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John Bradley

automation envelope stuff

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1) I'm taunted by Youtube videos of people using ProTools and other daws.  They can have an automation envelope active, select a region using one of the select tools, hover over the envelope in the selected region, and just drag it up and down, which inserts control handles and moves the part of the envelope in the selection all in one easy and intuitive operation. In CW you can right-click the envelope, choose Add Nodes At Selection and then you have to switch to the Move Tool to move the region up and down, and then switch back to the Smart Tool you were probably previously using.

It's clunky.

 

2) I almost exclusively use Jump transitions on my Automation, not Linear. Which means I spend a fair amount of time arguing with CW over the issue. Each time I click to add a node to the Automation envelope, it sets the part of the envelope to the left of the new point to Linear mode, even if it was already in a Jump 'region'. Each node addition requires a right-click context menu to set part of the envelope back to Jump. 

Some sort of Default mechanism - like remembering the last choice I made on said context menu and using that transition mode until I say differently - would be appreciated. 

 

3) Related: it should be possible to set the transition mode on multiple envelope segments at once. I can select multiple control points (and thus segments) simultaneously, but right-clicking and changing mode only effects the one segment I clicked on.

 

4) Better vertical precision on the control handles. Currently they're tied to the pixel height of the track (or Automation Lane). In my normal semi-expanded view of a track (say, 100px high or so), I can select a handle on a Volume envelope, hold shift to constrain the motion to vertical, and drag up or down. But because the track isn't displayed hugely, I can only move by .4db increments (or whatever), because that's what moving the handle up or down by a single pixel maps to. 

I'd like to request a "Precision Mode" similar to what happens when you hold shift and drag one of the Console faders - multiple pixels worth of motion map to a 0.1db change in the fader level, or whatever the smallest value change allowed happens to be for the given parameter.

 

5) Related to #4. It should also be possible to precisely nudge selected Automation handles using the keyboard (arrow keys plus some modifiers). Personally don't need it if I got #4, but I could see a case where arrow-key nudging would still be a nice feature. Reduced motor skills, trying to work a laptop touchpad in the back of a moving tour bus, whatever.

 

6) Orphaned Envelopes after you delete an effect that had automation. Why are they even a thing? They should probably show up as a lane when you show Automation Lanes, and also as a selection in the Automation flyout menu tied to the "Edit Filter" field (in both the parent track and the Automation Lanes, if shown).

 

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3 hours ago, John Bradley said:

1) I'm taunted by Youtube videos of people using ProTools and other daws.  They can have an automation envelope active, select a region using one of the select tools, hover over the envelope in the selected region, and just drag it up and down, which inserts control handles and moves the part of the envelope in the selection all in one easy and intuitive operation. In CW you can right-click the envelope, choose Add Nodes At Selection and then you have to switch to the Move Tool to move the region up and down, and then switch back to the Smart Tool you were probably previously using.

It's clunky.

It's practically the same in Cakewalk using the smart tool:

selectFromBottomDragFromTop.gif

 

 

3 hours ago, John Bradley said:

2) I almost exclusively use Jump transitions on my Automation, not Linear. Which means I spend a fair amount of time arguing with CW over the issue. Each time I click to add a node to the Automation envelope, it sets the part of the envelope to the left of the new point to Linear mode, even if it was already in a Jump 'region'. Each node addition requires a right-click context menu to set part of the envelope back to Jump. 

Some sort of Default mechanism - like remembering the last choice I made on said context menu and using that transition mode until I say differently - would be appreciated. 

 

3) Related: it should be possible to set the transition mode on multiple envelope segments at once. I can select multiple control points (and thus segments) simultaneously, but right-clicking and changing mode only effects the one segment I clicked on.

 

4) Better vertical precision on the control handles. Currently they're tied to the pixel height of the track (or Automation Lane). In my normal semi-expanded view of a track (say, 100px high or so), I can select a handle on a Volume envelope, hold shift to constrain the motion to vertical, and drag up or down. But because the track isn't displayed hugely, I can only move by .4db increments (or whatever), because that's what moving the handle up or down by a single pixel maps to. 

I'd like to request a "Precision Mode" similar to what happens when you hold shift and drag one of the Console faders - multiple pixels worth of motion map to a 0.1db change in the fader level, or whatever the smallest value change allowed happens to be for the given parameter.

Good ideas.. we'll take them under consideration.
 

3 hours ago, John Bradley said:

5) Related to #4. It should also be possible to precisely nudge selected Automation handles using the keyboard (arrow keys plus some modifiers). Personally don't need it if I got #4, but I could see a case where arrow-key nudging would still be a nice feature. Reduced motor skills, trying to work a laptop touchpad in the back of a moving tour bus, whatever.

You can already do this:
1. Select the range of nodes either by lasso, or by range by dragging along the bottom half
2. Switch numlock on, then use the numpad keys to perform the nudge as you would with clips.  On a laptop with no dedicated numpad, there should be a fn key to access the numpad keys.  7/8 are left/right nudge 1;  4/6 are left/right nudge 2; 1/3 are left/right nudge 3.  The amount of nudge is defined in preferences.

 

3 hours ago, John Bradley said:

6) Orphaned Envelopes after you delete an effect that had automation. Why are they even a thing? They should probably show up as a lane when you show Automation Lanes, and also as a selection in the Automation flyout menu tied to the "Edit Filter" field (in both the parent track and the Automation Lanes, if shown).

 


Orphaned envelopes are there so you don't lose all your hard work creating an envelope when you delete an effect, or when you delete the automation lane. 

For lanes that have been deleted, you can automatically get them back by holding down SHIFT when opening the automation lanes.
For ones that are truly orphaned because you deleted the underlying effect,  SHIFT click on the envelope shape to highlight it, then right click->Assign Envelope to reassign it, or right click->Delete Envelope to remove it permanently.



 

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23 minutes ago, msmcleod said:

It's practically the same in Cakewalk using the smart tool:

Indeed it is. That knowledge would've saved me hundreds of clicks over the years. I was expecting one of the tools to switch to something like that "region up-or-down" cursor when I was hovering over the envelope itself, not up by the titlebar of the clip.

Excellent!

 

27 minutes ago, msmcleod said:

You can already do this:
1. Select the range of nodes either by lasso, or by range by dragging along the bottom half
2. Switch numlock on, then use the numpad keys to perform the nudge as you would with clips.  On a laptop with no dedicated numpad, there should be a fn key to access the numpad keys.  7/8 are left/right nudge 1;  4/6 are left/right nudge 2; 1/3 are left/right nudge 3.  The amount of nudge is defined in preferences.

I'm hip to the keyboard nudge commands though I mostly use them in the PRV rather than on the automation envelopes. What I was actually asking about is the ability to nudge the handles up or down via the keyboard, which doesn't seem to be a thing.

Though I wouldn't be surprised if that's in there somewhere I've never noticed.

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Another great addition to this:

When the lanes are collapsed and all your envelopes sits infront on the clip - the ability to do cuts on a region is disabled. This make it impossible to do a quick cut for some comping or other form of edits. 

So if we can do some cuts when the envelopes sits infront and also gets cut with the clip - would be great. 

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9 hours ago, John Bradley said:

2) I almost exclusively use Jump transitions on my Automation, not Linear. Which means I spend a fair amount of time arguing with CW over the issue. Each time I click to add a node to the Automation envelope, it sets the part of the envelope to the left of the new point to Linear mode, even if it was already in a Jump 'region'. Each node addition requires a right-click context menu to set part of the envelope back to Jump. 

Some sort of Default mechanism - like remembering the last choice I made on said context menu and using that transition mode until I say differently - would be appreciated. 

 

3) Related: it should be possible to set the transition mode on multiple envelope segments at once. I can select multiple control points (and thus segments) simultaneously, but right-clicking and changing mode only effects the one segment I clicked on.

I'm down with these two, and have specifically requested the first one in the past. I also brought this up in a discussion about editing tempo envelopes recently that instantaneous changes should always be done with jump segments for simplicity and consistency. Mark's video showing four nodes being used for two changes is not a desirable default behavior in my view.

 

9 hours ago, John Bradley said:

I'd like to request a "Precision Mode" similar to what happens when you hold shift and drag one of the Console faders - multiple pixels worth of motion map to a 0.1db change in the fader level, or whatever the smallest value change allowed happens to be for the given parameter.

My OCD self says. "Yeah, that would be nice", but my rational self says, "Don't bother, few people can reliably discern anything less than a 1dB change anyway"

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