Please consider improving the awful clip volume envelope


It’s so difficult to work with, cause you can’t fine move, you can’t see values to match points, and you cant just select a bit and drag that section,

The clip gain feature is so bad, honestly, it’s actually much easier to just chop up the audio and use the master horizontal clip gain on each one.

Ok so let’s say i have an 8 bar audio file and i want to manually even it out… In Cubase, i can only do straight lines…so it’s very difficult to just raise or lower a section of audio unless it’s split and i use the master gain for the clip.

It’s so hard to explain in text but I hope people get what I mean. I’ll try once more… ok so an example - say i have the starting gain value, i do a dip, i see no value for the dip, or location, and NO snapping option at all either, and if i want to do a straight drop without ramp time, i have to add multiple dots but i can’t math them precisely anyway or then go back to exactly where it was when the dip is over… It’s unruly and completely unergonomic… I don’t really understand how anyone would use this feature.

If i am doing it wrong, and i CAN highlight a section of a bigger audio file and just quickly make that louder or softer and dots are placed at appropriate borders, as well as being bale to be fine tuned, please tell me, as i have searched you tube and forums for hours to try and find a way to do it, and the only way i can see is like every other daw, to chop up the audio.

I will make this one simple to explain how i “think it should be done”… If steinberg want to see how clip gain is done, copy the way pro tools does it exactly. That’s actually the reason I won’t leave that DAW for cubase, because i simply can’t lose that amazing clip gain feature. It’s sped up my volume editing 100 fold over any other DAW.

Again, if i am missing something, and cubase can do it the way PT does, i am all ears, and please accept my apology for that! But trust me i really have tried to find out everything I can about cubase clip gain!

+1 The clip gain can use a LOT of work. Hopefully now that they are improving their regular track automation they will also take time to improve the clip gain as well as the MIDI CC automation too. (The MIDI CC automation is also pretty lacking)

Thanks for the +1 but darn i’m disappointed lol as i was seriously hoping i was missing something. Oh well.

I find Logic’s tempo track and CC editing to be my favourite… Every DAW has something I guess over the other!


If I understand your explanation right… You can use the Info Line to input exact values. That way you can match different parts.

I see that with the main gain line when there is one solid line per clip, but not when i start drawing multiple changes within one clip… my info line is definitely on but no info regarding gain unless i am just dragging one main gain line…

Any way you could take a screenshot, this way I will easily be able to find what I am missing. Sorry for the hassle.

Also, am i correct about there being no snapping? With files not locked to the grid, of course i would de activate snapping anyway, but if you want to just change a snare say in a loop, then the snapping in PT is really handy.

The best work around I can think of right now is to avoid using multiple points on the clip gain to begin with, and just chop up the audio and use one line per section.

Honestly, no matter how much people hate pro tools, and i know a lot do, I still implore anyone to at least try their clip gain and see how outstanding it is. You have command to fine tune in 0.1 DB, alt click to reset to o, and you don’t have to change tools or chop up the audio at all… you just use the main smart tool and literally just drag and select the audio you want to change the volume of, and it auto creates all the necessary dots. Then you just drag up and down. Cmd for fine shift modifier works then too. You literally do not need to split the clip at all unless you just simply want to. I rarely ever do unless I am doing some ripple editing.

Problem is I don’t like to take my ilok out when on the laptop, I only have room for one dongle in a portable situation, and my most important plugins (the vengeance stuff), and absolute 3,( i use halion sonic non stop on every single project) is on the elicenser… So i’m looking for a dongle free or elicenser DAW as my second DAW… It’s just impossible for me to use pro tools on the go.

I’m going to try out cubase 9.5 on my windows laptop this week, and see if it’s working better than the mac version. Will see how we go.

I think maybe there is a little misunderstanding of what’s being talked about here; i.e. - ‘Clip Gain’ vs ‘Volume Envelope’.

The former (little white dot at the center-top of any clip) globally adjusts the overall clip ‘gain’, up or down only - as @djw says, using the Info Line for exact values to match or otherwise, to other clips etc. The latter is the Blue Line on which you can add multiple data points, across the length (Envelope) of the clip.

The manual will be a better friend for the detail… :slight_smile:

(Please accept my apologies if I’ve read this wrong.!)


+1 Totally agree.

Also, I suggest please change the title of your post to say “Volume Envelope” instead of “Clip Gain”, because they’re different features and people are getting confused.

Done, We do call it clip gain line on pro tools, literally that, which is why i used it… but thanks for the heads up that it has a different meaning here.

Sorry for delay, i just saw post today.

yes, gotcha now… absolutely, for the main gain line for each clip, it’s fast to work with… like pro tools and much much faster than Logic…

the problem is when you want to put multiple points on the gain envelope of a particular clip.

In pro tools, you literally do not have to chop up the clip at all. You just drag a range, then automatically an up down handle appears for you, and the dots on either side are automatically created. It sped up my audio editing workflow literally 100 fold vs Logic and Cubase.

You hold command to move in fine 0.1 increments, and you can snap or not snap each dot… as well as every single one having a visual value when you grab it.

What i basically want, is for cubase’s clip gain info line, to be transferred to the clip volume envelope… as well as snap added and a much easier way to create a boost or cut for just a particular section, without having to chop up the clip.

Use the range tool (push #2) and have your quantize set to 1 bar. Select the 8 bars in the volume automation lane and drag down. If you need an exact value, then switch to select tool (#1) and grab the two points you had just created and type in the value you want the new range to be in the info line.

If you want more points, they will snap to whatever quantization setting you have. I have key commands set for whole, quarter, eighth and 16th note quantize to just quickly switch to whatever quantization I want. If you’re not that familiar yet with range tool-check it out-it’s an easy way to create the edits you want and copy/past them and drag them, etc.

sorry but I don’t see any of what you are saying for the clip gain envelope.

There is no info line for it and no snap whatsoever.

You must be talking about regular volume automation.

I am talking about the gain envelope that has visible results on the clip

Its going to help in the long run to keep terminology consistent… :wink: :slight_smile:

Yes, I’d agree with you that @mbira must be referring to regular Volume (Fader) Automation; and all of that is as he says, and it is really useful and MUCH easier now. What you are wanting is for this type of editing with the Volume Envelope, directly on the clip - which is NOT possible as yet.

That’s a ‘Feature Request’ - better (drawing) tools for Volume Envelope editing, directly on the clip.

(I don’t know PT and as you say they do it right on the clip, but, its not any form of automation (in disguise), correct…?)

It makes sense to my that in order to affect the actual raw audio clip you would need to split it in to a different audio clip if you are wanting to affect the gain of the clip. I hear you saying they do it that way in PT. It just sounds like a different way of thinking. If you really need to do it the way you want, then yes the clip needs to be split.

So in that case:
Have your quantization set the way you want for the snapping.
Select range tool and select the range to split.
Push shift+x to split the range
Push 1 to get the select tool
Drag down.

Greg Ondo did a nice youtube video a few days ago where he built a macro that lets you push one button to do an automatic x db gain reduction for getting rid of breath sounds.

We had both clip gain and volume envelopes in Sonar. You could automate both, no need to split clips.

Cool! Only problem is there aren’t any more updates coming to Sonar. :open_mouth:

in Cubase it´s called “Volume Envelope Events”:
use the pencil tool and then draw on an audio event,
the waveform view is automatically updated.

Yes! Here´s the vid:

nice and very usefull!


Wow-I had no idea about that one! Thanks!

I updated the OP to reflect the change as recommended by another, i had done that already. Not sure what else I can do, unless you want me to edit every single reply too.

Yes, this is exactly what I am saying. the volume envelope events is horrendous. This is what the entire topic is about.

I wish i had worded it correctly to begin with, and i profusely apologise about that.

I am going to make a little video of doing it in PT and Cubase, and will post asap.


PS on a totally different topic, i have been doing extensive DSP tests the last few days, as pro tools doesn’t have good VI performance at under 128 buffer… once you have recorded your midi for your VI and it shuffles to the playback buffer of 1024 samples (exactly like asio guard when an instrument is not armed), it performs amazing. I did the test, using the same midi files in all DAWs and same instrument patch.
This test was the hungry Kilohearts One synth default patch, 4 chord progression midi file with polyphony on VI set at 8. One vi instance per Vi track.

Pro tools could play back 16 tracks continually. This was using core audio , same interface as cubase and Logic. All 8 logical cores were being hammered perfectly symmetrically. The 17th caused an overload.

Cubase could do around 8 or 9. This is a huge difference. Huge.

Cubase had slightly better performance when a track was armed at 64 or 32 buffer, but that was the only difference. S1 was better when a track was armed but horrendous at multi threading 16 vi tracks… it could only do 4 ish. Logic could consistently do 12.

the reason i am saying this, is because Pro tools has an issue when playing in your VI’s at under 128 buffer, which made me look at different DAWs…
I just expected cubase to be so much better, and i was really surprised.
So even if this volume automation thing is sorted out, i just… dunno…

Not sure where I’m at right now.