AC Central – Bluetooth MIDI Connection Hub for iPad

AC Central – Bluetooth MIDI Connection Hub for iPad

AC Central Screenshot

What is AC Central?

AC Central is a free, bluetooth MIDI, auto-connection hub for the AC Sabre Motion MIDI Instrument which takes the hassle out of playing your iPad synths with remotely connected iPhones/iPods. It’s Audiobus 3 compatible including full State Saving of remotely connected AC Sabre settings.

Using AC Central is Easy

  1. Launch AC Central on your iPad
  2. Launch AC Sabre on your iPhone/iPod. Your device should show up under “Connected Devices” in a second or two.
  3. Launch some synths on your iPad and party.

(Note: The first time you might need to enter a Bluetooth pairing code. After that the connection should be automatic)

That’s it. If you having trouble see  Troubleshooting below.  

Multiple Inputs, Multiple Outputs

AC Central supports multiple simultaneous connected devices running AC Sabre. These devices should show up automatically in the Connected Devices section.

CoreMIDI compatible instrument apps running on the iPad show up in AC Central’s MIDI Outputs section. Toggle the output by taping the row. AC Central also configures a CoreMIDI Virtual Out which will visible as an input to your instrument apps. If you use this, be sure to toggle off the output in AC Central as to not have double messages coming through.

AC Central presently doesn’t support routing inputs to specific outputs, however this is usually accomplishable by using different MIDI Channels for each device and target synth. See AC Sabre’s Quick Panels docs and your instruments MIDI settings.

Using AC Central with Audiobus 3

Same as above except instead of launching AC Central manually, you choose it as a MIDI Input and wire it up to your instrument in Audiobus.

AC Central with Audiobus 3

Audiobus Presets (aka State Saving)

When you save/load a preset in Audiobus 3, AC Central will fetch/upload the preset settings from/to your connected device running AC Sabre (which calls them “patches”).  If you load a preset and no devices are connected to AC Central, then the preset will be uploaded to the first AC Sabre device that connects. Presently, AC Central will save/load the preset only to the first connected AC Sabre device if multiple ones are connected.


My iPhone/iPod doesn’t show up in AC Central…

Try this hierarchy of steps…

  1. Check neither device is in Airplane mode and that Bluetooth is turned out. 
  2. Toggle bluetooth off, wait a few seconds and then toggle it on. 
  3. Try killing/restarting AC Central on the iPad and/or AC Sabre on the iPhone/iPod
  4. Try rebooting the devices. This actually does work sometimes.
  5. Format your hard drive and reinstall Win…just kidding – Seriously, if you are still stuck, get in touch and we’ll try to work out any issues:

My iPhone/iPod shows up in AC Central but no MIDI output comes through…

First, swipe open the right QuickPanel in AC Sabre and check that the MIDI Channel is what you expect it to be (usually “1”).

Second check that the target output app supports Background Mode. If it doesn’t not, don’t worry as AC Central does. Switch to your instrument app and now try playing it with the remotely connected AC Sabre.

If that’s not the issue then try steps above and if it’s still bugging you, it’s possibly a known issue that occurs sometimes with the Apple system where the Bluetooth peripheral connects but fails to register with CoreMIDI. I’m working on a better solution but for now you’ll need to “forget” the device via the MIDI settings in another app such as Animoog. Go to the MIDI settings and tap the Bluetooth MIDI button. A popup like the one below should appear. If you tap the entry for your device, it will try to connect but fail. Turn off Bluetooth on your device so the entry goes dim and swipe left and “Forget” the entry. Then re-enable bluetooth on your remote device. A new entry should appear. You can try to connect now. If it works here then AC Central should work as well.

If it still fails, the next port of call is to go to your iDevices’ Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings. 

Still having problems…

Get in touch at We’ll work through it and get you up and running asap…

Other Questions

Can I use AC Central on my iPhone?

Not yet. I need to make the UI work for smaller devices. If you really need it for a rig you are working on get in touch and I’ll send you a dodgy looking but totally functional beta: