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M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by lqbert on 2011-09-23 13:54:31.7220

I discovered that you can control Exp. pedal functions via MIDI CC#1 and CC#2 sent to the M13... however, while I was testing this by sending CC#1 to the M13 originating from Ableton Live (I don't have a foot controller yet), I noticed that if I tried to manually (or via MIDI) switch an FX on/off or manually switch scenes (from the actual M13 switches), the unit didn't respond.  Also, I noticed that the parameters that are mapped to expression pedals takes a long time to react to the CC#1 of CC#2.  When I stop sending CC#1 or 2 to the unit, the modulations continue for  a moment (I'm starting and stopping clips in Ableton Live that send the CC values). 

What basically looks like is happening is that there is a huge delay (3-5 sec) between when I send the CC value and when it is actually read and acted upon. 

Any ideas???


Re: RE: M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by darealagentp on 2011-09-27 09:58:10.7920

My first reaction is to know the physical connections of your system setup: primarily in the pathway from computer to MIDI Input of the M13.


  1. What is your MIDI I/O device?
  2. Is this device connected to a direct USB port on the host computer or is it running through a hub? If it is going through a USB hub, please use a direct port and re-test. Hubs are notorious for restricting data bandwidth... they're OK for typing keyboards and external mouse/pointing devices, but for audio and MIDI devices, most manufacturers like ourselves do not support hub connections.
  3. Try a different USB port than the current one for your MIDI I/O device. Try a different cable, too just to be safe.
  4. Make sure you have the most current MIDI I/O USB device driver installed on your OS.
  5. Try a different MIDI cable, too.


Let's get those points investigated first, since it's really crucial to understand that this is the physical connect point between Ableton Live's MIDI output data to the M13 as receiving device. We should at least eliminate these as potential points of data blockage first.

Re: RE: M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by Line6david on 2011-09-30 15:58:43.4090


It has been at least 48 hours since we've heard from you. We're going to assume your question has been answered and close this support ticket. If you feel your question(s) have not been answered, or, if you have further questions, please feel free to re-open a support thread within our support community and we will answer your questions accordingly. Thanks!

Line 6 Support

Re: RE: M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by Anse on 2011-10-02 13:57:45.9790


Most of the Line 6 datbase is sickened by the rote reply "It's been 45 hours etc...".

I once again call BS,because you are not providing customer service,you are deleting inconvienient posts that are for the most part totally relevant.Goodness Gracious,Line 6 promoted web access as a selling point years ago ,and now we suffer this kind of treatment to the consumer? Let's agree to close topics after 48 DAYS. Is the company still owned by United States citizens?If so,they should realize short changing a consumer with a problem is a big no-no.

If you wish to defend this type of response,please do not address me directly.Defend yourselves to the Better Business Bureau.

Re: RE: M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by lqbert on 2011-10-27 19:11:38.0960

I have to agree... 48 hours and done??? Kinda weak... Anyway, I have a theory about the issue.  I believe the m13 is receiving all the cc change data and it just can't react fast enough... Like it records all the data n a buffer but the m13 can't keep up with all the changes real time.  I also observed this issue being cOntinually worse as an exp pedal was assigned to additional fx units (1-4)

Oh, my midi chain is: computer to Saffire pro 26io via FireWire, and from ther on to the m13 via straight midi cable.  It's not the saffire because I tested going out of it and back into the midi input of it with no Issue...

I Haven't tested a straight exp pedal so I dOnt know if this is a midi only issue or what.

Any new thoughts, brilliant people?!?!?

Re: RE: M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by phil_m on 2011-10-28 06:22:48.9720

No one is deleting anything or short-changing anyone. All the 48 hours message is doing saying that the support ticket is closed. If someone posts a question, and is asked some follow-up questions, it's not unreasonable to expect answers to those questions in some reasonable amount of time. If they do need further support, all they have to do start a new thread or make a call.

Re: RE: M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by phil_m on 2011-10-28 06:25:56.5130

To me it sounds like this is probably an issue with buffered MIDI data or something. I've controlled the M13 expression controls via MIDI, and I've not noticed a lag. There's also no lag if you're using an analog expression pedal. So I can't say what the best solution to the problem is. It could be something with the transmission of MIDI data over firewire.

Re: RE: M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by lenoir on 2011-10-30 17:03:19.2780

This is a very well known and still not corrected MIDI problem on the M13. Well, one among others I mean. As we MIDI users have been waiting for a couple of years now for a fix that doesn't come, I guess it can't be adressed in any way. A device limitation, certainly. An analog expression pedal will work pretty nicely though, so my advice is that you'd better do just as everyone else and not include your M13 in any complex MIDI chain using anything else than Program Changes. The thing is engineered to be hooked up on a pedalboard straigh into a tube amp, controled with two analog pedal. Period.

Re: RE: M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by lqbert on 2011-11-03 20:03:34.5000

Thanks for clarification regarding the 48 hour issue.  It does sound like some sort of buffering issue to me, as well.... like the M13 captures all the MIDI data coming into it, but it just takes it's sweet time spitting it out to the parameters the MIDI data is set to control.  I sincerely hope the brilliant programmers at Line6 will decide to take on this challenge to "fix" this issue.   As I mentioned above, the more FX (1-4) that the pedal is controlling at once, the worse the delay.

Anyway.... the horse is dead enough for now.... my personal workaround: 

I have not used an analog pedal straight into the M13 yet, as I don't currently own one.  I'm looking into getting a Mission Engineering pedal as well as a retro-fit kit from them to turn an old wah into an expression pedal -- giving me 2 exp pedals on my board (plus a crybaby).  I am no longer planning to rack mount my M13, nor purchase a MIDI foot controller (something about times being tough).  Now for the cool part... I'm making my own super condensed MIDI foot controller out of my 3 button Marshall footswitch (I'm kind of a geek like that)....

What it will do: 

Sitting in front of my M13, it will give me 4 "presets" per M13 scene (any one button on (3), or no buttons on (1) equals 4 presets).  Each preset will essentially simultaneously activate (or deactivate) any effect in each column.  Whenever I change scenes on the M13, my little MIDI controller will sense that (MIDI out on the M13 to MIDI in on my controller) and my 3 buttons will now activate the presets programmed for the newly selected scene!  Basically each time a button on my controller is pressed, 4 CC messages are sent to the M13 corresponding with the effects that should be activated/deactivated.... and yes, I DO even notice a little lag when 4 new effects are activated at one time via this method .... but it's fast enough for just changing a preset.

As well as controlling my M13, the controller will have 3 relays in it that will control my amp channels/effects PER preset!  Yes, a preset will be able to channel switch my amp! 

It will have 3 modes: 

1) Preset mode (described above),

2) Edit mode (to program the preset), and

3) "Classic" mode (where it will just control the amp like it did before I went all Robo-Cop on the pedal to make it do all this)

The Guts:

- Replace the latching buttons with momentary ones

- Replace the single color LEDs with bi-color ones to give me 3 color possibilities for the 3 modes

- The brain is an Atmega328 microcontroller with the Arduino bootloader (see

- 4 little "circuits" (well 5 if you count the Atmega):  MIDI Input, MIDI Output, 5V power regulator, and relay control. 

Challenges/Progress thus far:

- Making it fit in the original casing:  I have 4 little strip boards build (see Vero Board) and the relays will be mounted by themselves (the don't really fit on a standard .1" spacing strip board.  It all fits!

- Never built MIDI circuits before, used a bare bones Atmega, nor messed with relays:  successfully built and tested both MIDI in and out circuits, Atmega board, and 5V regulator board.... relay board built, but not yet tested. 

I haven't controlled the amp via the relays yet, but if I figured out (and I believe I have) how the basic pedal worked, the relays should be able to do the same job the physical switched did before.

I've come up with a preset edit process that should be fairly straight forward to program once you get your scenes setup and be totally programmable via pressing buttons on the M13 and the controller. 

I kind of envision one scene being for one song, and you can have 4 different configurations of that scene accessible via a single click of a foot switch.

I've never made an actual youtube vld of any quality, but if this works out, it may justfiy putting something together. 

Please let me know how insane you all think I am for doing this... it's been fun making it all work, if nothing else!  btw, it will be able to be powered (hopefully) by something like a Pedal Power.

Re: RE: M13 MIDI control of expression pedal function lag / latency / delay issue (???)
by lqbert on 2011-11-18 13:11:32.7690

Man, if I had low self esteem, I may be bummed.... I know that was taking a bit of the geeky route, but I thought I'd get something... in other words... BUMP.

what it looks like, so far:


Gonna be assembling probably this weekend... I just have to choose the right resistors for the LEDs to be a good brightness and not eat up too much current:

The information above may not be current, and you should direct questions to the current forum or review the manual.