Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

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Zmeinogorsk
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Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by Zmeinogorsk » Thu Jan 31, 2013 4:19 am

Hi all, so after much hand wringing on what hardware sequencer to get, I decided to instead go for software sequencing. I've done zero sequencing in software, and have always used hardware. My setup includes 5 synths, and two drum machines, have been using an MPC 60 for about three years now.

A couple night ago I downloaded a demo of Cubase 6.5, and am reasonably lost. I was able to make a few parts with my Juno 106, but when it came to arranging, and setting up these parts I couldn't figure it out (and google didn't help).

So if make eight bars. How do I loop it, how to I make a track out of it, flesh it out like you do with an MPC? I guess I'm just used to the "part" and "song" feature of the MPC which makes logical sense. My apologies for the n00b question, but after extensive searching I was still lost. Before anyone asks, I'm hoping to move to software sequencing because of hopefully better arrangement tools.

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by Stab Frenzy » Thu Jan 31, 2013 4:25 am

Ditch Cubase, it's not like using an MPC at all and in my opinion kind of sucks. This is my opinion after using pretty much every DAW out there, most in a professional capacity.

Get Ableton Live. https://www.ableton.com/en/trial/ The loop based way of working in Live is much closer to the MPC method (it is flexible enough to work in more linear ways too) and with the Drum Rack device you can even use a pad controller like an MPD32 to program drums just like on an MPC.

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by Zmeinogorsk » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:02 am

Stab Frenzy wrote:Ditch Cubase, it's not like using an MPC at all and in my opinion kind of sucks. This is my opinion after using pretty much every DAW out there, most in a professional capacity.

Get Ableton Live. https://www.ableton.com/en/trial/ The loop based way of working in Live is much closer to the MPC method (it is flexible enough to work in more linear ways too) and with the Drum Rack device you can even use a pad controller like an MPD32 to program drums just like on an MPC.
I'll definitely check it out, thanks! I just tried Studio One and that was far away from what I was looking for. Nice design, though.

Quick question about Live, how is audio fidelity and MIDI stability when it comes to hooking up lots of hardware? Thanks!

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by Stab Frenzy » Thu Jan 31, 2013 6:04 am

It's really good. There's not much difference between daws any more when it comes to audio quality.

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by pflosi » Thu Jan 31, 2013 11:25 am

+1 for Ableton, it's the most intuitive out there IMO...

Midi (clock) outputs are rather c**p in all DAWs unfortunately... :|

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by cgren72 » Thu Jan 31, 2013 4:31 pm

I actually have pretty good luck with midi outputs. Its really not limiting for me. I can sequence as much hardware as needed, well.

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by pflosi » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:11 pm

Well yeah, you don't always notice... I personally don't have too much problems with it actually... Someone coming from a MPC-as-master-setup could notice it though, as those tend to be rock solid...

I has to do with the fact that stable midi clock outputs are like at the very last position in the priority lists of DAWs... It could be done better, but there's really not thaaaaaaaat much people actually using it, and other things are more important in DAWs (proper playback, proper recording, etc.). Add the fact that the computer has to handle loads of other stuff (www, e-mails, etc.) as well and there you have your jittery midi clock...

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by Stab Frenzy » Fri Feb 01, 2013 3:30 am

Yeah I've found MIDI clock from DAWs is always jittery to some extent, although the actual midi data itself is generally pretty good. If you need tight midi clock from a DAW then the Innerclock systems stuff is the way to go, it uses audio outputs to generate the midi clock so it's sample accurate.

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by Zmeinogorsk » Fri Feb 01, 2013 7:13 am

Thanks for the responses all! Very helpful to read through. Spent a few hours with Ableton last night, and liked the general vibe but was slightly turned off by the aesthetic and the learning curve. Need to give it more time. Went back to Reaper, after sort of assuming it wouldn't fit the bill (I only used it for tracking, FX), and was pleasantly surprised, probably just because I'm used to it.

Such a difficult choice, anyone using reaper as their sequencer/DAW for all their synth gear?

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by Stab Frenzy » Fri Feb 01, 2013 7:21 am

Don't worry about the learning curve, anything that's worth using will take some time to learn. Live comes with a bunch of very good built-in lessons which you access from the help menu, do all those and you'll have a good running start on how to use it. Aesthetically you can change the skins and resize various sections of the interface, I believe that's covered in the lessons too (been a while since i did them) so that might go a fair way to solving that issue for you.

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by ninja6485 » Fri Feb 01, 2013 8:22 am

Zmeinogorsk wrote: So if make eight bars. How do I loop it, how to I make a track out of it, flesh it out like you do with an MPC? I guess I'm just used to the "part" and "song" feature of the MPC which makes logical sense. My apologies for the n00b question, but after extensive searching I was still lost. Before anyone asks, I'm hoping to move to software sequencing because of hopefully better arrangement tools.
I would take Cubase over live in an instant. All you do is copy the 8 bar sections and paste them next to each other for however many bars you want the loop to play. If you want to stop for 8 bars and then have it pick back up, just skip over 8 bars and then paste it on the 9th bar. Repeat on channels 2-16 to make your track. There's also an arranger track that lets you jump to sections (and sections within sections) and loop them which you can read about in the manual.
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by Stab Frenzy » Fri Feb 01, 2013 2:40 pm

ninja6485 wrote:
Zmeinogorsk wrote: So if make eight bars. How do I loop it, how to I make a track out of it, flesh it out like you do with an MPC? I guess I'm just used to the "part" and "song" feature of the MPC which makes logical sense. My apologies for the n00b question, but after extensive searching I was still lost. Before anyone asks, I'm hoping to move to software sequencing because of hopefully better arrangement tools.
I would take Cubase over live in an instant. All you do is copy the 8 bar sections and paste them next to each other for however many bars you want the loop to play. If you want to stop for 8 bars and then have it pick back up, just skip over 8 bars and then paste it on the 9th bar. Repeat on channels 2-16 to make your track. There's also an arranger track that lets you jump to sections (and sections within sections) and loop them which you can read about in the manual.
If you knew how Live worked you'd realise how much easier it was to do in Live.

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by meatballfulton » Fri Feb 01, 2013 3:27 pm

Stab Frenzy wrote: If you knew how Live worked you'd realise how much easier it was to do in Live.
+1000
I listened to Hatfield and the North at Rainbow. They were very wonderful and they made my heart a prisoner.

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by ninja6485 » Sat Feb 02, 2013 12:39 am

I've made plenty of tracks with live. Been there, done that, not satisfied. It's only natural to assume I'm not the only one with this preference. I'm not saying the op won't like ableton, but he did ask specifically about cubase. :thumbleft: My experience lends me to believe he should give it a fair chance and decide for himself, don't you agree?
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: Moving from MPC based sequencing to Cubase - need help.

Post by Em Pe Ge » Sat Feb 02, 2013 3:27 am

I agree, Ableton is an awesome choice. It has a bit of a learning curve, as it's setup and operates differently than other DAWs. Just spend some time with it, and watch youtube tutorials.

It's definitely very similar to the MPC though, I highly recommend it.

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