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Drive animation channels with information from MIDI files.


2001 - 2002

MIDIChannel is a channel handelr plug-in for Lightwave 6.0 or greater. It allows you to drive animation channels with the information from a MIDI file. This plug-in requires Lightwave 6.0 or greater.

Click here to download MIDIChannel (118 KB)


To install MIDIChannel, just follow these steps:

  • If any copies of Layout are running, quit them now.
  • Create a new directory in your Lightwave Plugins directory called TMPro and copy MIDIChannel.p into it.
  • Load Layout
  • Select Add Plug-ins.
  • Find and add MIDIChannel.p. Layout should report that one plug-in has been added.
  • Quit Layout. This will update your Lightwave config and ensure that everything works properly.
  • The next time you run Layout, you can launch the MIDIChannel plug-in from the Modifiers tab of the Graph Editor. Please refer to your Lightwave documentation for more information.


MIDI Channel allows you to use the information from a MIDI file to drive your animation. Upon applying MIDI Channel to a channel in Layout's Graph Editor and double-clicking it's entry, it will open an interface similar to the one above. All of the controls will be ghosted until you select a MIDI file via the MIDI Filebutton.

After loading a MIDI file, the you will want to pick a Track and a Channel. There can be any number of tracks in a MIDI file, and up to 16 channels per track.MIDI Channel supports all Format 0, 1 and 2 MIDI file formats. Note that first track of Format 1 MIDI files is a special tempo track and does not contain any note information.


The Parameter pop-up determines the kind of data this channel will handle. This can be either Note On/Off events or Note Velocity (how quickly the note was pressed or released). MIDI notes and velocities have a range of 0 to 127. Normally, notes can overloap in a MIDI file, but this is impossible in an animation channel, which can only display a single value at a time. Thus MIDI Channel displays only the most recently "On" note at a particular time, skipping "Off" events if there are any notes still playing. You can adjust the range of notes using other options described below to limit this effect.

Start Time shifts the start time of the MIDI file in a similar manner to how you can shift the start time of imagse sequences in the Image Editor. If set to one second, the MIDI file won't start the Layout time is at one second.

Value Offset allows you to shift the values returned by MIDI Channel. This occurs after Value Scale has been applied. Note that if this plug-in is applied to a rotation channel, it returns values in radians, not degrees. There are 57.295 radians (180/pi) per degree, should you want to do the conversion.

Value Scale allows you to scale the values returned by MIDI Channel. The scale factor is applied before Value Offset.

If Additive is checked, the values returned by MIDI Channel are added to the existing channel's values. If disabled, then the plug-in will replace the original data.

Low Note and High Note allow you to narrow the range of the notes that the plug-in will output to the aniamtion channel. You can use this to create a player piano by limited the Low and High range to the same value, incrementing it for each successive key on the keyboard.

Parameter Shift acts just like Value Offset, but occurs before Value Scale.

Parameter Off Level allows you to set the "off", meaning the value the graph will have when no notes are playing.

Parameter Decay lets you adjust how long it takes for a note to die out after the key has been released (ie: a "Note Off" event has occured).

Parameter On Ease lets you adjust how long it takes for a note to go from an off state to a completely on state, acting as a ramping effect leading up to the "Note On" event at the end of the ramp.

The About button gives you some information about the plug-in.

Revision History

  • 04-22-01
    - First public release