Old 01-21-2015, 03:24 PM   #1
Diki Ross
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Default Starter MIDI questions

Search isn't really helping me so far, so forgive me for asking some things that perhaps have been asked and answered differently.

A little about my workflow and needs...

I come from a Cubase VST Mac OS 9.2.2 background (I have used more modern OSX Cubase's very little) on the Mac. I am now using an iMac 27", currently on OSX 10.6.8

My primary needs (at the moment) are to be able to open .MID files, send them to my MIDI interface (a Steinberg Midex3) and off to a variety of MIDI outboard stuff, primarily a Roland BK-9, Kurzweil K2500 and a Korg Triton (though others get added from time to time).

Let's deal with my primary issue at the moment... If I import an SMF, how do I get the Mixer to pick up the initial MIDI volume and Pan commands from the tracks and reflect them in the Mixer's initial settings? How do I get the Mixer's meters to show MIDI output rather than audio? And is there a way on import to have the Track's input and output channels set automatically (to reflect the MIDI channel of the track), rather than having to go and do it manually for each channel..?

My next weird request is, how do you get the little piano keys on the left side of the MIDI Piano Roll editor to play the same MIDI channel as the track? I can have a drum track open, and if I click on the notes, the drums sound fine (so being sent on Ch.10), but clicking in the piano keyboard on the left seems to play some other MIDI channel. Is there a way to set it up so that whatever MIDI channel the track is set to is what the keyboard outputs?

Finally (for now!) is there any way to do 'positional' editing? One of my favorite tricks on drum tracks is to be able to say 'select all the snare backbeats (beats on 2&4, for instance in a 4/4 song) and raise their velocities 20' or things like that? When working on drum tracks, it's very handy to do stuff based on the position in the bar, and incredibly time consuming to have to go through an entire piece selecting only the backbeats by hand. Cubase's Logical Editor made stuff like this a snap!

No doubt I'll have more as time goes on, but those basic questions will get me up to speed to start with.

Much appreciation, in advance!
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Old 01-22-2015, 10:17 AM   #2
Tod
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Hi Diki Ross, and welcome to the forum.

I'm sorry, I thought somebody with more knowledge regarding your questions would have answered by now. I have no need for most of what you're asking here so I don't know much about it.

Quote:
If I import an SMF, how do I get the Mixer to pick up the initial MIDI volume and Pan commands from the tracks and reflect them in the Mixer's initial settings? How do I get the Mixer's meters to show MIDI output rather than audio?
You might be able to put a FX like ReaControlMIDI on the track and set it up to move the controls. I've never done that so I don't know for sure. I use VSTis, mostly Kontakt, and I just check it out to make sure all the CCs are working.

Quote:
And is there a way on import to have the Track's input and output channels set automatically (to reflect the MIDI channel of the track), rather than having to go and do it manually for each channel..?
Here again I don't know for sure but I don't think so. I've imported quite a bit of midi and I just do it manually. In my case, the imported midi probably wouldn't have the correct channels that I want anyway.

Quote:
My next weird request is, how do you get the little piano keys on the left side of the MIDI Piano Roll editor to play the same MIDI channel as the track? I can have a drum track open, and if I click on the notes, the drums sound fine (so being sent on Ch.10), but clicking in the piano keyboard on the left seems to play some other MIDI channel. Is there a way to set it up so that whatever MIDI channel the track is set to is what the keyboard outputs?
I don't think I've ever had a problem with this. By the time I get in the Midi Editor I've usually got the midi channels I want to use set up in the track routing.

Also, there's a little box down in the right corner of the Midi Editor where you can select a particular channel or set it to "All".

Quote:
Finally (for now!) is there any way to do 'positional' editing? One of my favorite tricks on drum tracks is to be able to say 'select all the snare backbeats (beats on 2&4, for instance in a 4/4 song) and raise their velocities 20' or things like that? When working on drum tracks, it's very handy to do stuff based on the position in the bar, and incredibly time consuming to have to go through an entire piece selecting only the backbeats by hand. Cubase's Logical Editor made stuff like this a snap!
Check out the Event Filter. It's in the upper left corner of the main Midi toolbar. There are ways there to do just what you're asking.
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Old 01-22-2015, 10:54 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diki Ross View Post
My next weird request is, how do you get the little piano keys on the left side of the MIDI Piano Roll editor to play the same MIDI channel as the track? I can have a drum track open, and if I click on the notes, the drums sound fine (so being sent on Ch.10), but clicking in the piano keyboard on the left seems to play some other MIDI channel. Is there a way to set it up so that whatever MIDI channel the track is set to is what the keyboard outputs?
If the MIDI Editor is set to display all MIDI channels, then clicking the piano keys sends notes on MIDI channel 01.

To send them on, say channel 10, change the Editor to display MIDI on channel 10 only, sing the "drop-up" list in the lower right-hand corner.
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Old 01-22-2015, 04:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkStar View Post
If the MIDI Editor is set to display all MIDI channels, then clicking the piano keys sends notes on MIDI channel 01.

To send them on, say channel 10, change the Editor to display MIDI on channel 10 only, sing the "drop-up" list in the lower right-hand corner.
Hi DS, somehow it works different for me.

If I've got my midi track set up and routed to send Channel 2 to to my Kontakt VSTi, that is the channel that's going to play my Kontakt instrument that is set for Channel 2. It don't seem to matter which channel my midi notes are on or what the little box down in the right corner is set to.

Same for the Midi Editor keyboard, it plays the channel that my midi track is routed to.

Heh heh, you know more than I do DS, so maybe you could explain?
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Old 01-22-2015, 05:20 PM   #5
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Yes, you've already identified the answer.

No matter what channel the notes are on in the MIDI clip or what channel is set for display in the MIDI Editor, the notes are switched to Channel 2 by the Send.

Stick a MIDI Monitor on the sending and receiving tracks and you will see that the MIDI channel changes.

----------------------
In my earlier post, I was explaining what goes on in the MIDI Editor only. Diki Ross has not yet asked about routing 'MIDI' tracks to a multi-timbral VSTi.
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Old 02-01-2018, 04:10 PM   #6
Diki Ross
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Sorry for the delay...

If you have a MIDI project split into single channel individual tracks, it would be a boon if the default editor behavior was to have output of the edit window follow the fixed output assign, rather than making us jump through hoops to make sure the little piano key display sends on the same channel. Same deal when penciling in new notes (should always be notes in the channel of the output setting.

If in any doubt, take a look at how Cubase handles MIDI Parts. Simple, intuitive, but still flexible. It also does a great job of, when importing a multitrack SMF, it automatically assigns output MIDI channel to the channel of the data. It seems such an unnecessary step (or 16 of them!) to have to hand select outputs and channels, when that info is embedded in the file itself.

Admittedly, I'm talking about editing MIDI for external gear (using SMF's in keyboards on gigs), VSTi's have different needs. But it's a pretty common scenario, get an SMF, import to Reaper, send to MIDI interface. Reaper seems to over-complicate such a simple thing.
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