Automation Envelope Ideas

Hey folks, I posted this idea a while ago but I didn’t have a picture and I guess most people didn’t understand what I meant. So here is a mockup to illustrate the idea:

The idea is that whenever you start a new automation envelope, a “virtual” fx column is created for just that effect (only 2 digits). Then you can either enter values using your mouse in the automation window, or just type them into the column. You can also toggle modes by clicking the little icon (cubic, linear, points).

The benefit of this system is that you can set your automation points very precisely (exact XX values) and you can copy and paste parts of your envelopes (keith303 :D).

I just thought of this, but if you’re worried that this will clutter the pattern editor, perhaps there can be a button somewhere that toggles vieweing these on and off (like the volume/panning columns).



I like this idea very much! There have been lots of ideas how to link the automation and pattern editor - some good, some bad, but this is by far the best so far.

This would only be a different way of visualizing the automation, so it shouldn’t introduce any new problems with pattern commands and automation conflicting. But it is a bit wierd that they aren’t linked as you said, Bantai.

Thanks for the idea.
The only thing I dont get or see is: How does one see, which parameter the envelope value corresponds to ? Is only the envelope that you currently editing in the automationview visible in the patterneditor ? That would be half the fun.

The only trouble i see here is that X would never reach higher than F (which is 16 decimal) while you can go up to 20 ticks.
Unless we still are going to add letters to the system to create a DoubleDecimal system. (or something like that)

taktik: I’ve been thinking about this, and it seems like a tricky problem. It would be best if you could see all the automation columns at once, but there doesn’t seem to be enough room to label each column for the parameter it edits. (Maybe Tooltips?)

For sure if the automation editor is open they should just correspond to whatever you are editing (e.g. if you click on the EQ automation envelope, the EQ column gets hilighted a color). I think if you are in trackDSP mode, perhaps the slider for the column you are editing gets hilighted? And if in any other mode, I guess it’s just hard to tell which is which?

Bantai: I didn’t know the envelopes were more precise than 256 values… but it seems when you edit with a mouse, anyhow, you’re going to be way less precise than that anyway. So couldn’t you just convert a 0-FF value to whatever scale the automation envelope uses?

If you have any better ideas, that would be great! : D


Ticks are the horizontal resolution and automation is line based like the pattern, so I think you are mixing things up here. As bantai said there need to be more digits to match the vertical resolution of automation values. Adding letters like OctaMED had was never a favorite of mine. It’s all just so confusing that I’d rather waste precious pattern space.

You can drag the points with ctrl+left mouse to set more precise values. You can also see on the sliders that they have 3 decimals. Ranging from 0% to 100% that’s 100000. Maybe more for some sliders.

As I understood it, the reason Automation envelopes are more precise is because they calculate all the “in between” values for the ticks. e.g. if you are going from 00 to 10 in the FX column, over pattern of length 40, your envelope “steps” up 1 value at a time. With the automation envelope, it is smooth. I didn’t think that the endpoints (between where the lines are drawn) were that much more accurate in the Automation envelope…

I totally agree with you Bantai that the ideal solution is to figure out a way that track FX and automation can be the same thing. The problem is that automation allows for points (like column FX) but also it can connect two points with a line or a curve of values. If automation and track FX are combined, there needs to be a way to specify whether automation should “slide up” to a track FX value, or whether it should change suddenly (the way one would expect). This is also more troublesome because the way you read track FX currently (as I understand it) is instantaneous as the song is played. If track FX and automation were connected, you’d have to “read ahead” to the next point value so you can slide up/down to it in time…

Anyway, this is good discussion hopefully we can come up with a good solution soon!


I don’t know if i mix up things…
Each vertical line represents a row in the matrix.
And each row is still devided in ticks. So i figured if X supposed to be the horizontal timing, then X represents ticks and Y represents the factor value of the automation parameter.
Automation has not the same devision in lines as the envelope curve.

Aha… I see. I just assumed XY was a 2 digit value from 0-255 of the automated slider, that’s why I didn’t understand what you meant…

On the subject of the graphical automation editor, a small but helpful feature I’d like to see implemented would be a “snap to” option when creating/moving points vertically in the automation curve.

There’d be a snap amount value that you could edit which would be a % of the vertical scale. So for example, setting it to 25% would divide the automation’s vertical scale into 5 possible snap positions; 0%, 25%, 50%, 75% and 100%, and the points you edit would automatically jump to the nearest value. It would be almost identical to the way it currently works on the horizontal scale, where the points automatically snap to the pattern row numbers.

In situations where I create automations which span multiple patterns this would come in very handy. For example, if I have a filter on a track which I want to open up slowly over several patterns:

Pattern 01 :: 0% - 25%
Pattern 02 :: 25% - 50%
Pattern 03 :: 50% - 75%

I’m quite picky about getting those exact values, hehe, so it can sometimes be a bit of a pain in the ass fiddling about with the automation points, slowly putting them exactly where I want them for each pattern. Being able to snap the points to specific values quickly and easily would be very cool. :P


Or maybe what would be more useful than a % value, would be a “divide by” value, then you could break up the vertical scale into however many pieces you need to work with. That would be a bit easier than calculating the % you might need to use, and it would also take care of weird non-integer values. For example, “divide by 3” is a bit friendlier than putting in “33.33%”.

And maybe the background grid could change to show the new settings you’re using?

A quick visual example:…omationsnap.gif

Bumping a nine years old topic, but hey - why not :)

What dblue suggested would be awesome.