"insert" Key On Mac Keyboard?

So maybe this a complete newbie question, but I recently switched my platform to all Mac. I have a nice external keyboard (with numpad) and as far as I can tell, I have no way to “insert” a new row in the pattern editor. So easy on a PC while just pressing “insert” that I never thought this would be an issue.

I’ve done some research online and the new Mac keyboards have the “fn” key (next to home), which replaced the previous “Help” button, which replaced “Insert” some time ago.

The “fn” key does not work this way.

According to the keyboard shortcut list for Mac, I should be using the HelpKey(Insert) for this:


When I go to my keymapping in Renoise, it says the same thing. Trying to assign a new key and pressing the “fn” key by itself does nothing.

Any Renoise Mac users that can shed some light on this? I see no other way of inserting a row and it’s been extremely frustrating.

Thanks much!

~ JS

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On a Mac keyboard the fn-key is just a modifier key, much like the shift, ctrl or alt keys. I don’t remember what the combination for insert is, though… If it has something to do with the fn, it would be fn+some key.

Edit: according to this for example, it seems to be fn+enter.

Yeah I know it’s a modifier, but all the data on the web points to this being the “replacement” for the insert key.

Either way, I did assign row insert in the pattern editor to fn-f14, but it would be nice to know what the official keybinding is for Renoise…since there is no longer a “help” or “insert” key. I assume there are many Mac-renoisers out there who know this.

I’ve tried lots and lots of combos using fn-something, nothing works so far…

~ JS

I use a Macbook for work and Windows/Linux for the rest. Each time I use the Mac and MacOS, I end thinking that their designers thought that computer users do not use keyboards at all

I’ve got a PC keyboard hooked up to my Mac so I’ve got an Insert key, but it doesn’t behave as advertised; Command-Insert inserts a pattern, but Insert on its own seems to do nothing.

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i’ve done the same thing as elbiggus here but that’s not a real solution. try remapping it in the renoise preferences to a key you don’t use.
as far as I know you can’t remap fn key because it’s special.

Yeah I’ve already remapped to fn-f14, which works fine. But I can’t believe Renoise is basically unusable in its native Mac state. How else does one insert rows in a pattern?

Either way, I’ve got a workaround, but maybe the developers might want to look into the modern Mac key-mapping. Lots of people like me are switching from PC to Mac.

~ JS

I have a Mac and I deliberately still use an “old” Apple-keyboard. Hence, the help-key exists and inserts a row in a pattern when I press it. Just saying… but I agree, once I get a new keyboard I’ll run into the same problemo too. So, thanks for the heads up.

I’ve mapped § to be insert for OSX. works decent.
ended up buying a regular Apple Keyboard just to have numpad, insert-home-end-etc and, here was the real reason: it had 2 additional usb ports! :)

some have used KeyRemap4MacBook to switch stuff around.

EDIT: Just to clarify, KeyRemap4MacBook became something called Karabiner-Elements - so install it from https://karabiner-elements.pqrs.org

Wont it only be a USB hub, mostly likely of USB1.1 speed, not even USB2, as that is what most keyboards operate at. May be good enough for what you need but wouldn’t call it a huge selling point…

most likely my ass!
the apple keyboard (since i use wire-versions, since wireless/bluetooth are p o x y technologies) has 2 usb ports which are both at usb2.0.

and besides, my laptop has 2 usb ports, so i ain’t bloody complaining of bein able to plug in a bloody mouse, keyboard AND 2 other things without having to drag a usb hub around (and some of them actually hum, yuck)…

“wouldn’t call it a huge selling point”… yeah.
this method of thinking will eventually make you post about the fact that renoise “Most Likely” can only have 1 track per song, since it’s most likely limited and a piece of shit, right? nice scarcity thinking, dude!

Still it’s only a Hub, so doesn’t provide any extra ports as such, just connectors. Still very useful if your laptop only has two as standard and good to hear it is 2.0 as a lot of them are not! (Although maybe this isn’t so true with Apple ones.)

i really dont grok this method of thinking at all, to be honest. i have 2 usb ports on my laptop. i plug in a usb keyboard, and after having plugged that in, i have 3 usb ports on my laptop free, a total of 4 usb ports. i really don’t see what the big issue here is. yeah, the keyboard doesn’t come with 3-90 usb-ports, why should it, it wouldn’t even work designwise, you’d have cables all over the fukin place.

In non-Apple users there’s some inherent need to think that Apple sucks as bad as every other product manufacturer, that they don’t think, and that they aren’t interested in what the end-user wants to do, and therefore sell you poxy pieces of shit which suck.

you know, i actually walked into a store and bought the keyboard WITHOUT REALIZING it had 2 usb ports. I just wanted a decent keyboard. Then I was completely shocked when I realized it came with not 1 but 2 usb ports. I left it at that, only to now, after your “most likely” comment to find out that it was usb2.0.

Up until August 2007 the hub was 1.1 so it’s not as stupid thinking as you seem to want to imply! Did I know how long you’ve owned it?

“The USB keyboard is also combined with a two-port USB hub, with the hub being USB 1.1 on older keyboards and USB 2.0 on the August 2007 model.”

USB2.0 has been around since 2000 so that is 7 years of them doing exactly what you say they don’t!

You can get USB keyboards for the PC with hubs which are 1.1 or 2.0 you just have to be aware of what you are buying. But you have a choice and have to pay the difference, rather than being forced to whatever Apple have decided to release!

But still it’s only a hub, which is putting extra strain on the host that bus is connected to. Fine for all the less critical components to be connected to one hub on a port/host and then you have one which may be time-critical or want high transfer (MIDI device or hard drive) connected to the other.

Also bear in mind that if you have a 1.1 device connected to a 2.0 hub it will force everything connected on it to run at 1.1 speed even if 2.0 devices!

Things like docking stations may give actual additional ports on a different host of the chipset. Not always and sometimes you will also find (at least with PCs) that physical connections on the PC are actually on the same host so no different than using an external hub.

Please explain further. I read this like this:

usb 2.0 hub connected to laptop with usb 2.0 cable.

hub has 4 usb-ports. 4 usb-cables are plugged in. three are plugged to usb2.0 compliant devices functioning at usb2.0 speeds. the fourth is a usb1.1 device. when this device is plugged in, do all the hub usbports default to working at 1.1? because that would explain some things…

That is what I’ve always been led to believe, yes.


Although some other search results seem to hint at otherwise…

You are correct. There is a distinct lack of information. lack of information does not imply stupidity. Living in my own soup, as I do, I’m familiar with these (vaguely available) facts:

  1. I started using Renoise in 2008 (That’s after they switched to usb2.0 :D )
  2. Became vaguely active on the forum around 2008 (mostly to cry about expand + shrink features - the usual adv.edit parameters functionalities missing from Renoise) (That’s after they switched to usb 2.0 :D )
  3. Got my first MBP (which is listed in my signature) back in August2009 and switched to using Renoise with that. (that’s definitely after they switched to usb2.0 :D )
  4. Bought an Apple Keyboard new about a month or two ago (2011) (which is also after they switched to usb2.0 :D )

now, i have seen the older keyboard and it’s really quite neat, more like a regular keyboard instead of these dinky slabs on another slab, but if the trade is usb1.1 instead of usb2.0, no point (besides, this seems like it would be sturdier and i’ve already taken it out to travel…

Like these openly viewable and contradictory facts?

it would be interesting to know this for certain. and how to figure out if it’s the cable or the device making it usb1.1 instead of usb2.0.
i might have some cableupdating to go for since i have a pretty random selection of those generic usbcables. i always seemed to experience this on pc/mac that when you actually do plug everything in properly (and by that i do mean everything, firewire, usbhubs, usbdevices, audio inputs+outputs and the whole load), there is a small-to-massive loss in performance. i could never figure out why that is, maybe this usb1.1-2.0 issue is the big deal

Easy to test.

Get a USB 2.0 HDD.
Run a speed test via a 2.0 hub.
Plug in a 1.1/1.0 device (mouse??) in another port of the hub.
Run speed test again.

Difference should only be marginal if it doesn’t limit it or massively different if it does.