Key signature

Hi everybody,

I might miss something but I can’t get the change the key signature of, if not the whole projet, at least midi tracks…
I’d like to set my midi track in F minor (aeolian), I’ve changed the right key into the Score editor but in the midi editor I still have Sharp notes instead of Flat ones.
I have also tried to change in the left side Inspector > Scale correction > “Current: No scale” to “New: F (Aeolian)”, also set the Project Root Key in the Project window toolbar to F but nothing…

Any help??
Thanks guys

Cubase doesn’t like “flat notes” – I’ve learned to cope with it. In some cases it will display correct note names in the key editor, and other times it won’t. It’s gotten better over the two versions I’ve used so far, but still isn’t perfect. The pitches will be right and play correctly, but Bb may still show as A# and so on.

Though it’s not intuitive, the “Project Root Key” is not connected to how notes are displayed in the midi editors.

But the chord track is, and gives very good control over how flats and sharps are displayed, (not all the lists with note names do this though.)

You have to turn on the pref, “Enharmonics from chord track” then, you can insert a chord on the chord track and both flats and sharps are displayed. On my system it’s not at all hit-and-miss, it works consistently using what I described above.

pic of the preference:

…And Bb is the exact same as A#
Both ways of naming are correct.

We could argue they are different pitches, but, in Cubase they are the same. However, in F minor, you have Bb, not A#.

This. (I wish we had 'like" for posts, it helps readers know whose answers are good).

A# (A sharp) and Bb (B flat) are the exact same, just different names. They are both the black key between the A and B note on any Piano and the also the note between A and B on any Guitar/Bass or any other instrument. No differences at all, at least in the 12 note chromatic scale we use for all modern western music and tune our instruments.

Well… While that’s correct as far as notes displayed in Cubase or in notation goes, but since you mentioned “all modern western music and tune our instruments.” I’ll just add :ugeek: that as a violinist, I can tell you that playing an E on the D string with the open G string requires the finger to stop the string in a different spot than that same E when played with the open A string. It’s a difference of 3 mm or so.

Musicians who play fretless instruments adjust for this pure, untempered intonation routinely. Cubase even provides Hermode tuning that enables this dynamic tuning when using VSTs that support it. Mainly Steinberg multitimbral ones.

With the 12 note chromatic scale they are the same pitch and refereed to as the exact same note. You only have 12 notes and if they are not to be the same you would have 17 notes in the scale and it would no longer be the 12 note chromatic scale.

You can argue that playing an E is still the same note, doesn’t matter you have to stop your finger with a 3mm difference, it’s still an E no matter what.
Cannot argue how you normally would tune a violin as I have no clue. But for the modern western music you are using the 12 note chromatic scale and thus those sharp/flat notes are the same.

I’m not debating you, I’m just presenting interesting info.

Hi steve,
Thanks for your help.

Good to know about chord track, unfortunattely it doesn’t allow me see Flats instead of Sharps in the midi editor for my melody which is in F minor…
I am a bit surprised (pissed?), even if not the first time, that you can’t select your key in the midi editor or at least switch from Sharp to Flat and vice versa.
I don’t want to sound like a broken record but can’t believe that we can’t do this in 9.5, seriously… I can do such simple thing with Reaper which cost $60 and I am pretty sure that you can do the same in Live or Logic…

Yes, it does do that. But you have to take the time to follow the instructions given.

There are at least 100 cents between half-steps, Cubase lets you use them, either within an instrument or by veri-audio. As far as the enharmonics go, the preference Steve mentions will help. But, in my experience, some enharmonic spellings are still off at times, mostly with Flat Keys. As I said, the pitches will play correctly but the note names are not always perfect regardless of the preference setting. Some plug-ins, beat designer, step designer, have only sharp-named notes. Mostly I’m not working at a zoom level where the note names are a factor. I use the colors much more. Match colors to chord track is a great feature.

Cubase will still transpose perfectly to many scales and it has a rich selection of standard chord voicings and ohter harmonic assistants. Give it time, you may find your head is bent from time to time by an odd spelling, but you’ll adapt.

huuummmm, I’ve followed the instructions and turned on “Enharmonics from chord track” but when I insert a C minor from chard pad I still have D# and no Eb in the midi editor ??

Since I can’t see your screen, I’ll suggest you try this.

Start a new empty project
add a chord track
insert a Cmin chord at bar 1
add a midi track
Add notes to it.

–do you see flats?

This is a daft workaround for something that, in a computer programme, should have been dealt with a long time ago, and the developers should be ashamed. The algorithms that deal with the display of sharps and flats in all the key signatures have been known and understood for well over three hundred years. The originator of this thread should place an entry in the Feature Requests forum and I for one will +1 it.


Ok it works, thanks! …but honestly what a mess to get to it, tricking Cubase. I wont do that for every track I make… Can’t believe that.
I will make a feature request for this!
Thanks Steve for your help.

Totally! I’ll do it! I count on your support and anybody that cares about that.

I think it’s a great “workaround” actually, because you end up having quite fine control over accidentals in the key editor based on chords or scale. It’s a simple matter of adding a chord track and placing one chord, you could add it to a template, or even do it with a couple keystrokes. This also provides color-coding of notes based on scale and chord.

I certainly don’t think anybody should be ashamed. And as far as what’s been known for 300 years- people still debate note spelling, and any “standard” is based on personal taste, rather than what is “correct”.

A simple example, you have a chord Ebmin7b5– the correct spelling would be Eb, Gb, B double flat, and Db. In a conductor’s score that B double flat might be shown so the conductor sees the harmony, but in the parts for, say, the violin players, a human editor might change the spelling to A, and the string players would be grateful, but it would not be seen as correct by everyone.

I understand your point but still I believe that it should be way easier to switch accidentals and determine the key, like in other DAW’s…