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MIDI Series – Part 3: MIDI – Recording

MIDI Series – Part 3: MIDI – Recording

In the third segment in our small MIDI series, we’ll focus on MIDI recording: If you’ve read the previous segment on “MIDI connections and settings, you should be well prepared to get going.

If you’ve stumbled across this article and the term MIDI isn’t part of your repertoire of musical terms, check out our “What is MIDI?” article now!

 Recording a MIDI in Music Maker

For a MIDI recording, you’ll first need a MIDI keyboard. You’ll need to connect this to your computer or sound card and then set the correct settings. (As a reminder: this process is also outlined in the second part of the series.)

Choose a recording track that you want to record onto. Here, you can set whether audio or MIDI should be recorded. Double click on the red REC button in the track and “MIDI REC” will appear on the indicator. If you click once, you’ll adjust the settings for “AUDIO REC”, but this would be for an audio recording which we don’t need in this case. Here’s a clarification of this:

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The track is now ready for MIDI recording. Next, click on the record button in the transport console and start recording. A new MIDI object will be written into the track during recording.

MIDI recording in Samplitude Music Studio

If you’re using Samplitude Music Studio, you can use and record several MIDI devices simultaneously. Here you can individually set in each track which device should be recorded. The Track Editor gives you the quickest access to the track’s MIDI options. In the “MIDI” tab, you can find all the major control and routing options for MIDI devices. Here’s a help graphic:

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The “TRACK SETTINGS” is another way of configuring in Samplitude Music Studio, which can also be opened using the key combination “Alt + I” In the “MIDI” section, recording and playback devices can be configured . This is how the menu looks:

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Handy tip:
You can set a metronome with a count-in. With equal strokes, the metronome gives you the tempo in quarter notes and can guide you. You can find the metronome settings under “SYSTEM OPTIONS” or with the key shortcut “Y” under the item “METRONOME”. You can choose whether the metronome should be active in recording or playback. If you don’t like the sound of the metronome, you can change it. It’s also recommended to set a count-in for the recording. This way, everyone involved will be given an appropriate preparation time before the recording. After the recording has been activated, the play cursor will first spring to before the recording point and starts the recording only after the preset count-in time.

Recording with Takes in Samplitude Music Studio

It can often happen that you’re not happy with a recording and want to start again. To do this, you can just delete the first recording and start the recording process again from the beginning. However, this will mean that the recording material will be deleted before you can determine whether you will actually get a better recording the second time.

To avoid this problem, you can record several “takes” in Samplitude Music Studio, one after the other, and then decide on a take after the last recording.

To do this, just record the same section again without deleting the object on the track beforehand. Then select the object and go to “OBJECT” in the program menu and then “TAKE MANAGER” or use the shortcut “Ctrl + Alt + Shift + T”: This is how this looks:

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In the take manager you’ll find all the individual recording passes listed vertically. You can choose a take by putting a check mark next to it. Compare your recordings and decide which one you prefer. Takes remain saved in the object unless you manually delete them. With this, you can always return to alternative recordings.

Handy tip:
There are three different MIDI recording modes to choose from:

  • NORMAL: With each recording process, a new object will be created over the existing object. The old object will remain saved as a take. This corresponds with the audio recording mode.
  • OVERDUB: The recording will be saved in the existing object. New MIDI files will be mixed together with existing ones.
  • REPLACE: The recording will be saved in the existing object and existing MIDI files will be overwritten. This recording mode is an option for users that aren’t skilled keyboard players. You can start with few notes and add more with each further recording, until a complex melody is formed.

The recording mode can be set in the transport console.

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With what you’ve learned from this article, you should now be ready to carry out MIDI recordings in Music Maker or Samplitude Music Studio. Have fun recording!

In the fourth segment in our MIDI series, we’ll show you how you can edit the finished MIDI recordings in the Midi editor!

Author

Basti is a freshman at MAGIX since 2015 and works in the Social Media team, mostly focussing on french communication. He is studying Music and Media and currently writing his Bachelor thesis on the origins of hip-hop. When he does not navigate the social media world, he loves to play piano and dance.

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