Audio MIDI Setup: How to test for MIDI function

The Audio MIDI Setup application (located in your Utilities folder) is a very useful tool for troubleshooting signal flow in your MIDI setup. Here's how to use it to test for MIDI functionality in your system:

  1. Open the Audio MIDI Setup application.
  2. Click the MIDI Devices tab.
  3. Click the Test Setup button—the button turns blue and the cursor turns into a pair of musical notes. With Test Setup engaged, you can test your MIDI setup's output ports and attached MIDI controllers. 
  4. To test a MIDI interface's MIDI Out port, click the output port (the upside down triangle) on its corresponding icon in the Audio MIDI Setup configuration window. The output port icon turns red, and AMS sends MIDI data to the device's physical MIDI port.

  5. If your MIDI interface display offers status lights that indicate data is being transmitted, then the light on your interface for the port you clicked in AMS should illuminate. If an external MIDI device patched to the respective MIDI port is properly connected to your amplification system, it should also output sound.
  6. If you have other external MIDI devices in your Audio MIDI Setup configuration, you can test them by clicking on the appropriate icon in the Audio MIDI Setup window. The connected MIDI interface icon's Out port will turn red in AMS and data will be sent, just as it would when clicking directly on the port as described above.

  7. With the Test Setup button engaged, you can also test MIDI input. Simply play a controller that's attached to your interface, and the corresponding MIDI In port icon (the triangle) in the Audio MIDI Setup configuration window will turn red.

If your MIDI interface does not respond when you run any of these tests, make sure that you have a driver installed for it that is compatible with the version of OS X that you are using. Refer to the MIDI interface manufacturer's web site for information that pertains to your device.

If the status lights on your MIDI interface light while testing, but your connected MIDI modules do not make sound, then make sure that the MIDI cables are connected properly (MIDI Out from the interface to MIDI In on the module), and that your MIDI cables are working properly. Next, make sure that the audio output(s) from your modules are connected properly to a mixer or other suitable amplification system. If your module offers a headphone jack, try listening with headphones to see if there is sound.

When you are finished testing, click the Test Setup button again. It will turn white, indicating AMS is no longer in Test Mode.

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