Guitar to MIDI without external hardware

playing with dwarf today i got this:

as you can see there isn’t any midi devices cabled, but we can play generators only with our devices (without add more plugin).
Actually is not perfect, is only a first attempt.
If compared to my Sonus there is some little more latency and not always notes are triggered correctly but i think that shaping a little bit the entering sound could be good enough for improving the system.
If someone thath know sound enginering/shaping better than me could try i would be gratefull… actually I’m not even able to use a compressor or a noise gate correctly :sweat_smile:
Here a pair of funny pedalboard, even if this thing is still really embryonic:


a couple of words regarding the “module”, so possibly someone could improve it.

The audio to CV pitch port goes to the CV round; the decimal component is used to the actual note suddivision and goes to a mindi infamous trough a pair of attenuverter booster in order to match the two different ranges (0.01-0.99 to 12 semitones).
The integer goes to the MIDI transpose passing in the booster to match the different ranges.
The gate of "audio to CV pitch " is adressed to the value of the infamous Mindi.
The trickiest part is match input sound with the “audio to CV” parameters…


With Cardinal Mini now in beta, that might be easier to handle vs the custom blocks with CV mappings and should have less latency in the end too.

See DISTRHO - Cardinal Mini for the cardinal-mini discussion

I have not tried this, but the idea is to just set up something like this:


Hi @CarloDossi

Have you seen our Guitar Synths?

We have a collection of boards that work exactly this way: Synth Pedalboards - MOD Audio website



Wow, great! Thanks a lot @falkTX!
I saw the plugin but I’ve always be afraid from modular synth, so I did not explore it.
Thanks for the screenshoot, I’ll never reach it alone!
I tried it and the latency is quite not noticeable and tracking and sensitivity are lot better!
You saved me to waste other time!
Well, after all it was a CV-MIDI didactic sunday for me :smile:


Hi @gianfranco ,
Sure! They are some of my favourite factory pedalboard! Actually I was playing with the “chord” one when I decided to go deep in understanding little more of the functioning. So, watching the great Jesse’s video (that I suggest to all: Guitar Synths - Pedalboard Breakdown - YouTube) I started messing around whit the first module until I went to MIDI. Since I love “MDA ePiano” sound i tried to reach a working pedalboard.
It’s really funny looking logical solution to music need!
(the solution proposed by FalkTX is million time better however!)
Thanks for this great little Toy!

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@CarloDossi, would you like to share the resulting pedal? I would like to test it :slightly_smiling_face:


they are in the beginning of this topic.

Do you mean the one suggested by FalkTX?
Here it is!

I just added the Eq.
The “audio to CV” plugin has a good “info” description, use it to smooth parameter to your guitar, taste and style.

Sorry for the horrible sound sample it was unintended

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Thanks, @CarloDossi.

I tested, I’m having fun :slight_smile: . Using 128 buffer, the latency is quite imperceptible. But 256 it’s really perceptible. I had changed because I have a fat serial pedalboard, but falkTX portals worked like a charm and I went back to 128.

I noticed that there isn’t sensibility detection. Do you have any trick related to this? I’m trying to play a trumpet, but currently I’m doing more loud instead of music.

Other think that I noticed is that MIDI are mapping one tone above (I play E and sounds D).

There is a module within Cardinal Mini that allows to tweak the voltage in precise amounts.
Since it all works in 1v/oct, just tweak it in 1/12 steps.


yes he came saying “Merry Christmas” and he brought us another half Dwarf as present, amazing.

This is strange, I tried and actully it is. But the keyboard on the screen is correct.
I just changed the generator and it is fixed by it self, also when i go back to the same generator… weird. Try…

not yet but if you look to Guitar Synths - Pedalboard Breakdown - YouTube there is a module ( n 6) that act on this… you can explore on your GSYNTH pedalboard. If I’ll do something similar on this pedalboard I’ll share. However take in mind that I’m completely novice to this modular plugin (cardinal) so i’ll probably suggest the long and wrost way to get a solution… but I will try :sweat_smile:


As @CarloDossi says, the guitar synths pedalboards manage this issue. I think you need an Audio to CV plugin before the Cardinal because the Audio to CV Pitch only deals with pitch, not volume.

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It should work. I Used the approach of Guitar synth pedalboard but adressing to a volume plugin instead use a VCA… only because it was easyer for me to monitor the volume behaviour.
Actually when you close and open the pedalboard the pitch shift down of a whole tone, replace the generator and all will return in tune … just don’ ask me why.
As I said, I think this is not the better way to achieve your purpose once “cardinal” is on the screen. It’s just the only I know at this time.


Interesting stuff here…
If the Organelle is able to do it with a “simple” Pd patch, surely the DuoX and Dwarf can do it even better without having to load a whole Cardinal patch?


the cardinal patch is just to get a cv quantizer (being able to set the scale too) and then convert it to MIDI.
would be quite doable to convert those into individual plugins, I brought up the cardinal plugin mostly because it is quick to experiment with.

on the organelle video we can see the audio to midi conversion does not try to keep track of note length, there is a dedicated parameter for it instead. not sure why it is this way, perhaps a trick to make it more reliable?

@dreamer since this is PD based, would it be something hvcc could handle?


That depends on which objects are used in the patch. Not all are supported and many that are have some specific limitations.
I expect a patch like this to use FFT, which for instance is not available (although there is some discussion on how to implement some of those: Supporting rfft~ and rifft~ · Wasted-Audio/hvcc · Discussion #99 · GitHub )

An overview of supported objects is here: Supported vanilla objects | hvcc

[Edit: I checked the patch and incompatible objects they use are: sigmund~, clone, list, bag, text, makefilename, value - so no fft objects, but not going to work without significant rewriting. sigmund~ is the most problematic one here. It’s what separates an incoming signal to separate sinsoidal components]

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By the way, a functionnal and quick answer to a long asked feature, that went completely unnoticed! You guys never cease to amaze me…


I modified the original G2MIDI pedalboard today for use with pizz on electric violin and got some interesting results! I’ll post an audio clip later if I have time.


Here’s what I came up with!

I look forward to making some more variants with different midi generators! :smiley: