MIDI All the Things Hack Chat

with mitxela [Tim Alex Jacobs]

Wednesday, March 24, 2021 12:00 pm PDT Local time zone:
Hack Chat
Similar projects worth following

Tim Alex Jacobs will host the Hack Chat on Wednesday, March 24 at noon Pacific.

Time zones got you down? Try our handy time zone converter.


In our technologically complex world, standards are a double-edged sword. While they clearly make it possible for widgets and doodads to interoperate with each other, they also tend to drift away from their original intention over time, thanks to the march of progress or even market forces. If there's one thing you can expect about standards, it's that they beget other standards.

One standard that has stood the test of time, with modification of course, is the Musical Instrument Digital Interface, or MIDI. It's hard to overstate the impact MIDI has had on the music world since it was first dreamed up in the early 1980s. Started amid a Wild West of competing proprietary synchronization standards, MIDI quickly became the de facto interface for connecting electronic musical instruments together. And as it did, it moved from strictly pro-grade equipment down the market to prosumer and home users, fueled in part by the PC revolution.

Tim Alex Jacobs, who is perhaps better known as Mitxela on his YouTube channel, has long been interested in applying MIDI to unusual corners of the musical world. We've seen him MIDI-fy things that barely qualify as musical instruments, and also build a polyphonic synthesizer so small it fits within the shell of the DIN connector that's so strongly associated with the MIDI standard. Tim joins us on the Hack Chat this week to talk about his experiences with MIDI, and to help us understand all the ways we can work with the interface in our builds.

  • Hack Chat Transcript, Part 2

    Dan Maloney03/24/2021 at 20:04 0 comments

    miguelmurca12:49 PM

    Well, thanks for the time, goodbye all! 😊👋

    SHIK12:49 PM

    charliex12:49 PM

    mitxela12:50 PM
    Someone mentioned Korg earlier - I like Korg and their attempts to make miniature versions of their earlier synths. I don't own any of them but I applaud their goal. Also, they tend to release the schematics for them too, which is awesome

    charliex12:50 PM
    yeah also they are fun to hack

    SHIK12:51 PM
    nts-1 is great idea

    mitxela12:51 PM
    I have a monotron and MIDIfied it and it was a great experience

    mitxela12:51 PM
    they labelled the test pads on the board

    SHIK12:51 PM
    Is that the one you made a video about?

    Jerry Isdale12:52 PM
    beyond midi, have you looked at EuroRack synths? I have some friends really into those (robodog, etc)

    mitxela12:52 PM
    Yes although it has very poor audio in the video, I should probably make a fresh video about it

    SHIK12:52 PM
    it's not poly, right?

    mitxela12:52 PM
    @Jerry Isdale Ah, only very briefly. Mostly I've just experimented with VCV Rack which is virtual modular

    mitxela12:53 PM
    Monotron is indeed mono

    SHIK12:53 PM
    So maybe try to make it polyphonic on your refreshed video..

    SHIK12:53 PM
    just an idea :)

    mitxela12:54 PM
    This would be very hard, seeing as it's an analog synth. You'd need to duplicate all of the circuitry to add more oscillators

    mitxela12:54 PM
    However, it does have an arpeggiator

    mitxela12:54 PM
    that I added

    SHIK12:54 PM

    mitxela12:56 PM
    I also want to make more videos about other projects, problem is making and editing videos takes so much time. I really ought to make a video about my Midi Interceptor project, that one deserves more attention

    Kevin.stork12:57 PM

    mitxela12:57 PM
    Well, anyway, if anyone wants to talk further feel free to email me, I try to respond to everything although it sometimes takes me a few days to get back to people

    charliex12:58 PM

    Jerry Isdale12:58 PM
    aloha! thanks for the chat!

    mitxela12:58 PM
    Cool - see you all next time I guess!

    charliex12:58 PM
    til next time

    And it looks like we're up against our one-hour limit too, so good timing! I want to thank mitxela for his time today, and everyone else for the great questions.

    SHIK12:59 PM
    Thanks all :)

    Thanks a bunch, this was great.

    Next week we change gears entirely to talk about enormous Tesla coils and artificial lightning:


    Physics of Lightning Hack Chat

    Greg Leyh will host the Hack Chat on Wednesday, March 31 at noon Pacific. Time zones got you down? Try our handy time zone converter. Of all the things that were around to terrify our ancestors, lightning must have been right up there on the list.

    Read this on Hackaday

    charliex1:00 PM
    adding midi to tesla coils

    Yeah, maybe it's not so different after all...


  • Hack Chat Transcript, Part 1

    Dan Maloney03/24/2021 at 20:03 0 comments

    mitxela12:00 PM

    OK, welcome to that Hack Chat everyone, let's get started. I'm Dan and I'll be moderating today along with Dusan as we welcome Mitxela to the Hack Chat. Hi Tim, welcome aboard!

    mitxela12:00 PM

    Dusan Petrovic12:00 PM
    Hello and welcome!

    Jan12:00 PM
    Hi there!

    william.berg0812:01 PM

    tom12:01 PM

    James Murphy12:01 PM
    Goooood Day Sirs!

    Chris Weiss12:01 PM

    Glad to have you on today, and to have a lot of new names in the chat.

    Matt Starfield joined the room.12:01 PM

    Can you perhaps kick us off with a little about your background and such?

    SHIK12:02 PM
    Hi :)

    Tim this game console you made is just genius!

    James Murphy12:02 PM
    We only accept one or two new clients per month.

    Get Found On The Internet.

    We do Amazing SEO and Digital Marketing.

    WE ARE Highly Focused on our client's specific needs.

    This is why we only take on 1 or 2 new clients per month.



    Please look at and Read over our Website Services Section. If you are providing the same services please don't call or contact us. Also, We're no longer on Facebook due to their Anti-Christian Conservative Business Practices so don't bother looking for us there anymore!

    Back to Serious Business:

    CAPTURE BUSINESS and GET FOUND, you need a professional-looking website properly optimized to rank well on today's search engines!



    Founder James Murphy announced that has been added to the State of Wisconsin SUPPLIER NETWORK.

    “We’re very proud of our record of success with Wisconsin Business and Non-Profit sector and appreciate being added to the list of Wisconsin Suppliers.”

    Wisconsin Supplier Network Link:

    Veteran & Women-Owned Business.

    Supporting our Military Men and Women who have served and are currently serving through our presence on RALLY POINT LINK:

    In addition to Rally point, we maintain a VETERANS RESOURCE PAGE on C.U.T. WISCONSIN. Link:

    Our Made In Wisconsin label Participation:

    “The Made In Wisconsin label shows the pride that has gone into our products. Letting people know that they are produced in Wisconsin helps us share that our work is done with a level of craftsmanship that is widely known and appreciated.”

    - James M Murphy - We are certifying that the product or service on which our clients seek to use fulfills program requirements. The Made In Wisconsin Program complements the Wisconsin Department of Trade, Agriculture, and Consumer Protection’s Something Special From Wisconsin™ Program, offering companies two ways to show their state pride.

    Contact Real Wisconsin Website Design: (920) 785-1219

    Our email:

    Note: Mr. Murphy also serves Brown County Wisconsin as an Elected Supervisor for District 15. If you wish to contact Supervisor Murphy Regarding County Business please use the government email or our private email at

    miguelmurca12:03 PM
    uh, mods?

    Working on it

    Vincent12:03 PM
    Boo bots!

    Ben12:03 PM
    Naughty bot

    Kevin.stork joined the room.12:03 PM

    mitxela12:03 PM
    Well... I have been playing around with MIDI for quite a few years now, along with various other electronics and software projects

    James Murphy12:04 PM
    I thought you wanted to know our background?

    James Murphy12:04 PM

    mitxela12:04 PM
    I wouldn't say I'm an expert in MIDI

    dracolytch joined the room.12:04 PM

    No, sorry -- I was talking to our guest.

    Patrick Adamo joined the room.12:04 PM

    James Murphy12:04 PM
    Can you explain midi to those of us who've heard about it but never utilitized it?...

    Read more »

View all 2 event logs

Enjoy this event?



Interested in attending?

Become a member to follow this event or host your own