Tips for Music Creator 4 & 5
Soft Synth set up for TTS & MC4/5 ( in my system)
Open a new NORMAL project with 1 audio track and 1 midi track.
INSERT > SOFT SYNTH > CAKEWALK TTS-1
put a check in Midi source, first synth audio output, synth property page and synth rack view.
Click OK….your synth pops up and the synth rack pops up. You can minimize both since you don’t need them.
You will now see 2 new tracks in the project. Both are labeled Cakewalk TTS1-1…this indicates that “first instance” of TTS in the project. One is audio & one is midi. ( in this demo…we will not use the midi track for anything at all)
Expand your view by dragging the bottom of the tracks down.
AT this point I have :
Track 1 audio empty ( not used in this demo)
Track 2 midi empty ( we will set this up as a keyboard track later)
Track 3 Audio TTS1-1 ( this is where TTS lives)
Track 4 midi TTS1-1 (we are not going to use this track)
(NOTE: my keyboard is currently set to transmit on midi channel 6 & my interface is a Focusrite saffire your interface/soundcard should show..so use it)
In Track 2 midi: Input: Focusrite Saffire Channel 6 Output: select cakewalk TTS
Channel 6 ( use omni or what ever channel you are transmitting) bank & patch select piano for this demo. CLICK OK.
Play the keyboard and you should now hear a piano. The meters on the Cakewalk TTS track should be indicating audio as well.
How to enter a drum track in MC4/5
open MC4/5 choose new project...call it midi drums. choose a normal project... this gives you an audio & midi track. MC5 only shows one track when you insert a synth.
click on the midi track & select VIEW >STAFF to get the staff view. click on the draw tool and insert a few notes in a few measures...it doesn't matterwhat notes...we just want something to be triggering the midi.
NOW.. highlight the audio track by clicking on it. Right click in the FX bin select soft synths and select Cakewalk-TTS..minimize the synth window.
SO FAR>>>SO GOOD>
Just one more step and you should have sound!!!!!
Now...double click in the midi track control area....and the track properties window will open.
Select INPUT=none..... OUTPUT= Cakewalk-TTS.....CHANNEL =10
Hit Play...you should now hear sound.
If you don't hear anything at this point...double check to be sure the rig is working properly
ADVANCED TTS set up and operation.
You only need one instance of TTS to be able to play 16 different midi tracks as 16 different instruments. In this demo I will explain just how you accomplish this by starting with 3 midi tracks and one instance of TTS.
So…open a new project ( I opened a normal project and deleted the audio track and then inserted the midi tracks needed and then inserted the soft synth) and insert 3 midi tracks and one instance of TTS. I have:
Track 1 midi piano
Track 2 midi bass
Track 3 midi strings
Track 4 Cakewalk TTS1-1 (audio track this is where TTS lives in this project)
Use the track icons…it makes it ease to know what track you are working on.
Understand that this is just a basic setup of TTS to show you how to setup multiple instruments in one instance of TTS and get it all working.
Set Track 1 (piano)
Input FR channel 6
Output 2-Cakewalk TTS1-1
Bank & patch = piano
Set track 2 (bass)
Input FR channel 6
Output 2-Cakewalk TTS1-1
Bank & patch = bass
Set track 3 (strings)
Input FR channel 6
Output 2 Cakewalk TTS1-1
Bank & patch = strings
A NOTE about my set up..... Notice that all 3 tracks are using the same input....FR channel 6. (Focusrite=FR) This allows all three channels to “hear” the midi keyboard which I have set to transmit on channel 6.
I could set each channel input to a different channel. By doing so I have to change the midi keyboard to transmit on that channel....none of the other channels will hear it, and that can be very useful in recording as you will see shortly.
By setting all 3 channels to the same midi input channel (channel 6) I am able to play all the parts into the three channels with out changing the midi transmit channel on my DX27S. I arm track 1 and record my parts doing the same for the next two tracks. Since the outputs are set to different channels they are sending their midi data to different channels in the TTS synth. The synth looks at the channel number, and routs that data to that channel and applied the patch & bank info you assigned to it and it carries out those instructions. The result is that you hear 3 different instruments playing from your speakers.
Install new sound fonts.
First..get the player if you don't have it...the link is on my links page. Select run and let it install.
Find a new sound font and download it into your “downloads folder”. Extract it and place the extracted file into a folder such as:
computer>program files>cakewalk>sound font files
When you open SFZ and load a file..select open in the window...and search for the file folder in Cakewalk where your SF files are located. Double click the font and it loads. All access to the fonts from now on will default to this folder. Put your new fonts here and they are ready when you need them.
Inserting a Sound Font player to produce better piano sounds.
Assumptions: That you have successfully gotten TTS to work, that you have SFZ installed properly, that you have at least one sound font unzipped and installed in a folder and that folder is included in the VST scan by MC4 at startup.
Open a new normal project. It autoloads 2 tracks.
Track 1 is an audio track.
Track 2 is a midi track.
Click on the audio track to select it.
Right click in the FX bin in the track inspector. If you don’t see the track inspector..hit “i” on the keyboard. Select Soft synths > vstplugins(sfz)
When you do this the SFZ player will pop up. Sfz will be in the FX bin. Double click on the narrow window beside file> and a new window will pop up with your Sound Font files. Select a piano font. Minimize or drag the SFZ player out of the way.
Double click on Track 1 to open the track properties view. Input: none Output: Focusrite saffire ASIO play click OK
GO BACK to MIDI TRACK 2 open the track properties again and click on OUTPUT. You should now have a new option… sfz-1. select it and click OK
Now when you play the keyboard, the midi is routed to Track 1 and SFZ plays the piano….you will see track 1’s meters working.
Other SYNTHS and FX that I have bought and use every day in my studio as I compose & work.
I also currently use some other synths that I have found since I first set up these pages.
I have been experimenting with Native Instruments synths as well. . I am impressed with the sampled sounds in the NI Free Kore Player and the Kontakt 4 synth. The orchestral sounds to my ears are very well recorded and as a result sound good in my projects.
I also have the East West Orchestral collection of sampled sounds, and again.... very impressive sounds for composers looking for the best in affordable orchestral instrumentation.
Another addition to my studio is the FX and tools. Included in this is the Melodyne Editor plug in. This is a handy tool to use to edit audio in the same way you edit midi. With it you can easily fix those "pitchy" vocals and even move a note and shorten or extend it. Melodyne, if used properly will not leave noticeable artifacts in the music.
I also use Ozone 3&4 Mastering Suite. This is one of the better, low cost, and easy to use mastering suites. Many easy to use and modify presets are included to get you going with excellent results.
All of these synths, and the FX mentioned are VST's and will plug in easily to MC4/5.
They are not free, and by some standards and budgets, are a bit on the pricey side. They are however, worth the cost, for the quality they impart into my projects.
Now....... go make some music and have fun.
DISCLAIMER: Some people have come to this site for help and have done exactly what is described here...and found it didn't work. SO....
This information applies to MY system.
So when I tell you to look for an input and it says Focusrite Saffire...I am refering to MY system's soundcard/interface. You will need to insert YOUR interface in that place.
I happen to have my midi keyboard set to output midi data on channel 6. So when I refer to channel 6...I'm talking about my system...check your midi keyboard and see exactly what channel it is transmitting on and use the appropriate channel number, or else it will not work.
This info also assumes that you are using a decent professional level soundcard/interface such as the Focusrite Saffire or other decent interface, and not the computer's internal factory soundcard. The factory soundcards will generally, NOT give you satisfactory results with a professional recording software platform. Get the right tools for the job....then proceed.