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Sustain pedal not working in live :/ Help?!

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apocketsymphony View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote apocketsymphony Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Sustain pedal not working in live :/ Help?!
    Posted: 06 Jan 2016 at 4:14am
Hello all. Hoping I can get some feedback on this issue that has been tearing away at my soul. 

I'm a new user of Ableton Live and have been having a problem with my midi keyboard:
The sustain pedal will not work! 
The problem in detail is as such: When the pedal is pressed down, I receive the yellow blinking lights 
indicating that the signal is being received, but nothing happens as far as sustain when playing 
in ableton. I've tried switching to various sounds such as truepiano, the default grand piano sound, and of
course tried it on operator. Still nothing. If anyone has suggestions on how to try fixing this it would be appreciated. 

Here are some specifics on the gear/software being used:

Computer: PC with Windows 10 and latest updates
Software: Ableton Live Suite (9.5)
Midi Keyboard: Nektar Impact LX88 (Connected Via usb)
Sustain Pedal: M-Audio SP-2 (Have tried messing with the polarity switch, but both ways still no sustain effects at all).

I've read various posts on this and have not been able to find
a solution to the problem.

I will be checking this post with regularity, so if I have not included some vital 
information needed for troubleshooting on this, please do not hesitate to ask for it. 

Thank you in advance and happy new year!
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RobJones View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RobJones Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Jan 2016 at 10:33am
Happy New Year! Sounds like you need to turn on the MIDI input for the keyboard/pedal in the preferences. If you click on the MIDI tab after opening the preferences, you'll see a list of all connected MIDI devices. If your sustain pedal isn't working it probably means you only have 'track' turned on for the keyboard's MIDI input. If you also turn on 'Remote' (so Live responds to messages other than just note on and off), then the pedal should work....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote apocketsymphony Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Jan 2016 at 5:09pm
Thanks for the quick reply!
Under Midi Port in preferences I had/have all of input options (and output options)
set to ON, that is track, sync, and remote. 

Double checked to ensure the problem still insists and unfortunately it does :/ 
At first this had me afraid that maybe there's something wrong with the pedal itself, 
but I remain convinced that it's some setting in ableton, since I do receive the blinking 
midi message lights when pressing the pedal.

anyone, anyone?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RobJones Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Jan 2016 at 2:06pm
So the MIDI is being received and if you have Remote on for the input then the messages being received can be used to control instruments (on any tracks that are record armed). So, it's therefore got to be the MIDI message being sent by the pedal not being recognised by whatever soft synth you're playing for some reason.

I would first try recording a MIDI clip and pressing the pedal a few times, then looking at the envelope section in the clip editor (session view) or automation lane on the track (arrangement view) to see what MIDI data the pedal is sending - it should be '64-Hold pedal'. If that's all good then it must be an issue with the instrument you're playing.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote apocketsymphony Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Jan 2016 at 10:41pm
I checked out the envelopes section in sessinon view as described after recording a small 
loop with the instrument "operator". The first box reads "Midi Ctr" with a little red square next to 
it, and in the second box I selected "64 hold pedal". The option for 64 hold pedal already 
had the little red square next to it before I selected it on the list. 

I then tried playing back the loop and still heard no sustain in the recording, and also 
tried playing my controller live while pressing down the pedal and didn't get any effects. 

I tried this whole process with other instruments "such as grand piano" and received 
the same results (aka no results) :/. As far as I understand from reading other forums online, 
both of these instruments aforementioned should be capable of receiving the 64 hold pedal message. 

I appreciate your patience in sending advice in this matter... if you do have any other 
ideas I would gratefully accept them. 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RobJones Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan 2016 at 11:05am
Well you're definitely sending the correct MIDI info to the instruments so this isl a bit strange. Most devices should respond to CC 64 by holding notes, when a value of 127 is received. All my Live presets do, including the Simpler preset Grand Piano.

Feel free to send a screenshot of the MIDI clip with the CC 64 (hold pedal) envelope, so I can make sure it looks right....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RobJones Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan 2016 at 11:33am
so you know what it should look like...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote apocketsymphony Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Jan 2016 at 1:40am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote apocketsymphony Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Jan 2016 at 1:51am
RobJones, 

Here is a screenshot of what I have going on in session view. 
So with everything set as displayed, I DO hear sustain when I play back 
the recording, that is in the areas where I have the envelope set at 64 (highlighted red). 

This is some sort of progress, as before I wasn't able to assign sustain to the pedal message at all. 

But the original problem still remains: The pedal does not sustain (or do anything other than send
blank messages) when I'm playing a virtual instrument live. It's only after I've recorded a loop, 
opened clip view, and changed the envelope for that recording, as you just taught me, that I hear 
any effect from the pedal at all. And because I play a considerable amount of piano and other keyboard instruments, it's rather important that I figure out how to make the pedal sustain while playing it live/recording the loop itself. 

Thanks for your patience with this!  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RobJones Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Jan 2016 at 1:08pm
So, next thing to find out is what MIDI your pedal is sending then... if you're seeing the MIDI indicator flash then it's sending some kind of message to Live - if you record a MIDI clip whilst using the pedal, you can then go to this same envelope window that you've drawn a curve into and see what CC number has a red mark next to it (by looking at the list that 64-hold pedal is in) and then you'll know what message is being sent. It seems odd that a sustain pedal would send a different message but foot controllers can typically be set to a range of MIDI values. Maybe time to check the pedal's user guide as it doesn't appear to be a problem with Live.
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