Article

How To Connect MIDI Keyboard To iPad With Bluetooth (Wirelessly)

12 May 2017

To date, the standard way to connect a MIDI keyboard to an iPad has been to create a wired connection between the two. How To Connect A MIDI Keyboard To An iPad (Wired Connection) describes how to do this.

 

However, for those who prefer a neater, more elegant solution, Bluetooth is becoming more widely available.

 

Bluetooth MIDI instruments

 

There are already some MIDI pianos / keyboards that include Bluetooth within the instrument. If you have one of these instruments, all you have to do is turn ‘ON’ Bluetooth on your MIDI instrument and then turn on the MIDI connection in the MIDI software on your iPad.

 

For users of our Musiah Piano Lessons software, simply click “Settings” and then “Connect Bluetooth MIDI Device”. It’s that easy.

 

Bluetooth MIDI Adapters

 

For those of you who have a standard (non-bluetooth MIDI piano / keyboard), there are now affordable Bluetooth adapters available such as the Yamaha MD-BT01 and UD-BT01 (very forgettable names, I know).

 

To help you remember which is which, the “M” in MD-BT01 stands for MIDI (as in keyboards that have MIDI In / MIDI Out ports). And the “U” in UD-BT01 stands for USB (as in keyboards that have a USB-to-Host port).

 

The below chart shows a comparison of the two Bluetooth MIDI adapters.

 

Bluetooth Comparison Chart

 

 

Which Bluetooth MIDI adapter should you choose?

 

The MD-BT01 basically plugs into your MIDI In and MIDI Out ports and magically draws enough power from the MIDI ports to power itself so it can broadcast MIDI data by Bluetooth to your iPad.

 

This adapter typically suits standalone MIDI instruments that have their own power supply.

 

MD-BT01Connection

 

 

By contrast, the UD-BT01 is designed mainly for MIDI controllers that do not have their own power supply.

 

To date, one would normally connect a USB 2.0 cable from the USB to Host port on a MIDI controller to a USB port on a computer (for example). The reason this works with a computer is because the USB port on a computer can provide enough power to run a MIDI controller. However, an iPad does not have enough power to run both itself and a MIDI controller.

 

Enter the UD-BT01.

 

As the image below shows, you connect a USB 2.0 cable to the USB to Host port on your MIDI controller / instrument and the other end plugs into the UD-BT01. How does the UD-BT01 get enough power to run your MIDI controller? It, in turn, is plugged into a USB AC power adapter such as the one you would use to charge your iPad.

 

Once these connections are made, the UD-BT01 then provides power to your MIDI instrument while also broadcasting MIDI data via Bluetooth to your iPad.

 

UD-BT01Connection

 

What if you have a fancy MIDI piano / keyboard that has both MIDI and USB ports… Which adapter should you use?

 

For all connections (even wired ones) you should always use the USB to Host option if available. This is because many MIDI-to-USB cables are incompatible with some makes / models of keyboards, whereas USB to Host is not subject to any compatibility issues.

 

So, of the two adapters, I suggest the UD-BT01 because the beauty of the UD-BT01 (compared to the MD-BT01) is that it will work with both USB-to-Host and MIDI In/Out connections.

 

You see, if you really want to use your MIDI In / Out ports, you can connect a MIDI-to-USB cable to the UD-BT01, then plug the UD-BT01 into a USB AC adapter and it will work.

 

So, if there is a possibility that you may change MIDI instruments (let’s say you own an older digital piano with MIDI In / Out ports but no USB-to-Host and you also own a MIDI controller), then the UD-BT01 is the adapter you should get because it will work with both instruments.

 

OK, so that concludes the factual connection-related info. But there is one more thing you need to consider, namely how good / reliable are these Bluetooth adapters.

 

How reliable are these Bluetooth MIDI adapters?

 

Having tested the UD-BT01 with four different MIDI keyboards, I found that it worked 100% as intended with three of the keyboards and let’s say 97% as well as expected with the fourth keyboard.

 

On the fourth keyboard, which happened to be an M-Audio KeyRig 49 MIDI controller I widely use as a testing instrument for the Musiah piano lessons software, it works fine for most pieces on the Musiah syllabus. However, on some of the more complex pieces where there is more note data being broadcast, there are some occasional notes that continue to sound indefinitely. My impression is that this is most likely due to some of the “Note Off” messages not reaching the iPad.

 

While I have yet to test the MD-BT01, even if I do test it, that particular adapter cannot be tested with this MIDI controller as it requires MIDI In / Out ports which this MIDI controller does not have.

 

Just to clarify, the MIDI controller does not have a fault as it works perfectly with all wired connections. Nor does the issue relate to the Musiah for iPad software as the same Bluetooth adapter works perfectly well with my other three MIDI keyboards and this software

 

The issue is, in my view, a minor incompatibility between the UD-BT01 and the M-Audio KeyRig 49.

 

On a related note, I have also read some reviews online that indicate these Bluetooth adapters work with some but not all MIDI keyboards.

 

Because of this and my own experience (which was good but not perfect), I cannot recommend these Yamaha Bluetooth adapters. I am simply providing this information for your reference so you can make an informed decision whether to try one of these adapters for yourself.

 

If you do decide to try one, it will most likely work well for you – in which case, great!

 

However, if you encounter a similar issue, please note that it is not caused by the Musiah software, and that I did not recommend that you buy one of these products.

 

I hope this information is helpful to you, and please feel free to comment below.

 

Brendan Hogan

Piano Teacher & Musiah Inventor

 

P.S. If you enjoyed this article, please share it with others on your facebook page, blog or website.

 

Please — Tell your friends / relatives about Musiah

 

Earn cash rewards with our Referral Rewards Program 

 

Enroll Now

 

 

 

Related Articles

 

Recommended

How To Connect A MIDI Keyboard To An iPad (Wired Connection)

iPad Piano Lessons — The Best Approach

Could A Piano Lessons App Be “More Human Than A Human Teacher”?

Reflection On Piano Lessons With Musiah: First Two Weeks — Absolutely Dumbfounded

Video Presentation: Online Piano Lessons — A Fun Way To Learn Piano 16 Times Faster

What Is A Real Piano Lesson?

 

MUSIAH REVIEWS

 

Musiah Review By Celebrity Music Maestro — John Foreman

Video: Musiah Online Piano Lessons Review By John Foreman Celebrity Music Maestro

 

Musiah Review By Young Student

Musiah Review By The First Ever Student To Complete The Musiah Course

 

Musiah Reviews By Parents Whose Kids Are Learning Piano With Musiah

Learning Piano Online — A Musiah Review by a Mom from Utah U.S.A.

Musiah Online Piano Lessons Review By Mum Of Three

Review: Why Musiah Piano Lessons Work Wonders For Kids And Adults

Musiah Review By A Mum Who Is Learning With Her Son (external blog)

Musiah Review: Family Of Musicians “Highly Recommends” Musiah Piano Lessons

Musiah Review: Keyboard Instruction And Music Theory In A Fun Format

- More Musiah Reviews By Parents

 

Musiah Reviews By Adult Students

Musiah Online Piano Lessons Review By An Adult Student

Musiah Piano Tuition — A Candid Review By A Young Man from Melbourne

Musiah Review: A Piano Tutor Who Brings Out The Best In You

Musiah Review Compares Musiah To Other Piano Lessons

Musiah Review: "I'm Addicted To Musiah. It Is Superb"

Musiah Review: Musiah Blows Other Online Piano Lessons Out Of The Water

Musiah Review: Musiah Is My Hero – Incredible, Remarkable Software Says Renowned Puppeteer

Musiah Review: Musiah Piano Lessons Enrich Life Says Ohio Woman

- More Musiah Reviews By Adult Students

 

Musiah Reviews By Mature-Age Adult Students

Learning To Play Piano Online With Musiah: Review By A Retired Teacher

Meet Our Newest Musiah From Ohio, USA

Musiah Online Piano Lessons Review: Mature-Age Piano Student Sees Genius In Musiah

Musiah Piano Lessons Review: This Is The Best Program I Have Seen

- More Musiah Reviews By Mature-Age Adult Students

 

Piano Lessons Articles

Best Free Piano Lessons — Why Learning Piano With Musiah Is Better Than Free Piano Lessons

Best Piano Lessons

Best Piano Method

Can You Really Teach Yourself Piano/Keyboard Online?

How To Learn Piano 16 Times Faster

Learning To Play Piano: The Greatest Benefit You Never Heard Of

Online Piano Lessons Software

Piano Lessons — A System For Rapidly Learning Piano Pieces

Piano Lessons Or Keyboard Lessons — What Is The Difference?

Piano Practice Tips: The 12 Most Common Piano Practice Mistakes And How To Correct Them

The Damage Caused By Online Piano Lessons And How To Avoid It

Why Learning Piano As An Adult Is Easier Thank You Think

 

More Articles

Posted in: Learning To Play Piano

 

 

By:

Return to Blog Home

Comment on this post

*
*

(your email address will not be displayed with the comment)

*

Note to Spammers: All comments on this blog are subject to approval before they are published. Only genuine comments will be published.

 
* Required

Comments

I just ordered a UD-BT01. You mentioned that it worked 100% on 3 of 4 keyboard and 97% on the M-Audio. I'm using an Alessis V49, which is also USB midi and powered by that port. The only other port the V49 has is a jack for a sustain pedal. Can you reveal the three 100% keyboards you tested?

Sarah Lyon

Free Trial

Try Musiah
Online Piano Lessons NOW
FREE for 14 Days

Start my free trial
  • 100% FREE Trial
  • No contracts
  • No risk
 

Tell A Friend

Or Follow Us

 
 

 
 

Article Categories

 

Tag Cloud

A.I.  Benefits  Practice Tips  Reviews  Free  Adults  Beginners  Kids  Parents  Learning  Software 

 

Archives

 

What people say about Musiah

 

[From the perspective of a person who has just installed the Beta software]

 

Bravo! Just letting you know it all went swimmingly today. I will be working on a very positive Beta feedback statement soon. The setup for the hardware was really effective and had the keyboard and mouse set up effortlessly. The only real eye-opener is how badly my daughter has been taught rhythm at her primary school - a veritably scandalous lack of timing!! For the first lesson I actually had to waltz with her around the living room to get her body to understand the rhythm. I thought all music teachers accepted that rhythm is truly essential. A hard but very good day!

Many thanks! Graham

 
 

Graham L - Dunlop ACT, Australia

 

Gift Certificates

The Gift of Music is a
lifelong gift. Give it to
someone you love with
a Musiah Gift Certificate.

GIFT CERTIFICATES
 
 

Receive Musiah Updates

 
 
 
 
 
 

Musiah Latest News

The lastest Musiah Unity (Beta) update now features a slick looking page turn effect in full page view for pieces with multiple pages.

READ MORE
 

Twitter

 
 
 
RSS Feed