Recording Built-in Keyboard Voices as MIDI

I’ve been googling like mad for about two hours now and although I’ve found a few hints and tips, I’m still stumped.
I am using a RD300NX with plenty of onboard sounds to record with Cubase Essentials 5. I have done MIDI work before from a controller keyboard using only the Cubase VST Instruments. Now I want to record MIDI using the voices from my RD.
The RD is set to Local Off.
I have a UM-1 connecting both the MIDI I/O from the RD to my mac.
I have the stereo audio output from the RD connected to an Audiogram 3 interface.
I can record MIDI and audio fine separately.
My googling has told me that the external instrument feature is not included in the Essentials 5 package, but that this shouldn’t be a problem.
I have attempted to install the RD as a new device through the MIDI Device Manager, selected ports 1 through to 16 (because I really don’t know what I’m doing) and named it RD300NX. The Patch Banks menu is blank and I have no idea what I need to do with it. When I record a MIDI track, I can select the RD300NX as MIDI output, but it makes no difference to playback. The signal is definitely passing through the RD, because if I pull the volume down on the keyboard during playback, I get nothing. However, the sound that I record with is not the sound I get when I play back the recording. I can select whichever voice I like on the RD and record with it, but when I play it back I get only standard piano. And I don’t think this is a Cubase MIDI voice either because it simply sounds too nice.
I’m not a regular forum user, I come here as a last resort cos I hate to bother people with amateur questions. But if anyone can give me a word of advice it’d be much appreciated! :slight_smile:

Assumption: you’re playing on the RD’s keyboard.

You’re just recording to a MIDI track?
Or to a MIDI track and an audio track?

Yeah, just playing on the RD and recording to a single MIDI track.

You need to set up an audio track to capture the audio from the keyboard.
A MIDI track is only going to capture MIDI data, no audio.

Right. So is that just a standard audio track parallel to the MIDI and do I activate both for recording? Or is there a different setup?

No different setup.
Remember to set the audio track to receive the audio in from the keyboard.
Arm both for recording.

Great, thanks for that. But as far as editing goes now… when I edit the MIDI track, the audio track stays the same right? Is there any way to make the changes to the MIDI influence the audio recording, or do I just have to re-record?

The audio tracks and MIDI tracks are going to be independent of each other.
However, you can then output the MIDI track to the RD and then re-record the audio that way. Have Cubase play your keyboard instead of you doing it a second time.

Right. So I’ve got the original audio track sitting untouched, but armed for recording. The edited MIDI track is unarmed and set with output to the RD, as the RD has appeared in the menu from when I installed it as a new device. I get the idea of sending the signal to the keyboard and having it play through again for me, but not actually sure of the next step. What am I doing now?

I think I’ve almost got this nutted out now…
The MIDI track is set with output to the RD.
The Audio track is set with input to Stereo In, which is where the RD is connected to my interface.
The Audio track is armed for recording.
When I record, Cubase plays the MIDI file, but the voice of the RD is not heard and all I get on my audio track are two flat lines. If it works going in, i.e. I can record MIDI and Audio simultaneously, why won’t it work now? What am I missing?

Assuming that your keyboard is correctly set up for MIDI control (Channel, etc) and that channels match.

Is the MIDI track outputting to the MIDI device you set up?

If it is, try setting the output to the actual physical output of your MIDI interface that the RD is hooked to.

Thanks for all your help Shinta.
I’ve tried switching the settings around as you suggested, and have made a bit of progress, but I’m stuck yet again. I’ve found now, with the current settings, that the MIDI track will record an identical audio version of itself. The final part I’m struggling with is generating the correct voice through the RD. When I hit record, only the MIDI track can be heard and it is played as a standard acoustic piano voice, even though I recorded with and currently have the RD set to clarinet. It is this standard acoustic piano voice that is recorded on the new audio track. How do I correct this? I have searched my manual, but it doesn’t go into this kind of detail. Any ideas?

Do you have the monitoring enabled on the audio track?

If you’re hearing a piano instead of a clarinet, it sounds like the output of your miditrack is not the keyboard but some standard GM plugin.
You are able to record midi from the keyboard into cubase, so I’ll assume that all midi routing is fine. Make sure the output of the midi track is really your keyboard. If it is and you are sure the piano sound you’re hearing is coming from your keyboard, then it’s a setting on your keyboard that you need to change. It’s probably receiving the midi on another channel than the one you selected your clarinet on. Try setting the midi track output channel to 1, if it isn’t already. If it’s still a piano, consult your keyboard manual on how to change a voice on a specific midi channel.

If in fact the piano sound you recorded in the audio track is NOT generated by the keyboard, then both your midi and audiotrack routing are wrong :stuck_out_tongue:

I have tried both with monitoring enabled and with monitoring disabled. I can’t hear any difference.

If this is so, why can I control the volume of the new audio track being recorded through the RD’s onboard volume slider?

In the settings of the RD I can assign an output MIDI channel for each layer; UP1, UP2 or LW. I have assigned UP1 to MIDI channel 1. Under the layer edit menu, the RD shows clarinet as the selected voice for UP1. In Cubase, my MIDI track is set to output to channel 1 (which I assume is the box with a square of nine dots and a little 1 next to it). I think the missing link has to do with the layers somehow, because although, as I said earlier, I can alter the volume of the new audio track being recorded with the RD’s volume slider, none of the three volume sliders for the separate layers affect it at all.

If so, I may be ready to curl up in a little ball and cry… :wink:

Ok. I have been fiddling around with the keyboard settings, as it seems most likely that the problem lies with how I’ve set up the RD…

Rec mode is on, which is meant to simplify the management of MIDI output signals. It seems to allow me to use all three layer faders as volume control.

Local switch is off, which means that when an audio track in Cubase is selected, I get no sound from playing the RD.
In the Audio MIDI Setup of my Mac, the RD appears as Roland Digital Piano. This is the same source that I select as output for my MIDI track I want to record from in Cubase. The Audio track is set to receive input from Stereo In.

The same problem persists as before, but under the new configuration, with the Local Switch off, I have noticed this too: When a MIDI track is selected and I play the RD, the voice I hear (regardless of the voice selected on the RD) is the standard piano sound, which Strophoid suggested may be a GM plugin. Why am I not hearing the voice of the RD?

If anyone can help solve this final problem, I would greatly appreciate it :slight_smile:

So with local OFF, you hear the sound you want, but with local ON you don’t?
I have no idea how that is even remotely possible :laughing:
The other way around would be fine, but I’m lost now. :confused:

In both cases you can use the volume fader on your keyboard to affect the volume?

Haha, no, no no. I’ll quote myself: :smiley:

So to clarify, with local on I can hear the voice of the RD. With local off, I can hear only standard piano, which you suggested could be GM plugin. I just don’t see where the plugin could have snuck into the system :confused: … where have I selected it? How do I fix the situation and have the RD’s voice intsead?

Yes, I can use the volume fader to control the MIDI track in Cubase regardless of whether local is on or off.

I am guessing that the MIDI track you recorded was set to MIDI channel #1. Try setting to “Any” instead. (you might need to re-record the MIDI, however).

You’re right, it was set to channel 1, but changing this and re-recording the MIDI has made no difference. With local off, the MIDI track selected and the output set to “Roland Digital Piano”, I hear only standard piano regardless of the voice selected on the RD.