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Old 03-03-2018, 11:37 PM   #1
the3dge
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Default Test results: PreSonus FaderPort 8 (fw v1.01 & 2.01 modes) & Reaper v5.76

I picked up the Presonus FaderPort 8 today. Running Reaper v5.76/x64 under Win10, fully patched.

Just to see what would happen, I downloaded the drivers and plugged it in out of the box, no firmware update. Stock firmware on this was 1.01, v10899M build date Nov 24, 2016.

Had to dink with the controller to put it into MCU mode, as the "Presonus Faderport" control surface type in Reaper /did not/ work for me, and it came in "Studio One" mode by default. Faderport protocol options under v1.01 are:
STUDIO ONE
MCU
HUI

Putting the FaderPort in MCU mode and selecting the "Mackie Control Universal (Dev 9.7)" in Reaper worked.


Once I tested it (results below), i ran the firmware updater bringing it to 2.01, rev 13123, build date nov 16, 2017. Firmware updater worked easily, and factory reset took me back to v1.01. Have done this reliably several times.

On v2.01 when in the mode-select option (holding down "Select" on tracks1&2 as you power it up) there are several options:
Studio One
MCU (Logic)
MCU (Cubase)
MCU (Sonar)
HUI

I wasn't sure which option to use, so I did some research. Found someone who submitted a ticket because they weren't sure which option to use with Ableton Live (https://forums.presonus.com/viewtopi...aa849854d8925d). PreSonus took a while to get back to them but said to use MCU for Logic. The manual lists some other DAW's and options, but does not include Reaper (https://pae-web.presonusmusic.com/do...N_07022018.pdf section 9.1)

Here's what I've tested. Note I'm only looking at the basic workflow stuff, not any custom macros etc. MCU mode worked best for me. The other protocols were either unresponsive, or garbled text on the display and features/functions didn't work.

**********************************
Faderport Set As: MCU (Firmware v1.01, build rev 10899M, nov24 2016)
Reaper set to: "Mackie Control Universal"

- Faders read/record correct
- Automation read/write works with tracks selected
- Shift+Save button works
- channel mode scrolls the the tracks through one by one (1-8, 2-9, 3-10...)
- zoom mode works
- scroll button has two modes: fine and wide, indicated by whether the scroll button is blinking or steady.
- Bank mode scrolls the tracks through 8 by 8 (1-8, 9-16, etc)
- solo/mute clear works but only on tracks in the bank - not the whole reaper track list
- undo works
- master mode uses knob to master fader
- Transport/record controls
- Arm & select functions
- Marker button & mode (note that if you press it while somewhere there isn't a marker, it will place one. and if you go out of marker mode somewhere there isn't a marker, it will place one - even by pressing another button.)


**********************************
Faderport Set As: MCU (Logic) (firmware 2.01, build rev 13123, nov16 2017)
Reaper set as: Mackie Control Universal

track "Select" lights are green, were blue.

track button has two modes
mode 1: (bypass light off) faders controls track volume, pan controls track pan, of any selected
mode 2: (bypass light on) pan controls the track volume, faders control pan

solo/mute clear ONLY adjusts solo/mute on track 1 - won't set any other tracks
read/write automation works
scroll works in wide mode, in narrow mode only first move is performed, does nothing until mode change.
channel mode
click on/off
marker works
bank mode
master mode uses knob for master fader

zoom does NOT work

***********************************

Faderport Set As: MCU (Cubase) (firmware 2.01, build rev 13123, nov16 2017)
Reaper set as: Mackie Control Universal

faders read/record correct
read mode/write mode works
transport and loop controls
record button
scroll works in only 1 mode
bank works
channel works, but is backwards scrolling
mute clear & solo clear works (only tracks in bank)
master works
track selects & arm work
track mode (pan/levels)

left shift does NOT work
zoom does NOT work
click does NOT work

***********************************

Faderport Set As: MCU (Sonar) (firmware 2.01, build rev 13123, nov16 2017)
Reaper set as: Mackie Control Universal


levels and faders work
play/pause/stop/record
solo clear/mute clear work as expected
next/prev scroll up and down in the track pane (haven't seen that one yet)
bank adjusts bank as expected (1-8. 9-16.)
markers work


channel select does NOT work (1-8, 2-9, etc)
zoom does NOT work
scroll works, single mode only
click does NOT work
LOOP button turns metronome on/off

Audio and VI buttons seem to be undo/redo, but not 100% sure.

(stopped testing given the click/loop buttons)



***********************************


What does NOT seem to work in any mode or firmware version:
'Edit Plugins'
'Sends'
'Pan' button (tho pan is set thru "Pan/Param" knob or faders, depending on "track mode")
'Audio/Inputs' button
'VI/MIDI' button
'Bus/Outputs' button
'VCA/FX' button
'All/User' button
'Macro/Open' button
'Link/Lock' button

They may be configurable or customizable, I just haven't dug in that deep yet.

The Bypass button light is a visual indicator in firmware v2.01, telling you which track mode you're in. Is not the case in v1.01. (A shame, as that's useful.)

The solo/mute clear functionality was a dealbreaker for me, so I reverted back to the factory firmware, v1.01. Plus I like the blue track select lights better.

There's a difference between v1.01 and v2.01 in the pan and levels indicators on the display. Solid bars in v1.01, empty bars in v2.01. Minor but notable.

In testing it I can occasionally get it to do something weird - the displays get stuck or the scroll function doesn't work. Usually going to Options and picking the control surface and hitting edit, then hitting ok will reinitialize it (no changes necessary, just open the device config and hit OK again. You'll see the faders snap back to attention.)

In the 2 hours or so I've played with it, yeah - totally worth it. Not 100% functional, but does 95% of what I care about. Looks sharp, feels solid, I could get talked into the 16ch version.

Cheers.
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Old 03-04-2018, 02:29 AM   #2
Geoff Waddington
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Check the thread in my sig below, if you are into extreme customization.
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Old 03-04-2018, 02:38 AM   #3
azslow3
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Since it seems like you take systematic approach in testing, several words how all that works.

MCU has fixed list of what each control sends: http://www.azslow.com/files/mcu.png
So a list of Notes, CCs and PitchBends (SysEx for the display).

Faderport 8 has INSUFFICIENT number of physical controls to cover the whole list. Different "modes" just transfer different subsets from original message list.

What each signal does is solely defined in the corresponding plug-in inside concrete DAW. For better coverage / more flexibility, take "advanced" plug-in. For MCU and Reaper, from what I know, that is extension by Klinke (https://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=171827)

Only devices with COMPLETE physical coverage provide the same list of functions as original MCU. Up to now, the only alternative device with such complete coverage is Behringer X-Touch (big one).
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Old 03-24-2018, 05:29 AM   #4
satchmo
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Thanks for posting up all your test results the3dge.
Have you tried using the Klinke MCU driver recommended by azslow3?
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Old 03-24-2018, 11:30 PM   #5
inertia
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Thanks for this. I also have the FP8 and recently updated to the new firmware.

I have mine set in Cubase mode which seems to work fairly well.

There is one thing that seems to be missing that was working with the previous firmware and the default Mackie Controller in Reaper - if you edit your mixer view and hide tracks and press "All" on the FP then the channels update to match your mixer view. For me, this is essential to making the work flow much easier on the FP and can navigate more quickly through my channels and hide the ones I don't need to see.
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Old 04-02-2018, 08:58 AM   #6
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I've dropped back to 1.01 for now.

I am trying to muster up some motivation to contribute to the control plugin for Reaper and try and get the Faderport working in Studio One mode where more buttons are functional. A lot of buttons do not send any midi signals in MCU mode.
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Old 06-26-2018, 07:58 PM   #7
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Old 09-29-2018, 06:04 PM   #8
the3dge
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Default Quick update

Been using the FaderPort as my daily console now since I set it up, it's badass. If anyone's on the fence about it, I highly recommend it.

@satchmo - I tried Klinke's plug-in for a spell. It worked, and there were some additional options I could map, but the biggest headache I found was that if you send too many inputs too quickly - for instance, scrolling through channels real quick - it just stops accepting input. It's like it gets overloaded and stops responding, but as soon as you pause for a second it comes back to life. I also had some weirdness with the Track button switching between Pan and Track mode, but as soon as you hit 'Pan' that seems to go away. I ended up switching back to the stock MCU driver because of that "overload", it kept freaking me out making me think my system was crashing. I tried both 15hz and 30hz, didn't seem to make a difference.

@inertia - Is that the case with tracks that are hidden from the mixer panel, and/or tracks marked as separators? Also, re: buttons not sending midi, yea - I found a few. Using the stock drivers, I've been able to map "Edit Plugins" to open the fx chain of the selected track ("Show FX Chain for Selected Tracks" - req's SWS Extension), and "Sends" to trigger "Track: View routing and I/O for current/last touched track". The only buttons I've seen that don't send midi are bypass, macro, link on the left panel, and the "All" button when not in Shift mode. Everything else either works out of the box or with a small time investment in config.

Somewhere inbetween switching from stock to Klinke and back, the "marker" button has gone from moving the faderport into marker "mode", and letting me just drop markers under the current position. Dunno what I did, but that's how I wanted it, so that seems to be working thanks to some handey-wavey black magic.

Thanks @azslow3 and @geoffwaddington for the extra info!

I'm hoping the folks at mixingtable.com will put together a hardwood kit with a wrist-rest for the unit. That'd be amazing.

Cheers -
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:51 PM   #9
FriscoSam
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Default Just bought the Faderport2 (2018)

Hi all,

Ran the installer, updated the firmware, running in MCU (Cubase) mode and it seems I have about 70% functionality at present.
Is anyone planning to write some .ini hacks to expand the features in Reaper? Also, I'm still on ver 4.**

My biggest non-working functions are:

Track scrolling/ selection (this is really messed up),
Zoom,
Markers (this button activates the metronome).

Is it possible that some of the improvements already done for the classic will work with the FP2?
Would Klinkes option be worth a look?

I'm sure this request will benefit a large group.

Thanks all,

Jack
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Old 10-28-2018, 07:42 PM   #10
the3dge
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I've got the FaderPort 8, and tho I know there's overlap I don't know to what extent. I found I had more functionality on the earlier firmware, so I reverted. On the FP8 and the earlier firmware, track scrolling, zoom, and markers are all functional.

I'd recommend trying the original/earlier firmware. And I also recommend trying Klinke's add-ons. Like @azslow3 mentioned, it's a fixed protocol with a certain set of commands. The FaderPorts send some but not all. My understanding is that with Klinke's plugins, you can customize what buttons trigger what.

GL. let us know!


Quote:
Originally Posted by FriscoSam View Post
Hi all,

Ran the installer, updated the firmware, running in MCU (Cubase) mode and it seems I have about 70% functionality at present.
Is anyone planning to write some .ini hacks to expand the features in Reaper? Also, I'm still on ver 4.**

My biggest non-working functions are:

Track scrolling/ selection (this is really messed up),
Zoom,
Markers (this button activates the metronome).

Is it possible that some of the improvements already done for the classic will work with the FP2?
Would Klinkes option be worth a look?

I'm sure this request will benefit a large group.

Thanks all,

Jack
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