****Loop based music and sequencing are two VERY different things .... so it makes it a little bit difficult to answer your question the way you asked it.
But I'll try to help....
...Acid has a very good sequencing interface. It works very well and it offers a lot more power IMHO, than any keyboard workstation ever could when you consider the ability to use VSTi and the strength of piano roll style sequence editing...
If you've never sequenced in a computer, then you will have a learning curve, but once you learn the method of piano roll style editing, you will not want to use another method. ****
Actually, I wasn't talking about midi sequencing, although I have done it before- I was talking about audio sequencing...essentially using ACID instead of Vegas to lay down a song, 1 live instrument at a time (or a softsynth). ACID has the ability to use softsynths, although I am more interested in recording the 'audio' from these and not the midi information.
Maybe I am not so clear here...what does Vegas have to offer (keeping in mind, I don't need it for video) as a live tracking program over ACID?
"However, I have been testing Vegas generating MIDI Clock to drive Reason, and it is lockup dead on. While MIDI clock sync is not as integrated as using a method such as ReWire, it is a viable solution that works."
Disregarding the "quality of lockup" can of worms --I find the difference between Acid>Rewire>Reason and Vegas>SFMidirouter>Reason to be audible, but I'm sure there are many variables, including some that fall in the unquantifiable Heisenbergian crack of perception -- I still wouldn't call it a viable solution to modern production, for this reason (among others):
Unless one uses an external mixer it isn't possible to hear everything through the same monitor chain, or at least not with my hardware, or use the same effects, compression, etc...
Betting against the move toward mixing and generating sounds internally on a single machine seems a bit behind the curve and counterintuitive at this point.
I still believe the inclusion of Rewire in Acid -- while in every way a good thing -- to be a bit redundant vis-a-vis Rewire in Vegas, which has no access to internally created sounds at all. Even if it was only a single rewire bus, a stereo pair and co-rendering...
But, as it sounds like you're defending a decision already made, so be it.
I could be wrong there and I hope I am; but if it is the case I believe it to be a less than wonderful decision, even if only in terms of being responsive to your user base.
I can do electronic production work on Sonar. Which works great in that capacity, though by comparison to Vegas editing and comping vocals and many necessary tasks are like working with one hand tied behind the back -- a tribute to your fine work in the designing of Vegas.
For which I thank you.
I don't see a problem there, just use the same tools you would if it were written in Piano Roll including using Piano Roll's lower window to draw envelopes after the notation is entered. As I said in a previous post, I use Piano Roll when I'm forced to but only after I've quickly scored the part in Staff View. I'll admit pushing/pulling timing can ruin the accuracy of the notation but I almost never have to do any pushing or pulling unless I have to work against some other musician that has difficulty playing in time. Besides in a rubato scenario, the drums would usually be the constant. If we're talking that kind of fluctuation, I'd play it real-time. Drawing a tempo map is not difficult either but again I do very little of that also.
Here's an entire song I did quite a while ago as an experiment using very old gear. It's written totally in Cakewalk Home Studio 9.01 Staff View. It's the first time I didn't play the parts in real-time. All tracks are written by hand in notation. Voices are from Korg M3R & Roland SPD 20. Audio Mixed in Vegas Audio 2 in 2000. No timing adjustments were made at all. I didn't spend that much time on it, I didn't expect to use it as an example here,
Edit; Apparently Soundclick won't allow me to link directly to the file, the song I'm referring to is the third one down on this page called Swing Me
"If you are doing a rubato section using notation style sequence editing, how do you achieve a feel that is accurate to a performance?"
There's no real argument in my opinion as to which is better, the piano roll or the music notation. I find both usefull and use them together. You'll have to excuse me for having to keep reflecting back to Studio Vision, but in my opinion that was the best midi sequencer, the audio features when they got added did suck though. But anyways, Vision would allow you to add notes in the music notation, and you are correct there is a quantization level by just adding the notes, sometimes the duration wouldn't be quite right to get the performance you want. It was good enough to get the basic performances rhythm down though. So then that's when you go back to the piano roll and adjust your durations. Then you might find, that the attack or accents, just isn't quite right, and then that's when you goto the list editor. So to me, the piano roll, music notation view, and list editor are all eccensials and need to work together so you can easily go from one to the other and get the things done that I described. It's actually quicker sometimes to start a performance adding notes with your mouse, than enabling tracks and recording it. 80% of the time when doing sequencing I work in the piano roll view, but I still need that other 20% with the music note view and list editor view to get 100% done. The other thing that is great about the music notation view is that when I compose a song, I will print up the music notations along with a rough mix of the composition and then hand both of those to my guitar player so he can get some ideas and be able to see exactly what key signature, rhythm and notes he's hearing. You just can't do that with a piano roll view.
I cant play piano, I cant write staffs, and I cant imagine what piano key corresponds to a drum
I need drum notes for one thing, at least let us change the names of the keys so we can make our own names from a list of samples or something. Im not very well versed on this sort of thing, but cakewalk's does feel easier to use, the grabbing and sliding on the vegas one just "feels " wrong, when I play with it more I will try and say it in quantifiable steps.
Cakewalk/Sonar will list drum names on the left, in Piano Roll right-click on the left pane (keyboard) and select "Use these note names instead" > chose General MIDI drums for example or any instrument definitions you have installed.
Since we're showing work ... here's something I sequenced in Sonar Producer, cut tracks on my MX2424 and mixed in V4 .... a little ditty from a record I just finished called The String Quartet Tribute To Janet Jackson -- "Love Will Never Do..."
Absolutely true. Some of the best sounding records I've ever heard were mixed by moving musicians around a single microphone. And all of the best ones I've made as a player have been live in big rooms with a big board and other players (and a big budget :-)). Or at least started that way.
"at least let us change the names of the keys so we can make our own names from a list of samples or something."
Where are your drum samples coming from? Usually, if they're from a keyboard, keyboards will usually stick with a common general midi key assignment. At least my Roland keyboards do and most of the sound modules I've used. I generally put all my drum sounds in my sampler, so key assignment isn't an issue for me, since I can assign the sample to any note I want. I guess I'm missing the application for this, can you give an example?
Red I'm not sure what you mean by "application" as in a "use for" or "software". Hopefully I can cover it.
In Cakewalk app's piano roll you can chose to display drum names in the left pane rather than the keyboard with each drum name on the same line the notes are displayed for example Kick 1, Open HH, Ride bell etc.
Many synths and modules have their own unique names for drums and percussion as well as different patches for different drum setups by default and of course most allow you to set up your own patches. A good example of this would be my Roland SPD-20. It has over 700 samples and 99 default patches. Also many older units don't follow the GM standard.
That brings us to Instrument Definition files or Ins. Defs. Most current manufactures provide these files to import into sequencers such as Cake's apps. and Cake's also provides method to build your own. These Ins. Def. files make it so simple to choose an instrument such as SPD-20 for the track and a patch 10 Tex-Mex, 30 Drums & Synth etc. Now all the correct drum/instrument names are correctly displayed in the piano view as I described plus changing the patch will send the appropriate patch number to the external unit at any time. The same works for non drum patches in synths, changing the patch in Cake's track changes the patch to say, Trumpet & Trombone in the external module.
This saves enormous amounts of time and these files are very small and can be downloaded from the net so if someone walks in with a synth you can easily get the Ins. Defs., import and away you go with all the correct names for patches, banks and instruments ready to select in the app. Of course you wouldn't want to change the left pane of piano roll for a melodic instrument, for that you have to know the notes.
Excellent job Todd, It's killing me trying to think of the title for this tune, I know it and I may even have played it! Very unique rendition with orchestral instruments. I've checked out other nice tracks of yours which were also excellent (I think they were Rush tunes in strings?)
To be clear, I'm not proud of the track (nor much else at that site) I posted. I only did as the entire thing was scored by hand. Actually I was teaching my nephew how to write songs in Cakewalk manually since he's interested and plays no instruments.
Thanks MJ. That's what I meant by application. I actually don't like the view of the piano on the left anyways. I first saw this in cakewalk 5.0 and just thought it added unnecessary screen space. Studio Vision doesn't have this piano keyboard addition, it just has the notes written to the far left, which I prefer. More space for seeing the piano roll notes. So it sounds like you're basically able to label each key much like a scribble strip. I guess that's kind of nice if you're indeed using a keyboard. I don't like composing my drums on a keyboard and opted to get an Akai MPD16, to trigger my drums in my Akai sampler. I'll use this or if I want to sit down and play, I'll use my Yamaha electronic drum pads. So can I now turn the keys into drum pads and label the pads?
The thing about changing the patches, I've been doing this for years in Studio Vision. If there's not a list of patch names made for your keyboard you can make your own. I've actually done this for my Roland JV-90. Close to 500 patches of typing. I actually would probably have a hard time changing the patch without having my sequencer open, because I just haven't needed to press those buttons. So Acid doesn't let you select the Midi Port, and then a list of patches that you assign for that port becomes available? This is like the most important feature. All my sound modules and sampler are connected to a seperate midi port. When I select a track to record too, I select the port/sound module, and there is a seperate instrument box to select a patch.
>>>>So it sounds like you're basically able to label each key much like a scribble strip.<<<<
You could, but not directly on the "keyboard". You would build an Ins.def in the Instrument applet including all the banks, patches, note names etc. manually. I've had to for older modules like my Korg M3R. (TIP) Downloading the manual and copying and pasting all the patch names saves a ton of typing.
The Ins.def files from the mfg's of the devices saves all that, just import and it's all set up. That instrument is now always listed as a device and whenever you chose it all the info is ready from all tracks.
>>>>So can I now turn the keys into drum pads and label the pads?<<<<<
I do similar as you, I'm a drummer first and use the Roland SPD-20, it's the new Octapad with 700 onboard samples and 99 default patches. Each patch is a different kit setup and all the parameters, you can also set up your own.
So... I simply import the SPD-20 ins.def into Sonar > set up a MIDI track with the correct port and chose the SPD-20 as the instrument. Arm the track, play away. Now I can play back the recorded MIDI data and change patches in Sonar which will change the patches in the SPD-20 if I want. The list of patches in Sonar now are the correct names for the SPD-20. So if I record with a Jazz patch I can switch to Power etc. while listening to the changes.
Now if I left all the drums on that one channel and opened piano roll, all the correct individual drum names would be listed at the left for each corresponding line. These are samples so they are something like b03 Dry Hard Kick, b04 Meat Kick, b05 Pillow Kick, b06 Jazz Kick 1, b07 Jazz Kick 2, b08 Maple Kick on and on and on. Of course a patch would only have one kick, snare several toms HH and cymbals or percussion, synth, sound effects etc.
Then I would run the "Split notes to tracks" script and all the indevidual drums would be on their own track in a second.
>>>>So Acid doesn't let you select the Midi Port, and then a list of patches that you assign for that port becomes available?<<<<
Not for external gear that I know of. I let's you select a softsynth and then the patches are listed in the softsynth.
It's not about "not being able to get work done" or throwing out old equipment, it's about audio software being released in 2004 standing behind 1984 technology when something which is much more accurrate, efficient and fast becoming a standard is available!!!
It's not about "not being able to get work done" or throwing out old equipment, it's about audio software being released in 2004 standing behind 1984 technology when something which is much more accurrate, efficient and fast becoming a standard is available!!! Why would any developer have an attitude that the latest (and more accurately - future) industry standard is not something that is needed in a competitive world?? Why would a developer try to convince it's users to stick with the 20 year old technology??