Thinning out automation data

Is there a way in Cubase to thin out automation data? I know that this is possible for controller data (Thinning Out Controller Data), but I couldn’t find anything to do the same for automation data.

My concrete use case is: I often use the “Insert Silence” function to create space as I work on my arrangements and want to extend a composition in the middle of it. If the “insert silence” range includes a track that has an automation curve on it, Cubase will create new automation points at the start and end of that range, even if the automation curve is already smooth and has no need for additional automation points (for example, if the insert range is within a long volume fade in or filter sweep automation).

Something similar happens when the start or end point of that range happens to fall on a start/end point of an automation curve - Cubase will create an additional automation point on top of the automation points that define the beginning or end of that automation curve.

Currently, I painstakingly hunt down those additional automation points and delete them manually to get things cleaned up, but that’s really tedious and would be so simple to do automatically. Or is there perhaps a setting that will make Cubase not create those additional automation points? Seems like something that’s not an uncommon use case …


As a workaround, you can use the Project Logical Editor Preset: Quantize > Quantize Selected Data to Eight Note (or any other grid, you want to).

This is working for the Automation nodes too.

Will that do what you’re looking for?

Ah, good to know that this works on automation nodes as well! But won’t this just create double entries on eigths notes if the quantization algorithm moves multiple automation events there?

Unfortunately, no. This setting only thins out automation when writing it initially it seems. Here’s an example of my problem: I duplicated a bunch of audio events and you can see in the automation track below that Cubase created a bunch of additional automation points that are just the same, so they don’t add any value. So I’d like to either make Cubase stop doing that (is there a setting to leave the automation track alone when duplicating/copying/pasting events perhaps?), or be able to get rid of those after the fact.

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A possibly stupid or annoying question but: what’s the problem with them being there?

It’s not a stupid question at all! It’s mostly cosmetic - I like to have one, and only one, automation point for every time there is a change in the automated parameter. That gives me a quick visual of when and where that parameter changes. With all of these extra automation points there, I lose track of where parameter changes begin and end, and it creates problems when trying to edit things. As an example:

If you look at the screenshot above, the first “real” automation point is the leftmost one, where it starts a slow ramping up of the automated parameter, and the last automation point is where that ramp ends. With all of these extra automation points there, if I change the beginning parameter value of the ramp, that won’t have an effect since the “extra” automation points inbetween will just drag the parameter back to that lower value (that was automatically created from the original/beginning event when I duplicated this event). So that means I have to delete all of these extra automation points for any changes in the first ramp parameter to “stick”.

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Ok, I understand.

I guess I’ll add a #feature-request tag here. Hopefully that’s how that works to get this put into the consideration queue for the Cubase product management team. Ideally, I’d like Cubase to not even create these spurious automation points - it would be simply an option that says “when copying/pasting or duplicating events, DON’T duplicate any automation”. Second best would be an option to thin out automation data as described, but that’s a little like trying to close the barn door after the horse has escaped :slight_smile:

Yeah. I mean I see that it’s annoying in your case, I personally don’t have this problem since every time I move things around I want automation to follow, and when I want it to be different I re-write using faders. But I get it. An option would be good.

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