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General MIDI Lite

A variation of the General MIDI specification that has been approved and adopted by the MIDI Manufacturers Association to accommodate a new generation of new tone generators found in mobile telephones and other handheld devices.

The General MIDI Lite device specification is intended for equipment that does not have the capability to support the full feature set defined in General MIDI 1.0, with the understanding that reduced performance parameters may be necessary in some mobile applications. The most apparent feature of GM Lite is its limit of 16-note polyphony, compared to GM 1’s 24-note maximum and GM 2’s 32-note specification. In addition, GM Lite recognizes a reduced set of 7 control change messages plus pitch bend (in contrast to GM 2’s 20-plus controllers). GM Lite supports the GM 1 instrument and percussion sound sets. A list of the significant specifications for GM Lite appears below.

GM Lite is one of two recent variations of the MIDI specification for mobile devices. The second, SP-MIDI, is designed to address the varying polyphony capabilities encountered in different cell phones and handheld devices.

General MIDI Lite Specification
16 simultaneous notes
16 MIDI Channels
– Simultaneous Melodic Instruments = up to 15
– Simultaneous Percussion Kits = 1 (Channel 10)

SUPPORTED CONTROL CHANGE MESSAGES
Modulation Depth (cc#1)
– Channel Volume (cc#7)
Pan (cc#10)
Expression (cc#11)
– Data Entry (cc#6/38)
– Hold1 (Pedal) (cc#64)
– Pitch Bend
– All Sound Off, All Notes Off, Reset All Controllers

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