The Official MIDI Specifications

The MIDI Manufacturers Association (MMA) produces the Specifications that make MIDI products work together. The Specifications define new MIDI Messages and new recommended practices for using MIDI Technology.

Join the MIDI Association and use the links below to find and download all of the available MIDI Specifications and Recommended Practices.

Note: For people who want to learn about MIDI technology without reading the technical specifications we have Tutorials here, and a Video Curriculum here.

MIDI Reference Tables (7)

Our reference tables are the quick and easy way to look up the meaning of a particular MIDI message number, view Manufacturer SysEx ID Numbers, find International Standards that incorporate MIDI, and more.

The MIDI 1.0 Specification (2)

The MIDI 1.0 Specification is actually a collection of documents that define MIDI messages (and "recommended practices") adopted from 1983 to date. The newest specifications are the "MIDI Polyphonic Expression (MPE) Specification", and the "MIDI Capability Inquiry Messages", both of which can be downloaded from the "Complete MIDI 1.0 Detailed Specification" page.

Standard MIDI Files ("SMF") (3)

Information about the Standard MIDI File (SMF) Specification, and these updates: SMF Lyrics/Display Meta-events, SMF Program Name /Device Name Meta-events, XMF Patch Prefix SMF Meta-event.

General MIDI ("GM") Specifications (5)

The General MIDI (GM) Specifications (GM1, GM2, and GM Lite) define features for MIDI content and playback devices so that content will play back the same on all compatible devices.

Downloadable Sounds ("DLS") Specifications (4)

The Downloadable Sounds (DLS) specifications define the means to create and playback sound data (waveforms and playback parameters) on compatible synthesizers from a variety of vendors. There are 3 separate DLS Specifications: DLS Level 1, DLS Level 2, and Mobile DLS.

MIDI Transport Specifications (3)

The original MIDI 1.0 Specification called for using a 5-Pin DIN cable to connect MIDI compatible devices, but today there are many different "transports" for MIDI, including USB MIDI, IEEE-1394 MIDI, RTP-MIDI, and Bluetooth LE MIDI.

eXtensible Music Format ("XMF") (4)

Information about the eXtensible Music Format (XMF) Specifications, including: XMF Meta File Format Updates, XMF File Types 1-4, XMF Enhancements, and XMF Registered IDs.

Mobile MIDI & Ringtone Specifications (3)

The MMA Mobile MIDI & Ringtone Specifications include: Mobile XMF/DLS, Scalable Polyphony-MIDI (SP-MIDI), Mobile Musical Instrument (MMI), and Mobile Phone Control.