Working with Mixes

Edit Mixes with QS Edit Pro software. Mixes are essential for creating custom drum kits with the Alesis QSR. Learn how to enter Mix mode, select Mixes from different banks, view Mix Parameters, and audition Mix sounds. Download, upload, copy, and paste Mixes.

Before you begin

  • Review the general concepts presented in this Manual.
  • Determine your system configuration, download the software, and assemble your hardware.
  • Verify that communication between QS Edit Pro and the QSR is working properly.
  • Transfer the Dump ALL Sysex file from the QSR to QS Edit Pro.

About this task

The Programming Strategy presented in the QSR Drum Synthesizer Manual relies on Mixes. Use Mix play mode to combine Programs for each drum group for maximum flexibility. This topic introduces basic Mix mode techniques that you will use regularly.

Links to topic sections


Receive Dump ALL Sysex file

Use the QS Edit Pro Dump ALL Sysex Manager to transmit the QSR User bank data to your computer before working in QS Edit Pro. This will synchronize QS Edit Pro and the QSR and help ensure that the Programs and Mixes shown in the User bank match the actual data in the QSR.

  1. Refer to the Receive Dump ALL Sysex topic and follow the instructions to initiate transmission of the SYSEX file.

Switching to Mix mode

  1. Click QS Mode > Mix Mode.
    Tip: You can also use the F6 key or the Switch to Mix button Switch to Mix button in QS Edit Pro to enter Mix mode.
  2. Verify that QS Edit Pro displays the Mix Mode window shown below. You may see a different Mix name and the contents may differ. Your system will show details for the current Mix in use.
    QS Edit Pro Mix mode screen

  3. Verify that the QSR LCD display shows GLOBAL Edit/MIDI MixSl:CH10
    Attention: QS Edit Pro sets the MIDI Mix Select parameter under Global Settings each time you use the software to switch between Program play mode and Mix play mode. That is why the Global Settings page is shown on the QSR front panel LCD display after changing modes.

Changing the Mix

  1. Click Mix > SELECT using the dropdown menus or click the Select button to open the Mix Select window.
    QS Edit Pro Mix Select window

    Note: QS Edit Pro opens the Mix Select window showing the Mixes in the currently selected bank. User, Preset, General MIDI, and Card banks can be viewed by clicking on the tabs at the top of the window.
    Tip: The factory User bank Mix contents can be seen in the screen shot above. If your QSR User bank has been modified you will see different Mix names. If you want to restore the factory User bank contents, download the zip file using the link below. You can then use QS Dump ALL Sysex Manager to transmit the data to the User bank.
  2. Change the QSR Mix by clicking a Mix name in the QS Edit Pro Mix Select window.
  3. Verify that the Mix name selected in QS Edit Pro matches the Mix name displayed on the QSR front panel LCD display. If the Mix names match, close the Mix Select window.
    Trouble: You may have to click away from the current Mix number and then reselect the Mix name to get the QSR to respond.

Auditioning Mixes

  1. Use the Virtual Keyboard at the bottom of the QS Edit Pro window to play sounds in Mix mode.
    Attention: The Virtual Keyboard behaves differently in Mix play mode than in Program play mode. The Virtual Keyboard can play sounds using only one MIDI channel at a time. In Program play mode, only one MIDI channel is used and the MIDI Channel slider is set to match the MIDI channel selected on the QSR front panel. But in Mix play mode, the Virtual Keyboard can be used with any of the 16 Mix channels. The MIDI Channel slider setting determines which Mix channel's Program will receive the Note On commands and, therefore, which Program sound will be played.

    QS Edit Pro MIDI channel slider

    Note: The built-in QSR Mixes often layer Programs using the Mix Group function (available on the Global Settings dialogue box, under the MIDI > Global Settings dropdown menu). If you set the Mix Group to a MIDI channel (one that is not already enabled in the Mix) and play notes on the Virtual Keyboard using the same channel, the QSR will play the layered Mix sound using the grouped Mix channels.

    QS Edit Pro Global Settings Menu, Mix Group function

  2. Set the MIDI Channel slider to Ch. 1 to hear the sounds from the Program on Mix channel 1.
  3. Vary the setting of the MIDI Channel slider to audition each Mix channel Program. If you have set a Mix Group channel then that channel will play any Programs assigned to the Mix Group.

Viewing Mix parameters

  1. Familiarize yourself with the QS Edit Pro Mix Mode window.
    The figure below shows the 16 Program layers for the "Multitmbrl" Mix (the first Mix in the default User bank). Click the MIDI Channel Number buttons along the top or click on Program names in the channel list to highlight one of the Programs. The Program sound layers will display below the Program listing. The window in the figure below has been stretched to show the sound layers for the Program on the selected MIDI channel.
    QS Edit Pro Mix mode screen, expanded to show selected Program sound layers
    The "Multitmbrl" Mix is intended for use with a sequencer or multiple MIDI controllers. The QS Edit Pro window shows that each MIDI channel uses a different Program, emulating different instruments. The MIDI channel instrument assignments loosely follow the General MIDI standard. In this case, Channel 1 uses a piano Program and Channel 10 uses a drum kit Program, per the General MIDI standard.
    Refer to the QS Edit Pro tutorials and the QSR Reference Manual for more information about the Mix Mode window functions.
  2. Click the grey sound layer button labeled 1 at the bottom of the window to open the Sound Editor window.
    The Program sound layer editing functions for the selected Mix channel can be directly accessed from the Mix Mode window.
  3. Close the Sound Editor window after experimenting with the available functions.

Managing Mixes

  1. Open the Mix dropdown menu to access options for editing Mixes, transferring Mixes between the QSR and your computer, and saving Mixes to disk.
  2. Click the Select button to open the Mix Select window.
    QS Edit Pro Mix Select window, Preset1 contents

  3. Click the Preset 1 tab, then click to select the "ZenPiano" Mix. Close the window.
    Verify that the QSR LCD display shows "ZenPiano" and "Bank: Preset 1".
    Trouble: You might have to click away from Mix channel 000 and reselect that Mix in the Mix Select window for the QSR to respond.
  4. Click Mix > Copy: ZenPiano.
    QS Edit Pro Mix menu

    This copies the Mix settings to the clipboard so you can paste the Mix into a User bank Mix channel, similar to the way you copy and paste Programs.
  5. Click the Select button to open the Mix Select window.
  6. Click the User Bn (User bank) tab, then select the Mix in User bank Program channel 000. The QSR display should show Mix number 000 and "BANK: USER".
  7. Click Mix > Paste ZenPiano. You will see the QSR briefly receiving data.
  8. After pasting the "ZenPiano" Mix, the QSR display will show the "ZenPiano" program name in channel 000. But the writing function is not yet complete. After using QS Edit Pro to paste the Mix (which places it into an edit buffer in the QSR), press the STOREbutton twice to write the Mix to non-volatile memory. Using this method of moving a Preset Mix to the User bank allows you to edit the Mix or save it to disk. You cannot edit Mixes in the Preset banks.

Mix Librarian

  1. Click on Mix > Mix Library to open the Mix Librarian window shown below.
    QS Edit Pro Mix Librarian window

    You can use the Mix Librarian window to manage QS Mix bank files. However, Sound Tower does not provide documentation for the Mix Librarian window. The behavior of this window causes confusion. For example, files can be added to the librarian but it appears removing them may not be possible.
    You can open the SYSEX files from QS-4 and QS-7/8 series synthesizers provided by Sound Tower, or open your own bank data.
  2. Close the Mix Librarian window.