Considering using Renoise... 8 questions first


(Zer0 Fly) #17

Well, I tend to believe that tracker interfaces to note data lend to a different feeling when composing, especially when you are used to them for a while. I’ve also been a Fast Tracker kid, renoise is so damn close in look and feel, just much more powerful…

For me - the focus of tracker interface is stronger on the rythm, concurrency can make a whole lot of different sense visually, and it somehow really encourages microeditings as well as being able to keep track of the edits more naturally. Only thing I often miss in renoise is a linear sequencer where one can shift and especially name the clips that are sequenced. On the other hand renoise matrix model is pretty direct to work with, only a thin layer over the actual note data so to say. Renoise in its simplicity does put some strain and responsibility on the user that other daws would have more visual clues ready for the user. Also true for automations.

Seein your catalogue of expectations I feel a bit like…you are maybe going to be at least frustrated, if not even majorly pissed and fed up, at some point. Those are features that all major daws boast with, and that might be different or more rudimentary or overly complicated in renoise - compared to other progs.

Have you already played around with the demo, trying if it can accomplish what you need? I mean, it does everything, just not render/resample or rewire or asio. For me using renoise also means…having certain limitations imposed on my workflow, and constantly having to be creative in moving around them or even having to abandon ideas that simply aren’t possible with renoise due to technical limits. This can be frustrating at times, but just as well be stimulating to creativity and making one think about principles of things instead of just applying standard recipies.


(Lee B. James) #18

Thank you OopsIFly, that’s interesting. Do you think you could give me an example of the kind of incident where Renoise leaves you frustrated, or is not able to do what you want it to do?

I’m not interested in automation as I don’t like doing anything “live”.


(Raul (ulneiz)) #19

I’m not interested in automation as I don’t like doing anything “live”.

Just comment on a couple more things.If you are serious about composing orchestral music, there will come a time when you will use live recording using a MIDI keyboard, and you will also have to use the automation in some way.There is no other way to be expressive and fast at the same time in your compositions.

Live recording involves mapping your MIDI keyboard, and play in real time, at least the main melodies while the song plays.You can first compose rhythms manually in the pattern editor, and then melodies with the live recording. This will add velocity (volume) and delay in his live composition.Afterwards, you can make adjustments to modify the nuances.When you start with Reniose, when you are new, it is very difficult to use the live recording, seems a hidden feature, to discover.But I recognize that Renoise would not be the same without this great feature.

In electronic or experimental music everything is more “squared”. In the orchestral must be more expressive, more detailed, more varied, less squared, to sound a little more real, less artificial.To achieve this, the best is live recording and automation. These are the two main themes.Obviously, the major third is to find good libraries that sound good. But all the final work will get worse results.

As a curiosity, I see more and more members in the forums that use Renoise for orchestral music.This is great news for me. It makes me less feel isolated, and also demonstrates the versatility of Renoise, which also serves for orchestral music.It would only lack compatibility for video playback and time marking to be able to compose synchronized original soundtracks.

Also a big plus for me with Renoise is stability. While not crash free, it crashed less in over 10 years of usage than Tracktion 7 for me in like 2 or 3 months, and that includes alpha and beta releases of Renoise in the past. In Tracktion 7 i went as far as switching to a DirectX driver instead of using ASIO, because i got tired of rebooting my machine because my ASIO driver was locked. Also using Ableton Live for a bit now and that one managed to crash a few times on me as well, but it’s not as bad as Tracktion 7 was. It’s something a lot of people take for given, but after dabbling around with other hosts it’s really something you start to appreciate. In the end use whatever tool you feel comfortable working with, because that is what counts most. Get your ideas done to full songs and use the right tools to reach your goal, no matter what the fanboys say.

Yes, stability is actually expected in all programs, but it is not always so.With Renoise, I’ve only had problems with some VSTi/VST (Most of them are the fault of the VSTi/VST), and with the construction of tools with the code LUA, most of the time because I wrote something wrong, or I used some tool made by other users with some error.In the beginning, these are the two main causes of crashes.

However, we need an update of version 3.1 to cover some bugs.Most are errors that probocan malfunction, but do not crash.That is why it is very natural to ask for updates.They are always necessary.


(Zer0 Fly) #20

yes, examples of shortcomings…

One is the lack of sidechaining/multi input plugin support. You can do sidechain ducking and such with the renoise internal signal follower. But some VSTs just rely on using multiple audio inputs to combine them in some fashion, not only compressors. You simply cannot use such yet with renoise. Only multi-out VSTi plugins.

Automation - I also don’t record automations from my controller, where renoise is currently also quite weak in terms of resolution and when it comes to managing takes and inserting/overdubbing over existant automations. I like to set up graphs by hand, and tune them while the notes are looping until satisfied. It still is unnessecarily difficult, as you can only see one graph at a time, you cannot compare graphs next to each other, unless you open it up you have no clue what automation might be going on from the track or sequencer view, only if there is at all in the track, or none. And I have instruments going on that need 3-4 macros automated at the same time, maybe even in some sort of dialogue with another instrument with similarly complex modulations, where it often comes to the point of me only having the choices left of either ripping out my last hair or reaching for that revolver, or…

Also working with audio tracks is similarly hard, you can have an autoseeking sample, but only visual indication of what is going on is the single c-4 note in the track that starts the audio somewhere. It is fucking hard to align things properly without visual clues. There is no proper freeze/unfreeze mechanism.

I mean you can get things done in spite of these things. But maybe there’s just some points where…renoise is still more tracker than daw…and where you will have to use other programs in addition or even switch if your ambitions call for certain ways of solving problems.


(Lee B. James) #21

Raul ,

Thanks for that. And I would like to thank you for all your replies, and taking the time to give me helpful advice. I appreciate it and you have made me feel very welcome here. I am very enthusiastic about Renoise and looking foward to spending time here in this forum :slight_smile:

When I said I don’t want to do anything live, to clarify: I meant live mixing (ie automation). I do, of course, want to input certain parts live from my keyboard. Like piano parts. I’ve already bought my MIDI keyboard and I am a keen keyboard player.

I see more and more members in the forums that use Renoise for orchestral music.This is great news for me. It makes me less feel isolated, and also demonstrates the versatility of Renoise, which also serves for orchestral music.

Well you have more company here Raul, I am definitely into orchestral music. My style of music is very eclectic. I do a lot of pop style music, but the biggest projects I am working on are all highly orchestral - some of it is quite big and epic, and I’m going to want it to sound as natural as possible, not electronic. (I know it’s possible with good samples though right now I can’t afford the really good samples, so I’m starting small.)

It would only lack compatibility for video playback and time marking to be able to compose synchronized original soundtracks.

Yes, I checked whether Renoise handled video, and it’s a shame it doesn’t as I am interested in doing soundtracks. Though it’s not something I am planning to do too much of, so not a big deal.

If I ever get round to scoring a movie (a dream of mine) I figured out a way I could do it using Renoise…

My method for scoring films using Renoise

  1. First do the “spotting” to identify all the parts of the film which need music
  2. Then chop the video into smaller clips - only the parts which will have musical cues and nothing else.
  3. Export the audio of each clip and bring it into a corresponding Renoise file, with the clip’s audio starting at the very beginning of the song.
  4. Remove all the audio from the video clips.
  5. Also add 2 seconds of video to the start of each video, with 4 audio “clicks” (to serve as a count-in).
  6. To compose each cue, open both the movie clip and the corresponding Renoise file side-by-side
  7. Play the video and you’ll hear 4 clicks, then on the 5th click, hit play in Renoise - the audio and video should play in sync (note that synchronization doesn’t have to be completely precise when you’re scoring)

I also have a couple more Questions about Renoise…

(I know I could look these things up, but it would be helpful if anyone could give me a quick answer to save me searching…)

  1. I know you can set volume and panning with effects commands, but is it also possible to draw volume envelopes over tracks, or draw lines to specify panning?

  2. Let’s say I make a tune with a piano playing over a drum beat. Normally I would set the drum beat first, then play the piano over it, so the two are more or less perfectly synched, and I can make slight adjustments to the piano. But what if I’d recorded the piano first and then wanted to merge it with a rhythmical drum beat that uses a completely different temp. Can Renoise let me select part of a track and change its speed - changing the notes and delays, without changing the tune’s tempo?

OopsIFly,

That is all really useful information, thanks. At this stage, I really want to be aware of both the benefits and shortcomings of the software, so I know what’s possible. Thanks :slight_smile:

Inputs/sidechaining
As I think I’ve indicated, I’m more of a classical type composer than a dance/electronica kind of producer, so things like inputs, outputs and sidechaining are not the most important things to me when I’m “composing music”. But having said that, ducking is something I typically like to use a lot of for general audio editing (I do a lot of video work) especially with vocals. It’s almost second nature to me: first I set the level of backing which goes under a vocal, then I set the level of “ducked backing” which plays in the gaps.

Autoseeking
Ah, that’s interesting. I was going to ask if Renoise did autoseeking, so you’ve answered my question, thanks. If Renoise didn’t have autoseeking, that might have been a dealbreaker for me. Any kind of long orchestral score is impossible without it.

Aligning audio/lack of waveforms
I definitely know what you mean about having no visual cues of what is happening in each track.

One advantage DAWs have over trackers is that you can see the waveform.

I haven’t even downloaded Renoise yet but already I’ve been having a play at imagining how I would like to see notes and waveforms on the tracker. In fact I have just posted a new thread about this…

https://forum.renoise.com/t/waveform-piano-roll-idea/47624


(lettuce) #22

I thought it was french at first, like “noisette”, or “châteaux de renois”.

When using a piano-roll based DAW its annoying to keep track of everything. if your jumping three octaves you have to scroll up and down a lot, but with trackers its much more compact, efficient and stylish (going from C-0 to C-7 doesn’t require any scrolling at all) and renoise is not some run of the mill tracker.

Personally, I think if renoise had audiotracks it would lay the smack down on almost every other DAW…for those people who want to record vocals or guitar tracks.


(Lee B. James) #23

Thanks for the reply Garrett. Do you still play the clarinet? :slight_smile:

Personally, I think if renoise had audiotracks it would lay the smack down on almost every other DAW

Yes, though for now a big improvement would just to be able to see the waveforms. If you could check out my waveform idea, and maybe “like” it, maybe it will encourage the developers to go down this route. https://forum.renoise.com/t/waveform-piano-roll-idea/47624)..)


(Cie) #24

• I generally prefer step sequencing (inputting tunes note-by-note)

Maybe you like to checkout the Lauflicht Step Sequencer plugin then :slight_smile:

http://www.renoise.com/tools/step-sequencer-lauflicht


(Raul (ulneiz)) #25

  1. I know you can set volume and panning with effects commands, but is it also possible to draw volume envelopes over tracks, or draw lines to specify panning?

  2. Let’s say I make a tune with a piano playing over a drum beat. Normally I would set the drum beat first, then play the piano over it, so the two are more or less perfectly synched, and I can make slight adjustments to the piano. But what if I’d recorded the piano first and then wanted to merge it with a rhythmical drum beat that uses a completely different temp. Can Renoise let me select part of a track and change its speed - changing the notes and delays, without changing the tune’s tempo?

  1. Yes, Reniose has an “Automation Editor Panel” in the lower area.Any parameter of any effect added in the effects chain for each track can be automated from the Automation Editor, using point curves.This is magnificent. However, many customers have already protested that the Automation Editor needs to be drastically improved! This editor is too simple, very basic, and slows down the speed of composition each time it is used.But with a little patience and learning, you can automate virtually everything.I recommend automating at the end of the composition.
  2. I think it is not possible.Perhaps there is a shared a tool to help with this work.It is best to be able to play live to record a new tune, synchronized with the definitive tempo. For that, You can proceed in 2 ways, for example:
  1. In Options Menu, activate “Metronome Precount Enabled” preference. This Metroneme start before the play.

  2. Or you can create 4 new patterns initially, for play a rhythm of percussion, and start live recording on pattern number 5.So take the pace mentally to start.

To change the individual tempo per track, you have no choice but to do it manually, moving note by note.I think I remembered that this was discussed in the forums. I do not know if there is a tool.However, given my knowledge with LUA, I think it is possible to build a simple tool with a bit of math, copy, paste, and create news patterns.But I’m sure adding a lot of delay parameters for each note in the modified track and I do not like that.

You have not bought a license from Renoise yet? What are you waiting for? :slight_smile:

In the next version is possible the addition of GUI for hight resolutions, and maybe a new version of Automation Editor Panel, This topic has been much discussed in the forums lately, and would be a very logical step:

  1. GUI for hight resolutions (this is a “half confirmed topic” for the next important version).
  2. Best Automation Editor Panel (this should be considered an obligation! But there is nothing confirmed).

ThisAutomation Editor Panel, could use layer overlay or several windows stacked to be able to contrast different curves of automations.With regard to pianorroll, I prefer not to comment any more, I think it could be a more integrated tool within the pattern editor, for the display of blocks of notes, a visual aid with basic editing capability, rather than a complete note editor (pianorroll).


(Lee B. James) #26

Maybe you like to checkout the Lauflicht Step Sequencer plugin then :slight_smile:

http://www.renoise.com/tools/step-sequencer-lauflicht

Thanks for this, but I think I have got my terms confused. When I said I want step sequencing, I just meant to be able to enter my melodies 1 note at a time, rather than playing everything in real time - that’s how all trackers work. I thought that was called step sequencing, but perhaps not.


(Lee B. James) #27
  1. Yes, Reniose has an “Automation Editor Panel” in the lower area.

That’s great! I’ve just looked it up and this is exactly what I wanted :slight_smile:

I’ve just realized that I didn’t know what “automation” meant. I thought it’s when you make live adjustments, and the computer remembers it. But in fact “automation” just means envelopes.

Ideally I would have liked the automation to be actually ON the sequencer, rather than in a separate window. Then I could see everything all together. I wonder if I’m alone in wanting this?

Adjusting the speed of a selection

It’s a shame there’s no way to adjust the speed of a selection. I was hoping to import a few MIDI parts and mix them together. But I can’t do that unless I can adjust their speed.

I am thinking of submitting this as a feature request: the ability to adjust the speed of a selection. It would seem like a very useful and powerful feature which is very easy for the developers to implement, since it’s just basic calculation.

You have not bought a license from Renoise yet? What are you waiting for? :slight_smile:

I’m sure I will do, but taking it slow. I haven’t even started using the demo yet. I am quite a slow, thoughtful man. and like to think everything through carefully before moving forward. Also I am very poor. £70 may be cheap for a DAW, but it’s still not something I can afford to spend without being sure.

  1. GUI for hight resolutions (this is a “half confirmed topic” for the next important version).

High resolutions don’t apply to me, my monitor is 1440 x 900. I’d love a full HD monitor but can’t afford one right now.


(Cie) #28

Adjusting the speed of a selection

It’s a shame there’s no way to adjust the speed of a selection. I was hoping to import a few MIDI parts and mix them together. But I can’t do that unless I can adjust their speed.

You can set the tempo/speed anywhere in the pattern using the command

if you mean this.

See effect command list

http://tutorials.renoise.com/wiki/Effect_Commands


(Lee B. James) #29

You can set the tempo/speed anywhere in the pattern using the command

Thank you but no, those are global commands, I’m not talking about changing the speed of the music, I’m talking about changing the speed a selection plays at - expanding and contracting the notes and changing the delays.

Let’s say I record a short piano riff to go into my song, but I record it a little slower than the song’s tempo. When I paste it into my song, it’s a little too slow and I need to squash it slightly to match the speed of the song.

Or let’s say I recorded two different versions of a song at different tempos, and I want to take tracks from both and combine them together.

Surely I should just be able to select any section of music and make adjustments to the speed it plays? To me this seems like a basic function.

Or, another application is, let’s say I have a track with arpeggio notes playing every quarter note, and I simply want to hear how it sounds with third notes instead of quarter notes? I should just be able to select my notes and stretch it by 33% so the notes become thirds.


(fladd) #30

You could put it into a phrase.


(Lee B. James) #31

(Just to note I’ve changed my avatar - thought I would use my own photo instead of being all anonymous :slight_smile: )

You could put it into a phrase.

Hey thanks, I didn’t know about phrases - in other words, nested tracks. :slight_smile:

It’s nowhere near a perfect solution, but definitely is a solution! (I assume a phrase can have a different tempo to the main song.)


(Raul (ulneiz)) #32

Hey thanks, I didn’t know about phrases - in other words, nested tracks. :slight_smile:

It’s nowhere near a perfect solution, but definitely is a solution! (I assume a phrase can have a different tempo to the main song.)

I have not tried it, but I think you will have the same problem with the phrases. It will be necessary to “stretch” or “contract” each note.Phrases should be in the same measure as in the pattern editor.

I think the only feasible solution is to create a tool that doessomething like that:

  1. Select multiple rows of a track with the mouse (obviously, having written notes).
  2. In the tool a option to use a variable number to increase or decrease the distance between notes.I suppose there may be a match between distance of patterns and BPM and LPB values.Thus, there could be time specific values between two notes, to use as a basis.
  3. When changing the value in the tool, use a modify compass button.In this way, the notes are automatically separated or contracted, depending on the case.The truth is I think I have seen a tool that already does this. Or something similar.

I am interested in this subject. It could serve to double or quadruple the number of rows in a same composition, to have greater resolution in each pattern, involves growing or reducing the number of rows in the pattern.

Note :In the phrases you can change the LPB (resolution, Lines Per Beat), not the BPM (tempo, Beats Per Minute).The problem is the BPM.


(Lee B. James) #33

Raul,

Glad to know I’m not the only one who thinks this would be a useful tool. :slight_smile: It wouldn’t be too difficult to code - it’s just simple calculations.

The tool would use delays to create an exact transformation of the speed of the music, allowing you to make really slight adjustments to a track’s playing speed which would be particularly useful for combining tracks from different sources or different recording “takes”.

You could also use it to quickly convert a sequence of notes into “triplets” (eg 3 notes per 4 beats). That’s something I often have to do in trackers.

There could also be a “rough mode” which only moves the notes to the nearest whole line, without using delays?

I know you said you don’t like having lots of delays in your music. I agree in a way. For most of my music I like to be precise and have no delays. But for certain tracks, like a “flowing” piano track, I like it to be completely smooth and natural, and the delays make it sound more “organic”. Plus the delays can always be deleted.

"Reduce delays" tool?

Was also thinking it would be good to have a tool which lets you select a bunch of notes which have delays and you can drag a slider to “reduce the delays” which moves the notes closer to the nearest whole line. If you slide it all the way down to 0% then the notes jump completely to the nearest whole line and the delays vanish. I don’t suppose there is already a tool like that in Renoise?

Sorry if I am asking too many questions!


(Zer0 Fly) #34

Lee look for “nudge” in the advanced editor. Or quantisation to remove the delays or to restrict them to certain measures. To nudge phrases, there was probably an oversight that the a.e. isn’t available there, but you can copy/paste to pattern and then nudge. I also believe there were tools to note nudge/shift in other/more sophisticated ways?


(danoise) #35

Yes, as Raul points out, phrases work on LPB - which are whole number ratios.

This works for playing a phrase in double tempo, dotted/triplet (1/3, 2/3, 3/1, 3/2 - and so on) - but you can’t set the phrase to play with a separate BPM. So, no 126 bpm slowly drifting away from 128 bpm (or whatever the tempo is in Steve Reichs Piano Phase :))

However…

The tool would use delays to create an exact transformation of the speed of the music, allowing you to make really slight adjustments to a track’s playing speed which would be particularly useful for combining tracks from different sources or different recording “takes”.

Yes, I believe you gentlemen are looking for the Flexible Pattern Resizer:

https://forum.renoise.com/t/new-tool-2-8-3-0-flexible-pattern-resizer/30664

Works on a pattern basis…so if you need to resize just a part of a pattern, use the built-in “split and join pattern” feature.

Split: Pattern Editor > rightclick > Pattern > Split

Join: Pattern Sequence > rightclick > Organize > Join

If you want to record multiple takes and select the best one:

http://www.renoise.com/tools/auto-clone-patterns <- essential tool if you ask me, allows you to “endlessly record” on top of a looped pattern sequence

http://www.renoise.com/tools/noodletrap/ <-- allows you to record into phrases instead of pattern.


(Raul (ulneiz)) #36

Yes, I believe you gentlemen are looking for the Flexible Pattern Resizer:

https://forum.renoise.com/t/new-tool-2-8-3-0-flexible-pattern-resizer/30664

Works on a pattern basis…so if you need to resize just a part of a pattern, use the built-in “split and join pattern” feature.

Split: Pattern Editor > rightclick > Pattern > Split

Join: Pattern Sequence > rightclick > Organize > Join

Yes,I knew there was a tool! :slight_smile: In fact, I already had downloaded, but I have not yet had the need to use it seriously…

Maybe rescue some theme of new age in IT format (Impulse Tracker) to convert, and this tool is useful also.Surprisingly I have very old themes saved in diskette :o.

Thanks for the info!