Cubase composing tools

One potential gottcha with the Chord Track is that it can be picky about the timing.

For example suppose you have two Chord Events a G on bar 1 and a C on bar 2 - both snapped to the bar line. Then you open a MIDI Part where those chords are played - a block G for most of bar 1 & C for most of bar 2. But when you change the editor to color notes based on the Chord Track it shows the C note in the 2nd chord as not being part of the chord.

A C Note is not part of a C Chord??? What madness rules here???

But if you examine the C Note you’ll find that it really starts a few ticks before the start of the bar. So Cubase looks at the C Note and quite correctly determines it is not part of the G Chord in effect at the time the Note starts so it gets color coded as not part of the Chord.

However there is a setting in the Inspector for the Chord Track called Mapping Offset (in Ticks) which you can set to a negative value to snag the early notes

I assume things like Live Transform behave similarly.

Now thats weird!! :mrgreen:

You really need to invest in a plugin like captain chords:
https://mixedinkey.com/captain-plugins/captain-chords/#compatibility

There’s other plugins like strum acoustic which will let you drag and drop the midi loops in any DAW.

Once the chord progressions are on a track you’ll be able to create a chord track and assign the chords to the chord pads.

Although the tools in cubase are good, they fall short. For example they implemented the chord track and pads for years but they only included a few presets when there are an unlimited amount of chord progressions. They should include a chord progression plugin in Cubase.

Even if you’re a good synth / keyboard player you’ll run out of ideas and that’s when chord progression plugins come in handy with thousands/ unlimited progressions. You should actually consider Cubase as a recording studio and have many other tools for songwriting like iPad, iPhone and other applications running beside cubase.

Thanks AP,for now Im very happy to learn what I have got already.I have EZ Keys ,but also I have a couple of other plugins that can help me with chord ideas too :slight_smile:
No doubt Steinberg will add more features and tools to Cubase 10 in the near future.

What I want to do, is keep things simple.As I don’t want to be bogged down with technical stuff. Focus more on getting used to producing music within Cubase, learning Cubase in general and getting to know all l the tools and libraries I have already
As I mentioned this is a hobby,so my spare time will be learning,making music etc. :slight_smile: And having fun after all this what its all about.

I never noticed that. I may have run into it and just worked past it. “Oh, that’s strange, let me try X, OK that worked, move on.” I’ll have to go look at that. It sounds like it might be a bug?


The Enharmonics in Cubase bother me. I’d really like flat keys implemented. I still see oddly named notes showing up in places if I zoom in to that level. Mostly I’ve adapted to the system as it is. It does work but it could be much better. Anyway, that’s going off topic a bit.

Thanks for the heads up on this.

You’re talking about when you drag a chord from the chord track and the name of the chord appears on the MIDI Track? Yeah, if you change the notes in the Key Editor the name of the chord on the Chord Track doesn’t change. … if that’s what you’re talking about? I just remove the chords from the chord track. Since we have versions I never worry about “messing up” the original idea.

Once you get a basic chord track, duplicate it in Track Versions, then, you can bring it up and change the chords. The original is saved. Drag your new chords to a new MIDI track.

It’s a bit tricky to swap out the versions, but you’re also creating midi tracks… So, you do a part with one version of the chord track, move it to MIDI (edit, etc), then you do another part with a different version of the chord track – maybe including passing chords, etc, different harmonic rhythms better suited to a sound/patch. There’s the function where an X on the chord track creates a rest.

Very often the Chord Track is muted after it’s done its job. Sometimes it comes back if I’m adding a new voice.

There’s the “Create Chord Symbols” function. … try that, it places Chord Symbols on the Chords Track from the MIDI Part.

You can play a part freely and they try Create Chord Symbols to create a chord track from a played part. Sometimes you get strange output, but you can edit out any odd chords or move them to a better place in the measure. Great feature of the program.

In the Key Editor, you select notes and if Cubase can identify the chord you may add that to the Chord Track.

Take care, :slight_smile:

Pretty sure it is not a bug. It’s really just a setting telling Cubase how tight or loose it should be about determining when chord X transitions into chord Y. The default is ‘exactly when Y occurs on the Chord Track’, aka 0. But a negative value will let you move that transition earlier by an amount you like. I can’t think of any reason to ever set this to a positive value. If that is something that matters in your workflow, then save this value in your template.

Thanks a lot Stephen57
That’s a great and useful explanation. I will take note and try what you suggested :slight_smile:

Thank you once again,everyone, for your help and advice, I really appreciate it. :smiley:
Lots of useful info here.
My end its going to be all about practice.

In the Event colours of the Key editor ,I found the chord track function highlighting, what notes are or not in scale or the right chord,as I draw them or record them in.
Really nice to have visual clues :smiley:
Already by practising using these ideas,such as using the chord track and pads has me sounding a lot better.Rather than like a cat running up and down my keyboard :laughing:
Have a nice weekend!

David

any of you good folks using captain plugin in cubase AL 9.5? in captain plugin site it shows compatibility for cubase 9.10 . would like to know if it works with the AI version. much appropriated for any reply received in advance
thank you

I don’t. But only a few folks on the forum are engaged in this thread, so odds are low that anyone who does use Captain would actually read your question. You’d be much better off posing this as its own thread that includes the words “Captain plugin” in the subject line :wink:

It should work but keep in mind that it’s a 64 bit only plugin for Mac / Windows and Cubase 9.5 was when Steinberg introduced 64 bit only plugin support.

I don’t. But only a few folks on the forum are engaged in this thread, so odds are low that anyone who does use Captain would actually read your question. You’d be much better off posing this as its own thread that includes the words “Captain plugin” in the subject line :wink:
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thank you. i didnt think to make a new post… i just thought i try here. thank you and i will do now

It should work but keep in mind that it’s a 64 bit only plugin for Mac / Windows and Cubase 9.5 was when Steinberg introduced 64 bit only plugin support.
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in that case i might just give it a try. they do do the 30 day money back. if it doesnt work, i can always ask for a refund
thank you

Nice reminder thread of all the tools Cubase has for composing. I should use them more often, they’re great for new and refreshing ideas.

I agree :slight_smile:
Been using Cubase for a year and a half now .But keep finding useful tools and other things
As a non keyboardist,I find the various key editing tools really handy,as explained in my previous posts. I can put things together by ear,ok.

Its a shame that I don’t use Cubase for my job (since my work is outside music) Would be better at using Cubase and making music ,but going to keep practising etc

Cubase is the superset of all DAW’s. It has everything and the kitchen sink. This makes it a bit messy, though.

Nobody uses even 25% of what’s there.

I would like to promote my tool that helped me a lot: link

Now I can pick out chords of a song really quick especially if there are a lot of m7, 7 chords. Also can build chord progression. It offers functionality that none other software does - display all possible chords at the same time.

What would make this very useful is if it displayed the notes in each chord. Also, having a preset with sustain…

I will think about it, thanks!