Behringer has shared plans for a new range of MIDI host devices (MIDI Host 6), turning USB data into 5-pin MIDI signals.
Last year, Behringer announced a variety of small portable Volca-like synthesizers. Users report that the first units of the Pro VS Mini and JT-4000 are currently being delivered.
Both synths use USB-C for MIDI and power. The JT-4000, in particular, has no MIDI sockets, just this single USB-C socket. It is not very advantageous as you need to connect it to a computer to get both data and power. Today, Behringer is showing plans for new MIDI interfaces with host functionality that simplifies the workflow of these mini-synths.
MIDI interfaces with USB host functionality are rather rare on the market. There are boxes from iConnectivity, or Retrokits RK-006 doing USB host. Especially with the large number of recent portable synthesizers, more MIDI interfaces with hosting are very welcome. One advantage of MIDI host is the connection simplicity. It only requires a USB cable.
The MIDI host functionality inside a synth allows you to connect a USB/MIDI connector just with the USB cable. No big 5-pin DIN MIDI sockets are required. Behringer is planning new interfaces that bring classic MIDI back to these portable synths via a breakout box.
Behringer MIDI Host
They are currently planning to develop two new space-saving USB-MIDI host devices converting USB into 5-pin MIDI signals.
The first MIDI host version is a single-channel cubic version. On one, it has two USB-C ports (host, power) for connecting your synth, and on the other side, classic 5-pin MIDI in and out.
Number two is a 6-channel version. It gives you six channels with dedicated USB-C host port inputs and MIDI in/out sockets. So for each channel, you have a USB-C host port and two MIDI sockets. The large version takes power from a power supply input. The smaller one is directly from the USB port
A good idea for a product. Unfortunately, USB-C host devices are rather rare on the market. This would bring some movement into the topic. This in an affordable classic MIDI interface would also be interesting where you have all the MIDI functionality plus several USB-A or C hosts.
According to Behringer, they could offer them for $19 for the 1-channel and $49 for the 6-channel version.
More information here: Behringer
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