MultitrackStudio 8.3 manual
MultitrackStudio
Bremmers Audio Design
Manual
Version 8.3, June 2016
http://www.multitrackstudio.com
Copyright (C) 2001-2016 Bremmers Audio Design.
The content of this manual is subject to change without notice. Although every precaution has been taken in
the preparation of this manual, the author assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions. Neither is any
liability assumed for damages resulting from the use of the information herein.
ZTX Time Stretch/Pitch Shift technology licensed from Zynaptiq GmbH, http://www.zynaptiq.com/ztx/, (c)
Zynaptiq GmbH
Effect presets by Christian C. Thompson, www.christiancthompson.com
VST and ASIO are trademarks of Steinberg Soft- und Hardware GmbH.
Windows and Windows 10/8/7/Vista/XP are trademarks of Microsoft.
Mac, OS X and iPad are trademarks of Apple.
All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
Contents
1. Introduction
l Overview
l Quick Start: Recording
a Song
2. Songs
l Songs
l Song Properties
l Song Versions
l Songlists
3. Transport Control
l Transport Control
l Overview Bar, Markers
and Cycling
l VariSpeed
4. Recording
l Recording
l Audio Recording
l MIDI Recording
l Multiple Takes
l Alternate Takes
l Partial Takes
l Punch In/Out
l Sound on Sound
recording
l Cycle Recording
l Delay Before
Recording
l Click Track
l Monitoring
l Practice Mode
5. Playback and Mixing
l Playback and Mixing
l Tracks
l Groups
l Effect Returns
l Master
l Labels
l Collapsing Mixer
Sections
l Mixer Section
Templates
6. Mastering and Mixdown
l Mastering
l Preparing MIDI Tracks
l Offline Mixdown
l Realtime Mixdown
7. Effects
l Effects
l Auto Wah
l Automated Fader
l Band Effect
l Chorus
l Compressor
l Convolutor
l Deesser
l Doubler
l Dynamics
l Echo
l EQ
l Exciter
l Flanger
l Guitar Amp
l Master Limiter
l Mid/Side Effect
l Multi Effect
l Multiband Compressor
l Noise Gate
l Parallel Effect
l Phase Inverter
l Phaser
l Reverb
l Rotor
l Saturator
l Stereo Effect
l Stereo Imager
l Transposer
l Tremolo
l Tuner
l Vibrato
l Vocal Tuner
l VST Plugins
l AU Plugins
l DX Plugins
l Automatic Delay
Compensation
l External Sidechain
Routing
8. MIDI Instruments
l MIDI Instruments
l MultitrackStudio
Instruments
l Wheel Organ
l SoundFont Player
l Sampler
l Matrix Sampler
l External MIDI
Instrument
l VSTi Plugins
l AUi Plugins
l DXi Plugins
9. Automation
l Automation
l Mixer Automation
l Effect Automation
10. Editing
l Editing
l Editing Tracks
l Editing Audio Tracks
l Vocal Pitch Correction
l Editing MIDI Tracks
l Editing Notes
l Pianoroll Editor
l Score Editor
l Drum Editor
l Editing Controllers
l MIDI Pattern Editing
l Tempo/Time Signature
Editing
l Song Editor
l Multi MIDI Editor
l Multitrack Editing
l Chords and Lyrics
11. Audio and MIDI Devices
l Devices
l ASIO Drivers
l Windows Drivers
l Windows XP Drivers
l Mac Audio/MIDI Devices
l MIDI Output Control
l Compensating for driver
issues
12. Remote Control
l Remote Control
l Remote Control Settings
l Remote Control Bar
l MultitrackStudio Remote
l Phone/tablet Web
Browser
13. Audio and MIDI Files
l Audio Files
l MIDI Files
14. Touch and Pen
l Touch and Pen
l Touch
l Pen
l Microsoft Surface
15. Keyboard Shortcuts
l Keyboard Shortcuts
(Windows)
l Keyboard Shortcuts
(Mac)
16. Preferences
17. Tools
18. Miscellaneous
l Patch Editor
l Meters
l Dither
l Patchmap Files
19. Requirements
20. Troubleshooting
1 Introduction
1.1 Overview
MultitrackStudio is a virtual multitrack studio. You can record and play audio and MIDI tracks, edit them, and
mixdown to stereo.
The straightforward and uncluttered user-interface has been designed with tape-based recording in mind.
Mixer sections are oriented horizontally (as opposed to the more familiar vertical layout), allowing them to
include an editor as well. The editing tools are aimed at correcting mistakes. MIDI tracks have been made to
look like audio tracks as much as possible.
The large number of high quality effects and the built-in General MIDI compatible MultitrackStudio
Instruments make it possible to do software-only mixing and mastering. All track, mixer and effect settings
can be stored in a song file and recalled any time.
Using a songlist you can play a sequence of songs. This way you can preview your CD project without
having to mix the individual songs down to stereo files first.
MultitrackStudio features a context-sensitive help system: pressing the F1 key (Windows) / Shift-Command-?
(Mac) will show help on the item the mouse points to.
The main window
MultitrackStudio main window
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7. Midi Instrument slot
Menu buttons
Recording options 8. Audio track with its editor opened
Editing options
9. Effect slots
Start/Stop button 10. Effect Return section
Overview bar
11. Master section
MIDI track
12. Garbage Bin
Tracks (6,8) contain audio or MIDI files. Tracks can be switched to playback or record mode using their Play
and Rec buttons. Clicking the transport's Start/Stop button (4) will start recording / playing back all tracks
simultaneously. Effects can be loaded in effect slots (9) by clicking the slot's down arrow. MIDI Instruments
can be loaded in MIDI Instrument slots (7) in the same way. Tracks and effects etc. can be removed by
dragging and dropping them onto the Garbage Bin (12).
The complete setup can be saved as a song using the Song menu (1). The Mix Down menu's 'Mix down to
audio file' option can be used to mix the song down to a single audio file.
1.2 Quick Start: Recording a Song
Note: after installing the program you can go to the Studio menu's Devices option to select the audio and
MIDI devices you want to use.
Follow these steps to record a song and make a CD:
Step 1: Make new Song
Make a new (empty) Song using the Song->New menu option. A new (empty) folder is created automatically.
Step 2: Add Click Track (optional)
If you're recording a song from scratch you'll probably want to add a click track (metronome). Use the Add
Track menu's Click Track option to do this. Note that you can tap the tempo on the space bar.
Step 3: Add audio or MIDI track
Add a Track with an empty audio or MIDI file using the Add Track menu. Use a mono audio file if you're
recording a mono source like a microphone.
Step 4: Record the track
Click the track's Rec button. If you're recording audio a Recording Level Fader now appears at the top of the
window (provided your sound device supports this). Alternatively you can click the Input button to get acces
to recording level controls.
Note: depending on the sound device there may be a dedicated software control panel or hardware knobs to
set the recording level. Please refer to the sound device's manual.
Now you can start recording by starting the Transport. You will hear the Click Track, which was created in
step 2, while recording. Stop the transport when you're done.
Step 5: Record more tracks
Add more tracks (using the Add Track menu) and record them (repeat step 3 and 4). You will hear the
previously recorded tracks while recording a new one. At this stage it is quite common to add Reverb to
vocal tracks using an Effect Return section.
Step 6: Mix down to master file
Now you can fine-tune the individual track's volume levels and add any effects. If your song sounds fine you
can mix it down to a single .wav file using the Mix Down menu's Mix down to audio file option. This new file
can be used for burning a CDR.
Note (Pro edition only): make sure it's a 16 bit stereo file if you want to burn it to CDR. CD burning software
typically can't read 24 bit (or higher) files.
Step 7: Play back master file (optional)
Use the Mix Down menu's Playback mixed down file option to play back and verify the master file.
Step 8: Burn CDR
Now you can burn the file recorded in step 6 to a CDR using the software that came with your CD-writer.
2 Songs
2.1 Songs
MultitrackStudio project files are called "songs". A song file (.hdr file extension) contains all information that
is required to reproduce the mix you made. This includes:
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The number of tracks and other mixer sections.
The position of all their knobs, effects, names of audio/MIDI files etc.
Sample Rate used
Song Comments
Chords and Lyrics
Markers
A song file does not include any audio or MIDI data, it contains only references to the audio/MIDI files used
by the tracks (ie. these audio/MIDI files are needed in order to play back the song). All filenames that are
stored in the song file have a relative path whenever possible. This way projects can easily be moved to
other drives or folders.
Note: The devices used for playing audio and MIDI are NOT part of the song file. This way songs can be
used on any computer.
Mac note: Finder will show the song files as Radiance files. If you want to be able to open songs by doubleclicking you can Ctrl-click a song, choose Get Info and change the "Open with" field to MultitrackStudio.
The currently opened song is shown in the main window's title bar. '(R)' indicates the file is opened as read
only.
The Song menu
The Song menu contains the following options (note that some options are described in other chapters):
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New: In the New Song window you can type the
name of the new song. It will be placed in a folder
having the same name automatically unless you
browse for a folder yourself.
The Template box (Pro edition only) lets you apply
a template. The Template box also allows for
creating new templates: the Save current as
template... option creates a template based on the
current song. Templates include almost everything
New Song window (Pro edition)
related to the song, except for the audio and MIDI
data in the tracks. New songs will have empty audio/MIDI files.
There's a special "Identical to current" template which creates a new song identical to the current
one. This can be convenient for live multitrack recording.
Open: Open a song file.
Save: Save the song file and all MIDI files and edited audio files (.aem files) opened in tracks.
Rename: Rename the song.
Close: Close the song.
Comments: Read or write text which is stored in the song file. You can use this to document the
project.
Import Song: Import a zipped song (ie. a song exported using the Export Song option).
The Song menu offers several export options:
Export MIDI Tracks
This tool merges any combination of the currently loaded MIDI tracks in a single MIDI file. It's intended for
moving your MIDI tracks to third party notation software. The current versions of the tracks are used (ie. the
MIDI files are not read from disk), so you can temporarily edit MIDI channels, or quantize tracks if necessary.
If a MIDI channel is used by multiple tracks a message will appear. You can choose 'Export as-is' or 'Merge
Tracks'. The first option is best if the file is to be imported in a notation program etc. The latter option can be
used if the file is meant to be played back by a (General MIDI) media player. Note that you'll have to make
sure there's just one track playing notes to a particar MIDI channel at any time.
Export tracks as audio files
Note: this feature is available in the Pro edition only.
This tool exports the tracks as audio files. You can use this if you're
going to have your tracks mixed by someone who doesn't use
MultitrackStudio. Audio tracks and MIDI tracks using a software
instrument can be exported. Any audio effects in the track effect slots
are not included.
Bit Depth can be "Optimal" or "32 bit float". "Optimal" uses the lowest
bitdepth that won't cause any loss of quality for each track.
Note: if a MIDI track has multiple streams only the first stream will be
exported. You can click the track's file name box and choose Split
Streams to split it into multiple single-stream tracks.
Export Song
"Export Song" saves the song in a .zip file. This makes it easy to move
"Export tracks as audio files" window
the song to another computer or to iPad. The zip file only contains files
that are required to playback the song, ie. the files found by the Clean up Song Folder tool aren't included.
Exporting to MultitrackStudio for iPad
Zipped MultitrackStudio songs can be imported in MultitrackStudio for iPad, provided you take care of a
couple of things:
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MIDI files containing multiple streams (instruments) are not supported. Click the track's file name box
and choose 'Split streams' first.
.mpt files are not supported. Save these tracks as .mid files first.
There can't be more than 16 tracks (32 tracks if Extension Pack is present).
Song samplerate can't be higher than 48 kHz.
MultitrackStudio for iPad doesn't support the following features (but the song will be usable nonetheless):
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No Groups.
Only one Effect Return.
Just two output channels (Song Options --> 'Outputs' setting).
Just three effect slots per mixer section.
No VST/AU/DX plugins.
No Sampler or Wheel Organ.
No Doubler, Exciter, Mid/Side Effect, Multi Effect, Parallel Effect or Stereo Effect effects.
Convolutor, Dynamics, Phase Inverter, Transposer and Vocal Tuner are part of Pro Extension.
No sidechaining (Pro Extension adds sidechaining with Dynamics effect).
Automation is part of Pro Extension.
The zip file can be moved to iPad using iTunes File Sharing.
2.2 Song Properties
In the Song Properties window, reached via the Song
menu's Properties option, you can change mixer and
samplerate settings. It also shows file related
information.
The Sample Rate box specifies the sample rate to be
used for audio recording/playback. Usually the default
value (44.1 kHz) will be used, as this is the value used
on CDs. The bottom entry of the drop down list lets
you make the current value the one to be used for new
songs.
Outputs (Pro edition only) determines the number of
Song Properties window
audio outputs. This is always an even number, the
minimum value is two (stereo), the maximum value is 140. If the value is greater than two all Group and
Effect Return sections will have an Output Selector. Note that the Outputs value can exceed the number of
outputs the audio device actually has. Any mixer sections using these non-existing outputs will not be heard.
The window also shows some non-editable properties. These include:
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The total playing time of the song
The total occupied disk space
The file name, playing length and occupied disk space of each track's file (via the More button)
Clean up Song Folder
The Clean up Song Folder tool analyzes the folder that contains the current song, and lists all
MultitrackStudio related files which are not required to play back a song file. You can delete these files in
order to preserve disk space.
Note: Any alternate or partial takes appearing in a track's file options menu appear in the list, and can be
deleted. Once deleted the take will no longer be available.
Note: song version files (.hdrversion) and any tracks used by the versions appear in the list as well. If you
delete audio files used by a version this version will no longer play back correctly.
2.3 Song Versions
Versions of the song can be created, and reverted to, later. These versions include the song file and the
MIDI and .aem files opened in the tracks.
Typical applications of versions include:
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Create a version before making major changes to the song, so you can revert to the old version if it's
not such a good idea after all.
Try different mixes and store as versions. Note that you can not only change mixer settings, but edit
audio and MIDI tracks as well.
Create a version of any mixes you send to someone, just in case they later feel the old one was better.
Create Version
The Song menu's Create Version option pops up the Create Version dialog which lets you type a name for
the version to be created. If there are modifications in the song which haven't been saved yet you can
choose whether you want to include the modifications in the version or not. This can come in handy if you
open a song and start tweaking the mix: if you think you're onto something good you can still create a
version of the song as it was when you opened it, just in case the new mix appears to be not so good after
all.
Revert to Version
The Song menu's Revert to Version item lists all available versions. Tooltips show information about the
versions, like the date it was created. You can revert to a version by clicking it. If there's no version that
equals the song in its current state a version equaling the current state will be created. These automatically
created versions are named "Autosave Version 1" etc.
Autosave
Some versions are created automatically:
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Autosave (safety backup): This version is created every 15 minutes. If the computer crashes you can
open the song again and revert to this version in order to minimize the amount of work lost. The
version is created when the transport is stopped.
Autosave (discarded version): This version is created if you choose to discard the changes when the
song is closed. If you regret this you can open the song again and revert to this version.
Note 1: Autosave versions aren't created until the song has been saved for the first time.
Note 2: Audio files themselves are not stored in the version files, so if you edit an audio file using a third
party editor all versions using that file will be affected. You can make a copy of a file and edit the copy to
avoid this.
Note 3: The versions mechanism assumes there's only one song in a folder (ie. it assumes every versions it
finds in the song's folder is a version of the current song). This is likely the case with MultitrackStudio 5 or
newer, but you might want to make sure this is the case with songs you created with older versions before
reverting to a version.
Note 4: Some third-party demo version VST/AU/DX plugins pop up a 'demo limitation' message window
when the plugin settings are written to file. These messages will appear whenever a version is created.
Under the hood
A version file (.hdrversion file extension) is a song file which also contains the .mid and .aem track data.
2.4 Songlists
Note that using songlists is not required.
A songlist file (.lml file extension) contains references to song files. When a playing song is finished, the next
song can automatically be opened and played. When the last song is finished the transport will be stopped.
Creating or opening a songlist
The Songlist menu is not visible if no songlist is opened. The Song menu's Songlist item contains New and
Open options. After using one of these the Songlist bar will appear.
Songlist Bar (3 songs)
The Songlist Bar will be placed at the top of the window. A button with the song's file name is shown for each
song in the songlist, the yellow one being the song currently opened. Clicking a button will open the
corresponding song. The songs can be reordered by dragging and dropping the buttons. Opening or
reordering songs is not possible while the transport is running.
Songs can be added and removed using the Song menu: New or Open will add a song to the Songlist, Close
will remove the current song from the songlist and Rename will update the name of the current song.
The Play All button determines whether all songs will be played back consecutively. It's on by default. You
can turn it off if you're going to do some work on a song, in order to avoid going the next song inadvertently.
The Songlist menu
The Songlist bar contains the Songlist menu, which offers the following options:
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New, Open, Save, Save As, Rename, Close
Comments: Read or write text which is stored in the songlist file. You can use this to document the
project.
Songlist Properties: Show the songlist's properties. This includes:
¡ The song file name, playing length and occupied disk space of each song
¡ The total playing time of the songlist
¡ The total occupied disk space
Collecting the songlist properties might take a few seconds as all songs have to be analyzed.
3 Transport
3.1 Transport
The transport controls are similar to a tape recorder's transport controls. There's a position indicator and
home (to start of song), rewind, fast forward and start/stop buttons.
The transport controls
When the transport is started all tracks that are in playback mode will play back, and all tracks that are in
record mode will record. If there are no tracks that are in either playback or record mode the transport will not
start.
Tip: you can hit the space bar instead of clicking the start/stop button.
Position Indicator
The position indicator shows the current transport position. It can show either hours:minutes:seconds or
bar:beat. On clicking the position indicator a menu appears which allows for choosing
hours:minutes:seconds or bar:beat. The bar:beat option is available only if at least one track contains a MIDI
file. That's because tempo information is stored in MIDI files.
After clicking the position indicator menu's Type Value option a new position can be typed.
Hours:minutes:seconds values (separated by colons) are interpreted right to left, so you don't have to enter
hours or minutes if the time you enter is less than 60 seconds. But if you want to enter minutes you should
enter seconds as well. Zero values can be omitted (you can enter 12: instead of 12:00).
Bar:beat values are interpreted left to right, so you can enter plain bar numbers easily (12 instead of 12:1).
The seconds and beat values can be real numbers (like 1.462). Press Enter to accept the new value, or Esc
to cancel the operation.
The position indicator's maximum value is 10 hours at 44.1 kHz samplerate (4 hours and 30 minutes at 96
kHz).
3.2 Overview Bar, Markers and Cycling
The Overview Bar is closely related to the transport. It is a large slider indicating the current transport
position. The slider thumb can be moved using the mouse. Double clicking it starts the transport, clicking it
again stops it. The overview bar also shows the markers.
Overview Bar with three markers, green triangle is most recent start position
The most recent transport start position appears in the upper half as a green triangle. If you click it the
transport moves back to that position, double clicking it starts the transport at that position.
Markers
Markers are used to name certain parts of a song (for instance Intro, Verse 1, Verse 2, Solo, Verse 3).
Navigating through a song becomes significantly easier using markers. The position indicator menu features
an Add Marker option which adds a marker at the current transport position. If there's a marker at the
current position a Delete Marker option is presented instead.
Alternatively markers can be added by rightclicking the overview bar. Most editors can be used to add
markers by right-clicking the time grid-area (where the needle handle lives) as well. An easy way to add
markers "on-the-fly" is to press Ctrl+M at the appropriate times while the song is playing. Ctrl+M takes the
grid snap setting into account, so accurately adding markers on-the fly is easy when using a grid spacing of
one bar while the "Snap" button is engaged.
The markers appearing on the overview bar can be left-clicked to jump to the corresponding transport
position. They can be right-clicked to delete, rename, quantize to the grid, move it to the current transport
position, or type a new position. Renaming can also be done by double clicking the marker. Markers can be
dragged to a new position.
Cycle Transport
Cycling transport can be started by performing a click-and-drag operation on the overview bar thumb:
1.
2.
3.
4.
Click the thumb
Immediately click the thumb again, but this time keep the mouse button down.
Now move the thumb to the point where you want the cycle to end.
Release the mouse button.
Note: Step 1 and 2 must be performed quickly (at "doubleclick speed").
Alternatively you can keep the Alt key (Windows) / Option key (Mac) down while moving the thumb.
The position indicator menu features Set Cycle Start/Set Cycle End options.
The Overview Bar shows the cycle region. It appears dimmed while the transport isn't actually cycling. You
can click the start button while keeping the C key down to cycle this region again.
Overview Bar showing cycle region
3.3 VariSpeed
Note: this feature is available in the Pro edition only.
VariSpeed acts like a tape recorder's speed control. An important application is recording
instruments which aren't in tune with existing tracks. Speed Only mode can be used to
VariSpeed control
slow the music down to make transcription or practicing easier. The VariSpeed controls are
hidden by default, they can be made visible by clicking the position indicator and choosing "Show VariSpeed
Control".
The box offers a choice of several VariSpeed modes:
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Off: No VariSpeed
Tape style - 1 semitone (T1): Change pitch up to 1 semitone, speed changes accordingly.
Tape style - 2 semitones (T2): Change pitch up to 2 semitones, speed changes accordingly.
Tape style - half speed (TH): Run at half speed (+/- 1 semitone). Audio tracks and software
instruments sound one octave lower at half speed, External MIDI Instruments don't.
Speed Only (SO): Change speed (50%..150%) without changing pitch. Recording isn't possible using
Speed Only mode, VariSpeed will be turned off automatically if you try to do so.
The rotary knob controls speed / pitch. It can be turned while the transport is running, but not while
recording.
The tape-style modes work exactly like a tape recorder's speed control: if speed increases pitch goes up, if
speed decreases pitch goes down. If you want to record an instrument and its pitch is different from your
song's pitch you can use VariSpeed to change the song's pitch. After recording the track you can switch off
VariSpeed and the recorded track's pitch will be equal to the song's pitch.
VariSpeed also works with MIDI tracks. Tracks using an External MIDI Instrument are detuned using Pitch
Bend messages (the pitch bend range is assumed to be 2 semitones).
Note that VariSpeed consumes CPU power, so it should be switched off when it's not needed.
4 Recording
4.1 Recording
The first thing to do when starting to record a track is to add a track with an audio or MIDI file that will contain
the recording. You can do this using the Add Track menu.
Add Audio Track window (Pro edition)
Add MIDI Track window
If the track contains an audio file (like the default .wav format), the track will record audio (using a
microphone or a line input), if it contains a MIDI file (.mid) the track will record MIDI (usually a keyboard).
See the Audio files and MIDI files paragraphs for more information on supported file types.
To record a track you should click its Rec button (it turns red) and start the transport.
If you want to wait a certain amount of time until recording starts (to give you time to walk to the mic for
instance) you can use the Delay Before Recording option.
Recording options
Four buttons at the top of the main window provide access to the most frequently used recording options:
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Input: Show the Windows audio recording settings (Windows) / System Preferences audio setings
(Mac). If your audio device comes with a control panel application you can click down arrow menu's
"Browse for device control panel..." option and open the control panel. Now you can access the control
panel via the down arrow menu's "Device control panel" option. If "Button shows device control panel"
is checked it will pop up on clicking the Input button itself.
Mon: Soft Monitoring
Punch: Punch In/Out
SoS: Sound on Sound recording
A Recording Level Fader appears next to the Input button while an audio track's Rec button is engaged.
This fader sets the level of all input channels. Use the Input button if you need to set per-channel levels. The
Recording Level Fader only appears if the sound device supports this.
The Rec button pops up the Recording Options menu which offers more options. The buttons move to the
menu automatically if the main window is too small to show them all. The menu's options are described in
the following paragraphs.
Recording options, with Recording Level Fader
4.2 Audio Recording
If you want to record using a microphone you should connect it to your sound device's Mic input. Keyboards,
mic preamps or mixer outputs should be connected to the Line input.
Input assignment
A small down pointing triangle appears on the right hand side of an audio track's
Rec button. Clicking this triangle pops up the input channel selector. The input
channel is displayed on the Rec button itself. The input channel selector features
small level meters if at least one audio track Rec button is engaged.
Recording Levels
The Level Meter starts working upon clicking the track's Rec button (it turns red).
You can now set the recording level. The way this can be done this depends on
your sound device. A Recording Level Fader appears next to the Input button if
the sound device supports this. The Input button itself may take you to perchannel level settings if the device supports this. If the sound device comes with
Input channel selector
its own control panel you can use that. If you have a mic preamp or a hardware
mixer it's more convenient to use this to set the recording level (set the sound device's level to its maximum
value).
The recording level is OK if the meter reaches the yellow section during signal peaks.
Note: driving the recording level meters into the red section is definitely a bad thing in digital audio.
Under the hood
The level meters read 0.1% above the actual recording level while recording in order to make it possible for
the first red segment to light when reaching the clipping level. Otherwise no red segment would ever light as
the Audio In Device cannot output data above its clipping level.
Live Multitrack Recording
Note: these features are available in the Pro edition only.
The Pro edition offers two features that make live multitrack recording easier:
1. The Add Audio Track window has a '#' box which holds the number of tracks to create, so you can add
multiple tracks in one go. The box appears automatically if the audio device has at least 4 input
channels. You can press Ctrl+N to make it appear anyway (this also works in the Add MIDI Track
window).
2. The Song menu's New window has a Template box. The "Identical to current" template creates an
empty copy of the current song. A new folder will be created, with new audio/MIDI files and a new song
file. This feature can be used to record another take of a performance.
Tip: you can toggle all Rec buttons in one go by clicking one while the Ctrl key (Windows) / Command key
(Mac) is pressed.
Record Master Out
Note: you can use the Mix Down menu's 'Mix down to audio file' option instead.
An audio track will record the output of the Master section (or simply the output if the Master section has
been removed) if the Master Out option is selected in the Input channel selector. This feature can be used to
mix the song to down stereo (see mastering).
This feature can also be used to 'bounce' tracks in order to reduce the number of tracks used by the song.
For example: a five track backing vocal group can be bounced to a single track by recording the five tracks to
a new track (temporarily turn of all other tracks, and bypass any effects in the Master section). Having done
this, the five original tracks can be turned off (using their Play buttons) and the new track can be used
instead.
In a similar way this option can be used to 'freeze' a track that uses effects that require a lot of processing
power. The new (audio) track will include the effects, thereby freeing up the processing power used by them.
Recording Practice Mode tracks
The input channel selector features a 'Practice Mode tracks' option. Using this option you can record a track
which is in 'manual practice mode' to an audio track. You can use this if you want to play a VSTi plugin and
record the performance as audio rather than MIDI, for example.
You can set it up like this:
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Doubleclick a track's Play button to switch it to manual practice mode.
If it's an audio track: engage the Mon button to switch on Soft Monitoring.
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Add an audio track, set its input to 'Practice Mode tracks' and engage its Rec button.
Now you can hear it's working and you can start the transport.
The audio track that's recording isn't 'soft monitored' (you'd hear the practice mode track twice if it did).
Note: this doesn't work with VariSpeed.
4.3 MIDI Recording
MIDI tracks always record the MIDI In Device(s) and/or the Onscreen MIDI Keyboard, regardless of the type
of MIDI instrument being used. If the Autodetect Keyboard option is enabled (default) your keyboard's MIDI
channel will be detected automatically. If necessary you can set the channel used in the instrument's user
interface.
The Pro edition features a built-in MIDI merger that merges all data that's being received on any of the MIDI
In Devices (up to four of them can be used, see devices). Make sure your keyboards are using different
channels in order to avoid problems.
You can undo MIDI-recording using the track editor's Undo button.
Note: If the MIDI file contains multiple streams ('tracks' in MIDI terms) all streams will be recording. Using
multiple streams is not recommended.
Onscreen MIDI Keyboard
The onscreen keyboard can be used to play MIDI instruments, it works just like a MIDI In Device. Not only
does it offer a keyboard layout, but drum, chords, matrix and various string layouts as well. It can be made
visible using the button in the bottom-right corner of the main window.
Keyboard
Chords
Drum
Matrix
Bass
The onscreen keyboard provides suitable shortcut keys for various international keyboard layouts
automatically. The number of keys which can be played simultaneously solely depends on the keyboard
hardware, three keys typically isn't a problem. The mouse works too, but it isn't really suited to playing music.
The slider on the left controls volume (MIDI controller 7). It can be assigned to any other controller (including
note velocity and pitch) using the Options button.
The Chords layout allows for playing chords with a single finger. It offers 12 keys for major chords and 12
keys for minor chords. You can use the 6/7/Maj7 buttons on the left to add a note to the chord. The vertical
slider sets "the position of the keyboard player's hand on the keyboard".
String instruments can be capoed using the Options button.
The drum layout uses GM instrument mapping.
The Matrix layout can be used with the Matrix Sampler. The pad mapping conforms to the Matrix Sampler's
matrix mapping. The 8 pads on the left correspond to the lower 8 cells of the Matrix Sampler, the 8 pads on
the right correspond to the upper 8 cells.
Note: the onscreen keyboard's timing may not be as accurate as you'd expect from a real MIDI keyboard.
Using the MIDI keyboard with touchscreens
Note: touchscreen support is available for Windows only.
The onscreen keyboard can be used with a touchscreen. A multi-touch screen lets you play multiple notes
simultaneously, and also makes monophonic parts easier to play. The number of fingers which can be used
simultaneously solely depends on the touchscreen and its driver. Multi-touch support requires Windows 7 or
newer.
The keyboard shortcuts are not visible in touchscreen mode.
The slider on the left can be moved while playing the keyboard if you're using a multi-touch screen.
The keyboard and string layouts support finger vibrato when using a touchscreen. The Options button lets
you turn it on. The string instruments support string bends, this requires a multi-touch screen. Only
monophonic parts can be played while finger vibrato or string bends are enabled. Both finger vibrato and
string bends generate MIDI pitch events.
The drum layout allows for performing hihat pedal movements on a touchscreen: put a finger on the HH
Open pad to hit it with a stick. Then move the finger to the HH Close pad to close it with the pedal.
Tip: you may find your multi-touch screen responds slowly to a single finger, and any fingers you add are
detected much faster. In this case you can keep one finger on the screen while playing the keyboard, and
use other fingers to actually play notes.
Keyboard Splitter
Keyboard Splitter window
If you want to play two instruments using only one keyboard you can use the Keyboard Splitter, which is
available from the Recording options menu. The Keyboard Splitter splits a MIDI keyboard in a left and right
hand part. MIDI messages on one channel are intercepted and separated. All notes below the split note are
routed to the left hand channel. All other notes and all controller events are routed to the right hand channel.
Each output channel can be transposed up to three octaves up or down.
Autodetect Keyboard
If the Recording options menu's Autodetect Keyboard option is active (this is the default setting) recording
MIDI tracks will respond to messages on all channels. This means that you won't have to worry about the
actual MIDI channel being used, it just works.
The Autodetect Keyboard feature will disable itself automatically if there are multiple recording MIDI tracks
and they're not all recording the same channel. This means that you won't have to turn it off in order to be
able to record two tracks using two keyboards.
You can turn off Autodetect Keyboard if data is coming in on multiple MIDI channels and you want to record
just one of them.
4.4 Multiple Takes
It typically requires more than one take to get a track right. MultitrackStudio offers two ways to record
multiple takes:
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Alternate Takes: a new file is created, the existing file is closed and the new one opened.
Partial Takes: the recording is recorded to a new file. When the transport is stopped the part is pasted
in the existing track. It appears as a tweakable edit, so you can move or resize the new part.
There are basically two approaches to multiple take recordings:
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Use alternate takes and decide which parts to use afterwards ("track comping"):
Record some takes until you think all parts are played OK at least once. Then use the track's file
options menu to load the takes one by one to determine which is the best. Other takes can be loaded
in new tracks via rightclicking them in the file options menu. Then the part you want to copy can be
dragged from the track's editor to the track containing the best take. Note that track comping using
partial takes is possible as well. Clicking one in the file options menu opens it in a new track.
Use partial or punch in takes and make all decisions immediately:
Record a full take, and then record partial takes over the weak parts. You can select the part first and
then record it (punch in recording), or you can record the part and then tweak the selected part in the
editor to only contain the part you want (partial take). If the new take is not successful you can use the
track editor's Undo button and try again.
4.5 Alternate Take
Using the Alternate Take option from the Recording Options menu, you can quickly create a new file and
set up the track for recording a new take of the last recorded track. This is what happens:
1. The last record Track's File Options Menu's Alternate Take option is executed.
2. The transport's position rewinds to the position the last recording started.
If you keep down the Ctrl key (Windows) / Command key (Mac) while clicking the Alternate Take menu item
a new track will be created. This is what happens:
1. The last recorded track's Play and Rec buttons are deactivated.
2. A new track is added and switched to Record mode.
3. A file is created having the same name as the last recorded file, but with a number added. If the name
ended with a number, that number is incremented.
4. The transport's position rewinds to the position the last recording started.
You can keep down the Shift key while clicking to keep the transport from rewinding.
Invoking Alternate Take automatically clears the Punch button.
4.6 Partial Takes
If you record to a track which already contains data the new part becomes a
partial take.
The recorded part appears as a tweakable edit in the track's editor, so you can
move and resize it to make it fit if necessary. The track editor can also be used
to undo the recording. After undoing the file containing the partial take is still
available from the track's File Options menu.
If it's an audio track an .aem file will be created if the track isn't using one
already.
Partial takes appear on the track's file options menu if the take they're
recorded in is expanded (see picture). Clicking one will open it in a new track.
The menu shows which part of the song is covered by a partial take in gray.
The vertical blue line represents the current transport position.
A track's File Options Menu
Under the hood
Partial audio take files are BWF (Broadcast Wave File) files. This is a .wav file with additional information on
where the starting point is. MultitrackStudio discards the bext chunk unless the words "MultitrackStudio
Partial Take" are in the Description field.
Partial MIDI take files are just plain MIDI files.
4.7 Punch In/Out
Punch in/out recordings are a special kind of partial takes. You can select the part to record beforehand, and
you'll hear the existing track before and after this selected part. The track's editor is used to define the part
being recorded (see selecting a part). This should be done before recording starts. The new recording
becomes a tweakable edit, so you can modify the punch in/out points afterwards.
If a MIDI track has multiple streams (not recommended) all streams will use the punch in/out points defined
by the track's main editor.
Punch in/out recording can be activated using the Punch button at the top of the main window.
When the transport is started MultitrackStudio will make sure the transport position is at least one bar before
the start of the punch region. The transport position will be moved if necessary. If the editor grid is not in bars
transport position will be moved to at least 2 seconds before the start of the punch region.
The existing track, before and after the punch-in region, is audible during punch in/out recording. Invisible
copies of software instruments and/or effects are used for this, hence it won't work with demo versions of
VST/AU/DX plugins which are limited to a single instance or can't save their settings.
The software instrument, or the recorded audio signal if Soft Monitoring is active, is audible in the punch-in
region only by default. Turning on the Recording Options menu's Full Punch In/Out Monitoring option
makes your performance audible all the time. It will also pan the existing track to the other side, so if you pan
the track to one side before starting punch-in recording you'll hear the existing track on one side, and the
performance you're recording on the other side. This can be a convenient way of working if you're using
headphones.
Punch-In Recording step-by-step
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Open the editor of the track you want to record.
Select the part you want to record in the editor.
Make sure the Punch button at the top of the screen is red.
Make sure the track's Rec button is red.
Start the transport.
Record the part and stop the transport when done.
Now you can resize the selected part in the editor if necessary. You can also use the EDIT button and
change the punched-in part's volume etc.
4.8 Sound on Sound recording
Sound on Sound recording lets you record without erasing the existing part (ie. the recording is added to the
existing part). This can be used to add some notes to an existing MIDI part. It also works with audio. The
existing part is audible, except when using an External MIDI Instrument.
Sound on Sound recording can be turned on/off using the SoS button at the top of the window.
After stopping the transport the recording appears in the track's editor as a tweakable edit, so you can resize
the selected part, undo the recording or use the editor's Edit button to change the recording's volume etc.
Note that only the newly recorded part is affected by these actions, the original part remains untouched.
4.9 Cycle Recording
Using cycle recording you can record multiple takes automatically. It also works with punch-in recording.
Cycle Recording step-by-step
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Move the transport position to the point where you want to start recording.
Make sure the track's Rec button is red.
Click-and-drag the Overview Bar thumb or the track editor's time bar thumb (see Cycle Transport) and
move it to the right. Release the mouse button when you've reached the point where you want to stop
recording. The transport will now start.
When you think you've recorded a good performance stop the transport.
Now the takes are available from the track's File Options Menu (the small button below the file name
box). You can open a take in a new track by pressing the Shift key while clicking the mouse. You'll
typically want to copy the best parts to one track. It's best to start with the track you think is best. Then
copy better parts from other tracks to this track. This can be done easily if you keep the Shift key down
while dragging the part from one track's editor to another. The Shift key prevents the part from moving
left or right.
Cycle Punch-In Recording step-by-step
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Open the editor of the track you want to record.
Select the part you want to record in the editor. Note that the cycled punch-in recordings won't be
available as tweakable edits, so you should make sure the start and end points are in silent or
otherwise suitable parts.
Move the transport position to the point where you want to start playback. This will typically be at least
a couple of seconds before the point where you want the punch in recording to start.
Make sure the Punch button at the top of the screen is red.
Make sure the track's Rec button is red.
Click-and-drag the Overview Bar thumb or the track editor's time bar thumb (see Cycle Transport) and
move it to the right. Release the mouse button when you've reached the point where you want to stop
recording (make sure the part you're going to record is in the cycle region). The transport will now start.
When you think you've recorded a good performance stop the transport.
Now you can use the editor's Undo and Redo buttons to select the best version.
4.10 Delay Before Recording
Delay Before Recording window
The Delay Before Recording window has several options that can be useful when you are recording on your
own. Delay Before Recording allows you to walk to your guitar/microphone etc. before recording starts.
There are two ways of doing this:
1. Wait: The transport simply waits for a specified number of seconds to elapse.
2. Wait for MIDI In event: The transport waits for a MIDI Note or Controller event on the MIDI In port.
This works for audio recording as well. If you have a MIDI sustain pedal you can use this to start the
transport. Any channel on the MIDI In port can be used to start the transport.
Note: the settings are used only if there is at least one track in record mode.
4.11 Add Click Track
The Add Track menu's Click Track option can be used to add a click track (metronome) to the song.
Add Click Track window
The Tempo section specifies the tempo to use. Current uses the current tempo, this option can only be
selected if the song contains at least one MIDI track. Using the BPM option you can specify a new tempo.
You can click a new tempo in the Tap tempo box. Alternatively you can play the tempo on the space bar.
Length is the length of the click track in hours : minutes : seconds format.
The Sound section specifies the drum instrument (MIDI note) and MIDI Instrument to use. If you plan on
adding a drum track using an editor later, then it's a good idea to use the MIDI Instrument you'll be using for
the drums in order to avoid any timing differences. After changing a Sound property a Store as default
button appears in the bottom-left corner. You can click this button to remember the current settings.
Bar Accents increases the volume level of the first beat in every bar. Other subtle accents may be added as
well, depending on the time signature.
Note: the click track will be updated automatically on editing the time signature. If you don't want that for
some reason you can rename the click track (so it's no longer called Clicks.mid).
4.12 Monitoring
Monitoring means: hearing the track you're recording. The best way to achieve this is in hardware ("direct
monitoring"), as this doesn't introduce a delay. Soft Monitoring can be used if you need to hear effects like
the Guitar Amp while recording. It can also be used if your hardware doesn't support direct monitoring.
Direct Monitoring
Some sound devices come with a software control panel that allows for direct monitoring. Some devices
have a hardware knob to control direct monitoring. Not all sound devices have monitoring features though, in
this case you can consider using an analog mixer.
Windows XP: If you're using the Windows XP audio driver type you can access the sound device's internal
mixer using the Studio menu's Audio Output Control option. Turn up the Mic or Line input (the one you're
using) so you can hear it. Note that more faders can be made visible using the Options menu's Properties
window. Cheap or onboard sound devices typically support this.
Soft Monitoring
Note: this option does not work with the Windows XP audio driver type.
You can switch on Soft Monitoring using the Mon button at the top of the main window. If this option is used
recording audio tracks will apply any effects to the incoming audio signal, and then send it to the Audio Out
Device so you can hear the sound including the effects.
It is not recommended to use this feature as a means of monitoring the dry signal you're recording, as there
is an inherent latency between the input and the output signal. Using a low latency will increase the risk of
glitches in the recordings. All these problems can be avoided using direct monitoring.
4.13 Practice Mode
These days many instruments are software based. This isn't only true for software MIDI instruments like the
Sampler or VSTi plugins, but for guitar amp simulators like the Guitar Amp effect as well. Practice Mode lets
you use these instruments without actually recording them, so you can practice your part or use a keyboard
to figure out chords etc.
Manual Practice Mode
You can switch a track to Practice Mode by doubleclicking its Play button. The button will read 'P' while the
track is in Practice Mode. The track will stay in Practice Mode until you click either its Play or Rec button.
Note that Soft Monitoring must be used for audio tracks to be audible.
Automatic Practice Mode
A track will be switched to Practice Mode automatically if some conditions are met. A MIDI track will be
switched to Practice Mode if the MIDI instrument's window is visible at the time the transport starts while
neither the track's Play button nor the Rec button are "on". Similarly, an audio track will be switched to
Practice Mode if one of the effect windows is visible at the time the transport starts while neither the track's
Play button nor the Rec button are "on".
Automatic Practice Mode also works while the transport is stopped, regardless of the track's Play/Rec
buttons. Alternatively you can engage a track's Rec button, in this case there's no need for any effect or
instrument window to be visible.
5 Playback and Mixing
5.1 Playback and Mixing
In order to be able to play audio or MIDI files they should be opened in a track. To play a track you should
activate its Play button (it turns green) and start the transport.
Tracks have mixing and effect processing capabilities.
You can expand the mixer by adding any number of Group or Effect Return sections.
All Tracks, Groups and Effect Returns are routed through the Master section.
Playing MIDI
If a track's Play button is engaged and the transport is running, all streams in that track will be played.
If the Instrument slot contains an External MIDI Instrument the track's output will be sent to the
corresponding MIDI Out Device. In this case the track is not affected by any Group, Effect Return or Master
sections.
If a software instrument (Sampler, VST Instrument etc.) is being used the track's output will be routed
through any mixer sections, and eventually be sent to the Audio Out Device, as if it where an audio track.
5.2 Tracks
A MultitrackStudio track is a combination of a mixer's channel strip, a tape recorder's record/playback switch
and a piece of tape, the latter being replaced by an audio or MIDI file on the hard disk. Tracks can be added
using the Add Track menu's Add Audio Track, Add Midi Track or Import Audio/MIDI File options. The latter
can import multiple files in one go using the Shift key or the Ctrl key (Windows) / Command key (Mac).
Tracks can be removed by dragging the file name box (on the left) to the Garbage Bin (in the bottom left
corner of the main window). The order in which the tracks appear can be changed using drag-and-drop as
well.
All tracks have the following basic features:
Track (No file opened)
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File Display: The File Display shows the name of the opened file.
The lower text line indicates the type of the file:
¡ "mono audio (.wav)": Mono audio file of the .wav type.
¡ "stereo audio (.wav)": Stereo audio file of the .wav type
¡ "midi": MIDI file with one stream.
¡ "multi midi": MIDI file with multiple streams.
¡ "not opened": The file isn't opened, probably because the file does not exists or it's an
unsupported file type. In this case the Play, Rec and Edit Buttons are disabled.
¡ the "(r)" appendix means the file is opened as read-only.
File Options Menu (appears on clicking the File Display)
The file options menu contains the following items:
¡ Color: Here you can choose a different color than the default color, which is blue in the standard
theme. The color is used for the File Display and the track's editor.
¡ Open: Open an existing Audio/MIDI file. This option does not copy the file to the song folder,
unlike the Add Track menu's Import Audio/MIDI File option. Windows: If the file doesn't exists it
will be created. The type of the file is determined by the file's extension ('piano.mid' loads or
creates a MIDI file, 'piano.gjm' loads or creates a .GJM Audio file). If no extension is entered
a .WAV Audio file is opened or created.
¡ Save: Save MIDI or .aem file to disk. Use this if you want to save performed edits. This item is
available for MIDI tracks and edited audio tracks only. It is disabled if the file is unmodified.
Note: The tracks are saved automatically whenever the Song menu's Save option is invoked, so
saving tracks explicitly usually isn't necessary.
¡ Save As: Copies the file to a new file and opens the new file.
¡ Rename: Rename the file. Note: the file will be closed and reopened, so the editor's undo history
will be lost.
¡ Close: Unload the file.
Properties : Shows the file's properties. If it's an .mp3 file you can edit the file tags in this
window.
¡ Add Stream: (MIDI track only). Adds a stream to the MIDI file.
¡ Split Streams: (multiple stream MIDI track only). Splits the MIDI file in separate single-stream
files, these new files will be opened in new tracks.
¡ Alternate Take: Creates and opens a new file and puts the track in record mode, so you can
quickly record an alternate take. The files will appear on the menu so they can be opened easily.
The new file will appear in a new track if you keep the Ctrl key (Windows) / Command key (Mac)
down while clicking the mouse.
¡ Copy live performance to clipboard: (MIDI software instrument track only) After a software
instrument has been played 'live' without actually recording it, the performance can be copied to
the clipboard, and subsequently pasted in a track.
¡ File History: Every time a file is opened it is added to the menu. Using this item you can reload
the file. This can be very useful for auditioning Alternate Takes. If you press the Shift key while
clicking the file will be opened in a new track. You can rightclick (Windows) / Ctrl-Click (Mac) for
more options. The "Remove from list" options allows the Find Unused Files tool to mark the file
unused.
Play and Rec buttons: Put track in playback or record mode. Starting the transport will actually start
playback/recording.
Volume fader: This fader sets the playback volume for the track.
Mute button: Pressing this button will mute the track.
Solo button: Pressing this button will solo the track. The signal will still be routed through any Group
and/or Effect Return sections. Use the Effect Return's Mute button if needed.
Multiple tracks can be soloed by keeping the Ctrl key down while clicking additional Solo buttons.
Double clicking a Solo button invokes 'half solo': other tracks will be attenuated by 12dB rather than
muted fully. The Solo button reads 'H' in half solo mode.
Pan: This knob (with a blue dot) sets the Pan position for the track (0% = left, 50% = center, 100% =
right).
Level Meter: The Level Meter shows the sound level.
Edit button: Shows/hides the track's editor.
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The Play, Rec, Mute and Edit buttons operate on all tracks if the Ctrl key (Windows) / Command key (Mac) is
down when the button is clicked.
Audio Tracks
Audio tracks (tracks with an audio file) have the following additional features:
Audio track
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Effect Send: An Effect Send knob determines the level of the (mono) signal sent to the corresponding
Effect Return section. Effect Sends are of the 'post fader' (and 'post effects') type: the Effect Send
signal is affected by the Volume fader, the Mute button and the effects.
Effect Slots: The Effect slots can contain effects such as an EQ or a Compressor. Effects processing
takes place before volume and pan processing, so compressor settings don't need any adjustments
when moving the Volume fader.
Output Selector: The Output Selector determines the routing of the track's output. You can choose
between the Master section or one of the Group sections. The Pro edition can also route tracks to a
pair of channels (3/4, 5/6...) of the Audio Out Device if the song uses multiple stereo outputs (see Song
Properties). The Pan knob can be used to send the signal to one channel only. The Output Selector
isn't available if there are no options other than Master.
MIDI Tracks
MIDI track (Instrument: External MIDI Instrument)
MIDI tracks (tracks with a MIDI file) have an Instrument slot that determines where the track's output will be
routed to. If it contains a software instrument, like the default MultitrackStudio Instruments, the MIDI data will
be converted to audio and the output routed through the mixer. If it contains an External MIDI Instrument the
output will be send to an external hardware synthesizer. See the MIDI Instruments section for more
information on this subject.
MIDI tracks using a software instrument have all the extra controls audio tracks have (except for the first
Effect Slot, which is replaced by the Instrument Slot).
MIDI track (Instrument: Sampler)
5.3 Group
Audio tracks can send their output straight to the Master section, or to a Group section. The Group section's
output is routed to the Master section (they can be routed to sound device output channels as well using the
Pro edition). Group sections can be added using the Add Track menu. A group can be removed by dragging
the text on the left (Group 1 etc.) to the Garbage Bin.
Group sections have the following features:
Group section
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Volume fader: This fader sets the volume for the group.
Mute button: Pressing this button will mute the group.
Solo button: Pressing this button will solo the group.
Pan: This knob (with a blue dot) sets the Pan position for the group.
Effect Send: An Effect Send knob determines the level of the (mono) signal sent to the corresponding
Effect Return section. Effect Sends are of the 'post fader' (and 'post effects') type (the Effect Send
signal is affected by the Volume fader, the Mute button and the effects).
Effect Slots: The Effect Slots can contain effects such as an EQ or a Compressor. Effects processing
takes place before volume and pan processing, so compressor settings don't need any adjustments
when moving the Volume Fader.
Output Selector (Pro edition only): The Output Selector determines the routing of the group's output.
The output can be sent to the Master section or to a pair of channels (3/4, 5/6...) of the Audio Out
Device (the Pan knob can be used to send the signal to one channel only). The selector does not
appear if the song uses only one stereo output (see Song Properties).
Level Meter: The Level Meter shows the actual output level (that is the level after applying effects and
volume/pan).
Care should be taken in situations where tracks routed through the group use the same Effect Sends: Effects
in the group sections can cause phase shifts that could lead to unexpected coloration.
A Label can be stuck to a group section to show its purpose (ie. 'Backing Vocals').
The order in which the groups appear can be changed using drag-and-drop.
5.4 Effect Return
Each audio track (and MIDI tracks using a software instrument) and each Group will have a corresponding
number of Effect Send knobs. All Effect Send signals are routed to the corresponding Effect Return. Here
they can be processed and mixed with the tracks. Effect Returns are typically used for adding reverb. The
Effect Return sections do not affect MIDI tracks using an External MIDI Instrument. Effect Return sections
can be added using the Add Track menu. An Effect Return section can be removed by dragging the text on
the left (Effect Return 1 etc.) to the Garbage Bin.
Effect Return sections have the following features:
Effect Return section with Reverb effect
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Volume fader: This fader sets the volume for the Effect Return.
Mute button: Pressing this button will mute the Effect Return.
Solo button: Pressing this button will solo the Effect Return.
Pan: This knob sets the Pan position for the Effect Return.
Effect Slots: The Effect Slots can contain effects such as Reverb or Echo.
Output Selector (Pro edition only): The Output Selector determines the routing of the Effect Return's
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output. The output can be sent to the Master section or to a pair of channels (3/4, 5/6...) of the Audio
Out Device (the Pan knob can be used to send the signal to one channel only). This feature can be
used to send the effects bus to an external hardware effect unit (eg. a reverb unit). The selector does
not appear if the song uses only one stereo output (see Song Properties).
Level Meter: The Level Meter shows the actual output level (that is the level after applying effects and
volume/pan).
A Label can be stuck to an Effect Return to show its purpose (ie. 'Reverb').
The order in which the Effect Returns appear can be changed using drag-and-drop.
5.5 Master
The Master section affects all Tracks, Groups and Effect Returns (except MIDI tracks using a External MIDI
Instrument).
The Master section has the following features:
Master section with Master Limiter effect in last slot
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Volume fader: This fader sets the master volume.
Mute button: Pressing this button will mute everything.
Pan: This knob sets the master Pan position.
Mono button: Pressing this button forces mono output (both stereo channels carry the same signal).
This can be used for checking mono compatibility.
Effect Slots: The Effect Slots can contain effects such as an EQ or a Compressor. Effects processing
takes place after volume/pan processing, thus allowing the Master Limiter effect to clip at the correct
level.
Level Meter: The Level Meter shows the actual output level (that is the level after applying effects and
volume/pan). This means that the distortion takes place when the meter hits the red section.
View button: Shows/hides an oscilloscope view of the output signal.
5.6 Labels
The Add Track menu's Label item can be dragged and dropped onto mixer sections. A name can be typed
immediately after dropping a label, press Enter when done. Labels can be removed by dragging them to the
Garbage Bin in the bottom left corner of the window.
You can for example stick a 'Reverb' label to an Effect Return section.
Effect Return with "Reverb" label
5.7 Collapsing Mixer Sections
Mixer sections can be collapsed in order to save space on the screen. This can be useful if the song
contains a large number of tracks. Sections can be collapsed, and expanded again, by leftclicking the small
button in the top-right corner of the section. While collapsed only the section's name is visible, all controls are
hidden. In case of a track the name appears in green or red if the track is in playback or record mode
respectively.
More powerful options are available if you rightclick (Windows) / Ctrl-Click (Mac) the button:
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Expand/collapse all sections
Expand related sections only (appears on tracks and groups): expand all sections contributing to the
sound of the current one and collapse all other sections.
Expand/collapse same color tracks only (appears on tracks): expand all tracks having the same
color as the current one and collapse all other tracks.
5.8 Mixer Section Templates
Templates of mixer sections can be created by dragging a mixer section to
the Add Track menu button and dropping it there. A small window will pop
up where you can specify the name of the template.
The Add Track menu will show an 'expander' icon on the left if templates are
available for a certain mixer section type. After clicking it the menu shows
the templates. If you click a template a mixer section will be added based on
the template (ie. it will have the same effects, the same volume fader level
etc.). Tracks will also have a new audio or MIDI file, you'll be prompted for a
name before the track is actually created.
Examples of templates include MIDI track templates for your favorite
instruments, and audio track templates for your favorite vocal effects.
Add Track menu (MIDI track
templates expanded)
Templates can be renamed or deleted by right clicking them. They can also be deleted by dragging them to
the garbage bin.
6 Mastering and Mixdown
6.1 Mastering
Traditionally the multitrack recording is mixed-down to a stereo tape recorder. This stereo recording is then
'mastered', which usually means that EQ and (multi-band) compression is applied. When mastering for vinyl,
EQ and compression had to be applied to keep the needle from jumping out of the groove.
Using MultitrackStudio, mastering after mixdown-to-stereo does not make sense, as all the settings involved
in the mix are stored in the song file and can be recalled at any time. You can add effects to the mixer's
Master section and use them for mastering purposes. Typically an EQ, a Compressor and a Master Limiter
effect will be used. The Master Limiter should be the last effect. If multiband compression is required a Band
Effect with compressors can be used.
When mastering a couple of songs that belong together (a CD for instance) it is very important that the
songs sound 'the same'. They should be equally loud, have the same tonal balance etc. MultitrackStudio's
songlist feature can be very convenient for this job. Using a songlist you can audition your CD before actually
mixing the individual songs down to stereo.
The song can be mixed down using the Mix Down menu's "Mix down to audio file" option.
6.2 Preparing MIDI Tracks for mixdown
Before you can mixdown the song, any MIDI tracks using an External MIDI Instrument have to be recorded
to one or more audio tracks. To do this you should:
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Connect you synthesizer's output to your Audio In Device. If the synth is on your soundcard it may be
possible set up the soundcard to record the synth without any external wires.
Switch the MIDI track(s) to playback mode. Mute all other tracks.
Add a new audio track and switch it to record mode.
Start the transport and stop it when the whole MIDI track has been played.
You can now use the audio tracks instead of the MIDI tracks. To make the audio tracks sound just as loud as
the original tracks did adjust the Volume fader while switching between the tracks using the Solo or Mute
buttons.
6.3 Offline Mixdown
This Mix Down menu's Mix down to audio file option
can be used to mix down the current song to a single
audio file. The Start and End boxes determine the part
of the song that is going to be mixed down. The down
arrows next to the boxes can be used to load marker
positions. The Browse button invokes a standard file
save dialog. The File box displays the file name. You can
change the name without using the Browse button as
well. The Type box lets you choose the file type (.wav,
.mp3 etc.). The Quality box is available if the file type
offers multiple audio qualities.
An additional Include Varispeed button is visible if the
Pro edition's VariSpeed setting does not equal zero. This
button is engaged by default, so the VariSpeed's effect is
applied to the file. Speeding up a song slightly to make it
a bit catchier is a widely used trick.
Mix Down to file window
The More button unhides some advanced settings. The Channels box can be used if you want to mix down
to a mono file. The Samplerate box can be used to make the audio file's samplerate different from the
song's samplerate (eg. to mix down a 96 kHz Song to a 44.1 kHz file). The Noise Shaping button can be
used to avoid applying noiseshaping to the dither signal. If the Remember Folder button is engaged the
current folder will be used by default when the "Mix down to audio file" appears. If it's not engaged the file will
be placed in the folder the current song is in by default.
Note: Any MIDI tracks using an External MIDI Instrument should be recorded to audio tracks before mixing
down.
The Mix Down menu's Playback mixed down file option closes the current song, and loads the audio file
created using the "Mix down to audio file" option in a new song. You can browse for an audio file if there's no
mixed down file available (i.e. in case the "Mix down to audio file" hasn't been used since opening the current
song).
Note: the track's volume fader is set to +3dB automatically to compensate for the 3dB attenuation caused by
the pan knob.
6.4 Realtime Mixdown
Certain sample based VSTi plugins can suffer from audio drop-outs using offline mixdown. This typically
happens if the samples don't fit the computer memory. In this case realtime mixdown can be used to record
a master file.
Follow these steps to record a master file in real time:
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Add a new track with an audio file (for instance: Mix.wav). Use a stereo 16 bit .wav if the file is to be
burned to CDR.
Click the small arrow next to the track's Rec button and select 'Master Out'. Now the track will record
the output of the master section instead of your soundcard's inputs.
Switch the new track to record mode. Make sure all tracks that should be on the master are in
playback mode.
Start the transport, and stop it when the song has reached the end.
This way you can record a stereo .WAV file that can be used for CD burning etc. Note that this file will
always start at position 0, if you want to "top" or "tail" the file (remove unwanted parts at the beginning or
end) you can open the file in a track and use the track editor's Export option to export the part you want to a
new file.
Audio CD's always use a samplerate of 44.1 kHz. If you did not use a samplerate of 44.1 kHz use the
Samplerate Converter. Pro edition users can mix down to a 24 or 32 bit file in order to avoid rounding errors.
Note that the final file that will be burned to CDR must be a 16 bit file in any case.
7 Effects
MultitrackStudio features a large number of built-in high-quality effects. In addition VST/AU/DX plugins can
be used.
Effects are reached via Effect Slots. Effects can be selected by
clicking the slot's down arrow (or by right-clicking the slot). The Effect
Effect Slot Selector contains all native MultitrackStudio effects, VST/AU/DX
plugins, Convolutor impulse responses and effect presets. A search
text can be typed to filter the list. VST, AU and DX list items have invisible tags
so you can use 'vst', 'au' or 'dx' search terms to hide the other type of plugin.
When an effect's user interface is visible you can press the F3 key (Windows) /
Option-Command-F (Mac) to pop up the selector list. It remembers the search
text, so you can try the next effect which matches the search text easily.
Clicking the slot's button will show the effect's user interface. All effects have a
Bypass button. If the effect is not actually active (it's either bypassed or its
controls are in neutral position) the text in the effect slot's display appears
dimmed. Inactive effects do not use any processing power.
Effects can be moved using drag-and-drop, keeping the Ctrl key (Windows) /
Option key (Mac) down while doing this will copy the effect instead of move it.
Adding or removing effects can be done while the transport is running.
The following effects are available:
l Automated Fader
l Band Effect
l Chorus
l Compressor
l Convolutor
l Deesser
l Doubler
l Dynamics
l Echo
l EQ
l Exciter
l Flanger
l Guitar Amp
l Master Limiter
l Mid/Side Effect (*)
l Multi Effect
l Multiband Compressor (*)
l Noise Gate
(*): Pro edition only
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Parallel Effect
Phase Inverter
Phaser
Reverb
Rotor
Saturator
Stereo Effect
Stereo Imager
Transposer
Tremolo
Tuner
Vibrato
Vocal Tuner
Effect Selector (Pro edition)
VST Plugins
AU Plugins
DX Plugins
Presets
Presets can be loaded or created using the Presets button which appears on the effect's user interface. Most
effects come with built-in presets.
Controlling the Transport
You can use either the keyboard or the mouse to control the transport while an effect's user interface is on
screen. In particular the Alt+Left Arrow (Windows) / Command-Left Arrow (Mac) key combination will be
useful when setting up effects. Some VST/AU/DX plugins can gain "keyboard focus", which makes it
impossible to control the transport using the keyboard. You can click the righthand part (the "MultitrackStudio
part") of the plugin window to restore keyboard focus.
7.1 Auto Wah
The Auto Wah is a resonant low pass filter. Its cut off frequency goes up if the signal level goes up and vice
versa.
Auto Wah window
The Frequency knob sets the lower limit for the filter frequency. Range sets the difference between the
highest and lowest filter frequency. Sensitivity determines how much the filter frequency changes in
response to a certain input level. The Attack and Release knobs determine how fast the filter frequency
responds to level changes.
7.2 Automated Fader
The Automated Fader is a volume control that can be programmed to change over time. It can be used to
attenuate, amplify or mute part of a track. It can also be used to turn off Reverb or Echo effects if used in an
Effect Return section or in a Parallel Effect.
Automated Fader window (two dots selected)
The fader will move in a linear fashion from one dot to another. Dots can be added, removed or moved using
the editor.
The editor can work in one of three modes:
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Select: clicking a dot selects it, pressing the mouse in "empty space" and moving it selects dots.
Selected dots can be moved.
Add: clicking in "empty space" adds a dot, clicking a dot selects it. Moving the selected dot(s) is
possible as well. You can add 4 dots in one go by moving the mouse horizontally while clicking to add
a dot. After moving a certain distance (approx. a centimeter) 4 dots will appear.
Draw: draw free-hand.
The buttons in the bottom left corner can be used to switch mode. The Alt key (Windows) / Option key (Mac)
can be used to temporarily switch between Select and Add mode. Selected dots appear in red.
Undo and Redo let you undo and redo edits.
Edit: if a single dot is selected the Edit button pops up a window where you can type a new value for the
selected dot (eg. "-20" to move the dot to -20 dB). If multiple dots are selected the Edit button pops up a
window where you can 'amplify' the selected dots, so the vertical distance between them changes.
Delete removes the selected dot(s).
Sel All selects all dots.
Copy and Paste let you exchange data between Automated Faders, MIDI Controller editors and Automation
editors
If used in a track the track's audio/MIDI data is displayed in the background. Scrubbing will be available as
well, it doesn't include any effects (including the Automated Fader itself).
Note: Editing tracks in Ripple mode does not update Automated Faders, the Song Editor does.
7.3 Band Effect
The Band Effect splits the audio signal in two or three frequency bands. Each band can have its own effects.
After effects processing the three bands are mixed, where the Volume knobs control the band levels.
Band Effect window
The bands are split using first order filters.
Using the Band Effect you can build a three band compressor for mastering purposes, for example.
Vocal Removal
The Vocal Removal preset is a vocal remover built with a Band Effect. The Mid Band includes a Stereo
Effect with a Phase Inverter effect in order to remove the sound at the center of the stereo image. As a
result, the mid frequencies at the center of the stereo image are removed. The Bass/Mid and Mid/Treble
knobs can be adjusted to keep as much bass and treble as possible while still attenuating the vocals
sufficiently. Vocal Removal only works if the audio signal is stereo, the vocals are panned center, and there's
not an excessive amount of stereo reverb on the vocals.
7.4 Chorus
The Chorus effect adds thickness and warmth to the signal. The output signal is a mix of the input signal and
a delayed copy of it. The delay time is modulated.
Chorus window
The Delay knob sets the average delay time. The Speed and Depth knobs control the modulation.
The Mix knob sets the dry/wet ratio (0% being dry only, 100% being wet only). If you use an Effect Return for
adding Chorus set Mix to 100%. If used as an insert effect Mix will usually be set below 50%.
The No Color button removes the coloration traditionally associated with Chorus effects. This works best
with Mix values of approximately 50%.
If the Stereo button is active a stereo chorus effect will be applied to mono signals (this is usually the effect
you're looking for). The Reverse St. button is identical, except that the signal will 'spin' in opposite direction.
7.5 Compressor
The Compressor attenuates loud parts, while leaving soft parts untouched. Apart from this, it can make
sounds 'fatter' or just make them fit better in the mix without any significant compression taking place.
Compressor window
Threshold controls the level above which compression takes place.
Attack controls how fast the Compressor will attenuate loud signals, while Release controls the time it takes
to stop attenuating after a loud signal ended. Low Release times can cause distortion at low frequencies.
Gain sets the amount of gain applied after the compressing action is done. As the Compressor attenuates
loud parts the overall level drops. The Gain control compensates for this level drop. By activating the Auto
Gain button the Compressor will automatically adjust the Gain control.
Program selects the program used:
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Clean is as transparent as possible. This is a 'feedforward' compressor, which is the way typical
modern compressors work.
Vintage is less transparent, but has more character. This is a 'feedback' compressor, which is the way
older (tube or opto) compressors work.
Warm Vintage is like Vintage, but modified so it produces more even harmonics.
The Side Chain section is available with the Clean program only.
Typical applications of Side Chain section's effect slot are:
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Use an EQ effect to attenuate the bass frequencies in order to avoid the compressor overreacting to it,
which can lead to "pumping".
Use an EQ effect to boost certain unwanted frequencies, so the compressor attenuates them
The Transfer Curve (bottom left) shows the effect of the Threshold, Ratio and Knee settings. It ignores the
effect of the Gain knob. The horizontal axis represents the input, the vertical axis represents the output. The
Level History (top left) shows the relative amount of time the input signal is at a certain level (the higher the
bar, the more time). The Level History will be reset when either the Transport is started or the Compressor
window pops up. You can reset it manually by pressing the F5 key (Windows) / Command-R (Mac).
7.6 Convolutor
The Convolutor effect processes the audio signal using an impulse response file. Its main purpose is
generating Reverb. In this case the effect will typically be used in an Effect Return section.
Convolutor window
In simple terms the Convolutor works like this: If you clap your hands in a hall you hear a few seconds of
reverb. It's not hard to imagine that knowing this reverb it is possible to calculate the hall's response to a
guitar (or any sound). This indeed is the case. We use ideal handclaps (impulses) and generalized reverbs
(impulse responses). When viewed in an editor an impulse looks like one small dot (and the rest is just
silence). Now you can understand what the convolutor does: a recording of a guitar contains lots of dots in
the editor, and the convolutor treats every single dot as a handclap. Adding all the handclaps makes the
hall's response to the guitar!
Note that if you whistle in a hall the hall's response only contains tones you whistled. This is a necessary
condition for creating the exact response: the thing you want to model may not generate frequencies you
didn't put in. This means you cannot use the Convolutor to generate distortion or to shift pitch.
Using the Load button you can load an impulse response file. The Pro edition comes with the "Vintage
Reverbs", a collection of 4 plate reverbs, 2 spring reverbs and 2 digital reverbs. You can organize your own
impulse responses just like you can sampler patches (see Organizing your patches).
Length Limit controls the part of file that's actually being used. The lower this value, the lower the
Convolutor's CPU usage.
Use the Use mono impulse on mono input button if you don't want mono input signals to be converted to
stereo (this happens if the impulse file is stereo). Doing this halves the Convolutor's CPU usage. Clicking the
Mono Button has no effect until the Transport is restarted.
kHz should be set to the samplerate of the impulse response file. MultitrackStudio will detect this value
automatically on loading a file if the file provides samplerate information. Impulse response file are typically
sampled at 44.1 kHz.
Volume controls the output level.
The Mix button adds the dry input signal to the output of the effect.
Use the Delay knob to add a delay to the processed signal. This can be useful for reverb applications.
The Random button applies subtle modulation which makes reverbs sound smoother. You can switch this
off if you're using non-reverb IRs like guitar speakers or mics.
The Convolutor is 'zero latency', so it doesn't add a delay to the signal. If the Convolutor is used 'live' (either
in a recording MIDI track with a software instrument, or in a recording audio track using the Soft Monitoring
feature) a small latency may occur if the sound device buffer size isn't a power of two (256, 512, 1024 etc.).
Recording impulse response files
You can create your own impulse response files using the Impulse.gjm file. This file contains a single
impulse at about 50 ms from the start of the file (to make sure that is gets at the output of your sound device,
even if it has some kind of fade-in algorithm to avoid clicks).
Windows: Impulse.gjm is located in the folder where MultitrackStudio is installed (usually C:\Program
Files\MtStudio).
Mac: To use Impulse.gjm you should Ctrl-click MultitrackStudio.app and choose Show Package Contents.
Now copy the Impulse.gjm from the Contents/Resources folder to a more convenient location.
Recording an impulse response file is easy:
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Connect your sound device's output to the input of the piece of gear you want to use.
Connect the piece of gear's output to your sound device's input.
Load 'Impulse.gjm' in a track. The track should be in playback mode.
Set up another track that will record the impulse response file.
Record a few seconds and then use the recording track's Editor to check the level of the recording: it
should be just below full scale. If necessary record it again.
6. Export the piece of the recording that contains the impulse response. The starting point is just before
the pulse appears in Impulse.gjm. The ending point is where the impulse response has faded (look at
editor and/or listen). Impulse responses typically have a length of 1..4 seconds for reverbs. For other
things 0.5 seconds usually will do.
If your sound device makes clicking sounds when you start the Transport you should edit Impulse.gjm so
that the impulse is at about 1 second from the start.
7.7 Deesser
The Deesser effect reduces 'S' sounds in vocals in a very unobtrusive manner.
Deesser window
De-Es controls the amount of attenuation applied to 'S' sounds. Applying too much attenuation will result in
unnatural sounding vocals.
Threshold controls the level above which the Deesser becomes active.
Range controls the dynamic range the Deesser operates on. The threshold can be made to float within a
certain range, so low-level parts can also be effectively deessed.
Frequency controls the frequency above which 'S' sounds are detected. If this control is set too low the
Deesser will be too sensitive (i.e., sounds that are not a 'S' will be attenuated). By engaging the Monitor
Button you can hear the filtered signal the Deesser uses. You can uses this option to judge whether the
Frequency knob is set up correctly (ideally you only hear 'S' sounds and nothing else).
7.8 Doubler
The Doubler emulates "Artificial Double Tracking" as it was done with tape recorders in the sixties. It is
typically used on vocal tracks to make the vocals sound a bit 'fatter'.
The Doubler mixes a delayed copy of the signal with the
original signal. The delay time is modulated with a randomized
triangle wave. This results in slight timing and pitch differences
between the two voices.
The Delay knob sets the average delay time. Low delay values
result in a 'fatter' voice rather than two separate voices. High
delay values result in two separate voices. The Speed and
Depth knob control the modulation.
Doubler window
The Mix knob sets the dry/wet ratio (0% being dry only, 100% being wet only). Lower values result in a
subtle thickening of the sound without noticeable doubling.
If you want to pan the two voices to a different position in the stereo image you can use a Stereo Effect.
Load a Doubler in one channel and set its Mix control to 100%. You can then use the Stereo Effect's Pan
controls.
The Doubler effect can also model sixties style phasing/flanging effects, since these were done with tape
recorders in a similar setup as well. The following settings can be used as a starting point for this:
Speed=0.18 Hz, Depth=1.5 ms, Delay=2 ms, Mix=46%, Phase Invert=On.
The Phase Invert button inverts the phase of the delayed signal. This results in a different sound,
particularly at lower delay settings.
7.9 Dynamics
The Dynamics effect combines a Limiter, a Compressor and an Expander in one effect. The Expander part
can be used to attenuate background noise for example.
Dynamics window
Attack controls how fast the Compressor and Limiter will attenuate loud signals, while Release controls the
time it takes to stop attenuating after a loud signal ended. Low Release times can cause distortion at low
frequencies.
Gain sets the amount of gain applied after dynamics processing has been done.
The Transfer Curve on the left shows the effect of the current settings of the Limiter Treshold knob, the
Compressor/Expander Treshold, Ratio and Max.Att. (maximum attenuation) knobs and the Gain knob. The
horizontal axis represents the input, the vertical axis represents the output. The vertical Gain Reduction
meter shows the current amount of gain applied by the effect. The Level History (top left) shows the relative
amount of time the input signal is at a certain level (the higher the bar, the more time). The Level History will
be reset when either the Transport is started or the Dynamics window pops up. You can be reset it manually
by pressing the F5 key (Windows) / Command-R (Mac).
7.10 Echo
The Echo effect produces one or more echoes, depending on the Feedback control. If Feedback is zero,
only one echo is produced. Otherwise a decaying sequence of echoes is produced.
Echo window
Delay controls the time it takes for the first echo to arrive (and the time between two consecutive echoes).
The delay time is displayed in milliseconds and notes.
Lo-cut sets the frequency below which attenuation takes place (this typically happens in tape echo units).
Hi-cut sets the frequency above which attenuation takes place (this also happens in nature and in tape echo
units).
TapeSim controls the amount of flutter and distortion.
Mix controls the level of the echoes that are mixed with the dry (input) signal (0% is dry only, 100% is echo
only).
7.11 EQ
The EQ effect consists of six tone control sections. The overall transfer is showed in the display at the top.
Each section has its own Bypass button.
EQ window
Lo Cut
The Lo Cut section is a lo cut filter. The cut off rate can be 6, 12 or 18 dB/octave. The cut-off frequency can
be 20 Hz up to 2 kHz.
Bass
The Bass section can be a shelving or bell-type equalizer. Boost/Attenuation can be -12 dB to +12 dB.
Frequency can be 20 Hz to 1 kHz. If the Vintage button is active the equalizer follows the classic Baxandall
curves: cutting low frequencies will be accompanied with a slight boost of the lower-middle range and vice
versa. If the Shelve button is active no dipping or peaking will occur. If the Bell button is active the equalizer
will affect a one octave band only.
Lo Mid
The Lo Mid section is a parametric equalizer. The center frequency can be 50 Hz up to 2 kHz. The
Bandwidth can be 0.05 to 2 octaves. The Gain can be -12 dB to +12 dB. The section is inactive when Gain is
zero (the green indicator will dim).
Hi Mid
The Hi Mid section is a parametric equalizer. The center frequency can be 500 Hz up to 12 kHz. The
Bandwidth can be 0.05 to 2 octaves. The Gain can be -12 dB to +12 dB. The section is inactive when Gain is
zero (the green indicator will dim).
Treble
The Treble section can be a shelving or bell-type equalizer. Boost/Attenuation can be -12 dB to +12 dB.
Frequency can be 1 kHz to 20 kHz. If the Vintage button is active the equalizer follows the classic Baxandall
curves: cutting high frequencies will be accompanied with a slight boost of the upper-middle range and vice
versa. If the Shelve button is active no dipping or peaking will occur. If the Bell button is active the equalizer
will affect a one octave band only.
Hi Cut
The Hi Cut section is a hi cut filter. The cut off rate can be 6, 12 or 18 dB/octave. The cut-off frequency can
be 500 Hz up to 20 kHz.
Spectrum Display
The actual frequency spectrum of the audio signal can be shown in the graph. This can be a great help in
setting up the EQ.
Clicking the button at the bottom-right corner of the graph will show a menu that controls the frequency
spectrum that's shown in the graph:
One of the following signals can be shown:
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EQ output
Master section's output (if the EQ is used in the mixer's Master section) (Pro edition only)
Other sidechains (Pro edition only)
The realtime behavior can be one of the following:
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Real time: This option looks nice, but isn't of great value when it comes to setting up the EQ.
Average: a moving average is displayed.
Total Average: The average is displayed.
The averages will be reset automatically when either the Transport is started or the EQ window pops up. You
can reset the averaging mechanism manually by pressing the F5 key (Windows) / Command-R (Mac).
The full scale value can be 0, -10, -20 or -30 dB. The scale can be either 10 or 20 dB/division.
The spectrum can be shown using:
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No Bands: high resolution, but of little psycho-acoustic value.
1/3 Octave Bands: Similar to Critical Bands at higher frequencies, but higher resolution in the lower
range.
Critical Bands: this is the way the human ear works.
Well mastered recordings typically have a spectrum that's flat at frequencies below 500 Hz, and decreases
at 20 dB/decade (6 dB/octave) above this frequency. The Flat Mastering option boosts frequencies higher
than 500 Hz with 20 dB/decade, so a well mastered recording will show a flat spectrum. Potential problems
can be easily found this way.
7.12 Exciter
The Exciter effect adds harmonics to the treble part of the audio signal.
The harmonics generator is modeled after a vacuum tube.
The Frequency knob controls the frequency above which harmonics
are added. For best performance only the top octave of the input
signal should be used. If Frequency is set too low the output will sound
distorted instead of excited.
Exciter window
The Harmonic knob controls how hard the internal harmonics generator is driven. The higher its value, the
more harmonics will be generated. If the harmonics generator is driven too hard the signal will be limited to
avoid excessive distortion, and the Peak indicator will light. This is to be avoided, as the effect is intended to
add more harmonics when the signal is loud.
The Level knob controls the level of the added harmonics.
The Exciter can be set up this way:
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Make sure the Transport is started.
Set the Frequency and Level knobs to their maximum value, set the Drive knob to its middle position.
Turn down the Frequency knob until you hear the highest frequencies of the signal.
Adjust the Harmonics knob. If set too low, the level of the generated harmonics will be too low (you'll
just hear a high-pass filtered version of the original signal). If set too high, the Peak indicator will light
during signal peaks.
5. Set the Level knob to its minimum value.
6. Turn up the Level knob until you're satisfied with the sound.
7.13 Flanger
Flanging is the effect that occurs when two tape recorders playing back the same signal run slightly out of
sync.
Flanger window
The Delay knob sets the average delay time. The Speed and Depth knobs control the modulation.
The higher the Feedback position, the more effective the effect is.
If the Stereo button is engaged the delay times of both stereo channels will be modulated with out-of-phase
signals. With low delay settings this sounds like a rotating speaker. Reverse St. button is identical, except
that the signal will 'spin' in opposite direction.
7.14 Guitar Amp
Note: the Windows XP audio driver type doesn't allow for playing the amp live.
The Guitar Amp effect emulates three vintage guitar amps: Combo USA, Combo UK and Stack. It emulates
the amp, its speaker and the microphone recording it. In addition up to three stompbox effects can be used.
Guitar Amp window
Guitar section
The Level knob controls the level of the guitar signal presented to the amp. The three lights located next to
the knob serve as level indicator. They can be used to make the amp see the same input level a hardware
amp would. The SC (single coil) light will light if the level equals the output of a single coil pickup. The HB
(humbucker) light will light if the level equals the level of a humbucker pickup. The Hot light will light if the
level is even higher. Note that the lights assume you're playing the guitar as hard as possible (eg. some
powerful rhythm chords). The lights are supposed to light during the loudest signal peaks only. Don't worry if
no light ever lights while playing more subtle parts: a real amp would see a lower level too.
The lights are just a way to make it easy to set up the amp to work just like the hardware version. You can
ignore them if you like. You can, for example, use a higher setting to get more distortion.
A guitar amp's 'Lo' input is typically 6 dB less sensitive than the 'Hi' input. You can turn the Input knob down
by 6 dB in order to virtually plug your guitar in the Lo input.
Stompbox effect sections
Three stompbox effects can be inserted between the guitar and the amp. Auto Wah, Booster, Chorus,
Compressor, Delay, Echo, Flanger, Noise Gate, Phaser, Pickup EQ, Reverb and Tremolo are available.
Each effect features two knobs.
Booster is a treble booster. A huge number of classic rock sounds were created using a device like this.
Pickup EQ can be used to change the characteristics of the guitar pickup. You can turn its Treble knob
down to compensate for a shrill sound caused by a very short guitar cable, or to make a single coil pickup
sound more like a humbucker. Turning Treble up can make a humbucker sound more like a single coil
pickup.
Amp section
The Model buttons control the type of amp that's being used. The other controls are different for each amp
model.
The Combo US model features Volume, Treble, Mid and Bass knobs and a Bright switch. The Bright
switch has no effect if the Volume knob is all the way up.
The Combo UK model features two channels. The Brilliant channel features Volume, Treble, Bass and
Cut. The Cut knob attenuates high frequencies.
The Normal channels features Volume, Bass and Cut knobs. The Bass knob cuts a certain amount of bass,
closely emulating the the bass response of various versions of this particular amp.
The Stack model features Volume, Treble, Mid and Bass knobs. In addition there are Bottom, Hot and
Gain buttons. These buttons change certain components of the amp, and hence change the sound. All
variations correspond to versions of the hardware amp being modeled.
Speaker/Mic section
The Cntr/Edge knob controls the position of the recording microphone. 0% is at the center of the guitar cab's
speaker, 100% is at the edge. The knob offers 7 positions.
You can use the box below the Cntr/Edge knob to load your own speaker impulse response file. The
Cntr/Edge is not available in this case.
Note: the impulse responses are shared with the Convolutor effect.
The Output knob controls the output level. The horizontal meter shows the output level. It is important to
stay out of the red section if the amp is played live, in order to avoid clipping. Typical values range from 0 dB
(overdrive sounds) to approx. 10 dB (clean sounds).
Using the Guitar Amp
It's best to connect your guitar to a high impedance input. Low impedance inputs compromise the guitar
pickup's treble response. Some sound devices have a dedicated instrument input. A high-impedance DI box
or preamp can be used if your sound device doesn't have one. You can also try using a stomp box effect as
DI box.
To play the Guitar Amp live you should click the Track's Rec button, and turn on the Mon (Soft Monitoring)
button (located at the top of the main window). This does not work with the Windows XP driver type.
In addition to the two stompbox effects you can use effects in the track's effect slots. You can place them in a
Multi Effect if need more slots.
The Guitar Amp's output signal is similar to the signal coming from a microphone placed close to a guitar
cab. One will typically apply studio type effects like EQ, compression and reverb to it. Clean guitar sounds
will benefit from a Compressor effect (turn up the Attack knob to approx. 25 ms.).
The Guitar Amp uses significantly more CPU power than most other effects because it runs at a higher
samplerate internally. It is, however, much more efficient if the input is silent (because the guitar plays the
chorus only, or it plays the solo and the outro only etc.). You can take advantage of this feature by using an
Automated Fader effect before the Guitar Amp to mute the silent parts in recordings. This is necessary
because the noise which is always present in recordings will be seen as a non-silent signal by the Guitar
Amp.
7.15 Master Limiter
The Master Limiter can be used to maximize the level of the mix. It's supposed to be used in the last (right
hand) effect slot of the Master section.
Note that the output signal will be delayed by the amount of time set by the Ahead control.
Master Limiter window
Drive controls the amount of amplification.
The Master Limiter 'looks ahead into the future', so it can turn down the level before the signal peaks. Ahead
controls how far the limiter will look into the future. The attack time of the limiter depends on the Ahead
control (the shorter this time, the faster the attack).
The Master Limiter automatically optimizes the limiter's release time (ie. the time it takes to turn up the level
again after the signal peaked) to ensure fast release times while keeping distortion low. The Release control
acts as a multiplier for this value.
The level is always limited just below the digital full scale level (-0.3 dB). This small margin serves to avoid
distortion in samplerate converters, CD players, soundcards etc.
The RMS Output meter indicates the perceived loudness. A pop song's chorus typically reads approx. -17
dB, that's why this level is marked by a triangle. Classical music typically reads approx. -23 dB during forte
parts.
Note: the -17 dB and -23 dB levels correspond to the 0 dB levels of the K-14 and K-20 metering systems
respectively.
The Peak Statistics display shows the relative amount of time the input signal is at a certain level (the
higher the bar, the more time). This gives you an idea as to what the limiter is doing to the audio signal.
There's a colored 'curtain' on the right side of the display that can be moved using the Drive knob. The
vertical bars that are covered by the curtain are limited. You'd typically want to limit a couple of small bars
only. The statistic display will be reset when either the Transport is started or the Limiter window pops up.
The small horizontal bar at the bottom of the Peak Statistics display shows the current input peak level.
In short, setting up the Master Limiter goes like this:
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Make sure the Master Limiter's window is on screen.
Start the Transport and play a chorus. Adjust the Drive knob so the RMS Output meter reads approx. 17 dB.
Make sure the Peak Statistics display doesn't indicate too much limiting (ie. no large bars are behind
the curtain). You may have to turn down the Drive knob a bit, or apply more compression before the
Master Limiter.
The amount of gain reduction is shown in the effect slot containing the limiter, so you can get an
Limiter Slot idea of what the limiter is doing without having to open its user interface. It appears in a modest
color up to 6 dB, and in red from 6 dB on.
The No gain button can be used while toggling the Bypass button in order to compare the sound using the
Master Limiter to the sound without. The No gain button compensates for the gain that's applied by the Drive
knob, so the signals have equal levels.
7.16 Mid/Side Effect
Note: this feature is available in the Pro edition only.
The Mid/Side Effect lets you apply effects to the Mid and Side parts. The incoming stereo channels (left and
right) are converted to Mid and Side parts. Then any effects or level changes are applied. Finally the Mid and
Side parts are converted back to left and right channels.
Mid/Side Effect window
The Mid/Side Effect can be used to correct problems in a full mix. In a typical pop song lead vocals and bass
will be in the Mid part exclusively, while many backing instruments are in the Side part or in both parts. An
EQ is the most commonly used effect. You can use it in the Mid section to EQ the lead vocals. You use it in
the Side section to make the cymbals a bit louder without affecting the vocals, for example. Another idea is
to use a Band Effect with a Dynamics effect in one of its bands, in order to make the vocals a bit louder or
brighter etc.
The Mid/Side Effect has no effect if the input signal is mono.
Note: mid/side tricks typically come into play when it's not possible to redo the mix. Redoing the mix is often
easier and better.
7.17 Multi Effect
The Multi Effect is a container for other effects. Use it if you need more effect slots than available.
Multi Effect window
When loading a Multi Effect the effect which is currently in the slot is moved to the Multi Effect. If you keep
down the Ctrl key (Windows) / Command key (Mac) while clicking the effect selector's Multi Effect item all
related effect slots will be moved to the Multi Effect (eg. all the track's effects, all a Stereo Effect's Left
Channel effects etc.).
The Multi Effect can also be used for making effect presets consisting of more than one effect (for instance a
'vocal channel' consisting of EQ, Compressor and Deesser).
7.18 Multiband Compressor
Note: this feature is available in the Pro edition only.
The Multiband Compressor splits the audio signal in three frequency bands, and applies compression to
each band. It is typically used in the Master section when a single band compressor can't provide the amount
of compression required without introducing side effects like a loud kick drum noticably muting high
frequency parts.
Multiband Compressor window
The Bass/Mid and Mid/Treb knobs set the frequency band crossover points.
The three compressors have six knobs each:
Threshold controls the level above which compression takes place. Gain sets the amount of gain applied
after the compressing action is done. As the compressor attenuates loud parts the overall level drops. The
Gain control compensates for this level drop.
Ratio and Knee control the shape of the compression curve.
Attack controls how fast the compressor will attenuate loud signals, while Release controls the time it takes
to stop attenuating after a loud signal ended. Low Release times can cause distortion at low frequencies.
Low Ratio settings and relatively low Treshold settings are typically used for mastering purposes.
The display shows the average gain (including the Gain knobs) as a solid line. If you want to apply
compression without changing the frequency spectrum significantly you can use the Gain knobs to make
each band's average gain approximately 0 dB.
The bars at the top of the display represent the peak reduction (not including the Gain knobs).
7.19 Noise Gate
The Noise Gate attenuates signals below a certain level. It can be used to remove noise (or headphones
recorded by a vocal mic) from a track.
Noise Gate window
Threshold determines the level below which the signal is attenuated. Reduction controls the amount of
attenuation applied to signals below the threshold. Applying lots of attenuation can make a Noise Gate slow.
Attack controls the time it takes for the Noise Gate to open (ie. let the signal through). Release controls the
time it takes for the Noise Gate to close (ie. attenuate the signal). Attack and Release show the time needed
for 60 dB attenuation change. Hold sets an absolute time to wait after the signal drops below the threshold.
The release phase starts when the Hold time has elapsed.
The Open indicator lights when the gate is open.
The Level History on the left shows the relative amount of time the sidechain signal (after effects
processing) is at a certain level (the higher the bar, the more time). Also, the current input level is shown
horizontally at the bottom. This Level History makes it very easy to set up the threshold. There's a colored
'curtain' on the left side of the display that can be moved using the Threshold knob. The signal bars that are
covered by the curtain are muted (the gate is closed). The Level History will be reset automatically when
either the Transport is started or the Noise Gate window pops up. You can be reset it manually by pressing
the F5 key (Windows) / Command-R (Mac).
In short, setting up the Noise Gate goes like this:
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Make sure the Noise Gate's window is on screen.
Press the Space bar to start the Transport, play the whole song and press the Space bar again to stop.
If there are two distinct groups of vertical bars, then adjust the Threshold knob so that the 'curtain'
covers the left group. If there's just one group, or two groups that aren't separated very well, then you
can try using an EQ effect in the Side Chain section.
7.20 Parallel Effect
The Parallel Effect has two signal paths. Each path has its own effect slots. The outputs of the two paths are
mixed using the Volume controls.
Parallel Effect window
The Parallel effect can be used to add effects. For example, echo can be added to a part of a track using an
Echo and an Automated Fader effect in one of the paths.
Another application is parallel compression, which is popular in classical music. By using a Compressor
effect in one of the paths the dry and compressed signals can be mixed.
7.21 Phase Inverter
The Phase Inverter inverts the phase of the signal, just like a mixing desk's polarity switch. This effect can be
used to correct out-of-phase stereo recordings. Another possible application is larger-than-live stereo
positioning (using the Stereo Effect).
Phase Inverter window
7.22 Phaser
The Phaser effect has a selectable number of Notches (frequency regions that are attenuated) that can be
moved through the frequency spectrum slowly. Traditional stomp-box type of phaser used with electric
guitars typically have two notches, expensive studio devices have a higher number of notches. The Phaser
effect is particularly suited for electric piano and electric guitar.
Phaser window
Frequency controls the tonal character of the effect.
Range determines the distance the notches move. High values can lead to noticeable pitch shifts.
Speed controls the speed used to move the notches.
Depth controls how deep the notches are (the deeper the notches, the more intense the effect).
The Stereo button can be used to create a stereo effect by moving the left and right channel notches in
opposite directions.
7.23 Reverb
The Reverb effect offers four programs:
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Room is a small room program, can be used to add 'ambience' to vocals.
Chamber is an echo chamber program.
Hall is a concert hall program.
Plate is plate program.
The Reverb effect is typically used in an Effect Return section.
Reverb window
Rvrb time controls the reverb time.
Mix mixes the wet (ie. reverb) and the dry (ie. input) signal. 0 % is dry only, 100% is wet only. 100% will
typically used if the effect is used in an Effect Return section.
Width controls the stereo width of the reverb.
Pre Delay controls the time it takes for the first reflection to appear.
The Color section contains controls that affect the tonal character of the reverb.
Lo Mult is a multiplier for the low frequency reverb time, while Lo Freq sets the frequency below which Lo
Mult is active.
Hi Cut sets the frequency above which the reverb time is decreased gradually.
If Spin is not zero some of the reverb algorithm's parameters are modulated with a low frequency signal.
This makes the reverb more random and smoother. Too much Spin will introduce noticeable pitch shifts in
the reverb (easily noticeable on piano parts). Percussion parts may benefit from a higher Spin setting.
7.24 Rotor
The Rotor effect simulates a rotating speaker. It consists of bass and treble speakers rotating independently.
The speakers are driven by a tube amplifier and two microphones are used to pick up the sound.
Rotor window
The Amplifier section contains the Drive control that controls the level the 'tube amplifier' is operating on.
This can be used to add tube distortion.
The Rotors sections controls the speaker's rotation speed. Tremolo is fast, Chorale is slow. Your MIDI
keyboard's Modulation wheel can be used to switch speed if the Rotor is used in a Wheel Organ's effect slot.
(Controller #1: 64 or higher is Tremolo, lower values correspond to Chorale.) The Stop button can be used
to keep the rotors at a fixed position.
The Mics section controls the microphone placement used to record the speaker cabinet. Distance controls
the distance between the mics and the cabinet. Spread controls the stereo channel separation. Balance
controls the relative levels of the treble and the bass speakers. The cabinet is miked with two microphones at
a 180 degree angle. This angle can be reduced to 90 degrees using the Narrow Angle button.
7.25 Saturator
The Saturator effect adds either Tube or Tape type distortion, depending on the Tube and Tape buttons.
The Drive knob controls the amount of distortion. The output level is approximately equal to the input level.
Tube
The Tube program simulates a preamp with an output transformer. The preamp mainly generates second
order harmonics, the transformer generates lower order odd harmonics. The Tube program adds harmonics,
not unlike an exciter effect.
Drive controls the signal level that's fed to the virtual preamp's input. The VU meter shows the average
value. At 0 dB total harmonic distortion is approx. 2%.
Saturator window ('Tube')
Tape
The Tape program models distortion, high frequency compression, low frequency peaks and wow & flutter. It
can be used on individual tracks to make them sound a bit warmer. The Tape program can also be used on
a full mix (ie. in the Master section). This makes the tracks blend better.
Drive controls the virtual recording level. The VU meter shows the average value of the recording level. At 0
dB VU total harmonic distortion is approx. 1%.
LF Peak controls low frequency peaks ("bumps"). Flutter controls the amount of wow & flutter.
Saturator window ('Tape')
7.26 Stereo Effect
The Stereo Effect has separate groups of effect slots for the left and right channels. After effects processing
the two signals are mixed to stereo using their Volume and Pan controls.
Stereo Effect window
Use the Stereo Effect if you want to apply different effects to the left and right channels. You can, for
instance, apply tremolo, vibrato or echo to one channel only.
The Stereo Effect can also be used to narrow stereo-width or swap the channels (using the Pan knobs), or to
mute one of the channels.
7.27 Stereo Imager
The Stereo Imager effect can change the width the the stereo image. It works with both stereo and mono
input signals.
Stereo Imager window
The Width knob controls the stereo image width. The Reverse button reverses the left and right channels.
Mono input signals are converted to stereo using a filter. Two filter types are available:
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Shelve: Low frequencies are directed to the left channel, high frequencies are directed to the right
channel. The Color knob controls the crossover-frequency.
Comb: A delayed signal is added to the left channel and subtracted from the right channel. The Color
knob controls the distance between the notches of this comb filter.
The Stereo Imager is mono compatible: if the stereo outputs are summed the resulting signal is equal to the
original mono input signal.
7.28 Transposer
The Transposer effect shifts the pitch of the audio signal by the amount set by the Semitones and Cents
knobs. Pitch can be shifted up to one octave up or down. The Transposer features two programs:
Monophonic and Polyphonic.
Monophonic
The Monophonic program is optimized for monophonic ("one note at a time") audio. It features a Formant
knob which shifts the formant of the sound. Pitch shifting sounds most natural if the formant is shifted in the
other direction (eg. if pitch is shifted up 2 semitones the formant should go down two semitones).
Transposer window ('Monophonic')
Polyphonic
The Polyphonic program is optimized for polyphonic audio. It is extremely CPU efficient while still producing
good sounds. Part of the efficiency comes from a limited headroom, which is where the Level knob comes
in. If the light above it lights up the audio signal is clipped and you should turn the Level knob down a bit.
This typically won't happen, but it may if the signal has been amplified by other effects. If a track has been
recorded at a very low level you can turn up the Level knob to maximize sound quality.
Transposer window ('Polyphonic')
Note: the Transposer only works if delay compensation is available. In short this means it doesn't work 'live'
using Soft Monitoring.
7.29 Tremolo
Tremolo modulates the level of the signal with a sine wave.
Modulation Speed and Depth can be adjusted.
The Stereo button can be used to create a stereo effect by
modulating the right channel with a phase shifted version of the sine
wave.
If the Vintage button is checked the characteristics of a vintage
analog tremolo effect are emulated. The Tremolo effect can also be
used as an 'analog warmer' (set Depth to zero).
Tremolo window
7.30 Tuner
The Tuner effect can be used to tune instruments like guitar, bass etc.
Tuner window
The Tuner typically works best if it's used before any other effects (like the Guitar Amp).
The A box determines the frequency of note A5. The Tuner effect can be used to measure the frequency of
an A5 played on, for example, a piano. This value can be entered in the A box, so other instruments can be
tuned to the same pitch.
Note: in order to use the Tuner effect you should engage the track's Rec button. Alternatively you can make
sure Practice Mode is being used.
7.31 Vibrato
Vibrato modulates the pitch of the signal with a sine wave.
Vibrato window
Modulation Speed and Depth can be adjusted. The Stereo buttons can be used to create a stereo effect by
modulating the right channel with a phase shifted version of the sine wave.
7.32 Vocal Tuner
The Vocal Tuner can be used to correct out-of-tune vocals. It features two programs: Natural, which corrects
pitch in a very unobtrusive manner, and Modern, which sounds a bit synthetic and robot-like. The Vocal
Tuner is a mono effect, you can use it on a stereo track but the signal will be converted to mono.
Vocal Tuner window: gray curve is input, blue curve is output pitch
Natural
The Natural program works as unobtrusively as possible.
The Speed knob sets the speed at which pitch is corrected. A slow setting leaves note onsets and vibrato
intact.
Preserve Formant corrects the formant so the results sound more natural. This isn't necessary if pitch is
shifted by a small amount only.
Modern
The Modern program sounds a bit synthetic and robot-like. This sound has become quite popular in recent
years.
The Correction knob sets the amount by which out-of-tune notes are corrected. At 100% pitch is perfect,
which usually sounds rather synthetic. Lower settings allow for more natural sounds. The ignore section
contains knobs that make the tuner ignore certain parts of the sound in order to avoid unwanted artifacts.
Ambient ignores background noise during silent parts. Sibilant ignores unpitched sounds like "s". Note that
the Vocal Tuner doesn't do anything if you turn an "ignore" knob up by too much.
The key editor
The key editor shows both the input pitch (dimmed color) and the output pitch (bright color). The Vocal Tuner
quantizes pitch to the closest key. Using the key editor you can turn keys off for certain parts. If a key is off
pitch is quantized to the closest key which is on. The Vocal Tuner doesn't do anything if all keys are off. The
key editor looks like a one-octave pianoroll. You can select part of a horizontal bar that represents a key
using the mouse, and use the ON or OFF buttons to switch the selected part on or off. Selecting multiple
adjacent keys is possible as well.
The best way to use the Vocal Tuner depends on the vocal track:
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If it's more or less OK you can use a Vocal Tuner to add some polish, no editing required.
If the vocals are really good but a few notes are off you can process just those notes. To do this you
can click "SEL ALL" followed by "OFF" to turn all keys off. Then find the bad notes, select all 12 keys in
those places and switch them on.
If the vocals are pretty bad the Vocal Tuner may quantize to the wrong notes. This can happen if, for
example, an F is so low it's closer to E than to F. You can solve this by selecting the E key and turning
it off.
The Vocal Tuner can be used to change the melody. In the picture below all keys are off except A, so the G
is turned into an A.
Vocal Tuner editor, all keys off except A
Note: When used in an audio track the Vocal Tuner updates the key editor pitch curves even if the transport
isn't running. It uses the track's audio file directly for this, so any effects preceding the Vocal Tuner aren't
applied. For example: if an Automated Fader effect is used to mute a note the muted note will still be visible
in the Vocal Tuner.
Note: the Vocal Tuner only works if delay compensation is available. In short this means it doesn't work 'live'
using Soft Monitoring.
7.33 VST Plugins
VST plugins are third party plugins. Many commercial and free plugins are available in this format.
Windows: VST plugins are .dll files. In the Studio menu's Preferences window a folder can be selected
where the VST plugins are located. MultitrackStudio looks for VST plugins in this folder and its subfolders.
Mac: VST plugins are .vst files. They're located in the user or system Library/Audio/Plug-ins/VST folder.
VST plugins can be loaded in an effect slot using the slot's down arrow. The VST plugins appear in the effect
selector's "VST Plugins" section (Windows) / "VST and AU Plugins" section (Mac).
Plugins that do supply a graphical user interface will be shown in a window with Bypass and Presets buttons.
Plugins that do not have their own user interface will be made to look like native MultitrackStudio effects.
Any presets coming with the plugin appear in the Presets menu. The presets can be factory presets (stored
in the plugin itself), presets stored in .fxb bank files or presets stored in .fxp files. MultitrackStudio looks for
matching .fxb/.fxp files in the folder where the plugin is located, and all of its subfolders.
If a VST plugin gets in a bad state somehow you can press the F5 key (Windows) / Command-R (Mac) while
the plugin interface is visible. This will save the settings, reload the plugin and load the settings again.
There are a couple of 'powered' plugins on the market that come with their own dedicated hardware to run
on. These kind of plugins are not supported.
Some plugins generate MIDI data. This MIDI output is merged with the data coming from MIDI input devices
if the plugin is in a recording audio track and Soft Monitoring is enabled.
Note: if you install VST plugins while MultitrackStudio is running you may have to restart MultitrackStudio in
order for the new plugin to be listed (the plugins are collected only once per session).
Bridging
Note: bridging is available for Windows only. The Mac version supports 32 bit plugins only.
Both 32 and 64 bit versions of MultitrackStudio support 32 and 64 bit VST plugins. 64 bit Windows is
required to run 64 bit plugins. 64 bit MultitrackStudio runs 32 bit plugins 'bridged', or 'out-of-process' in
computer lingo. Similarly, 32 bit MultitrackStudio runs 64 plugins bridged. This happens automatically.
Bridging plugins has some drawbacks: there's some performance overhead, and you may hear glitches while
recording them at low ASIO/VistaSound latencies. It's best to use mostly 64 bit plugins with the 64 bit version
of MultitrackStudio.
Note: not all VST plugins are happy running bridged. Some seem to work fine running one instance, but
weird things happen if you add more instances. Some copy protection mechanisms may fail. Some won't
work if UAC (User Account Control) is enabled on Windows Vista and newer.
If a bridged plugin crashes it should not tear down MultitrackStudio. You can choose to run a buggy plugin
bridged for that reason. To force a plugin to run bridged you can right-click it in the instrument selector, and
check the Run bridged option. From now on, all new instances of the plugin will run bridged. The window
title bar of a bridged plugin reads "VST plugin (bridged): name".
Under the hood
Each bridged plugin appears in the Windows Task Manager as "MtStudioVSTServer.exe" (32 bit plugin) /
"MtStudioVSTServer64.exe" (64 bit plugin).
Customizing the VST folder
On Windows the Preferences window allows for specifying one VST folder. On Mac there are two default
VST folders, and you can specify an additional one in the Preferences window. If you need more flexibility
you can place an MtStudioLinks.txt file in the VST folder, a folder that's included by an MtStudioLinks.txt file
or any of the subfolders. MtStudioLinks.txt must be a plain text file. NotePad (Windows) / TextEdit (Mac) can
be used to create/edit such files.
This example file demonstrates the options:
Windows:
g:\OtherFolder\
g:\OtherFolder\TheReverb.dll
-SamplesDir\
-BuggyPlugin.dll
Mac:
/Volumes/MyDrive/OtherFolder/
/Volumes/MyDrive/OtherFolder/TheReverb.vst
-SamplesDir/
-BuggyPlugin.vst
The first line includes the OtherFolder folder. The second line includes the TheReverb plugin. The third line
excludes the SamplesDir subfolder, this can be useful if folders with huge amounts of samples slow down
plugin scanning. The last line excludes the BuggyPlugin plugin.
7.34 AU Plugins
Note: AU Plugins are supported in the Mac version only. If a song with an AU plugin is opened with
MultitrackStudio for Windows a Missing Effect placeholder will appear.
AU (Audio Unit) plugins are .component files located in the user or system Library/Audio/Plugins/Components folder. OS X comes with several AU plugins, and many third parties offer AU plugins as
well.
AU plugins can be loaded in an effect slot using the slot's down arrow. The AU plugins appear in the effect
selector's "VST and AU plugins" section. The plugin will be shown in a window with Bypass and Presets
buttons. Any presets coming with the plugin appear in the Presets menu.
If an AU plugin gets in a bad state somehow you can press Command-R while the plugin interface is visible.
This will save the settings, reload the plugin and load the settings again.
Some plugins generate MIDI data. This MIDI output is merged with the data coming from MIDI input devices
if the plugin is in a recording audio track and Soft Monitoring is enabled.
Note: if you install AU plugins while MultitrackStudio is running you may have to restart MultitrackStudio in
order for the new plugin to be listed (the plugins are collected only once).
7.35 DX Plugins
Note: DX plugins are considered obsolete, and support for them is disabled by default. You can enabled DX
plugin support by opening a song that uses a DX plugin. Alternatively you can go to the Studio menu's
Preferences window and press Ctrl+Alt+Shift+D.
DX plugin support is available in the 32-bit Windows version only.
DX (DirectX) plugins can be loaded in an effect slot using the slot's down arrow. The DX plugins appear in
the effect selector's "VST and DX plugins" section. The plugin will be shown in a window with Bypass and
Presets buttons.
MultitrackStudio automatically detects whether the plugin supports mono in to stereo out conversion (reverbs
usually do). Some plugins do not support this, if this is the case you can force the plug in to operate in stereo
in to stereo out mode by adding a Stereo Effect just before the DX plugin.
Note: if you install DX plugins while MultitrackStudio is running you may have to restart MultitrackStudio in
order for the new plugin to be listed (the plugins are collected only once).
7.36 Automatic Delay Compensation
Some effects introduce a delay which would make tracks go out of sync. Automatic Delay Compensation
(often called Plugin Delay Compensation or PDC) serves to compensate for the effect's delay automatically.
Automatic Delay compensation is available in:
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Tracks which are in playback mode. The delay is compensated if it's 10 ms or more.
Group and Master sections. The delay is compensated if it's 1 ms or more.
Effect Return sections. There's no minimum delay here.
Multi Effects, Stereo Effects, Parallel Effects and Mid/Side Effects loaded in the aforementioned mixer
sections. There's no minimum delay here.
MultitrackStudio Instruments (playback mode).
The Output mixer of VST/AU plugins that have more than 2 outputs.
Delay compensation is NOT available in:
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The "Side Chain" box of sidechaining effects (Dynamics etc.).
DX/DXi plugins are not compensated.
7.37 External Sidechain Routing
Note: this feature is available in the Pro edition only.
All version of MultitrackStudio feature "internal sidechaining". In this scenario an effect (typically an EQ) can
be inserted in the sidechain, while the sidechain input is always connected to the effect input. The Pro edition
also features "external sidechaining", where the sidechain input can be connected to sources outside the
effect.
The Compressor, Dynamics and Noisegate effects, as well as some VST/AU plugins,
feature sidechain inputs that can be connected to various signals:
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Sidechain section
Internal: the effect's input.
Track: the output of an audio or soft instrument track.
Group Bus: the sum of the tracks that are routed to a specific Group (available if the effect is in a
Group, Effect Return or Master section).
Effect Send: the mix of the Effect Sends of Tracks and Groups (available if the effect is in a Group,
Effect Return or Master section). Effect Send signals of Groups will not be sent to effects that are in a
Group section, but they will be sent to Effect Return and Master sections.
Band Effect In: the Band Effect's input (available if the effect is in a Band Effect).
Track sidechaining
Track sidechaining can be used to perform "ducking" (i.e. mute background music whenever the announcer
speaks, or mute bass guitar every time the kick drum hits). Example: load a Compressor in the bass guitar
track, switch it to the Clean program (which supports sidechaining) and select the kick drum track as
sidechain input.
The only limitation that applies to track sidechaining is that sidechains can't "feed" themselves, eg. Track 1
can't use Track 2 as sidechain input if Track 2 uses Track 1 as sidechain input already. This typically isn't a
problem in practice.
Some VST plugins can use the right channel of a stereo pair as sidechain input. To take advantage of this
you can use a Stereo Effect before the VST plugin, with a Dynamics effect in the right channel effect section.
Click the Dynamic effect's Monitor button and select the sidechain input, which will now be routed to the VST
plugin. You might want to use another Stereo Effect after the VST plugin to mute the right channel and pan
the left channel center.
Group Bus sidechaining
Group Bus sidechaining can be used instead of track sidechaining if you want to control multiple tracks with
another track as sidechain source, or if you want to control a track with the sum of several other tracks.
Effect Send sidechaining
This was the only way to do "ducking" until track sidechaining was introduced. It is rather complicated to set
up, but it can still be useful.
Effect Send bus sidechaining is best explained using an example:
Using Effect Send bus as sidechain input
In this example the level of the lower track will be muted when the upper track is loud. The upper track's
Effect Send (the rotary knob with the black dot) sends the track's signal to the Effect Send bus. The lower
track's output is sent to Group 1. One of this Group's Effect Slots contains a Compressor effect using Effect
Send 1 as sidechain input.
Effect Return 1's fader is all the way down in order to avoid sending the signal to the Master section.
In this example the upper track will be audible (the Effect Send is connected post-fader, so the fader can't be
all the way down). If you don't want this you can send its output to an additional Group and mute the Group.
The Compressor can be placed in a Band Effect to compress a specific frequency range only.
Note: the Group's Effect Send does not affect the signal sent to the Compressor's Sidechain input, however
the signal is sent to the Effect Return section as expected.
Band Effect sidechaining
The Band Effect In input can be used to build your own dynamic noise filters (using a Noisegate or Dynamics
effect's expander in the treble band) etc.
VST/AU Plugin sidechaining
VST and AU effect plugins which have more than 2 input channels will get a Side Chain box just like the one
in the Dynamics/Compressor/NoiseGate effects. Input channels 3 and 4 will receive the sidechain source
signal.
VSTi/AUi plugins which have audio inputs get a Side Chain box as well. You can, for example, load vocal
pitch correction plugins in an instrument slot and route the vocal track to it using the Side Chain box. Now
you can use the track's MIDI editor to enter notes which the plugin can use to determine the correct pitch.
Some VSTi/AUi plugins have more than 2 output channels. The outputs of these plugins are available as
sidechain sources. Up to 30 outputs per plugin can be used as sidechain sources. This feature is especially
useful with drum plugins. You can, for example:
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Use the kick drum channels as sidechain source for a Compressor or Dynamics effect in the bass
track.
Route the plugin outputs to tracks, so you can mix the drum instruments in the main window instead of
the plugin's Output Mixer. A VSTi output can be routed to a track by adding an audio track and loading
a Dynamics effect in its first effect slot. In this Dynamics effect you can select the sidechain source and
click the Monitor button. If you route all the drum VSTi outputs to tracks this way you can use the VSTi
track's Mute button to mute it. Note that you'll have to unmute this track if you want to play the VSTi
live, or in order to hear notes when clicked in the track's editor. This is because the sidechains only
work when the track is playing back.
Some VST plugins come with proprietary sidechain input plugins. This is a secondary plugin that picks of the
sidechain source and routes it the the primary plugin. This setup won't work without glitches in
MultitrackStudio on multiple CPU machines without telling MultitrackStudio these plugins belong together. If
you rightclick a VST plugin in an effect/instrument selector you can check the "Has sidechain input plugin"
option. New instances of the plugin will now get a Sidechain Plugin box. This box is identical to a Side Chain
box, except that its output is ignored. You can load the secondary plugin in the effect slot and choose the
sidechain source. Now MultitrackStudio's sidechaining mechanism will make sure it works OK under any
circumstances.
8 MIDI Instruments
MIDI Instruments are used to convert MIDI messages to audio. These instruments are available:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
MultitrackStudio Instruments, a GM compatible instrument collection.
Wheel Organ, emulates wheel organ.
SoundFont Player, generates audio using .sf2 files. (Mac only)
Sampler, generates audio using samples.
Matrix Sampler, plays back samples.
External MIDI Instruments, can be either an external hardware synth, a synth on your soundcard, or a
software emulation of such a device.
7. VSTi Plugins, a VST Plugin that can convert MIDI to audio.
8. AUi Plugins, an AU Plugin that can convert MIDI to audio.
9. DXi Plugins, a DX Plugin that can convert MIDI to audio.
MIDI Instruments are reached via Instrument Slots. An
instrument slot appears on any track containing a MIDI file,
Instrument Slot replacing the left hand effect slot. Instruments can be
selected by clicking the slot's down arrow (or by rightclicking the slot). The Instrument Selector contains all native
MultitrackStudio instruments, VSTi/AUi/DXi plugins, sampler patches and
instrument presets. A search text can be typed to filter the list.
VSTi/AUi/DXi list items have invisible tags so you can use 'vsti', 'aui' or 'dxi'
search terms to hide the other type of plugins. The items in the 'MTSi and
Sampler Patches' section have invisible 'mtsi' and 'sampler' tags. When an
instrument's user interface is visible you can press the F3 key (Windows) /
Option-Command-F (Mac) to pop up the selector list. It remembers the
search text, so you can try the next instrument which matches the search
text easily.
Instrument Selector (Pro edition)
Instruments can be copied from one instrument slot to another using drag-and-drop.
Clicking the slot's button will show the instrument's user interface. When this window appears the instrument
will be 'live', so it responds your MIDI keyboard. The instrument will be live while the track's Rec button is
engaged as well. All instruments feature a red indicator on the right hand side that lights when the instrument
is currently responding to messages received on the MIDI In Device (ie. your MIDI keyboard). If an
instrument is live and the Transport is not running (ie. its user interface is visible or the Rec button is
engaged) the instrument will be deactivated if a 'buffer error' occurs because of CPU usage being too high.
The red indicator will go off. If this happens the instrument can be activated again by either hiding and
showing its user interface or by reactivating the track's Rec button.
Presets
Presets can be loaded or created using the Presets button which appears on the instrument's user interface.
Using software instruments in record mode
Real time audio processing on a computer involves a trade-off between latency and reliability.
MultitrackStudio is designed for high reliability in order to minimize the possibility of glitches to occur. The
downside of this approach is a fairly high latency (usually slightly higher than 0.5 seconds). This means that
it takes about half a second until you hear the effect of moving a Volume fader or any other control.
Obviously playing a MIDI keyboard would be impossible to do with such a high latency between playing and
hearing the actual sound. Therefore MultitrackStudio takes a different approach when recording using a
software instrument. The output of tracks containing software instruments will not be routed through the
mixer, but straight to the Audio Out Device instead. The track's Effect Sends and Output Bus Selector are
not available in this situation.
The software instrument latency can be set in the Studio menu's Devices window (click Select Devices).
"Freezing" software instruments
MIDI tracks using a software instrument can be saved to an audio file using the track's Save As option. This
can be very useful if a software instrument uses a lot of CPU power. The software instrument is effectively
replaced by an audio file, but all effects and mixer settings etc. stay the same, so the sound is identical. The
track's File Options Menu can be used to load the MIDI file again (it appears in the File History at the bottom
of the menu). The software instrument will be reloaded automatically. This feature is usually called 'freeze'.
A software instrument's output level could be too high for an audio file, so the signal gets clipped. If this
happens you can use the MIDI track's Controller editor to turn down the Volume or Expression controllers.
Pro edition users can use 32 bit float type .wav files. These files do not clip the audio signal so the problem
won't occur.
8.1 MultitrackStudio Instruments
The MultitrackStudio Instruments are a General MIDI compatible instrument collection. It contains over 100
instruments including a drum kit.
Note 1: The MultitrackStudio Instruments do not have any reverb, so a Reverb effect should be used to add
reverb.
Note 2: You can play back a MIDI track containing multiple streams ("instruments"). However, it is
recommended to click the track's file name box and choose "Split Streams". This gives you more control over
instrument sounds, levels and reverb send levels.
MultitrackStudio Instruments window ("Synth Strings 1")
The Instrument box lets you pick an instrument. The instruments appear in five categories: Keyboard,
String, Wind, Percussion and Synth. You can type (part of) an instrument name in the Search box to find an
instrument quickly.
The Controls section contains knobs, drawbars or buttons which control the sound of the selected
instrument. Not all instruments offer controls.
The Effects section contains three effect slots. Some instruments use one or more effects by default.
Keyboard instruments
Acoustic and electric piano's feature a Strength knob which controls how hard the piano is played. It adds a
value to a note's velocity. '2.5' is neutral position.
The electric piano's Dynamics knob controls the velocity curve, ie. it controls how sensitive the piano is to
key pressure. Bass and Treble are tone controls, as found on amplifiers or even some electric pianos.
The Percussive Organ is percussive even if another note is playing. This is different from the Wheel Organ
which follows the traditional style.
String instruments
Bass guitars feature a Strength knob which controls how hard the bass is played. It adds a value to a note's
velocity. '5' is neutral position.
Violin Section, Violin Section 2, Viola Section, Cello Section and Contrabass Section are specialized
versions of String Ensemble 1. There are two violin sections in order to lessen phasing problem with unison
notes. Bowed strings feature a Vibrato knob similar to the winds (see below).
Wind instruments
Most wind instruments feature a Vibrato knob. Vibrato is applied automatically depending on the musical
context (especially note duration). The knob controls the amount of vibrato. You can avoid vibrato on certain
notes by programming MIDI controller #1. The value at approx. 300 ms after the note onset is the value that
counts. It's not possible to add vibrato where the automatic system thinks it's not appropriate.
Percussion instrument
The Drum Kit uses MIDI channel 10 in order to be compatible with General MIDI. A suitable channel is
picked automatically when you load an instrument, so you typically don't need to pay attention to the
Channel box.
Synthesizers
Almost all synth sounds use the same synthesizer which comes in three versions: square, sawtooth and
triangle. The bottom-right corner of the Controls box shows the version. The sawtooth version is used for
most sounds.
The four drawbars control the level of four oscillators. 8' is the root note. 8'D is a slightly detuned version.
5'1/3 is a fifth and 4' is one octave up.
The Attack, Decay, Sustain and Release knobs represent a classic ADSR envelope. If Sustain is higher
than "5" the level will rise during the decay phase. The pad sounds use this swelling effect.
Muting notes
Some instruments, like Harp and Drum Kit, ignore note-off events. A sustain-off event will mute all sounding
notes for which a note-off event has been received, so you can use the sustain pedal to mute harp strings or
cymbals etc.
MIDI Implementation
The MultitrackStudio Instruments respond to Volume (#7), Pan (#10), Expression (#11) and Sustain (#64)
controllers. Pitch Bend is also supported.
Acoustic pianos respond to Soft pedal (#67), bowed strings and many winds respond to Legato (#68).
Brightness and Treble knobs respond to #74. Vibrato knobs respond to #1. Attack, Decay, Sustain and
Release knobs respond to #73, #75, #79 and #72 respectively. Drawbars and drum level knobs respond to
#12, #13, #14 etc.
GM compatibility
The MultitrackStudio Instruments are largely compatible with GM level 1. Some notable differences are:
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The "Sound Effects" programs, like Helicopter or Gun Shot, are not available.
A couple of percussion instruments are not available: vibraslap, guiro and cuica.
The MultitrackStudio Instruments contain a couple of instruments which are not part of GM. The MIDI
file will contain a program number which matches the sound closely. For example: if you pick "Violin
Section" the MIDI file will contain the "String Ensemble 1" program, so the file plays back correctly
using any GM player.
The MultitrackStudio Instruments are typically limited to the 'real' instrument's note range. Violins, for
example, won't play notes below the open G string.
Under the hood
The MultitrackStudio Instruments are modeled, they don't contain any samples. This allows for randomizing
many parameters, so each note has a unique sound which helps reducing "machine gun" effects.
8.2 Wheel Organ
The Wheel Organ is a software version of the classic B3 tonewheel drawbar organ. All its typical
characteristics have been modeled including the key clicks, the scanner vibrato, the tonewheel crossfeed
and the harmonic foldback.
Wheel Organ window ("Upper Manual" instrument)
Instrument
The Instrument section offers a choice of four different combinations of organ manuals / pedals:
1. Upper Manual: The upper manual spans five octaves ranging from C3 (note 36) to C8 (note 96).
2. Lower and Upper Manual: The lower manual spans five octaves ranging from C0 (note 0) to C5 (note
60). The upper manual spans five octaves (minus the lower C) ranging form C#5 (note 61) to C10
(note 120).
3. Pedal, Lower and Upper Manual: The pedal spans two octaves ranging from C0 (note 0) to C2 (note
24). The lower manual spans three octaves (minus the lower C) ranging from C#2 (note 25) to C5
(note 60). The lower manual does not have the lowest and highest octave of the five octave version.
The upper manual spans five octaves (minus the lower C) ranging form C#5 (note 61) to C10 (note
120).
4. Upper Manual M-type: This one has the same range as the normal Upper Manual instrument. It has
no harmonic foldback, and the volume levels of the tonewheels are a bit different.
Effects
The Effects section contains three effect slots. By default, one of them contains a Rotor effect.
Drawbars
The manuals have 9 drawbars each, the pedal has only two. Moving drawbars does not affect notes that are
currently playing (unlike the real tonewheel organ's drawbars). The drawbars also serve to set the relative
volume levels of the upper/lower manuals and pedal keyboard.
The 8' drawbar is the fundamental tone. The 4', 2 2/3', 2', 1 3/5', 1 1/5' and 1' drawbars correspond to the
2nd, 3th, 4th, 5th, 6th and 8th harmonic respectively. The 16' drawbar is one octave below the fundamental,
and the 5 1/3' is the third harmonic of the 16' drawbar's frequency.
Drawbar settings (traditionally called 'registrations') are usually written as a sequence of 9 numbers like 88
8000 000. In this example the three drawbars on the left are pulled out all the way ('8'), while the other six
aren't pulled out at all ('0'). 88 8000 000 and 88 8800 000 are widely used, but any other setting can be used.
Percussion
The percussion feature adds a short sound when a key is pressed. The percussion signal is added to a new
note only if there's no other key being pressed, so the percussion can be controlled by playing 'legato'.
Percussion is applied to the upper manual only.
Perc. Level controls the level of the percussion signal (off, 1..5). The original tonewheel organ has only two
levels: 'Soft' (equals '5') and 'Normal' (equals '3'). A few more levels have been added to the Wheel Organ,
as tweaking the precussion level is one of the most popular modifications to tonewheel organs. Perc. Harm.
controls whether the percussion signal is the 2nd or 3th harmonic of the note being played, these harmonics
correspond to the 4' and 2 2/3' drawbars respectively. Perc. Decay controls the decay time of the percussion
signal (slow or fast).
Vibrato
The vibrato control has seven positions: Off, V1/2/3 and C1/2/3. Most, if not all, of the time one of the C
(Chorus) positions will be used. The V positions provide Vibrato. Vibrato is applied to all manuals and
pedals.
Playing instrument 2 or 3 with one MIDI keyboard
MultitrackStudio's Keyboard Splitter can be used to play instrument 2 or 3 using only one MIDI keyboard.
Follow these guidelines to set up the Keyboard Splitter:
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Make sure the Left Hand and Right Hand section's Channel values equal the Channel Indicator in the
bottom-right corner of the Wheel Organ window.
The Split Note can be set at C5 for a start.
The Left Hand Transpose Oct can be set at -3, the Right Hand Tranpose Oct can be set at 2.
The Split Note and Transpose Oct controls can be adjusted to reach different parts of the manuals.
Playing instrument 2 or 3 with two MIDI keyboards
MultitrackStudio Pro supports multiple MIDI In devices. Instrument 2 or 3 can be played using two MIDI
keyboards if the MIDI keyboards have an octave-shift function. Using 5-octave keyboards, the lower
keyboards will be shifted 3 octaves down, and the upper keyboard will be shifted 3 octaves up.
MIDI Implementation
The Wheel Organ responds to Volume (#7), Expression (#11) and Sustain (#64) controllers. Pitch Bend is
also supported. Note that the original tonewheel organ didn't have Sustain or Pitch Bend features.
The upper manual drawbars respond to #12 to #20, the lower manual drawbars respond to #21 to #29, the
pedal drawbars respond to #30 and #31.
Percussion can be controlled with #70 (volume), #71 (decay) and #72 (harmonic).
Vibrato can be controlled with #76.
The Rotor effect's rotation speed can be controlled with the Modulation (#1) controller.
8.3 SoundFont Player
Note: the SoundFont Player is available in the Mac version only. OS X 10.7 or newer is required.
SoundFont Player window
The SoundFont Player can load .sf2 files. Many .sf2 files are available on the internet.
Use the SoundFont box to load one of the available .sf2 files. The Import option allows for importing
additional ones. Alternatively you can drop a .sf2 file on the SoundFont Player window.
Use the Preset box to pick one of the presets provided by the current SoundFont.
8.4 Sampler
MultitrackStudio includes a disk-streaming sampler. Samples can be played direct from disk, so patches can
be larger than the amount of RAM memory available.
Sampler window
Using the Load Patch button you can load a patch. Sampler patches are files with .PTC extension. Other
formats (.SF2, .GIG or .SFZ files) can be selected as well, doing this will invoke the built-in patch converter.
See also Organizing your patches.
The Edit Patch button invokes the Patch Editor.
The Polyphony setting can be used to limit the number of sampler that can be played simultaneously in
order to reduce CPU or disk usage. For example: the number of playing samples can become quite large
while playing piano if the sustain pedal is kept down for a long time. Reducing polyphony can help in this
situation.
The controls in the Controls section override the values stored in the Patch (as set by the Patch Editor).
The Sampler responds to messages on all MIDI channels, so the Channel value typically doesn't matter. It
does matter if you're recording using the Keyboard Splitter or using multiple keyboards: it these situations
you want only messages received on this channel will to be recognized.
The Sampler supports the following MIDI messages:
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Note On/Off
Modulation (cont. 1)
Volume (cont. 7)
Pan (cont. 10)
Expression (cont. 11)
Sustain (cont. 64)
Legato (cont. 68)
Brightness (cont. 74)
Pitch Bend
Note that sending pan events does not affect notes that are currently playing.
If the MIDI file consists of multiple streams the Sampler uses only the first stream.
Simple Patches, containing just one sample can be created easily by dragging an audio file from Windows
Explorer (Windows) / Finder (Mac) to a MIDI track's Instrument Slot. A Sampler will be loaded in the
Instrument Slot and a Patch will be created which plays the audio file at its original pitch if you press the C5
(middle C) key. You can also drag audio clips from the Shelf, or parts of an audio track's editor, to an
Instrument Slot.
The Sampler stores all samples in memory if enough memory is available. The amount of memory the
Samplers are allowed to use can be specified in the Preferences window.
Samples aren't stored in memory at all if there's not enough memory available. In this case they're streamed
from disk directly. Should the data arrive too late silence will be played instead if the Sampler is used in
record mode. You don't need to worry about this: the sound will be OK during playback.
Organizing your patches
You can easily browse your sampler patches if you store them in separate folders (see left picture). The
Patch Converter does this automatically.
Folders in Windows Explorer
Categories (left) and Patches (right)
In the Studio-->Preferences window you can specify the folder containing all patches ('C:\Samples' in this
example). If this folder is specified the Sampler's Load Patch button will start the Patch Selector (see right
picture) instead of the file-browser. The Patch Selector's left pane shows all available categories, the right
pane shows all available patches in the selected category.
The Patch Selector's Browse button lets you browse for a patch file, including .SF2 and .GIG files. The
Patch Converter will be invoked automatically if necessary.
Patch Converter
The Patch Converter converts third party sampler patches to MultitrackStudio .PTC format patches.
Currently .SF2, .GIG and .SFZ files are supported. An audio file is generated for every single sample used in
the sampler patch. Furthermore a .PTC file is generated for every instrument in the sampler patch.
The new patch will be placed in the category that's highlighted in the Category box. New categories can be
added using the New button. Typically, categories will be called Piano or Drums etc.
Alternatively the Browse button can be used to specify a custom folder.
Patch Converter window
8.5 Matrix Sampler
The Matrix Sampler can load up to 16 audio samples. They can be played using the Matrix onscreen
keyboard for example.
Matrix Sampler window
A 4x4 matrix of cells appears on the left. On clicking one of the 16 cells the corresponding controls appear
on the right. The Load button allows for loading samples. Several options are available:
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Import an audio file.
Paste data copied from audio or MIDI track editor.
Remove.
In addition you can copy from one cell to another using drag-and-drop. Dropping a file on a cell is possible as
well. Samples can be up to 6 seconds in length. If you have longer samples you can consider slicing them
into parts using a track editor, the parts can then be loaded in multiple cells using the paste option.
The text box next to the load button shows the name of the cell, and allows for changing it. The name
appears in the cell itself if a sample is loaded.
Volume controls the volume of the sample. Semitones and Cents control the pitch. Stretch can be used to
make the sample shorter or longer, so it matches the song tempo. The box accepts fractions, so you can
type '120/80' instead of '1.5' to make a 120 BPM sample match your 80 BPM song for example. If Oneshot
is engaged the sample will play all the way to the end regardless of note-off messages.
You can use the play button to playback the sample.
The Matrix Sampler responds to messages on all MIDI channels, so the Channel value typically doesn't
matter. It does matter if you're recording using the Keyboard Splitter or using multiple keyboards: in these
situations you'll want only messages received on this channel to be recognized.
The Matrix Sampler supports the following MIDI messages:
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Note On/Off
Volume (cont. 7)
Expression (cont. 11)
The cells are mapped to MIDI notes 36..51.
8.6 External MIDI Instruments
An External MIDI Instrument sends the track's MIDI data to a MIDI Out device. This can be either a MIDI (or
USB) connector, a synth on the soundcard, or a software emulation of such a device.
External MIDI Instrument window
Patch section
The large display in the Patch section shows the name of the patch. Clicking the Select button lets you
select a patch by name. The names are stored in a Patch Map file. The small button can be used to select
the Patch Map file that corresponds to your MIDI device (the default file can be selected in the MIDI Out
Device Options window).
The Bank:prog display indicates the bank (optional) and the program used. Bank and program are numbers
(0..16383 and 0..127 respectively) separated by ':' (for example: 1:2 means Bank 1 and Program 2). The
bank/program value can be altered by left clicking it. Pressing Enter will accept the new value. Pressing Esc
will cancel the operation. You can use the Page Up/Down and Up/Down Arrow keys to change the bank and
program values.
Channel indicates the MIDI channel being used. If this channel is a special percussion channel (according to
the Patch Map) the Percussion Channel button will light. This button can be used to toggle between the
percussion channel and a non-percussion channel. The button doesn't appear if the Midi Out Device doesn't
have a percussion channel.
Controls section
The Controls section affects the way the patch sounds.
Detune detunes the patch using Pitch Bend messages (the pitch bend range is assumed to be 2 semitones).
The value is stored in the MIDI file as RPN 1.
Bright, Reverb and Chorus control MIDI controllers 74, 91 an 93 respectively. Some synths (e.g.
SoundBlaster Live!) may need to be set up properly in order to respond to controllers 91 and 93 (Reverb and
Chorus). Controller 74 (Brightness) may not be supported by your synthesizer.
The MIDI Out Device
A MIDI Out Device can be either a MIDI connector or a synth on the soundcard. MultitrackStudio Pro
supports four devices, lower editions supports two MIDI Out devices. To select MIDI Out devices go to the
Studio menu's Devices window and click Select Devices.
The MIDI In and MIDI Out device are connected by default (messages received on an incoming channel are
forwarded to the corresponding outgoing channel). When a software instrument is used in record mode the
MIDI In channel being used is disconnected from the MIDI Out channel.
Note: Interconnecting a MIDI In and MIDI Out device creates a loop that will slow down (and ultimately halt)
your computer. MultitrackStudio will detect this loop and disconnect the MIDI in and out devices in order to
avoid freezing the computer.
Virtual MIDI channels
A MIDI Out Device contains 16 MIDI channels. MIDI Out devices are virtualized by MultitrackStudio,
meaning that a single MIDI channel on a MIDI Out device can be used by more than one stream.
MultitrackStudio will automatically take care of playing each note using its own stream's patch and
controllers. Obviously, this only works if streams using the same MIDI channel don't play notes at the same
time.
The following controllers have a default value, and don't need any attention:
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Modulation (#1)
Volume (#7)
Pan (#10)
Expression (#11)
Sustain (#64)
Soft (#67)
Brightness (#74)
Reverb (#91)
Chorus (#93)
Aftertouch
Pitch
All other controllers do not have a default value. If they are used in one stream they should be defined in all
other streams using the same channel on the same MIDI Out Device.
8.7 VSTi Plugins
A VSTi (VST Instrument ) is a VST Plugin that can convert MIDI events to audio. You can select a VSTi by
clicking the instrument slot's down arrow. The VSTi plugins appear in the list's 'VSTi Plugins' section
(Windows) / 'VSTi and AUi Plugins' section (Mac).
A VST or VSTi plugin will initially appear in both Effect and Instrument selectors. The first time it is loaded
MultitrackStudio determines whether it's an effect and/or an instrument. From then on it will appear in the
appropriate selector only.
VST Instruments look like VST Plugins. They have an additional Channel Selector. Some VSTi plugins
respond to all MIDI channels the same way, in this case the channel setting doesn't matter unless you're
recording using the Keyboard Splitter or multiple keyboards. Other plugins, especially the ones providing
many different sounds, do always require the correct channel to be specified.
VST Instruments respond to all the streams that are in the track's MIDI file. However, in most cases it will be
easier to use multiple tracks (each using an instance of the VSTi) instead.
If the plugin has more than two outputs an Output button will be available. On clicking this button the Output
Mixer window will appear. This mixer mixes the plugin's outputs down to stereo.
Tip (Pro edition only): The outputs of a multiple output VSTi plugin can be routed to tracks using sidechaining
(see External Sidechain Routing). You can use this if you'd rather mix the outputs in the main window rather
than the VSTi Output Mixer window. This is especially useful for drum plugins.
If a VSTi plugin gets in a bad state somehow you can press the F5 key (Windows) / Command-R (Mac) while
the plugin interface is visible. This will save the settings, reload the plugin and load the settings again. This
doesn't work while the transport is running.
Overriding drum instrument names
Some plugins fail to supply drum instrument names, so the drum editor just shows 'C5' etc. You can create a
text file to supply drum instrument names yourself. If a plugin is called Plugin.dll (Windows) / Plugin.vst (Mac)
the text file must be called Plugin_MtStudio.txt. The file must appear in the same directory as the plugin
itself. The file must be a plain text file. NotePad (Windows) / TextEdit (Mac) can be used to create/edit such
files.
The file should look like this:
[drum]
36=Bass
38=Snare
8.8 AUi Plugins
Note: AUi Plugins are supported in the Mac version only. If a song with an AUi plugin is opened with
MultitrackStudio for Windows a Missing Instrument placeholder will appear.
An AUi (Audio Unit Instrument) is a AU Plugin that can convert MIDI events to audio. You can select an AUi
by clicking the instrument slot's down arrow. The AUi plugins appear in the list's 'VSTi and AUi Plugins'
section.
AU Instruments look like AU Plugins. They have an additional Channel Selector. Some AUi plugins respond
to all MIDI channels the same way, in this case the channel setting doesn't matter unless you're recording
using the Keyboard Splitter or multiple keyboards. Other plugins, especially the ones providing many
different sounds, do always require the correct channel to be specified.
AU Instruments respond to all the streams that are in the track's MIDI file. However, in most cases it will be
easier to use multiple tracks (each using an instance of the AU Instrument) instead.
8.9 DXi Plugins
Note: DXi plugins are considered obsolete, and support for them is disabled by default. You can enabled DXi
plugin support by opening a song that uses a DXi plugin. Alternatively you can go to the Studio menu's
Preferences window and press Ctrl+Alt+Shift+D.
DXi plugin support is available in the 32-bit Windows version only.
A DXi (DirectX Instrument) is a DX Plugin that can convert MIDI events to audio. You can select a DXi by
clicking the instrument slot's down arrow. The DXi plugins appear in the list's 'VSTi and DXi Plugins' section.
DX Instruments look like DX Plugins. They have an additional Channel Selector. Some DXi plugins respond
to all MIDI channels the same way, in this case the channel setting doesn't matter unless you're recording
using the Keyboard Splitter or multiple keyboards. Other plugins, especially the ones providing many
different sounds, do always require the correct channel to be specified.
DX Instruments respond to all the streams that are in the track's MIDI file. However, in most cases it will be
easier to use multiple tracks (each using an instance of the DX Instrument) instead.
If a plugin is available in both VSTi and DXi format it is recommended to use the VSTi plugin as they have
less overhead and better timing accuracy.
9 Automation
Note: this feature is available in the Pro edition only.
The mixer sections and audio effects can be automated (ie. the knobs can be programmed to turn
automatically while the transport is running). This can be used to change a track's pan position, to add more
reverb to part of a track etc.
All automation movements have to be programmed using a control's Automation Editor, which works just like
an Automated Fader effect. It's not possible to record fader or knob movements directly. To pop up a
control's Automation Editor you should click the Automation button in the bottom right corner of the main
window first, and then click the control. Alternatively you can simply rightclick the control. The VIEW button
can be used to add tabs for other automatable parameters of the mixer section/effect. Using the tabs you
can switch between parameters easily.
If the mixer section is a track or the effect is in a track the track's audio/MIDI data is displayed in the
background. Scrubbing will be available as well, it uses the parameter values at the needle position and
doesn't include any effects.
Automation Editor
A small blue square appears in the bottom right corner of an automated control. Automation can be undone
by deleting all dots in the editor (click Sel All followed by Delete). An automated control can still be controlled
using the mouse. This will move the whole automation curve, as it appears in the control's Automation Editor,
up or down.
Automated fader and rotary knob (note the blue squares)
9.1 Mixer Automation
A mixer section's Volume fader and the Pan and Effect Send knobs can be automated.
Note: Automation doesn't work for a MIDI track using an External MIDI Instrument while the track is
recording.
9.2 Effect Automation
The rotary knobs of all audio effects can be automated. The Band Effect, the Convolutor's Delay knob and
the Guitar Amp's Cntr/Edge and Output knobs can't be automated. The Compressor's Autogain button has
no effect if the Threshold, Ratio or Gain knobs are automated.
'Delay' type knobs may cause glitches while turning. It's best to move these knobs in a quiet part. This
applies to the following knobs:
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Chorus, Doubler, Echo, Flanger: Delay.
Master Limiter: Ahead.
Reverb: Predelay.
Pseudo Stereo: Color (Comb mode only)
Vibrato: all.
Guitar Amp: Cntr/Edge (not a 'delay type knob', but it does glitch)
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Phaser: Notches (not a 'delay type knob', but it does glitch)
VST, AU and DX plugins can be automated too. To pop up the effect's Automation Editor you should click
the Automation button in the bottom right corner of the main window first, and then click the right hand side
of the effect window (the area where the Bypass and OK buttons are). Right clicking this area also works,
and even right clicking the plugin's user interface will work with many plugins. The plugin user interface knob
movements will lead by approximately 0.75 seconds compared to the audible results (ie. you see the knobs
move before you hear their effect on the sound). VST plugins that don't supply their own user interface (the
ones that get the standard MultitrackStudio knobs) suffer only partially from this phenomena: knob rotations
don't lead, but the values below the knobs do lead.
A multiple output VST plugin's output mixer can be automated too.
10 Editing
Each track has an editor that can be opened using the Edit button located on the right hand side of the track.
The Tempo Editor affects the tempo of MIDI tracks, and optionally audio tracks as well. The Song Editor can
remove or insert parts and affects "everything" (tracks, automation, markers etc.).
All editors feature a "needle" which indicates the current transport position (its position equals the value of
the transport's position indicator). The thumb at the top of the needle can be moved using the mouse. At the
top of every editor is a Time Bar that shows either seconds or bars (can be changed in the Editing Options
section). Clicking this bar will move the needle to the corresponding position and the transport's position
indicator will be updated accordingly. You can also grab the time bar with the mouse and drag it left or right.
In this case the transport position remains unchanged unless the needle moves out of the visible area.
Double-clicking the needle thumb starts the transport, clicking the time bar stops it.
Selecting a part
A part can be selected by left-clicking the editor's display and dragging the mouse while keeping the mouse
button down. The selection can be resized by dragging its beginning or end. The editor will scroll horizontally
automatically if the mouse approaches the left or right side of the editor.
Selecting, before and after
Resize, before and after
Moving or copying a part
The selected part can be moved. The part is copied if the Ctrl key (Windows) / Option key (Mac) is pressed
while moving.
Move, before and after
Copy (Ctrl key (Windows) / Option key (Mac)), before and after
Stretching or warping a part
Resizing the selected part while the Alt key (Windows) / Command key (Mac) is pressed stretches (or
shrinks) the part. The part can be 'warped' using this key as well. It's recommended to make sure any
monophonic audio tracks use the monophonic transpose algorithm. Use their editor's Edit button to access
this option (a part needs to be selected for this button to be enabled).
Stretch (use Alt key (Windows) / Command key (Mac)), before and after
Warp (use Alt key (Windows) / Command key (Mac)), before and after
Tweakable Edits
MultitrackStudio features 'tweakable edits', which means that after performing an edit (for instance pasting
some audio) you can tweak the edit (for instance adjust position and length of the pasted part, adjust
volume, or even add effects). Every time you make an adjustment the initial edit will be completely redone,
thus ensuring optimal sound quality. Note that Undo will undo the whole (initial) edit, not the last tweak only.
An edit is tweakable as long as the selected part is surrounded by a dotted line.
Common Editor features
Most editors feature the following buttons:
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Undo: Undo edit.
Redo: Redo an edit that was undone previously.
Delete: Deletes the selected part.
Copy: Copies the selected part to the clipboard.
Paste: Paste from the clipboard to the editor. The data on the clipboard will be placed at the current
transport position (that's where the needle is).
Sel All: Selects all.
In addition the "More" buttons offers:
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Cut: Copies the selected part to the clipboard and then deletes the selected part.
Repeat: Repeats the selected part a number of times.
All editors have a popup menu with these options:
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Find Selected Part: Adjusts the transport position so the selected part becomes visible.
Unselect
Select Left: Select left hand part.
Select Right: Select right hand part.
Editing Options
The editing options area at the top of the main window contains several options concerning editing.
Editing options
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Time Sig / Tempo: Editing these values change the Time Signature or Tempo of the whole song (from
start to end). If the tempo isn't constant throughout the song the various tempo value's will be adjusted
proportionally. Right-clicking either box shows the Tempo/Time Signature Editor.
These options are available only if there is at least one MIDI track.
The down arrow next to the Tempo box offers 3 options:
¡ Tempo / Time Signature Editor: open this editor.
¡ Tap Tempo: tap a new tempo on the space bar.
¡ Extract tempo from track: This track has to contain beats only (ie. you can't extract tempo from
an album track or a guitar solo track). Typically, one will have to record a track while playing
back the song. The track can be either MIDI (tap the beat on the MIDI keyboard) or audio (clap
your hands to the beat, counting "one two three four" will probably work too if done "staccato").
The track containing the beats can be selected from a list containing all the song's tracks. Also,
you can specify what the beats represent (quarter notes, 8th notes etc.). After extracting the
tempo you can edit the Time Signature manually. Typically, the length of the first measure (#0)
will be adjusted so the second measure (#1) coincides with the start of the song. This might
require the use of a weird time signature like 27/4 in the first measure.
Song Editor: shows the Song Editor.
Ripple: When active pasted (or drag-and-dropped) parts will be inserted. Existing data will be
overwritten otherwise. Ripple mode will usually be off in order to avoid misaligned tracks.
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Snap: Turning on Snap makes the start and end point of all currently selected parts snap to the
(visible) grid. All subsequent mouse movements will snap to the grid as well. Use the Zoom In and
Zoom Out functions to change the grid.
Bars: Grid in bars. Also, MIDI paste and drag operations will be done in beats instead of seconds
(e.g., if you move a slow part to a fast part it will be made faster).
Zoom In/Out: Use the Zoom In and Zoom Out functions to change the horizontal scale of the editors
(all editors have the same time scale). The current scale is displayed on the bottom bar. Scale 1:1
means that one screen pixel represents one audio sample. Zooming out will put more samples on a
pixel.
Editing Options menu: provides access to various editors. If the main window is small some items
from the editing options area may be moved to the menu.
10.1 Editing Tracks
Each track has an editor that can be opened using the Edit button located on the right hand side of the track.
MIDI tracks are capable of editing individual events when viewed as Pianoroll, Score or Drum (see MIDI
Event Editing). The Controller Editor can be used to edit MIDI controllers like Volume or Sustain.
Common track editor buttons
Track Editors feature the following buttons:
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Undo: Undo edit.
Redo: Redo an edit that was undone previously.
Edit: Shows an Edit Control window. Using this window volume changes, fades etc. can be applied to
the selected part. Edit Controls can have different features on different editors.
Delete: Deletes the selected part.
Copy: Copies the selected part to the clipboard.
Paste: Paste from the clipboard to the editor. The data on the clipboard will be placed at the current
transport position (that's where the needle is).
Sel All: Selects the whole track.
The More button offers:
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Cut: Copies the selected part to the clipboard and then deletes the selected part.
Merge Paste: Works like Paste, but existing data is not deleted.
Repeat: Repeats the selected part a number of times.
Export: Save the selected part to a new file.
Moving audio or MIDI between tracks.
Data can be copied to another track by dragging and dropping, or by using the clipboard functions. In either
case MultitrackStudio automatically converts between mono and stereo audio if necessary. MIDI is
converted to audio and vice versa automatically as well. Audio to MIDI conversion works with monophonic
(ie. just one note sounds at a time) audio only. The reliability of the note recognition process depends on the
audio signal. Some editing will typically be necessary to fix some errors.
MIDI to audio conversion makes use of a software instruments. This software instrument appears on the Edit
Control window of the receiving track.
Using an editor's Cut, Copy and Paste options you can move or copy a part to this or another editor. This
process uses the clipboard. MultitrackStudio doesn't use the operating system clipboard, but temporary files
instead.
Audio/MIDI Clips
Clips (pieces of audio or MIDI) can be stored on the Clip Shelf. The clip shelf appears upon
clicking the vertical bar on the left side of the MultitrackStudio window.
Pieces of audio or MIDI can be dragged from track editors to the clip shelf and vice versa.
Clips can be removed by dragging them to the Garbage Bin in the bottom left corner of the
window.
Clip Shelf
Dropping audio/MIDI files on track editors
Audio and MIDI files can be dragged from Windows Explorer (Windows) / Finder (Mac) to a track's editor.
Some VST plugins allow dragging audio or MIDI from their user interface to a track editor as well. The
sample rate of audio files will be converted to the song's samplerate if necessary. "ACIDized" wav files will
converted to the song tempo.
10.2 Editing Audio Tracks
The Edit button shows/hides the track's editor. The editor shows a graphical representation of the audio
signal. A part of it can be selected using the mouse (press left button and drag).
Audio track (mono) with editor
The two channels of a stereo track will be displayed separately. Editing just one channel of a stereo track is
not possible.
At the bottom of the editor the common editor buttons appear (see Common Editor Features).
Understanding audio editing
Audio editing is always non-destructive. This means that the file containing the original recording remains
unaffected. When an audio file is being edited for the first time a .aem file will be created. This file contains a
reference to the original audio file. It can contain references to one or more edit files as well. An edit files
replaces a part of the original file. Edit file names look like "trackname - Edit123456.wav", where 123456 is a
unique sequence of random characters.
Example: Guitar.gjm is being edited. Guitar.aem will be created. A file called "Guitar - Edit123456.wav" will
be created (this file contains audio data). Guitar.aem contains information on what files to play when.
The files referenced by a .aem file can be viewed in a track's Properties window.
Note: Do not delete edit files manually in order to avoid losing edits or punch-in recordings. Use the Clean up
Song Folder tool instead.
Crossfades are applied automatically in order to avoid clicks. The crossfades behave just like traditional tape
splices.
Audio Edit Control
The Audio Edit Control, invoked by clicking the Edit button, can be used to manipulate the selected part in
various ways.
Audio Edit Control window
Audio Edit Controls have the following features:
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Volume fader: Changes the volume of the selected part. Note: In most cases it is better to use an
Automated Fader effect to change volume levels of certain parts of a track, as this leaves the audio file
untouched.
Fade: Performs a fade in or fade out on the selected part.
Reverse: Reverses the select part.
Transpose: Pitch shifts the audio signal by the specified amount of semitones and cents. This features
is powered by Zynaptiq's ZTX technology.
Preserve Format corrects the formant to make the transposed signal sound like the original (ie. to
avoid the 'chipmunk' effect).
Two algorithms are available: Polyphonic and Monophonic. If the audio track is monophonic you can
switch to Monophonic which is faster and offers better sound quality. The selected algorithm is used
for stretching and warping as well.
Pitch correction: see Vocal Pitch Correction.
Normalize: Makes the selected part as loud as possible.
Effect Slots: The Effect Slots can contain effects such as EQ or reverb.
Note: Normalizing a file introduces rounding errors and thus compromises sound quality, especially with 16
bit files. Both normalizing individual tracks and normalizing the final mix are bad habits. The Master Limiter
effect should be used to make the final mix as loud as possible.
Dragging audio by a small amount
For best results the Ctrl key (Windows) / Option key (Mac) can be pressed while dragging audio by a small
amount. This is best explained using an example:
Consider a word in a vocal track that's a bit too early. You can select the word (including some surrounding
"studio silence") and drag it to the right. Now a piece of silence will appear on the left side of the selected
part. This happens because the original word is removed. Better result may be obtained using the Ctrl key
(Windows) / Option key (Mac). Now the piece is copied instead of moved, so the original word will stay in
place. The result is that the background noise that appears just before the word is repeated once. This
usually is less objectionable than plain silence.
Deleting audio
A part of an audio track can be deleted using the track editor's Delete button. However, it can be more
convenient to take advantage of the Tweakable Edit feature. After selecting the part you want to delete click
the Edit button and drag the Volume fader all the way left and click Apply. Now the part is deleted, and you
can fine-tune the edit by dragging and/or resizing the selected part. In critical cases, where the Delete
function results in noticeable silence, you can consider pasting a recording of "studio silence" instead of
using the Delete function.
Sometimes you might want to truncate a file destructively (eg. a master file which appears to be a bit too
long), rather than turning it into a .aem file. You can rightclick an audio track's editor and choose "Truncate
File" to truncate the file at the mouse position. Note however that this is a destructive operation which cannot
be undone. Use a track editor's Export function instead if you feel you don't fully understand this.
Scrubbing
The editor has a built-in "scrubber", meaning that you can actually hear the part being selected. This can
help in finding the desired location, in addition to the visual clues given by the editor. With tape recorders this
was done by moving the reels manually ("reel rocking"), now it can be done by moving the mouse. The
scrubber is active while moving the needle, while selecting a new part, and while resizing an existing
selection.
The speed and pitch of the scrubbing sound are determined by the mouse movements. Spectral filtering is
applied to avoid damage to loudspeakers or ears by excessive high or sub-low frequency content.
This feature can be turned on/off in the Preferences window.
10.3 Vocal Pitch Correction
The audio track editors feature vocal pitch correction powered by Zynaptiq's ZTX technology. It's typically
easier to use the Vocal Tuner effect instead. Using the editor options can be a better choice in these
situations:
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The vocal track is stereo (the Vocal Tuner is a mono effect).
You want to use a MIDI guide track (see below).
You're computer is too slow for running the Vocal Tuner effect in real time.
Basic pitch correction
Pitch correction is very easy if the vocal track is just a little bit out of tune:
1. Select the part you want to process in the track's editor.
2. Click the editor's Edit button to pop up the Audio Edit Control.
3. Click the Pitch Correction button and then click Apply.
The More button shows more pitch correction controls. Speed controls the speed of the pitch correction. If
it's fast the result will sound synthetic (the "Cher effect"). If it's too low the first part of a note may not be fully
pitch corrected. Detune can be used if the song isn't in concert pitch.
Audio Edit Control, Pitch correction options opened
Excluding notes
If the vocal track has severe pitch problems you may find that the Basic pitch correction method produces
the wrong notes. That happens if the vocals are so much out of tune it's closer to a neighboring note than to
the intended note. You can exclude notes to solve this problem:
1. In the Audio Edit Control click the More button to show the "Pitch correction options".
2. In the "Target notes" section you can turn off notes which aren't in the selected vocal part. After
applying pitch correction the vocal track will have "on" notes only. Clicking the down arrow pops up a
menu which offers various presets like major and minor scales.
3. Now click Apply to apply the new settings.
Changing the melody
If excluding notes doesn't give you enough flexibility, or if you want to change the melody, you can use a
MIDI track to specify the notes. If you don't have a suitable MIDI track already you can use the built-in audio
to MIDI conversion feature to create a MIDI track:
1. Add a MIDI track using the "Add Track" menu.
2. Open the MIDI track's editor and the vocal track's editor.
3. In the vocal track editor select the part you're interested in, drag it to the MIDI track editor and drop it
there.
Now you can use this MIDI track to guide the pitch correction:
1. In the Audio Edit Control make sure the "Pitch correction options" are visible.
2. Select the MID track in the "MIDI guide track" box.
3. Now click Apply to apply the new settings.
If you're not happy with the results you can edit the MIDI track, go to the Audio Edit Control and click Apply
again.
Preserve Formant can be used if the pitch changes more than approx. a semitone.
Note: the "Target Notes" section can still be used while using a MIDI guide track, but it only affects the parts
where no MIDI notes are playing.
10.4 Editing MIDI Tracks
The Edit button on the righthand side of the track shows/hides the track's editor. The editor can show the
MIDI notes in three different ways: Pianoroll, Score and Drum. The tabs on the right (Piano/Score/Drum) can
be used to switch between these editors. The default editor is Pianoroll, this can be changed in the
Preferences window.
All three editors can edit MIDI as if it were audio, and they can edit the MIDI notes themselves as well. This
section deals with editing MIDI as if it were audio, the next sections cover editing notes and controllers.
MIDI track with pianoroll editor
At the bottom of the editor the common track editor buttons appear (see Common track editor buttons).
Editing actions, like paste, delete or undo, affect both notes and controllers.
MIDI edits are not written to disk immediately. When a track is closed (this also happens when the song is
closed) a window appears asking whether to save the changes or not. If you want to save the changes
explicitly you can use the File Options Menu's Save option.
MIDI tracks have built-in scrubbing features similar to audio tracks.
MIDI Edit Control
The MIDI Edit Control, invoked by clicking the editor's Edit button, can be used to manipulate the selected
part in various ways.
MIDI Edit Control window
MIDI Edit Controls have the following features:
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Volume fader: Changes the volume of the selected part.
Fade: Performs a fade in or fade out on the selected part.
Dynamics: Compress (0..100%) or expand (100..400%) the dynamic range of the notes.
Reverse: Reverses the select part.
Transpose: Transpose all notes in the selected part by a number of semitones.
Legato: Note durations are adjusted to make note-to-note transitions smoother. Can be used to make
'smooth' instruments like violins sound more natural.
Quantize: Notes that are slightly too early or too late are moved towards the correct positions. The
amount of correction can be from 5% up to 100% ('hard quantizing'). The box below the "%" box sets
the resolution.
Three categories are available:
¡ Normal: 1/1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16 or 1/32 note.
¡ Swing: 1/8 or 1/16 note. The 2nd, 4th, 6th (and so on) notes of a bar are delayed. The swing
percentage can be 52..71% (50% means "no swing").
¡ Triplet: Triplet of 1/4, 1/8, 1/16 or 1/32 notes.
Three types of quantization are available:
¡ Full: quantize both note-on and note-off.
¡ Keep Note-Off: quantize note-on, don't touch note-off. This is the default type.
¡ Keep Duration: quantize note-on, move note-off to keep duration the same.
Humanize: Shifts note events a (small) random amount of time, and changes the note volumes
slightly.
10.5 Editing Notes
The Pianoroll, Score and Drum editors not only can select a part of a track (like an audio editor), they can
select or add notes as well. You can use this to correct the odd mistake, but you can also use it to build
tracks from scratch.
The Pianoroll, Score and Drum editors share many common properties:
Editor Modes
The editor can work in one of three modes:
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Select Part: works just like an audio editor, ie. the mouse doesn't "see" the notes at all.
Select Notes: clicking a note selects it, pressing the mouse in "empty space" and moving it lassoes
notes. Selected notes can be moved.
Add Notes: clicking in "empty space" adds a note, clicking a note selects it. Moving the selected note
(s) is possible as well.
The buttons in the bottom left corner can be used to switch mode. The Alt key
(Windows) / Option key (Mac) can be used to temporarily switch between Select Notes
and Add Notes mode: in Select Notes mode you can add a note using this key, in Add
Notes mode you can lasso notes using this key.
Mode buttons
Adding Notes
In Add Notes mode notes can be added by clicking the mouse.
Selecting Notes
In Select Notes or Add Notes mode a note can be selected by clicking it. Multiple notes can be selected by
keeping the Ctrl key (Windows) / Command key (Mac) down while clicking a note. In Select Notes mode you
can also lasso a rectangular region. Selected notes appear in red.
Lasso in action
Moving Notes
Notes can be moved using the mouse. The editor will scroll automatically if the mouse approaches any of the
four sides of the editors. Notes that are being added, dragged or selected are audible. This feature can be
turned on/off in the Preferences window.
Changing Note Velocity
The Note Editor (see below) can be used to change a note's velocity (volume). It can be
done faster using the 'V' mouse modifier key (see Mouse Modifiers): press the left mouse
button while keeping the 'V' key down. A vertical slider pops up which can be controlled by
moving the mouse. The slider disappears upon releasing the mouse button.
Note Velocity
Note Editor
If a single note is selected clicking the Edit button will pop up the Note Editor. Alternatively you can doubleclick the note.
If the Time Scale is set to bars the Position of the note is expressed in bars and beats, and the Duration of
the note is expressed in musical notes (ie. 0.25 is a quarter note). Values like '1/4' can be typed in the
Duration box as well. The down array next to the Duration box can be used to select a value from a
predefined list.
The Edit button pops up a slightly different window if multiple notes are selected.
Note Editor
Multiple Notes Editor
Popup menus
Rightclicking (Windows) / Ctrl-clicking (Mac) a note pops up a menu offering Edit and Delete functionality.
Doing the same in 'empty space' pops up a menu to add notes or chords.
10.6 Pianoroll Editor
Pianoroll editor
In Add Notes mode notes can be drawn by moving the mouse horizontally while keeping the left mouse
button down. Clicking the mouse without dragging it will add a note having the same duration as the last one.
Notes can be dragged or resized using the mouse in both Select Notes and Add Notes mode.
The name of the chord constituted by the selected notes will be displayed in the editor while selecting.
Right clicking a note pops up a menu to (among other things) split the note or to join it with the previous note.
Step Recording
The Pianoroll editor can be used for step recording. If the vertically oriented piano on the left is clicked while
the Ctrl key (Windows) / Command key (Mac) is held down, the corresponding note will be recorded at the
current transport position. Also, the transport position will move to the end of the new note. The duration of
the new note equals one step of the current grid. You can add the Shift key to go one step to the left before
the note is added, so you can easily add a couple of notes at the same position.
Clicking while keeping the Alt key (Windows) / Options key (Mac) down adds a rest (ie. the transport position
moves to the right). You can add the Shift key to go one step to the left instead.
10.7 Score Editor
Score editor
Adding Notes
In Add Notes mode notes can be added by leftclicking the mouse. The dropdown list next to the Add Notes
mode button determines the duration of notes being added. Keeping the S or F key down while clicking the
mouse adds or subtracts a semitone ('Sharp' or 'Flat'), so you can add notes that are not in the current scale
directly.
The b and # buttons can be used to transpose the selected notes one semitone down or up. Right clicking a
note pops up a menu to (among other things) join the note with the previous note.
In order to improve readability notes will be moved horizontally, so notes are
spaced nicely without any overlaps. This means that, unlike all other
MultitrackStudio editors, the notes don't necessarily line up visually with other
Helper grid
tracks. The bar lines, however, always do. In Add Notes mode a one-bar helper grid
will be displayed to help you find the position of new notes. You may have to zoom in a bit in order to be able
to put short notes (16th, 32nd) at the place you want them to be.
The Score editor has a resolution of 1/32nd note. It snaps to the grid automatically, regardless of the Snap
setting. Although it is possible to use the Score editor when the time scale is set to seconds, this obviously
doesn't make sense.
Tuplets
Triplets, quintuplets and septuplets are recognized automatically. Tuplets can be added by right clicking the
editor, and picking one out of the items in the menu's Add Tuplet section. Alternatively you can add a note
and use the 'More...' button's 'Split in equal parts' option.
Clef and Key Signature
The section on the left shows the clef and the key signature. Clicking this section pops up the editor's Score
Settings window. In this window you can choose the clef, possible values are Bass, Treble, both Bass and
Treble, Tenor and Alto. The Octave setting can be used for instruments which are notated one octave off.
The 8va bassa setting is suitable for bass guitar and double bass, for example. The Transposition settings
can be used for transposing instruments like Bb clarinets. When both Bass and Treble staffs are used the
Split Point setting determines which notes appear on either the Bass or the Treble staff. The Octave and
Transposition settings aren't available in this case.
The Key Signature is a value ranging from 7 flats up to 7 sharps. Key signature changes throughout the
song can be programmed after clicking the Edit Changes link. Key signature changes always occur at the
start of a bar. When any changes are present the left hand section shows the key signature of the first bar
that's (partially) visible. The key signature settings affect all MIDI tracks. It is stored in the MIDI files.
Score Settings
10.8 Drum Editor
Drum editor
The Drum Editor features a horizontal strip called a Drum Instrument Editor for each instrument used. The
drum instrument's name is shown on the left hand side of the Drum Instrument Editor. A different instrument
can be selected upon doubleclicking it. New instruments can be added by clicking Add Instr. Every
instrument corresponds to a MIDI note (eg. C3 is a bass drum, E3 is a snare and B4 is a hihat in General
MIDI). The note corresponding to the instrument will be shown in case no name is available. Drum
Instrument Editors work like any other MultitrackStudio editor. Drum instruments can be reordered by
dragging the instrument names (on the left) up or down.
In Add Notes mode notes can be added by leftclicking the mouse. Notes appear in the editor as diamond
shapes. The note's volume is indicated by a small black dot (the higher the dot the higher the volume).
In Select Part mode you can select a part of the track by moving the mouse vertically while selecting a part.
If the mouse ends on the same instrument as it started only this instrument is selected, if it ends on a
different one all instruments are selected. The Select All button selects only the instrument if a part of an
instrument is selected, it selects all instruments otherwise. You can switch from 'one instrument' mode to 'all
instruments' mode and vice versa by clicking an instrument's name.
If audio is drag-and-dropped from an audio track editor to a drum instrument editor only beats are detected
(no pitch). You can, for example, tap a drum break on the table, record it as audio and move it to a drum
editor.
Selecting similar notes
A menu appears if you rightclick a note. It has a Select similar notes option which selects all similar notes
in similar bars. "Similar note" means a note at the same position (eg. at beat 1). "Similar bar" means a bar
having the same time signature. You can use this feature to, for example, select all hihat hits which are on
beat 1 and make them all a bit louder.
If multiple notes are selected "Select similar notes" will work on the selected notes only. You can, for
example, lasso all choruses and then select a particular note within the choruses.
10.9 Controller Editor
MIDI instruments can use controller events to alter the sound they generate. A track editor's CONTR button
opens/closes the Controller Editor. The editors appear as tabs, which can be added or removed using the
VIEW button. All controllers are supported except the data entry and RPN controllers (#5, #38 and
#96...101).
Tip: in MultitrackStudio Instruments and External MIDI Instrument windows you can rightclick a control to
make the corresponding controller editor visible.
Note: the controller editor's Undo/Redo buttons do exactly the same as the main editor's, ie. both work on
both note and controller edits.
Note Velocity Editor
The editor that appears by default actually doesn't control a MIDI controller but note velocities instead. Note
velocities are represented by vertical bars which can be moved up or down with the mouse. A halo appears
around the corresponding note in the pianoroll/score/drum editor so you can easily see which note the bar
belongs to.
The Mode buttons in the bottom-left corner offer Bar mode, to move bars up and down, and Draw mode, to
draw a curve to which the bars will be adjusted.
Note Velocity Editor
Switching Controller Editors
Controllers #64..#69 are 'switching" controllers: they are either 'on' or 'off'. The Sustain and Soft controllers
are of the switching type. A switching controller's editor is a horizontal line that can be up or down. Up means
off, down means on, just like a piano sustain or soft pedal.
The editor can be in one of two modes:
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Select: the mouse selects a part. You can then use the On or Off buttons.
Draw: the mouse draws a line. Doing this on the upper half of the editor switches the controller off.
Using the lower half switches it on.
The buttons in the bottom left corner can be used to switch mode. The Alt key (Windows) / Option key (Mac)
can be used to temporarily switch between modes.
Scrubbing is available for all modes.
Switching Controller Editor
Continuous Controller Editors
All other editors use dots to represent the controller value. They work just like Automated Fader effects.
Scrubbing is available in Select mode only.
Continuous Controller Editor
Pitch Bend Range
The Pitch editor features a small button labeled R in the bottom left corner. It pops up a window which lets
you change the pitch bend range. Valid values are 0..24 semitones.
External MIDI Instruments won't pick up the new value until the transport is restarted. Other instruments will
pick up the new value when a pitch bend event appears.
Note: External MIDI Instruments and VSTi/DXi plugins may not support changing the pitch bend range.
10.10 MIDI Pattern Editing
MIDI pattern editing can be started by loading a .mpt file in a track. Alternatively, a .mid file can be loaded
and then be saved in .mpt format using the File Options Menu.
Once an .mpt file has been loaded a Pattern Bar will appear on top of the track's editor.
Drum track with patterns
A pattern is a small piece of MIDI music. It will generally have a size that makes sense in musical terms (eg.
a bar, four bars, or a verse).
A new pattern can be created in two ways:
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Select a part of the Pattern Bar and click the New Ptn button. The Pattern Editor will appear
automatically.
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Select a part of the track editor and click the New Ptn button. A new pattern will be created and all
notes that were in the selected part will be moved to the pattern.
The most important feature of the pattern editing concept is that a pattern can have multiple instances (the
pattern can appear more than once on the Pattern Bar). Changing the pattern will change all instances.
A new instance of a selected pattern can be created in three ways:
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Dragging the pattern while keeping the Ctrl key (Windows) / Option key (Mac) down copies the pattern.
Using the Repeat button
Using Copy and Paste.
All editor buttons (Cut, Copy, Paste etc.) work as expected when working on the selected part of the Pattern
Bar. You can select either a single pattern (by clicking it), or a part with all patterns that are in it (you can
press the Alt key (Windows) / Command key (Mac) while selecting to avoid selecting a single pattern).
The track editor can be used as if it's an ordinary MIDI track. Patterns that are in the selected area will be
moved or removed when the selected area is dragged or deleted. Editing individual notes is also possible.
If a note that belongs to a pattern is modified the modifications will be remembered by the particular instance
of the pattern. If the pattern itself is changed the modifications will be applied to the note again. This works in
an additive manner: the offsets (in beats) as remembered by the instance will added to the note's position
and length. Similarly any offsets to the note itself and its volume will be added.
When a pattern is selected the Edit button will invoke the Pattern Editor. Alternatively you can double-click a
pattern.
Pattern Editor
The Pattern Editor can be used to edit a pattern. On clicking the OK button the selected pattern, and all other
instances of it, will be updated.
Pattern Editor (showing a one bar drum pattern)
Clicking the Menu button will bring up a menu with three items:
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Clone: Create a new Pattern that is identical to this one. All other instances of the original pattern will
remain untouched.
Import: Import a pattern from a MIDI file.
Export: Export the pattern to a MIDI file.
The Name box contains the name of the pattern. All instances of the pattern will have the same name. This
name doesn't mean anything to the program, ie. changing it to another pattern's name won't make the two
patterns identical. Using the same name for different patterns obviously is a bad idea.
The This Instance section contains controls that affect the selected pattern only (it does not affect any other
instances of the pattern).
Transpose can be used to transpose this instance by a number of semitones. If, for example, the pattern is
in C, you can use this feature to transpose a couple of instances to F or G.
The Reset All Events button clears all changes that have been made to this instance's events, except for
the ones that have been done with the Pattern Editor.
The Pattern Size bar determines the size of the pattern as it will appear in the track's editor.
10.11 Tempo/Time Signature Editing
The Tempo / Time Signature Editor window contains the Time Signature Editor and the Tempo Editor. It also
lets you set the number of the first bar.
Tempo / Time Signature Editor window
The Tempo / Time Signature Editor window is available only if at least one track contains a MIDI file. That's
because time signature and tempo information is stored in the MIDI files.
The tempo editor can't be used while the transport is running.
Time Signature Editing
The Time Signature (nominator/denominator) of a selected part can be changed using the Edit button.
Editing the time signature does not affect the actual notes or controller values of MIDI tracks, use the Song
Editor instead to achieve that.
The Paste and Repeat buttons take into account the global Ripple setting. The Cut and Delete buttons
always act as if Ripple is on (ie. the righthand part shifts left if you delete a part).
Tempo Editing
In Tempo Editor you can change the tempo (beats per minute, BPM). By default the tempo editor affects
MIDI tracks only. If the Audio button is checked audio tracks are affected as well. It's recommended to make
sure any monophonic audio tracks use the monophonic transpose algorithm. Use their editor's Edit button to
access this option (a part needs to be selected for this button to be enabled).
The tempo of the selected part can be changed by dragging the line up or down:
Dragging tempo line vertically, before and after
If the right hand side of the selected part is dragged while keeping the Alt key (Windows) / Command key
(Mac) down the tempo will be adjusted accordingly:
Stretch (use Alt key (Windows) / Command key (Mac)), before and after
Add the Ctrl key to create an accelerando or decelerando:
Stretch Accelerando (use Alt+Ctrl key (Windows) / Command+Ctrl key (Mac)), before and after
Any grid line in the selected part can be moved if the Alt key (Windows) / Command key (Mac) is down:
Warp (use Alt key (Windows) / Command key (Mac)), before and after
The Edit button pops up a window which lets you type a BPM value, tap the tempo on the space bar or click
the tempo on the Tap tempo box.
The Conduct feature lets you tap a new tempo. You can use this to create accelerandos etc. It works like
this:
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2.
3.
4.
5.
Select a part in the tempo editor.
Click the Conduct button. The Conduct Tempo window appears.
Press the space bar to start. Transport starts at least one bar before the selected part automatically.
Start tapping the beat on the space bar.
When the start of the selected part is reached the music will mute, and you can continue tapping the
tempo for the selected part.
6. When you've tapped enough beats transport will stop, and you can click OK to close the Conduct
Tempo window.
Conduct Tempo window
The More button gives you access to lesser used features like Delete, Cut, Copy, Paste and Repeat. Paste
and Repeat take into account the global Ripple setting. Cut and Delete always work in Ripple mode (ie. the
righthand part shifts left if you delete a part).
Edit operations affect the following items:
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MIDI tracks (the MIDI file, Automated Fader effects and automation data)
If the Audio button is checked: Audio tracks (the audio file, Automated Fader effects and automation
data)
Automated Fader effects, Vocal Tuner effects and automation data of Groups, Effect Returns and
Master sections are affected only if either the song contains no audio tracks or the Audio button is
checked.
The Detach button detaches the tracks from the Tempo Editor. In this situation the tempo information can be
edited without affecting the notes in the tracks. This feature can be used to match the tempo to a 'freestyle'
recording, or to go from, for example, 100 measures at 120 BPM to 50 measures at 60 BPM.
Note: The Click Track and Chord Tracks will be edited even if Detach is engaged. These tracks follow the
tempo (and time signature) by definition.
The Tempo Editor features tweakable edits, this helps in avoiding stretching audio parts multiple times.
Bar Numbers
The Bar numbers start at box determines the number of the first bar. The default value is 0, so music starts
at bar number 1 if the first bar is used for count-in. You can choose 1 if there's no count-in, or -1 if there's a
two bar count-in. The lower limit is -9, which equals a ten bar count-in.
10.12 Song Editor
The Song Editor can be used to insert or remove parts of a song. It always works in 'Ripple mode',
regardless of the Ripple button at the top of the main window. The song editor works in 'bar mode' if there
are any MIDI tracks, regardless of the Bars button at the top of the main window.
The song editor affects "everything":
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Audio / MIDI files opened in the tracks
Tempo and Time Signature
Key Signature (as seen in Score editors)
Chords and Lyrics
Markers
Automated Fader effects
Automation data (Pro edition)
The Song Editor can't be used while the transport is running.
Song Editor window
10.13 Multi MIDI Editor
The Multi MIDI Editor lets you work with multiple tracks in a single editor. It can be used to work on
arrangements for string or woodwind sections etc.
The Multi MIDI Editor shows and affects all MIDI tracks that have their editor opened. If you use suitable
colors for your instrument groups you can open a group in the Multi MIDI Editor quickly by rightclicking a
track's Edit button and choosing Open same color MIDI tracks in Multi MIDI Editor.
Pianoroll
The colored buttons at the bottom represent the tracks that are visible in the editor. The active one is larger
and its text is bold. Any new notes you add will be in the active track. Selected notes can be moved to the
active track using the Move button. In case of overlapping notes the active track will appear in front of the
others.
Multi MIDI Editor window, showing 3 tracks in pianoroll view
Score
Each track gets its own staff (or a system of both bass and treble staffs). Selected notes can be moved to
another staff using drag-and-drop.
Multi MIDI Editor window, showing 3 tracks in score view
Drum
The colored buttons at the bottom only serve to show the names of the tracks. The drum instruments appear
in the same order, and the notes appear in the corresponding colors. The Drum Instrument Selector, which
appears on clicking the NEW INST button lists the instruments available in all the track's MIDI instruments.
The track numbers, as they appear on the colored buttons, appear in the selector as well.
Edits in a single instrument are not tweakable, unlike a track's drum editor.
10.14 Multitrack Editing
Note: this feature is available in the Pro edition only.
Using the Multitrack Editor, which can be shown using the Editing Options menu, multiple tracks can be
edited simultaneously. The Multitrack Editor affects all tracks that have their editor opened.
Hint: Use the Song Editor if you want to edit all tracks including tempo, automation and markers etc.
Multitrack Editor window, showing 3 tracks
The Multitrack Editor works just like a track editor. It features all common track editor buttons except Export.
The Multitrack Editor's Edit Control's features depend on the types of the tracks being edited. The control
can be an Audio Edit Control, a MIDI Edit Control or one that contains just a Volume fader and Fade,
Reverse and Transpose options.
The Multitrack Editor can't be used while the transport is running.
10.15 Chords and Lyrics
Chords and Lyrics can be entered in the Chord Editor and Lyric Editor respectively, which are available from
the Editing Options menu. These Chords and Lyrics can be displayed in almost any editor, which makes it
much easier to see "where you are". They can be made visible using small buttons labeled C and L which
appear on the left hand side of the editors. The Chords appear at the top of the editor, the Lyrics appear at
the bottom. The lyrics and/or chords can be displayed in the Lyrics Prompter too.
Entering Chords is pretty easy, since you probably have them on paper or in your head anyway. Entering
Lyrics is a bit more work because it's not so easy to decide where the bars and beats are. It's recommended
to type the lyrics first, and then add the bar separators (and optionally the beat separators).
Bars are separated by '|' characters. You can type '\' instead for convenience.
Inside a bar, beats are separated by '-' characters. The chords editor understands multiple chords without '-'
separators if the number of beats in the bar can be divided by the number of chords. You can, for example,
use '|C F|' instead of '|C - C - F - F|'.
Here are examples of chords and lyrics:
||
empty bar for count in
||
Intro:
| C | Am | F | Gsus4 G |
| C | Am - Am - Am - Am/G | Bb | G7 |
Chords example
| The sky | is blue | and - I | love -- you |
| It's true | it's true | it's true | it's true|
Lyrics example
Note that any text which is not in a bar is ignored, and thus can be used to add comments.
Spaces can be used anywhere you like. However, spaces aren't allowed in chord names (ie. you must type
'Gsus4' instead of 'G sus 4').
Since MultitrackStudio stores the tempo in MIDI files, there must be at least one MIDI track in a Song in
order to be able to align the chords and lyrics with the tracks. See Extracting tempo from track if your song is
audio only.
The lyrics editors Copy button copies the lyrics to the clipboard without any bar and beat separators. You
can paste the lyrics in a text editor and print them.
The chords editor's b and # buttons can be used to transpose the selected chords. Transposed chords
always use sharps, never flats (D# instead of Eb etc.). Any bass notes (separated from the chord by a slash,
eg. C/B) will be transposed as well.
Creating MIDI Tracks from Chords
Using the Add Track menu's Chord Track option you can create MIDI tracks from the chords. Chord tracks
can be used to make sure the chords are OK, or to quickly create backing tracks for practicing a guitar solo
etc. Bass, Piano, Organ, Strings, Guitar, Banjo and Drums tracks can be created.
Chord tracks are updated automatically if you edit the chords or change the time signature etc. You can
rename a track to keep it from being updated (remove the '(Chord)' part).
The following chords can be used: C, Cm, C6, Cm6, C7, Cm7, Cmaj7, Cmmaj7, Cadd9, Cmadd9, C9, Cm9,
C11, Cm11, C13, Cm13, Csus2, Csus4 (or Csus), Cdim, Caug, Cdim7, Cm7b5. Any key can be used (Bbm,
D7, C#maj7 etc.). Unrecognized chords will be underlined in red.
A chord track's Properties window (click the file name box) offers some options to control the generated
parts. The Pattern box defines the rhythm pattern. Each beat can be in one of these states:
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Play: new notes are played.
Play Accent: new notes are played, a bit louder.
Sustain: notes played in an earlier beat keep sounding.
None of the above: the beat is silent.
A drum track's Pattern box works differently: there are three instruments and you can hit them or not.
Speed controls the resolution of the Pattern box. x1, x2 and x4 equal 1/4, 1/8 and 1/16 notes respectively, x3
equals triplets.
Style offers options like 'Chords', 'Arpeggio' and 'Blues / Rock' depending on the instrument.
Tip: To hear the results of any tweaks immediately you can let the transport cycle a couple of bars.
Chord track properties window (Bass)
Drums track pattern box
Lyrics Prompter
If any chords or lyrics are available a Lyr button appears near the bottom right corner of the main window.
Clicking this button shows the lyrics prompter or hides it again. The lyrics prompter scrolls automatically if the
transport is running, so it can be used to read the lyrics/chords while recording. Clicking a bar will move the
transport position to this bar. Doubleclicking a bar will pop up the chords or lyrics editor and select that bar.
The font size depends on the size of the lyrics prompter panel: if you make the panel taller the font will get
taller as well.
Lyrics Prompter
If both chords and lyrics are available subtle C and L buttons appear on the left (see picture). Either or both
can be displayed.
11 Devices
The audio and MIDI devices to be used by MultitrackStudio can selected using the Studio menu's Devices
window. The current device capabilities are listed, and devices can be selected on clicking the Select
Devices button.
The Audio Output Control (available from the Studio menu) can be used to set the properties (channel
selection, levels etc.) of the audio output device. The controls depend on the audio driver type and devices
used.
The MIDI Out Device Options window (available from the Devices window) controls the behavior of the MIDI
Out Ports.
MultitrackStudio Pro supports up to 140 audio channels, up to four MIDI In devices and up to four MIDI Out
devices.
Lower editions support up to two audio channels, one MIDI In device and up to two MIDI Out devices.
Choosing an audio driver type
On Windows there are three audio driver types to choose from:
ASIO is the preferred driver type. It can only be used if the sound device comes with an ASIO driver. Latency
can be very low.
Windows can be used if there's no ASIO driver for your sound device. Latency can be low. This driver type
isn't available on Windows XP. Windows drivers may actually perform just as good as ASIO, so be sure to try
them if you experience problems using ASIO.
Windows XP should work with any sound device, but latency is very high and there's no Soft Monitoring.
Multichannel recording isn't possible using this driver type.
On Mac there's just one audio driver type (Core Audio). You can click Select Devices to select audio/MIDI
devices.
11.1 ASIO Drivers
Note: this driver type is available for Windows only.
ASIO drivers allow for low latencies and avoid track synchronization issues. In addition they allow for
multichannel recording (Pro edition only). If a sound device comes with an ASIO driver then it's usually best
to use it.
Select Devices window using ASIO driver (Pro edition, lower editions have only one MIDI In and two MIDI Out devices)
In the Audio Device section you can select the audio device that will be used.
On clicking the Control Panel button the driver's control panel will appear. This panel usually lets you set the
buffer size. Buffers can be up to 4096 samples (this corresponds to 93 ms at 44.1/88.2 kHz and 85 ms at
48/96 kHz). A buffer size of 256 (at 44.1 kHz) can be considered a good compromise between reliability and
low latency.
If the buffers are too small glitches will occur. This may not be a problem when playing back audio or
recording MIDI, as the driver will usually stay in sync so any glitches will not appear in the final master. It's
strongly recommended to use large enough buffers when recording audio, as glitches in the recorded track
do appear in the master.
In the MIDI In Devices section you can select the device that is used for MIDI recording.
In the MIDI Out Devices section you can select the device that is used for MIDI playback. The 'Default'
option uses the default Windows MIDI output device.
Audio Output Control
The Audio Output Control (available from the Studio menu) controls
which outputs will be used. The listed outputs will be used from top to
bottom. They can be reordered by dragging and dropping them.
Audio Output Control using ASIO driver
11.2 Windows Drivers
Note: this driver type is available for Windows only.
Windows drivers allow for low latency. Multichannel recording and playback is supported as well, provided
the sound device driver supports this (Pro edition only). Windows XP doesn't support this driver type.
Select Devices window using Windows drivers (Pro edition, lower editions have only one MIDI In and two MIDI Out
devices)
In the Audio In Device section you can select the audio device that will be used for recording.
In the Audio Out Device section you can select the audio device that will be used for playback.
It's a good idea to use Audio In and Out devices that are on the same sound device. If they're not their
samplerates probably aren't equal. This can be quite a problem, as recorded tracks will slowly go out-of-sync
during playback.
Audio devices are opened in exclusive mode in order to ensure low latency and good synchronization. This
means other programs can't use these audio devices while MultitrackStudio runs. If, for example, you want to
record the audio output of another program you'll have to temporarily select 'None' in the Audio Out Device
section so the other program can playback.
The Latency box determines the time it takes before you hear the sound when playing MIDI soft instruments
live or when using Soft Monitoring ('live effects'). You'll hear glitches if this settings is too low.
MultitrackStudio has been designed to not let these glitches end up in the actual recording: If, for example,
you record the Guitar Amp effect live using a low latency and you hear glitches while recording, the glitches
won't be in the track and it will sound fine when you play it back.
The Try "pull mode" button turns on "pull mode" (AKA "event mode"), which works better when CPU usage
is high. You'd want to have this enabled, but unfortunately some drivers fail to implement this correctly. It
also doesn't work on Windows Vista without SP1. Pull mode won't be used if MultitrackStudio can detect it
doesn't work, even if it's enabled.
Your sound device may not support latencies as low as the one you've selected. The actual latency appears
in the Studio menu's Devices window.
In the MIDI In Devices section you can select the device that is used for MIDI recording.
In the MIDI Out Devices section you can select the device that is used for MIDI playback. The 'Default'
option uses the default Windows MIDI output device.
Audio Output Control
The Audio Output Control (available from the Studio menu) controls
which outputs will be used. The listed outputs will be used from top
to bottom. They can be reordered by dragging and dropping them.
The Level fader, which is only available if the sound device
supports this, controls the playback level.
The Control Panel button pops up the audio page of the Windows
Control Panel, where you can adjust detailed playback levels etc. if
the sound device supports this.
Audio Output Control using Windows driver
Under the hood
Windows Vista introduced a new low-latency driver model called "Core Audio" or WASAPI. That's what
MultitrackStudio uses. Sometimes the term WaveRT is used as well, although this actually refers to a
technology used by drivers internally. Windows Vista also introduced MMCSS (Multimedia Class Scheduler
Service), which helps prevent audio glitches under high CPU load.
11.3 Windows XP Drivers
Note: this driver type is available for Windows only.
This options uses classic Windows audio driver types. Latency is very high and there's no Soft Monitoring.
Multichannel recording isn't possible using this driver type.
Select Devices window using Windows XP driver (Pro edition, lower editions have only one MIDI In and two MIDI Out
devices)
In the Audio In Device section you can select the device that is used for audio recording.
In the Audio Out sections you can select the devices that will be used for audio playback.
In the Audio Out Device (High Latency) section you can select the device that will be used when there is
no recording MIDI soft instrument. The devices listed are MME devices (which are very reliable, even when
CPU usage is high).
In the Audio Out Device (Low Latency) section you can select the device that will be used when there are
one or more recording soft instruments. The devices listed are DirectSound devices (which can have a
lower, but still significant, latency).
In general you will use MME and DirectSound devices that use the same sound device. MultitrackStudio will
automatically use the appropriate device.
The 24 bit buttons can be used to enable 24 bit recording/playback. It's recommended to enable this only if
the sound device actually supports it, if it doesn't the sound device's driver may perform bad or even crash
your computer in some cases.
In the MIDI In Devices section you can select the device that is used for MIDI recording.
In the MIDI Out Devices section you can select the device that is used for MIDI playback. The 'Default'
option uses the default Windows MIDI output device.
It's a good idea to use Audio In and Out devices that are on the same sound device. If they're not their
samplerates probably aren't equal. This can be quite a problem, as recorded tracks will slowly go out-of-sync
during playback.
If necessary you can use the Sample Rate Converter to correct the sample rate of every recorded track. To
determine the required samplerate you should record a playing track. Use the track's editor to determine the
timing difference between those two tracks (at the end of the track). The new samplerate is equal to original
samplerate multiplied by the playing time of the original track and divided by that of the recorded track.
SoundBlaster Live! issues
Creative Labs SoundBlaster Live! sound devices (and its cheaper brothers like 128, 512, 1024, Ensoniq
AudioPCI) use a slightly higher samplerate for recording than for playback at a samplerate of 44.1 kHz.
MultitrackStudio features a unique compensation for this effect. This compensation can be turned on by
checking the EMU10k1 44.1 kHz Sync Correction box.
When using a samplerate of 48 kHz this problem does not occur, and the 'EMU10k1 44.1 kHz Sync
Correction' setting has no effect.
11.4 Mac audio/MIDI devices
Note: this feature is available for Mac only.
Select Devices window (Pro edition, lower editions have only one MIDI In and two MIDI Out devices)
In the Audio In Device section you can select the audio device that will be used for recording.
In the Audio Out Device section you can select the audio device that will be used for playback.
It's recommended to use Audio In and Out devices which are part of the same sound device. If they're not
their samplerates probably aren't equal. This can be quite a problem, as recorded tracks will slowly go out-ofsync during playback. To solve this problem you can create an 'aggregate device' using the Audio MIDI
Setup application, and use this device in MultitrackStudio. OS X will then take care of syncing the two
devices.
The Latency box determines the time it takes before you hear the sound when playing MIDI software
instruments live or when using Soft Monitoring ('live effects'). You'll hear glitches if this setting is too low.
Your sound device may not support latencies as low as the one you've selected. The actual latency appears
in the Studio menu's Devices window.
In the MIDI In Devices section you can select the device that is used for MIDI recording.
In the MIDI Out Devices section you can select the device that is used for MIDI playback.
Audio Output Control
The Audio Output Control (available from the Studio menu) controls
which outputs will be used. The listed outputs will be used from top
to bottom. They can be reordered by dragging and dropping them.
The Level fader, which is only available if the sound device supports
this, controls the playback level.
The Control Panel button pops up the Sound page of the System
Preferences, where you can adjust detailed playback levels etc. if
the sound device supports this.
Audio Output Control
11.5 MIDI Out Device Options
The MIDI Out Device Options window (available from the Studio menu's Devices window) determines the
behavior of the MIDI Out devices, and consequently the External MIDI Instruments.
MIDI Out Device Options window (this example is from the Pro edition)
Default Patch Map: Here you can select a patch map that matches the synthesizer connected to the MIDI
Device. This patch map contains the names of patches and drum note names that are used by the External
MIDI Instrument and the drum editor respectively.
The Send sync code section specifies the type of sync messages sent over the MIDI Out Device. This can
be used to synchronize hardware or software sequencers with MultitrackStudio. The available options are
None, MIDI Clock, MTC 24 frames/sec, MTC 25 frames/sec and MTC 30 frames/sec.
The Recording connections section defines the way MIDI In and Out devices will be connected when
recording MIDI. By default, events received by the MIDI In device will be send to the MIDI Out device that's
being used by the recording track. This is fine if you're using an external 19 inch synthesizer module or an
onboard soundcard synthesizer. However, it can cause problems if you're using a MIDI keyboard with built-in
sounds that is connected to both the computer MIDI In and Out device (all notes may be triggered twice).
This can easily be solved by unchecking the corresponding button.
11.6 Compensating for driver issues
Note: this feature is available for Windows only
Note: this needs to be done in extremely rare situations only. Make sure you're using the latest drivers for
your sound device first.
Aligning audio devices
Under normal circumstances all audio and MIDI devices will be aligned by MultitrackStudio, so that newly
recorded tracks are perfectly aligned with existing ones. However, some sound device drivers fail to report
the exact playback or recording position, and as a result MultitrackStudio can't align the devices accurately.
Offsets to the reported positions can be specified in text files to compensate for such driver defects.
Aligning the audio input and output devices step-by-step
This section describes how to compensate the audio input device so that new tracks are aligned with existing
ones.
Step 1
Start MultitrackStudio and load the 'C:\Program Files\MtStudio\Impulse.gjm' in a track. This file contains a
single impulse at approx. 50 milliseconds. Set up another track that will record the first track.
Step 2
Connect the audio input device to the audio output device using an audio cable. If your sound device can do
this routing internally you can use that feature instead of the cable.
Step 3
Click the Studio menu's Devices option and click the Select Devices button. Now close the window that
appears using the OK button, thus forcing the program to create sections in a file that you will be editing in
the next step. Note that 'default' devices (Default, MIDI Mapper or Primary Sound Driver) can't be
compensated, so any devices you want to compensate must be selected explicitly.
Step 4
Record the first track to the second track for about one second. Open the track editors and locate the
impulses. Move the mouse over the impulses and read the positions in the bottom right corner of the
window. The difference between the two positions is error that needs compensation.
Step 5
The settings for ASIO, Windows and Windows XP drivers are stored in the 'AsioSnd Settings.txt',
'VistaSound Settings.txt' and 'WinSound Settings.txt' files respectively. MIDI device settings are stored in the
"MIDI Settings.txt' file. These files are located in the
'C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming\MtStudio' ('C:\Documents and Settings\Username\Application
Data\MtStudio' on XP), and can be edited using Windows Notepad to compensate for the driver's error. The
settings files consist of sections, indicated by [brackets], which can contain values.
Here's a small example of a settings file:
[Settings]
[Brand X Wave Device]
audioin_offset_millisecs=15
The [Settings] section shouldn't be modified. The [Brand X Wave Device] section, where 'Brand X Wave
Device' is the name of the audio input device as specified in the Select Devices window. The error value
found in step 4 has been filled in here (15 milliseconds in this case).
Step 6
Close MultitrackStudio and start it again (this is necessary to force the program to read the settings file
again). Now you can repeat steps 1..4 and verify the results.
Advanced options
It is also possible to specify offsets in samples instead of milliseconds, this can be useful if you want the
compensation to work for multiple samplerates. The offset can also be specified in ASIO buffers (ASIO
drivers only). MIDI devices can also be compensated.
This is the full list of possible compensation options:
Audio input devices support these values:
audioin_offset_millisecs=
audioin_offset_samples=
audioin_offset_buffers=
(ASIO drivers only)
Windows XP high latency audio output devices and ASIO output devices support these values:
audioout_offset_millisecs=
audioout_offset_samples=
audioout_offset_buffers=
(ASIO drivers only)
Windows XP high latency audio output devices support these values:
audiooutlowlat_offset_millisecs=
audiooutlowlat_offset_samples=
MIDI input devices support these values:
midiin_offset_millisecs=
midiin_offset_samples=
MIDI output devices support these values:
midiout_offset_millisecs=
midiout_offset_samples=
The _samples values must be integer values, the _millisecs and _buffers values can be fractional.
ASIO Delay
A small delay can be introduced to ASIO buffer processing. This can sometimes be used to work around
certain sound device/mainboard/driver incompatibilities if these symptoms occur:
1. Recording a MIDI track using a soft instrument sounds fine while recording.
2. But it sounds gargled or extremely glitchy when played back.
To add an ASIO delay open the 'C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming\MtStudio\AsioSnd Settings.txt' file
('C:\Documents and Settings\Username\Application Data\MtStudio\AsioSnd Settings.txt' on XP) in NotePad
and add a 'AsioDelay=' line in the [Settings] section like this:
[Settings]
AsioDelay=20000
The value has to be determined experimentally (the higher the value the longer the delay. MultitrackStudio
should be restarted after editing the file.
ASIO MMCSS
Windows Vista features MMCSS (Multimedia Class Scheduler Service), which can help prevent glitches
under high CPU load. While it's an ASIO driver's job to enable this some don't. You can add a 'MMCSS=1'
line to the 'AsioSnd Settings.txt' file (see previous section) file to make MultitrackStudio turn on MMCSS.
This line should appear in the [Settings] section:
[Settings]
MMCSS=1
MultitrackStudio should be restarted after editing the file.
Note that not every ASIO driver will necessarily be happy with this. If it performs worse you should remove
the line again.
12 Remote Control
A remote control is a hardware device which can be used to control MultitrackStudio's transport, mixer and
effects. Traditional 'control surfaces' use MIDI to communicate with the computer. MultitrackStudio can also
be controlled with MultitrackStudio Remote app (for iPad), or a web browser (on a phone or tablet).
MIDI Remotes
The Studio menu's Remote Control option pops up the Remote Control window. Click the Device button to
select the MIDI In device to be used for the remote. The MIDI Out device should be specified as well if the
remote has LEDs or motorized faders.
The MIDI In device used by the remote can be selected as a regular MIDI In device (for recording a MIDI
keyboard) as well. In this case the remote functions will have the highest priority, ie. only MIDI messages
which aren't mapped to a remote control action will be recorded by MIDI tracks. This mechanism makes it
possible to map some keys of a MIDI keyboard to remote control actions. You can, for instance, use a key to
invoke the "Alternate Take" action.
The Remote Control window allows for assigning remote control knobs to specific functions using the Learn
function. Ready to use presets for the TranzPort and AlphaTrack (Frontier Design Group), the BCF2000
(Behringer) and the UC33 (Evolution) are provided. There are also generic Mackie Control and HUI presets.
The Remote Control Bar, which can be made visible using the Show Remote Control Bar button, shows the
names of the mixer sections that are mapped to the remote control channels.
Note: the Device and Remote Control Bar are only visible if a preset is opened which corresponds to a
device which uses MIDI. For advanced users: actually it's the 'Controller Type' box that matters rather than
the preset.
12.1 Remote Control Settings
The Remote Control window defines the functionality of
the remote control device being used. The Preset button
can be used to load predefined presets, or to create new
presets. The Info button shows information on the current
settings if available. Use the Device button to select the
MIDI devices corresponding to the remote control device.
The Clear button clears the highlighted Action. The None
preset can be used to clear all actions. If the Learn button
is engaged any incoming midi messages will be mapped
to the highlighted Action. Custom mappings can be
created easily this way.
Remotes which are not plain MIDI are translated to plain
MIDI. Several Controller Types can be selected:
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MIDI Controller: plain MIDI messages
HUI
Mackie Control
TranzPort
AlphaTrack
The Mixer Sections settings will typically equal the
Remote Control window (Details expanded)
number of channel strips the remote provides. The
highest possible value is 64. The Effect Sends settings determines the number of Effect Send knobs that
can be controlled using the remote.
There can be multiple Views. This is typically used to control multiple Actions using a single rotary knob
(View 1 = Pan, View 2 = Effect Send 1 etc.). The All Views button makes the highlighted Action appear in all
views. You'll probably want volume faders, transport buttons etc. to be in all views.
The Effect Knobs settings determines the number of rotary knobs available for controlling effect knobs. An
effect can only be controlled when its user interface is visible on the screen. The knobs used to control
effects can also be used to control mixer sections (pan knobs etc.), MultitrackStudio takes care of this
automatically (there's no need to use views for this).
Actions
The following actions can be controlled by the remote. Actions marked (cc) should be controlled by a
continuous controller (rotating knob or fader), all other actions are supposed to be controlled by a button.
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What Is: Keep this button down while using another button or knob. A description of the associated
Action will be shown in the bottom left corner of the screen.
The following actions control the Transport:
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Start
Start Cycling: start cycling, only works if valid cycle start/end points have been set.
Start Playback: start transport only if no track Rec buttons are engaged (ie. the Play button has a
green triangle)
Start Recording: start transport only if any track Rec buttons are engaged (ie. the Play button has a red
triangle)
Stop
Start/Stop: equivalent to hitting the space bar.
Rewind
Fast Forward
Home
To End
To Last Start Position
To Next Start Position
To Nearest Bar
Transport Wheel (cc)
Transport Shuttle (cc)
To Previous Marker
To Next Marker
To Marker (cc)
Add Marker
Delete Marker
VariSpeed (cc) (Pro edition only)
VariSpeed Mode (cc) (Pro edition only)
Cycle: toggle cycle on/off. Start will do Start Cycling instead if Cycle is on.
Set Cycle Start: set start of cycle region (uses the current transport position).
Set Cycle End: set end of cycle region (uses the current transport position).
Counter: turn on/off remote's counter display.
Counter Format: toggle bars/seconds.
Zoom In
Zoom Out
Zoom In/Out (cc)
These actions allow for opening songs:
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To Next Song: to next song of songlist.
To Song (cc): to song of songlist (zero = first song).
If there's no songlist it looks for a file named 'setlist.txt' located in the 'root folder for new songs' as
defined in the Preferences window. This file should map controller values to songs like this:
0=C:\My Songs\Yellow Sun\Yellow Sun.hdr
1=C:\My Songs\Blue Sky\Blue Sky.hdr
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To Song High (cc): adds another 7 bits to the 'To Song' action, so more than 128 songs can be used.
'To Song High' must be sent before 'To Song'. The song number is calculated as like this: song = 128 x
'To Song High' + 'To Song'.
These actions control a couple of recording related things:
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New Audio Track: select a template from list of audio track templates
New MIDI Track: select a template from list of MIDI track templates
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New Group
New Effect Return
Alternate Take: click the Recording option's Alternate Take item.
Re-Arm: engage the Rec buttons of the last recorded tracks.
Soft Monitoring: click the Soft Monitoring button.
Punch: click the Punch button.
These actions control mixer sections:
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Section Play: toggle a track's Play button.
Section Rec: toggle a track's Rec button.
Section PlayRec: toggle between playback and record mode.
Section Practice Mode: switch track to practice mode.
Section Fader (cc)
Section Mute
Section Solo
Section Half Solo: toggle between half solo and no solo.
Section Pan (cc)
Section Effect Send (cc)
Section Slot: open an Effect Slot (show the effect's user interface).
Section Select Slot (cc): pop up effect selector window
Section Output Selector (cc)
Section Editor: open/close a track's editor.
Section Set Punch In: make start of the editor's selected part equal to the Transport position.
Section Set Punch Out: make end of the editor's selected part equal to the Transport position.
Section Set Punch In/Out: select the editor's selected part while the Transport is running. This should
be done before recording.
Section Goto Punch In: make Transport position equal to the start of the editor's selected part.
Section Goto Punch Out: make Transport position equal to the end of the editor's selected part.
Section Undo Punch: click track editor's Undo button
Section Redo Punch: click track editor's Redo button
Section Clone: add track with new file and similar settings.
Section Remove
Section Map: pop up selector to map a mixer section to remote control channel.
Master Fader: controls the Master section's volume fader.
Clear Solo: turn off any active Solo buttons.
Level Meters: turn on/off the remote's level meters
Faders Silent: suspend/resume motor fader control. Can be used to keep the (automated) faders from
making noise while recording in the same room.
Slot Select Button: press this button before pressing the Section Slot button. Now a Section Select Slot
action will be sent instead of a Section Slot action.
Mouse Control (cc): controls the knob the mouse points to.
Send Snapshot: send all values to the remote (probably never needed).
These actions control views and banks:
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View Button
View Down
View Up
View Up/Down (cc)
Bank Down: move (typically) 8 sections down
Bank Up: move (typically) 8 sections up
To First Bank
To Last Bank
Section Down
Section Up
To Section (cc)
The following actions are used to control Effects and Instruments. These actions can share knobs with noneffect actions (eg. Effect Knob and Section Pan can be on the same knob, Effect Bank Up and View Up can
be on the same button etc.).
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Effect Knob (cc): control an effect's knob.
Effect Control Map: pop up selector to map an effect control to a remote control knob.
Effect Mouse Control (cc): controls the effect knob the mouse points to.
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Effect Bank Down
Effect Bank Up
Effect Bank Up/Down (cc)
Effect To First Bank
Effect To Last Bank
Effect Control Down
Effect Control Up
Effect Close: close the effect window.
Effect Bypass. Also used for instrument channel, it can be (cc) in this case.
The following actions are used to select effects, sampler patches etc. These actions can share knobs with
actions which are not in this group (eg. Selector Accept can be on the same button as Effect Close).
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Selector Down
Selector Up
Selector Up/Down (cc)
Category Selector Down
Category Selector Up
Category Selector Up/Down (cc)
Selector Accept: also used to invoke message dialog 'OK' or 'Yes' buttons.
Selector Cancel: also used to invoke message dialog 'Cancel' or 'No' buttons.
12.2 Remote Control Bar
Cheaper remotes typically don't feature a display, therefore it's difficult to see what a knob's function is.
MultitrackStudio features a Remote Control Bar at the bottom of the screen. It can be made visible using the
Studio menu's Preferences window.
Remote Control Bar, strip 6 is being remapped
The Remote Control Bar has eight sections that show the names of the mixer sections that are controlled by
the corresponding remote control channel strips. The vertical line on the right can be moved to align the bar
with the remote. The name of the current View is shown on the righthand side. This typically indicates the
function of the remote's rotary knobs (Pan, Effect Send 1 etc.).
If an effect window is currently visible the names of the effect knobs will be shown, provided the remote is set
up to control effects.
Mapping Mixer Sections
Songs can have more mixer sections than the available number of remote control channel strips.
Traditionally remotes have bank up/down and/or section up/down buttons so any number of mixer sections
can be accessed. These buttons can be used with MultitrackStudio.
In addition MultitrackStudio lets you freely map mixer sections to remote control channel strips in any order.
There are several ways to do this:
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Click the Remote Control Bar and use the selector window that pops up.
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Drag items within the Remote Control Bar.
Drag a mixer section to the Remote Control Bar.
Drag en item from the Remote Control Bar to the Garbage Bin to unmap.
Use remote control knobs. A very convenient setup can be achieved with rotary knobs which also have
a push function:
¡ Map the rotary function to Selector Up/Down actions.
¡ Map the push function to Section Map and Selector Accept actions.
On pressing the knob a selector window appears which can be controlled using the knob. Note that the
knob can still be used to control mixer section and/or effect controls as well.
Your custom mapping will be lost when you press the remote's bank up/down or section up/down buttons.
Mapping Effect Control
Controls of the currently visible effect window can be mapped to Effect Knob actions. Banks can be used if
the number of controls exceeds the number of knobs. Controls can be mapped dynamically just like mixer
sections, the only difference is that you can't drag an effect control to the Remote Control Bar.
All instances of a particular type of effect share the same mapping, eg. if you change the mapping of an EQ
all other EQs will be affected as well.
12.3 MultitrackStudio Remote
The MultitrackStudio Remote app for iPad turns an iPad into a powerful remote control for MultitrackStudio.
MultitrackStudio Remote, recording a track.
Connecting to MultitrackStudio
First of all the MultitrackStudio Remote app needs to be installed. It's available from the App Store.
Connecting to MultitrackStudio goes like this:
1. In MultitrackStudio, go to the Studio menu and choose Remote Control. Select the MultitrackStudio
Remote preset.
2. On iPad start the MultitrackStudio Remote app and tap the Connect button. Now enter the code that
appears in the Remote Control Settings window and tap OK.
3. Close the Remote Control Settings window.
Now the mixer sections will appear on the left, and you can control MultitrackStudio using iPad.
The iPad must communicate via WIFI (3G etc. is not supported). Furthermore the iPad and your computer
must both be connected to your home network.
Features
Using the MultitrackStudio Remote you can control many recording-related features:
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Control the transport, including VariSpeed, markers and cycling.
Add and control tracks, groups, effect returns (up to 3) and the master section.
Add and control effects and MIDI instruments.
Toggle the Monitor / Punch / Sound On Sound buttons.
Control the click track and the MIDI Keyboard Splitter.
All mixer sections appear as tabs on the left. A signal indicator appears on the left hand side of the tab, it can
be green, yellow or red, corresponding to MultitrackStudio level meter colors. A tab's right hand side show a
red bar if the track's Rec button is engaged. The lower half of the screen contains the current section's
controls.
The transport controls appear in the upper half. The two buttons below the large start/stop button step
through the history of recent transport start positions. The horizontal Shuttle Bar moves the transport slowly
near the center and fast near the sides. While shuttling you'll hear the current track, and the track's
audio/MIDI data appears below the transport counter.
Shuttle Bar in action.
Some lesser-used features aren't easily discoverable:
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The position counter can be tapped to switch it from seconds to bars or vice versa.
Pressing the position counter for a second moves to the start of the closest bar.
Tapping a rotary knob centers it, but only if this makes sense (Pan, VariSpeed etc.) .
In the 'Add Track' window you can tap the 'Add Track' title to change it to 'Add Group / Effect Return'.
Moving a finger horizontally over the current tab (on the left) reveals a Remove button.
The Set In and Set Out buttons can be pressed for a second to move the transport to the
corresponding position.
Pressing an effect slot for a second pops up the effect selector rather than the effect itself.
Pressing the Solo button for a second enters 'half solo' mode.
Pressing the Play button for a second switches the track to practice mode.
Pressing the start/stop button for a second starts cycling.
12.4 Phone/tablet Web Browser
The Remote Control Settings window features Web Browser (Phone) and Web Browser (Tablet) presets.
Once a preset is loaded MultitrackStudio's network address is shown, you can type this address in your
phone or tablet's web browser. The phone/tablet must communicate via WIFI (3G etc. is not supported).
Furthermore the phone/tablet and your computer must both be connected to your home network.
Note: The phone/tablet web page does not get updated automatically when you make changes using the
computer mouse or keyboard. Please refresh the browser manually each time you've used the computer
mouse or keyboard.
iPhone and iPad controlling MultitrackStudio
The phone preset allows for controlling the transport remotely. The upper half of the screen features
transport Start/Stop and Home buttons. You can walk through the history of recent transport start positions
using the Back and Fwrd buttons. Tapping the position indicator takes you to a new page listing all markers.
The position indicator doesn't show the current position while the transport is running, it will just show
"Playing' or "Recording".
The lower half of the screen show the Play/Rec and Solo buttons of the current track. Tapping the track
name box takes you to a page listing all tracks.
The tablet preset allows for controlling track volume and pan. The bottom row of buttons controls the master
section volume fader. The Aux 1 and Aux 2 buttons can be mapped to an action of your choice using the
Remote Control Settings window.
13 Audio and MIDI Files
13.1 Audio Files
The following audio file formats are supported:
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.WAV files: 16 bit mono or stereo (Pro edition also supports 24 bit, 32 bit and 32 bit floating point
files).
.GJM files: 16 bit mono using lossless compression (Pro edition also supports 24 bit).
.GJS files: 16 bit stereo using lossless compression (Pro edition also supports 24 bit).
.AIF files: 16 bit mono or stereo (Pro edition also supports 24 bit, 32 bit and 32 bit floating point files).
.MP3 files: 16 bit mono or stereo files using lossy compression.
.SAM files: 16 bit mono headerless raw data files.
.AEM files: contain references to audio files to play. .AEM files are application-generated (see
Understanding Audio Editing).
.LST files: pre MultitrackStudio 5 equivalent of .aem files. These files can still be read.
The Mac version can also open existing .aac, .ac3, .aifc, .caf, .mp4, .m4a, .snd, .au and .sd2 files. Modifying
these files is not possible.
WAV files
WAV files can be used with almost any program that supports audio. You need a WAV file to create an audio
CD.
GJM/GJS files
GJM/GJS files use a compression algorithm that works best if the audio signal doesn't contain loud treble
parts. This works well for multitrack recording since tracks typically have many silent or soft parts so the file
size can easily be reduced to about 70% of its original size.
Note that sound quality isn't impaired in any way by the compressing action: if you save a .WAV file in .GJM
format and then save that file in .WAV format again you get exactly the same file.
AIF files
AIF files are similar to WAV files. They're widely supported on Mac computers, but rare on Windows.
MP3 files
MP3 files use a lossy compression algorithm that degrades sound quality. The resulting file size is 3..9% of
the original size. This makes MP3 the format of choice if you want to publish your songs on the internet, or if
you want to send them via email.
Every time a new MP3 file is created the audio quality can be chosen (Medium, High or Very High). High and
Very High quality files use the full samplerate (44.1 or 48 kHz), Medium quality files will use half the
samplerate (22.05 or 24 kHz).
An MP3 encoder is required in order to create MP3 files. You can search the web for such a file.
Windows: The 32-bit version expects a 'lame_enc.dll' file in the C:\Program Files\MtStudio folder
(C:\Program Files (x86)\MtStudio on 64 bit Windows). The 64-bit version expects a 'lame_enc64.dll' file in
the C:\Program Files\MtStudio folder. If there's no dll file any ACM codecs which are on your system will be
used. The ACM codec that comes with Windows usually supports creating medium quality files only.
Mac: A 'libmp3lame.dylib' file is expected in the user's Library/Application Support/MultitrackStudio folder.
You can achieve this by dropping the libmp3lame.dylib file on the main window.
Note that MP3 is NOT the format of choice for multitrack recording: not only does sound quality suffer, the
MP3 encoding/decoding process consumes a lot of processing power as well.
13.2 MIDI Files
The following MIDI file formats are supported:
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.MID files: standard MIDI files.
.MPT files: MIDI Pattern Track files (see MIDI Pattern Editing).
.MID file can be saved as .MPT files and vice versa.
Tip: .kar (karaoke) files can be imported after renaming them to .mid
A MIDI file can contain more than one stream ('track' in MIDI terms, but renamed to avoid confusion).
MultitrackStudio supports using multiple streams, although we don't recommend it.
MultitrackStudio does not support patch changes in a stream. If a program change or bank change is
encountered in a file that is being opened a new stream will be created. Furthermore MultitrackStudio
streams can only send messages to one MIDI channel (it uses the channel the program change is sent to).
So if a stream in your file sends messages to more than one MIDI channel (which is bad practice anyway)
the file won't load as intended.
14 Touch and Pen
Note: touchscreen support is available for Windows only
MultitrackStudio can be controlled using a touchscreen or a pen (stylus).
There's a special 'Pen with touch scrolling' mode to make the most out of devices like the Microsoft Surface.
14.1 Touch
Note: touchscreen support is available for Windows only
MultitrackStudio features a touchscreen mode which makes the program easy to use with tablets, convertible
notebooks and touchscreen monitors. You can interact with the knobs you see on the screen directly without
having to find your mouse and move it to the right location first.
MultitrackStudio on 10 inch Windows 8 tablet with Ultra Dark theme
Quickstart: 3 tips
1: Switch to touchscreen mode
MultitrackStudio will propose touchscreen mode if a touchscreen is detected. If it
doesn't you can go to the Studio menu's Preferences window and select
Touchscreen in the Input Device box. A 'Test Touchscreen...' button appears
which lets you do a quick test. MultitrackStudio learns from this test whether it can
Input Device selector
distinguish between mouse movements and touch movements. Using the mouse
in touchscreen mode will be a bit awkward if it can't, because mouse movements will be treated as touch.
In touchscreen mode some controls are bigger to make them easier to use. The transport buttons are an
example of this. Controls that don't get bigger still respond to a larger area to make them easier to use with
touch.
2: Check Windows DPI setting
Touch screens are hard to use if controls are too small. Traditionally Windows runs at 96 DPI (DPI = dots per
inch). Modern notebook screens can have 150 DPI or more, which makes everything significantly smaller
unless you adjust the Windows DPI value accordingly. A MultitrackStudio track measures 9.5 mm in height if
the Windows DPI value matches the screen's. It is highly recommended to make sure tracks aren't any
smaller than this. You can increase the DPI value even more if you still can't use the touchscreen
comfortably. If you'd rather not change the Windows DPI setting you can go to the Studio menu's
Preferences window and use the Size setting to scale MultitrackStudio independently from the Windows DPI
setting.
3: Use full screen mode
It's highly recommended to use full screen mode. The knobs at the top and the bottom bar are much easier
to operate this way, and you avoid the risk of touching the 'X' button or Windows task bar inadvertently.
There's a button in the bottom-right corner of the main window to enter/leave full screen mode.
In depth: using user interface elements with touch
Some things work a bit different with touch compared to using a mouse:
Mixer faders
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Put a finger on the fader and move it horizontally. The fader thumb
doesn't move as fast as your finger does, so you can control it accurately.
Tapping the left half moves it down one step, tapping the right half moves
it up one step.
Fader
Rotary knobs
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Put a finger on the knob and either move it horizontally or make a rotating
movement below the knob.
Tapping the left half moves it down one step, tapping the right half moves it up one
step.
Knob
Buttons/boxes with right arrows (like the Input button)
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Put a finger on the button/box itself and move it horizontally. After moving
about half a centimeter a white area becomes visible, representing the menu
which will appear when you take your finger off the screen.
Input button about
to show dropdown menu
Up/down buttons
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Put a finger on the button and move it approx. 2 centimeters up or down to
increase/decrease the value. If you keep the finger on the screen the button will
continue to increase/decrease automatically.
Up/down button
Text boxes
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An onscreen keyboard appears if you tap a text box. Use the
keyboard's Enter key to accept the new value, or close the keyboard to
cancel.
Touch keyboard for position
indicator
Effect/Instrument slots
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The whole slot area can be touched, ie. the little display also works, not just the
button.
Press-and-hold can be used to pop up the effect/instrument selector of a non-empty
Tapping a slot
slot (keep the finger down for about a second).
To move a slot it should be moved horizontally at first, even if you want to move it vertically.
Overview Bar
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Even though the markers appear at the bottom you can (and should) touch them
as if they span the full height.
The Transport Options menu can be used to add markers. You can use it to delete
Tapping a marker
markers as well (tap the marker before opening the menu).
You can pull down a marker to pop up a menu with rename options, among others (see the
"Buttons/boxes with right arrows" paragraph above).
It's not possible to change the transport position while recording, in order to avoid doing that
accidentally.
Position indicator
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You can move your finger horizontally over the transport position
indicator. Moving to the left rewinds fully, moving to the right once takes
you back to where the transport last started.
Rewind / to last start position
Lists with a vertical scrollbar
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Put a finger on the contents and move it up or down, no need to use the scrollbar.
Scrolling a list
Text in Comments window and Chords/Lyrics editors.
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An onscreen touch keyboard appears if you tap the text box.
If there's a vertical scrollbar you can put a finger on the text itself and
move it up or down, there's no need to use the scrollbar.
Text can be selected by moving your finger horizontally. Once it's
clear you're selecting rather than scrolling you can move vertically as
well.
With a multi-touch screen you can use two-finger zoom in/out
gestures to make the text larger/smaller.
Text box: scrolling and selecting
Moving mixer sections
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To move a single section, put a finger on a tracks' file name box (or the
corresponding area on an Effect Return etc.) and move it a couple of
centimeters horizontally before moving vertically. Moving up or down
immediately will scroll all mixer sections.
Move right before moving
vertically to drag section
Track file history
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A message box pops up on tapping a file, and you can choose whether you
want to open it in the current track or in a new one.
A track's file history
Editors
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There's a 'pan mode' to scroll editors horizontally and/or vertically (if applicable). An editor is in pan
mode if all mode buttons (in the bottom left corner) are off. Editors which normally don't have any
mode buttons, like audio track editors, have a single mode button in touchscreen mode.
If an editor is not in pan mode you can scroll horizontally using the main window's bottom bar. With a
multitouch screen you can zoom horizontally as well. Editors which can scroll vertically can be scrolled
using the left hand part (the vertical piano in the pianoroll, the drum instrument names in the drum
editor etc.).
In 'select part' mode you can swipe down over the start or end of the selected part. The editor will
zoom in until you release your finger again. You can use this feature to accurately set start/end points
without having to actually zoom in and out again.
With a multi-touch screen the pianoroll, score and audio editors can be zoomed vertically using two
fingers on the left-hand part. Zooming vertically on the editor itself works with Windows 8 and newer
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only.
A copy of part of the editor appears above the editor while selecting or adding notes so you can see
the part covered by your finger.
There's a semi-transparent "touchthumb" on the editor itself which can be used to move the needle.
The time line bar above the editor can't be used with touch. Doubletapping the touchthumb starts the
transport, tap-and-drag starts cycling.
Add modes (MIDI editors, automation editors etc.) switch back to select mode after adding a note/dot,
so you must press it again in order to add another note/dot. This helps avoiding adding notes/dots
inadvertently. You can change this behavior using "Sticky add/draw modes (touch)" button in the
Preferences window.
You can switch modes by swiping horizontally on the area on the left (above the mode buttons). You
could use the left hand thumb for this if you're using a tablet. Pressing the mode buttons also works of
course.
The SEL ALL button is replaced with a SEL button which pops up a menu with various options to
select a part, play it cycling or stretch it.
Tip: tilting a finger to move a small distance may be more accurate than moving the whole finger.
Audio editor in pan mode.
Scrolling vertically
Horizontal swipe
switches modes
Use bottom bar to move editors horizontally
Drum editor while touched
Pianoroll
See "Editors". Moving/resizing notes works a little different:
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A selected note has a grip on the right-hand side. Here you can move
the right-hand side of the note. If the note is long enough there's a grip
on the left-hand side as well.
A note which isn't selected can only be moved, its duration cannot be
changed.
Hence a very short note which is selected can only be resized, not
moved. Unselect the note first if you want to move it.
Pianoroll showing resize grip
on selected note and
semi-transparent touchthumb.
Main window
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If the main window shows a vertical scrollbar you can put a finger anywhere on any mixer section and
move it vertically to move all mixer sections.
Menus
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Tap outside of the menu to close it.
Touch hardware and Windows versions
A tablet or a convertible notebook (which lets you flip the lid, so the screen is outside when the lid is closed)
would be a nice computer to use. Another interesting option would be a touchscreen mounted on a stand,
connected to your computer. It's best to have the screen sloped towards you.
The best touch experience is provided by Windows 8 or newer, combined with a multi-touch screen. Multitouch means you can use multiple fingers simultaneously. The onscreen MIDI keyboard benefits from this,
and it allows for two-finger zooming.
MultitrackStudio can be used with single-touch touchscreens or older Windows versions. Note that older
monitors based on resistive technology require a significant amount of pressure applied by your finger. Such
a monitor is not recommended beause it makes it very hard to drag you finger over the screen, so controlling
faders, knobs and editors etc. is very difficult.
Features not available in touchscreen mode
Some features are not available in touchscreen mode. Most notably:
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Labels aren't available.
Collapsing mixer sections isn't possible. The buttons would get in the way and the collapsed sections
would be too small.
The editor's warp feature currently can't be used with touch.
14.2 Pen
MultitrackStudio can be controlled using a pen (stylus) instead of a mouse. It basically works just like a
mouse, but there are some convenient extras:
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You can scroll mixer sections vertically by grabbing a mixer section and moving the pen. Do not place
the pen on a control (a knob, a button etc.). Using the level meter is OK.
Pianoroll and Score editors can be scrolled vertically using the lefthand part of the editor.
Editors can be scrolled horizontally using the main window's bottom bar.
You can pull a track's Edit button horizontally to pop up its rightclick menu.
You can pull a mixer section's collapse button (in the top right corner) horizontally to pop up its
rightclick menu.
You can pull down a marker to pop up a menu with rename options etc.
You can press the tranport's play button for a second to start cycling.
You can press an effect/instrument slot for a second to pop up the effect/instrument selector.
There are onscreen keyboards for typing text (see the "Keyboards for Pen" button in the Preferences
window).
14.3 Microsoft Surface
Note: this feature requires Windows 8.1 or newer
The Microsoft Surface Pro 3 not only comes with multitouch, but with an active pen too. MultitrackStudio has
a 'Pen with touch scrolling' mode to make the most out of these features. This mode should work with
devices other than the Surface Pro 3 as well, provided it has both multitouch and an active pen.
The 'Pen with touch scrolling' mode works with pen almost exclusively. You can use touch to scroll and zoom
editors, to scroll the mixer sections vertically, to scroll lists and to play the onscreen MIDI keyboard. All other
touch actions are ignored, so you can't tap something accidentally with the hand palm.
'Pen with touch scrolling' mode is great for MIDI editing because the pen is far more accurate than the touch
screen. You can edit rapidly using the pen and navigate easily using touch.
A button is available in the main window for switching between pen and touch mode quickly. This button
appears next to the Studio button. It's present when the 'Input Device' setting (see Preferences) is set to
either Touchscreen or 'Pen with touch scrolling'.
Touch / Pen button
In 'Pen with touch scrolling' mode the pen works slightly different (compared to the regular pen behavior), so
it nicely matches the touchscreen mode. Most notably, resizing notes in the piano roll editor works similar to
the touchscreen behavior.
The following Preferences settings are recommended for the Surface Pro 3:
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Size: 240%
Input Device: Touchscreen or 'Pen with touch scrolling'
Keyboard for Pen: enabled
Color Theme: Ultra Dark
These settings are used automatically if MultitrackStudio is installed on a Surface Pro 3 provided no settings
from an older version are present.
Tip: you can disable the Surface's Windows Button (in the bezel) using the Surface app in order to avoid
pressing it accidentally.
15 Keyboard Shortcuts
15.1 Keyboard Shortcuts (Windows)
Transport
These shortcuts work in the main window, effect/instrument windows and editor windows:
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Home: Go to start of song.
End: Go to end of song.
Space Bar: Toggle transport start/stop.
Shift+Space Bar: Start at last start position (if transport stopped), Stop and move to start position (if
transport running).
Left/Right Arrow: Rewind/Fast Forward.
Several modifier keys can be used combined with the left/right arrow keys:
¡ M: To previous/next Marker.
¡ B: To previous/next bar.
¡ E: To previous/next beat.
¡ S: One second backward/forward.
¡ I: One minute backward/forward.
¡ Q: One quarter hour backward/forward.
¡ H: One hour backward/forward.
¡ R: To last recording start/end.
¡ Alt: Walk through history of recent start positions (and the last stop position if transport is
stopped). These positions are also available from the Markers menu. You can press Alt+Left
Arrow to manually 'loop' part of the song. This can be useful when setting up effects.
¡ Ctrl: Move one pixel in the editors. The actual amount of time depends on the zoom level.
Page Up/Down: Move one editor page. The actual amount of time depends on the zoom level and the
window width.
F6: Cycle selected part of focused track.
F7: Set cycle region start point.
F8: Set cycle region end point.
C+Space Bar: Start cycling
-: Zoom Out.
+: Zoom In.
These work in the main window only:
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Ctrl+M: Add Marker.
Ctrl+Alt+V: Show/Hide VariSpeed control (Pro edition only).
Main Window
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Up/Down Arrow: Scroll mixer sections up/down. Add Ctrl key to scroll one page. In Multi Column
Rack mode (see Preferences) these keys scroll one section's width left or right.
Tab / Shift+Tab: Focus next/previous section. Add Ctrl key to focus last / first section.
Ctrl+S: Save song.
Ctrl+N: Show Comments window.
Ctrl+I: Show Windows audio recording settings.
Ctrl+J: Toggle Soft Monitoring.
Ctrl+P: Toggle Punch In/Out recording.
Ctrl+Q: Toggle Sound On Sound recording.
Ctrl+L: Show Add Click Track window.
Ctrl+T: Add empty track.
Ctrl+Alt+A: Add Audio Track.
Ctrl+Alt+M: Add MIDI Track.
Ctrl+Alt+I: Import audio/MIDI file.
Ctrl+Alt+G: Add .gjm track.
Ctrl+Alt+J: Add .gjs track.
Ctrl+Alt+W: Add .wav track (same as Ctrl+Alt+A).
Ctrl+Alt+3: Add .mp3 track.
Ctrl+Alt+P: Add .mpt track.
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Alt+T: Alternate Take, add Shift to avoid rewinding.
Ctrl+Alt+T: Alternate Take (in new tracks), add Shift to avoid rewinding.
Ctrl+R: Show Delay Before Recording window.
Ctrl+K: Show Keyboard Splitter window.
Insert: Toggle Ripple button.
Ctrl+G: Toggle Snap button.
Ctrl+B: Toggle Bars button.
Ctrl+Alt+B: Switch time grid to bars.
Ctrl+Alt+S: Switch time grid to seconds.
Ctrl+E: Show Tempo / Time Signature Editor.
Ctrl+Alt+E: Show Song Editor.
Ctrl+H: Show Chords Editor.
Ctrl+Alt+H: Show Lyrics Editor.
Ctrl+O: Show Audio Output Control.
Ctrl+F: Show Remote Control window.
Ctrl+D: Show Devices window.
Ctrl+Alt+C: Show/hide CPU usage indicator.
Ctrl+Alt+D: Show/hide disk space indicator.
F11: Enter / leave full screen mode.
Ctrl+W: Show/hide wizard.
F1: Show help on the item the mouse points to.
Editors
Most editors can be operated using the standard Windows keyboard shortcuts. A track editor can only be
controlled using keyboard shortcuts if the track has focus. The Time Signature and Tempo editors do not
support keyboard shortcuts.
The following shortcuts are supported:
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Alt+Enter: Edit
Ctrl+Z: Undo
Ctrl+Y: Redo (Ctrl+Shift+Z also works)
Ctrl+X: Cut
Ctrl+C: Copy
Ctrl+V: Paste
Delete: Delete
Ctrl+A: Select All
Ctrl+Shift+I: Make punch-in point equal to transport position
Ctrl+Shift+O: Make punch-out point equal to transport position
Shift+Left/Right Arrow: Shift editors left/right while keeping transport position
Alt: Temporarily switch between Select Notes/Dots and Add mode
The Multi MIDI Editor also features:
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Up/Down Arrow: scroll up/down. Add Ctrl key to scroll all the way up/down.
Tab / Shift+Tab: make next/previous track active.
Alt+M: Move selected notes to active track.
Chords/Lyrics editors:
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Tab / Shift+Tab: to next/previous bar.
Add Audio Track window
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Ctrl+M: Mono
Ctrl+S: Stereo
Ctrl+N: Show # of tracks box (Pro edition only).
Effect/Instrument windows
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F3 or Ctrl+F: Show effect/instrument selector
F5: Reset Level History (Compressor, Dynamics, Noisegate), Reset spectrum averaging (EQ), Reload
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VST plugin (VST/VSTi plugin).
Ctrl+M: Reset custom remote control knob mappings
MultitrackStudio Instruments window
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Up/Down Arrow: Step through available instruments.
External MIDI Instrument window
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Up/Down Arrow: Change Program
Shift+Up/Down Arrow: Change Bank
Alt shortcuts
Most windows, including the main window, feature shortcuts using the Alt key. If you press the Alt key the
shortcut characters will appear underlined. The shortcuts will hide again when the Alt key is released. The
shortcut key should be pressed before the Alt key is released.
In the main window, only the mixer section which has focus can be controlled using Alt shortcuts. A dot
appears on the left hand side of the mixer section indicating it is focused. Tab and Shift+Tab can be used to
move focus. Clicking a section (including any of its controls) will focus that section as well.
The Preference and EQ windows have a similar focus mechanism.
Focus indicator (left) and Pan knob after pressing Alt+P (right).
Volume faders and rotary knobs can be edited using Alt shortcuts as well. An edit field appears in which a
new value can be typed. Pressing Enter accepts the new value, Esc discards it.
Instead of typing a value you can use the up/down arrow keys to move the control.
Note: the left Alt key should be used on some international keyboards.
Mouse modifier keys
Mouse modifier keys change the effect of a mouse click if you keep the key down while clicking.
Standard modifier keys
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Ctrl (while selecting): Select item without deselecting existing items (MIDI editor notes, track Solo
buttons)
Ctrl (while dragging): Copy item instead of move it (editors and effect slots)
Transport
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Alt (on Overview Bar thumb): drag to select cycle region and start transport
Shift (on Start button): Start at last start position
C (on Start button): Start cycling
Rotary Knobs
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Shift: Move to center position
Ctrl: Show text edit box to type new value
Faders
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Ctrl: Show text edit box to type new value
Effect Slots
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B: Toggle effect's Bypass button
M: Open all slots in the same group of slots (eg. all slots in a track, or in a Multi Effect etc.)
Track buttons
The Play, Rec, Mute and Edit buttons of all tracks will be toggled if you keep the Ctrl key down while clicking
a track's button.
Editor Time Bars
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Alt (on thumb): drag to select cycle region and start transport
Audio/MIDI editors
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Alt (on edges selected part): Stretch selected part
Alt (in selected part): Warp selected part
Pianoroll, Score and Drum editor notes
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V: Velocity (volume) of note
D: Duration of note
S: Sharpen note (one semitone up)
F: Flatten note (one semitone down)
Q: Quantize note (move it to the current grid)
R: Remove (delete) note
T: Transpose note one octave up or down
X: eXpand to chord (eg. click a C and select major: an E and a G will be added)
1: make it a whole note
2: make it a half note
3: make it a quarter note
4: make it an 8th note
5: make it a 16th note
6: make it a 32nd note
A: add/remove dot (score only)
Shift: prevent note from moving horizontally while dragging it
The V, D, T and X mouse modifiers pop up a small selector, which will disappear when you release the
mouse button. You can select an item by moving the mouse while the mouse button is still down.
The Drum Editor doesn't support mouse modifiers which don't make sense for percussion instruments (like
Duration, Sharpen, Expand to chord etc.).
The 1..6 modifiers can also be used on the score editor's note duration box.
Mouse wheel
The mouse wheel or touchpad can be used in various places:
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Move mixer sections vertically.
Move faders and rotary knobs (in main window use horizontal movements or add the Shift key).
Scroll lists.
Scroll MIDI editors vertically.
Combined with Shift key:
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Zoom editors horizontally.
Combined with Ctrl key:
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While mouse is over left hand side of editor: zoom editor vertically.
Zoom Lyrics Prompter.
15.2 Keyboard Shortcuts (Mac)
Transport
These shortcuts work in the main window, effect/instrument windows and editor windows:
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Home or Option-Left Arrow: Go to start of song.
End: Go to end of song.
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Space Bar: Toggle transport start/stop.
Shift-Space Bar: Start at last start position (if transport stopped), Stop and move to start position (if
transport running).
Left/Right Arrow: Rewind/Fast Forward.
Several modifier keys can be used combined with the left/right arrow keys:
¡ M: To previous/next Marker.
¡ B: To previous/next bar.
¡ E: To previous/next beat.
¡ S: One second backward/forward.
¡ I: One minute backward/forward.
¡ Q: One quarter hour backward/forward.
¡ H: One hour backward/forward.
¡ R: To last recording start/end.
¡ Command: Walk through history of recent start positions (and the last stop position if transport
is stopped). These positions are also available from the Markers menu. You can press
Command-Left Arrow to manually 'loop' part of the song. This can be useful when setting up
effects.
¡ Ctrl: Move one pixel in the editors. The actual amount of time depends on the zoom level.
Page Up/Down: Move one editor page. The actual amount of time depends on the zoom level and the
window width.
F6: Cycle selected part of focused track.
F7: Set cycle region start point.
F8: Set cycle region end point.
C+Space Bar: Start cycling
-: Zoom Out.
+: Zoom In.
These work in the main window only:
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Option-M: Add Marker.
Option-Command-V: Show/Hide VariSpeed control (Pro edition only).
Main Window
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Command-S: Save song.
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Command-I: Show System Preferences audio setings.
Command-J: Toggle Soft Monitoring.
Command-P: Toggle Punch In/Out recording.
Option-Command-P: Toggle Sound On Sound recording.
Command-L: Show Add Click Track window.
Command-T: Add empty track.
Option-Command-A: Add Audio Track.
Option-Command-M: Add MIDI Track.
Option-Command-I: Import audio/MIDI file.
Option-T: Alternate Take, add Shift to avoid rewinding.
Option-Command-T: Alternate Take (in new tracks), add Shift to avoid rewinding.
Command-Y: Show Delay Before Recording window.
Command-K: Show Keyboard Splitter window.
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Command-R: Toggle Ripple button.
Command-G: Toggle Snap button.
Command-B: Toggle Bars button.
Command-E: Show Tempo / Time Signature Editor.
Option-Command-E: Show Song Editor.
Option-Command-C: Show Chords Editor.
Option-Command-L: Show Lyrics Editor.
Command-O: Show Audio Output Control.
Command-D: Show Devices window.
Ctrl-Command-F: Enter / exit full screen mode.
Command-,: Show Preferences window.
Shift-Command-?: Open Help menu, including a item that shows help on the control under the mouse
pointer in the active window.
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Command-M: Minimize window.
Up/Down Arrow: Scroll mixer sections up/down. Add Command key to scroll one page. In Multi
Column Rack mode (see Preferences) these keys scroll one section's width left or right.
Ctrl-A: Open Add Track menu.
Ctrl-B: Edit BPM box.
Ctrl-E: Open Edit menu.
Ctrl-I: Edit Time Sig box.
Ctrl-K: Open transport start button menu.
Ctrl-L: Open Songlist menu (if songlist bar is visible).
Ctrl-N: Open transport position menu.
Ctrl-Q: Open Tempo menu.
Ctrl-R: Open Recording menu.
Ctrl-S: Open Song menu.
Ctrl-U: Open Studio menu.
Ctrl-W: Edit transport position box.
Ctrl-X: Open Mix Down menu.
Ctrl-Z: Open editor zoom factor selector.
The mixer section which has focus responds to keyboard shortcuts. A dot appears on the left hand side of
the mixer section indicating it is focused. Tab and Shift-Tab can be used to move focus. Clicking a section
(including any of its controls) will focus that section as well.
Focus indicator (left) and Pan knob after pressing Ctrl-P (right).
There are keyboard shortcuts for Volume faders and rotary knobs as well. An edit field appears in which a
new value can be typed. Pressing Enter accepts the new value, Esc discards it.
Instead of typing a value you can use the up/down arrow keys to move the control. Note that you'll have to
press Esc to accept this value, since Enter accepts the edit field's value.
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Tab/Shift-Tab: Focus next/previous section. Add Ctrl key to focus last / first section.
Ctrl-C: Toggle Rec button focused track.
Ctrl-D: Open editor focused track.
Ctrl-F: Open file menu focused track.
Ctrl-M: Toggle Mute button focused section.
Ctrl-O: Toggle Solo button focused section (Mono on Master section).
Ctrl-P: Edit pan knob focused track.
Ctrl-Y: Toggle Play button focused track.
Ctrl-V: Edit volume slider focused track.
Ctrl-1: Edit effect send 1 knob focused track (2= second effect send etc.).
Ctrl-F1: Open first slot (effect/instrument) focused section.
Ctrl-F2: Open second slot focused section.
Ctrl-F3: Open third slot focused section.
Note: OS X may override the Ctrl-function key shortcuts.
Editors
Most editors can be operated using the standard OS X keyboard shortcuts. A track editor can only be
controlled using keyboard shortcuts if the track has focus. The Time Signature and Tempo editors do not
support keyboard shortcuts.
The following shortcuts are supported:
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Command-/: Edit
Command-Z: Undo
Option-Command-Z: Redo
Command-X: Cut
Command-C: Copy
Command-V: Paste
Delete: Delete
Command-A: Select All
Shift-Command-I: Make punch-in point equal to transport position
Shift-Command-O: Make punch-out point equal to transport position
Shift-Left/Right Arrow: Shift editors left/right while keeping transport position
Option: Temporarily switch between Select Notes/Dots and Add mode
The Multi MIDI Editor also features:
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Up/Down Arrow: scroll up/down. Add Command key to scroll all the way up/down.
Tab / Shift-Tab: make next/previous track active.
Option-M: Move selected notes to active track.
Chords/Lyrics editors:
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Tab / Shift-Tab: to next/previous bar.
Add Audio Track window
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Command-M: Mono
Command-S: Stereo
Command-N: Show # of tracks box (Pro edition only).
Ctrl-T: Open Type selector.
Ctrl-C: Open Channels selector.
Ctrl-Q: Open Quality selector.
Effect/Instrument windows
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Command-F: Show effect/instrument selector
Command-R: Reset Level History (Compressor, Dynamics, Noisegate), Reset spectrum averaging
(EQ), Reload plugin (VST/VSTi/AU/AUi plugin).
Command-M: Reset custom remote control knob mappings
Ctrl-B: Toggle effect Bypass button.
Ctrl-C: Edit instrument Channel box.
Ctrl-M: Toggle sidechain effect Monitor button.
Ctrl-P: Open Presets menu.
Ctrl-F1: Open sidechain effect sidechain source menu.
MultitrackStudio Instruments window
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Up/Down Arrow: Step through available instruments.
SoundFont Player window
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Up/Down Arrow: Step through presets provided by current soundfont.
External MIDI Instrument window
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Up/Down Arrow: Change Program
Shift-Up/Down Arrow: Change Bank
Mouse modifier keys
Mouse modifier keys change the effect of a mouse click if you keep the key down while clicking.
Standard modifier keys
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Command (while selecting): Select item without deselecting existing items (MIDI editor notes, track
Solo buttons)
Option (while dragging): Copy item instead of move it (editors and effect slots)
Transport
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Option (on Overview Bar thumb): drag to select cycle region and start transport
Shift (on Start button): Start at last start position
C (on Start button): Start cycling
Rotary Knobs
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Shift: Move to center position
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Command: Show text edit box to type new value
Faders
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Command: Show text edit box to type new value
Effect Slots
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B: Toggle effect's Bypass button
M: Open all slots in the same group of slots (eg. all slots in a track, or in a Multi Effect etc.)
Track buttons
The Play, Rec, Mute and Edit buttons of all tracks will be toggled if you keep the Command key down while
clicking a track's button.
Editor Time Bars
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Option (on thumb): drag to select cycle region and start transport
Audio/MIDI editors
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Command (on edges selected part): Stretch selected part
Command (in selected part): Warp selected part
Pianoroll, Score and Drum editor notes
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V: Velocity (volume) of note
D: Duration of note
S: Sharpen note (one semitone up)
F: Flatten note (one semitone down)
Q: Quantize note (move it to the current grid)
R: Remove (delete) note
T: Transpose note one octave up or down
X: eXpand to chord (eg. click a C and select major: an E and a G will be added)
1: make it a whole note
2: make it a half note
3: make it a quarter note
4: make it an 8th note
5: make it a 16th note
6: make it a 32nd note
A: add/remove dot (score only)
Shift: prevent note from moving horizontally while dragging it
The V, D, T and X mouse modifiers pop up a small selector, which will disappear when you release the
mouse button. You can select an item by moving the mouse while the mouse button is still down.
The Drum Editor doesn't support mouse modifiers which don't make sense for percussion instruments (like
Duration, Sharpen, Expand to chord etc.).
The 1..6 modifiers can also be used on the score editor's note duration box.
Trackpad gestures
Trackpad gestures can be used in various places.
Two finger swipe:
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Move mixer sections vertically.
Move faders and rotary knobs (only horizontal movements work in main window).
Scroll lists.
Scroll editors horizontally.
Scroll MIDI editors vertically.
Pinch:
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Zoom editors horizontally.
While pointer is over left hand side of editor: zoom editor vertically.
Mouse wheel
The mouse wheel can be used in various places:
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Move mixer sections vertically.
Move faders and rotary knobs (in main window use horizontal movements or add the Shift key).
Scroll lists.
Scroll MIDI editors vertically.
Combined with Command key:
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Zoom editors horizontally.
While mouse is over left hand side of editor: zoom editor vertically.
Zoom Lyrics Prompter.
16 Preferences
The Preferences window contains some general settings:
User Interface:
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Color Theme: Choose a color theme. The Classic themes (Windows only) make the program look like
pre-version 5 MultitrackStudio.
Size: If you have problems reading or operating the user interface you can make it larger. The Auto
option uses the Windows DPI setting on Windows. A suitable value is used on Mac. The "VST Scaling
(ugly)" option, available on Windows Vista or newer, makes the program not dpi aware, so Windows
scales it automatically. This looks blurry, but it does scale VST plugins too. VST scaling depends on
the Windows DPI setting exclusively, while MultitrackStudio scaling values can be chosen from the
Size box. Sizes which are smaller than the Windows DPI setting can't be used if "VST Scaling (ugly)"
is checked. Size setting changes have no effect until you've restarted MultitrackStudio.
Effect Slots: Mixer sections can have either 3 or 6 effect slots. If a 6-slot song is opened in a 3-slot
MultitrackStudio version the extra effects will appear in a Multi Effect.
Input Device (Windows only): Choose Touchscreen if you're using a touchscreen, choose "Mouse,
Keyboard" otherwise. On a Microsoft Surface Pro 3 there's also a 'Pen with touch scrolling' option.
Show tooltips: Turn on/off the tooltips that appear on moving the mouse over a control. Note that
many tooltips provide helpful information which you won't be able to see if your turn them off.
Keyboards for Pen: Show onscreen keyboard on tapping a text box with a pen.
Knob Style: Using the Rotary style you can "grab the dot" and move it. Use the Vertical/Horizontal
style if you'd rather use horizontal or vertical mouse movements instead.
If Input Device is set to Touchscreen (Windows only) the Knob Style selector offers Horizontal/Rotating
and Vertical styles. Using the Horizontal/Rotating you can either move your finger horizontally, or you
can draw a circle below the knob. Using the Vertical style knobs can be controlled using vertical
movements exclusively. Note that the Vertical style doesn't allow for scrolling mixer sections vertically
while touching a pan or effect send knob.
Multi Column Rack: this option arranges the mixer sections using multiple columns instead of just
one. If the sections don't fit the screen a horizontal scrollbar appears. This can be used to utilize the
space of a large (22" or more) monitor. It can also be used for dual-monitor setups.
CPU Usage / Disk Usage: Show the CPU/disk usage on the bottom bar.
Transport:
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Stop playback at end of song: Stop transport when it reaches the end of the Overview Bar, ie. at the
end of the longest track or at the last marker, whichever comes last. Reverb tails etc. are played back
correctly, so it may play past the end of the overview bar and then jump back. Transport doesn't stop if
there are any recording tracks.
Editors:
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Scrubber on track editors: The track editor scrubbing feature can be turned on/off.
Show all buttons (no "More"): Hide the More button that appears on some editors and show buttons
for all the options.
"Wave" tab (MIDI editors): Adds a "Wave" tab to the Piano/Score/Drum tabs. The Wave editor shows
the MIDI data as if it were an audio signal.
Handles for MIDI notes (touch) (Windows only): Use handles near the edge of the editors to move
selected notes. If this option is off notes can be manipulated directly. Affects touchscreen only.
Sticky add/draw modes (touch) (Windows only): If it's off MIDI editors and automation editors switch
back to select mode after adding a note/dot, so you must switch to Add mode again in order to add
another note/dot. This helps avoiding adding notes/dots inadvertently. Affects touchscreen only.
Default MIDI Editor: Here you can choose the type of MIDI editor that appears by default.
Default Mode (MIDI): Determines which of the three buttons in the bottom left corner of the MIDI
editors is 'on' by default. It defaults to Select Part, which works similar to audio editors and is suitable if
you do a lot of MIDI recording. You might want to switch to Select Notes or Add Notes if you enter
notes using the mouse a lot.
MIDI Options:
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Default Instrument: Determines the MIDI instrument that appears in a new track. Options are
"MultitrackStudio Instruments" and "External MIDI Instrument 1".
File Format: Determines the timing precision used for saving MIDI files. '480 ticks per quarter
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note' (default) is the most compatible option, but '30 frames per sec./200 ticks per frame' offers the
highest resolution. The latter is not as widely supported, music notation software typically won't open
this type of files.
Middle C Name: Determines the name of MIDI note 60. Can be C3, C4 or C5 (C5 is the default value).
Sampler Memory: Determines the maximum amount of memory to be used for Sampler instruments.
The operating system will be forced to use the hard disk if too much memory is being used. This 'disk
swapping' will decrease performance significantly, and should therefore be avoided. This setting is
intended for lowering the Sampler's memory usage to make room for other audio programs (eg.
sampler type VSTi plugins). This setting has no effect if there are no Samplers.
Switch editor grid to bars automatically: switch the time grid to bars if there's at least one MIDI track
in the song.
Switch transport counter to bars automatically: switch the transport count and overview bar to bars
if there's at least one MIDI track in the song.
Folders and Presets:
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Root Folder for New Songs: A new folder will be created in this folder for each new song. It defaults
to "My Documents\MultitrackStudio Songs" (Windows) / "/Users/username/Music/MultitrackStudio
Songs" (Mac).
VST plugins:
Windows: Specifies the VST Folder. All VST Plugins you want to use should be located in this folder
or one of its subfolders. See also Customizing the VST folder.
Note: the 64-bit version will ask for permission to run "MtStudio.exe" as Administrator. That's to update
the registry, so VST plugin installers can find the VST folder.
Mac: VST plugins are typically located in the user or system Library/Audio/Plug-ins/VST folder, so
there's no need to specify a folder here. You can specify an additional folder if you have one.
Sampler patches: Specifies the folder that contains sampler patches (see organizing your patches)
Convolutor impulse responses: Specifies the folder that contains impulse responses. This box is
empty by default. You can create a folder for your IR files and select it here.
Presets: Export saves all presets and templates to a zip file, Import reads presets and templates
from a zip file.
The Bring back 'don't show again' messages button will cause any turned off messages to be shown
again.
17 Tools
The following tools are available from the Studio->Tools menu:
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Sample Rate Converter
Stereo Merger
Sample Rate Converter
Changes the samplerate of a file. Can be used (for instance) for CD(44.1 kHz)/DAT(48 kHz) conversion.
Samplerate can be thought of as being the digital equivalent of the analog tape recorder's tape speed.
The Noise Shaping button determines whether or not to apply noise shaping to the dither signal.
Stereo Merger
The Stereo Merger takes two mono audio files and merges them into one stereo audio file. One file is used
for the left channel, the other for the right channel.
18 Miscellaneous
18.1 Patch Editor
The Patch Editor allows you to modify existing patches or create new patches.
Patch Editor window
A patch consists of one or more samples. A sample is an audio file containing a single note of the instrument
the patch is for (for instance a single piano key hit).
Samples
Samples can be triggered by three trigger sources: "Note On", "Note On with Sustain" and "Note Off". Most
patches use "Note On" samples only. "Note On with Sustain" samples are used instead if the Sustain pedal
is down at when the note is played. "Note Off" samples are fired when a note ends. The Match Note-Off
Levels button can be used to automatically match the level of the "Note Off" sample with the current level of
the playing note. The sample's Gain property determines the highest allowed level in this situation.
"Note On with Sustain" and "Note Off" samples will typically be used for large piano patches.
For every sample the following properties must be defined:
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Note: The note of the recorded sample (for instance 'C5')
Layer: The velocity layer the sample is in. Velocity is zero on the left, and 127 on the right. The active
region appears in color. A region can be activated by clicking the mouse on it. See also Layer
Thresholds.
Sample File: Audio file containing the sample. Can be either mono or stereo.
Samplerate: The samplerate of the audio file (for instance '44100'). This parameter can also be used
for fine-tuning (for instance: multiplying the samplerate with 1.0116 increases the perceived pitch by 20
cents).
The following properties are optional:
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Lowest Note: The lowest note this sample will be used for. Use this to override the Sampler's default
note-assignment rules, or to set the lowest note the patch can produce.
Highest Note: The highest note this sample will be used for. Use this to override the Sampler's default
note-assignment rules, or to set the highest note the patch can produce.
LoopStart: The position in samples at which the loop starts.
LoopEnd: The position in samples at which the loop ends. Should always be higher than LoopStart.
LoopGain: The relative volume level of each consecutive passage through the loop (for instance
'0.900'). If loopgain is equal to the sample's level at LoopEnd divided by the level at LoopStart a natural
decay results.
Gain: Gain level, 1.000 is neutral
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Pan: Pan position, 50 is center
Excl: Exclusive Group, can be 1 or higher. Only one note can be active at once per group, so currently
playing notes will be stopped if a new one arrives. This can be used to mute a hi-hat when it's closed.
All parameters can be edited while the Transport is running.
Layer Thresholds
The Layer Thresholds control contains 15 sliders. You can drag the sliders. If your patch contains less than
16 layers you can drag any unused sliders all the way left.
Formant Correction
In general, instruments played hard produce more harmonics than they do when played soft (the 'formant'
changes). The Sampler contains a special filter that mimics this behavior. This filter can be activated using
the Formant Correction button.
General Controls
The Release control sets the time it takes to reach 60dB attenuation when a Note-Off event is received.
When Discard NoteOff is active Note-Off events are ignored. This is useful for drum patches.
The Brightness control controls the relative level of the sample's harmonics.
Using the Detune control the patch can be exactly tuned.
The Piano Sustain button makes the sustain pedal behave like it does on a piano, ie. the sustain pedal can
still "catch" the sound of keys that have been released if the corresponding strings aren't fully damped yet.
The Variation button will slightly change the pitch, brightness and volume level of every note. This can be
used to avoid machine-gun effects when notes are played repetitively. Some real-world instruments, like
piano and organ, can't really produce these pitch and brightness changes, it's probably best not to use this
feature on these kind of instruments.
The New Patch button loads an empty patch.
Sustain Pedal noise
The highest note (G10) samples of the "Note On with Sustain" and "Note Off" type are used for a special
purpose. They are triggered by sustain pedal down and up movements respectively. They can be used to
play samples of the sound a piano pedal makes.
18.2 Level Meters
Level meters shows several things:
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The current level.
Signal peaks are being shown by a single segment for 2 seconds.
The peak level since transport start is shown by a dimmed segment. Only recording audio tracks have
this feature.
The right-hand segment will start flashing if clipping occurred (ie. if the level exceeded than 0 dB). This
only happens if this overload actually is a problem:
¡ Recording audio tracks
¡ Recording MIDI soft instrument tracks
¡ Master section
¡ Group and Effect Return sections which are routed to the sound device (Pro edition only).
You can rightclick (Windows) / Ctrl-click (Mac) a meter to reset it, so it stops flashing.
A speaker symbol appears to indicate output clipping in soft-monitored audio tracks (the meter itself
shows the input level).
The Level Meters are based on DIN PPM meters, where 0db = 0dBFS.
If the audio signal is stereo a meter will display both the left and the right channel, the upper signal being the
left channel.
Clicking a meter pops up a much larger version in a new window. This can be used if you need to watch the
meter from a distance (to set up recording levels for example).
18.3 Dither
MultitrackStudio's internal data format is 32 bit fixed point. Every time truncation to 16 or 24 bit is performed
(for instance: when sending the mixer output to the sound device, or when saving files created by the
Sample Rate Converter) adequate dithering is applied. Dithering turns distortion (caused by truncation) into
random noise. This noise is less objectionable because of its random nature. The dither signal used is called
HP-TPD (High Pass Triangular Probability Dither).
Noise Shaping can be used to move the dither noise to frequencies the ear can't hear very well, thereby
improving the perceived sound quality even more. However, this type of dither should only be used when
you are sure the file will never be processed again, as doing so will increase noise. MultitrackStudio uses
third order noise shaping at 44.1/48 kHz, and second order noiseshaping at higher sample rates. Noise
Shaping is applied only when truncating to 16 bit, not when truncating to 24 bit.
18.4 Patchmap Files
MultitrackStudio uses patchmap (*.pmp) files to define the names of patches and drum instruments of
hardware synths, so they can be displayed instead of plain numbers where appropriate.
Windows: Patchmap files are located in the PatchMaps subfolder (the full path will typically be C:\Program
Files\MtStudio\PatchMaps\). You can add your own patchmaps in this folder as well.
Mac: You can put your own patchmap files in the user's Library/Application
Support/MultitrackStudio/PatchMaps folder.
Patchmap files can be edited using NotePad (Windows) / TextEdit (Mac) . The following examples
demonstrate how to create patchmap files for your own hardware synthesizer. The italic texts are comments,
these shouldn't be in the actual patchmap files.
Example 1: Banks and Patch Names
This example shows a plain simple patchmap having just two banks.
[patchmap]
mandatory identifier
[bank 0]
bank=1280
This sections holds the first bank. Note it's 0, not 1. Also note the space.
The MIDI bank it applies to. This number equals 128 * MSB + LSB.
MSB and LSB correspond to MIDI controllers #0 and #32 respectively.
In this example MSB=10 and LSB=0.
MIDI program 0 is a piano
MIDI program 1 is a Bass
These values can go up to and including 127
0=Piano
1=Bass
[bank 1]
bank=1281
32=Guitar
33=Violin
This sections holds the second bank. Banks must be numbered sequentially
MSB=10 and LSB=1
MIDI program 32 is a guitar
MIDI program 33 is a violin
Example 2: Drum Instrument Names
Assume our synth has one drum patch. Let's add both the patch and the drum instrument names to the
patchmap:
[patchmap]
[bank 0]
bank=1280
0=Piano
[bank 1]
bank=1281
32=Guitar
33=Violin
64=Acoustic Drum Kit
[drum 0]
bank=0
patch=8
36=Bass Drum
40=Snare
The drum patch is on program number 64
The drums are in bank 0. This equals 128 * MSB + LSB,
see explanation in [bank 0] section of example 1.
The drums are on MIDI program 8
Note 36 is a bass drum
Note 40 is a snare
Additional drum kit sections must be numbered sequentially ([drum 1], [drum2] etc.)
Example 3: Percussion Channel
Assume it's a GM synth, which has one bank only, and drums on channel 10:
[patchmap]
This value is used by the MIDI Port's "Percussion
Channel" button
percussionchannel=10
[bank 0]
bank=-1
channel=1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,11,12,13,14,15,16
0=Piano
1=Bright Piano
12=Marimba
25=Acoustic Guitar
26=Electric Guitar
[drum 0]
channel=10
36=Bass Drum
40=Snare
-1 means "all banks", we do this because GM
doesn't support banks
If you omit the "bank=" statement then it will
default to 0 because it's
the [bank 0] section. [bank 1] defaults to 1 etc.
[bank 0] is not valid for channel 10
These instrument names are valid for channel 10
Example 4: Patch Categories
Let's add some categories. They will appear in the MIDI Port's patch selector.
[patchmap]
[category]
#0=Piano
#1=Guitar
[bank 0]
bank=-1
0=Piano#0
1=Bright Piano#0
12=Marimba
25=Acoustic Guitar#1
26=Electric Guitar#1
This is the section which defines the categories
The first section must be #0. In this case it holds the pianos
The second section holds the guitars
Categories must be numbered sequentially
Add #0 to the name, so MultitrackStudio knows it's in category #0
No category specified here, it will end up in the "Other" category
Add #1 to the name, so MultitrackStudio knows it's in category #1
Example 5: Drum Instrument Categories
Drum Instrument Categories can be defined locally within a drum section:
[patchmap]
[bank 0]
bank=0
0=Piano
1=Bright Piano
[drum 0]
#0=Bass
#1=Snare
35=Acoustic Bass#0
36=Bass Drum 1#0
38=Acoustic Snare#1
39=Hand Clap
40=Electric Snare#1
The first section must be #0. In this case it holds the bass drums
The second section holds the snare drums
Add #0 to the name, so MultitrackStudio knows it's in category #0
Add #1 to the name, so MultitrackStudio knows it's in category #1
No category specified here, it will end up in the "Other" category
Example 6: Controller Names
Let's override some default controller names with custom ones:
[patchmap]
[bank 0]
bank=0
0=Piano
1=Bright Piano
[controllers]
2=Joystick -Y
83=Dynamic Modulation
New name for controller 2
Example 7: Patch Switch Time
Some synths need quite some time to load a patch. Let's make sure MultitrackStudio sends the patch
change messages in time. Note that it's usually not necessary to add this.
[patchmap]
patchswitchtime=750
Schedule patch changes 750 milliseconds earlier
[bank 0]
bank=0
0=Piano
1=Bright Piano
Example 8: Initialization Sysex
A sysex message can be sent before recording or playback starts. This can be used to switch a synth to
multi-mode for example.
[patchmap]
initsysex=f0123456f7
Hex numbers representing system-exclusive MIDI message
[bank 0]
bank=0
0=Piano
1=Bright Piano
If a sysex needs to be send to each MIDI channel used you can replace a hex digit with "<channel>":
[patchmap]
initsysex=f0123<channel>56f7
[bank 0]
bank=0
Hex numbers representing system-exclusive MIDI message
"<channel>" will be replaced with the actual MIDI channel.
0=Piano
1=Bright Piano
19 Requirements
MultitrackStudio has been designed to run very efficiently, so computer requirements are fairly modest.
Some performance issues are discussed in the following sections. With newer computers the sound device
usually is the only thing to worry about.
Operating System
Windows: The 32-bit version of MultitrackStudio can be used on any computer that runs Windows
10/8/7/Vista/XP, including the 64-bit versions of Windows 10/8/7/Vista/XP. The 64-bit version works with the
64-bit versions of Windows 10/8/7/Vista.
Mac: MultitrackStudio works with OS X 10.11 (El Capitan)/10.10 (Yosemite)/10.9 (Mavericks)/10.8 (Mountain
Lion)/10.7 (Lion)/10.6 (Snow Leopard).
Sound Device
At minimum, a 16 bit/44.1kHz/stereo sound device capable of full-duplex operation (ie., simultaneous
playback and recording) is needed for audio recording/playback. Virtually any modern device will be capable
of this.
On Windows XP Soft Monitoring requires an ASIO driver, and it's highly recommended for recording
software MIDI instruments as well (latency will be much too high with the Windows XP audio driver type).
CPU Power
Real time audio processing requires a fast processor. A 500 MHz CPU will let you run a basic mix (a Reverb
and say 10 other effects). The Convolutor, the Sampler and the MultitrackStudio Instruments require a bit
more CPU power. Although they can be used on a 500 MHz CPU, 750 MHz is no luxury if you plan on using
them. The Guitar Amp requires a lot of CPU power too, a 1 GHz CPU is recommended.
If you use 88.2 or 96 kHz samplerates (Pro edition) a 1 GHz or higher CPU is recommended. 2 GHz is
recommended for 192 kHz operation.
MultitrackStudio takes advantage of multiple core CPUs (up to eight CPUs can be used).
Memory Usage
MultitrackStudio's memory requirements are very modest, unless you're using very large sampler patches.
Note that some sample based VSTi plugins can use lots of memory, if you use a lot of those then having 2 or
3 GB of memory is a good idea.
Disk Speed
If your songs contain about ten audio tracks a fast hard disk (7200 RPM as opposed to the once standard
5400 RPM) is recommended.
Audio Gear
You may need some special wires to connect microphones etc. to your sound device, especially if you have
a cheaper sound device which typically use 3.5mm jack plugs, whereas microphones use XLR connectors or
6.3mm jack plugs.
Using an external high-quality mic preamp can significantly improve the sound quality of your recordings.
They usually provide Phantom Power as well, so you can use condenser mics.
An analog compressor can reduce the risk of overloading the sound device's input. It also allows you to get
more out of a 16 bit sound device's resolution.
Not all stereo sound devices allow you to set different recording levels for left and right channels. This can be
quite a problem if you want to record two tracks at the same time (for instance a vocal track and an electric
guitar track). You can solve this problem by using two mic preamps (that have a level control). Using a small
analog mixer may be a cheaper alternative.
20 Troubleshooting
I can't load my master file in my CD writer program.
Make sure the file is a stereo .wav file. If you're using the Pro edition then also make sure it's a 16 bit file
(CDs are always 16 bit).
All other tracks are on the track I recorded. What's wrong?
Your sound device is recording its own audio output. If your sound device comes with some kind of mixer
window you can search for the problematic setting there.
Windows XP: If you're using the Windows XP audio driver type you can go click the Recording Options
area's Input button, and make sure all inputs are turned off (except the one you're using). The offending one
may be called "What U Hear" or "Master".
My vocals are on the left or right channel only.
Record to mono audio files. Microphones are mono, so recording to a stereo file results in one channel being
silent.
Track's Play or Rec Button turns gray when starting Transport.
There is no audio/MIDI device available to play or record this file.
Can't load MIDI files recorded with MultitrackStudio in another application.
In the Preferences window switch the MIDI File Format to '480 ticks per quarter note', this format is more
widely supported than the other one.
There are glitches/short bursts of static in my recordings. or
MIDI device seems to 'pause' periodically. or
Transport stops with 'Buffer over/underrun' message now and then.
Close all other programs.
My audio tracks are out of sync. What can I do?
- Make sure you're using the latest drivers for your sound device
- Try using a samplerate of 48 Khz rather than the default 44.1 kHz (see Song Properties).
- Windows: Try using a different audio driver type.
- Windows: MultitrackStudio's support for the Windows XP audio driver type includes an 'Apply EMU10k1
44.1 kHz Audio Sync Correction' setting. Soundcards of the Soundblaster Live! type (including 128, 512,
1024 and Ensoniq AudioPCI) use slightly different samplerates for playback and recording when using a
samplerate of 44.1 kHz. MultitrackStudio compensates for this effect if the 'Apply EMU10k1 44.1 kHz Audio
Sync Correction' button is engaged in the Select Devices window. Make sure this button is engaged if you
have one the aforementioned soundcards, make sure it isn't if you don't.
- Mac: : If you're using different devices for audio recording and playback you can create an "aggregate
device" using the Audio MIDI Setup application and use that device instead.
My songs play back too fast. What can I do?
- If your sound device's control panel has a samplerate setting, make sure its value is identical to the one
used in the MultitrackStudio Song menu's Properties window.
- Windows: In the Windows Control Panel, set Sound Scheme to "No Sounds".
I hear another instrument while recording using a soft instrument. or
I don't hear a recording soft instrument.
The track you are recording is using a MIDI channel that is not equal to the one your MIDI keyboard uses.
I want to restore the previous version of a file.
Song, songlist, MIDI, patch and .aem files are backed up every time they are saved to disk. The old versions
receive a file extension starting with '~': .hdr, .lml, .mid, .ptc and .aem become .~hdr, .~lml, .~mid, .~ptc
and .~aem respectively. The old versions can be made ready for use by renaming them to a file with the
correct extension.
I hear glitches when opening windows etc. in Windows Vista.
- Try turning off the Aero Vista looks (switch to the Windows Classic display theme).
- If you're using an ASIO driver: try turning on MMCSS (see Compensating for driver issues).
The file open/save dialogs hang on Windows Vista
This happens to a small number of users. Just terminate the program using the Task Manager and run
MultitrackStudio again. MultitrackStudio will now revert to using the old style dialogs automatically.
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