Automation?

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sysrqer
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Re: Automation?

Postby sysrqer » Wed Jun 20, 2018 9:55 pm

jonetsu wrote:Renoise is certainly great in many aspects. I did one piece with it about 2 years ago. I listened to it recently by coincidence and I can still see the hex numbers and the fast scrolling of multitrack data and the totally square rhythm. Laborious. For someone into trackers it might be otherwise but I find it totally counter intuitive. Redux on the other is great and I certainly do not mind programming a beat or a riff. But a whole piece ?

Yeah it's not for everyone. I came to linux thinking I could run ableton in wine but that didn't work as well as I wanted so I started to look at what linux could offer. Ardour didn't have any midi at the time, there was no bitwig. I tried qtractor but audio editing was pretty basic, I tried lmms but I didn't like it. Renoise came along at that point and could offer everything I needed but in a strange way. I do crave to work in piano rolls for melodic stuff though. I would miss it a lot if I had to move away completely.

jonetsu wrote:For me it's not Renoise, it's Bitwig. It has a totally awesome modulation system. And it feels natural. For creation that's great. For mixing and mastering, it is still Mixbus32C (Ardour). I find Bitwig lousy at doing any real mixing.

Bitwig is amazing but coming from an ableton background I didn't find it as intuitive, to a level where it frustrated me. I'm sure that's just me and I could become very comfortable with it with some practice but I haven't been sold on it. It should tick all the boxes for me, it's very much what I am used to, but somehow it felt awkward. That said, I was quite comfortable writing in renoise so anything probably would be weird after that. I'm not really a fan of mixbus but I don't tend to export and then mix, it's more like writing and mixing is the same process - I'm often changing sounds and arrangement at the mix stage. I want to change this though, reaper has given me a sight of mixing stuff in audio in an easy to use daw so I might start drawing a line in renoise and taking in to reaper. At that stage mixbus interests me a lot but I have never worked in a way to use it as it should be.

jonetsu wrote:"... vocal reverbs and delays that duck when there is singing and then opens up when it stops because the wet is modulated by the incoming signal..."

Hmmm, yes. Side-chaining, isn't it ?

Yes pretty much, that particular example can be done in ardour with the pin connections but that is just an example I use frequently. The great thing is that you don't need to worry about whether the plug in has a sidechain input, anything can be a target for modulation regardless.

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Re: Automation?

Postby protozone » Wed Jun 20, 2018 11:09 pm

rghvdberg wrote:Take a nice synth track.
Duplicate track.
Pan each track hard left / right.
Take a synth parameter, for example filter cutoff.
Modulate it slightly, random during the track.
Do the same for the duplicate track. Random! Don't copy the automation.

Bam super wide synth..


Thanks! That's a great technique, and one that doesn't make my brain go numb with boredom or frustration.
I hardly use any automation either, but I really should.

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Re: Automation?

Postby jonetsu » Wed Jun 20, 2018 11:59 pm

sysrqer wrote:I'm not really a fan of mixbus but I don't tend to export and then mix, it's more like writing and mixing is the same process - I'm often changing sounds and arrangement at the mix stage.


I like changing hats. The hat of a creator/musician then a break and a change of hat for the mixer hat. Seeing the exported tracks as a mixer would see them, with the creativity of the mixer. What can we do with these tracks ?

But then it also gets blurred as there are musically creative modifications done once the mix has begun. But always there's a line, a real line to cross which consists of changing DAW from Mixbus to Bitwig. After modifications are done to the piece, tracks modified, tracks added, etc... the line is there again: exporting the tracks to the mixer.

Recently I heard or I read somewhere, I don't recall where, there was a mixer guy saying well, in the times of tape we had to rewind the tape so that was about 2-3 minutes off time shooting the breeze, doing not much, and that gave us little breaks here and there. He was saying that today people spend way too much time without any breaks in their DAWs. So for me, this line to cross is like a refreshing thing, moving from one domain to the other, from creation to mixing (and further down to mastering). Wearing each hat I think about the delivery to the other hat. Will the mixing hat like to deal with that rather edgy track or should I fix it now ? Will the mastering hat like it to get a mix that gives almost no room to work with ? 8)

Each stage output is some form of package.

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Re: Automation?

Postby lilith » Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:49 am

Just discovered yesterday that reaper also has an in track midi editor, which is somewhat reduced compared to the regular one.
https://soundcloud.com/lilith_93
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Re: Automation?

Postby sysrqer » Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:42 am

lilith wrote:Just discovered yesterday that reaper also has an in track midi editor, which is somewhat reduced compared to the regular one.

How do you access that?

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Re: Automation?

Postby tavasti » Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:44 pm

jonetsu wrote:Be sure that you can do a lot in Ardour/Mixbus regarding automation. You can do a lot of creativity, no problem. The shortcomings were mentioned for discussion, for comparison. They are nice features to have and they open the door to even more creativity. Although the current possibilities can be used quite a lot. It's all about imagination and creativity and being able to do stuff with what you have. That can go a long way in any circumstance.

Would it be possible to use some external program / plugin to do LFO? With OSC you can do something, but I suppose everything pretty fast is impossible, but for really slow LFO's that might work. For filtering, is there any lowpass filter plugin with built-in LFO?
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Re: Automation?

Postby lilith » Fri Jun 22, 2018 1:43 pm

sysrqer wrote:
lilith wrote:Just discovered yesterday that reaper also has an in track midi editor, which is somewhat reduced compared to the regular one.

How do you access that?


Click on the midi track and hit "e". :mrgreen: On the top right you'll have some basic tools.
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Re: Automation?

Postby sysrqer » Fri Jun 22, 2018 3:19 pm

lilith wrote:
sysrqer wrote:
lilith wrote:Just discovered yesterday that reaper also has an in track midi editor, which is somewhat reduced compared to the regular one.

How do you access that?


Click on the midi track and hit "e". :mrgreen: On the top right you'll have some basic tools.

Oh nice, thanks for the tip!

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Re: Automation?

Postby jonetsu » Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:40 pm

tavasti wrote: Would it be possible to use some external program / plugin to do LFO? With OSC you can do something, but I suppose everything pretty fast is impossible, but for really slow LFO's that might work. For filtering, is there any lowpass filter plugin with built-in LFO?


Yes, it's absolutely possible. For instance, many Melda Production plugins have modulators built-in. These modulators include LFOs, and also follower, envelope, and such. As for filters, there's the WOW2 filter that includes modulators. If currently using it at the moment.

At 03:07 in the following overview from CM the modulation aspects of WOW2 are well covered:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XapIT2XSPmg

Cheers.

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Re: Automation?

Postby sysrqer » Sat Jun 23, 2018 6:50 am

The TAL filters have LFOs.

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Re: Automation?

Postby tavasti » Sun Jun 24, 2018 10:29 am

tavasti wrote:Would it be possible to use some external program / plugin to do LFO? With OSC you can do something, but I suppose everything pretty fast is impossible, but for really slow LFO's that might work.

I did some experimenting with oscdump and oscsend commands. Put Mixbus sending position both time and beat+bar format:
ded9e5b6.e74aa970 /position/bbt s "001|01|0014"
ded9e5b6.e74b72c4 /position/time s "00:00:00.005"
ded9e5b7.00b3b320 /position/bbt s "001|01|0269"
ded9e5b7.00b662fd /position/time s "00:00:00.101"
ded9e5b7.1a16d6dc /position/bbt s "001|01|0538"
ded9e5b7.1a187a4a /position/time s "00:00:00.202"
ded9e5b7.337d6301 /position/bbt s "001|01|0807"
ded9e5b7.337f498c /position/time s "00:00:00.304"
ded9e5b7.4ce368f0 /position/bbt s "001|01|1062"
ded9e5b7.4ce46498 /position/time s "00:00:00.400"
ded9e5b7.668986fc /position/bbt s "001|01|1332"
ded9e5b7.668b3b31 /position/time s "00:00:00.501"
ded9e5b7.7ff151e6 /position/bbt s "001|01|1601"
ded9e5b7.7ff27fe4 /position/time s "00:00:00.602"
ded9e5b7.995b4677 /position/bbt s "001|01|1856"
ded9e5b7.995cb790 /position/time s "00:00:00.698"
ded9e5b7.b2bedfa3 /position/bbt s "001|02|0205"

So there you could get where you are (0.1s intervals), and then sending your control values based on that. Most likely for fast and time-accurate, you would need to calculate time in that external software, and send values timed with internal clock instead of given feedback. Or if you just need to have some static lfo running for some parameter all the time, then put it just running.

Tried this with success:
while true; do for i in {0..70} {69..1} ; do oscsend localhost 3819 /strip/plugin/parameter iiif 1 3 3 $i; sleep 0.01; done ; done

Without that sleep, it is fast, and here we are dealing with shell, so getting fast moving LFO with external program is definitely possible. Getting it to be in perfect sync may be much harder.

Possible softwares for doing fancy automation:
http://kymatica.com/Software/AlgoScore
http://scatter.nyc/duration/

And the docs: http://manual.ardour.org/using-control- ... -with-osc/
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Re: Automation?

Postby tavasti » Sun Jun 24, 2018 12:37 pm

jonetsu wrote:And there are no predefined waves in Ardour, or automated way of creating wave patterns. You'd like to quickly put a sine wave, then you have to draw it. And once drawn, there's no way to change it's frequency, it's shape, etc...

After studying bit more I think I've found my way to do LFO's in ardour / mixbus: edit with vi!

1) In Mixbus /Ardour:
- select automation you want to deal with
- select mode as 'touch'
- put some automation values to points where you want to start, stop, change
2) Save your file and quit
3) make backup copy of your songname.ardour file (as a backups, in case you break the file)
4) Open ardour file with your text editor
5) Find string 'Touch'
6) make your edits

For part 6, some script creating values might be handy. Here is my example:

- Created file, and got datapoints:

277590 46.366779327392578
416386 83.077545166015625

I want to have two full sine waves between those time points 277590 and 416386. Distance is 138796 and we rotate 720 degrees, so we travel 192 points/degree. Want to have baselinevalue 40, and have +-30 variation over that. Let's do 25 degree steps. In command line, that will be:
i=0; while [ $i -lt 730 ] ; do val=$(echo "40.0+30*s($i*(3.14159/180))" | bc -l); echo "$((277590+$i*192)) $val"; i=$(($i+25)); done


Paste that output to your editor, save, and open file in Mixbus/Ardour. With your gui you can move datapoints, select region of points and paste them to new place, so that you don't need to edit huge amount of lines by hand.

------------

Here is few more examples of waveforms:

From start to timepoint 2220723, I wanted to have 6 sine waves (2160 degrees), baseline raising from 20 to 80, sine wave height 20 units.

i=0; while [ $i -lt 2160 ] ; do val=$(echo "20.0+$i*60/2160+20*s($i*(3.14159/180))" | bc -l); echo "$(($i*1028)) $val"; i=$(($i+25)); done

From start to timepoint 2220723, I wanted to have 6 sine waves (2160 degrees), baseline 50, sine wave height raising from 0 to 50 units.

i=0; while [ $i -lt 2160 ] ; do val=$(echo "50+$i*50/2160*s($i*(3.14159/180))" | bc -l); echo "$(($i*1028)) $val"; i=$(($i+25)); done


Edit: Timepoints are most likely 48000/s, so most likely this will be 0.5hz wave:
i=0; while [ $i -lt 760 ] ; do val=$(echo "50+30*s($i*(3.14159/180))" | bc -l); echo "$(($i*266)) $val"; i=$(($i+25)); done
Last edited by tavasti on Sun Jun 24, 2018 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Automation?

Postby sysrqer » Sun Jun 24, 2018 2:35 pm

Nothing like linux to make things quick and easy :D

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Re: Automation?

Postby jonetsu » Tue Jun 26, 2018 11:54 pm

- How do you modulate your sounds ?
- Simple, I use emacs.

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Re: Automation?

Postby tavasti » Wed Jun 27, 2018 7:32 am

jonetsu wrote:- How do you modulate your sounds ?
- Simple, I use emacs.

Yes, for basic users. Advanced users will write perl/python/something script to do it. :P

In reality, how often you have needed LFO for automation? If cases are rare, then even this approach works. With your editor, add desired waveform, and then copy it multiple times in mixbus/ardour to get desired values. I would feel this approach is still handier than external program dealing with automation.

Bonus waveform: 0.5 hz sine, base 50, amplitude change during 10 wavelength from 0 to 50 and back to 0, smooth change in amplitude (first half of sine wave as modulator). For this kind of shape, you would need 0.05 hz LFO modulating 0.5 hz LFO, so I suppose that is not available on most of the DAWs?

i=0; while [ $i -lt 3600 ] ; do val=$(echo "50+50*s($i*(3.14159/180))*s($i/20*3.14159/180)" | bc -l); echo "$(($i*266)) $val"; i=$(($i+15)); done


Maybe this might be worth writing some tutorial, or creating video?
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