[HOW TO] Automate Mute on/off of a layer?

I really thought this would be possible, but for the life of me, I cannot figure it out and it really has me stuck on implementing some ideas in my latest project. I am wanting to automate the muting on/off of particular layers found within a program.

Let us say I have a single program containing 3 layers. I want all these 3 layers to play back simultaneously, but not all the time, I want to be able to drop layers out of playback when I choose and then be able to bring them back in at my choosing. I know I can mute layers in the program tree, but I cannot automate this to happen within the project itself. Right clicking on the mute button brings up no way to assign that button to a cc for automating like just about every other parameter in Halion 4 and enabled the R/W functionality of the midi track in question from within Cubase, does not record me muting/un-muting the layers as I press the button in the Halion program tree.

I really don’t want to have a hundred separate midi tracks each containing a layer that should be combined within a single program, so how does one automate the mute button of layers found within programs? I find it useless to have layers within programs, unless you want each and every layer to always be playing at the same time, all the time, which I don’t. I really thought I would have had more flexibility and freedom in this.

I hope I am wrong and someone can sort me out with what I am missing. This is crucial to getting my current track flowing the way I would like.

Thanks for taking time to read and reply!

Mega-Trig w/QC’s will do that, like this. HTH.

Thank you SOO much for this. I am going to give it a serious try the next time I am in the studio for sure! I appreciate your time and efforts in sorting me out with this.

If you open the mixer you can learn Mute to a CC. You would just have to give each layer its own buss and then feed those to a group buss. Don’t know if that is what you are looking for. I use it when layering room and crowd noises. Another option is to CC the individual volume, but that could get confusing.

Thanks for the additional help, however, having each layer on its own buss is exactly what I was trying to avoid, I was liking having it all contained within the same program, going out of the same output buss and just mix and tweak to taste from within the program. You can set individual levels, panning, inserts etc just like this, so I see no need to separate them, simply for a mute function. I am going to give the file the other kind fellow uploaded a try, so I can get a better idea of how it works to implement into my own tracks. I know about setting mute in the mixer to a cc, which is what I expected to happen within the program tree as well, but for whatever reason, you cannot cc learn to the mutes and solos found within the program tree… odd.

I want to thank you again for your help and efforts in this, as it certainly does help, however, would you mind spending a little more time in aiding me in figuring this out?

I loaded your preset and it does work on the synth zone patches you created, I can clearly hear the muting of the layers taking place, however, the mute button doesn’t actually light up when this is happening, I expected a visual of the muting taking place via its button lighting up? Is this right?

Now for the hard part. I wanted to recreate this megatrig programming in my own patches. I can figure out how to load a megatrig midi module, select the note on and QC assignments in the megatrig, as well as assigning the value from 0-50 like you did, however, what I can’t figure out for the life of me, is how you assigned the mute to the QC itself? My QC are blank and I cannot see how to assign the mute to the QC knobs so the Megatrig has something to work with. I tried saving a preset for the megatrig module, but when I load this preset in my own patches, it complains about not being able to find QC assignments. :unamused:

I hope I am not being a pest, but I would love to find out how to assign the mutes the QC knobs themselves. I think if I can this down, I can figure out the rest myself and possibly even learn how things work with the Megatrig for other functions that may be useful. Right now the Megatrig is a complete mystery to me, but am always up for learning new things.

Thanks again for your help and time, I hope to hear from you at your earliest convenience.

No, the mute indicators won’t change, the Mega-Trig is simply determining whether the layer will play or not i.e. will it respond to incoming MIDI data, it’s not affecting the audio signal flow of the layer or program in any way. This has the benefit of reducing the number of voices played, and is the way i’d usually set this up…

…however, if voices used is not a consideration for you, then you can indeed automate muting of individual layers in the way I think you originally envisaged, though note that you still won’t see the mute indicators change :

  • First add a bus for each layer
  • Select each bus in turn
  • In the Sound pane right-click on the Mute button in the layer channel strip and assign it to a QC.
    An example of that approach here.

Both will get you the same result, take your pick :slight_smile: However once you’ve delved in to the Mega-Trig you’ll want more :wink:

what I can’t figure out for the life of me, is how you assigned the mute to the QC itself? My QC are blank and I cannot see how to assign the mute to the QC knobs so the Megatrig has something to work with.

A few things to watch out for with QC’s :
a) Remember that each layer has it’s own set of QC’s, and that therefore when you are assigning QC’s you ensure you are assigning the right ones, bearing in mind that the ones at the Program/top-level are the default set visible when you load the program and therefore most likely the ones you want to use. Hopefully the attached pic makes it a bit clearer, easier to see than to describe!
QC assign jpg.jpg
b) Also then ensure you’ve selected/reselected the top-level/Program in the Program tree in order to see the QC’s you’ve just assigned.

And specifically when using QC’s to work a Mega-Trig :
a) QC’s assigned to a Mega-Trig don’t get automatically named on assignment, another reason why you might think it’s not worked.
b) A QC assigned to a Mega-Trig won’t show up as assigned to anything if you look at the Sound/Quick Control Assignments section, but don’t worry, they’ll still work (it just can’t display this type of assignment).

HTH. Let me know if you have any probs, it’s really much eaiser than i’ve probably made it sound :slight_smile: You can always just drag&drop your existing layer(s) on top of the example ones if you get stuck.

ah thanks for that, I knew I had seen it. QC not CC. I should have known that. grrr … stupid brain.

I can’t thank you enough fstaudio, really, you have been a great help. Your detailed description above is what finally had me understand what I was missing. The names of the QC knobs from your supplied preset were named by you, I thought they were already like that which is why I couldn’t find them listed on my end. The fact that you didn’t actually have to assign the mute to the knobs itself was also a real eye opener and what really had me stumped. I like your other idea as well, of assigning the mutes of the actual busses assigned to each layer to a QC for another option, I never thought of that.

Either way, I have saved your two supplied presets for the future and have definitely learned something here which I find very valuable. This little muting of layers will be with me in all future projects, so thanks for that.

I am really starting to wonder what else the Mega Trig can do for me that I haven’t thought of. I never thought I would ever need to use it, as everything I use Halion 4 for, is quite straight forward and laid out plainly in the various pages/tabs themselves. You can assign CC and QC to about 99% of Halion 4’s functions which is what I have been doing all this, until I got stumped in realizing you couldn’t use this method for the muting of the layers in a program. Thank God there is a workaround, I thought I was going to be SOL on this.

Have you any other situations where you personally use the Mega Trig and find it useful?

Release samples, key-switching, true legato etc. and the like. In general though, if you need to control when and/or how something plays, change playing styles and articulations, or trigger other samples, then Mega-Trig is there for that purpose.