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The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
#3032872 03/12/20 02:50 AM
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Who else uses Waveform or Tracktion (earlier version of the same program)?

I'm guessing y'all may be a bit thin on the ground but that's OK. This has been my DAW of choice since version 3 and I still like it.

All that said, I am not a power user. I do know my way around and am interested in learning more cool stuffs. I'm happy to explore any questions if somebody wants answers, I'll probably learn something too. :- D
All that said, I am way more into recording and manipulating audio than MIDI. I'm primarily a guitarist, also play bass, write songs, sing etc. Influenced by rock, blues, country etc but also very open to creating total insanity of all kinds.

Over a year ago I started doing remixes on Metapop.com. I was using other people's samples and stems as a way of learning new techniques in Waveform. I explored stretching tracks, automation, parallel proessing, pitch shifting, EQ mangling (made a kick drum into a shaker once), over compressing, reversing tracks, all sorts of stuff that is bad and wrong. It was a LOT of fun, I intend to go back one of these days and try to win some free software. I find it very freeing to destroy other people's music, I have no emotional investment so I can just try whatever I feel like trying and see what happens.

Currently learning more about my new microphones and other ways of working with my inputs. I am also learning how to work creatively with a partner, something I've always enjoyed. We've got some nice stuff figured out just jamming so it's time to record that and finish it.

Here are a few of my favorite Metapop tracks, hope you enjoy!

https://metapop.com/opossum-apocalypse/tracks/cats-n-dogs-opossum-apocalypse-production/97388

https://metapop.com/opossum-apocalypse/tracks/acid-test-opossum-apocalypse-remix/92745

https://metapop.com/opossum-apocalypse/tracks/who-else-opossum-apocalypse/85360

https://metapop.com/opossum-apocalypse/tracks/you-remix-opossum-appocalypse/83393

https://metapop.com/opossum-apocalypse/tracks/slow-jungle/77082

https://metapop.com/opossum-apocalypse/tracks/red-stripe-final/77865


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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
KuruPrionz #3032900 03/12/20 12:24 PM
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I played with Tracktion a bit since it came along with some Mackie products that I have, and it had (and as far as I know, still has) a feature that allowed it to directly import Mackie hard disk recorder project files. It was OK, but to a console-user, it just didn't look right to me.

I'm currently dithering with an article on setting up a cue mix in a DAW, something that all too few users understand (even if they manage to do it). Does Tracktion have a one-button "copy mix to cue bus" function? I think that every DAW should be able to do that, but what I'm realizing as I jot down thoughts is that so much recording these days is done pretty much in isolation and people are working with interfaces that don't have support enough output streams to make an independent mix.

Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
Mike Rivers #3032933 03/12/20 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Mike Rivers
I played with Tracktion a bit since it came along with some Mackie products that I have, and it had (and as far as I know, still has) a feature that allowed it to directly import Mackie hard disk recorder project files. It was OK, but to a console-user, it just didn't look right to me.

I'm currently dithering with an article on setting up a cue mix in a DAW, something that all too few users understand (even if they manage to do it). Does Tracktion have a one-button "copy mix to cue bus" function? I think that every DAW should be able to do that, but what I'm realizing as I jot down thoughts is that so much recording these days is done pretty much in isolation and people are working with interfaces that don't have support enough output streams to make an independent mix.



Good question, Sir Mike! I'll take a look. It is Waveform now - version 10 and very soon 11. Tracktion 7 was the last version with that name, it is now completely free.
https://www.tracktion.com/products/t7-daw


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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
KuruPrionz #3033161 03/13/20 10:32 PM
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Thanks for this, Kuru. I am very curious as to how people work in Waveform these days; Tracktion 7 was the last of the completely alien UI versions, and I have to admit that looking at it just freaking did my head in.


Dr. Mike Metlay (PhD in nuclear physics, whoop de doo)
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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
Mike Rivers #3033181 03/14/20 02:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Mike Rivers
I played with Tracktion a bit since it came along with some Mackie products that I have, and it had (and as far as I know, still has) a feature that allowed it to directly import Mackie hard disk recorder project files. It was OK, but to a console-user, it just didn't look right to me.

I'm currently dithering with an article on setting up a cue mix in a DAW, something that all too few users understand (even if they manage to do it). Does Tracktion have a one-button "copy mix to cue bus" function? I think that every DAW should be able to do that, but what I'm realizing as I jot down thoughts is that so much recording these days is done pretty much in isolation and people are working with interfaces that don't have support enough output streams to make an independent mix.


I haven't found a one button "copy mix to cue bus" function yet. The Mixer view did not have buses on it. With so many new digital mixers having internal Aux Busses available I am not sure the DAW is the best place to do that anyway, at least not here. Friends got one of the Mackie boards quite a few years ago and even then they were able to create a custom mix for each member of the band.

My Presonus Quantum has one output for each channel - total of 8. I could check and see if it's round trip or pre conversion(probable and preferable). There are also the round trip LR monitor out and 2 headphone outs. That's not a lot of input/output channels for recording a band live if you are going to be mic'ing up the drums.

Honestly, I went with 8 inputs more because it is faster to have some things already hooked up and dialed in so I can stay in Artist mode more easily.

I have a small room that comprises the entire studio, I am far less interested in engineering than I am in engendering my creativity and the creativity of a couple of chosen collaborators.
So we could just play live in the room without cans or mixes. This is one of the bajillions of small project studios that have popped up all over the globe.

If I needed a special mix for an artist to optimize their performance we would be overdubbing at that point. It would not take me long to do a Save As, adjust the mix, export it and use that for overdubbing.
Unlikely scenario, fine with me.

Down the page just a bit on the left is the Waveform 9 manual, that is the most current edition. I've looked a few things up in it. I've also figured things out and made stuff up depending. https://www.tracktion.com/training/manuals

Well, that's my planet - at least for now. Sorry I haven't answered your question. Version 11 is coming out soon, maybe it will be a feature. Cheers, Kuru


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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
Dr Mike Metlay #3033197 03/14/20 03:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Dr Mike Metlay
Thanks for this, Kuru. I am very curious as to how people work in Waveform these days; Tracktion 7 was the last of the completely alien UI versions, and I have to admit that looking at it just freaking did my head in.


Some things I bring up may be obvious or standard to all DAWs, I don't have any idea!!! :- D Not gonna apologize either...

For me, the first time I opened Tracktion 3, I realized the GUI was designed to be mouse-friendly. They avoided "knobs" and used sliders.
Yes, I know keyboard commands are much faster. I used them at work, graphics. I find the mouse more calming, part of being more the Artist than the Engineer.
I've always drawn so maybe that's part of it, the mouse is more like drawing.

There is an extensive list of keyboard commands - 8th item down in the Settings tab.

I like the left to right layout for tracks. I like that clicking on an area in the GUI brings up options for that area in the box bottom center. The current one goes away when you choose a new one, no stray palettes cluttering up things.

I had fun getting the basics down and found it much easier to get things done compared to MOTU DP from the same time frame. Others prefer DP, we can all use what we like!
Little by little I've added to that. The automation tool is like drawing lines in Adobe Illustrator - vector. That connected.

I LOVE that clicking Record turns the bottom row of the "transport" contols into 2 buttons - "Abort" and "Abort and Restart", those are super handy. One of my techy projects is to fire up the bonus Presonus Faderport 1 and see if I can get it to make those work. Be nice to run things from across the room sometimes.

From mixing on Metapop I figured out parallel processing with one clean track (optional) and up to 8 processed tracks, all automated to blend in subtle bits and dabs here and there. Great way to keep things interesting.
I learned how to build accurate loops, how to create freaky drum beats by stretching sound clips, pitch shifting, all sorts of fun stuff.

One of my remixes was 66 tracks, fully automated and parallel processed. https://metapop.com/opossum-apocalypse/tracks/yours-opossum-apocalypse-remix/81308
That was quite a bit of work, I am fairly indifferent to the song and recording but I learned all sorts of things doing it.

Yes, you can color code tracks.

I'll make a go of any questions. I may come up with something. There are tons of features that I have never looked at - here's the manual https://www.tracktion.com/training/manuals




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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
KuruPrionz #3033262 03/14/20 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by KuruPrionz

I haven't found a one button "copy mix to cue bus" function yet. The Mixer view did not have buses on it. With so many new digital mixers having internal Aux Busses available I am not sure the DAW is the best place to do that anyway, at least not here. Friends got one of the Mackie boards quite a few years ago and even then they were able to create a custom mix for each member of the band.


The only DAW program that I know of that opens up with buses by default is Mixbus. But even Harrison suggests that Mixbus is designed around a console and isn't optimum as a recorder/editor (though of course those are available, too). While you can use Mixbus' buses for cue feeds easily enough, they're really intended to be used to sum tracks to a single processor, like putting all the close drum mics through the same short reverb.

As far as Tracktion goes, I do remember once explaining on a forum, probably the long gone Mackie forum, how to set up cue mixes. That's kind of important given the close relation between Mackie and Tracktion, since Mackie made several interfaces during that time period that had plenty of outputs.

Quote
My Presonus Quantum has one output for each channel - total of 8. I could check and see if it's round trip or pre conversion(probable and preferable). There are also the round trip LR monitor out and 2 headphone outs. That's not a lot of input/output channels for recording a band live if you are going to be mic'ing up the drums.


If the Quantum works like all of the other PreSonus multi-channel instruments, and I see no reason why it doesn't, when using the internal mixer, the one that you operate from the Quantum software control panel, the internal routing - from an input to an assigned output - is digital, so it goes through an A/D-D/A conversion. But today's converters, and the DSP router/mixer can be really fast, only a few tenths of a millisecond between input and output. Where the bragging rights are these days is in the round trip in and out of the computer. With Thunderbolt as the hardware interface and a driver designed for low latency, that can be on the order of 1 millisecond. The benefit is that you can use the DAW's mixer as your cue mixer without a big hit in monitoring latency. That's really what everyone wants to do, so they don't need to use two mixers - the interface's DSP mixer and the DAW mixer - to create cue mixes. It'll never be as good as an analog hardware mixer but it's getting better with every generation.

Quote
Honestly, I went with 8 inputs more because it is faster to have some things already hooked up and dialed in so I can stay in Artist mode more easily.


As a player and dabbler, never an artists, I always think in terms of the studio, which means I don't have full appreciation for the design target for a lot of today's equipment. I understand the convenience of having everything hooked up and ready to go that you get from having plenty of inputs. That's why, back in the day when interfaces were rarely more than two channels in and out (or your computer's built-in sound hardware), people were buying 8-channel mixers, basically to use as a patchbay.


Quote
If I needed a special mix for an artist to optimize their performance we would be overdubbing at that point. It would not take me long to do a Save As, adjust the mix, export it and use that for overdubbing.


Where there's a will, there's a way. I love my Mackie 1200F interface because it has oodles of outputs, and every output (pair) has its own DSP mixer. The only rub is that each of those mixers has all of the hardware inputs, but only one stereo return from the DAW, and each of the mixers has its unique DAW output pair. So if, for overdubbing, I want to make a basic backing mix in the DAW and add the live inputs to it in the DSP mixer, I need to assign the DAW mix to each output stream that I want to come back into one of the DSP mixes.

The new digital consoles, for instance, PreSonus' Studio Live III series, are really flexible when it comes to cue mixing for the studio, because they're designed to make multiple stage and in-ear monitor mixes easy. There are two reasons why I haven't replaced my Soundcraft with one are fighting the user interface (not having one button per function) and that they don't have enough hardware outputs. They're ideal, though, if your computer is your multitrack recorder, as all the inputs are, in essence, direct outputs that go to the computer via USB or an Ethernet protocol (Dante, AVB, etc), and all of the DAW output streams can be routed to, in essence, recorder returns on the console. I want to be able to send and receive audio from a hardware multitrack recorder, though, PreSonus does make add-on multi-channel analog I/O boxes, but they're designed to be stage boxes with mic inputs and a few analog line level outputs. What I want is a Dante box with 24 line intputs and outputs to connect a 24-track recorder. But that makes the setup cost too much - for me, hardly any return-on-investment.

Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
KuruPrionz #3033324 03/14/20 07:02 PM
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Thanks for the detailed response Sir Mike!!

I know Waveform has some bus functions but I haven't felt a need to use them in my present situation so I know zero about them. Curiousity may get the better of me, we'll see.
If/when I learn something useful to your questions I will post them here. Hoping this could become MPN's little Waveform information center.
I'll do a forum search for both Waveform and Tracktion and see if there are any posters who might like this thread, it would be nice to have other perspectives.

And yes, there most definately is more than one way to skin a cat (and more than one cat that needs skinning).


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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
KuruPrionz #3034310 03/20/20 05:52 PM
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As always, I have no affiliation.

Waveform 11 is now available.
I paid in advance, got special upgrade pricing. It's been about 6 weeks. Waveform 10 has been working well so not a problem.
I will be installing later today. I'll keep Waveform 10 up and running for now. There is an old African proverb "Do not test the depth of the river with both feet."

https://www.tracktion.com/products/waveform-pro

And... they've updated their free version from Tracktion 7 to Waveform Free. This is certainly a contender for best free DAW. I could get most everything done with it.
A painless way for the curious to explore the program.

https://www.tracktion.com/products/waveform-free


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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
KuruPrionz #3034312 03/20/20 06:13 PM
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Installed, opened and Yikes!!!!

I have a pile of new plugins to assign to my custom plugin folders.
Something to do while hiding from the masses I suppose.

As always, the basics appear very similar to the orginal Tracktion layout so I should be able to just jump in and work without re-learning the basics (I am looking at YOU, Adobe!!!).

Will be back out of the rabbit hole eventually and report on the new version to the extent I use it. Not much of a MIDI guy yet. Cheers, Kuru


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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
KuruPrionz #3034487 03/22/20 12:29 AM
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Doesn´t run on Win7 SP1 32/64Bit machines.

I have Win10 too, but I don´t like since I use it and that rules for my office machine too.

A.C.

Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
Al Coda #3034552 03/22/20 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Al Coda
Doesn´t run on Win7 SP1 32/64Bit machines.

I have Win10 too, but I don´t like since I use it and that rules for my office machine too.

A.C.

Not surprising or unusual, software moves forward and the Devil take the hindmost.

Microsoft endeded support for Windows 7 on January 14, 2020.
I am going to have to move up to Mac OS Catalina at some point fairly soon. My Adobe products will die, parts of them are 32 bit.
Planning on making a bootable clone of my current drive/system with the products that are 32 bit but still useful and get some more time and use out of them.

I have a friend who uses Presonus Studio One version 1 and will not upgrade/update anything. He uses a different computer to go online.
That's one way to go about things, I've considered it.

Because I've been using Waveform/Tracktion for a long time, I can download older versions but I don't want to go back.

If you want to try it, you could get Waveform Free and load it on your Windows 10 machine.
https://www.tracktion.com/products/waveform-free
Cheers, Kuru


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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
KuruPrionz #3035478 03/28/20 03:54 PM
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I am cruising along on Mojave on most of my machines and feel no need to go to Catalina... still too many music-related glitches on report. But one of these days I have to see about building a music-only Windows machine and loading it for bear, just to see if I can get significant performance improvements from hotter hardware with not much invested.

Thanks for the info, Kuru. I will probably have more questions down the line, but I need to clear off some stuff on my to do list before I try to poke around in Waveform. smile Keep the info coming, though... folks need to know about this stuff!

mike


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Re: The Waveform/Tracktion DAW Thread
Dr Mike Metlay #3035518 03/28/20 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Dr Mike Metlay
I am cruising along on Mojave on most of my machines and feel no need to go to Catalina... still too many music-related glitches on report. But one of these days I have to see about building a music-only Windows machine and loading it for bear, just to see if I can get significant performance improvements from hotter hardware with not much invested.

Thanks for the info, Kuru. I will probably have more questions down the line, but I need to clear off some stuff on my to do list before I try to poke around in Waveform. smile Keep the info coming, though... folks need to know about this stuff!

mike

Very soon I plan on making a complete bootable external hard drive with everything on my current computer and running High Sierra. I've done that in the past, it allows you to stay where you are and also move forward. Sooner or later, browser updates will start to become glitchy. At least that's what happened last time!

Waveform 11 (Pro) is now up and running. I've installed it. It does not install over Waveform 10 so I can transition gracefully if needed. So far, I've just switched to the newest version.

Tracktion 7 Free has been replaced by Waveform Free. https://www.tracktion.com/products/waveform-free

I've noticed that 11 already "knows" some of my "ish" from 10, that saves time. My custom plug-in folders are intact. There are lots of new plugins included so I have more sorting to do!!
I also have quite a "clean up" list - yikes!!!

Next up is creating a new template, I've learned enough to want to update from the previous template. It's time to see if I can save plug-ins and even settings within the plugins to the template.
It's also time to expand the color coding - It is not unusual for me to create multiple instances of a single track, add plugins and automate so the mix becomes a subtle, ever-changing soundscape.

Sort of like using a pedalboard live to change effectx on the fly to serve the song. I've always loved the sound of the older "stereo" chorus amps that have one speaker dry and the other with the effect so I am doing similar concepts but the variety of options is mulitplied.

So far, so good. Cheers, Kuru


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