Cubase's middle C is not C4??

Hello, Score Editor enthusiasts!

I just discovered that Cubase’s middle C seems to be C3. :astonished: Why?! This doesn’t make sense to me! :blush:
In the Score Editor, C4 notes actually show on the third space of the treble clef. This points to the fact that Cubase’s middle C is C3, not C4. Why ? Is this some Japanese or German standard? Or is there a technical reason why in Cubase C3 = 261Hz? Furthermore, can I configure C4 as middle C?

Simple experiment:

  1. Create a New Project
  2. Add Instrument Track with Halion Sonic. Select Piano preset (jazz piano B)
  3. Go to Key Editor, write a single note on C4
  4. Select the MIDI part, then open Score Editor
    Result: the note shows on the third space of the treble clef. In Score Settings, there is no display transpose. In Halion, there is no transpose applied.

Why is this? Why does Cubase show C4 one octave above its widely accepted musical location? Why is C3 middle C in Halion Sonic? Is this something that changes between virtual instruments or DAW manufacturers?

Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe there’s something I´m missing here. It’s late and I’ve been working for 12 hours straight.
I really hope I´m missing something here. Please tell me what I’m missing!

Yes it can be a bit confusing.

Read this: https://www.steinberg.net/forums/viewtopic.php?p=171927

Middle C always refers to MIDI Note Number 60. There are 2 main systems in use for naming notes by octaves, one refers to middle C as C3, the other refers to the exact same note as C4. Neither system is right or wrong, they are just different and used in different contexts, like feet & meters (except even more confusing - like US and Canadian gallons). Both C3 & C4 refer to the same C note in the middle of your piano keyboard.

See the other thread you started today where this subject is discussed:

https://www.steinberg.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=283&t=165382

Thanks Glenn, and I’ll close this one now.