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MidiPiano: Freeware Midi Piano Player, Synth And More

| June 12, 2007 | 10 Replies

midi piano

I’ve recently come across a freeware midi piano player that is more interesting and useful than some of the others I’ve used in the past.  This one is worth the download. MidiPiano is Windows Freeware.  It allows you to open any midi file and watch its keyboard “play” the keys.  You may assign any of the midi channels to the left or right hand to view individual parts  and  mute unwanted tracks/channels depending on your needs or focus with this visual, virtual keyboard

This software also allows you to use the PC keyboard as a music keyboardl. With it, you may assign any of the 128 General Midi Sounds to the PC keys for listeining and playback.  Additionally, you may also record a MIDI file of what you play using the software and playback or save it.

This software will also allow you to plug any midi input device(s) into the software and have itss output sent to any installed midi devices in your computer.  For instance, if you have a midi keyboard (usb, ekeys, etc.) that does not generate its own sounds, you can use this to play your PC’s internal soundcard sounds using the midi keyboard as an input.

There are also a number of cool plugins that are included with the software such as a guitar tuner, metronome and midi event monitor (a device to “see” the midi code list in realtime).  This software is fairly new and easy to use. I hope it continues to be supported as there is a real need for updated freeware such as this.

The software can be found here:
http://midipiano.googlepages.com/

Find it here: (update 6/2011)

http://code.google.com/p/virtualpiano/

At the author’s site, open source code can be found for use in developing third party plugins for this software.  There is also a link for donations if you like the software.

This software has a number of uses for music teachers; especially those integrating technology into their courses.

If you have/use any other freeware piano programs like this for Mac or Linux, please let us know!  If you already are using something like this in class or find this useful please share your experiences with us as well! :)

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Category: Freeware, Music Education, Music Technology

About the Author ()

Joseph M. Pisano, Ph.D. is the creator of many education websites, lecturer, clinician, trumpeter, and conductor. He is currently the Associate Chair of Music and Fine Arts at Grove City College, PA and the Vice President of TI:ME. He also writes for DCI Magazine, In-Tune Monthly and has contributed hundreds of articles to various publications. Find out more at his website jpisano.com.
  • http://www.2kbloggers.com Elaine

    your blog has been added to 2k bloggers :)

  • Kristi

    How long does it take to the download this and what is the benefit of having the students be able to play the piano using a computer? How have you used this?

  • http://www.mustech.net J. Pisano

    Kristi,

    Thanks for writing. The download speed will vary according to your connection as with any software download, it took me 4 seconds. The file is 1.2 meg (Less than the size of a 1.44 floppy) zipped. Check the link and download it, it won’t take very long even with dial-up.

    This software is very useful. For one, many teachers do not have a midi lab or keyboard lab. This software will work on any computer and allow students to work/explore with melody/pitches/solfeggio, etc. with their computer keyboards. However, one of intentions with software like this is to be able to see a midi file being played with a visual representation of a keyboard. This software allows you to assign midi channels to hands for viewing multiple parts within the midi file.

    As I stated earlier, it will also work with a non-local sound controller (sound generating) keyboard…that is: a keyboard that is a midi controller without its own sounds. It will play the computer’s sounds card as a sound generating source when the midi keys are pressed (latency issues aside… this reminds me to write an article about ASIO drivers…). This effectively will give you a sounding music keyboard from a simple midi controller keyboard device. If you are in this situation, it could prove extremely useful.

    Personally, I use this and a couple of other very similiar software programs to explain, visually, concepts like General Midi and the first 128 GM sounds. I also use this to have the students explore the windows/audio interface with midi devices, channels, basic midi event list viewing, etc. This is the type of program I use at the very start of my intro to midi chapters in class.

    I also use software like this to demonstrate some of the uses of standard midi files. For instance, I have my students download a free midi file from the Classical Archives (search this site for an article about it) and we import that file and manipulate it with a variety of programs, this program is just one of them.

    Many people use programs like this as an advanced midi player… Rather than have a media player play it (with no related visual), they use this and get the added advantage of seeing the keys move with the music. Simple, but effective (pretty cool for visualizing fugues).

    I keep this particular program on my laptop and when I am working on a composition and did not bring my usb music keyboard with me, it is very handy. Another great thing about this software is that any of your students may have a copy of it and use it as it is free. The large majority of the programs I write about on this particular site are free.

    There are lots of other uses, but this should give you a couple of starter ideas. What are you trying to accomplish with a program like this? Maybe I can point you in a different direction?

    Regards,

    J. Pisano

  • Marc

    We would like to use a midi keyboard (that doesn’t make sounds on it’s own) to practice classical piano music. It sounds like this software would allow us to do that.

    You say that you have used other freeware midi piano players. Could you give the names of some of them? Searching the web, the only other possible one I found was MidiRunner.

    Thanks.

  • Alan Vercetti

    would this work with sony acid pro?

  • http://www.mustech.net Joseph Pisano

    Marc,

    It will do what you want by accessing your midi synth card, but you may have latency issues. If you are using the Roland Virtual Sound Canvas, you can get it down to a barely perceptable dealy. If you have a fast computer and/or a good sound card, you may not notice any issues when doing this simply by choosing the MS wavetable. There are some ways around this but they are complicated. I am planning on doing a midi latency article some time this summer… stay tuned.

    For practicing though, I would highly reccomend that you consider a sound module for this application. Edirol has a number of fairly inexpensive options.

    PS. You can also search for virtualpiano, it’s another freeware piano program. I used that one before I found MidiPiano. I also purchased a shareware copy of KB Piano, it’s a little more invovled that the ones, I have listed here.

    Regards,

    J. Pisano

  • http://www.mustech.net Joseph Pisano

    Alan,

    I don’t have sony acid pro, but my guess is you would have to use a virtual midi cable like MIDI YOKE to pull that off using this software. http://www.midiox.com

    Regards,

    J. PIsano

  • george

    I found that v1.85 released last night.

  • http://www.mustech.net Joseph Pisano

    George,

    Thanks for the update! I’ll check it out. I know we have been sending about 15-20 people a day to him since the post. Perhaps he’s noticed the influx of interest!

    J. Pisano

  • R Miller

    I’m looking for a midi recorder/editor/player that operates independently of tempo, measures, beat counts, or any kind of quantizing scheme. Does such freeware exist?

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