converting stereo channels to mono?

I just imported a project from Cubasis to Cubase Pro 9.5 for the first time. It has put all the mono instruments and voices onto stereo tracks/channels.

Is there anyway to convert these existent channels to mono? (To save on plug-in processing power and for other reasons)


There are several ways to do this.

One way:

  • File / Export / Audio Mixdown
  • in the Channel Selection section activate Channel Batch Export
  • tick the required channels in the boxes
  • in the Audio Engine Output section select ‘Mono Downmix’ and choose the same resolution as the project for the sample rate and bit depth
  • in the Import into Project section activate ‘Audio Track’
  • click on the Export button

see the manual for further details on Export Audio Mixdown window

I don’t think he is asking how to convert a stereo file to mono, but how to change a stereo track (with a mono file) to a mono track.
Only way afaik is to create new mono tracks and move the events to those new tracks or import the files again into mono tracks.

yes, KHS is right, I’m trying to put recordings which are already in mono onto mono tracks.

I used “export to Cubase” on my iPad Cubasis, and that is a special format file that Cubase then reads and creates a Cubase 9.5 project that matches the original Cubasis project (including with plugs and automation, etc.). So I have not imported any individual files. It might be that the files themselves have been converted to stereo upon the output.

I might just try bussing everything to a mono channel and hide the original tracks and see if I can mix that way. The real issues is that plug-ins are changing the stereo field in weird ways, moving the vocal left and right, etc. Quite confusing. (I’m new to Cubase so the moreso).

I realised that but unfortunately in Cubase you can’t do that directly, hence my suggestion. The technque is “one way” to do it (a time saving workaround).

That’s a good technique, although potentially time consuming if you have a lot of tracks / events.

Are you using Cubase Pro to play the project? If so, what file format is used for the audio files when you open the Pool window (Media / Open Pool window) ?

?? Not sure what you mean by that. Why not drag the events to mono tracks as suggested by KHS?

Yes, this is probably the “easiest” option…you’ll also have to drag across Inserts and copy sends too onto the new Mono Track(s). Might be worth putting in a request on the Cubasis forum for an option to Export the song files as is and not turn Audio tracks into Stereo ones. Lars, the Steinberg employee over there answers most questions so I’m sure he’ll at least say something.

FWIW, in my experience even ignoring Mono/Stereo differences the projects never sound the same…not a major issue for me as the iPad is only for use as a sketch pad but I suppose it would be good if it all came across identical!

Files are .wav, mono, 44/24 bit.

I was trying the bussing thing because I assumed the files themselves were already converted to stereo. For future note, if you drag a stereo file to a mono channel will it convert it or treat it as a mono file, or would I need to export and reimport?

Also it is a big project and the audio files do not start simultaneously (nor at the beginning of bars) and I did not want to risk knocking anything out of sync, so I thought using a mono bus was the safest method as opposed to creating new mono audio files or tracks.

It doesn’t convert it to a Mono file but it behaves as though it is a Mono track, so it sums the two outputs. Easy to check, just drag a stereo file onto a Mono track and watch the meters.

Yes, this is easily done when moving things around. You can solve it by putting your left locator at bar 1 and the right somewhere within the existing audio track and double clicking. This creates an empty part. Glue this to the existing track and you’ll have a stem that begins at bar 1. Still some work if you’ve got a big project. :frowning:

Thanks! That is good to learn.

I also have automation from Cubasis written into the original stereo channels, which is another reason I was learning towards just bussing to mono and leaving those intact. I know I can copy and paste automation as well but it’s time consuming and I am prone to make mistakes.

Ah, yes, that might complicate it further…maybe busing is best after all!

If you do ask over at the Cubasis Forum for an option to leave Mono files as such then do let me know and I’ll add my vote to it

Does anyone remember when if you clicked on the stereo/mono circles on the channel it would change from stereo to mono and vica versa…also I think nuendo has a feature that can change audio events back and forth

It does ring a bell, but if it was something we could do in an old Cubase version or it’s something i remember from demoing some other daws i’m not sure of.