Old 02-20-2020, 06:06 AM   #1
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Default Reaper can be recording bad volume automation

From a report in this post in this thread.

Reaper 6.04rc2 and before, Windows 10 x64. Verified with a Presonus Faderport 16 in Studio One mode(via CSI) and the MCU+MCUXT drivers that come with Reaper on both a fully customized Reaper and a fresh portable install. I've asked for further verification from other motor fader users.

Problem
Reaper records wonky volume automation (-edit-) if there is volume automation playing back within the block of tracks covered by a control surface.

IF there is volume automation that is being played back and sent back to the control surface for moving the fader, the newly recorded volume automation on another track that overlaps timewise with previous recordings will be rubbish.

For example, if there's automation on track 6 , your control surface is showing you tracks 1-8, and you record volume automation on track 1,2,3,4,5 or 7 and 8, while the automation on track 6 is in Read,Latch, Latch Preview or Touch mode, and thus a fader on the control surface representing track 6 is moving as a result, the newly recorded volume automation will look as it does in the screenshot(check the session link for an immediate result as well).

If however the control surface is displaying tracks 9-16 for example, and none of the tracks have volume automation on it that could move a fader, and you're recording volume automation on any of the tracks 9-16, it'll record like it does in the upper track in the screenshot.





Also, this 'rectifier'/'shit-quantizer' effect only applies to those parts of your volume automation recordings that time-wise overlap with existing recordings on tracks that fall within the display range of your control surface.



I hope that's clear enough.


Reproduce
  • Create twice the number of tracks your control surface(with moving touch sensitive faders) has.
  • Record some volume automation on one of the tracks.
  • Record some volume automation on one of the tracks that falls in to the block of tracks being displayed by your control surface within the same time range of your first volume automation recording. You should get ugly stuff as shown in the screenshot on the second track.
  • Since this only applies to recorded volume automation that overlaps time-wise with other recorded volume automation that is displayed by a control surface, record some volume automation on another track within the same block of tracks being displayed by your control surface, before, during and after recorded volume automation on another track in the same block.

A second shot to demonstrate that effect for good measure



Session with some zero-audio and the automation tracks (16 kB)
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Last edited by airon; 02-22-2020 at 03:15 PM. Reason: Edited for clarity
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Old 02-20-2020, 08:13 AM   #2
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I've verified this behaviour on a fresh install as well.
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Old 02-21-2020, 05:13 AM   #3
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Verified on both the MCU + MCU_XT driver that comes with Reaper, as well as the CSI driver that uses the Studio One mode of the Faderport 16 controller.

Verfied on both running installs as well as a fresh portable install of 6.04rc2x64 on Windows 10 Pro x64.
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Old 02-21-2020, 01:17 PM   #4
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Additional testing showed that MIDI via actions like Track: Set volume for selected tracks (MIDI CC/OSC only) are not affected.

So this likely narrows it down to control surface plugin input.

Btw, did you also see the discussion Azslow3 and me had about the volume envelope apprently being processed in the antipative fx portion of Reaper engine, the result being here. It was shortly after that, that I discovered the source of this envelope bollocks to top it off.

Hope you fix this reported envelope recording bug as soon as possible. Should I light some candles ?
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Last edited by airon; 02-21-2020 at 02:28 PM.
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Old 02-22-2020, 03:17 PM   #5
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Users of controllers with motorized faders, please try to verify this bug. It could affect a lot of things. I sincerly hope it's the firmware of the Presonus Faderport 16 unit, though it seems rather unlikely. It has been out for a while and been updated a number of times.

Plus, I've seen these volume envelope shapes using the original MCU but wrongly wrote it off to the midi control surface stuff being slow in Reaper somehow. It took time for me to recognize that these overlaps are the most likely problem. As it may turn out, it could be a bit of rubbish in the control surface bits of Reaper itself.
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Old 02-22-2020, 08:08 PM   #6
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Looks like I have to eat my own words again.

After fellow user MixMonkey ran the same test with his Mackie Control Universal to find no flaws, I was starting to think this could be the unit itself, the Presonus Faderport 16.

So I ran the same test with different powered USB hubs, a direct USB line to the machine, with both default stock firmware and the most recent(3.32) on not just Reaper but also Ableton Live and Studio One.

It all resulted in the same data. Whenever a fader is moving, volume automation recordings from other faders become choppy and lose precision.

In Reaper this can be seen by jumping values and value changes just not showing up very often.

Maybe the unit is defective and my low density of volume automation just let me overlook these flaws. I'll have to find out now with Presonus support and probably take it in for servicing.

At least I now know that Reaper captures MCU faders at 30Hz, which is fairly slow but would be fast enough for a lot of things. 33 ms is a rather long time between captures, dont' you think ?

What a waste of time in the end. Damn.
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