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Korg pa 500 User Manual: Standard Midi Files; The General Midi Standard; The Global Channel; The Chord 1 And Chord 2 Channels

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Standard MIDI Files

Midifiles, or Standard MIDI Files (a.k.a. SMF), are a practical
way of exchanging songs between different instruments and
computers. Pa500 uses the SMF format as its default song for-
mat, so reading a song from a computer, or saving a song that a
computer software can read, is not a problem at all.
The Pa500 sequencers are compatible with the SMF in format 0
(all data in one track; it is the most common format) and 1
(multitrack). It can read the SMF in Song Play mode and mod-
ify/save them in Sequencer mode. It can save a song in SMF 0
format in the Sequencer mode.
When in Song Play mode, the Pa500 can also display SMF lyrics
in Solton, M-Live (Midisoft), Tune1000, Edirol, GMX, HitBit,
and XF formats, and the chord abbreviations of SMF in Solton,
M-live (Midisoft), GMX, and XF format.
Note: The above trademarks are the property of their respective
holders. No endorsement is intended by inclusion in this list.
Standard MIDI Files usually have the ".MID" or ".KAR" filename

The General MIDI standard

Some years ago, the musical instruments world felt a need for
some further standardization. Then, the General MIDI Standard
(GM) was born. This extension of the basic MIDI sets new rules
for compatibility between instruments:
A minimum of 16 MIDI channels was required.
A basic set of 128 Sounds, correctly ordered, was manda-
The Drum Kit had a standard order.
Channel 10 had to be devoted to the Drum Kit.
A most recent extension is the GM2, that further expands the
Sounds database. The Pa500 is soundwise-compatible with the
GM2 standard.

The Global channel

Any channels with the Global option assigned (see "MIDI: MIDI
In Channels" on page 209) can simulate the Pa500 integrated
keyboard. When the Pa500 is connected to a master keyboard,
transmission should take place over the Global channel of the
The MIDI messages received over a Global channel and not over
a standard channel are affected by the SPLIT button, as well
from the split point. Therefore, if the SPLIT button LED is lit up,
the notes that arrive to the Pa500 over this channel will be
divided by the split point into the Upper (above the split point)
and Lower (below the split point) parts.
The notes that arrive to a Global channel are used for the chord
recognition of the automatic accompaniment. If the SPLIT LED
is turned on, only the notes below the split point will be used.
These notes will be combined with the ones of the special Chord
1 and Chord 2 channels.

The Chord 1 and Chord 2 channels

You can set two special Chord channels (see page 209) to send to
the Pa500 notes for the chord recognition. The notes will be
combined with the notes that go through the channel set as Glo-
bal (Global notes are recognized only under the split point, if the
SPLIT LED is lit up).
The Chord channels are not affected by the split point and the
status of the SPLIT button of the control panel. All the notes –
both above and below the split point – will be sent to the chord
The SPLIT button has a particular effect on the Chord channels:
if the SPLIT LED is on, the chord recognition mode will be
set by the "Chord Recognition Mode" parameter in the
Style Play mode (see page 99);
if the SPLIT LED is off, the chord recognition mode will
always be Fingered 3 (you need to play at least three notes
in order for the chord to be detected). If Expert was
selected before turning the SPLIT off, it will remain
These two channels are especially useful for accordion players to
assign a different Chord channel to the chords and the bass
played with the left hand. In this way, chords and bass will par-
ticipate to the creation of chords for the chord recognition of the
automatic accompaniment.

The Control channel

You can set a MIDI IN channel as the Control channel (see
page 209), to select Styles and Performance from an external
device. See the Appendix for a list of messages corresponding to
Pa500 internal data.

MIDI Setup

You can play Pa500 with an external controller, and use it simply
as a powerful sound generator. To help you configure the MIDI
channels, we have provided a set of MIDI Setups (see "Midi
Setup" on page 100 for the Style Play mode, "Midi Setup" on
page 162 for the Song Play mode, and "MIDI Setup" on page 207
for the Global mode).
We recommend you to consider each MIDI Setup as a starting
point you can freely tweak. Once you have selected the most
appropriate MIDI Setup for the connection to be made, you can
modify the parameters as necessary and save them in a MIDI
Setup (see "Write Global - Midi Setup dialog box" on page 212).
Standard MIDI Files


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