Am I misunderstanding Aliases (probably)


Hi guys.

I’ve recently bought an Akai MPK261. I am using it currently over usb. Up till now, I’ve been using various keyboards over standard 5-pin midi, using channel 1 for the bottom board and channel 2 for the upper keyboard. In the midi ports settings, I have main keyboard with the midi interface channel 1 and upper keyboard the same on channel 2. This obviously means I can use any keyboard as long as they’re set to the right midi channel…
So, what I’m trying to do is set up the mpk so that it becomes the upper keyboard. So I’ve got the usb midi port of the mpk set up right, but when I set the Alias to Upper keyboard (which in my understanding means that I don’t then have to reprogram all my songs), Cantabile complains that I have too many Upper keyboards…

How do I then achieve what I need to do?

(Ultimately, I’ll use the mpk over midi but I’m waiting for a power supply)

Cheers as always,



Hey Pierce,

I don’t think you need to use an alias, you can just check the input port box for the MPK261 on the upper keyboard C3 virtual port and make sure that it is the only port that has the checkbox ticked in your ports list. It will be recognized that way …

If I understand aliases correctly they allow you to use a any MIDI port to “stand in” for the original port named in all the songs. So for example you have all your songs using “Main Keyboard” but you want to use an alias to replace the original port. You leave all the songs alone and go to the options, create the port,name it what ever you want and give it the alias “Main Keyboard”. It will only work though, if the original “Main Keyboard” port is deleted. (you can’t have 2 ports with the same name). Once these steps are done when you go to your songs the “Main Keyboard” labels will bear the name of your port where you made the alias entry for “Main Keyboard”. My example above would replace the “Main Keyboard” name with "Onscreen Keyboard’ in all the songs that had “Main Keyboard” in them. The songs will not be altered by this and will still have the "Main Keyboard reference in the json file but the alias over rides that.



Cheers Dave,

I’ll try that… So what are the aliases for then?



Hey Pierce,

My understanding is that they are for when you want to change the labels on your ports in all your songs that previously had the same port names. Some folk will set up their MIDI ports using the Keyboard model for the name. If down the way they change to a new keyboard model they can use aliases to effect the name change globally over the entire group of songs they have already made. So if I had made all my ports named as “RD-2000 MIDI In” in options when I started and that was my default route for a set of say 50 songs I made over a period of time and I wanted to change that name to read “Oxygen 88” or “Axiom 61” going forward. I could do so by creating the new route with it’s new name, setting the alias name to “RD-2000 MIDI In” and then deleting the original “RD-2000 MIDI In” route in the ports list.



I may be misunderstanding the issue but you can tick multiple boxes for a single alias. I have a “main keyboard” and a “bass keyboard”. My main keyboard is any 88 key through either my Fireface UCX Midi 1 one or a Midimate port 1 (for when I use my X32 as interface). My bass keyboard is a Panorama P4 or an Arturia Keylab Mk2 49, the former I keep in the studio and the latter is in a flightcase for gigging.

So I have two aliases each with two boxes ticked. I never have to change anything hooking up different boards that way.

It works similarly for audio ports by the way.


Cheers Sander, I’ll look into it!