Top positive review
7 people found this helpful
Excellent Midi Interface
on May 31, 2014
This is a very useful device, particularly for use with IOS devices. The build quality is excellent, and its flexibility is amazing, particularly because it transfers audio streams as well as midi from IOS devices to a computer.
As far as audio goes, you really need to have a DAW open with both an instrument and audio track set up. Without the assistance of the DAW, you won't get the audio feed. Also, setting up with the audio interface as an aggregate device seems to work, though it was a bit of trial and error figuring out the correct I/Os. You can run the ICM2 as an input and the audio box as the output, but the aggregate seems to be a bit more efficient.
Depending on the IOS app, you need to do a bit of tinkering with the midi settings, and I haven't had success with all of them. But the better ones, such as Korg's synths and Waldorf's, have a lot of midi control, and set up properly they work well. I run the setup into Logic Pro, with an audio track and an instrument track, and a bus set up for the midi track. It seems that you need an audio track set up and configured properly for the audio pass through to work. Once set up, even if the audio is muted, you will receive the audio stream. It's really nice to record a midi sequence in Logic, then hit play, and send that sequence back to any IOS app, which then plays using its own sounds with the resulting audio running in the DAW.
As far as support goes, it is true that the online support is spotty, and the manual doesn't offer a large amount of information. I do wish that the company would post a few set up videos. That said, I spoke to the CFO of the company-it's a small company-and he was very helpful in helping me setup the device, and staying on the phone with me for as long as it took. He was genuinely interested in helping, and that reminded me that it's well worth supporting small companies that are making cutting-edge products, even if they don't have the best online resources. I'd trade all the online resources for a real person any day. For those reviewers complaining about the lack of support, just get on the phone, and you'll get a real person helping you out. If you're too lazy to do that, you can still figure the device out on your own.
For those complaining about the adapters, one thing to remember is that for the price, and even far beyond it, this box has routing flexibility and audio capabilities that no other midi box has. The CFO mentioned that the price at which they're selling their boxes doesn't leave a great profit margin, and I believe it. This box and the ICM4 could easily go at 2-3 times the price, and it would still be worth it.
I am not a midi expert, in fact I can't stand the midi setup process. I like to play and make music. That said, it's worth spending an hour or two setting the box up and experimenting with different settings. Once you've got it right, save the settings as a template in your DAW, and you're good to go.