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TheOtherSide

Beware importing midi - a warning!

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I'm relatively new to Cakewalk (by Bandlab or otherwise). Now, I had a midi project saved in another DAW and wanted to get it into CbB. I saved the project as midi (all tracks). Then I imported it into a new CbB project. Over the next several hours I became a quivering wreck! So many strange things happened that I almost started to rethink the menaing of life, let alone how to use a DAW. Anyway, to cut a very long story short, I ended up saving the original project as individual midi tracks, then importing them into CbB one by one. Order was restored. Now, there are 2 ways to look at this:

1. I should have just done this in the first place (the one by one midi files option). But how was I supposed to know an all-in-one midi file would cause so much havoc?

or

2. why does CbB let you import an all-in-one midi file in the first place if it's going to behave like a possessed harpy?

Anyway, I'm going to try to extract some good out of the whole affair, which is: I did end up learning a lot about CbB, and most of it good. And, yes, I indeed have become a supporter of it. It really is a very good DAW, albeit with a few peculiarities.

Hey ho until the next time. 🤭

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Funny you should mention that. I tried midi 0 at first, which was even more of a nightmare. Then I tried midi 1 - less chaotic but still painful. As I said, eventually ended up saving the tracks individually as midi 1.

I have a feeling that you're going to tell me something I wish I had known before the whole saga began!!

Edited by TheOtherSide

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You don’t need to import MIdI files. Sonar and CbB will natively open a MIDI file. Often that’s all it takes to clean up the crap fest that can sometimes occur on import. 

Just double click the file and it will either open or right click and select Open with>Sonar or CbB. 

I have CbB setup as the default program used to open MIDI files. All the best. 

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In most cases opening a MIDI file in CbB is preferable to importing the file. Importing MIDI strips tempo data. Once a file is opening in CbB make sure to save it as a Cakewalk project or any non-MIDI data that is added will be stripped and the file will be saved as a MIDI file.

Upon opening a MIDI file, if no MIDI output devices are selected in preferences, TTS-1 will automatically be added to the project and the project will be setup ready to play.

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+1 scook

Open the type 1 SMF... and immediately save it as a Cakewalk Project.

Often times, there are unwanted Tempo, Patch Changes, and Volume/Pan MIDI events.

I'd strip those out unless specifically desired.

Then, assign the individual MIDI tracks to specific virtual or hardware instruments.

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Thanks all... I'll give your suggestions a go... As I said, I'm all good now but doing it all over again with your suggestions should prove invaluable. I shall report back when done!

Edited by TheOtherSide

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If i use the browser and drag midi in to the track.

Would that be importing or opening the midifile?

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Dropping a file from the Browser or the OS onto an existing project imports the file.

Dropping a file into CbB from the OS onto the CbB background (IOW space not containing a project) opens the files.

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1 hour ago, Jim Roseberry said:

+1 scook

Open the type 1 SMF... and immediately save it as a Cakewalk Project.

Often times, there are unwanted Tempo, Patch Changes, and Volume/Pan MIDI events.

I'd strip those out unless specifically desired.

Then, assign the individual MIDI tracks to specific virtual or hardware instruments.

What's the best way to do this?  I've always started from a template with Kontakt loaded for several tracks. But when opening a midi file, nothing is loaded and I'd like to know the easiest way to assign each track to an instrument. I currently create a new track with the instrument and drag the midi clip from its original location. I'd rather find a way to assign the instrument to the original midi track.

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7 minutes ago, JCody said:

I currently create a new track with the instrument and drag the midi clip from its original location. I'd rather find a way to assign the instrument to the original midi track.

If you insert the new instrument as a simple instrument track, you can go back to any  MIDI track and set its output selector to the new instrument. In the case of multi-timbral instruments such as Kontakt, you can also assign the MIDI channel that you want that MIDI track to send to.

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1 minute ago, JCody said:

Thanks!

The limitation here is that a MIDI track can only send data to one destination. You might need to copy a MIDI clip to another track if you also wanted to send that data to a second instrument.

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16 minutes ago, JCody said:

What's the best way to do this?  I've always started from a template with Kontakt loaded for several tracks. But when opening a midi file, nothing is loaded and I'd like to know the easiest way to assign each track to an instrument. I currently create a new track with the instrument and drag the midi clip from its original location. I'd rather find a way to assign the instrument to the original midi track.

  • Add an instance of Kontakt (and load the desired sound/s)
  • Add an Audio Track
  • Assign the Audio Track to receive audio from that Kontakt instance (Input drop-down list)
  • Assign the MIDI track to output to the instance of Kontakt (Output drop-down list)

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This is from the old forum. http://forum.cakewalk.com/tm.aspx?m=2382979

Substitute Cakewalk for X1.  

 

First  insert Kontakt in the synth rack. A pop up dialog should appear. Here is where you configure how you want Kontakt to work in your project. Pay attention to multi outs. You will want to select All Synth Outputs.  Click OK and X1 will start making multiple audio tracks. 

Now you have Kontakt up and empty. No instruments are loaded. Toward the left top you will see a menu that has Files Libraries Database. Lets go to the database by clicking on it. You should see columns with type bank and timbre. For now select under type Piano/Keys. In the next column select Grand Piano. Look down below the database and you should see 3 pianos there. Select the last one which should be Grand Piano. You do this by double clicking on it. That instrument module will load. Now here is the hard part(not really)You should see the GP module with its name there near the top left. Just below it is output and just below that is the input. 

The input should match your MIDI tracks output. I will get to that in a moment. 

Be sure that the mixer is shown for Kontakt. There you will see some channel strips You add more if you need to up to the number of audio tracks you have created using that popup dialog that came up when you inserted Kontakt. Now you may need to set up the mixer for other channels. At the bottom the first channel will have 1/2 that is output 1 and 2.  Nest if don't see a output in numbers just plus click on it and a dialog will appear. Here you select another out from the list.  You do this for as many outs as you need. 

For the first module it is set up by default most likely the way you will want.  Now lets load another instrument module. Go back to the database and select organ. In the third column select vintage looking below Melotron Organ should be there. Double click on it and it will also load. Although the module is different the area above where the name is is the same as the piano the output will most likely be the first or channel 1. Change that to 2. Click on it and it will give you a drop down window that offers all the mixer channels setup in the mixer.  You want the second one or as above 2.

The MIDI channel should also be changed to 2 if it isn't already. 

Now you have Kontakt setup you need to go to your first MIDI track and select its output to Kontakt. The Inspector is a good place to go for this. If using the Inspector Go to the bottom of the inspector and select Kontakt.

Just below the FX bin you have 3 drop down widgets. The first sets the channel for Kontakt. The other 2 don't count with a soft sampler. They do with hardware.  

If there is data in the MIDI track then play X1 by hitting the play button. 

For the second MIDI track do everything the same except change the top channel widget to 2. 

Repeat as needed. 

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1 hour ago, abacab said:

The limitation here is that a MIDI track can only send data to one destination.

Not exactly. Drum maps can route each MIDI note number to a different output. It is possible to have up to 128 different output assignments in a MIDI track.

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3 hours ago, scook said:

Not exactly. Drum maps can route each MIDI note number to a different output. It is possible to have up to 128 different output assignments in a MIDI track.

Good to know scook! There are always many ways to do something in Cakewalk!

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OK - so I did as prescribed here and opened the midi file with CbB... not imported. This time, however, the tracks were all midi tracks - not instrument tracks. That might sound reasonable to you seasoned CbB guys but not ideal to me. Possibly (so far) the thing that baffles me the most about CbB is that I can't just drag and drop (or right click and add) an instraument onto a midi track to turn it into an instrument track. Anyway, like I already mentioned previously, if I need to add midi from another DAW again, I'll just save each track as an indvidual midi file and import separately into CbB, one track at a time, which, although is not ideal, at least works. Thanks for your suggestions.

UPDATE: it seems I didn't fully explain what I meant above. This is what I actually meant...

Possibly (so far) the thing that baffles me the most about CbB is that I can't just drag and drop (or right click and add) a VST instrument onto a midi track to turn it into an instrument track.

Edited by TheOtherSide

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6 hours ago, TheOtherSide said:

OK - so I did as prescribed here and opened the midi file with CbB... not imported. This time, however, the tracks were all midi tracks - not instrument tracks. That might sound reasonable to you seasoned CbB guys but not ideal to me. Possibly (so far) the thing that baffles me the most about CbB is that I can't just drag and drop (or right click and add) an instraument onto a midi track to turn it into an instrument track. Anyway, like I already mentioned previously, if I need to add midi from another DAW again, I'll just save each track as an indvidual midi file and import separately into CbB, one track at a time, which, although is not ideal, at least works. Thanks for your suggestions.

You could do this:

Add a track with TTS-1 or any other softsynth.

Highlight all your miditracks by leftclicking on the track number and drag your mouse over the rest of the miditracks numbers.

As they are highlighted hold down ctrl and choose your softsynth in the output list of one miditrack. That will change all of the outputs. And you're ready to go.

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