A collection of Miniak related tools

MiniakPanel Beta 4 - Single Panel for all controls.

MiniakPanel Beta 4 - One screen shows all

MiniakPanel Beta 3 - Osc, Envs, LFOs, MIDI, TOC/Patch

MiniakPanel Beta 3 - Osc, Envs, LFOs, MIDI, TOC/Patch

MiniakPanel Beta 3 - Pre/Post/Filters/EFX

MiniakPanel Beta 3 - Pre/Post/Filters/EFX

MiniakPanel Beta 3 - MOD Source/Dest, Tracking, Blend 4 patches

MiniakPanel Beta 3 - MOD Source/Dest, Tracking, Blend 4 patches


Miniaktools began when I bought my Miniak in December 2010, and was dismayed that the power of the synth was hidden away from the end user. So I set about creating a GUI, using C#, to externalize all of the available controls. If you have a Miniak, ensure you join the Yahoo Ion Group. Also, please read the Ion-Micron-Miniak Wiki where you can find a wealth of useful information / how to. MiniakPanel is the GUI used to control the Miniak. I cannot test on a Micron, but I am reasonably confident it will work. But MiniakPanel is a small part of the toolset on offer here. There are also programs to

MiniakPanel works under .NET 4, and hence Microsoft XP or Windows 7. It has been tested on both 32, but built using Visual Studio 2010 to be compatible with all platforms (32/64bit). I test on 32bit, so apologies if your 64bit system behaves differently ... do let me know and I will try to debug it. Ultimately, I aim to port to Qt and RtMIDI so as to make the code more platform agnostic (ie Windows, Mac, Linux). Most of the other Miniaktools are pure C/C++, with source code provided. Windows and Ubuntu/Fedora Core linux binaries are available too.

Using a suitable USB to Midi cable, you can control your Miniak directly from MiniakPanel. You can also chain in an external control surface, such as a BCR2000. If connected properly, the MiniakPanel will respond to X, Y, Z knob changes (from the Miniak) or the appropriate NRPNs received from the external control.

This software is in an advanced beta stage. If you want something, feel free to drop me line. I have given the software a reasonable test, but obviously I am not doing this project professionally. Bugs and errors will have crept in. Please let me know about them. Or use the tracking system at SourceForge project site.

Copyright (C) 2011, Steve Hookings<sghookings AT>

Miniaktools is free software licensed under the terms of the GPL v3 license.

Getting started

MIDI concepts

It is assumed you already know how to connect a USB cable to a Windows PC, and how to connect the 5 pin DIN sockets to your Miniak (out to in ... in to out). If you are really stuck, please take a look at tutorials like this one all around the Net.

Typical Usage Example

If you think MiniakPanel is not responding to MIDI, put a MIDI sniffer, like MIDIOX in the way. What does it see? .

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you make the Miniak display the changes being sent to it?

Essentially, no! Well, not at the moment. But if you happen to be watching the param you are modifying, you will see it. The Miniak is a closed system, and the good people of Alesis/AKAI didnt feel the need to tell use mere users what the SysEx codes are. It has been left to some of us to reverse engineer it. If anyone does know how to do this, and is willing to share it with me, please drop me a mail. I gave this some more thought over Christmas period. So I have an advanced prototype based on Arduino Mega 1280 which:

But, have designed sketches (building on breadboard to check logic) to The idea being the Master keyboard goes into my Merge 1 IN. The Miniak MIDI OUT goes into my Merge 2 IN. The output of this goes INTO the BCR2000. This should allow the MINIAK's XYZ knobs to update the BCR LEDs. The output from BCR goes into my MIDI transform, and OUT to my 5 way Thru box. This routes round my system and ultimately back into the Miniak. So logically, the MIDI transform can see "Biased" output from BCR and turn it into S14 Alesis format. It can also see, via feedback, the Miniak changes and hence both BCR and crucially the LCD attached to the transform engine can also see the modified values (whether from BCR or from Miniak). Here's a picture of A14 to S14 early prototype.
Transforming biased A14 NRPNs to S14 Alesis NRPNs

Transforming biased NRPNs (value + 8192) to signed 14 bit Alesis standard. Transform allows S14 to pass thru unharmed! Later circuit has midi merge/thru.

Transforming biased A14 NRPNs to S14 Alesis NRPNs

Here, NRPN address 12 (waveshape1), has value 16278. More advanced prototypes will decode names/values.


You can find the latest sources, Windows, and BCR SysEx templates at SourceForge project site.


MiniakPanel requires .NET 4 or later. Once you have that, copy the latest version of MiniakPanel.exe to your PC, double click and you are away and running. The current latest version is beta 3. But please consult the files section for the latest incarnation (SourceForge project site). All other programs are either source, platform specific executables or SysEx files. To compile under Windows, try:

cl /Zi /EHsc theprog.cpp

And under Linux

g++ -o theProg theProg.cpp


In order to use MiniakPanel.exe, you need at least .NET 4.0 and an XP or Windows 7 OS. I havent tried on Vista ... but come on ... you want to USE your computer right :-)

Optionally, you can build on Visual Studio 2010, C# from the git source tree.

How different are Micron v Miniak patches?

This questions comes up often enough that I wanted to show the differences. NOTE: Sound is an aural phenonemom ... in other words sure there are differences, some looking rather trivial, some looking more fundamental. Ultimately, the hardware itself could change the final sound too. Simply to say please look here for the list of differences, but test to make your own opinion. Make sound, not noise!. Decoded Micron v Miniak Differences.


The internet can be a wonderful place for collaboration. Dale, setup the Yahoo Ion Group. Many folks took time to experiment and gleen information about the Miniak. Where I have borrowed code/techniques, I have given full credit in the source code.

Cheers, and enjoy Miniaktools!


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