Mouse wheel speed in Cubase is a mess (macOS)

If you work in Cubase in a Mac and you ever used the infamous Apple Magic Mouse, you know that it’s an abomination that is only great for one use only, and that’s scrolling. Scrolling is a pleasure, but everything else about it is a disgrace. I still remember the pain in my hand and arm after using it for several hours, back when I still used it, because one day I said enough is enough.

As everything that is an Apple accessory, it’s grossly overpriced, costing several times more than a simple Logitech PC mouse that lasts longer, same for their Magic keyboards.

Unfortunately, as usual Apple expects everybody to use their mouse, so if you want to use anything else, you have to rely on 3rd party software to make it work in a half decent way, because Apple doesn’t provide more than tracking and wheel speeds.

That said, it seems to me that Cubase (12 and 13 seems to be the same), takes the system tracking speed and multiplies it, especially when you’re in the key editor. It’s like Cubase doesn’t get the mouse wheel speed from the system, it just dictates its own speed, and that speed is fast as hell, and very difficult to work with.

This is in part because it assigns different speeds to vertical and horizontal scrolling. For example, vertical scrolling (moving the mouse wheel without any modifier keys) is one speed. That speed is a bit too fast, but it’s tolerable.

Now, that’s vertical scrolling. Horizontal scrolling should be the same speed, but it’s not. Vertical scrolling has a bit of an acceleration curve. So when you start moving the mouse wheel a little bit and slow, it doesn’t move the grid too much.

However, horizontal scrolling (pressing shift and moving the mouse wheel), doesn’t have this acceleration curve. If you move the wheel just one tick, it moves horizontally in huge steps. Move it a little more, and you’re like 20 bars ahead or before, depending on which direction you moved it.

Now, if you zoom (pressing Cmd and moving the mouse wheel for horizontal zoom, or Shift+Cmd and moving the wheel for vertical zoom) seem to follow the same acceleration curve as vertical scrolling (moving the wheel without any modifier keys).

So it’s very disconcerting working this way, because in MIDI programming you have to use these four mouse operations all the time, moving up and down, left and right, and zooming in and out in both directions.

But moving horizontally is one of the things you use the most, but it’s very hard to program your brain to scroll one way vertically and then another way horizontally, at least as far as speed goes.

Does that make sense?

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I’m surprised nobody replied to this. It’s obvious to me that at least in macOS, the mouse parameters are taken over by some driver that Steinberg has coded in Cubase, and totally disregards the mouse wheel settings, whether they are the basic settings in macOS, or if you have something extra like Steermouse or Mos.

But even if you disable those two 3rd party apps, the mouse wheel in Cubase is a mess. I’m constantly overshooting the place I want to be. I had initially titled this as a problem in the key editor, but honestly it’s everywhere in the Cubase GUI. It’s in the key editors, both the one in the bottom panel and the one that opens in a separate window, but it’s also in the main project area where you have all the tracks.

I find it hard to believe that nobody else is annoyed by this constantly.

Now, some developers put a configuration file that is not part of the main settings but it’s there for people who want to tweak the program more and know what they’re doing. Is there nothing like that in Cubase? Are all the settings in the regular settings and that’s it?