MCU Pro + 1 or more XTenders

Hi all,

the MCU Pro runs like a charm under Ardour 4, out of the box. No I try to get an MCU XT to run with it, but all I can achieve is the XT mirroring the MCU Pro. Kind of expected as I connected both parallel in JACK. If I don’t connect parallel I get only one going, apparently they don’t talk to each other. (Nice side effect I discovered: with Ardour it’s possible to run an XT standalone, as a poor man’s controller…)
How do I convince Ardour to see a 16 channel device with 16 faders (and do the respective bank shifts etc)? Do I have to set device IDs and how do I do that? After that, how do I tell Ardour that the extender is left of the main unit?
What am I missing here? Happy about every hint.


You have to build a new device info file that describes the multi-device setup. Take a look at the existing device info files. If it isn’t obvious, ask. It will be faster (probably) to ask on IRC.

Ok thanks Paul. I will publish the working one once I succeed :slight_smile:

@madmaxmiller: Hmm, wait. Check the “nucleus.device” file. You should just be able to add an “Extenders” property to get this working. The SSL Nucleus has 16 faders but acts from an MCP perspective like 1 master + 1 extender. It is slightly more complex than that, because it also uses IP MIDI, not normal MIDI. But I think this approach has been used by someone else who has an MC Pro + XT setup.

Hi Paul, thanks for putting me onto the right path… It was actually easier: I copied the mcpro.device into mcpro1ext.device, then edited the new file, named the device “MCU Pro with 1 XT” and set “Externders” to “1”. That gave me a second device in the Ardour section in qjackctl which I connected to the actual extender and voila!
Cheers from Adelaide

Umm sorry for bothering again… is there actually a complete list of .device file options? I’m after an option to place the extender, pretty much like “left of” and “right of” in an xorg.conf file for multiple monitors… Simply swapping the MIDI device connections in JACK doesn’t work and the standard connection -MCU onto first Ardour connector and XT onto the second- sees the XT right of the MCU, but i actually need it other way round. Cheers…

I have been looking at the mackie control code and right now master is always the the left most controller. There is no setting to change this. The logic is that there is always at least one controller so treat the lowest controller as master and number up. I think by the time we hit 3 devices, most people would feel it is wrong. There are two general ways of doing this “right”, either put master at right end or put master in centre. It would be easy to make master always highest (right most) controller, but this would break the SSL nucleus which has the master physically attached to the extender on the left.

The complete list of .device options is in code :slight_smile: but really I think all of them get used in at least one of the stock device files. I am thinking to make a “sample.device” with all options but some commented out (all commented out?) or something like that.

As you have a working two device setup, could you make a mantis feature request to add your device file to the set device files shipped? Attach the working device file you have.

@madmaxmiller: I put a feature request in for a setting to set master to right most or right most minus 1, which should work for most people. (Mantis 6357) Probably it will not show up till 4.2ish.

@lenovens: cool, thanks for that. Another case where program logic (start counting at 0 and go to the right with increasing numbers) doesn’t reflect real world :slight_smile: Regarding the file: it is really the stock file with the “extenders” property set to “1”. The ideal feature would be to have a dropdown list in the Mackie dialogue which lets you chose 0,1,2 or 3 extenders. V4.5 could let you arrange them (such as 2 on the left, 1 on the right or so) as in Presonus’ Studio One…

@madmaxmiller: Patch went in today. So look for it in 4.1. Add a line like:

To put the master on the right side in a two surface configuration. 0 means no shift, another number means shift right this many times. My way of making zero based counting make sense :wink:

Thanks for the thread. Helped me a lot to configure my Icon QConPro + QconEx Controller in Ardour.

The display of the QconEx Extension but not works. Is it provided for a specific command?
I’m looking for a command like: — TwoCharacterDisplayExtenders value=“yes”/ —
Is there something?

Greetings scanlin

Thanks heaps lenovens and sorry for thanking late - I was a bit busy with other things lately :slight_smile:

…downloading the nightly build and wondering if it is in there… I missed the actual line in your post, lenovens. Could you please re-post it?
Cheers, MMM

@lenovens Sorry I’m stupid, I found it in the bug tracker: Thanks again, MMM

@madmaxmiller: Ya the line vanished because of the “<>” made it look like HTML :slight_smile: Sorry for the confusion.

@scanlin: The muli-line display on extension should just work if it does on the master. The extension is expected to have the same setup as the master section. In my testing with two units, Both displays just worked. The only settings are for the time display and the two character display in the global section of the master unit. I would first want to know if the display works at all on the extension, try switching the two around and make sure it displays the first 8 tracks when plugged in as a master. Also you would have to have at least 9 tracks to see anything on the extension :slight_smile: Also remember that each unit has to have it’s own midi port and be connected to both the ardour input and output. Something else to try… Does moving a fader controlled by the extension in the GUI with a mouse make the extension fader move?

By the way, there is no way of setting up to use two master sections :slight_smile: If you use two master units, one of them will act like an extension.

(Long winded and bad english… )