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MTS (MIDI Time Stamping)

An abbreviation that stands for many different things, but the one that concerns us is the newly coined term from Mark of the Unicorn. MTS is their technology known as MIDI Time Stamping, which allows MIDI tracks to be recorded and played back with an extremely high degree of timing accuracy. MIDI Time Stamping has been a part of all MOTU USB MIDI interfaces and is officially being deployed (activated) with the release of Digital Performer version 2.61. It is a method of coding MIDI data that passes through a MOTU MIDI interface with specific timing information. Once each piece of MIDI data is time stamped the software can control it with an extremely high degree of accuracy, and (this is the important part) play it back with that degree of accuracy. The key to MTS is that MIDI playback is no longer computer clock dependent. For playback, the time stamped event is pre-transmitted to the USB interface from DP, and the MOTU USB interface handles the transmission of those events to the playback MIDI modules. MOTU boasts sub-millisecond accuracy with MTS, and has changed the PPQ resolution of DP to accept values up to 10,000! Now that’s a lot of pulses per quarter note.

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