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  #1  
Old 08-10-2002, 10:51 AM
cydonia cydonia is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 24
Default Midie Newbie with newbie questions.

Hey. Jespe helped me in another thread monitor my midi tracks thru my computer speakers using an auxillary track.

My questions now are, how do i "record" the midi sounds into the computer and play them back without having my keyboard on? I thought the good thing about midi was you could have more midi tracks than audio tracks. I was also under the impression midi had no latency. But in another site someone told me to create an audio track for each midi track, doesn't that just use all the tracks up anyway? Why not just use audio tracks to begin with? I only have 8 tracks with Pro Tools Free.

I make synth music, techno type stuff. Obviously i'm looking for precision and high quality sound, and multiple tracks. This is why i bought my midiman midisport to begin with.

I'm used to a 4-track cassette, where it's plug and play (and there's no latency). I can do that with pro tools free using audio tracks, am i just making it harder on myself trying to use midi?
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  #2  
Old 08-10-2002, 03:14 PM
Bastiaan Bastiaan is offline
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Location: Nederland
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Default Re: Midie Newbie with newbie questions.

Hey cydonia,

Nice to see you're still in a learning-curve [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img]

I am not really a midi-whizz, so i am not that good use for you now...

but...

Using midi is a very good thing, since it will give the ability to be very flexible. You can tweak and perfect your music, while listening to the end-result. And thats a great thing...

I just came by to help you remember something StoneKnife said. He said that you shouldnt spend to much money on your ptfree-setup. Remember that a used amIII-card is around $200, and that will give you 32 tracks of audio....and then there's the m-box($450 new), and the digi001($800 new, around $600 used). Just keep that in mind...
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- That's the machine that goes "pling".


Bastiaan
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  #3  
Old 08-10-2002, 09:04 PM
cydonia cydonia is offline
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Default Re: Midie Newbie with newbie questions.

Thanks, maybe i'll look around for that auido3 card. I've been hesitant to buy something online though. Must research.
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  #4  
Old 08-11-2002, 12:04 AM
jackruston jackruston is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Wimbledon UK
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Default Re: Midie Newbie with newbie questions.

Hi
Midi is just a stream of numbers. A code that talks to synths. It tells the synth which note to play, how hard, when, with sustain or not, etc etc etc. There are lots of parameters. A typical midi chain worls like this.

You play your keyboard. Numbers go into the computer and are recorded, while also coming straight back out and into the keyboards sound module section. Effectively the keys of the keyboard are no longer directly linked to the sound module section because you have turned local control off. (If you did not do this, everything would be doubled, giving a nasty flaming effect) In short, you have stuck the computer sequencer in the way. When you then play back the track, the numbers are spat back out to the keyboard, which plays them as if you were playing it yourself. This does introduce a small amount of latency. Dont worry too much about it.

So, your midi tracks are just recorded numbers that take up very very little space. The files are tiny and the task of spitting these numbers back out of the interface to the synth is pathetically easy for todays computers. If you have available midi modules and enough ports on your interface, you can have a lot of tracks. An 8 out midi interface can play back 128 tracks. (16 per midi cable). If you want to hear this stuff, the modules need to be on, set to the desired patches, and monitored somehow...That could be in protools on an auxiliary input channel, or connected to a mixing desk or dat recorder etc. You can even just plug in a pair of cans.

As all this stuff is just numbers, we can edit it very easily. Changing pitch, tempo etc etc are a doddle. This is the true advantage of midi.

Audio files by comparison are enormous. They take a great deal of horsepower to stream off the disk, which limits the total number available. They have the advantage of being able to play back without the help of external gear. Editing audio has become increasingly easy over the years, but is still nowhere near as easy and flexible as midi editing.

So why print to audio. When you are satisfied with the tempo and performance of your midi tracks, it can be useful to print them to audio. Why
1. Midi timing can be a little erratic. Audio is audio
2. You dont need to keep the synths on.
3. You can free a synth up to do a different part.
4. You can apply plug in effects to the audio
5. If you ever come to remix the track, you may not have the same synths available.

etc

To perform this 'printing' solo each track in turn...Have the synth output coming into your pro tools on an audio channel. Record the synth playback. As you only have eight channels, you may need to group some midi tracks together to be recorded. This reduces your flexibility in mixing the audio, but saves space.

Good luck

Jack
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  #5  
Old 08-11-2002, 12:51 AM
cydonia cydonia is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2002
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Default Re: Midie Newbie with newbie questions.

Thanks jack for such a great informative post. I really appreciate it.

I can see i still have a lot to learn, and maybe some more gear to buy.
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  #6  
Old 08-11-2002, 02:24 AM
jackruston jackruston is offline
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Location: Wimbledon UK
Posts: 497
Default Re: Midie Newbie with newbie questions.

I agree...You are going to want a more powerful system at some stage.

It's a balance. You dont want to throw money at things you're not sure about, but at the same time, it's better to jump high when you do jump.
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