Other options than Melodyne for Cubase?

Hi @SIedDriver,

good point(s).

Btw.: like Steinberg and most other audio software companies usually do it throughout the year, Celemony also offer sales weeks every now and then, so this is what can make Melodyne assistant (or editor) considerably more affordable if one really bothers to keep track of such sales events.


Not really, but there’s a lot of great software out there for many purposes, logically I think there may be other software that does what Melodyne does and is not too expensive and has better GUI.

Sorry, I don’t follow. I gather Peter Neubacker is the guy behind Melodyne. So you’re saying that he announced it months before its release, then he put some people to find out if his own announcement was an April Fools Joke?

Regardless, it doesn’t seem to me like it’s the miracle software you say it is. GUI aside, the times I set it to recognize any polyphonic audio, even rather simple like a piano and nothing else, it gave me an excess of notes that in the end I couldn’t use. If I was expecting it to give me all the notes in a symphony, separated by track and each track with the name of the instrument, that would be too much, but we’re talking about a single piano piece that at times has polyphony, at times it doesn’t.

I tested this several times with different piano pieces, or portions, depending on what I had at hand, most of them with very decent sound quality, and it never gave me something that was close to the original. It had some of the notes played, but then it had a lot more that were not. So it’s far from accurate in my experience.

Now, as for the correcting capabilities, it has cool features, but to start working on that, it needs to do a good job at detecting the notes properly, if not, then you have to waste a lot of time deleting a lot of notes just to start working with it.

As I have said earlier, that month long trial expired long ago, because I think it starts when you load Cubase for the first time. Right now I don’t have the choice of that trial.

Hehehe, not quite. People could simply not believe that the claims were true. Melodyne hit the recording industry like a meteorite.
I remember seeing Peter and his wife at Frankfurt Musikmesse back then. Just an elderly hippie couple (sorry, no disrespect), standing somewhere at the side of the hall 8 with a very small booth. She was handing out brochures and gave all the basic information, always smiling. Peter was in the background answering technical questions when necessary. They were the talk of the town, EVERYBODY wanted to hear that stuff with their own ears (and some people could still not believe it afterwards).


The first time I tried to play a piano it sounded like crap (spoiler alert - it still does).

You might consider the possibility that these issues stem from the tool user and not the tool.


Have you taken the time to work through the many video tutorials for Melodyne. Even if you are clever, Melodyne is not one of those softwares that you can just fumble through and teach yourself. It’s not straight forward.

I repeat my opening gambit - “Wow. There’s an underappreciation of how groundbreaking this software is.”.

If you don’t get how advanced this software is, then you simply don’t understand the problem.


I wasn’t referring to me, my niece or any impromptu piano playing session. I was referring to professionally recorded piano sessions from CDs or similar. I’m not saying the software sucks, it’s fine, but it’s not mindblowing in its detection of polyphonic music. Now, the day it advances to a point where it can detect multiple notes with accuracy close to 100%, even 90%, I’d say that would be remarkable. And hopefully it will, and by then, they will have a scalable GUI.

I’d be more than happy to say that it’s user error, however when it comes to the analysis, you don’t have many choices, it’s polyphonic sustain, polyphonic decay, or automatic. The rest are for other purposes.

Regardless, it’s pointless to keep dancing around Melodyne. The question was what other options BUT Melodyne are out there. I’m sure there are a few.

I have seen many pitch correction software platforms, but everyone I’ve seen is monophonic only. Melodyne is the only polyphonic software I am aware of.

Folks are dancing around Melodyne because it’s the only one at the dance if you want polyphony.

Folks have been trying to tell you there isn’t - but you won’t let yourself hear that.

As it happens one of the things I wanted to do today is figure out what chords were being played on a recording of an electric guitar. There was one spot where I couldn’t quite tell. So because of this thread I thought I’d take a quick peek using Melodyne - which worked great it was a G chord. But the recording was of a pretty distorted guitar playing big droney chords. Not the best candidate for pitch detection - especially when you consider there’s also a wah-wah throughout. As you can see in the screenshot below the detection looks pretty good. Also in my own personal experience the detection is routinely correct, often needing no hand fixes. I’d say it reached your “remarkable” point some years ago. I often joke that it actually uses magic to work.

EDIT: I was quite surprised to see how in-tune the guitar looks.

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IMO, in the current pitch-correction landscape, Melodyne is incredibly overrated. I haven’t used the polyphonic stuff, so I can’t speak to that, but the UI, and more importantly the UX are absolutely awful. sure, you can ‘get good’ at using them once you figure out a workflow that works for you, but that’s not the same thing as being designed well to begin with. it’s ridiculously unintuitive, and the menus in the editor window are put together in about the dumbest way I could imagine.

the UI is hideous–obviously that’s a very minor gripe, but it’s just not appealing to look at, and kinda sucks the life out of any session where I know I’m going to be spending a lot of time working on edits. such sessions are inevitably preceded by an audible sigh, and a “well, here we go…”

but the most important thing is that the sound quality isn’t great. it’s Melodyne’s strongest suit, but that’s not saying all that much. lots of artifacts, and audio behaving in weird ways/not as you’d expect, which then requires more fidgeting to get it closer to doing what you want (if you can at all). can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to throw up my hands and say ‘good enough, I guess’ to get a basic correction–not even an aggressive one–to sound natural.

it’s actually the main reason I moved away from Ableton Live–Melodyne is the ‘best in class’ VST pitch editor, but it’s an incredible pain in the ass to use. the best pitch editing I’ve used has always been proprietary within a DAW. I still haven’t found anything with a better workflow, that beats the sound of Reatune (which is also ugly, but I can forgive that, since it’s got such a friendly workflow). Cubase has a little bit of a learning curve to it, but not bad overall, and once you understand it, it’s every bit as good as Reatune in terms of sound quality. still has some quirks, but overall, quite good, and better yet, integrated with Cubase. :slight_smile:

would love for them to add polyphonic editing at some point–hopefully I’d continue to be lucky enough to not have to use that very often, but it would be a great addition.

There ya go. “JUST” add polyphonic editing, as if that somehow is easy once youve done monophonic.

It isn’t.

Which is what makes Melodyne so remarkable. Melodyne has had polyphonic editing for years now, and still no other program has been able to do it, at all.

I despair at this modern world where inexperienced users just think something is easy to do cos it’s on a computer. It isn’t, and sometimes requires a genius, such as Peter Neubacker.

I agree that the Melodyne UI could be improved. It works fine, but could be more helpful and intuitive. But that takes nothing away from the incredible tech which is going on below the surface.

Why not write your own programme if it’s so easy? All you have to do is split out the polyphony into all the fundamentals and their harmonics accurately, then provide tools to work with what you’ve extracted, not forgetting formants and all sorts of other devious stuff. And we will be expecting a superb UI which hardly needs a manual or any tutorial videos.

I mean, how hard can it be - you’ve got a computer.


not sure what you’re talking about here… who said it was easy? I sure as hell didn’t. I said it would be nice to have in Cubase. not sure how you managed to get that wrong, considering that’s what it says right in the part you quoted. :man_shrugging:t2:

what’s gotten you so upset, anyway? wait…are YOU Peter Neubacker? ngl, it’s pretty weird seeing him name-dropped so much by one person here. :sweat_smile:

it’s great that Melodyne has managed to figure out how to do something so difficult. that does nothing to negate that the UI and UX are unintuitive, ugly, and frustrating for many. more importantly, it doesn’t negate the fact that it behaves inconsistently and is prone to artifacts.

yes, getting all that right is very tough, and kudos to them for being the first big player to make that a reality. but since then, other developers have done better jobs of it. I’m glad you love using Melodyne, but compared to tools that come standard in several DAWs, it’s just not as competent, IMO.

it’s okay if you don’t like that. if they improve the UI/UX, and more importantly, if they reduce its propensity for artifacts, I’d gladly reassess. in the meantime, I’ll keep using Cubase.

So answer the OP’s question - which of those do you recommend for polyphony?

it was a generic comment in response to some of the other tangential generic comments made about Melodyne–not every comment in here has been geared specifically to answering the OP’s question, and for good reason. it’s pretty clear by now that there aren’t a lot of options for polyphony outside of Melodyne. I think it would be cool if Cubase added it.

I guess your point in picking the ‘competency’ part of my response to quote was to show that there’s nothing to compete against? that wasn’t the point…figured that should be pretty obvious.

You assume they know how to do this , when no one else has done this except one exceptional programmer who’s you seem to have little or no repect for, Peter Neubacker.

This is my point.

Your suggestion is as daft as me saying why don’t you build a rocket and go to Mars. Just do it. Come on. No excuses.

You seem to be completely oblivious and in denial of reality and the difficulties of some of these tasks.

Just because something would be nice, and you want it, does not make it possible.

Melodyne DNA (polyphonic editing) was first announced in 2008 and released in Q1 2009, 14.5 years ago, and you seem incapable of understanding that there may be a reason there have not been any competing products since.

Maybe you have some insight which others don’t have, in which case why don’t you become the competitor and make one with none of the artifacts you keep mentioning, and with a beautiful, intuitive GUI?

If you do this, you can almost certainly license your product to Steinberg.

We may well see some exciting new developments in this area in the near future using AI, but that has not happened yet. The recent release of SpectraLayers Pro 10 with AI has shown what might be possible in future with spectral techniques and perhaps this can be applied to polyphonic editing too. AI has definitely reduced the artifacts in SL.

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gotta hand it to you, Pete, you sure are a character. :joy:

That’s nice. There are an awful lot of users out there who think the Melodyne UI is a disaster.

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Nobody here has said that the guy is an idiot that did something a child could do. What he achieved is impressive, and certainly deserves respect, but he’s not the only talented programmer in the world who also knows a lot about sound and music. You seem to be too much on the defensive about this guy for no good reason. It would be different if anybody here had said “Pfft! Dude, I can program something better in my sleep!!”

It seems to me that perhaps the UI is a disaster because the developer doesn’t see any real competition that kind of forces him to improve on that aspect of his software. Hopefully that will change. Or at least he will realize that he would make more money if more people could afford his software. I would even buy it, even if GUI sucks, if it gave me polyphonic editing for about $150, since it’s something I wouldn’t use all the time. But if I want to upgrade from Melodyne Essential to the cheapest version that allows polyphonic editing, I’d have to pay $319. That’s too much for something I will rarely need. Especially when the GUI would give me headaches. And I don’t mean the usage part, if it has a steep curve I’m fine with learning it, but don’t give me tiny text that will strain my eyes more than I have to.