Sync multiple MIDI devices to Logic Pro X

In Logic Pro 10.4.5, independently configure MIDI clock settings for up to 16 external MIDI devices.

With the MIDI sync settings in Logic, you can send MIDI synchronization to external devices so that Logic Pro acts as the master synchronization device in your studio. You can send MIDI clock, MIDI Timecode (MTC), and MIDI Machine Control (MMC) to each device independently. You can also turn on plug-in delay compensation for each device, and delay the MIDI clock signal to each device.

Open MIDI sync settings

MIDI synchronization settings are saved with each project. To open MIDI synchronization settings, open your project, then choose File > Project Settings > Synchronization, then click the MIDI tab.

Sync with MIDI Clock

To sync multiple external MIDI devices like synthesizers and dedicated sequencers to Logic, use MIDI clock. When using MIDI clock, you can correct for any timing discrepancies between devices by adjusting MIDI clock delay for each MIDI device that you’ve added as a destination. 

  1. Open MIDI sync settings.
  2. To add a MIDI device to sync to Logic, click a pop-up menu in the Destination column, then choose a device or port. If a device doesn’t appear, make sure you’ve connected it to your Mac properly.
  3. Select the Clock checkbox for the device.
  4. To adjust MIDI clock delay for the device, drag a value in the "Delay [ms]" field. A negative value means that MIDI clock signal is transmitted earlier. A positive value means that MIDI clock signal is transmitted later.
  5. If your project uses plug-ins, select the PDC checkbox for the device to turn on automatic plug-in delay compensation.
  6. Add other MIDI devices, set each device’s MIDI clock delay, PDC, and other options.

Set the MIDI clock mode and start location

After you add destinations and set options, set the MIDI clock mode for your project. The MIDI clock mode determines how and when Logic sends MIDI clock to your destinations. Choose a mode from the Clock Mode pop-up menu that works best for your workflow and the MIDI devices you’re using: 

  • "Pattern" mode sends a Start command to an external device like a sequencer to start playback of a pattern on the device. Make sure to enter the number of bars in the pattern in the "Clock Start: with a pattern length of <number of bars> Bar(s)" field, under the MIDI Clock mode pop-up.
  • "Song - SPP at Play Start and Stop/SPP/Continue at Cycle Jump" mode sends a start command to an external device when you start playback from the beginning of your Logic song. If you don't start playback from the beginning, a Song Position Pointer (SPP) command and then a Continue command are sent to start playback on the external device.
  • "Song - SPP at Play Start and Cycle Jump" mode sends an SPP command when you start playback and every time Cycle mode repeats.
  • "Song - SPP at Play Start only" mode sends an SPP command only when you begin initial playback.

After you set the MIDI Clock mode, you can choose where in your Logic song you want MIDI clock output to start. Choose the location (in bars, beats, div, and tics) in the "Clock Start: at position" field, under the Clock Mode pop-up.

Sync with MTC

When you need to sync Logic to video or to another digital audio workstations like Pro Tools, use MTC. You can also send MTC from Logic to separate destinations. Set the destination, select the MTC checkbox for the destination, then open MIDI sync preferences and make your adjustments.

Use MMC with Logic

Use MMC to control the transport of an external MMC-capable tape machine such as an ADAT. In this setup, Logic is typically set to send MMC to the external device, while simultaneously syncing to MTC timecode from the external device.

If you want to use the external master’s transport controls, you don’t need to use MMC. Set Logic to sync to the external device using MTC. You can also use MMC to record-enable tracks on the MMC slave device.

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