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Posted: 12-05-21 11:45 am
by psscin01
Hi Everyone,

I am a teacher and I am trying to implement the Piano Led project made by onlaj for my students to both complete and use. Ideally, I would like to make this a project done by our 9-12 grade STEAM students for our Fine Arts students to use with Synthesia. I have attempted to make this prototype myself, but I have had many issues with the ports, connections, and consistency. I am somewhat familiar with MIDI setups and I have some experience with computer music, but this has been a bit much for me. The prototype I made used a P70s Yamaha keyboard (has a Midi in/out) with a Pi zero wh and an iPad/Macbook Air using OS 11.3.1 and Synthesia 10.8.

My problem is this: although I was able to establish connections via bluetooth and rtpmidi, they were often dropped and/or the keys lights failed to respond or show the next-to-play keys. i am not sure if this is a settings issue, but I think the best solution would to hardwire everything together via USB OTG hub. However, I can't seem to find a way to keep the tablet charged this way. Since this would be installed in a piano lab with children, I would probably need to keep them on all the time.

So far, I can't seem to find a reasonable way to connect the pi and tablet with a usb hub. I know there is the Sevilla Soft USB USB MIDI interface, but I don't know if there would be enough units available for the number I would need (at least 8). I can also feasibly use Synthesia on monitors with macbook airs and mount those to the keyboard, but I still would have a problem with connections and hubs since most of the available computers at school only use USB-C ports. Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

Additionally, I am quite confused by the way the port settings on the LED visualizer and Synthesia correspond. I followed the automatic MIDI connection on the Neuma site and still have a lot of issues with assigning the ports. Any guidance on this would be greatly appreciated. Also, if any one knows how to get in direct contact with the creator of Synthesia, I would love to hear their thoughts on how to implement multiple stations in a classroom setting. Please let me know if you need me to provide any other additional information. Thanks!

Posted: 12-16-21 10:10 am
by Nicholas
I'm very sorry for the wait on this!

I don't have much experience with onlaj's Piano LED project, so the couple of issues it looks like you've already filed on the Piano-LED-Visualizer issues page seem like the best place to ask those kinds of questions.

It's curious that you're seeing flaky Bluetooth connections to the iPad. Across all of our platforms, iPad has always seemed to have the most consistent/reliable Bluetooth capabilities. (The opposite end of the spectrum: Android Bluetooth is a broken mess.)

Otherwise, which sort of questions did you have about multiple stations in a classroom setting? We have a utility that can help replicate your settings across machines (relatively) easily. Does this classroom guide help answer any of them?