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The Digital Performer Tips Sheet

Discussion of Digital Performer use, optimization, tips and techniques on MacOS.

Moderators: James Steele, Shooshie

Forum rules
This forum is for most discussion related to the use and optimization of Digital Performer [MacOS] and plug-ins as well as tips and techniques. It is NOT for troubleshooting technical issues, complaints, feature requests, or "Comparative DAW 101."

Postby Shooshie » Thu Jan 05, 2006 12:43 pm

Tips added for selecting soundbites, and for speeding up crossfades and background processing. The Tips sheet at this time consists of the first two posts of this thread. Also, there is a "Disclaimer" post, but you needn't bother with that.

Check it out (changes are at the end of post #2) for the latest.

Last edited by Shooshie on Sun May 28, 2006 4:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Talkback with foot switch

Postby chamelion » Wed Jan 25, 2006 1:58 pm

buzzsmith wrote:Picture, but not a great one!...

Always a pleasure to find a studio is as messy as mine :)


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be hoppy!"
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Postby lord funk » Thu Jan 26, 2006 5:45 pm

Mind if I add a tip?

Category: Setup
Quickly Audition Color Schemes
Works: Everywhere
Instead of selecting the color schemes one by one to see them, choose Edit Color Schemes... in Setup>>Colors. Clicking on the list will instantly change the colors in your document.
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Postby chamelion » Mon Jan 30, 2006 5:13 am

I'd like to offer a very cool tip that can help you to streamline level-setting during a mix:

Category: Obscure (at least to me) keyboard controller.
Description: Create the effect of a temporary group with any set of faders, regardless of whether or not the tracks selected belong to existing groups.
Works: During mixdown

OK, you're geting close to a mix, and everything's sounding good. You're fine-tuning your level on the the master fader prior to pulling in a compressor, but you're getting the odd clip light on the master fader. You need to locate the culprit/s, and adjust levels without altering their relative relationships within the mix.

The amazing 'W' trick!:

1. Hide all channels in the mixing console except the ones you want to temporarily group and tweak.

2. Hold down 'W".

3. Change the level of any of the faders, and they'll track as a group until you release the W.

I've tried to find this tip in the manual, but either I've been looking in the wrong places, or it's not there.


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Postby Shooshie » Mon Jan 30, 2006 2:50 pm

I thought that one was in the tip sheet, but I looked and it wasn't there. There is a "group" section featuring the amazing W command, but it doesn't specifically mention the faders. I'll add your tip. Thanks!

[edit] Done... search the first tip page for "chamelion" to find it. I inserted it with the other group command tips, about 1/4 the way down the page. Also, I added Lord Funk's color scheme tip at the end of the second "post" of the tip sheet.[/edit]

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Postby Frodo » Mon May 29, 2006 6:20 pm

Category: General Operation
Stuck MIDI Note
Tip content :Stuck MIDI note fix- without having to force quit and reboot-- when the "ALL NOTES OFF" command doesn't work.

Stuck MIDI note fix- without having to force quit and reboot-- when the "ALL NOTES OFF" command doesn't work.

This is recommended for one or two stuck notes and not a cluster.

Create a "dummy" MIDI track-- one that is not assigned to an instrument or contains MIDI data... I suggest having one in each project just in case.

Unless there are some unusual circumstsances, it should be easy to identify which instrument is playing and which note.

Record-activate the dummy MIDI track, and hold down the note in question. While holding the note, select the MIDI track that holds the MIDI info for the stuck note.

Release the note you're holding, and voila!! Note off. Keep in mind that this process does NOT involve hitting PLAY or RECORD.

Wash, rinse, repeat as necessary. As mentioned, this is probably not ideal for large clusters.

The short explanation is that you just need to send note-off data and not note-on, otherwise the note will keep playing. The dummy MIDI track accepts the note-on data, but once you switch (while holding the note) to the problem MIDI track, all it gets is the note-off.

Silly perhaps, but when you have tons of VI's loaded, it really saves time from having to start all over to wait for DP and all the instruments to load.
Last edited by Frodo on Fri Jul 07, 2006 3:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Shooshie » Fri Jun 02, 2006 1:55 pm

The Big Digital Performer Database Project of May, 2006

In May of 2006, I started a questionnaire (click here)to create a database that would help us get to the bottom of some problems we were having in DP 4.5 through 4.61. The following database is the result of that effort. You'll need Microsoft Excel to run the database, but there's a PDF (see below) which you can use for reference if you don't have Excel. Not ideal, but it works.

Link: The Database thread.

Download here: Digital Performer Systems Database (MS Excel, 200K)

The database instructions are at the top of the spreadsheet in row 2. Basically, you click in a row below row 15, and the database activates. You can then sort the data by specific columns of information. Be careful interpreting the data. Serious problems are rated from 7 to 10. Below a 7 should be considered less of a bug than an occasional and random anomaly for statistical purposes. Yes, there are lots of degrees of shading, but if you're drawing statistical conclusions, the serious correlations don't begin until the problems reach a high ranking. Keep that in mind as you sort by various columns, and be sure to look for patterns in the other data.

Also, bear in mind that there are sometimes more factors at work than a single data point. For example: some people report no stuck notes, yet they use MIDI Driver version 1.3.2--the bad one. In most of those cases, you'll find the reason for that is one of the following:

1) they don't do MIDI
2) they use another brand of MIDI interface, and thus the MOTU driver does not pertain to them.

So, again, don't jump to conclusions until you look at the rest of the data.

The Digital Performer Systems Database in PDF Format 0 140K (download it; it's usless in Safari)

If you don't have Excel, this PDF may help, but it is very hard to use. The PDF is organized by columns. Each page represents the next several columns as you move across the spreadsheet from left to right. For instance, page 1 displays columns A through J. Page 2 displays K through U. The same rows appear on every page, so if you are looking at someone's data in, say, row 22, then you'd follow row 22 across every page. Unfortunately, the PDF did not print the gridlines, so you'll have to use a ruler across your screen or just eyeball it very carefully. (Preview does let you select rows, which helps a little) If you have a particular problem, this PDF may help assuage your curiosity, but I doubt that you will be able to use it for any serious exploration of the data.

Thank you everyone for participating. Like the Tips Sheet, this couldn't be done without your help, so everyone who participated needs to take a bow and accept my gratitude for your contributions. Have fun using it.

MIDI and Audio Drivers - Download For Compatibility
Especially relevant for Digital Performer versions 4.5 - 4.61

If need to know what versions of drivers you use, your drivers are located in the Finder at this path:
HD/System/Library/Extensions/Motu MIDI Driver.kext

If you need to download drivers for compatibility with DP version 4.61 or before, try the following links. Exercise caution and use backups until you determine that these have fixed your problem.
MOTU USB MIDI Driver version 1.3.1.sit

MOTU OSX PCI Driver version 1.0.8.sit

Best of luck...

Last edited by Shooshie on Sun Dec 10, 2006 4:09 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Shooshie » Wed Jul 05, 2006 7:23 pm

Acronyms & Abbreviations Commonly Found in Music Discussions

This appeared in a thread in July, 2006. Seemed like a good thing to keep around in a sticky thread. Last update: January 23, 2012

For more info that you may not find here, check the Audio Engineer's Online Dictionary which Frodo discovered for us!

For non-audio abbreviations and acronyms, especially internet slang, check Wikipedia's List of Slang Phrases

For a fairly complete list of audio data and file formats supported by OS X, be sure to check this Apple Developer reference page.

AAC = Advanced Audio Coding: a standardized, lossy compression and encoding scheme for digital audio. AAC is considered the successor to the MP3 format by MP3’s creator, Fraunhofer IIS. AAC’s most famous usage is as the default audio format of Apple's iPhone, iPod, iTunes, and the format used for all iTunes Store audio (with extensions for proprietary Digital Rights Management (DRM) where used).
AAC = Advanced Audio Coding: Originally, the shortened name for the MPEG-2 Advanced Audio Coding specification, declared an international standard by MPEG in April 1997; however, now the term is used also to refer to MPEG-4 advanced audio coding.
A-B = Stereo Microphone Technique using two parallel omni mics placed 50 to 70 cm apart. Uses phase differences to create stereo image, thus not mono-compatible.
ADAT = Alesis Digital Audio Tape
ADC = Auto Delay Compensation (same as PDC)
ADR = Additional Dialogue Recording -- or-- Automatic Dialogue Replacement
ADSR = Attack/Decay/Sustain/Release - the envelope of linear dynamic flow in audio synthesis. Synthesizers use these four aspects as starting points for a note's envelope.
AES/EBU = Audio Engineering Society/European Broadcasting Union. Digital connection with connectors resembling those of XLR.
AIFC = Audio Interchange File Format: AIFC is AIFF with added provisions for compression encoding. AIFC files are almost universally readable by anything that can read AIFF, but a new format introduced by Apple in OSX is currently output by Digital Performer in OS X 10.4. 9 and higher upon Bounce to Disk with AIFF selected, and the resulting AIFC file is of a type that may not be readable by older applications, thus the two are not necessarily interchangeable. Traditionally, AIFC is simply an AIFF file in which the compression chunk is set to a compression CODEC, rather than being left blank as in AIFF format.
AIFF-C/sowt Audio Interchange File Format - Compressed/sowt: A little-known audio file format introduced by Apple sometime in late 2006- early 2007 without documentation or announcement. While Apple's audio applications seemed unaffected (possibly because of insider information), others like Digital Performer were caught off-guard, and thus a bounce-to-disk with AIFF selected actually produces AIFF-C/sowt which shows up in the Finder as AIFC, but is not the same as the traditional AIFC format, which formerly was virtually interchangeable with AIFF. See Wikipedia for Details.
AIFF = Audio Interchange File Format: developed by Apple for storing audio digitally in a lossless form on disk. Generally this means PCM format combined with "chunks" which are sections designated for name, author, instrument, annotation, MIDI Data, compression (in the case of AIFC) and other data. AIFF on Wikipedia See also: PCM
ALAC = Apple Lossless (also known as Apple Lossless Encoder, ALE, or Apple Lossless Audio Codec) is an audio codec developed by Apple Inc. for lossless data compression of digital music. Apple Lossless data is stored within an MP4 container with the filename extension .m4a. While Apple Lossless has the same file extension as AAC, it is not a variant of AAC, but uses linear prediction similar to other lossless codecs such as FLAC and Shorten. iPods with a dock connector (not the Shuffle) and recent firmware can play Apple Lossless-encoded files. It does not utilize any digital rights management (DRM) scheme, but by the nature of the container, it is thought that DRM can be applied to ALAC much the same way it can with other files in QuickTime containers.
APA = Waves' Audio Processing Accelerators (run Waves plugins via Ethernet)
APC = Automatic Pitch Correction
ATR = Audio Tape Recorder
ASCAP = American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers
ASIO = Audio Streaming Input Output (audio driver developed by Steinberg)
au - the standard audio file format used by Sun, Unix and Java. The audio in au files can be PCM or compressed with the ulaw, alaw or G729 codecs.
AU = Audio Unit, Apple plug-in format
B = Bel. A relative measure of sound.
BDE = Beat Detection Engine
BE = Big Endian - In audio, a PCM format oriented toward "Mac" or Motorola processors. Little Endian and Big Endian have to do with byte order. This reference page explains it all, plus gives practical advantages of the two formats
BMI = Broadcast Music Inc.
BNC = Bayonet Neill Concelman connector (named after the designer)
BTD = Bounce To Disk
BWAV = See BWF, Broadcast Wave Format.
BWF = Broadcast Wave Format. It is an extension of the popular Microsoft WAVE audio format and is the recording format of most file-based non-linear digital recorders used for motion picture and television production.
CAF = Core Audio Format. A Core Audio Format (CAF) file can contain audio data of any format. Any application that supports the CAF file format can write audio data to the file or extract the data it contains. However, the ability to encode or decode the audio data contained within it is dependent on the audio codecs available on the system.
CC = Control (or Controller) Channel
CC = MIDI Continuous Controller
CD = Compact Disk
CODEC = compressor/decompressor (or coder/decoder)
CPU = is where most calculations take place. In terms of computing power, the CPU is the most important element of a computer system.
CRT = Cathode Ray Tube (computer monitor, television screen)
CW = Consolidated Window
CW = Continuous Wave
DA = short for digital-to-analog converter
DAE = Digidesign Audio Engine (or something like that), software audio engine used to drive digi hardware
DAW = Digital Audio Workstation
dB = Decibel. See "bel" above, just 1/10th
DC Notch = Digital Compensation adjustment plug to avoid DC offset (signal +/- zero amplitude)
DDP = Disc Description Protocol: a generic disc image file format commonly used for the transport of mastered audio CD data. Created by Doug Carson Associates (DCA), and also exists in an essentially identical format called CMF. It is the format preferred by replication facilities when submitting data for the replication of thousands or even millions of copies of CD's or DVD's. Standard Definition = DDP 2.0 or 2.1, while HD DVD = DDP 3.0.
DIGI = Digidesign (makers of Pro Tools)
DNU = do not use (use that as a label on files all the time!)
DP = Digital Performer
DSP = Digital Signal Processing
DVD = Digital Video Disc
EDL = "Edit Decision List" See "OMF" below.
EQ = Equalizer or Equalization: balancing audio by frequency bands
FLAC = Free Lossless Audio Codec is a popular file format for audio data compression. Being a lossless compression format, FLAC does not remove information from the audio stream, as lossy compression formats such as MP3 and AAC do.
FPS = Frames Per Second
FSK = Frequency Key Shift: Audio time code consisting of a series of pulses which increment the counter of an FSK reading device.
FUD = Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt
FW = FireWire
GB = GigaByte: 1000 MegaBytes, or a billion bytes
GPO = Garritan Personal Orchestra (orchestral samples)
HD = Hard Drive
HD = high definition, among other things a newer ProTools format (as in: ProTools HD)
HDTV = High Definition Television
HUI = Human User Interface
Hz = Hertz. one cycle of a waveform.
IAMIDI = Interapplication MIDI
IDR = Increased Digital Resolution: Waves' noise-shaped dithering technology that works even with previously dithered data.
IEC = Electro-Technical Commission
ISO = International Standards Organization
ITB = In The Box: recording and mixing all take place inside the digital loop, involving a DAW, Digital Hardware, and plugins.
KB = KiloByte: 1000 bytes (or 1024, to be more precise)
kext = Kernel Extension
LAME = "Lame Ain't an MP3 Encoder" And it's not. It's just a codec which acts as the number-crunching engine for MP3 encoder front-ends.
LCD = Liquid Crystal Display: the visual interface display of most calculators and other electronic (including musical) devices.
LDC = large diaphram condenser
LE = Little Endian - In audio, a PCM format oriented toward Intel processors. Little Endian and Big Endian have to do with byte order. This reference page explains it all, plus gives practical advantages of the two formats
LFO = Low Frequency Oscillator
LTC = Longitudinal Time Code: SMPTE's time code format, expressed in audio form as an 80-bit binary audio signal, that describes the location of each frame on film, video, or audio tape in hrs., mins., sec., and frames. LTC is often referred to as SMPTE time code. Vertical (video) counterpart is VITC.
MAS = MOTU Audio System (or something like that), DP's own plug-in and software audio engine format
Mb = MegaBit.
MB = MegaByte: 1000,000 bytes
MBP = Mac Book Pro
ME = MIDI Editor
MIDI = Musical Instrument Digital Interface: information protocol developed in early 1980s by synth makers to network musical performance devices.
MMC = MIDI Machine Control
MOTU = Mark of the Unicorn
MP3 = MPEG-1 Layer-3 format: the most popular for downloading and storing music. By eliminating portions of the audio file that are essentially inaudible, mp3 files are compressed to roughly one-tenth the size of an equivalent PCM file while maintaining reasonably good audio quality. Higher quality encoders (see "LAME") yield higher quality audio. (not to be confused with MPEG-3, an abandoned HD video format)
MP4/m4a = (see MPEG-4) MPEG Layer-4 part 3, the portion of the MPEG-4 codec that includes the foundation for AAC encoding and DRM used in iTunes Music Store
MPEG-4 = MPEG Layer-4 : is a standard used primarily to compress audio and visual (AV) digital data. Introduced in late 1998, it is the designation for a group of audio and video coding standards and related technology agreed upon by the ISO/IEC Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) under the formal standard ISO/IEC 14496. Portions of MPEG-4 are included under MPEG-1 & MPEG-2 codecs.
MPEG-4 - part 3 (ISO/IEC 14496-3) Audio: A set of compression codecs for perceptual coding of audio signals, including some variations of Advanced Audio Coding (AAC) as well as other audio/speech coding tools. Apple's digital rights management (DRM) falls under the MPEG-4 standard.
MPEG-4 - Quicktime Video H.264 = MPEG-4 Part 10 (ISO/IEC 14496-10): Advanced Video Coding (AVC): A codec for video signals which is technically identical to the ITU-T H.264 standard. In Quicktime, it is a fast, high-quality, highly compressed codec.
MPEG = Moving Pictures Experts Group; It is a group working under the directives of the ISO and the IEC to develop an evolving series of standards for compression of moving images. Members include companies such as Sony, Olympus, and others with audio and/or video compression interests. The standards produced by the group are notated with the MPEG acronym, which can be confusing. For example, MP3 refers to MPEG-1 layer 3, whereas MP4 generally is taken to be "slang" for MPEG-4 part 3 (AAC) or MPEG-4 part 10 (h.264), and MPEG-3 basically does not exist, representing a failed video codec.
M/S = Mid-side Technique: a stereo miccing technique that is mono-compatible, consisting of a bidirectional mic (figure 8 ) placed 90 degrees from source, with a forward facing cardioid in the same vertical space, and wired such that the cardioid feeds both channels equally, while the figure 8 mic cancels or reinforces off-axis source signals, subtracting or adding it to the cardioid's signal, creating a stereo image that can be varied by adjusting the relative volume of the mics.
MSI = MOTU Symphonic Instrument (orchestral samples)
MTC = MIDI Time Code: A form of time code, digitized within the MIDI format, expressing time in hours, minutes, seconds and frames, just like SMPTE (LTC and VITC)
MTP = MIDI Time Piece: MOTU's MIDI interface and MIDI Time Code syncronizer/generator
MTPAV or MTP-AV = MIDI Time Piece AV (Audio Visual) MTP that syncs to ATRs, VTRs, Word Clocks, and other audio or visual equipment
MTU = Maximum Transmission Unit. Dictates the max size of ethernet packets.
MW = Master Works: DP's line of plugins, whose EQ--based on SSL or Neve type channel algorithms--is one of the best EQs available for DP.
NTSC = National Television System Committee: a color TV standard developed in the U.S. in 1953, using 30 fps for B&W and 29.97 fps for Color video signals. The United States, Canada, Japan, most of the Western Hemisphere and various Asian countries follow NTSC standards.
OGG = a free, open source container format supporting a variety of codecs, the most popular of which is the audio codec Vorbis. Vorbis offers better compression than MP3 but is less popular.
OMF = Open Media Framework file format — also OMFI - Open Media Framework Interchange: Developed by Avid to assist in the exchange of sessions between different types of work-stations and the Pro Tools software platform. Includes "edit decision list," or EDL which references the time stamps and in and out points of the audio files, like a map to reconstruct the session. OMF only supports audio data; MIDI and automation data are ignored. Effects plug-ins, EQs or other plugins are not included. Clips with pitch or time compression or expansion may disappear after OMF conversion if you forget to update the audio media and EDL reference.
OTB = Out of the box: when recording, either at an analog board, or the digital signal is converted to analog at some point during the mix.
PAL/SECAM = Phase Alternate Line is the TV standard introduced in the early 1960’s in Europe, utilizing 25 fps.
PCI = Peripheral Component Interconnect
PCM = Pulse-code modulation: a digital representation of an analog signal where the magnitude of the signal is sampled regularly at uniform intervals, then quantized to a series of symbols in a digital (usually binary) code. PCM has been used in digital telephone systems and is also the standard form for digital audio in computers and the compact disc red book format. It is also standard in digital video, for example, using ITU-R BT.601. The audio data in a standard AIFF file are uncompressed big-endian pulse-code modulation (PCM).
PCMCIA = Personal Computer Memory Card International Association. This industry association was founded in 1989 to develop a standard for credit card sized removable personal computer adapters known as PC Cards.
PDC = Plugin Delay Compensation (see ADC)
PT = Pro Tools
QK = QuicKeys (macro automation program)
QS = QuickScribe
QT = Apple's Quicktime
Quan Jr. = Quantize Junior, (ie: dithering quantization)
RAM = Random Access Memory
RCA = Radio Corporation of America: also used to describe the plugs and jacks often seen on consumer audio equipment and VCRs. Usually color coded red, white, black, and yellow.
RCA = connector developed by RCA in the 40's to allow connection of phonographs to radios. Also called a phono plug.
REX = Recycle Export Format
RF64 = A BWF-compatible multichannel file format enabling file sizes to exceed 4 Gbyte. It has been specified by the European Broadcasting Union.
RTFM = Read the 'effin Manual.
S/PDIF = Sony/Philips Digital Interface: a standard audio transfer file format.
SBBOD = OSX specific, for "Spinning Beach Ball Of Death"
SDC = small diaphram condenser
SDII = Sound Designer II (two) - an audio file format used natively in Digital Performer and some other audio applications, though not nearly as widely used now (2006) as was true many years ago, when it used to be the default format for Pro Tools. It is basically an AIFF, with a little more info in the header.
SE = Sequence Editor
SECAM = Sequential Electronique Couleur avec Memoire: the broadcast television standard in France, Africa, the Middle East and most of Eastern Europe.
SMF = Standard MIDI File
SMPTE = Society of Motion picture and Television Engineers
SMPTE Time Code = SMPTE's protocol of binary impulses expressing location of each frame on film, video or audio tape in hours, minutes, seconds, and frames. It comes in two forms, an audio signal (see LTC) and a video signal (see VITC)
SNR = Signal to Noise ratio.
SPL = Sound Pressure Level. A measure of loudness.
SR = sample rate (i.e. 44.1 kHz)
SRC = sample rate converter/conversion, i.e. from 96kHz to 44.1kHz
SSL = Solid State Logic: British maker of high-quality mixing boards and audio equipment
SVCD = Super Video CD
SWR = Standing Wave Ratio
TDIF = Tascam Digital InterFace
TDM = Time Division Multiplexing (format by Digidesign for their higher-end hardware)
TO = Tracks Overview Window
TOSlink = ToshibaLink digital connector (optical)
TRS = Tip, Ring, Sleeve: audio jack/plug commonly known as quarter inch stereo plug, like that seen on headphones and patch cords
TT = Tiny Telephone: a type of patch-bay connector utilizing plugs that resemble slightly smaller TRS plugs.
UB = Universal Binary. Programs that contain both Power PC and Intel versions.
µ-law (pronouced "mu-law")= The µ-law algorithm: a companding algorithm, primarily used in the digital telecommunication systems of North America and Japan. As with other companding algorithms, its purpose is to reduce the dynamic range of an audio signal. In the analog domain, this can increase the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) achieved during transmission, and in the digital domain, it can reduce the quantization error (hence increasing signal to quantization noise ratio).
USB = Universal Serial Bus
USB/MIDI = MIDI via the Universal Serial Bus. As more and more virtual instruments are replacing rack mounted units and keyboard-based MIDI instruments, the need for a MIDI interface diminishes. Many controllers are opting for direct USB connection like a mouse. While this allows for much finer control, most still use MIDI as the data format, simply because it is entrenched throughout the industry and can immediately interface with DAWs and VI's.
VCD = Video CD. A Video CD is a high-density optical storage medium. It can store data, typically up to 650 megabytes
VCO = Voltage Controlled Oscillator
VITC = Vertical Interval Time Code: SMPTE's time code format, expressed in video form as binary video signals recorded in the vertical blanking segment between frames, describing frame's location in hours, minutes, seconds, and frames. Audio counterpart is LTC.
VSO = Vienna Symphonic Orchestra (orchestral samples)
VCR = Video Cassette Recorder
VST = Virtual Studio Technology: Steinberg's universal plug-in format
VTR = Video Tape Recorder
WAV = WAVeform Audio Format. A Microsoft and IBM audio file format standard for storing audio on PCs. It is a variant of the RIFF bitstream format method for storing data in "chunks", and thus also close to the IFF and the AIFF format used on Amiga and Macintosh computers, respectively. It is the main format used on Windows systems for raw audio.
WUP = Waves Upgrade Plan
XLR = Ground/Left/Right
WUP = Waves Upgrade Plan
XLR = audio I/O plug, male and female, in which there are three pins: Ground/Left/Right.
X-Y = Stereo miccing technique using two directional mics placed at 90° or more to each other, with capsules in the same vertical space, one atop the other. Keeps phase differences to a minimum for mono compatibility. When both mics are bidirectional and 90 degrees from each other, 45 degrees from source, they are called a Blumlein Pair.

Disregard the "last updated" date below. The correct date is at the top of this post. (Currently January 23, 2012)
Last edited by Shooshie on Fri Aug 24, 2007 9:47 pm, edited 23 times in total.
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Postby Frodo » Fri Jul 07, 2006 6:45 pm

Category: General Operation - Convenience
Import/Export Audio Bundles
Works: in DP 5.x Bundles Window
Tip content :Tired of recreating the same bundles again and again? Started a new project and did get a chance to save to template and its bundle?

This method is for DP 5!

Audio Bundles in DP 5 is now called more simply "Bundles". It is located in the Studio Menu, and can also be accessed via the key command SHIFT + U.

From the Bundles' new little mini menu (which does not exist in DP 4 6x) there are two options: Import Bundle and Export Bundle.

Where are these Bundles Stored?
At present, they can be stored anywhere you like. If you've never saved a bundle, you won't find any on your computer. Create a folder in a memorable location and give it a memorable name such as DP AUDIO BUNDLES FOLDER or similar.

NOTE: The new savable bundle files will sport the extension: '.bundexp'.

To Save a Bundle is to Export a Bundle. Here's how:

Choose Export Bundles fom the Bundles mini menu, give it a unique name and make sure the extension '.bundexp' appears.

Click Save.


To Import a saved or exported Bundle:

Choose Import Bundle from the Bundles mini menu.

Locate your custom exported Bundles folder from the finder window that opens.

Select the '.bundexp' file of your choice.

Click OPEN.

You're done.

The saved Bundle config is ADDED TO the curent Bundle config and doesn't delete anything you may have already set up. You can always deleted any duplicates and unused bundles from the buttons across the bottom of the Bundles Window.

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Postby Shooshie » Sun Jul 16, 2006 2:12 pm

Creating and Editing Control and Automation Points

The Problem
We often hear people say that Digital Performer can't do such and such, and all the other DAWs can, so DP must be the most ridiculous DAW on the planet, and why would anyone use anything so silly? Well, sometimes it's hard to figure out why someone said such a thing, but when we dig in and figure out the problem, it almost always comes back to one thing: infamiliarity with the tools.

Here's the deal. Digital Performer is deep. It's not for those who need their DAW to make all the choices for them. YOU have to make the choice. Once you make the choice of what you want, DP will do it, but you have to know the tools.

DP to the rescue!
DP has enormous power and capacity for creating and manipulating continuous controller shapes, and yet they are contained in just a few controls. Not only does it constrain CC shapes to the grid, it will do so at any crossing point in the shape--beginning, middle, end, or any point in between. While this is touched on in the manual, it doesn't go into detail. When editing a 1000+ page book, one has to be brief and hope people will take the time to figure out those things that would seem obvious. Creating and editing automation data is not always obvious to everyone. It took me some time to learn it, but I was glad that I did. I'll do my best to explain, but first some basics:

Before we get started, we must set the ramp density for the control points. If they are too largely spaced, there will be too much stair-stepping between points. Too closely spaced, and you will risk MIDI Logjam. For the purpose of this demo, so that my shapes are clear, I'm going to use a setting of 1, but I would rarely use that in actual practice [I originally wrote that while still using a G4 Mac. Since upgrading to an Intel in 2007, I'm not sure that ramp density is an issue. Just set it for 1 unless it makes it too hard to edit]. For this discussion, I'm using the MIDI Edit Window, but automation data in the Sequence Editor works exactly the same way.

Set your ramp density

Next: the Toolbar and Tool Settings:
Note: there is much to learn about the subject of this tutorial in the DP7 manual: Pages 366 -379.

The Toolbar may or may not be visible when you open your edit windows. To bring it out, type the "Tilde" key ( ~ ) all by itself. Or the reverse accent key: ( ` ). In other words, don't use the shift key or command key. The toolbar should appear and disappear as you toggle it on and off. The toolbar is in the upper right corner of this picture (I'm using a DP mod here, called Oxidized by Amplidude):

In the picture below, the Reshape Tool is selected (brightest yellow background).
Using the Reshape Tool:

The Reshape Tool can be used to insert continuous data as well as to reshape it. In Line Mode (more about Line Mode below), just draw in your line shapes. But you can constrain to certain shapes using the Reshape Tool Curve Palette:
Note the triangle shape which we will be using further down this tutorial, as it constrains the shapes we create with the Redraw Tool.

In the Reshape Tool Function Palette [aka: Reshape Mode], you can choose the way that the tool will affect existing data:

Next we switch to the MIDI Graphic Edit Window:

There are three display modes for the control points themselves. They are points, bars, and lines. You must understand how they work, or you might think that it's gone crazy on you. I'll demonstrate:

Image _____Image _____ Image

Ok, that seems simple enough. Why am I telling you about it? Because if you do not understand how these work, you may think that things have gone terribly haywire. Take a look at the square wave in the following example. It's the same square wave in each example, constrained to 32nd notes, but the different display modes give you quite different results:

Image _____ Image _____ Image

Here's an example of what is going on with LINES mode. It uses just a few control points to represent a LOT of control points.
Image -- Image

A lot of people never use LINES! I'm sad to think that such a powerful feature of DP for every day use is neglected! That's like neglecting graphic editing windows or something. Let me demonstrate:

Image -- Image

The Drawing Tools
So, now that we have the basics down, let's talk about techniques. The power of Control Point creation and editing lies in five keys: Shift, Command, Option, Control, and Escape*. They work a little differently here than in other places. Their basic functions are described on page 416 of the DP5 manual [Page 349 for DP7], but the description alone does not tell you how to use them. I'll give you some hints:

First of all: if you need to constrain the shapes to a grid, use the Edit Grid toggle.

Now, I'm going to constrain the Edit Grid to a Quarter Note and create a Triangle Wave over and over, but each time I'm going to add a modifier key until I'm using all four of them, to show how you can modify that wave. NOTE: the modifier keys do not make the choices for you.
First: draw a whole wave, without releasing the mouse.
Second: add the modifier key and drag backward or forward until the desired result is achieved.
Third: Once that key's job is done, release the key and continue dragging the mouse until you have completed your wave.
Also, note that the modifier keys are constrained by the Edit Grid if it is toggled on. The last step will de-toggle the grid with the COMMAND Key. Ok, here goes:

Image -- Image
Image -- Image
Image -- Image

And something extra
OK, let's take a look at what you can do with the CONTROL and SHIFT keys. This is only the beginning. The possibilities are endless.
Image -- Image

There. I hope I have re-established Digital Performer's place as the pre-eminent MIDI application, at least as far as drawing controller wave patterns is concerned! Other apps may do as good a job, but this DAW would be hard to beat!

The controls are simple yet powerful. When you get the hang of it, it's fast and becomes 2nd nature to you. Are we done? I think so.


*I forgot to mention that the Escape key--whose function it is to repeat the last wave form you created and save some creation time--is not working on my setup. It may be a bug, or it may be because I've co-opted the Escape key for something else. If it works for anyone else, please let me know. If it doesn't work, we should report it to MOTU.

[Edited April 25, 2010: added Toolbar and reshape tool instructions, how to make a triangle wave, etc.]
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Postby Shooshie » Sat Aug 19, 2006 2:06 pm

Working with Selections in MIDI
How to Select and Move Controllers and Notes Together, quickly and easily.

DP does a lot of things amazingly well, but some of its most powerful features are not apparent on the surface. Instead, they are buried in the intimidating "Commands Window" (SHIFT-L) where you can apply your own keyboard commands to hundreds of commands that simplify your work. I can hear someone thinking: "Simplify? It seems a lot more complicated this way. Why didn't they just put all these things in menus?" The answer becomes apparent when you see the sheer volume of the commands. Printed out, my Commands Window is a list that fills 28 pages. It's best to let each person find their own way and apply their own keyboard commands.

The following is a setup and demo for a workflow in which selection becomes too tedious to do with the mouse. We'll call this "Selection Workflow." Picture this scenario: You're working with a VI in which all the expressivity of the instruments depends on Continuous Controllers, whose data may be recorded in the same track as the MIDI notes, or it may be recorded in separate tracks. This could be Controller #11 -- Expression -- in MOTU Symphonic Instrument, or Controller #2 -- Breath Control -- in Mach Five, or it could be any of a half dozen or more controllers in a sophisticated VI like Vienna Symphonic Library (VSL), where controllers handle many aspects of the sound, including articulation, bowing, portamento, pitch, and other attributes.

Once you've recorded a track, you may need to edit a lot of notes. But selecting those notes AND their controllers becomes quite a chore. To put it mildly, it's just physically hard to do. For every note you select, there are multiple lines of controller data that must be selected precisely between the beginning and the end of the note--and there may be data extending before and/or after the note, as well. This may be located in more than one track (presumably adjacent to the main track with the notes). The mere thought of selecting all the data for even one note is enough to make you want to quit before you start. Maybe that note sounds fine right where it is, after all!

But there's hope. In fact, I'm going to show you how to select all that data in 1 to 4 seconds. Yes, the pictures you're about to see may take you 5 minutes to read and figure out, but the actual action which they describe can be done in just over an instant--as fast as you can tap out a key sequence in which the left hand holds the same keys for most of it, while the right hand taps the arrow keys.

In three strokes, you will have all the controllers in the main track selected precisely within the note boundaries. Another few strokes expands the selection to include any events that fall outside the note. Another few strokes grows the selection to adjacent tracks. On with the demonstration:

First, we have to set up the Commands Window. If you don't insert the same keyboard commands as I've used here, then my instructions will not work for you. You're welcome to use any keys you want, and "transpose" my instructions, but for the sake of clarity in the demo, let's assume you'll use the same keys that I've set in the highlighted lines in the " Selection" section of the Commands Window shown in Figure 1.

Figure 2 below illustrates the problem of controller data and notes that need to stay together,
and the difficulty of selecting them for that purpose:


By jumping to the previous track (fig. 3), we set up a situation for selecting all the controllers
in the front-most track when we return to it in the next action(fig. 4).


There was a control point in fig. 4 that did not make it into the selection,
a common occurrence. One keystroke fixes that, as shown in figure 5.
It may be necessary to repeat steps 3 & 4 to catch controllers if you've expanded your selection horizontally.

Hypothetically, we may want to expand our selection to include several notes/events.
Tabbing (fig. 6) gets you there quickly:

We now "grow" the selection to other tracks, if desired. You can remain in the
Multiple MIDI Graphic Editing Window for this, but the Tracks Overview Window in figure 7
illustrates what is happening. Our original selection from figure 6 was in the Clarinet track.
With a couple of keystrokes, it has been extended into tracks above it:

Figure 8 illustrates one of the many reasons I prefer the Multiple-track MIDI Graphic Editing
window for most of my MIDI editing. With selection tools like this at my disposal, I need a
window that gives me detail while allowing me access to all my tracks. Figure 8 shows
the same selection as figure 7, but the tracks are layered front to back rather than
bottom to top. The elapsed time for the actions demonstrated here is less than a few seconds.
It just takes familiarity, knowing where you're going and what you want to do, and practice.

This is just one example. There are 28 pages of customizable commands. One can create an efficient workflow in Digital Performer for just about any process that might be needed. Print out the Commands Window and study it even when you're away from your computer. This is where the power of DP outshines all the rest.

Last edited by Shooshie on Tue May 08, 2007 10:09 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Postby Kubi » Mon Aug 21, 2006 9:17 am

Thank you Sir! Amazingly helpful.

Recent tips by Shooshie

Postby soundsun » Mon Aug 21, 2006 5:38 pm

Hey Shooshie, these tips are great!

How much of them would apply to 4.61?
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Postby Shooshie » Tue Aug 22, 2006 4:59 am

Pretty much all of them. I don't recall any 5.0+ related tips among them. There may be one or two at the end of the 2nd part, but I don't remember them. There are some significant improvements in 5.0 through 5.1, so I hope to add some tips related to those. But the majority of the tips, and all of the demos with the screenshots, should be as relevant for 4.x as for 5.x.

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Postby Dwetmaster » Wed Aug 23, 2006 9:02 am

Is there a reason why any "move" and "move a little" are the same. What determines the increment (or decrement) they are supposed to be moving by.

Thanks Shooshie this is great stuff!!!
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