November 12, 2020
Wireless MIDI is here, and it works!
There is a small company in Japan called CME that recently developed a novel idea… wireless MIDI over bluetooth…WIDI !
Now, traditionally, Bluetooth technology was not all that great. Oh, sure, it worked well connecting the audio of your earpiece to your cell phone, or carry the audio from your iPod to a small external speaker, but no “serious” musician would consider using BT technology in a music instrument… or would they?
BT was a technology with some very strong limitations:
1 – It had a high level of latency
2 – It had short range
3 – It was still fairly expensive
Well, today that latency is now much improved, and prices dropped a lot… even more so if you participate in a pre-release that let’s you make a purchase at 50% of retail. That alone made it interesting enough for me to want to try it out… along with a promise from the manufacturer that latency would not be a factor in my case.
Cool… sign me up… for 6 units, or the equivalent of 3 complete MIDI cables!
After that, the waiting started and more info was released, and they sounded pretty good!
The day arrives, I get a package in the mail, and there they are… but there are no instructions? OK, MIDI is not rocket science and the one little obvious thing is that there are 2 plugs (MIDI in and out) per package and they connect with a small connector. Doesn’t sound too hard.
Insert the MIDI in and MIDI out dongles in to the proper connectors in the 8X and do the same on the BK-7m, but how do I know that they’re connected? Oh wait, if I turn on the BK-7m first, when there is communication between the BK and the 8X, the BK will want to run the config wizard… ok, the BK is turned on, then the 8X…
Heck, before the 8X is even finished booting, the units are not only connected and talking, but the 8X is seen by the BK and the config wizard boots!
OK, it seriously cannot get any easier than this, truly the definition of “plug and play”!
The WIDI Master takes its power from the MIDI socket of the accordion and just… works, and having ONE CABLE LESS is the big plus in this case!