Replicating old GA workflow?

So, after downloadign the demo of GA4…A plus for sounds…but, no generation of midi out kills how I used to use GA. I would conduct the V-Drummer in realtime clicking buttons for fill/halftime/stick/accent–while recording the midi in Cubase (6 fwiw)—while listening to my audio (guitars/bass/whatever). THen I would cut up and edit the midi track as needed. Done.

I always used BFD2 for sounds since GA sounds were horrible. Now…they’re perfectly useable–great for my personal aesthetic even–vintage kit=mmm good. But, I can’t replicate the workflow.

I’ve read the manual. It seems like the shift is now to use midi note triggered “pattern pads”–sequencing the midi note changes. I don’t love this, but I figure I could get used to it–but, then I find that I can’t get the pads to change to fills immediately. Meaning, if I click the wheel around, I can. But, if I assign the main beat to a pad…and the fill to another pad, I can get it (in “jam mode”) to return to the main beat–which replicates how GA functioned for me–but, it doesn’t immediately start to fill when I click it–it waits until the next measure, and then plays the entire fill–so, I can’t hit the fill on the last couple beats and have it only play the last few beats of the fill then return to the main beat. I generally don’t ever play entire measure or two measure fills…

So, then I think "well, I’ll have to use the drag&Drop midi export to just export the main beat and the fill to Cubase…then splice them so it just ends with the fill…right? Nope. The export doesn’t work–it doesn’t play back what’s played by the style player…

I’m not sure how to proceed. The raw material seems to be there—style appropriate sounds (for me)…and the beats and fills are what I always liked about GA1–you can get some really nice swinging simple stuff. But, if I can’t export it…and I can’t play it in real time into the DAW…I’m a bit confused how this is supposed to work. I’ve watched every one of your tutorials on YouTube thinking I must be missing some fundamental concept…but, I’m still apparently missing it.

29 days left on the demo. The raw musical and audio material being there…this would be a no brainer buy for me…except I can’t make it work any way I try–sequencing the pads doesn’t change immediately…export doesn’t work…and there’s no real time midi output–I literally can hear what I want by clicking around the style player wheel–but, that doesn’t appear to be an automatable control, either. I’ve tried skinning this cat a lot of ways today. Help. What am I missing?

So, I installed the WIndows version of the trial to see if the export function at least worked better there.

…it does not.

However, what I did notice was that they’re using F#0 as a high hat in the beats, which also triggers pattern playback in every set of grooves I’ve pulled up–so, that’s why it sounded completely messed up. Quick mapping of F#0 to F#1 in Cubase and we have high hat and no trigger again–which points out what’s wrong. Despite what the manual says on the subject, it does NOT respect the current settings for Swing (etc, but swing is what I use and noticed) on export–everything’s dead on the beat on the export even with a 40% swing value, which if you know what swing DOES…means it’s not swinging the exported midi.

Now, you might be able to render all of them to midi THEN export…or use Cubase’s built in track swing to replicate the swing in GA…but, this is doing a LOT of work to get a drum midi file. I mean, I have lots of drum midi files. If I can’t dial around on the UI until it feels good and export WYSIWYG…what’s the point of the export.

It did seem to use far less resources on Windows. Which might simply be better multithreading support by Cubase (host)…which is fairly well documented–but, in regular audio production, my little MBAir(DualCore i5) can go tit for tat with the older Core2Quad Wintel machine.

I digress-but, at this point, unless someone has a solid suggestion…Steiny’s not getting my upgrade money. I’m off this weekend to create a drum map in Cubase for my Kronos’s “Drum track” to BFD2. I can either record it’s midi in real time or import/export a file of it. I still have a few weeks on the demo if anyone has suggestions.

I bought GA4 on the 1st day and it was a big mistake. Just reading your post reminds of how pissed off I was when I found that GA4 did not work like GA3 the way you described. I couldn’t get my money back from Steinberg either. They continue to disappoint me. I wish I didn’t have such an investment in their products. I think Sven Bornemark was the brains behind GA3, and simulated artificial intelligence in the product. His not being around really shows in clunky nature of GA4. I have it on my computer but have no interest in starting it up and trying to negotiate my way through making it functional. definitely not “inspiring.” Its also a bummer that those %$## holes won’t address any of the issues and say what their going to do to improve the product. I play jazz and blues guitar and like using GA3 to set up a groove (complexity, fills, etc) and then just play over it. I’m not into that whole construction mode of building a drum track. EZ drummer does a better job of that if that’s what you want. Oh well, I just wanted to rant at the “superior German engineering.” I’m done.

Agree with both of you, and I have submitted a few post saying the same things. Very sad, and it seems to be falling on deaf ears because no Steinberg Personnel are responding. All they needed to do is upgrade samples, make 64 bit, and keep the “record to host option” and it would be perfect. They never realized what we the consumers liked and wanted. Shame. I haven’t touched GA4 in over 2 weeks. The last time I used it as a sound module on a GA3 track. If that’s what I have to do, they have failed. I was so looking forward to it.