Akai APC40. Is it possible to make the little rectangle buttons' LEDs blink?
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  1. #1
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    Default Akai APC40. Is it possible to make the little rectangle buttons' LEDs blink?

    I'm mapping my Akai APC40 small rectangular buttons to FX unit on/off buttons. Ideally, i'd like them to stay lit green when off and blink green when on.

    As far as I can tell, these small rectangular buttons with the single LED under them, cannot receive a midi message other than on or off, so I am currently able to only light the button when on and leave it unlit when off (or just leave on all the time).

    Is there any way to make this behavior happen natively in Traktor without BOMES?

  2. #2
    Tech Guru completej's Avatar
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    if so, i havent seen it.
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    You could do this in Traktor alone by using the beat counter output (sorry, I don't remember what it's called - I'm not in front of my dj computer). But basically there's an output that will flash leds in fractions of the deck tempo, so using a few modifiers and some of those output commands you could let them be active when the fx unit is on, and go back to solid (via modifier) when they're off. This could eat up a ton of modifiers though...

    EDIT: The output command I was referring to is called "beat phase monitor", i think.
    Last edited by Zac Kyoti; 10-14-2010 at 08:46 PM.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zac Kyoti View Post
    You could do this in Traktor alone by using the beat counter output (sorry, I don't remember what it's called - I'm not in front of my dj computer). But basically there's an output that will flash leds in fractions of the deck tempo, so using a few modifiers and some of those output commands you could let them be active when the fx unit is on, and go back to solid (via modifier) when they're off. This could eat up a ton of modifiers though...
    Thanks, i'll give this a try.

    I'm already using a different Modifier for Effect On 1, 2, and 3 to get the LED to toggle on and off depending if the FX unit is on or off.

    Is there another way to just light the LED on and off without using all these Modifiers? Because using modifiers as a toggle is the only way I know to get the LED to turn off. I am using my APC40 in dumb mode.

  5. #5
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    It depends. In dumb mode the APC40 top layer of device control section buttons act natively as toggles, while the bottom send momentary messages. It also depends whether your controls are doing double duty (like sometimes a row operates on one fx unit, and at other times a different one). If you had a modifier that just defines an "fx bank" as being active, you could potentially have say, the same four buttons controlling the four fx units in Traktor depending on which you've chosen, and just use regular output commands, just with the condition of the modifier as part of the command. That would be one modifier only, in four different states (or two, if you only use two fx units).

    Example: pick four buttons or just one that you'll cycle with, and set each to make M1 a value. Each button or cycle step just changes the value. 0 to 3 would work fine. Pick the four buttons you'll use for the fx unit, and set up commands (in and out) such that each complete group only responds when it's particular modifier condition is met. Fx unit 1 has M1=0, fx unit 2 has M1=1, and so on. Play around with the command "Effect Is On", in conjunction with that "beat phase monitor" command too. You might be able to use this to get your "flashing when on only" behavior. Try with the modifier scheme I described above, you might be able to nail this down using only one or two modifiers, depending on your set-up.

    EDIT: for anyone who follows this stuff, "Dumb Mode" is the "APC has no default button behaviors" mode. When referring to the button behavior at the top of the post, I should have referred to it as "Regular, or Banks" mode. Sorry for the confusion.
    Last edited by Zac Kyoti; 10-15-2010 at 04:15 AM.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zac Kyoti View Post
    It depends. In dumb mode the APC40 top layer of device control section buttons act natively as toggles, while the bottom send momentary messages. It also depends whether your controls are doing double duty (like sometimes a row operates on one fx unit, and at other times a different one). If you had a modifier that just defines an "fx bank" as being active, you could potentially have say, the same four buttons controlling the four fx units in Traktor depending on which you've chosen, and just use regular output commands, just with the condition of the modifier as part of the command. That would be one modifier only, in four different states (or two, if you only use two fx units).

    Example: pick four buttons or just one that you'll cycle with, and set each to make M1 a value. Each button or cycle step just changes the value. 0 to 3 would work fine. Pick the four buttons you'll use for the fx unit, and set up commands (in and out) such that each complete group only responds when it's particular modifier condition is met. Fx unit 1 has M1=0, fx unit 2 has M1=1, and so on. Play around with the command "Effect Is On", in conjunction with that "beat phase monitor" command too. You might be able to use this to get your "flashing when on only" behavior. Try with the modifier scheme I described above, you might be able to nail this down using only one or two modifiers, depending on your set-up.
    From what I can tell, when you first turn the APC40 on, it goes by default into some type of Ableton mode. This is when I see the default button behavior of toggle and hold actions. When I put it in dumb mode, by opening and closing Ableton Live, this puts it into dumb mode (turns off all the lights). This way when you send a light on command, the light stays on until you tell it to turn off.

    Zac, you knew this, you pretty much taught me this!


    Anyway, i'm trying to control the LED behavior of the FX within the FX1 chained bank in my case.

    From what I can tell, I can't use a single modifier because I want to be able to turn on Effect 1, Effect 2, and Effect 3 at different times and a lot of times simultaneously.

    So i'm not sure how I can use this one modifier in different modes.

    What am I missing here?

    Edit: I just figured out we may be talking about different rectangular buttons here. I'm talking about the clear hard rectangular buttons on the right side underneath the knobs with the single green LED.
    Last edited by JCribb; 10-14-2010 at 10:02 PM.

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    Mispost
    Last edited by Zac Kyoti; 10-15-2010 at 04:08 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCribb View Post
    Zac, you knew this
    My bad, dude. I was thinking about the wrong mode. It shouldn't really matter in this case which mode you're in though anyway. I'm with ya, we were thinking of the same buttons.

    So my question is why do you need the modifiers for your individual chained fx? If you have outputs mapped to the APC (ex "effect 1 on", "effect 2 on", etc) shouldn't that take care of the led behavior? The modifier thing I was suggesting was if you wanted to be using the same buttons for multiple fx units, switching between?

    Or is the problem that if you do it that way, they don't turn off when you hit it the second time? I need a reminder, its hard to talk about this stuff when I'm not right in front of the gear, lol!
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zac Kyoti View Post
    Or is the problem that if you do it that way, they don't turn off when you hit it the second time? I need a reminder, its hard to talk about this stuff when I'm not right in front of the gear, lol!
    Exactly this (i'm at work too, so i'll do my best to explain!).

    I am using these Effect On buttons as toggles.

    My whole intention is to have them light green when off and then flash when the particular chained effect is on. Like a Pioneer DJM-XXXX mixer does with it's Effect button.

    The LEDs on these buttons turn on fine when I hit them for the ON command the first time, using the LED OUT command on it. They just don't turn off automatically when I toggle it off. Therefore, I have to send a LED off command to get it to turn off. The only way I know to make this happen, since i'm using these Effect On buttons as toggles, is to use a separate Modifier on each Effect On button which acts as a toggle, i.e, when Modifier = 1 set to 0 and when Modifier = 0 set to 1. This is the only way I know to turn the LED off. And I hate this because this method leaves the LEDs on these buttons in unknown states when something gets out of sync. Not ideal at all.

    Is there another way to do this that I am missing?

  10. #10
    Tech Guru sarasin's Avatar
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    I want to do something similar.....but just get the little button to light up when engaged and be off when disengaged.

    Using them for kill switches and need it to show me when its on or off.

    Simple enough i guess.....just not sure about when output to use and what the values need to be.

    Sorry to semi hijack.
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