Free Bitwig Studio 8-Track License for all LinnStrument Owners
Bitwig Studio 8-Track is a very powerful DAW, similar in look and feel to Ableton Live but with MPE (MIDI Polyphonic Expression) compatibility in its sequencer and built-in software instruments, a valuable plus for LinnStrument owners.
A free license for Bitwig Studio 8-Track is included with every LinnStrument. If you bought direct from my site, it was included in my shipping notification email. If you bought from a dealer or used, register your purchase (under the LinnStrument menu) to get your free license.
Once you get your license, go to the following address on Bitwig's site to create an account and download the installer, which is the same download for the free demo, 8-Track or full version of Bitwig Studio:
Install the download and run it. You will be asked for your Bitwig Studio 8-Track license code, which will be automatically recognized as an 8-Track license and enable the Bitwig Studio 8-Track version. If you don't see this prompt, click FILE menu > Show Dashboard, then in the new window that appears, click the License Info button to enter your license code.
Then do the following:
1) Connect LinnStrument to your computer via USB, then start Bitwig.
Whenever you start Bitwig while LinnStrument is connected, or connect LinnStrument while Bitwig is running, Bitwig will automatically set LinnStrument's Per-Split Settings for MPE use:
MIDI Mode = Channel Per Note
Bend Range = 24
Timbre/Y = CC74
Loudness/Z = Channel Pressure
Bitwig will recognize that LinnStrument is connected and automatically set its Controller settings for LinnStruent for MPE use, To inspect those settings, click FILE menu > SHOW DASHBOARD, then click SETTINGS and CONTROLLERS. Here are those settings:
If they are not set as shown, set them manually.
2) Load an MPE sound.
To load an MPE sound from one of Bitwig's internal instruments, follow the 3 steps shown in the picture below.
To load a third-party MPE plug-in synth, load your desired MPE synth onto an instrument track, then in the "Device Inspector" at left, turn on the "MPE" button and set "PB Range" to be equal to your synth's Pitch Bend Range:
Also, it's important to select "Same" in the Instrument track's inspector:
Here's more information about why Bitwig has separate Pitch Bend Range settings for the Controller (LinnStrument) and each plug-in synth:
a) Internally, Bitwig stores pitch bend data as real musical pitches, not simply as arbitrary Pitch Bend amounts as all other DAWs do. This provides the big advantage of permitting you to edit each note's pitch bend value in real musical pitches, which is much more musically useful. To accomplish this, it must know LinnStrument's Bend Range.
b) Some MPE synths use a different Bend Range than LinnStrument's default 24. By having different Bend Range settings for LinnStrunent and each pllug-in MPE synth, you don't need to change LinnStrument's Bend Range to match each MPE synth's specific Bend Range.
So, incoming Pitch Bend data is converted to real pitches (using the Controller's PItch Bend Range setting) and stored in the sequence as real pitches. Then on playback, the real pitches are converted back to Pitch Bend data (using the plug-in's PB Range setting) for use by the plug-in synth. Brilliant!
One last thing: here is a document explaining how to setup new sounds for MPE play from LinnStrument, created by LinnStrumentalist Thomas Poulsen.