Importing Cycle Markers?

I’m new to Cubase, and on day 10 of my 60-day free trial of Pro 12. Regarding Markers and Regions/Ranges/Cycle Markers, I’ve found that Cubase can’t import standard Marker/Region data contained in WAV files, unlike both Cakewalk (which unfortunately renumbers/renames them?) and Reaper (which imports them perfectly). This seems like a huge exclusion. Bummer.

OK, so manual says I can import Marker data in MIDI files. Seems very round-a-bout, but, OK, I’m new here. So I create a new Cubase project, create a marker track with a few Markers and a couple of Cycle Markers and a single empty MIDI track (just so I can export Markers…). I export MIDI file making sure Markers is set in the Export Options.

I then open another Cubase project and Import the MIDI File and the Markers were indeed imported. However, all Cycle Markers were converted to position Markers and all Range/Duration information was lost. Really?

Somebody PLEASE tell me I’m missing something, and not that Cubase can’t even import it’s own Marker exports correctly! Can you really not import Cycle Markers?

File->Import->Tracks from Project. Browse to the project file that contains the markers you want to import, then in the following dialog check the marker track.

I’ve found that Cubase can’t import standard Marker/Region data contained in WAV files

I’m talking about markers in a standard WAV file, not part of a Cubase project, as well as Cubase not being able to import Cycle Markers from its own exports.

Don’t know about markers in wav files, but Cubase can import its own cycle markers with the way I described. It cannot do so from importing MIDI file, because MIDI marker events are points in time, not time ranges, so the best Cubase can do when exporting to a standard MIDI file is to convert cycle markers to “regular” marker events. It’s a lossy conversion, of course, but there is not much Cubase can do about it.

A small question: When Reaper imports markers will these always be position markers and never cycle markers?

Actually, they could supply additional, more natural and intuitive ways to export and import both Markers and Regions that support inter-connectivity with other systems. All is not a Steinberg world, after all. I did not know that MIDI markers could not be ranges, so that is good to know. Even more of a reason for additional support for Cubase’s Cycle (or Region) markers beyond import from existing Cubase Project files, which seems more of an afterthought solution to a problem.

No, Reaper imports both the Cue Markers and Region Markers (actually, cue markers with a start and end position and a duration) from the same WAV file (created in Adobe Audition) and puts them BOTH on the timeline exactly as they should be. Reaper has a separate area on the timeline for Regions and Cue Markers, keeping them distinct and easier to manage. The distinction between the two types is maintained, i.e., there is no watering down of the data as in Cubase. Cakewalk imports them too but, unlike Reaper, it converts Regions into start cues only (like Cubase) and renumbers/renames them as well (sigh).

Do the markers in Reaper go to the area above the time ruler or directly on the audio event?

So Cubase does import cue points? I thought you said in your first post that Cubase does not import any markers from wave files.

Anyway, this means that Cakewalk (and Cubase?) only import the cue points from the cue-chunk. Marker names should be found in the Associated Data List. Personally I don’t know where the cycle/loop/region markers are usually stored, in the playlist-chunk or in the sampler-chunk. But this gets ignored, too.

I wouldn’t know how I would expect Cubase to import markers stored within a wave file from a users point of view. Create a new marker track maybe and put the markers there? What happens if you move the audio event? Should the markers move along or get “detached” from the event?

Yes, actually, both. Reaper has done it right. When you first import the WAV file, the Event itself has Clip Markers embedded, which you can see on the timeline in the Event itself. Reaper also has an option to copy those clip markers to project markers, so they also appear on the timeline. So, if you move the Clip, the markers tag along for the ride. The Markers you copied to the project do not. Once copied, they are fixed to the timeline. Elegant solution, and best of both worlds. It’s not that hard, just takes a little innovation.

In that comment I was referring to when I exported Markers in a MIDI file from Cubase and then imported them back into Cubase, that the Cycle Markers were lost (as I’ve learned, MIDI files don’t save Regions, so the Export is what deleted the Cycle Markers from the chain). Which is why Cubase needs a better solution to handling Importing/Exporting Markers.

Thanks for the info.

Sometimes things are harder than you think. In this example it stems from the fact that the audio event that you have on an audio track is not the wave file.
In Cubase an Audio Event is a subset of an audio clip. Each Event refers to exactly one clip. An audio clip refers to one or several audio files. Therefore it would not be an easy task to keep file markers on something that is not a wave file. Cubase does not have a concept of audio event based markers yet. Hitpoint markers are the closest thing but not what you are looking for.

I would be interested to learn how Reaper handles this stuff. Maybe it converts markers from wave and aiff files to an internal clip marker system and just sticks it to the clip?
What happens to clip markers when you mixdown several audio events to a new file? Will the new file have all the markers from all the events plus the global markers?
What is the hierarchy for audio in Reaper? In Cubase it is [Audio Part, optional] → Event → Clip → File.
Any video on YT that covers this topic?

True, but then, that’s pretty standard practice in any DAW. You have Audio Events that refer to a single file on disk, and you can have many Events that refer to the same file, so that any change to that file is reflected in all clips/events. Or, you can make new file copies for different Events so they are now unique. Nothing new here. Pretty standard. Audition has been doing this since at least 2012.

Therein lies one of the problems. Why not? Cubase has been around a LONG time. My first impressions is that Cubase is really good at importing things that it creates.

“Events” in Reaper are called Items, and each Item has a Source (in this case a WAV file on disk). If I pull up the Source Properties for this Item, it tells me that there are 103 Cues in the WAV file Metadata (along with a whole bunch of other information). So, basically, Reaper just places cue marker indicators, along with the correct names, over the waveform in the Item where they are supposed to be, based on Time. They move with the waveform if I Slip the contents within the Item. They aren’t ‘transferred’ to the Item, but are a property of the Source itself, and are shown for reference. There is a menu option to “Import Media Cues from Items as Project Markers”, which creates Project Markers from the source metadata that align with the CURRENT position of the Item when you do the import. If you move the Item, the Item markers move with the Item, but Project Markers do not. They are now fixed to the project timeline. Think of it like clip automation vs track automation. No difference.

Item markers are ignored. Only project makers are used in mixdown.

As I mentioned earlier, for Audio in particular, an Event in Reaper is called an Item. That’s the container on a track that holds the audio information. You can do things to it, like automation, or gain, pan, reverse, apply effects, etc. All of this is non-destructive, as usual. The Item references a Source file on disk. I don’t know about Audio Parts, but basically, we have Tracks > Items > Source File on Disk. I’m pretty sure that’s the same for MIDI as well.

Videos? There are literally WEEKS worth of quality videos on every aspect of REAPER in excruciating detail on the Reaper website by a guy named Kenny Gioia.