There is a lot of stuff you can do with MIDI flows in Usine just with the standard modules, but MIDI messages differ in a couple of ways from most of the other flows which demand that they have to be treated a bit differently.
When you create a typical connection in Usine, the data sent is mostly either a single float value (like 0 and 1 from a switch or [min..max] from a fader) or an array containing the same type of data in all the array elements. Arrays can grow or shrink in size for instance by changing the number of steps in a Sequenced Step module, but the meaning and the data type of each element don't change.
MIDI, on the other hand:
When describing MIDI messages, System Exclusive (or SysEx) data are not included unless specified. Note also that SysEx data aren't necessarily very "exclusive", as the SysEx format is also used for several additions to the original MIDI specification.
Most MIDI documentation naturally relate to how the messages look when sent over a MIDI cable, and the most obvious difference between those descriptions and how the messages turn up in Usine is the number of bytes used.
Over the cable, a Note ON message will consist of three bytes:
In Usine, however, this is represented as a record with four fields of datatype byte: On eg the midi-generator-create module you can see these represented as "chan", "msg", "data 1", and "data 2".
"chan" and "msg" represents the combination of message type and channel number in the status byte.
Other typical messages like channel aftertouch and program change have the same combination of message type and channel number in the status byte over a cable and are split the same way as Note ONs in Usine.
These two do however only have one data byte, so "data 2" is unused. Other messages like eg MDI Clock, only have one byte not containing any channel info, so in those cases only "msg" is used within Usine, while the four byte record layout stays the same.
For a detailed list of the MIDI messages, you can have a look at MIDI Manufacturers Association.
In short, MIDI messages consist of one "status" byte with a value between 128 and 255 followed by 0..n "data" bytes with a value between 0 and 127. The status bytes are divided between "Channel" messages and "System" messages. The channel messages goes from 128 (NOTE-OFF on channel 1) to 239 (PitchWheel on channel 16).
System messages range from 240 (start of System Exclusive dump) to 255 (System Reset). As explained above, Usine splits the message type and channel in two, so you won't see a status byte with a value of 239. Instead that is splitted in to a message of value 224 (which over a cable would be PitchWheel on channel 1) and channel 16.
Summary of MIDI implemetation.
|KEY AFTERTOUCH||160||note||after touch|
|CONTROL CHANGE||176||control number||control value|
|PROGRAM CHANGE||192||program number||-|
|CHAN AFTERTOUCH||208||after touch||-|
|PITCH BEND||224||value (low part)||value (hi part)|
|BEGIN SYSEX||240||factory ID||data|
|MTC QUARTER FRAME||241||data (see MTC specification)||-|
|SONG POS PTR||242||pos (low part)||pos (hi part)|
|SONG SELECT||243||song number||-|
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