Console for DOS, place the installation
diskette #2 into drive A (substitute drive "B" for "A" if it is the
installation "source" drive on your computer) and change the current
drive at the DOS prompt to drive A by entering the following command
line...

   A:                     

To start the installation, enter...

   DOSSETUP <path>

...where <path> is the location on your hard disk to place the DOS
software.

For example, to place the DOS software in the directory C:\MTPDOS, you
would enter the command

   DOSSETUP C:\MTPDOS

This installs the files MTP104M.EXE, MPUSETUP.EXE, EXAMPLE.MTP and
WINDOWS.MTP.  MTP104M.EXE is the MIDI Time Piece Console for DOS Console
application.  MPUSETUP.EXE is the setup program for the MPU-401 mode of
the MIDI Express PC  (see the section below for information on using
this program).  EXAMPLE.MTP is an example setup for the MTP which can be
loaded into your MIDI Express PC via the DOS console application. 
WINDOWS.MTP is a suggested default setup for operating the MIDI Express
PC with Twelve Tone Systems Cakewalk software.  The MIDI Time Piece
Console for DOS software allows limited access to the functionality of
the MIDI Express PC.  The MIDI Express PC destroys any previous
configuration information at system startup.  DOS users will need to
download configuration information to the MIDI Express PC after every
reboot.  Windows users have their last configuration information
automatically loaded when Windows starts.


Additional Tips for Windows Users
---------------------------------

1) Configuration information is contained in an initialization file. 
This file is initially called MOTU.INI, and is located in the Windows     
directory.  This initialization file contains information about the type     
of device, and MIDI bytes needed to restore the configuration of the
MIDI Express PC.

2) There is a mini-DIN-8 connector located on the MIDI Express PC/MPU
adapter card.  This can be used as a serial port connection (RS-422) to
a Macintosh computer, which will appear as port "B".

2) Some video card screen resolutions cause problems with the MIDI
Express PC Console software.  If windows appear strange looking or cut
off at the bottom, try a different screen resolution.

Quote
PC users get a look in on the sophisticated MIDI add-on market with a multi-port, sync-generating unit from Mark of the Unicorn. STEVEN HELSTRIP catches the MIDI Express.

 

Over the last two to three years there has been an explosion in confidence, from manufacturers and musicians alike, about Windows and the 'MIDI PC'. Whilst Cubase, Cakewalk, and Cadenza have headed software sales throughout Europe, the market for MIDI interfaces has been dominated by the likes of Music Quest, Voyetra and the now discontinued CMS range. When compared with equivalent offerings for the Mac, however, PC interfaces appear somewhat outdated, and limited by their number of ports and their lack of MIDI data routing capabilities.

As sequencer technology marches forward, the need for a better, more flexible interface becomes apparent. To fill this gap in the market, Mark of the Unicorn (MOTU), a name synonymous with 'Macintosh' among musicians, has ventured into the PC market with MIDI Express PC -- a 1U, 19-inch rackmount unit with six MIDI inputs, six MIDI outputs, SMPTE, and extensive software support for cable routing and MIDI patching.

EXPRESS SERVICE

The heart of the MIDI Express is a half-length, 8-bit AT card which houses the brains for the interface.

On the rear of the card is a connector for the rackmount unit and a serial port for direct connection to a Mac, should you have one. Supplied with the unit came a generous 7-foot cable connector, MIDI Express Console for Windows, and drivers for DOS. Installation proved to be a simple task -- in fact, it was more difficult removing the unit from its packaging, simply because I didn't have a pair of scissors to hand to cut it free from the security band! All told, MIDI Express was up and running within about 10 minutes of getting it home.

On the face of the now-rackmounted unit, 12 LEDs monitor MIDI activity from each of the six MIDI Ins and Outs, and additional LEDs indicate SMPTE operation and Jam sync. Happily the unit's power is supplied directly from the PC, eliminating the need to find yet another power socket in the studio. As with MOTU's MIDI Time Piece (MTP), MIDI input 6 and MIDI output 6 have been duplicated on the front panel for convenience, useful for temporarily adding equipment to your MIDI rig. The panic button (All Notes Off) on the right of the front panel is there to put an end to those irritating hanging notes -- it works by sending Note Off commands to each and every note on every channel for all six ports; this procedure can also be initiated from within the included software.

As you'd expect, the MIDI ports are positioned at the rear of the rack unit, as are three quarter-inch phono jacks for SMPTE in/out and a programmable footswitch input. From within the software, the footswitch can be assigned to send MIDI messages to any instrument in your setup, the idea being that you can use the unit in a live situation to set up your instruments by assigning the pedal to trigger program change messages, and/or send a start command to your sequencer. The footswitch port also doubles up as an audio to MIDI trigger input; connect an audio source here and you can trigger drum samples or create tempo maps for your sequencer from a live click track.

The diminutive appearance of the MIDI Express belies the power within it. Compared with MOTU's own MIDI Time Piece II, this thing is tiny. The fundamental difference between the two is that all of the Express' functions are initiated from within its software and much of the processing comes from the card; with the MTP II, much of the necessary setting up is executed from the front panel.

MIDI EXPRESS CONSOLE

Upon installing the Express Console (the software control centre), you're met with the configuration window -- a user-friendly diagram to display I/O address. Should there be any IRQ conflict, the software prompts you to change hardware settings -- re-configuring DIP switches on the card and then making the necessary changes to the Windows MME driver.

The Express Console is all about working with setups. In simple terms, a setup describes how the MIDI express should handle all incoming and outgoing data. This includes re-channelling, routing to any of six outputs, MIDI muting (filtering) and sync settings. The default setup is for use with software capable of addressing all six outputs (Cubase, MaxPak, for example); all inputs in this case are routed directly to the computer. Other presets include a setup for live playing where each of the inputs are routed to all outputs (excluding the source, to prevent MIDI loops), and 'Seq16' -- a setup for use with notation packages which can often only address a single port (16 channels). Setups can be saved to disk to recall at a later stage. Incidentally, the unit which I reviewed was not MPU-401 hardware compatible, but Sound Technology assured me that by the time you read this, compatibility will have been implemented.

Creating your own setup is done with the help of various edit windows within the package. The cable routing window is probably the easiest of all to get to grips with; inputs are named down the left of the window, and outputs down the right. When you select PC and/or Mac (port B) to be incorporated within your setup, icons appear to the centre of the screen to represent whichever is chosen. You connect devices to each another by drawing lines between them, which the software thoughtfully tidies up. Double clicking on any line calls up a dialogue box where you can specify which channel is to be routed; the default setting is all channels routed.

In the Event Muting window, any type of MIDI data can be filtered out on any channel or from any port when either going into or coming out of the MIDI Express. The input filter mutes selected events before they enter the MIDI Express, and the output filter swallows up events just before they are transmitted. Data types are separated into two categories: Channelised Events, and System Messages -- which include active sensing, song select and tune request. By first selecting the event type to be filtered, you can then select any of the 64 check-boxes on a grid which represents all input/output channels. All channels are selected when a system message is muted.

SMPTE time code can be generated in all formats from the SMPTE Controls window at eight user-selectable output levels. The Express will 'freewheel' when SMPTE source code disappears and will write fresh code when locked to an incoming signal (Jam Sync). This function is handy for extending existing time code on tape by locking a time code generator to the existing code. If you have a Mac connected to port B, it can be 'slaved' to the MIDI Time Code (MTC) generated by the MIDI Express. When the PC locks to time code, the green light on the front panel glows steadily while the red Power/Tach light flashes regularly each second. No other interface I know of offers anything like this amount of flexibility at this price.

CONCLUSION

When Mark of the Unicorn announced MIDI Time Piece II for the PC, I must admit I was quite excited, until I saw the price -- £749. Because the MIDI Express PC has been built solely for the PC, costs have remained low, yet no compromises have been made on quality. The hardware itself may not offer the same level of flexibility as the MTP II -- for example, there are no transpose features -- but much of this can be set up within your music application. However, it's not possible to have more than one MIDI Express PC within your setup allowing for more than six outputs (96 channels).

I see the release of the MIDI Express PC as another sign that manufacturers have finally begun to take the PC seriously as a music computer; I look forward to the release of more 'professional' PC-related equipment onto the market.

 

MIDI EXPRESS PC £379

PROS
• Six MIDI outputs offering 96 addressable channels.
• Good cable routing features.
• SMPTE/Jam indicators and Panic Button on the front panel.
• Serial port for direct connection to a Mac.
• Available in 'Notebook' form, connecting via serial port.
• The price.

CONS
• Only one unit can be used, giving a maximum of 96 MIDI channels.
• The software operation isn't always as obvious as it might be.
• Unable to send a setup in the form of a system exclusive message direct from a sequencer.

SUMMARY
An excellent and flexible piece of equipment that combines a multi-port MIDI interface, MIDI router and comprehensive sync unit in one affordable box.

 

info

£ MIDI Express PC £379; MIDI Express PC Notebook £379. Prices inc VAT.

A Sound Technology plc, Letchworth Point, Letchworth, Hertfordshire, SG6 1ND.

T 0462 480000.

F 0462 480800.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2018, 03:09:14 AM by chrisNova777 »

Online chrisNova777

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Re: Motu Midi Express PC (1994?)
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2017, 02:19:55 PM »
finally found some photos of the isa card !
i was trying to find one like this to try to have it cloned + made available for so many who have the motu midi express box but not the card to use it in a vintage pc properly...
but unfortunately the person who had this card is selling for an extremely high price because of its rarity rather than trying to help the cause for community many people choose personal gain over personal sacrifice for communal gain.. but we keep trying and wait for someone who has sense of morals + purpose above just himself

Online chrisNova777

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  • Posts: 6392
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  • Gender: Male
  • "Vintage MIDI Sequencing + Audio Production"
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