iMPC Pro MIDI Input Details For Custom Controllers


Akai Pro released iMPC Pro, its re-imagining of the Music Production Center for the iPad, earlier this week. While iMPC Pro was heavily anticipated, many musicians have expressed disappointment over the app’s lack of MIDI support. Many would like to use the app with their existing controllers or use it like a hardware MPC, to sequence other apps or devices.

Developer Retronyms has responded at their blog by documenting the MIDI IN controls that work with iMPC Pro and providing example layouts for several controllers, including the Korg NanoPad 2, Touch OSC, Arturia Beatstep and MiniLab.

If you’d like to configure a custom controller setup, they have also provided this information on creating mappings:

For a given bank (say, bank A), the app’s pads are arranged in a Grid:

A13  A14  A15  A16
A09  A10  A11  A12
A05  A06  A07  A08
A01  A02  A03  A04

Send note on/off messages on channel 10. The notes are laid out on the Grid like this:

C#4  G4   D#4  F4
C4   B3   A3   G3
E3   D3   A#3  G#3
C#3  C3   F#3  A#6

It’s worth noting that some proprietary editors create different standard octave numbers. For example C4 traditionally is note #60. But impc pro takes note #48 for C4. However in touch osc editor and other programs note #48 translates to C2.

So to control iMPC pads, make sure you are sending the following note numbers:

49   55   51   53
48   47   45   43
40   38   46   44
37   36   42   82

Also note when you plug in some equipment, it will trigger features like mute, etc. from ch. 1 on startup.

Other features in the app can be controlled with the following note on/off messages onchannel 1:

Tap= C8
Full Level= D#3
16 Level= E3
Undo= F4
Erase= A0
Note Repeat= G3
Main= C4
Rec= G5
Overdub= C#6
Stop= A6
Play= G#6
Play Start= B6
Solo Track= D#4
Mute Track= D4
Track Down= D#1
Track Up= D1
Pad Bank= C#4

No plans for full MIDI In/Out support have been announced at this time. You can download Retronym’s layouts for third-party controllers via their site.

17 thoughts on “iMPC Pro MIDI Input Details For Custom Controllers

  1. Be warned potential buyers of impc pro! There is a bug that is causing chops in samples to move when reloading a saved song, effective destroying all your chops and your whole tune 🙁 happened to two of the four songs I’ve made on this godforsaken app…

  2. All apps should have documented MIDI support, so this is a start.

    But I’m holding off on buying this until they’ve got MIDI In/Out. MIDI In/Out is expected on any pro electronic music gear and is expected on any pro electronic music software, too.

  3. I’m holding out till they provide MIDI export on the tracks, this is a sketch pad for me and since they don’t provide stems, unless you keep one sound to each track and mute tracks and export, mute tracks and export … repeat repeat repeat … lame alert!

  4. Here’s another disappointment. I tried to use this with an iTack Dock and the sound comes out of the iPad speakers and not the headphones plugged into the dock. All other music apps I have work fine with the dock.
    Does this mean the iMPC Pro does not work with any sound ‘card’ interface plugged into the lightning connector.
    You also have to completely kill the iMPC app to get the sound back through the dock.
    I hope this is some kind of bug that can be fixed because this renders this app useless for me.
    Don’t tell me I have to use that bloated Tabletop app to make this wok properly.

  5. There is no professional midi sequencer App for the iPad that uses the MPC method of song creation, Akai is missing a huge opportunity here.

  6. I have to say I am impressed that Retronyms _are_ engaging with the community, there’s an epic thread over at forums where Dan is replying to everyone and taking the complaints, suggestions and other bits of feedback seriously. They have already submitted some bug fixes to the App Store and are working on some of the others. A better midi implementation is on the cards too apparently!

    I believe they have an opportunity here and it looks like they are taking it! Good luck to em!

    … they may get a sale from me yet 😉

    1. Not aware of this forum. I tried the url: – can you point me in the right direction? Would love to read the thread.

        1. Pretty ironic that Retronyms flat out refuses to support AudioBus in iMPC Pro, yet the AB forum has become a product support venue for their product.

  7. Honestly. I bought the app and I absolutely love it ! Aside from the obvious lack of MIDI and bugs that can be expected in a version 1.0.0, I really like it. Good work-flow. We really need a LEGIT MPC style sampling app for iPad. If they keep up on this and DO NOT cripple it on purpose to sell their other shit (tabletop etc. ) this could be epic!!!

  8. I’m really happy with this app. Buy it now at 12.99, get to know the interface but don’t get too serious with it until they squash all the bugs (there are quite a few). Still though, I’m pleased with my purchase and I look forward to the updates. (Seriously though, don’t get too serious with it or you’ll drive yourself nuts, the chops resetting is maddening and pad 16 doesn’t appear in timeline view.)

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