Transport Resets Expression Maps That Control Midi Channels (A Long Standing Issue)

If you have an expression map that controls/switches articulations on different midi channels, hitting stop outside of a midi part will reset the expression map to the first slot.

For example say you have an instance of Kontakt with 10 instruments/articulations loaded all mapped to different midi channels, 1 through 10. Then have an expression map that switches midi channels using defined keyswitches. Stopping playback with a slot/midi channel selected from 2 to 10 will cause the expression map to reset to the the first slot when outside of a midi part.

This has been an issue for a quite a while now and it’s very annoying to work with. And before you say it, no amount of “if you check/uncheck this option in the preferences” or “you need to add a blank slot at the top to stop it resetting” will stop this from happening. Trust me I’ve tried it all.

Here are a selection of threads going back to 2014 of people complaining about the same issue:

Is anything ever going to be done about this?
Does Steinberg even know about this issue?

@Martin.Jirsak - Please, what’s going on here?


This is an known issue. The workaround is to make an empty/blank expression map slot, which is placed at the very 1st position. The reason is, Cubase always selects the very 1st slot of the expression map, when stops.

Hi Martin.

Thanks for answering my second question.
So… Steinberg does know about this issue.

How about my first question:

Is anything ever going to be done about this?

I know Steiny’s more interested in adding new things to Cubase than fixing long standing issues like this one. But come on, It’s been 5 years!!!
Can you remind them for me? It’s been so long they’ve probably forgotten they need to fix this.

Hi Dave,
Steinberg did not fix it because it probably works as intended.
Could you please provide a Cubase project file?
(I may already know what is happening)

Hi TheMaestro. Thanks for your reply.

Martin said in his reply that “This is an known issue”. This means that either it doesn’t work as intended or that yes it’s supposed to do that and they know that people don’t like it and want it to change. Either way it needs fixing.

Sorry, that’s a no go on the project file I’m afraid. If you know what’s happening then I’d appreciate it if you just told me. Thanks.

The best and simplest solution was indeed given by Martin.

What I wanted to let you know that it all depends on how you have built your Expression Maps.
What happens is that the program looks for an existing articulation/combination at any position of the cursor and if it finds no combination it reverts to the upmost slot in the list.
Thus when you stop playback between two notes, where there is no existing corresponding combination defined in the list, it will switch to the first slot by default.
But, If you stop playback in the middle of any note that has an articulation as an attribute for example, the corresponding slot remains selected.

So again there are different scenarios depending on your Expression Maps setup and the use of Attributes/Directions/Groups etc. That’s why I wanted to have a look into your file.

A solution is something that works. What Martin suggested doesn’t work and as such is not a solution. Try it for yourself and see.
Also I did mention in my opening post that before anyone tells me to “add a blank slot at the top to stop it resetting” I’ve tried that and it doesn’t work.

And as for your info on expression maps. You’ve heard of the saying: Teaching your grandmother to suck eggs, right?
Thank you very much. I know how expression maps work. I’ve been using them for a long time and I’ve been using Cubase for even longer still.

I’m not talking about stopping in the middle of a midi part. I’m talking about stopping playback outside of a midi part. Obviously if you stop in the middle then Cubase will remember and retroactively select the correct keyswitch according to what you’ve put in the articulation controller lane. It’s one of the reasons I use expression maps to do keyswitches and not use the built in keyswitches in these instruments.
Say you’ve just recorded a part by playing it in. The moment you hit stop the expression map resets because obviously there’s no midi part after what you’ve just recorded. That’s the problem.

The fact that Cubase resets expression maps when playback is stopped outside of a midi part is an issue that needs to be resolved.

And there’s a simple solution: Just give me an option in the preferences that will either have it always remember the last selected expression map slot or always reset to the first slot when playback is stopped outside of a midi part.

Sorry if you felt offended by my explanations, that was not my intention. I don’t know your background. If you know those things, you could just say: “I know but…”

Being rude is unnecessary, we’re just trying to help or exchange ideas.

That being said, now that you have apparently read again my post and edited your original post as well as the previous one :wink:, we agree : outside MIDI parts where there is no Expression Maps data, the articulation is reset.
An option to retain the last articulation of the last part could be considered.

Not only you didn’t mention that in the first place, but also it has nothing to do with MIDI channels.
That’s why your first post was confusing and inaccurate! and why I wanted to clarify.

@ TheMaestro

I apologize. I see how my opening post is confusing. Midi channels is not part of the problem. I was just using my own set up of how I use expression maps to switch midi channels in my current template to explain the issue. I’d edit the thread title to reflect this but I don’t know if I can.

I then started adding/editing “outside of a midi part” to my posts to clarify because I thought (wrongly) that it was obvious I meant stopping playback outside of a midi part and not in the middle of one. We both know that stopping in the middle will not reset anything. Again I apologize.

I wasn’t offended by your explanations but I did feel like you were kind of talking down to me. I wouldn’t have started explaining how expression maps work to someone like that. Unless they specifically asked “how do expression maps work” I would just assume that they already know.
But that’s just me. No hard feelings mate.

I really do appreciate your replys and how you’re trying to help me.