Audio Track Workflows In Renoise

Despite the limitations with using audio tracks in renoise, I think a few users here have been fairly successful incorporating longer audio tracks into renoise mixes. I’m interested in other users workflow patterns for things like

  • Workflow patterns for organizing many tracks (i.e. more than 10 channels of audio tracks)

  • Workflow patterns for doing lots of overdubs quickly

  • keeping track of which channels are playing which audio tracks in the absense of a track waveform as a visual cue

  • Workflow for bouncing audio tracks? (I’m a fan of the render-selection-to-sample shortcut, but I wish it worked across multiple patterns)

Probably the best approaches to some of these problems is rewiring to another daw, but I’d still like to learn from other users how I might push more of this work into the renoise box…

Longer audio clips are critical to my music. Your points in order:

  1. I work at 96khz so my audio files are large. I only have 2gb of RAM, so I run out of RAM quickly with the way Renoise organises the audio. If the song starts exceeding about 80mb I have to start using a ReWired Reaper session. Carefully rendering and labelling of ‘stems’ help.

  2. Overdubs are not easy for me in Renoise. If I want to punch in a synced pattern recording I have to redo the whole pattern or use multiple recordings and edits. Again, much easier to do in Reaper.

  3. A combination of clear channel labelling, carefully selected colours, channel position and outright thinking prevents one from getting lost. If in doubt, start soloing.

  4. I solo the channels I want to make into a ‘stem’, inclusive of sends if required, and then position them in a Reaper project as described above.

If I had a better computer with a whole lote more RAM I could get away with doing all this in Renoise - but even then some processes are clunky compared to Reaper. I’m quite content to use both platforms together for their relative strengths, which are unquestionably formidable.

Yeah reaper is probably the way to go. It’s a reasonable compromise, although my ideal would be to stay within an environment since I find there’s a bit of a switching cost in terms of concentration, navigation going to muscle memory, etc.

Another thing that also gets in the way with renoise is that even with a lot of memory, saving starts to take too long when you have lots of long audio files. I think it’s manageable if you just have a single vocal track (like on that hunz album everyone keeps citing), but it breaks down when you’re working with multiple takes or have several tracks of live instruments in addition to lead vocals and backing vocal stacks.

I’m toying with some lua scripting ideas for my personal use to make things better - to do things like rapid bouncing to a new instrument across multiple patterns, automating the splitting of an audio track into pattern sized chunks, automating switching of the autoseek flag. Gotta have some free time to work on it though. One point of reference I think about is the OP-1. Even though the memory on that thing is wimpy (4 tracks and 6 minutes), the right workflow can make it very feasible to do some really productive live recording work within tight memory constraints.


If you mine through the Ideas forum most of these elements have been suggested and debated. So in the case of the Devs, I think it is safe to say they have their head around the issue. Whatever may be done about it will reflect a philosophical choice about ‘what sets Renoise apart’ rather than just keeping up with technical requests.

I can answer two of the questions because I think my tracks aren’t well organized.

I am accustomed to recording phrases at a time and making many takes of a phrase quickly. Play the harmony of that phrase in the same session and there are your overdubs.

Since working with phrases at a time means bite-sized samples, they can be named, in the case of a vocal, after their lyrics, or inan instrument, after the phrase played.

There is a freeze track script that may help you with"bouncing" but that’s not something I’ve wanted to do yet.