Relative Mode MIDI encoders

Hello all,

Is it possible to use relative mode MIDI encoders in VCV Rack? If not, might it be possible in the future?

Please see: for details.

I have an old Doepfer knob box with endless encoders, and I’ve used it successfully with a bunch of programs, because they understand relative encoders. In fact Ableton Live usually autodetects it when you do MIDI learn.

I haven’t seen what it does if I use it as a MIDI CC source in Rack.

I’ve used my BCR-2000 successfully with Rack and I hope the encoder experience is fairly uniform because I just ordered a MIDI Fighter Twister.

Does the BCR-2000 send relative mode midi CC?

VCV Rack needs to send midi out info to controler in order to use relative mode, doesn’t it? But there is no midi out yet (I hope for yet…)

I don’t even know what “relative mode midi” means, but the BCR-2000 has endless encoders, not pots.

I’ve selling it, by the way, if anyone is interested.

Yes there would have two way communication.

@Jon, if a parameter has a value of 0 - 7 (count 0 as a digit) it has to divide the steps 0-127. 128 / 8 = 16 so every 16 steps on an encoder would change to a whole number on the parameter (1-16 would be the values up to the whole number 1 on the encoder 16 - 32, 2 and so on…) The relative part is the communication of the parameter to the encoder, so when the param is set to 3 the midi encoder would have to be set to 48 to correspond to the parameter. Non relative would be, if you closed the program moved the encoder and opened back up the program you would get a jump in the parameter as it changes to the encoders position.

TLDR; If a program uses relative it sends the parameter value to the encoder, these are usually infinite encoders.

“Non relative would be, if you closed the program moved the encoder and opened back up the program you would get a jump in the parameter as it changes to the encoders position.”

In this case, the BCR-2000’s encoders are non-relative, because, no, upon reopening Rack, they do not jump back to their previous positions. That bit is annoying. Maybe I’ll get lucky with the MIDI Fighter Twister. Maybe it’s encoders will be relative.

One nice use case for using relative mode encoders: your device will have a certain # of encoders, if it then also allows you to switch MIDI channels on the fly, well now you will have 16x the # of encoders! This works with absolute mode, but most midi controllers will not store the absolute values per channel so you’ll get parameter jumps. Something like the Elektron Model:Samples does work though as it has its own OS which remembers values per track/channel.

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Now that I think about it, I have used an app from Mountain Utilities to customize the BCR-2000. I now recall the options for setting the encoders as either relative or absolute. I’ll have to go back and take a look at that.

The twister utility has options for both relative (3FH/41H) and non relative. cv mapping works well inside of Rack but midi mapping is still a bit unstable for my tastes. One thing to note is that you will need 4 midi-cv instances if you want to map all 4 banks of encoders to things in your patch.

What is the twister utility?

I should have said the Midi Fighter utility. It is the software for configuring Midi Fighters such as the 3D, Twister, etc.

oh, okay :+1:

There would have to be two way communication, like a midi protocol for the software to see parameters. Probably similar to Nektar mappings which rely on the host software to export / show mappable parameter controls to the control software which then talks back to the host software through the controller.