Jump to content
Joe Dun

Make Cakewalk easy

Recommended Posts

The larger drag hot spot is on the left side of the track header but it also extends on a line under the name and buttons to the right of the name

DnnUMvm.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, Joe Dun said:

Though, the target area is pretty small to get that double-arrow.

That it is.

I believe it has to be because of the widget placement. Its a tight area to begin with.. but the hit zone is small.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Since I don't normally expand the track view, the drag area is non-existent.  Personally, I would have set the track number itself as the area to drag. And since the smaller track size is default, the user manuals should state that the track must be made larger than default, to be able to drag it.  I sort of wonder if the drag area is actually was advertisement programmed to what it is now.  I.e. a bug.

-Joe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Joe Dun said:

Since I don't normally expand the track view, the drag area is non-existent.  Personally, I would have set the track number itself as the area to drag. And since the smaller track size is default, the user manuals should state that the track must be made larger than default, to be able to drag it.  I sort of wonder if the drag area is actually was advertisement programmed to what it is now.  I.e. a bug.

-Joe

Well, my suggestion was just to test whether or not that was the issue preventing the detection of the mouse as positioned in the area that allows for dragging to move that track.  I don't happen to have that issue, and literally just a moment ago, started a brand new project with one of the default project templates that comes with Cakewalk, and it happens to have a number of tracks already present as part of the template.

Without my expanding that area of the track to see if that made a difference in it detecting that the mouse should be in an area where dragging the track is permissible, as soon as my mouse was positioned just to the right of the box containing the track name, sure enough, the double-arrow appeared, and I was able to drag that track to a different position, above or below where it had been.

SO - on my system, the default project template sizing of that track parameter area's width was absolutely wide enough - to start with - where I could drag the track up or down.  That would indicate that some other issue is at play, on YOUR system.  Perhaps it is a screen resolution thing - or text-size issue, or something like that, which is why I was just curious as to whether or not that made any difference on your system, to help narrow down why it doesn't seem to behave as expected.  I was just hoping you would see if slightly expanding that track parameter area, horizontally, would work, and help diagnose what might be at play in it not seeming to work at the default width setting.

The track number doesn't seem like it would work for the area to support detection for the 'drag area', because that is already used for performing quick grouping of multiple tracks, and for selection of individual tracks.  Once some kind of determination can be made as to what needs to happen for that to start working on your system, then that info can be passed along to the Cakewalk developers, to either tweak something, or perhaps add some additional info to the documentation, or both, etc....

Bob Bone

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, scook said:

The larger drag hot spot is on the left side of the track header but it also extends on a line under the name and buttons to the right of the name

DnnUMvm.gif

I don't ever expand the tracks vertically like that - drives me nuts.  If you start with the tracks in their collapsed vertical state, the area I meant to describe, is just to the right of the Input Echo On button.  I had INCORRECTLY said the area was immediately to the right of the track name.

SO - please perhaps collapse the tracks, and show the same mouse positioning using the area just to the right of the Input Echo button, and repost.  You are much better at putting those animated clips together.  Thanks, @scook.

And, @Joe Dun, apologies for directing you to the wrong spot to look for that double-arrow, and for not being clear enough in my earlier comments.

Bob Bone

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So, in my horrifically poor picture below, I meant to say, try the area under my rather wobbly red parrot-headed circle, this is the area I always use, to get the double-arrow to show up, allowing me to drag a track up or down.

 

1711457415_TrackMoveDetectionArea.PNG.a47cffac61c896298c96bcb1f016435e.PNG

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perhaps it would also be nice to have a picture with arrows pointing out the various target areas for where to position the mouse to get the double-arrow to show up, added to the documentation on moving tracks.  I am always in favor of making documentation better, when things can be confusing.

Bob Bone

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, Robert Bone said:

SO - please perhaps collapse the tracks, and show the same mouse positioning using the area just to the right of the Input Echo button, and repost.  You are much better at putting those animated clips together.  Thanks,

rflau0p.gif

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, scook said:

rflau0p.gif

Yup, just LOOK at all that room!  Wahoo!  THAT is how I move tracks around.  Works every time.  THANK YOU, Sir! - I suppose my wobbly red parrot-headed circle just didn't do it for you..... :)

Bob Bone

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Turning things on and off would only add another layer of complexity.

Like how Cakewalk's default state has track inputs and outputs hidden. Many people have quit trying to use Cakewalk because they cannot figure out how to link their mic or midi controller to a track because it is "hidden".

Face it, making music is not easy, Cakewalk makes a very difficult thing easier.

Back when I had to use reel to reels, FSK and SMPTE time code, giant mixers and racks and racks of effects with a mass of cords and connectors... now, that was not a cakewalk. Labeling mixer tracks with masking tape...

Grandmothers learn to use Adobe Premiere to make slideshows of their grandchildren.

Cakewalk is the easiest DAW to use as it is, I suggest not making it any harder by hiding vital functionality.

It just looks daunting.

Try studying a schematic for a mixer and see if Cakewalk is not easier, no cords or midi/audio cables. VSTs are all built in, all the effects you could ever need on each track.

People today have it so easy, and if that is still too hard, well, maybe they need to simply try harder to learn it.

Midi synths versus having to actually learn to play many instruments?

Again, people have it easy today.

YouTube is full of tutorials...

Cakewalk needs more function, not less.  Many different ways to do the same thing; staff view, piano roll or simply recording on the fly, etc...

I personally never use console view.

Edited by RexRed
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It should be noted that the OP has stated that he just wants to use CbB to edit a few pre made midi files to set some music to his puppet shows. He does not seem to be a musician, or be interested in learning more than what is strictly needed to perform a very simple task. He has stated that he has had Cakewalk in several versions for fifteen years but even so he does not seem to understand things like the difference between MIDI file types 0 and 1, or very basic interface navigation that has not really changed for years, so I would not say that he is a beginner, or a new user, rather someone who wants to occasionally use a complex tool without spending too much time to learn it.

Maybe what he actually needs is to find a musician to help him with the music side of his shows. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/21/2019 at 6:12 AM, JoseC said:

It should be noted that the OP has stated that he just wants to use CbB to edit a few pre made midi files to set some music to his puppet shows. He does not seem to be a musician, or be interested in learning more than what is strictly needed to perform a very simple task. He has stated that he has had Cakewalk in several versions for fifteen years but even so he does not seem to understand things like the difference between MIDI file types 0 and 1, or very basic interface navigation that has not really changed for years, so I would not say that he is a beginner, or a new user, rather someone who wants to occasionally use a complex tool without spending too much time to learn it.

Maybe what he actually needs is to find a musician to help him with the music side of his shows. 

That's what I was talking about up thread.

Yes, these things haven't changed for years... but they're still clunky.  The fact that you have gotten accustomed to it through years of use doesn't change that.  It only makes it difficult for you to empathize with new users who are encountering it for the first time.

IMO, these new users are probably the best thing to happen to Cakewalk, because they will dare to give feedback on these areas.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/21/2019 at 6:12 AM, JoseC said:

Maybe what he actually needs is to find a musician to help him with the music side of his shows. 

I have asked some, who do use keyboards, about some help or advice with Cakewalk, but they don't use Cakewalk.  I am guessing that the name does not attract more advanced users, and they go to other software considered more professional.

I am glad the drag-to-reorder discuss was started, because that is the type of thing that no amount of time in the user manual, or tutorials will teach you.  And initially, even with the extra help, my conclusion was that the feature is simply not working properly on my computer.  It took quite a lot of effort on both myself, and others, to finally drill down to the root cause. I.e. the active area is not normally available until you expand the tracks.

Once a person runs into a few of these types of issues, you tend to want to give up.  This is my history with Cakewalk.  I try to start afresh, and put some hours into it, then run into too many barriers that I can't get past.  It is also likely that as a semi-experienced user, I would tent to gloss over the beignner tutorials, because I felt I had already learned those things. But, because these periods of time are so spread out, I forget some of the things.

The Midi 0 vs 1 is something I used to know, but had forgotten about until it was mentioned here.  So, I am in many ways a novice.

-Joe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The opening post and support for it is from what I call a spoon fed mentality. In the mid 1990s, I became aware of MIDI music production. My first venture into MIDI sequencing was with a Yamaha QY10 hardware sequencer. I had no knowledge whatsoever on how the thing worked and much less about MIDI. It came with a manual which I read from beginning to end and also went out and bought a 255 page book titled "MIDI For The Professional." Although the QY10 had its own built in tone generator, I wanted more sounds, so I Iearnt how to hook it up to an outboard sound module and keyboard using MIDI cables. I began making music with the equipment I had from the knowledge I gained from reading. At the end of the 1990s I got my first computer and installed my first DAW which was ProTools free on Windows. Again, I had to read the help file on how to record audio and input midi data into the program. ProTools free was very limited and I wanted more. Then I came upon Cakewalk's Home Studio 2002 which introduced me to virtual instruments. Yet again, I read the help files and followed the tutorials to get up and running and thus created music with the program. I have been with Cakewalk all through the years right up to the present and never found any part of the program clunky to use. Whenever new features are added or changes made, I thoroughly read up on them or watch available video tutorials. Additionally, this forum has very helpful members willing to help with technical problems that may arise. I don't use all the features in Cakewalk by BandLab  like the matrix and step sequencer. At this present time, I'm very comfortable with the program allowing me to create good music and have no desire to look at another DAW. 

Edited by DeBro
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, there are LOTS of folks in the forums, who routinely try to work with folks that are struggling to understand how to 'do' things in Cakewalk.  Sometimes, providing a link to the appropriate documentation is helpful, while sometimes, a bit more effort is involved.

Zero help can be provided, until someone posts their struggles in one of the forums.  Once that DOES happen, there are folks that will do their best to assist.

Cakewalk developers made a monumental change in the user interface design, beginning with Sonar X1, and that continues to this day.  They actively do look through feedback and feature requests, and try to make things easier to use, while also improving the product with new features.  The 3rd component of the process is maintenance - fixing bugs.

To the original poster - by all means post threads that detail things that you struggle with, and I think you will find a general sense of folks helping folks here.  I would suggest that you find some kind of way to write notes or perhaps shoot quick phone videos or whatever works, to keep track of things that you learn how to do, so when you later forget, you have some way of refreshing your memory of how to do that task.

Bob Bone

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/22/2019 at 8:18 PM, DeBro said:

The opening post and support for it is from what I call a spoon fed mentality.

Hey, this is the Feedback Section.

So if I say that your response comes from a "macho, shaming mentality," and you say that my "mentality" is "defensive" we can start throwing things, but how is attacking each others' "mentalities" constructive or helpful? 😄

Yes, it's great that you started with hardware sequencers and bought books and studied, so did I, at one point I had a QY70 (just recently sold it), but not everyone has the time, need, inclination, or concentration to do that. This guy just wants to make a marionette show with a synchronized backing track every so often.

The OP had a suggestion that there could be a simplified version of Cakewalk for people with simpler uses for the software. This is a valid suggestion, and it is a fact that there are just such programs on the market. Cakewalk Inc. marketed such software. I think I remember reading that the Lens feature was created to make it easier to market simplified versions and was later expanded for the use of hiding features that were not pertinent to the user's task at hand.

Logic Pro X has two modes, for basic and advanced use, this is a common thing in highly complex software.

For all my ability to dive in and tweak values of MIDI parameters and all that, it's sometimes really valuable to have a tool that when I come up with a beat on the drums that I want to enter quickly into the DAW, I can run over and get right to it without much ado before I forget it.

I don't see it as "spoon-feeding" more like acknowledging that Cakewalk is such a huge versatile beast that in some cases it will  be convenient to tailor it for entirely different uses.

And from a creativity standpoint, there can be something to be said for having an uncluttered workspace with fewer distractions.

I started with SplatWalk at the first BandLab release, having already been recording with other DAW's and physical hardware for quite some time and found the learning curve quite steep, and not a small part of that was due to the depth. So many menus! Also, the Reference Guide was but a twinkle in the eye at that point.

Edited by Starship Krupa
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Today I had a thought about a new support option.  It is common for computer support folks to do their work remotely via something like Netmeeting. It works quite well, and permits an expert to solve a problem very quickly.  The main drawback is that it permits the remote support guy to have total control over the computer of the person being helped.  So, a high level of trust is needed.

I wonder if some sort of limited "share my Cakewalk App" thing that could be created, and would permit an expert to see and change just the Cakewalk program, but not full access to the operating system. It may not be something that BandLab would offer directly. But, if there were some sort of mode that would permit a user to get remote help, that would facilitate a much easier way to troubleshoot.

The troubleshooter might be a volunteer, or paid support situation. And perhaps the remote support process doesn't involve BandLab at all, other than building this remote-support option into the software.

-Joe

Edited by Joe Dun

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Starship Krupa - Yup, the OP provided his feedback - and in the course of discussion, seems to have also either learned or relearned about moving tracks around, so all to the good.

Feedback is indeed what this forum is for - giving input to the Cakewalk folks on how folks feel about the product, or particular features, etc., ya know - feedback.  :)

Bob Bone

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...