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Starship Krupa

Abandon all hope, ye who enter The Drum Map Manager

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7 hours ago, murat k. said:

The problem about Drum Maps is, we have to reassign Out Ports everytime only if we are not using a Project Template which we already have preassigned Out ports to the Synths. Even in that Project Template, when we delete a Synth, Drum Map's Out Port is changing. There should be a thing between the Drum Map and the Synth which makes the Out Port connection consistent. We are not having a trouble about Drum Maps. We are having a trouble to keep connection between the Synth and the Drum Map. 

The Out Port assignments of a drum map are set using the existing output routing for the MIDI track. If there is no routing, the DAW makes the assignment, if possible, to insure the data does somewhere. The same thing happens if a routing becomes invalid (ex. the synth in the Out Port assignments is deleted). 

Fortunately, should the assignment need changing, it can be done with a few keystrokes

  • SHIFT+select the range of mappings to change
  • CTRL+SHIFT+click the drop down to reassign the selected ports

Or, after adding the new synth

  • delete the old drum map,
  • make sure the track is routed to the new synth then
  • add a new drum map.

 

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Thank you for the information Steve, you always trying to be helpful but If we already did what you say, I mean after the assignment, if we delete a synth which is prior from the drum synth on the list of the Synth Rack on the project, the assignments of the Out Ports are all changing. It should be consistent. That's why we are having trouble with Drum Maps all the time. It seems to be that the information of the assignment to the related synth is not storing in the project file. It can be resolved by storing the Output Port assignments of Drum Maps per synth in the project. Also this information should be stored in the Project Templates and the Track Templates.

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It does not matter if adding a track template or adding the drum map to an existing project or project template. The Out Port assignments are all made following the same rule.

 

Out Ports in a drum map are dynamically assigned to the track based on the MIDI output it is replacing.

If there is no prior MIDI output assignment or the Out Port assignments become invalid, the DAW adjusts them so that the data has somewhere to go.

 

IOW, the design requires a valid Out Port assignment, if possible, in drum maps used by a project.

This is similar to the dynamic assignment of Omni when input echo is enabled on tracks that have no input assignment.

Could there be a different way to handle this...yes.

Is the current process inconsistent...no.

 

That said, there most definitely is room for improvement in how MIDI data routes and PRV note pane labels are created, maintained and applied to projects. AFAIK, this has been on the to-do list for some time.

 

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23 hours ago, Colin Nicholls said:

Because it is, and always has been, how you adjust both Project and General preferences. If you don't have a project open, you don't get all the possible options in the Preference dialog.

 

 

And no other DAW does it this way anymore.  A similar argument can be made by things like metronome and snap settings. This is similar to the horrible UX that Sibelius uses, where multiple options from the UI simply take you to different sections from the preferences menu, with you having some instances where you have two different options that bring you to the same place.

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38 minutes ago, scook said:

It does not matter if adding a track template or adding the drum map to an existing project or project template. The Out Port assignments are all made following the same rule.

I mentioned Project Templates and Track Templates for developers to see. Because each file type are storing information differently. For example Track Templates does not storing the color information of the folders. When they fix this this problem, it has to work in all file types in the Cakewalk.

44 minutes ago, scook said:

Could there be a different way to handle this...yes.

Each synth we loaded in the project file can have a unique variable. And the Out Port assignments can be routed to that variable. Once we assign the out ports, it can be saved into the project file, so that now it can work without being linked to the Drum Map file. I am telling about storing routed Drum Maps in the project file. This can stay us out of trouble.

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I feel like this is not disimilar to the sampler FR...there are 2 different "requirements" that are getting conflated and confused.

The existing Drum Maps in CbB are really "MIDI Output Mapping" - the fact that they can be used for drum mapping and drum note naming is almost coincidental - and as such (as @scook pointed out above) make sense to remain where they are, as part of the track settings.  Now having their UI improved is a different matter and probably one where we would all agree that improvments could be made (we'd probably argue about how of course :-)).  Remember that this feature comes from a time when multiple, external MIDI modules were often used to create a full drum kit (I had 2 Alesis D4s and a DM5 at one stage, so I've been there!), so is focused on that kind of setup.

Then there's the new requirement (as I understand it) to be easily able to set the names of notes in the PRV for a single drum soft-synth (be that dedicated or sampler based).  Mapping across ports and channels and notes is pretty much irrelevant and the Drum Maps are absolutely overkill - and not in the sensible place.

So I think this FR should be thought of in this context and trying to link it in with Drum Maps is a red herring.

Note that there is VST2 (and 3?) standard functionality for a soft-synth to expose note names to the host - very few do this, which is a pity (fxPansion BFD 1 and 2 do this - even for the DXi version of BFD 1! - as does Cakewalk's own Session Drummer 3, and even fxPansion's venerable DR-008 does, but I gather not many more do).

Edited by Kevin Perry
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On 12/28/2020 at 6:45 PM, scook said:

Is the current process inconsistent...no.

Let me clarify the problem, Steve. And I am telling the exact stages I use. 

1- I load the same soft synth, like Kontakt, let's say for 6 tracks.
2- I assign a drum map to the 5th Instrument Track and make the Out Port assignments to the 5th Kontakt synth.
3- I load the samples onto the 5th Kontakt Instrument. I play the notes. Everything seems working fine. 
4- I delete the 6th Kontakt Synth from the Synth Rack. And I play a note. No problem.
5- Then I delete a synth that is prior on the list. (1st, 2nd, 3rd, or 4th)
6- No sound. Because Out Port assignments are all changed.

This problem happened because I used the same synth and deleted the prior one.
That's why I said each synth we load into the project has a given unique variable. I mean a random name for each synth we loaded. Somehow if it conflicts when loading a track template for example, give a new name to the loaded synth. Of course, users will not see that name. But the program needs that kind of thing to work properly.
Now it seems that Drum Maps Out Port assignments work like they have some kind of order but we are changing that order by deleting a synth which is more than one in the project. 
 I tried the same action with renaming the Synths from the Synth Rack. It didn't make difference anyway. So the problem is not related to Synth names on the Synth Rack. 
When the Developers give a unique random value to each synth we loaded it into the project and also make the Drum Maps use these names for ordering. We will never have this kind of problem anymore.

9 hours ago, Kevin Perry said:

Mapping across ports and channels and notes is pretty much irrelevant and the Drum Maps are absolutely overkill - and not in the sensible place.

Mostly seeing Drum names is enough for me and I rarely use different output assignments for more than one synth on a Drum Map. So I agree with that. But there is a powerful tool we have and it needs to work without problem.

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As a side note, if you happen to save your track setup as a track preset with a drum map to go with it, that drum map is not loaded when you load your track preset. It just adds a new empty DM entry that you have to reload your preset.

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Therefore Drum Maps need to be stored on the project file routed with Synth. When they do that we will able to load Track Templates with already assigned Drum Map(s) on it.

Edited by murat k.

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17 hours ago, Kevin Perry said:

I feel like this is not disimilar to the sampler FR...there are 2 different "requirements" that are getting conflated and confused.

I mentioned this in passing earlier. There is even another way to get the drum names showing, which is to use alternate note names. Unfortunately just now that functionality is a bit broken inasmuch as applying those note names is not persistent across closing and opening the PRV. That's what led to this most recent match with the drum map demon.

The other DAW's I've used also put the two things under one feature called "drum maps." If you want to see your drum names in Mixcraft, you use a drum map. If you want to do the MIDI note and port remapping, you use a drum map for that, too.

I mostly just want to see instrument/note names, but of course I want to have the other part of the feature available. The instrument names part is why I think there should be access to the feature from the PRV/Drum Pane.

If all you want is to see the drum names, it can be a heck of a lot of bother to go through. All I wanted was drum names and I wound up with a spurious patch/bank message in there somewhere.

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1 hour ago, Starship Krupa said:

I mostly just want to see instrument/note names, but of course I want to have the other part of the feature available. The instrument names part is why I think there should be access to the feature from the PRV/Drum Pane.

If all you want is to see the drum names, it can be a heck of a lot of bother to go through. All I wanted was drum names and I wound up with a spurious patch/bank message in there somewhere.

This could all be avoided if drum synth plug-in developers added the appropriate information to their plug-ins.

There is an opcode available in the VST specs that provides for assigning names to notes. The old Cakewalk Session Drummer, the BFD series and now Sitala appear to be the only plug-ins whos developers bothered to do this.

Implemented this way the note names in the DAW are synced with the plug-in. Add a kit piece/swap out or rename a drum in the plug-in, refresh the DAW and the new names appear in the step sequencer and PRV Notes Pane no instrument file or drum map needed.

Since most plug-in developers choose not to add this feature it up to the DAW developers and users to work around the missing data.

If the goal is a better way for Cakewalk to associate instrument names with notes making alternate note names in the Notes pane persistent across sessions seems like a more direct solution - request logged some time ago.

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4 hours ago, scook said:

If the goal is a better way for Cakewalk to associate instrument names with notes making alternate note names in the Notes pane persistent across sessions seems like a more direct solution - request logged some time ago.

I think we need both. Because sometimes we need to change some drums order. Drum Grid Pane allows this like the Step Sequencer. Also sometimes I need to work in PRV  Notes pane to see other track's notes at the same time for better note alignment.

At now we have both already actually. We can use Drum Maps by staying careful and we can change note names from the Instrument file. Unfortunately, at now both are not user friendly at all. 

I tried to point at the problem. I hope developers will decide to fix it.

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17 hours ago, scook said:

If the goal is a better way for Cakewalk to associate instrument names with notes making alternate note names in the Notes pane persistent across sessions seems like a more direct solution - request logged some time ago.

This would be cool!

Additionally, I would like if there was the possibility to reduce the notes visible, because most often you do not need all drum notes and the ones used are too far from each other (always scrolling up and down needed)! This would also improve the working with other instruments, 'cos sometimes you have big gaps that you do not use.

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3 hours ago, marled said:

I would like if there was the possibility to reduce the notes visible,

Now we can do the same thing on the Drum Grid Pane but if we can do this in PRV Notes Pane, I guess it won't be necessary to switch between the Drum Grid Pane and the Notes Pane as often as now.

And if such a thing like this come out. We can reduce the notes visibilty by Scale. I mean we will able to see only notes belongs to the Scale like in Ableton.

Edited by murat k.

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I thought about all the talk we made here and 

- If we are not routing Out Port's to different synths. 
- But we need to change some drums orders and reduce the notes we see.
- Also we are using same synth and different drum presets. 

Changing Instrument definition will not solve out problem because we use different drums in the synth.
PRV Notes Pane will never be enough because we need a Drum Pane to change the orders and reduce the notes visibility.
But it also need to work in PRV Notes View to see the drum notes with all other notes.

Maybe we only need a thing like "Note Preset"

This will be a preset for per synth. You  can define default preset for selected synth and it will load automatically. 
It will be a drum map  and Instrument definition for loaded synth at the same time.
You won't need to assign out ports, it will Out Port only the Synth you selected.

Drum Maps have inconsistency. Out Port assignments are problem, I tried to explain here. And Instrument definitions are static. I mean it is not changing by preset, unless the synth makes the change for us automatically.

Maybe that kind of thing will solve our all problems.

 

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Thing is, I'm pretty much okay with how Drum Maps work once they're set up. The drum names show up over on the left, they don't disappear after you close the project, and unlike doing it the "note names" way, they don't usurp the note names for other MIDI tracks you may wish to edit.

It's the obscurity/hassle/complexity/uncertain results I'd like to see reduced.

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I get it. You say we need properly working Drum Maps before the innovations. I totally agree with that. Sometimes in the talk people are moving out of focus of the topic and "The Note Presets" seemed to me like that after reading your post. I think it would be cool by the way, maybe I'll make a FR for that someday with some visuals on it.

Edited by murat k.
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