Sending / Receiving MIDI

Open Stage Control can send and receive MIDI messages.


MIDI support requires additional software to be installed on the server's system:

  • python (2 / 3)
  • python package rtmidi (version 2.3.2, compiled with --jack-midi flag for JACK MIDI support)

Why an additionnal dependency ?

Providing cross-platform MIDI support is not trivial, as it requires OS-specific compilation that cannot be automated within Open Stage Control's current packaging workflow. Using a python addon seems to be the best compromise so far : the core app remains easy to build, and the extra dependency is easy to install.


When running the app, the -m / -midi switch must be set; it accepts the following options (separated by spaces):

  • list: prints the available MIDI ports to the console; numbers in the first column may be used for input/output definition below
  • device_name:input,output: connect to midi ports input and output; osc messages sent to target midi:device_name will be processed as midi events; Multiple devices can be declared

Linux only:

  • device_name:virtual: creates a virtual midi device with one input port and one output port
  • jack: use JACK MIDI instead of ALSA (add as extra parameter)

Widget settings

In order to send MIDI messages, a widget must have at least one target formatted as follows:

midi:device_name (where device_name is one of the declared midi devices)

Supported MIDI messages

Define static argument values using the preArgs option in order to complete the respective MIDI message.

/note channel note velocity

NoteOn event or noteOff if velocity equals 0.

  • channel: integer between 1 and 16
  • note: integer between 0 and 127
  • velocity: integer between 0 and 127


A push button might be configured as follows in order to send a MIDI note whose velocity is defined by the button's on/off value:

  • address: /note
  • preArgs: [1, 60] (for MIDI channel 1, and note 60 / C3)
  • on: 100 (for noteOn velocity of 100 on button push)
  • off: 0 (to send a noteOff on button release)
  • target: ["midi:device_name"] (where device_name is one of the declared midi devices defined during setup)

/control channel cc value

Control change event.

  • channel: integer between 1 and 16
  • cc: integer between 0 and 127
  • value: integer between 0 and 127

/program channel program

Program change event.

  • channel: integer between 1 and 16
  • program: integer between 0 and 127

/pitch channel pitch

PitchWheel event.

  • channel: integer between 1 and 16
  • pitch: integer between 0 and 16383

/sysex msg v1 .. vN

System exclusive message.

  • msg: hexadecimal sysex data string of the form f0 ... f7. You may include placeholders of the form nn which will be replaced by v1, .., vN respectively.
  • v1, .., vN: values encoded as hexadecimal data strings to include in msg. Most probably, you will need to sepcify a custom module in order to convert numeric widget values into the required hexadecimal format. In general, this conversion will be different for each manufacturer / device.

For a very simple example, refer to session 'sysex_device_inquiry.js' found in the application's sub folder 'resources/app/examples/'. Please remember to adjust the button's target to the device_name used in your MIDI setup.