BeatBuddy great but by no means perfect yet

The midi clock sync drifting out of time after a minute or so when synced to my Zoom HD16 multitracker (BB as slave) was too much of an issue for me so reluctantly I’ve sold my BeatBuddy. Even my cheapo Boss DR-3 can stay in time via clock sync so for me it’s not good enough that a relatively expensive thing like BB cannot stay in sync.

Summing up, BB is unique in what it can do and is a great sounding pedal and drummer substitute for live work (which I don’t do) but its lack of reliable clock sync, any other form of midi communication but clock sync, the fact that you can’t program a song to play all the way through, the ‘beta’ clunky software and slow firmware updates means it’s not right for me at the moment. Ah well, back to EZDrummer and Addictive Drums (maybe V2 will be perfect?)!

One thing must be noted, however, the midi clock sync is perfect when BeatBuddy is a MIDI Master.

But that does not prove that the BB clock is not drifting even as master. It may be that other devices as slaves can lock to the BB clock and stay sync’d as the BB clock drifts. My tests indicate that the BB is totally unable to function as a slave as it is unable to stay sync-locked with any master that I have tried (boomerang and dp-32). Also, the BB as a master does not start/stop the dp-32 so it cannot be used as master with that device; I am required the dp-32 to be the master if it is to be used. The BB just does not work as it is advertised as a midi slave. This really needs to be addressed as either an admitted design flaw, fixed in a firmware update or detailed instructions provided how to make it work. If I had known this before purchase I would never had bought the BB. While I am appreciative of this forum is I am very dissatisfied with the support available for this product company.

As far as I know, Boomerang isn’t capable to be a MIDI Master. It is a perfect MIDI Slave, though.

DP-32 not starting/stopping by BeatBuddy most likely means you haven’t setup your DP-32 properly, as I am sure it should be able to respond the standard MIDI commands that BeatBuddy sends properly.

I really hope I will look into the tempo drifting soon by making BeatBuddy a slave to another BeatBuddy to eliminate any possible problems of other units.

There are only a few setting options for midi in the DP-32 and I have them set correctly for both master and slave configurations as confirmed by a Tascam support tech. I can also sync 2 DP-32’s together as master/slave, and DP>rang work fine.

Defector, please do the BB>BB test, but even if successful, it doesn’t invalidate the BB slave problem with the dp-32 as other devices (BB and rangs in my case) do sync properly as slaves to the DP master. I think confirmation of slave sync of the BB to a master unit from another manufacturer is the appropriate real-world test as I don’t think there is much musical use syncing a BB to a BB. I don’t have any other midi devices to test as masters to a BB slave to try to repeat my experience with the DP as master to the BB, but post #1 on this thread confirms my observations exactly.

I need the DP-32 as midi master so I can record one set of loops to the DP, then sync to those and record another set of loops, and repeat until satisfied with the results (or until all 32 tracks on the DP are full or the loops combine to sound like white noise!)

Following tests are Master>Slave1>Salve2

BB> 2 rangs
DP>2 rangs

Result1: Both rangs sync perfectly with either the BB or DP as masters
Conclusion1A: Rangs sync as slaves to either BB or DP w/out glitch
Conclusion1B: BB and DP-32 sync as masters w/out glitch

DP>2 rangs>BB
DP>BB>2 rangs

Result2: BB starts/stops correctly as slave, but drifts almost immediately while rangs stay in sync w/DP for at least 30 minutes.
Conclusion2A: BB transport controls (start/stop) work as a slave w/out glitch.
Conclusion2B: BB cannot stay in sync with DP as master, but DP as master was confirmed in Test 1, so problem is with the BB as slave.


Result3: Nothing happens
Conclusion3: Not sure what to conclude as I can sync DP>DP (which I think further verifies that the DP midi sync settings are correct). If this worked I could use it for my purposes instead of DP as master, but it does not. Has anyone gotten a multitrack sync’d as slave to the BB?

I think my logic is correct (please correct me if you see any flaws) in concluding that the BB does not sync properly as a slave to at least the Tascam DP-32 or a Zoom HD16.

Is there some (hopefully free) utility that can capture the midi stream from the DP and BB, and line them up to see if they are actually time-aligned?

@further Thanks for your time for such a complete diagnostics!
This is an invaluable source of info to polish the BeatBuddy. I will definitely have a look at it!

Klink, im just curious…How are you using it as a MIDI master clock source? I’ve actually tried syncing my Zoom R24 (which has no DIN MIDI jack) using a SMPTE stripe on track 24 via the headphone out (see here: ) to a MOTU Express. It actually worked fairly well but then it started to drift after a few minutes which I concluded was likely due to the fact that there was no word clock sync (i.e. jitter) between the two machines.
Correct me if i’m wrong but it seems as though as of this writing the BB can only successfully synchronize when the BB is configured as the MIDI Master (via the BB MIDI Out) or am I missing something here?

It was simply HD16 as master (HD16 won’t work as slave to anything), BB as slave. Zoom got rid of all the midi stuff for some reason after the HD16 so you’ll probably struggle to sync an R24 to anything. I’ve never tried BB as master to anything so can’t comment but others say it works well, however with BB as slave it just slowly drifts out of time and lags slightly behind the master after a while.

@Klink do you still have your BeatBuddy? Please test the new firmware and tell me if this fixes the sync drift problem. Download the new firmware here.

@Klink[/USER] [USER=2798]@further[/USER] [USER=260]@miamigroove Please test the new firmware and tell me if this fixes the sync drift problem. Download the new firmware here.

142 ???

I installed 141 yesterday !

What’s been added in 142 ?

Each time there is an update the version number goes up. Reading the above it appears the only thing that has been added to 1.42 is a possible fix for the “sync drift” problem and is currently being tested by users having this problem.

I have zero sync problems with my Boomerang III

Love it !

Rang III for the win! :slight_smile:
The only thing that makes me a little sad is that I don’t know if Rang would ever be able to accept any special MIDI commands for advanced things like changing the active track.

I don’t see the need for that…

If you want to change track just press the buttons on the Rang.

It’s perfect as is .

I couldn’t be happier with this combo :D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D

Gotta LOVE the Americans :p:p:p

What would we be without them :smiley:

In Soviet Russia music writes You :slight_smile:

Thanks David but unfortunately I sold my BB due to the midi slave sync issue so can’t try new firmware. Wish I’d have kept it now but I’ll probably get another one sometime when the exchange rate improves in Australia!


Well, that was a joke. Apparently it didn’t hit the spot :confused:

Too bad… we really want to solve this issue. I hope we get some users to test it ASAP…