Visual Feedback for ML10x

Would it be possible to consider creating some sort of device that will allow real-time visual feedback of ML10xs mounted underneath a pedalboard?

I know, I know. You can always plug the ML10xs into your computer, and use your computer screen to get feedback about which ML10x presets are currently engaged, pedal order, etc., right? Well … not really. If you have the ML10x plugged into a computer via USB, the noise floor is high. It is not really conducive to playing with the ML10x plugged in. As the ML10x’s manual notes, the ML10x was not designed to be operated while plugged into the computer, so using the computer screen for real-time visual feedback isn’t really an option.

Of course, you can always just configure the ML10x while plugged into the computer, then unplug it from USB when you are ready to play, right? This solves the noise floor issue, but it means you get no visual feedback from the ML10x. There is no way to tell which preset is engaged, which pedals are engaged, etc.

One of the best things about the ML10x, in my opinion, is its form factor. I love that it can be mounted underneath a pedalboard, thus saving valuable space on top of the board. I have three of them mounted underneath my pedalboard, with two of them wired in parallel. I love the versatility, and they sound great. But it sometimes feels like I am “flying blind.”

I am now realizing that one of the nice things about my Boss ES8 (which the ML10xs replaced) was that it provided an LCD screen on top of the board so that, at any moment, I could glance down and see exactly which preset was engaged, which pedals were engaged, etc.

With that in mind, I would like to request a new product or feature. Would Morningstar consider making a small LCD screen that could be mounted on top of a pedalboard, which would display the current state of any ML10xs plugged into it? This would provide visual feedback, without the noise floor issues associated with plugging into a computer, while still allowing us to mount the ML10xs underneath our pedalboards.

Alternatively, is there a solution that would allow the ML10x to be plugged into the computer without creating noise floor issues? It’s my understanding that there is a firmware update in the works that would allow the ML10x to communicate wirelessly with a computer via a WIDI uHost. Any updates on that? And if so, would connecting three ML10xs to a computer via 3 WIDI uHosts be just as good as connecting them to the computer via a USB cable? Or would connecting via WIDI uHost be more limited in terms of its functionality?

I don’t have an answer for the product suggestion yet, but regarding the noise floor when connected via USB to the computer, I’d recommend just using a USB isolator which will solve the ground loop issues that you may face, and its less than $10.

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I will try that out. Thanks, James!

I’ve ordered the usb isolator. Will try it out when it comes in and then report back.

In the meantime, I wanted to offer a potentially cool alternative to the idea of a standalone screen for visual feedback for ML10xs mounted under a pedalboard: it would be potentially even cooler if we could get such visual feedback right on the screen of a MC6 Pro/MC8 Pro/MC4 Pro. I know that screen real estate is limited on those devices, but even something as simple as showing the ML10x’s currently engaged preset would be useful (e.g. where three ML10xs have preset numbers 10, 3, and 49 currently engaged, a line under the BPM display on a MC4/6/8 Pro that says, “10,3,49” would be super helpful!). Just a thought!

It would be nice, but in the meantime there are heaps of options for visual feedback via MIDI as you may know. I recently built a virtual pedalboard within MainStage to represent all my MIDI presets and foot controllers / pedals.

Good to know. Thank you for the suggestion!!

Just got the USB isolator, and it appears to do the trick. Plugging the ML10xs into the USB port on my computer no longer raises the noise floor, and the USB isolator does not seem to hinder communication between the ML10xs and my laptop. This is exactly what I was looking for. Thanks, James!!

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