"Set definition from tempo" misconception?

I have seen videos on YouTube showing how to “straighten the tempo” of audio that was not recorded to a click track using the “Tempo detect” and “set definition from tempo” functions.

Unfortunately, as I have found, “set definition from tempo” does not save the tempo MAP to the file - it saves the average tempo from the tempo map to the file (one, static number).

So when you put the audio file into Musical Mode and play it back the AVERAGE tempo of the audio will follow the project tempo - but it will NOT “straighten out” tempo fluctuations in the audio file.

So, having discovered that misconception, does anyone know if there is, in fact, a way to straighten the tempo of a fluctuating audio file - without cutting/splicing or warping it all by hand?

Your finding is not correct

Creating a tempo map, applying it to the file, and setting the project tempo to a fixed tempo will set all varying timing of a file straight on the beat (Depending on how exact the tempo map is - of course)

Then why doesn’t the “tempo corrected” audio sound any more uniform than the original?

Here’s what I did:

  1. Import audio file to track 1 (no other tracks in project, yet)
  2. “Tempo Detected”
  3. Applied “set definition from tempo” to audio
  4. set audio to “Musical Mode” in the pool
  5. set project to fixed tempo

What I’m hearing DOES follow the project tempo if I speed it up or slow it down (due to Musical Mode) but the track itself is still fluctuating. So, it doesn’t seem that the “tempo mapping” did anything.

BTW - Any loops I’ve ever worked with, and the media pool, only show 1 tempo value for an audio file. If “set definition from tempo” actually does save multiple values (the “map”) to the file, where is it saved/shown?

I don´t know, why it doesn´t for you. Maybe the tempo detection is not working very well on your file. turn on the click, to hear if it´s in time with the audio. With a tight tempo track it works exactly as it should.

Usually the file is set to musical mode automatically, when you “set definition from tempo”

As said, you´re doing something wrong then.

I don´t know, I I don´t want to know or see all the tempi - not even for a 3 min file

OK then, I will give it another try but I did what you said and it did not seem to work.

The only thing I can think of is that when writing “definition from tempo” I selected the “save to project” option, not “save to the file” option (because I didn’t want to risk messing up the file).

Maybe that has something to do with it?

I will save a dupe copy and try it again saving data to file.

That´s what I did also…

Fender 19:
DId you turn on the metronome to see if the Tempo detection worked as intended? I’m guessing it didn’t, and the metronome clicks will be significantly off from the music (before applying any definition).

If that’s the case, suggest using a non-automated way to generate the tempo map of the original audio - maybe Tap Tempo, maybe Time Warp. Then give it a go. You can look at your tempo track of course to see the variation in the tempo of the original audio.

The function does work, so it’s not a bug or anything, just need to get it sorted on your system/for your song.

Also, you wrote:

BTW - Any loops I’ve ever worked with, and the media pool, only show 1 tempo value for an audio file. > If “set definition from tempo” actually does save multiple values > (the “map”) to the file, where is it saved/shown?

Maybe it’s just semantics, or that I’m thinking of it wrong, but: I don’t see “Set Definition from Tempo” as saving any tempo values at all. I see it as making the original audio potentially stretchy, and then attaching tiny little microscopic hooks on to the audio at every location that you (or Cubase if using an automated method) have placed a tempo point. Then if you change the tempo map, when the tempo points move the little tiny hooks move with them, and the potentially stretchy audio gets actually stretched.

I do have a vivid imagination.

I tried it again tonight and now when I try to apply the tempo definition to the audio clip I get a message that says, “0 audio clips have been selected, 1 conflicting audio event will be bounced”.

Why is it saying THAT when I do have the clip selected? :confused:

If you’ve been banging on the same project/clip for a while, might be helpful to open up an empty project, import a new “virgin” clip, and work on that. May not be necessarily so, but it’s possible too much has gone on with the existing project/clip and the gremlins have crept in.

Yes, you are exactly right. In fact Cubase threw an error at one point and told me to shut down. :confused:

I created a fresh new project and now it is working again.

I apologize for the misinformation I spread above - “tempo mapping” DOES work to straighten out tempo fluctuations. Awesome!

The problem with my particular audio file is that the tempo is so erratic that CB cannot accurately map it. Manually editing/creating the tempo points doesn’t work either because the resulting time stretching is too drastic. What actually needs to happen is removal/insertion of time.

So, what I need to do in this particular case is to manually edit the file using cut/paste/crossfade to get the tempo and timing as straight as possible - then export the result to a new file - and THEN apply the tempo mapping to that improved file.

Or I could find a better musician … :laughing:

Thank you Alexis and Thinkingcap for your help!