automated volume sliders ...

First, I need to say “thanks” for the help I’ve gotten in this forum. I’m still not sure I’ll ever be “good” at this (music production) … but it’s certainly great to get advice when I need it. Thank again… :slight_smile:

I would like to do with Cubase 4 what I saw done in a music shop this past weekend with a HD recorder. They were able to program the recorder to move volume sliders up and and down automatically for each track, according to the tastes of the user. Is there a way to do this in Cubase 4? I could see that when you’re dealing with a lot of tracks with various sounds, it would be great to emphasize some of them and different points in the playback / mixdown.



Within Cubase you can do what we call automation. You can do this for everything, your VST instruments and effects as well as pan and volume, etc.

The easy way to start with this is to create an audio track and record something. When finished, go to your cubase mixer. Go to the fader for the track you recorded. You will see next to it a R and a W. R means read. W means write. Rewind your recording, then click on the W. It will turn red. Then click play. As your music plays, move the volume slider up and down. (since you clicked on the W, it is writing your volume automation). When your music is finished, click on stop. Then rewind. Then click on the W to deactivate the write, and then click on the R and it will turn green…it will now be reading your automation. Click play, and you will see your fader move up and down.

Now go out of your mixer and back to your audio track you recorded. Look at the bottom left of your track and you will see a +. Click on the + and it will expand the track downward. You will see more +'s. Each one is an automation lane. For example, you can choose the Volume automation to automate volume. I think it is the first or second one. You will now see a line that looks like a graph. Each “dot” on the graph is a change. You can move those dots left and right, up and down, delete them, or click on the line anywhere to add them. This represents what you saw your fader doing when you played it back. If you want to change things here, you have to have the R enabled.

If you want to start by drawing, assuming you did not click the W and play and write, and it is just a fresh track recorded, you can go straight to the automation lane, click on R, so it will read, and you can add your changes from scratch.

Hope this helps.

Ohhh…if you are talking about interfacing with a physical hardware mixer so your mixer will physically have the faders go up and down and such, you need a mixer with motorized faders. You would do everything I explained above in cubase, but you would be using your faders on the mixer to read and write instead of the cubase software mixer. Beware, not all motorized fader mixers are touch sensitive. Touch sensitive means that after you “write” your automation a first time, and you want to “Try again” to tweak even more, when you grab the fader reading what you already wrote, the second you touch the fader, everything you do will be the new movements until you stop touching. There is a very cheap automated mixer out there, but it is not touch sens.

Hi Christopher - I’m trying to picture that - how does one ever make a “try again” edit then … unless the fader just happens to be at the “correct” position of the automation curve at the moment you touch it, won’t “wrong” data be written as soon as you touch the fader on a “try again” edit?

Thanks in advance for explaining a bit more -

Hi Alexis,

Let’s say you do a mix with your touch sensitive motorized faders using write automation. Let’s say that in the chorus, you moved the volume up just a bit for the vocals and then back down again at the next verse. You listen back and realize you wanted the vocals to be just a bit more loud in the chorus. You play back the section of the song and watch the motorized faders move up and down. When you get to the spot where you want to increase the volume of the vocal, you grab the fader and push it up a bit more, this overwrites the previous automation with any new movements that you make with the fader, when you are finished you let go. At this point, it stops writing and continues with the automation of your previous motions.

Hope that makes better sense.
BTW, the Mackie Unviersal Pro is touch sensitive, so is the Presonis fader port. The Behringer BCF2000 is NOT touch sensitive from what I have read.

So is the Alphatrack.

Gotcha, Christopher, thank you! :smiley: It sounds a bit challenging, but I guess no more so than playing piano!!