Automation panel/functions: Create initial parameters.


Fredo, if I were you, I would frame that!

Initial parameters might work for post but it doesn’t work so well with music. Pro Tools gets VCAs right and doesn’t require you to “lock” your fader positions with initial parameters. However you look at it they are broken, buggy, and have been since their introduction.

If I may, let me respond to that as primarily a music producer.

I don’t use a ton of automation. I use a lot of clip gain, a lot of group bussing with compression that creates its own type of pre mixing and various other means and methods in my workflow of achieving what I’m looking for in the Final Mix.

Consequently, I don’t begin the whole automation process at a single point in time. I engage automation 1 channel or a few channels at a time as needed and only use automation on probably a third of my tracks. In the meantime I need to be able to freely move any other channel anywhere I want in a mystical, musical workflow creative process which means without automation. Finding initial balances is an ongoing process in this case.

At no point do I want to write initial parameters for the whole project. So what would be involved is an additional step every time I engage automation on a channel. Not unlivable, however it’s just one more fiddly thing I’d rather not deal with when I’m in that headspace. I’m not trying to be picky it’s just that when I’m in the moment mixing a hit pop song I am in a creative mode no different than when I’m hyper focused on giving an instrumental performance on a bass or keyboard or whatever. I guess that’s very different than post and dialogue and all the other stuff I don’t do.

So, not a deal-breaker. But also not desirable as a requirement to work on the world’s finest DAW. How would making that process properly self-managed for us end users at some point over the several years it has been complained about be a negative?

All my reasons to use inital parameters still hold up.


Already done.
4meter by 2meter hanging in the green room of our facilities.



(we probably agree faaar more often than not)

Too be honest, I don’t really get it. Why do I want to start my project with anchored automation points when I want to be working with faders freely?

You said something about plugin updates breaking or invalidating connections to automation, but does this even happen? Sounds like a paranoid precaution. Any time I have had a plugin update break backwards compatibility I’m pretty sure the plugin wouldn’t even load/plugin not found anyways.

Not sure you’re understanding that not everyone uses VCAs in the same way. I appreciate the workaround you’re giving, but it really does not lessen the annoyance of this issue. Essentially with your method of having an automation point, would require me to thereafter, always be writing or drawing automation?

I once accidently engaged initial parameters on a complex music project. It was a PITA. I couldn’t make any changes without writing automation and I ended up having to manually remove every automation node except the ones I previously created in order to continue. I can see how it could be a great feature for some situations but usually not for me. I would love to see the VCA bugs fixed.

Automation or not, I would love to see VCA links are remembered in a template where tracks are enabled to from the state of being disabled. Cubase can do it. I hope Nuendo can do it too. Please fix it.

Fredo, thanks for the suggestion but that just it is just not how I work.

Unless I am missing something, you recommend I use Create Initial Parameter Events as a simple means to correct the unpredictable behavior of VCAs. However, in doing so it seems you expect all channels to be in Automation Read at that point. And if not, those channels should already be at their proper balances.

That’s not how I mix. I use Automation selectively, only as needed. So following your suggestion, as soon as I engage the automation on any channel I have altered since performing Create Initial Parameter Events, automation for every parameter is going to snap to whatever value it was at when I initialized the parameters. That is an absolute no-go for me.

If there is something I’m missing, I’m all ears. But following your suggestion, and my understanding of it, precludes freely moving faders, plug-ins, etc and then only engaging automation on the channels I need it on. In your scenario, when I do that, I am going to lose the balances I have spent time and finesse obtaining as soon as I hit Read or Write. Am I missing something here?

IF there is/was to be an option to Create Initial Parameter Events automatically at the point in time Automation is engaged on any channel or channels rather than a one time shot for all channels, that would cover the bases.

As things stand, I don’t see how your suggestion to globally Create Initial Parameters would be the preferred workflow in a straight up 3 minute long pop hit music production environment. That’s not how me and many of my buddies work. Please educate me on what I’m missing. I’d be happy to hear a workaround on this for how I work.

No, you read that wrong.
I said that there are good reasons to create initial parameters in any project.

-Create initial parameters
-Set everything to Read/Write
-Lock “To end” and “To start” in automation panel.

===> you can now “freely” mix as you have always done.

As soon as you go out of write, your mix, every parameter is future-proof saved within your project.


That -does- work… but still annoying, distracting, time consuming, disorientating and kind of silly… When I have tracks in Write… I want them to actually be in Write… So that I know they are Writing and not just some placebo write workaround for VCAs…

like, what if I do have to actually Write some automation on another track? then I have to turn this lock mode off no?


Didn’t say that.
I just explained why writing for all parameters in your project is a wise thing to do.


I’ll have to sleep on it maybe, never heard of this approach before. And you do this for all plugin parameters as well?

In Post this is standard procedure.
I don’t think I am advocating a revolutionary, new, alternative way of working.
That’s how I’ve learned to do things, and I see that most -if not all- of my collegues in this line of business all work like that.

Maybe I have become an old fart, but in my mind this is the only proper way of working.
Same as arranging a project orderly, properly naming tracks and events, etc …


Well, from one old fart to another, that’s exactly how I’ve been working all along, as well. From Flying Faders (more or less) through the present day. We have so many more options now…but still. Setting a start point has, in my experience, both for music and post, always been a given. It’s basically a part of my templates. When I remember (see “becoming an old fart”).


The behavior of VCAs is broken and I wish Steinberg could fix this. Nevertheless, I will learn to work as Fredo recommends. I had never really needed it in my practice, but given the arguments and the organization, I think I will learn to work like this. Thank you. Simply a question: Does Nuendo handle a lot of automation or is there a bug (and a workaround) for it?

anyone know if this was fixed in C11?

They weren’t.