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How do I keep MIDI IN data from going to multiple tracks?

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feijaifeijai Washington, DCPosts: 25

So here's the workflow. I want to select a track, hit record, record some stuff in from my controller. Then I stop, go to another track, hit record, record some stuff in from my controller while the first track is playing. This is a trivial task yet for the life of me I can't figure out how to get the Deluge to do it.

  1. Despite the fact that you're likely to have only one controller, the Deluge doesn't have a way to just set the controller globally.

  2. So it seems the way I have to set up a controller is per-track. Go into the synth clip for your track, press Audition and Learn and press a key on your controller. But now I want to record into a second track. ONCE AGAIN I have to go into that second clip, press Audition and Learn and press a key on the controller. I have to repeat this every single time?

  3. But that's not all! Because for reasons I cannot fathom, even if I have selected the second track clip, if I start recording, it will record into BOTH the first track and the second. So it seems that in order to record a new track, I always have to (1) go into any old track that was previously attached to the controller and UNLEARN it first, then then go back into the new track and LEARN it. Every single time?

Tell me that there's another way to do this. Surely this cannot be the expected workflow for arming and recording tracks.

Answers

  • 0
    feijaifeijai Washington, DCPosts: 25

    I understand that, though it doesn't appear to be documented, in song mode, you can also press learn + track + press a key to attach a keyboard to the track. But you still have to disconnect a track and attach a new one every single time you want to play into a new track, or else you'll play into multiple tracks simultaneously (why would anyone want to do such a thing?). Why isn't there just a simple record arming mechanism?

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    Too_MereToo_Mere Chicago, IL, USABeta Tester, Mentor Posts: 568

    There is somewhat of an arming mechanism in the arranger view. If you mute a track/instrument in the arranger it stops incoming MIDI from playing or recording notes on that track/instrument. Which applies in song mode.

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    feijaifeijai Washington, DCPosts: 25

    So muting a track will disarm it -- but as you know this is not particularly useful since usually the goal is to play along with tracks. Seriously -- the Deluge doesn't have a simple way to arm and disarm tracks?

    Here's how I would have imagined the Deluge would work:

    • There is a single "default" incoming controller MIDI channel (for notes) which you set.
    • You can customize the MIDI controller per-clip but by default it uses the "default" one.
    • When you go into a clip, all other clips are disarmed and it is armed to the controller you had previously assigned, or to the default one.
    • Kit clips are just like everything else -- each drum in the clip is automatically assigned to the next chromatic key on your keyboard.
    • When you go into song mode, clips are disarmed.

    Surely this would handle something like 99.5% of use cases, and is far far easier to use.

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    feijaifeijai Washington, DCPosts: 25

    I still get the feeling like there is some trick I'm missing: I have to be misunderstanding things, because as I understand them, the existing system is nuts.

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    Affectionate_Bee_781Affectionate_Bee_781 United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 80

    Well, you can assign/unassign a MIDI controller to a clip from song mode by holding LEARN + clip row. Might save you a bit of time (if you haven't already figured that out ;) ).

    The Deluge system is a bit different than others (say Elektron) but is actually quite flexible. Do you have the ability to quickly change MIDI channel on your controller? If so, you can assign a different channel to each clip and then change them from your controller.

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    feijaifeijai Washington, DCPosts: 25

    I'm sure the #1 most common need here is to select a new clip and start recording into it. So you'd need to arm a brand new clip and disarm the others. So using the undocumented trick at the song mode level, it still looks like you'd have to do this: (1) enter a new clip to create it (2) go BACK to song mode (3) arm the clip in song mode (4) disarm the old clip (5) optionally go BACK into the clip (6) record.

    Seriously? That's how you record into a new clip?

    Recording into a track is a massively common need. One would imagine that arming and recording into a track would be as simple as just selecting and entering its clip. One button press, rather than about 8 button and key presses.

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    Too_MereToo_Mere Chicago, IL, USABeta Tester, Mentor Posts: 568

    @feijai said:
    So muting a track will disarm it -- but as you know this is not particularly useful since usually the goal is to play along with tracks. Seriously -- the Deluge doesn't have a simple way to arm and disarm tracks?

    Here's how I would have imagined the Deluge would work:

    • There is a single "default" incoming controller MIDI channel (for notes) which you set.
    • You can customize the MIDI controller per-clip but by default it uses the "default" one.
    • When you go into a clip, all other clips are disarmed and it is armed to the controller you had previously assigned, or to the default one.
    • Kit clips are just like everything else -- each drum in the clip is automatically assigned to the next chromatic key on your keyboard.
    • When you go into song mode, clips are disarmed.

    Surely this would handle something like 99.5% of use cases, and is far far easier to use.

    I think you misunderstood me. I was talking about using the mutes in arranger view, not song view. Press song button until it flashes to get to arranger view. If you use those mutes, it stops incoming MIDI sent by your controller from playing different sounds. But any different clips in song view can still be played.

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    feijaifeijai Washington, DCPosts: 25

    Yeah, I'm afraid that's not helpful: it's not part of a recording workflow.

    So I'm finding this pretty incredible that the Deluge doesn't have any sane way to connect a controller and record multiple tracks in song mode. It requires an incredible, frankly unbelievable number of button presses, double checks, and controller key presses just to arm a new track.

    If this is really how the Deluge does it, this mistake is an amazing show-stopper. It's a profoundly bad design error; it makes the Deluge largely useless for multi-track MIDI recording, something which I would imagine would be in the top 5 most common uses for a device of this kind. I would strongly urge the Deluge team to completely rethink how they handle incoming MIDI from a controller.

    • Allow the user to specify a default controller.
    • For a given track, the user can change the controller from the given default using the Deluge's crazy learn-button combination.
    • A track is automatically armed, and other tracks disarmed, when it is entered in clip mode unless the user does some crazy button combination.
    • Drum tracks have all their notes automatically set to chromatic or white-key sequences from the controller.

    What a mess.

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    LegsMechanicalLegsMechanical United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 36

    Midi learn works in a channel per PRESET scheme, right? (Not per row) As long as you’re using separate channels for each preset, you can control 16 different sounds across multiple rows just by switching the channel in your controller (and without worrying about arm/disarm, etc.).

    That’s all to say that incoming midi isn’t quite the disaster it’s being made out to be. It’s definitely not ideal, especially given that too many modern controllers make switching channels a pain (or don’t even support them absent an editor), but it’s certainly workable and not patently unreasonable.

    Still, an Omni mode like that present on most other multitimbral instruments would be a godsend for my workflow.

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    Too_MereToo_Mere Chicago, IL, USABeta Tester, Mentor Posts: 568

    @LegsMechanical said:
    Midi learn works in a channel per PRESET scheme, right? (Not per row) As long as you’re using separate channels for each preset, you can control 16 different sounds across multiple rows just by switching the channel in your controller (and without worrying about arm/disarm, etc.).

    Yes, this is what I often do. Especially for live performance. And many times I will map sounds from multiple kits to a single MIDI channel on my Launchpad.

    @feijai said:
    Yeah, I'm afraid that's not helpful: it's not part of a recording workflow.

    Not sure what you mean by this. If you’re recording and want to disarm an instrument, you can mute it in the arranger. Fairly quickly.

    • For a given track, the user can change the controller from the given default using the Deluge's crazy learn-button combination.
    • A track is automatically armed, and other tracks disarmed, when it is entered in clip mode unless the user does some crazy button combination.
    • Drum tracks have all their notes automatically set to chromatic or white-key sequences from the controller.

    What a mess.

    In most live situations, I have my MIDI controller mapped to a different instrument(s) than the one open on on the Deluge. It can helpful to have access to multiple instruments at once.

    For recording purposes, you can just learn and unlearn on a track by track basis, have templates setup, mute arranger tracks of instruments not being used, or switch MIDI channels on your controller.
    This hasn’t stopped me from making music on the Deluge :)

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    phillipadsmithphillipadsmith United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 67

    @feijai said:
    Tell me that there's another way to do this. Surely this cannot be the expected workflow for arming and recording tracks.

    What MIDI controller are you using?

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    feijaifeijai Washington, DCPosts: 25

    @phillipadsmith said:

    @feijai said:

    What MIDI controller are you using?

    A variety of keyboards, including one which can't change its MIDI channel. Why is this relevant?

    @phillipadsmith said:
    Not sure what you mean by this. If you’re recording and want to disarm an instrument, you can mute it in the arranger. Fairly quickly.

    Again, I'm in song mode, creating new tracks. I'm not in the arranger.

    In most live situations, I have my MIDI controller mapped to a different instrument(s) than the one open on on the Deluge. It can helpful to have access to multiple instruments at once.

    Fine, but it's that's a rare task. Rare tasks shouldn't made the common tasks highly convoluted to do, right? The general rule of a good UI is that it make the common tasks easy and the rare tasks possible. As far as I can tell, the Deluge seriously broke this.

    For recording purposes, you can just learn and unlearn on a track by track basis, have templates setup, mute arranger tracks of instruments not being used, or switch MIDI channels on your controller.
    This hasn’t stopped me from making music on the Deluge :)

    I'll be honest: it has completely stopped me. I use other tools because the Deluge is so convoluted in this respect. :-(

    I think that I've got my answer: the Deluge has no sane way to arm and disarm tracks in order to record new ones in song mode even though this is a very, very, very common task**. For a $1K groovebox, that's a huge hole. I came here assuming I was doing something wrong, but nope, it really is that bad. ;-( :-(

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    Too_MereToo_Mere Chicago, IL, USABeta Tester, Mentor Posts: 568

    @feijai said:

    Again, I'm in song mode, creating new tracks. I'm not in the arranger.

    Have you tried? It takes a single button press to get to the arranger from song mode. It won’t stop loops or anything. Just mute the track in arranger then jump back to song mode. Takes literally a few seconds.

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    phillipadsmithphillipadsmith United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 67

    @feijai said:

    @phillipadsmith said:

    @feijai said:

    What MIDI controller are you using?

    A variety of keyboards, including one which can't change its MIDI channel. Why is this relevant?

    Just trying to understand your set-up so I can possibly help.

    I believe this has already be shared above, but using a MIDI controller than can change MIDI channel achieves what you've described (as far as I can interpret).

    I have a template with all of my hardware already MIDI mapped. I set my controller to channel 1 and hit record and play. I play four bars, then hit the record button again and it loops the MIDI controlling the external synth.

    I change to MIDI channel 2. I hit the record button, I play in another four bars on a different synth, hit record again and it loops (again, sending MIDI out to my external hardware).

    What am I not understanding about what you want to achieve? Just trying to help here, like everyone who's taking the time to reply to you, no judgement here.

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    rezareza los angelesBeta Tester Posts: 97
    edited September 2021

    you might need to review the manual (chapter 9.6) or a tutorial some more (this one is good, although a lot of information at once so it's good to pause and take it a few steps at a time)

    your whole issue about going into clips to learn midi, then backing out, for each track is a moot point when you now know that you can hold learn/input + a clips' row to do it from song view. super quick, easy to do with one hand. if you remember, that was one of the main issues you had when you first started this thread and self addressed right afterwards.

    your other point, originally stated in the top of the thread, was with accidently recording onto multiple tracks. this is also easily addressed by unlearning and learning from song view between recordings. if you are using one keyboard, especially with one that can't change midi channels, this function is going to be the friend you will have to get acquainted with. also, correct me if i'm wrong, but after you record into a clip it should be disarmed automatically.

    BUT if you still have issues with multiple clips unintentionally recording, there is another step you can easily access in song view. when you hold record in song view, the clips' audition pads will blink to signify their arming state. make sure everything is off (green) for what you don't want to record. blinking red or magenta means they are armed.

    with those things in your arsenal you shouldn't be pulling your hair out, but it does take time to commit it to memory.

    with your other thoughts mentioned in the thread about the complexity of simply recording a track: you don't have to enter into clip view to make one then back out back to song view. you just press an empty row in song view (hold it down and press synth, kit, midi, etc to change the type while still in song view). you don't have to arm a newly created clip, it's already armed. just disarm the ones you don't need (but even then, clips disarm themselves once they've been recorded into). also you don't need to jump back into the clip view to record it, i tend to do all my recording from song view when working with midi and audio clips.

    Post edited by reza on
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    Too_MereToo_Mere Chicago, IL, USABeta Tester, Mentor Posts: 568

    @reza said:

    also, correct me if i'm wrong, but after you record into a clip it should be disarmed automatically.

    When you close the loop it will stop recording. But if you try to record additional instruments from the same MIDI channel without unlearning the first, it will still record notes into that first clip.

    BUT if you still have issues with multiple clips unintentionally recording, there is another step you can easily access in song view. when you hold record in song view, the clips' audition pads will blink to signify their arming state. make sure everything is off (green) for what you don't want to record. blinking red or magenta means they are armed.

    Those armed states for instrument clips indicate whether or not the clip will auto extend if empty. Either dim green or flashing red. Both will still record new notes if unmuted.

    This is why I suggested muting incoming MIDI from the arranger to avoid unlearning. But learning and unlearning from song view is a good tip and quick too!

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    phillipadsmithphillipadsmith United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 67

    @Too_Mere said:

    Those armed states for instrument clips indicate whether or not the clip will auto extend if empty. Either dim green or flashing red. Both will still record new notes if unmuted.

    I've never totally gotten my head around this part @Too_Mere! Can you say more?

    Does that mean if I have these clips set correctly, I don't need to worry about hitting the record button right before the 4-bar mark?

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    Too_MereToo_Mere Chicago, IL, USABeta Tester, Mentor Posts: 568

    @phillipadsmith said:

    I've never totally gotten my head around this part @Too_Mere! Can you say more?

    Does that mean if I have these clips set correctly, I don't need to worry about hitting the record button right before the 4-bar mark?

    So for an instrument clip to auto extend while recording it must:
    1. Be armed flashing red (it is by default)
    2. Be empty
    AND
    3. Be launched from muted while playback and record are enabled OR be unmuted (green launch button) when pressing play while record is enabled.

    Changing the armed status of a clip or not meeting the other two requirements will prevent auto extending, keeping the clip its original length when recording.

    As far as timing out launching the clip for recording, this has more to do with the size of the new empty clip. If it’s created at 16th zoom level, it’ll start as a one measure clip and recording will begin at the next downbeat. If the clip is created at 4th zoom level, it’ll start as a four measure clip and will wait until the 4 bars have passed before recording. And it’ll wait for a multiple of 4 bars to close the loop as well.

    Audio clips on the other hand, will not record if not flashing armed. And the two armed states instead indicate overdub behavior.

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    phillipadsmithphillipadsmith United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 67

    @Too_Mere said:

    So for an instrument clip to auto extend while recording it must:
    1. Be armed flashing red (it is by default)
    2. Be empty
    AND
    3. Be launched from muted while playback and record are enabled OR be unmuted (green launch button) when pressing play while record is enabled.

    Audio clips on the other hand, will not record if not flashing armed. And the two armed states instead indicate overdub behavior.

    This is super helpful. Thank you!

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    feijaifeijai Washington, DCPosts: 25

    @reza said:
    you might need to review the manual (chapter 9.6) or a tutorial some more[

    Thanks for the patroniz, but I've gone through the documentation quite a lot.

    your whole issue about going into clips to learn midi, then backing out, for each track is a moot point when you now know that you can hold learn/input + a clips' row to do it from song view.

    Nope. You can only do that for existing clips. Which is a pretty minor need. It doesn't matter to me that you can go back to a previous track in song mode and re-arm it with an undocumented button press combination: as I have said in the past, I want to lay down multiple BRAND NEW tracks.

    Here's what I want to do. I want to build a song, in song mode, by repeatedly laying down MIDI tracks. On a sane sequencer you'd do it like this:

    FIRST, tell the sequencer what your controller MIDI channel is. Once, done and done.

    1. Select and enter a new track (one button press). This would automatically arm it and disarm the others.
    2. Record the MIDI data: one button press (to start recording)
    3. Loop play or stop. One button press.
    4. Maybe go back up to song mode. One button press.
    5. Go to #1

    But on the Deluge, it works like this:

    REPEATEDLY
    1. Select and enter a new track (one button press).
    2. Manually LEARN a new controller connection -- every single time! -- with two button presses and a keypress on your controller.
    3. Record the MIDI data: one button press (to start recording)
    5. Loop play or stop. One button press.
    6. Remember to manually UNLEARN the controller connection, or else when you lay down your next track you'll be recording into two tracks simultaneously for no good reason. This this is two or three button presses, assuming you didn't forget. And the connection and arming information is hidden unless you manually check for it.
    7. Maybe go back up to song mode. One button press.
    8. Go to #1

    your other point, originally stated in the top of the thread, was with accidently recording onto multiple tracks. this is also easily addressed by unlearning and learning from song view between recordings. if you are using one keyboard, especially with one that can't change midi channels, this function is going to be the friend you will have to get acquainted with.

    So your solution is to change midi channels on top of rearming and relearning?

    also, correct me if i'm wrong, but after you record into a clip it should be disarmed automatically.

    As far as I can tell, it stays armed and connected to the controller.

    with those things in your arsenal you shouldn't be pulling your hair out, but it does take time to commit it to memory.

    I know you guys are trying to be helpful, and I do appreciate it. But this is by far the most convoluted recording workflow I have ever dealt with, including multitrack MIDI sequencers I have designed and built with my own two hands. Laying down new tracks is, I would imagine, the #1 task for a MIDI sequencer. How is this anything other than a grand user interface screwup?

    I asked this question hoping that I was an idiot and there was actually a non-stupid way to do this that I had missed. But it doesn't look like it. :-( You guys have been great, but I don't want to debate the merits of the Deluge's approach -- as far as I'm concerned, it's a giormous coding error.

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    LegsMechanicalLegsMechanical United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 36

    I don't want to belabor this whole thing, but it seems like you're making it more difficult than it needs to be (and I'm guessing that what others are seeing as well and why this is going on and on...)

    You don't need to arm/re-arm or learn/unlearn constantly if you assign one midi channel to each instrument and then change channels. AND if you copy a clip (to make a variation of that track in a new section), then the learn setting will carry over AND only record on the version of the clip in the active section.

    So, learn once, change channels to change instruments and sections to switch "parts"

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    Too_MereToo_Mere Chicago, IL, USABeta Tester, Mentor Posts: 568
    edited September 2021

    @feijai said:

    Nope. You can only do that for existing clips. Which is a pretty minor need. It doesn't matter to me that you can go back to a previous track in song mode and re-arm it with an undocumented button press combination: as I have said in the past, I want to lay down multiple BRAND NEW tracks.

    REPEATEDLY
    1. Select and enter a new track (one button press).
    You guys have been great, but I don't want to debate the merits of the Deluge's approach -- as far as I'm concerned, it's a giormous coding error.

    As suggested before, you can learn and unlearn right from song mode. No need to enter new clips, which eliminates a few presses.
    Just made this quickly to demonstrate that and arranger mutes:

    You continue to dump on the Deluge here but I’d recommend you attempt to try its current functionality with our suggestions instead of focusing on how you wish it would work, and you may have better luck.

    Post edited by Too_Mere on
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    phillipadsmithphillipadsmith United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 67
    edited September 2021

    @feijai said:
    I asked this question hoping that I was an idiot and there was actually a non-stupid way to do this that I had missed. But it doesn't look like it. :-( You guys have been great, but I don't want to debate the merits of the Deluge's approach -- as far as I'm concerned, it's a giormous coding error.

    I guess I'm biased because I own the Deluge, but I prefer the workflow that's been described above to anything else I've used.

    I only have so many hardware synths/drum machines.

    Each bit of hardware is on its own MIDI channel (1-16)

    Each has its own clip in my Deluge song template that's already been learned to its own MIDI channel on the controller.

    I turn on the Deluge. Load my song template. And hit channel 1-16 on my Keystep and can start playing and recording that part.

    No arming/disarming needed.

    If I need a new clip that doesn't exist, I just clone the existing clip for that bit of hardware, which automatically mutes the previous version.

    Not trying to win you over. Perhaps check out the Pyramid (https://squarp.net/)?

    Post edited by phillipadsmith on
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    feijaifeijai Washington, DCPosts: 25

    @Too_Mere said:
    Just made this quickly to demonstrate that and arranger mutes:

    I appreciate the video! But I think that what you're really showing is how to create a clip without entering it. That's a useful trick, but you I think you still have to go through the process of manually learning and unlearning the MIDI controller on a per clip basis. I don't think this trick reduces the complexity however (and I'd prefer to go into a clip anyway so as to see the notes recorded in real time). I guess it reduces the number of buttons you have to press by 1? Also constantly having to learn and unlearn the controller may be more convenient for you because your grid controller is right next to the Deluge and is shaped like it. For me, this is not the case.

  • 2
    Too_MereToo_Mere Chicago, IL, USABeta Tester, Mentor Posts: 568

    @feijai said:
    I guess it reduces the number of buttons you have to press by 1? Also constantly having to learn and unlearn the controller may be more convenient for you because your grid controller is right next to the Deluge and is shaped like it. For me, this is not the case.

    Well it’s 2 presses to enter and exit a clip, which adds up if you’re doing it to learn or unlearn every clip. And you did seem unhappy about the number of button presses.

    The shape and location of my controller did make it possible to do one handed while video recording. But normally I’d more comfortably use two hands, which is no more convenient than any MIDI controller within reach.

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    phillipadsmithphillipadsmith United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 67

    @Too_Mere said:

    Just made this quickly to demonstrate that and arranger mutes:

    Had no idea you could do that mute from arranger mode! Very cool trick. Thanks!

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    Too_MereToo_Mere Chicago, IL, USABeta Tester, Mentor Posts: 568

    No problem! It def comes in handy 👍🏼

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    rezareza los angelesBeta Tester Posts: 97

    @feijai said:

    @reza said:
    your other point, originally stated in the top of the thread, was with accidently recording onto multiple tracks. this is also easily addressed by unlearning and learning from song view between recordings. if you are using one keyboard, especially with one that can't change midi channels, this function is going to be the friend you will have to get acquainted with.

    So your solution is to change midi channels on top of rearming and relearning?

    no. if each of tracks you want are on different midi channels, you learn once. that's it. you don't unlearn after. which was why someone earlier asked what kind of MIDI device you were using, to see if you have the option to switch channels on that device. but you gave them attitude for even asking.

    make a project with a preloaded midi template that has multiple tracks with unique midi channels per OR try the various suggestions that have been provided OR, what I really expect from you, is just huff and puff.

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    It seems a MIDI Learn Mode option for the "Active Track/Clip/Synth/Kit/Whatever-You-Want-To-Call-It"...would solve all of this. It would save enormous amounts of time creating and modifying song templates.

    It's been requested and postulated about how it could work for years on this forum and, as far as I can tell so far, has been ignored.

  • 1
    phillipadsmithphillipadsmith United StatesBeta Tester Posts: 67

    @dannereau said:
    It seems a MIDI Learn Mode option for the "Active Track/Clip/Synth/Kit/Whatever-You-Want-To-Call-It"...would solve all of this. It would save enormous amounts of time creating and modifying song templates.

    It's been requested and postulated about how it could work for years on this forum and, as far as I can tell so far, has been ignored.

    I don't disagree that having something like that as an option would likely satisfy a few people -- I don't believe anyone is debating that.

    However, some other Deluge users -- including me -- actually prefer the way it works now. It's not wrong, or broken, or a bug to be fixed, it's just a different approach.

    For example, when working in typical DAW, it annoys the hell out of me that the "track in focus approach" typically takes control of all of the incoming MIDI events unless I use some oddball workaround to limit it to one channel (the so-called "OMNI" mode is often the default).

    I want MIDI channel 1 to control instrument 1 and MIDI channel 2 to control instrument 2, and so on -- and I can set that up nicely in the Deluge, save it as a template, and it's there for me to use every time.

    To each their own, but at least recognize that there's no "right" or "wrong" way to do it.

    Cheers,
    P.

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