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I have a couple of hardware synthesizers and I understand that one of their features is to transmit their current settings (and all of their preset settings) by sending them out as MIDI SysEx data. I understand it's possible to store these dumps on a computer, but I'm not sure how this is done. Does it require vendor-specific software for each device, or is there a general solution? What does the workflow look like?

It would be great to make backups of my synth's settings, so that I can try editing them without fear of losing previous settings.

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Sysex Librarian will work for you if you're on a Mac. I've successfully used this with my Ensoniq VFXsd and SD-1, both of which are quite finicky about receiving SysEx.

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I use MIDI-Ox for this.

If you go into the SysEx window, there is an option for receiving a dump and sending it.

  1. Click View->SysEx
  2. Click SysEx->Receive Manual Dump

Nothing vendor-specific needed. You don't need to interpret the data... just store it and play it back.

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