Serial routing between bomeboxes

I'm just checking whether it's possible to extend a serial connection to another bomebox over a network, or does it need to be converted to midi first? I can only find midi routing options in the UI


So instead of routing a MIDI message over the network, you want to route a serial message over the network to another BomeBox?

I haven’t tested this but if you are serious about it, I can. Could you tell me more about your vision/objective and why you want to do this? Perhaps there is another method to achieve your desired results?

I know you can define serial devices as MIDI connections in MT Pro, so that from the project perspective the MIDI data just goes to serial ports as opposed to MIDI ports. What I’m unsure of is whether the data streams on the remote end would be able to recognize arbitrary non-MIDI data streams. Translators can non-MIDI data patterns from serial ports but I’m not sure if they can recognize non-MIDI data patterns from MIDI ports.

I’ll do a bit of research while I’m waiting to hear back from you on the reason you asked.

Steve Caldwell
Bome Q and A Moderator and
Independent Bome Consultant/Specialist

Thanks very much Steve,

It’s essentially to ‘remote’ a serial device over a network without a computer at either end. I’m already using a bome box to do some midi to serial conversion and I’ve seen the ‘midi device’ in the serial options so could test it. It’s pretty much sending a string of ascii every 20ms both ways

So essentially you would have a serial device on each BomeBox. And any serial message coming into BomeBox1 would go out of the serial port of BomeBox2 and visa versa?
Could I ask with you would be connecting to the serial devices, is this for some sort of ASCII display or are you using this as some sort of heartbeat protocol between the devices attached to the serial ports on each device?

It’s a ‘heartbeat’ protocol sending control data between the two boxes

Is there a reason you are using serial instead of MIDI? Are there actual serial devices at each end? If not, why not just set up a MIDI heartbeat protocol of your own?

They’re both serial devices

the Bome Network (and the BomeBox MIDI network) only transfers valid MIDI data. I assume that your serial data is not MIDI compatible…

So then you can do a very stupid serial to MIDI conversion (and back):

INCOMING: Serial: Data (Numbers): pp
Outgoing: MIDI Channel 1, Control Change #1, value: pp
–> turn every single Serial byte into a program change with program set to that serial byte.

On the receiving BomeBox, undo:
Incoming: MIDI Channel 1, Control Change #1, any value, set pp to value
Outgoing: Serial Port, Data (number): pp

That should work. The network is fast (much much faster than serial ports), so the huge overhead (one byte payload is transmitted in 3 bytes MIDI) should not matter.

Effectively, we’re tunneling serial port data over MIDI.

If your serial data is not only ASCII, but also has bytes with value > 127 (high bit set), we need to adapt the tunneling algorithm slightly to account for that. Control change values can only be 0…127.


Yes, that is what I was thinking. We may need to encode serial data into a Sysex message and send it across that way and then decode it back to serial data at the remote end. This is similar to what Mackie MCU Status message streams do.