First Encounter With Renoise

Well, coming from Madtracker, my first encounter with Renoise 1.8 has been like : :blink: :dribble: :w00t:

This was a few days ago, since then I’ve been running trough the entire online manual, and, to be honest, I’m still really enthusiastic about Renoise. But the “tutorials” left me with a list of questions, wich I give you jumbled, if you have time to answer :

  • What is “DC” (DC Offset, DC-line, DC-Axis…) ? Dead Crumb ?
  • And actually, could you give me a clear definition of what is an “offset” for you ? My eng-fr dictionnary gives me pointless tanslation of this word, and Google searches weren’t less confusing me.
  • How many steps of undo are kept in memory ?
  • What is a quantization ?

I don’t understand the use of some functions/buttons, or even what they do :

  • In the Audio Preferences, there’s a “Dither” checkbox. What’s that doing ?
  • Just under the last, “DC Filter”… Same question. The wiki is not precise enough.
  • While we are at it, “Soft Clipping” seems to be a nice option, but there is no recomandation wether to use it or not, in wich case, for what reason…
  • In the sample editor, the “Cross Fade” button. The wiki says about it : “Mirror sample accross DC-Axis”, but for me it does a real strange thing that doesn’t correspond to… anything. Oh yes, I’ve found ! It kind of makes a copy of the sample or selection, reverses it (along the DC axis ??), then multiplies it with the original wave. Neat ! Err… What’s it used for ? Actually, I expected it to make a fading point in the middle of the selection.
  • In the sample editor, the “center sample to the DC-line” button. Seems pointless to me.
  • The “Cross reverse stereo channels” button. What’s it designed for ?

Thank you !

I will try to answer some of your questions (I am at work and dont have time to go into great detail, so can someone else fill in where I left off)

  1. Quantization= This is the way that a computer automatically forces things to go into a certain position.

Imagine if you are playing some notes on a keyboard, and recording them in to a peice of music software. Now imagine you are not the best player in the world and your timing is bad. Well if you “quantize” the notes will be forced to sit in the correct position.

This can be used for many things in computing (and computer music).

Basically imagine an invisible grid which things have to “align” (sorry) to.

  1. Undo: I beleive that ALL of the steps are stored in memory :)

  2. Offset in terms of computer music just means “move away from the centre”

  3. Dither: This button is used to reduce all of your samples to 16bit 44100hz. If you make a song with loads of different types of samples (32bit/24bit/16bit/8bit etc) then it will not work on a CD player. You have to Dither the final song down to 16bit for it to work.

Basically, don`t use this button unless you are rendering the final song.

Hope this helps a bit.

Someone else can explain the rest! I have kids to teach. hoho

DC refers back to an old electronics term: Direct Current, as opposed to Alternating Current (AC). How does this relate to the sound? When there are NO sounds going on, the voltage of the signal line (in any circuit) is flat, so the same as 0volts DC. Everything above that center line is + voltage, and below is - voltage.

Offset is how far the signal is away from the DC center of 0. Sometimes old samples have weird emphasis too much in the + or - :So you need to center them to get the most of the amplitude, if necessary. Excessive emphasis in the + or - can destroy speakers - speakers like symmetrical sound so that they come to rest at 0 voltage when there is no sound. Imagine if they were pushed out for a long time constantly! You’d smell them burning!

Infinite as far as I know is this latest version. Check here.

I think in Renoise this simply means that midi input is coarsely interpreted into notes per-line rather than per-tick. It will mean your input notes will always hit on time with the sequencer.

AFAIK when you are RENDERING you mix (which is done in 32bit while you’re working on it) down to 16bit or 24bit then dithering is an option to introduce a mathematical noise function in order to smooth the sound for the lower definition. There are many methods and some people prefer it, others do not.

Referring to the DC center line as before, this option will automatically ‘center’ your master channel so that the audio is biased equally between + and - . The audio will be symmetrical allowing for the most head-room in the mastering process (after your song mixing).

Some Renoise users run their mix pretty hot, i.e. loud enough for the master signal to clip (distort) on the maximum digital range of the audio channel. Some people prefer this sound (I don’t btw) and use the ‘soft clip’ function to smooth the said distortion sound. Again, it may protect your ears and speakers if you’re running a hot mix.

Not sure of this one… Don’t use the function.

As discussed with DC offset… Old samples often need this sort of processing on them.

Not sure! Sounds cool! Try it out and see what it does!

Haha, wormjar types faster than me!

I believe this is the onl yquesiton left unanswered:

cross reverse acts on stereo samples and reverses along DC axis (id est: the “Horizontal axis”) each channel, then swap them.

It should reverse the stereo ambience

These are clear and interesting explanations, thanks to all four of you ! :)

Umm, it looks like it is only reversing and swaping the first half of the left channel with the second half of the right channel. So it’s only usable for samples wich have similar amplitude at the beginning and the end (otherwise you end up with an unbalanced stereo sample). And sadly, it introduces a clip.

The DC-explanations were really useful to me too, actually. :)
Funny how I never thought of those terms in detail before… Really interesting read!

Nice thread! Proves we all want to help here.

Such a nice forum. :)

Yeah, anything which is implemented and doesnt quite work is a bit dodgy… BUT…

When would you ever use such a feature?

I know I would’nt.

If I’m not misstaken the easiest practical way to check if you have DC offset problems is to listen to the song in MONO.
If you get sound cancelation it could mean you have DC offset problems.

If you take a stereo sample which has a bad DC offset and convert it mono, you simply get a mono sample with bad DC offset. Maybe you’re thinking of phase cancellation? It’s a similar thing but not really what people are referring to when they talk about DC offset.

As foo has already mentioned, a DC offset is when the signal deviates from the center in either the positive or negative phase. If you have a sample with a big DC offset, you will get a noticeable click when the sample begins and also when it ends. You will probably also have a drastically reduced dynamic range.




I hoped you could tell me this. :D

Yeah, you’re right I mixed the two togehter ;)