Many of the patches that I use live with Omnisphere are pads or other sounds for which the sustain pedal is not a factor.  I recently set up a sound, however that I wanted the sustain pedal to be active, but I couldn’t sort it out at first.  This post will explain what I found out through experimentation.

My VAX77 is set to talk to Mainstage on ch16.  This is the recommendation and default behavior when in “Host Mode”.  This causes no end of complications in a world that assumes MIDI ch1 is where the action is. I seem to always find new places that this assumption rears its head.

Inside Omnisphere, I set my patch to respond to ch 16, and it played back fine, but the sustain pedal would not work.  Mainstage’s MIDI monitor showed the sustain pedal coming in on Ch 16, as expected.  If I set Omnisphere to “learn” a new MIDI CC, I could get the on-screen sustain pedal to move, but it would not affect the sound.  I tried everything available, including “set all learned CC’s to Omni”, but to no avail.

It turns out that the answer is in Mainstage.  I had to highlight the channel strip with my Omnisphere instance loaded, and then change the MIDI Input Settings on the “Software Instrument Channel Strip Inspector”.  See below:

Under the “Input” area, change the Keyboard type from “VAX 77” to “Multitimbral”.  This will bring up the following dialog:

You will need to change the last row so that the VAX77 is connected to Omnisphere ch 16.  Now the sustain pedal works inside Omnisphere.  Otherwise, somehow the notes go to Omnisphere on ch 16, but the controllers don’t.  I don’t think I fully understand this, but it works when configured this way.  The mod wheel, etc. also follow this pattern.