Configuring your MIDI controller for best results with MainStage

MainStage allows you to use your MIDI controller to fluidly and expressively control your sound in live performance. Learn about setting up your hardware controller for best results.

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

MainStage is designed to respond to MIDI continuous controller messages from knobs and sliders on your hardware controller. These types of messages consist of a single MIDI event with a data value of 0-127. Some controllers send 2 MIDI events from some of their knobs or sliders. MainStage cannot be controlled by these 2-event messages. In many cases, such MIDI controllers can be configured to send single-event messages. If you find that MainStage does not respond to some of the knobs or sliders on your controller, check your hardware's documentation to see about reconfiguring your controller.

There are a few single-event message types that have special purposes, or cannot be used:

  • Program change messages can only be used to change patches within a concert. They cannot be used to control other functions.
  • Continuous controller messages 0 and 32 are reserved by the MIDI specification for multiple MIDI event messages to control bank select. MainStage 1.x does not support these messages. If a knob or fader on your hardware controller is sending either of these message types, reconfigure it to send a different type of continuous controller message for MainStage 1.x. MainStage 2 can use either CC0 or CC32 as single event controls.
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