Logic Pro 7 & earlier Newbie: how to get sound from a MIDI file


New Member
Dear Friends,

My apologies for my ignorance.

I am an intermediate musician with no recording-studio experience. For five years I've been using Garageband, Audacity, Qmidi, Aria Maestosa, and other simpler sequencer programs at home, and now I have Logic Pro 7 on a Mac. I do not want to connect any MIDI controllers to the computer or any other hardware. My only need for the program at the moment, is to re-touch MIDI files that I download for the Internet, and make them into accompaniment files that I can export to mp3 and then use, to play along with on my saxophone.

In Garageband I simply imported the MIDI file (via various means, including Dent de MIDI), and Garageband usually guessed automatically regarding which sounds to apply to each track. From there, within GB, I substituted other installed instruments, such as whatever came with the computer, and a few Jam Packs that I bought and installed separately, having verified that they would all work in Logic 7 also, eventually. I also have a few other free soundfonts downloaded and installed, which have been working fine in Garageband.

I had been putting off using Logic just to avoid the learning curve, but today I have finally got started.

To be honest, to this day I do not know where my software instruments have come from in the other programs. I don't know if the computer came with a simple GM set, or if each program installed its own set, but generally they are sufficient for my needs, with a few exceptions, and that is why I installed two or three Jam Packs and other soundfonts. How the programs access them, I have never quite understood.

Anyway, today I have successfully opened a MIDI file in Logic, and got it to "play." Unfortunately no sounds were applied automatically (as they were in the other programs), so I hear nothing. Where do I go to get each track producing sound, or all of them at once? And, after I get my sound, how do I change those instruments to others already installed?

Yes, I have the printed manuals, but the instructions always seem more concerned with showing me how to connect MIDI controllers and appply sounds to those, than with how to get sound from a lone MIDI file when no hardware is connected.

I appreciate your patience, and whatever step-by-step instructions you can give me.


I too have just started on Logic-7, and I find (despite being very experienced computer user and music tech type) the learning curve is very very steep. I recently put Logic 7 on an old Mac G5 running Panther (10.3.9) for reasons I wont bore you with. Very soon I found I wanted more info over and above the manuals. May I suggest to you try and get a copy of "Logic Pro 7 and Logic Express 7" by Martin Sitter ISBN 0-321-25614-X. It was published in 2005 but I managed to find a new one on eBay. It is quite helpful, with tutorial songs and media on a CD that comes in the book.
I am finding that to understand Logic, working through the book chapter by chapter is the only way. Logic is only intuitive when you have learnt it!! Dont give up but it will prob take you a long time. I have spent at least 30 hours of study on it and am still not there.
It seems you are referring to Logic's Audio Instruments: a library of synthesisers that are bundled with and installed with Logic. These must be assigned as inputs to a type of Track called an Audio Instrument track. These tracks use MIDI to trigger sounds from the inserted instrument.

What I have found is that if you just read the selected topic about how to do what, you wont crack the problem. You have to learn Logic from the start!!

I hope these encouragements help!
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New Member

Thanks for the tip. Nothing hurts like the truth.

Believe it or not, I bought an mbox2 years ago, that came with ProTools, and I had precisely the same problem. I had thought that Logic would be more user-friendly, like Garage Band.

I will check out those books you mentioned.

Meanwhile, if anyone else out there has any tips for me, let me know.
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