Everytime I import a MIDI file, the default synth is Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth, and i have to manually change it on all tracks. I want the default to be the Sound Canvas VA. How do I set it that way?
There might be a ‘better and more efficient way’, but this worked for me…
First have a look in the “File/Preferences/MIDI” dialogue.
Tick the various boxes you want for importing MIDI file.
Make sure it is set to import to ‘MIDI tracks’ rather than Instrument Tracks, or a specific plugin (Like Halion SE).
Start with a blank project (or whatever template you like to start with if using something in Media Hub)…
If your MIDI tone generator is a VSTi plugin, go ahead and load that up in ‘rack mode’. If you don’t see a VSTi rack in your project window, try tapping F11 to bring it up (in Full versions of CuBase, not sure about SE or AI versions). Click the rack instruments tab, and locate the plugin you want…let it make a fresh MIDI track for you (It’ll ask if you want to create a new track).
If you’re using an external hardware MIDI tone generator…simply Make/add an empty MIDI track and set it the way you like.
I use a Roland Fantom XR myself, and I like to use some instrument profiles with it providing drop down patch lists, automated one touch sysex commands, and so forth. I also needed to make sure CuBase knew to assign some Audio buses for it on the mixing desk, and I want to start my projects with the instrument all ready to go. So…I needed to set all that up as I like it and save that as part of my ‘starting’ template(s). In my case, I actually load my XR on the Instrument Rack (similar to loading a VSTi plugin). Note, there are many different (and far simpler) ways to do this…it’s just the way I like my XR set up with the DAW for my workflow and audio input-output needs.
So…Once you’ve got your primary instrument set up…
Import a MIDI file…
If it did not go the default port that you like…
Fix it manually.
Notice that if you ‘import a MIDI file’, and it doesn’t default to the port you prefer, you can select all the tracks you want to change (hold ctrl while clicking to choose one at a time, or hold shift to select in groups from first clicked to last). At this point if you hold down alt-shift while you change the MIDI output in the track inspector, then ALL selected MIDI tracks will change to that same port in one go.
Delete the tracks (select them and tap ctrl-del, then click OK) and import your MIDI file again.
Hopefully this time you’ll see that it’s picked up on your last port choice and now uses the port you wanted.
If so…tweak everything just right as a good ‘starting point’ for your future projects and save the project as a template. If you like, you can go ahead and build a rough template of where you like things to be when you begin every project.
I.E. You could go ahead and set up several empty tracks all color schemed, and ready for new parts…
If you want a totally blank slated template, close out all your instruments and tracks and save a new template to this effect. Hopefully it’ll still remember your preferred MIDI output (if it’s pointing directly to an external MIDI interface…it should work…if it’s a ‘VSTi software plugin’, or you’ve otherwise got it hooked in through the ‘Instrument Rack’ it might not remember it since it’ll be looking for that plugin to connect with on launch…so if it’s one of these scenarios…then the full instrument setup needs to remain in your ‘template’ project to be remembered).
Next time you fire up CuBase, you can start from that template from Media Hub (Look under the “More” tab). You might also try making a shortcut to your most commonly used opening templates on your desktop…double click those to launch CuBase right into your favorite workflow template(s).
The next time you import a MIDI file, it should hopefully start using your preferred device provided you started from the template you just set up.
In short…get it behaving as you like, then make a template of that. Use that template to start future projects.
Awesome post, Brian. For now I’m using the alt+shift trick until I have time to try your other suggestions.