Questions & Answers

Allow Multi-Instruments to Receive on Multiple MIDI Channels, not Just Channel 1

+109 votes
asked Apr 4, 2018 in MIDI Editing by robertgray3 (42,190 points)
edited Apr 6, 2018 by robertgray3

Couldn't find this feature request so I decided to request it. This popular one doesn’t actually mention multiple input channels.

For people who use multi-timbral instruments such as Kontakt or Structure within a Multi-Instrument, there isn't currently a way to transmit MIDI notes on different channels into the Multi-Isntrument container.

This would be much appreciated as it allows for more creative possibilities and more efficient storing / recalling of instrument setups, such as a template of a Piano / Bass / Guitar / Drums setup that you consistently use.

14 Answers

+10 votes
answered Apr 5, 2018 by gottfriedbergmair (15,820 points)
selected Apr 6, 2018 by robertgray3
Best answer
I have voted up your request.

Here is a nice feature request about multi-timbral instruments using a multi-instrument:

+4 votes
answered Apr 5, 2018 by robertgray3 (42,190 points)
Thanks Gottfried! Nice FR to mention, I had voted up that request previously but I noticed that it didn't mention/request multiple MIDI inputs so I added this one
0 votes
answered Aug 21, 2018 by rohanwalker (880 points)
yes, i agree, I have been Midi-ing for 30 years, and have a rack of multi-timbral multi-midi-channel synths. eg. Roland U220, Roland D110, Sound Canvas, all of which are hopelessly out of reach right now. It would seem that presently StudioOne 3's tracks cannot differentiate the separate midi channels within the module, even when the midi interface is recognized and configured correctly. I am still working the problem, my next experiment will be to create a separate "Keyboard instrument" under "External Devices" for every midi channel. (in my case 147 of the dreadful things... :-) ) - I will check back when I've finished in three weeks...sigh :-)
+1 vote
answered Aug 21, 2018 by rohanwalker (880 points)

well, my initial experiment seems to have worked. (at least from the StudioOne screen anyway) - I admit i have not tried "actually" playing anything yet...

Overview: Create many individual "instruments" with the same midi "Port" but isolate each instrument as a "single midi channel"

Simplest description: Each midi channel for each module is a new "instrument" with the "same port", but with a "singular midi channel"

Note also: These external instruments will NOT appear in the right-hand "browser", they can only be found when creating a "track" as

Add tracks/Output/Existing Instruments - drop-down menu.


1. Under the Options/External Devices Menu, Create a "New Instrument"

2. Name and identify the instrument with the "Manufacturer" and "Device Name" so, in my case this would be "Roland" and "U220-01-01"

Note: I have several U220s so each new "instrument" is identified as U220-01, U220-02. etc. BUT

Each MIDI channel within the instrument also needs to be easily seen on the "Track Display"

so "module one midi channel one and two" are specifically named. - U220-01-01, U220-01-02 etc.

AND each consecutive "Physical Instrument" needs to be isolated through a separate Midi plug on your interface.

so each instrument must be identified as eg.

U220-01-01 for "Module One", "Midi channel 1"

U220-01-02 for "Module One", "Midi channel 2"

U220-01-03 for "Module One", "Midi channel 3"


U220-02-01 for "Module Two", "Midi Channel 1"

U220-02-02 for "Module Two", "Midi Channel 2"

and of course each new instrument should be addressed through your midi interface TO A SINGLE PORT.

so again, each channel of U220-01 is a separate instrument BUT ALL OF THEM FOR THAT MODULE are addressed to the same "port"

U220-01-01 Port 1 - First Module, Midi Channel 1

U220-01-02 Port 1 - First Module, Midi Channel 2

U220-01-03 Port 1 - First Module, Midi Channel 3


U220-02-01 Port 2 - Second Module, Midi Channel 1

U220-02-02 Port 2 - Second Module, Midi Channel 2

U220-02-03 Port 2 - Second Module, Midi Channel 3

Simplest description: Each midi channel for each module is a new "instrument" with the "same port but consecutive midi channels."

Note also again: These external instruments will NOT appear in the right-hand "browser", they can only be found when creating a "track" as

Add tracks/Output/Existing Instruments - drop-down menu.

0 votes
answered Aug 21, 2018 by rohanwalker (880 points)
yes, it works.

so. each midi channel for a single module needs to be a newly created "instrument"

final comment: please be careful. as you set this up, it can be a bit confusing as, when you create a new "track" you HAVE TO NAME IT SO THAT YOU RECOGNIZE IT.

i got hopelessly lost as i was creating newly assigned midi channels, they were identified on the "track" page as the same thing.

+1 vote
answered Aug 22, 2018 by rohanwalker (880 points)

one final observation: - this solution works. i have tested it with several multi-timbral synthesizers.

However: - the editor within the track does not allow for timbre preset assignment or naming.

the only way to do this is to use a jog-wheel assigned to midi message no.12.

This is very cumbersome indeed, and inaccurate.

and there is no display of the preset, as there is with virtual instruments.

perhaps this problem as a whole, is something that Presonus Corporate might think about looking at.

it would probably be a fairly simple code-mod to get it working correctly.

in the next download release.

just a thought :-)

+4 votes
answered Nov 29, 2018 by joaodamas (570 points)
Kontakt is the most popular sampler out there. If I have, for example, a violin staccato patch in Kontakt channel 1 and the same violin with a legato patch in channel 2, it would be tremendously more efficient to choose the midi channel for each note in the editor using a single track and instance of Kontakt, rather than having 2 tracks, each with an instance of Kontakt for each articulation.

Besides being more rational, organized and composer friendly, it's less CPU and RAM usage.
0 votes
answered May 22, 2019 by th23 (280 points)

@joadamas You are absolutely right. I'm currently using two Kontakt racks with each containing 3 to 10 instruments.

I´ve been very disapointed to see that it is not possible to see the several instruments as dedicated tracks in the mixer.

My intention had been to ged rid of the old Cakewalk Sonar X3 stuff when I've boughtto Studion One version 3 and upgraded to 4 Even in 4.5 there seems to be no way to achive that.

So I've bought Studio One 3 and 4 without using it.crying

+2 votes
answered May 22, 2019 by robertgray3 (42,190 points)
@th32 That is incorrect, you most definitely can see Kontakt’s multiple outputs as multiple channels in the mixer. I’m pretty sure this FR has to do with a different situation than what you’re talking about. Ask this question on the Community Support forum and I’m sure someone can help you.
+1 vote
answered May 31, 2019 by th23 (280 points)


Maybe for you, I don't know. Unfortunately not for me. I will open a new question and attach screen shots so you'll see what I mean.

I've recently bought "The Orchestra" by sonuscore which is using multitimbral instruments and allows to split them to different channels. Could make it with Sonar, but not with Studio One.

+1 vote
answered Nov 21, 2019 by joehander1 (1,310 points)
Yes we need this!!!
0 votes
answered Nov 28, 2019 by robertgray3 (42,190 points)

It would appear you're talking about better support for External Instruments, which has very little to do with this feature request. This is about the Multi-Instrument feature of Studio One, for multiple plugins wrapped in a single instrument. Software, not hardware.

Luckily it seems like you found the current way to do this (with multiple sequencer tracks). You're right, it's not as easy as a few other DAWs but it's pretty much on par with a lot of the others...

I mean ill take the votes lol
0 votes
answered Jan 9, 2020 by rohanwalker (880 points)
Dear Gotfield

the title of the discussion is "allow multi instruments to receive on Multiple Midi Channels, not just channel 1"

an external midi device is most certainly a "multi instrument container"

so in real terms, my answer is completely relevant to the question as it was stated.
+1 vote
answered Sep 23, 2021 by michaelmoreno2 (160 points)

Yes, I would definitely like to see this feature. There are very powerful VST instruments such as Organteq (see first image below), a virtual pipe organ with multiple keyboards and a floor pedal keyboard (like a typical pipe organ) that give you the ability to assign a specific midi channel to each so they can be controlled independently by separate hardware midi keyboards and controllers (see second image below). Unfortunately, Studio One will not allow you to send note information from multiple midi hardware instruments via separate midi channels to a single VST - the note information is only received from channel 1 of the hardware midi keyboards. While you could run multiple instances of Organteq to use the multiple virtual keyboards with an exclusive corresponding hardware midi keyboard, you lose the ability to control the sounds of each virtual keyboard in one virtual instrument window - which the VST was appropriately designed to allow - pipe organs have stops and levers for the suite of keyboards they incorporate all sitting right in front of you.