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Topic: Mod wheel problems ... please help!

  1. #1

    Question Mod wheel problems ... please help!

    I'm having a strange problem in both Garageband (version 5.1) and Logic (version 8.0) ... any ideas would be most appreciated!

    My setup:

    M-audio Oxygen61 keyboard
    Macbook Pro
    2.66GHz Intel Core i7
    8GB 1067 MHz DDR 3
    OS X version 10.6.4

    The problem:

    When using the mod wheel to control dynamics, playback (after recording) is screwy. For instance, if I record two seconds of audio, upon playback the first second might have no sound, then somewhere in the middle the sound will abruptly cut in.

    All data is being transferred (in the score view, all the notes are there) but not all is played back. If I have two tracks going, sometimes one plays back as entered, and the other cuts in at a random moment ... and sometimes both tracks have the problem.

    The exact nature of the problem (i.e. when the sound cuts in or drops off) seems to be different every time I play a given example back. Sometimes all the notes play, but the dynamic drops or rises sharply at random moments (and not in a smooth crescendo, as was played).

    This problem doesn't seem to creep up if I record something without manipulating the mod wheel. I'm not manipulating the mod wheel during playback, so if it's interfering with playback I'm not sure why, or how to fix it. Even if I turn the keyboard off after recording, the problem is still there upon playback.

    I've already made sure I have the latest versions of everything (GPO, Garageband, keyboard drivers) except of course Logic, which is version 8.

    Needless to say this is very frustrating. Thanks in advance for any help/advice!

  2. #2

    Re: Mod wheel problems ... please help!

    Hi Sam,

    Is it specific to GPO, or does the problem affect other synths as well? What happens if you mute one of the tracks? Does the other play back without trouble? If the notes of track 1 are sending on channel 1 and those of track 2 are sending on channel 2, have you checked to see that the modwheel data from each is also sending on the proper channel? Sometimes mod data will record in on channel 1, even if the keyboard channel is changed (keyboard-specific).

  3. #3

    Re: Mod wheel problems ... please help!

    Too much information. In other words, you might be sending more midi information than your DAW can cope with at one go. A mod wheel worked continuously generates a large amount of data, all of which has to be passed through the processor. I've had this problem on both my machines, so I think it might be more common than reported.
    Things may come and things may go but the art school dance goes on forever
    NOW WITH Cubase 5, JABB,GPO, Fender Strat, Ibanez RG, Yamaha Fretless Bass, Framus Archtop, The Trumpet and Mr T Sax, together with GREEN SEALING WAX

  4. #4

    Re: Mod wheel problems ... please help!

    Thanks for responding ... !

    Reegs, I will have to check if it affects other synths when I get home. (Since GB Jam Packs use velocity for dynamic, I've never tried the mod wheel with them. Plus I avoid them in favor of GPO.) I know for sure that if I mute a track, the problem persists. If I lock a track, the problem persists. I'm not exactly sure how to confirm the mod data is sending on the proper channel, so that's another thing I'll have to figure out when I get home tonight.

    Buckshead, thanks for your comment and I respect your experience which is greater than mine ... but I guess I'm confused how a top of the line laptop could choke on merely two tracks with literally just a few brief seconds of audio. If this is the case, how in the world does "Knights and Magic" sound so good on the demo page? Doesn't every track in that example contain massive mod wheel data? In your opinion was such an example created on a ridiculously expensive system (like a 12-core Mac Pro or something), and that systems within a more realistic budget are basically SOL?

    I'll keep searching for a solution, but in the meantime I'm wondering whether to get a different keyboard or move to a different DAW ... I'm not tied to this rig (other than the laptop), just want to compose orchestral music ...

    Thanks again to both of you for helping. If anything else occurs to you, please let me know.


  5. #5

    Re: Mod wheel problems ... please help!

    GPO doesn't choke on controller data on a MacBook, in my experience (30+ tracks, all using CC data). Logic is a complex beast. It can "chase" controller values (there is a setting for that), which makes sure that the controllers are set to the value just before the point your start playback. Logic also resets the plugins (on the stop command, I think), so Aria player will regularly be reset. I think that your "chase" options are off for appropriate controller. I think you'll find them under Logic Settings > MIDI > Chase > Controller Changes.

  6. #6

    Re: Mod wheel problems ... please help!

    Thanks Theo for weighing in. Unfortunately for some reason Logic won't even start up. I'll have to try reinstalling sometime after I find my backup disc (just recently moved and lots of things still in boxes).

    I've made a bit more progress diagnosing the problem in Garageband ... if I look at the modulation curve data, it turns out I was wrong -- not all of it is being picked up, for some reason. If I manually draw in the missing parts of the curve on a track already recorded, it plays as intended.

    Of course, this is still an extra step I shouldn't have to be doing ... everything I'm doing is supposedly controllable from the keyboard ... I don't want to have to manually draw mod curves on every track I record.

    Thanks again to everybody for trying to help. If anything occurs to you before I throw my entire rig out the window, please let me know

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