MultitrackStudio for iPad manual
Please note this user interface sign:
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Starting a songTo create a new song press Song and choose New Song.
Before recording any tracks you may want to press Add Track and add a click track (metronome). If you want to see bars in track editors or you want to use score editors you'll have to record to a click track.
If you want to base your song on existing audio or MIDI files you can press Add Track and import the files. Files can be imported using the Document Picker, the General Pasteboard, iTunes File Sharing or AudioShare. You can also drop them on import dialogs. To use iTunes File Sharing you'll have to put the files on iPad using iTunes (Mac or PC).
RecordingTap the Add Track button and add an audio or MIDI track. Then engage the track's Rec button and start the transport. Now you're recording.
AudioSlide over an audio track Rec button horizontally to select an input channel. A fader that controls the audio recording level is available (at the top) while a Rec button is engaged. If it's not present the sound device either has automatic gain control or there are hardware knobs to set the level. Make sure the track's level meter never goes in the red section.
Engage the Mon button if you want to hear the sound you're recording.
Tap the keyboard button in the bottom right corner and the built-in keyboard pops up.
If you want to record a USB MIDI keyboard you can connect it using a Camera Connection Kit or similar device. Tap the Studio button and select the right MIDI Input Device.
Tap the track's Instrument Slot (AKA. "the first effect slot") to change the sound. By default the MultitrackStudio Instruments are used. Press the slot for a second to pick a different MIDI instrument like the SoundFont Player or an IAA (Inter-App Audio) compatible app.
If you want to playback the MIDI track over USB press the MIDI track's Instrument Slot for a second and then pick "External". Also press the Studio button, choose Devices and make sure the right MIDI Out Device is selected. Enable 'Connect MIDI In and Out' if you're using separate master keyboard and synthesizer modules. Disable it if your keyboard has sounds of its own.
Tip: the existing part won't be removed if the SoS (Sound on Sound) button is engaged. This can be used for recording drum instruments one at a time etc.
Redoing a part1) If you made a mistake you can rewind to the start of the bad part and start recording from there. Make sure you stop the transport before recording over parts you want to keep.
2) More precise "punch ins" can be done using punch-in recording:
- Tap the track's name box to open the editor. (12.9" iPad: tap the Editor Preview pane)
- Find the offending part.
- Select the region you want to record.
- Make sure the Punch button is engaged.
- Move the transport position to a couple of seconds before the start of the punch-in region.
- Engage the track's Rec button and start the transport.
Tip: you can undo recording using the track editor's UNDO button.
3) Instead of redoing a part you can use the track editor to fix the problem.
PracticingYou can rehearse without recording if both a track's Play and Rec button are 'off'. If it's a MIDI track the track's instrument needs to be visible when transport starts. If it's an audio track one of the track's effects needs to be visible when transport starts, and the Mon button must be engaged.
Alternatively you can doubletap a track's Play button to switch it to practice mode manually. The Play button will read 'P', and the tracks stays in practice mode until you tap Play or Rec.
Recording Practice Mode tracksAn audio track's input channel selector features a 'Practice Mode tracks' option. Using this option you can record a track which is in 'manual practice mode' to an audio track. You can use this if you want to play an IAA app and record the app's output as audio, for example.
Setting this up goes like this:
- Doubletap a track's Play button to switch it to manual practice mode. The Play button now reads 'P'.
- If it's an audio track: engage the Mon button.
- Add an audio track, set its input to 'Practice Mode tracks' and engage its Rec button.
- Now you can hear it's working and you can start the transport.
Note: The Mon button has no effect on the audio track that's recording (you'd hear the practice mode track twice if it did).
EditingTapping a track's name box opens its editor. (12.9" iPad: tap the Editor Preview pane)
Editor basicsA selector pops up after touching an editor for about half a second (you can set this delay time in the Preferences pane). You can pick an action by moving your finger in that direction (left, right, up or down). This selector is is used for selecting and for adding notes/dots. Buttons below an editor provide access to other actions like delete etc.
Some editing options that apply to all editors appear at the top of the screen.
The Follow button determines whether editors follow the transport position. You'll typically want this to be the case, but you can switch this off if you want to apply some edits while the transport is running so you don't have to worry about the editor moving to the next page unexpectedly.
If the Snap button is engaged all editing actions will snap to the grid. The grid changes automatically if you zoom the editors horizontally. You can tap the editor grid value at the bottom of the screen for more grid options.
Scrolling and zoomingYou can swipe over an editor horizontally to scroll it. Pianoroll, Score and Drum editors can be scrolled vertically as well.
You can use two fingers to zoom horizontally. Audio, Pianoroll and Score editors can be zoomed vertically as well. This can make adding or selecting notes in the latter two significantly easier.
Tip: While moving the start or end of a selected part you can zoom in by moving your finger down (to the bottom of the screen). The editor will zoom in until you release your finger again. You can use this feature to accurately set start/end points without having to actually zoom in and out again.
Audio editingThe audio editors feature DELETE, UNDO and REDO buttons. REPEAT can be used to repeat the selected part any number of times. The SEL button pops up a list of options including 'Select All' and 'Select Right'. The latter option selects the part from the current transport position to the end of the track.
The EDIT button pops up the Edit Control pane which allows for manipulating the selected part (Volume, Fade or Reverse).
The Pro Extension includes additional editing options:
- The edit control pane features a Transpose option. Two algorithms are available: Polyphonic and Monophonic. If the audio track is monophonic you can switch to Monophonic which is faster and offers better sound quality. Preserve Formant can be enabled to make the transposed signal sound like the original (ie. to avoid the 'chipmunk' effect).
- On tapping the SEL button you can enable the Stretch option. While this option is active resizing the selected part will change its duration accordingly. The Polyphonic/Monophonic setting mentioned above affects time stretching too.
MIDI editingMIDI tracks feature Pianoroll, Score and Drum editors. Use the PIANO/SCORE/DRUM tabs to pick one.
In the MIDI editors you can not only select a part of a track (like an audio editor), you can select one ore more notes as well. You can lasso notes by touching the editor. After about half a second the selector appears. Now move your finger up to start lassoing notes. You can select a single note by pressing it, in this case you don't need to wait until the selector appears.
Selected parts can be moved directly. Handles appear near the edges of the editor when notes are selected, so you can move them easily. The duration of notes can be changed using a handle as well.
Like an audio editor, MIDI editors have UNDO, REDO, DELETE and SEL buttons. The Repeat option is available via the MORE button. The MORE button offers several more options:
- "Merge Paste" is like paste, but it doesn't remove existing notes.
- "Merge Notes" replaces the selected notes with a single note. The selected notes need to have the same pitch.
- "Split in equal parts" splits the selected note(s) in equal parts. You can use this to add triplets etc., or to quickly add a whole bunch of notes.
- "Expand to Chord" expands the selected note(s) to a chord. You can choose from over 20 chords.
The EDIT button pops up the Edit Control pane which allows for manipulating the selected part (Volume, Fade, Reverse, Transpose or Quantize).
The Score editor has a button that sets the duration of notes you add (it's on the left).
The Score editor's left-hand part can be tapped to get access to the Score Settings pane which offers Clef, Octave and Transposition settings. There's also a Key Signature setting, which can optionally be programmed to change at certain bars. The Key Signature settings affect all MIDI tracks.
The Drum editor features a horizontal strip called a Drum Instrument editor for each instrument used. The drum instrument's name is shown on the left hand side of the Drum Instrument editor. A different instrument can be selected after you press-and-hold a name box. New instruments can be added by tapping Add Instr. Drum instruments can be reordered using drag-and-drop: drag a name box (on the left) horizontally until it starts moving first, then drag it up or down.
You can select either a part of the track or just a single instrument (keep your finger on the same instrument to achieve the latter).
The CONTR button in the bottom left corner opens the MIDI Controller editor. You can pick a different controller after tapping the name of the current one on the left.
MIDI Pattern editing
A pattern is a small piece of MIDI music. It typically has a size that makes sense in musical terms (eg. a bar, two bars, or even a verse). The most important feature of the pattern editing concept is that there can be multiple instances of a pattern, and changing the pattern will change all instances. For example: you can change a pattern-based track's drum beat by changing just a few notes.
A plain MIDI track editor's MORE menu has an Enable Patterns options which turns the track into a pattern track. Alternatively, you can use the Add Track menu's Add MIDI Track option to create a new pattern-enabled MIDI track. A pattern-enabled MIDI track features a Pattern Bar above the track's MIDI editor.
To create a new pattern click the PATTERN button and choose New Pattern. If something is selected in the track editor the new pattern will match this area, and any selected notes will be moved to the new pattern. If nothing is selected a new pattern will be created at the current transport position. The PATTERN button also provides access to preset patterns. Clicking one adds it at the current transport position. Alternatively you can drag-and-drop presets to the Pattern Bar. You can create your own preset patterns using the Pattern Editor (see below).
Tip: you can create a new pattern by dropping MIDI or audio on the Pattern Bar.
You can press the Pattern Bar for a second and choose 'Add copy' to add a new instance of the selected pattern(s). Copy-and-paste or 'Repeat' create new instances too.
All editor buttons (Edit, Delete, Copy, Paste etc.) work as expected when one or more patterns are selected in the Pattern Bar. The track editor can be used as if it's an ordinary MIDI track. If a note that belongs to a pattern is modified the modifications will be remembered and they'll be applied again if the pattern itself is changed using the Pattern Editor. This works in an additive manner: the offsets will be added to the note's position, duration, pitch and velocity.
When a pattern is selected the EDIT button will invoke the Pattern Editor, which can be used to edit a pattern. Any edits will be applied to the track immediately. You can use the Play button to loop the pattern, so you can hear the result of your edits immediately.
The Name box contains the name of the pattern. All instances of the pattern share the same name. The 'Pattern Size' bar determines the size of the pattern as it will appear in the track's editor. 'Instance Transpose' can be used to transpose this instance by a number of semitones. If, for example, the pattern is in C, you can use this feature to transpose a couple of instances to F or G. Using Options button you can set the color of the pattern (applies to all instances) 'Clone' creates a new Pattern that is identical to this one. All other instances of the original pattern will remain untouched if you edit this one. 'Reset events for this instance' clears all changes that have been made to this instance's events using the track editor.
Multi MIDI editor (requires Pro Extension)
The Multi MIDI Editor allows for editing multiple MIDI tracks in a single editor, this makes arranging parts easier. To show the Multi MIDI Editor tap 'Edit' (at the top), then tap Multi MIDI Editor, and then pick one of the options. You can pick either all MIDI tracks of a particular color, all MIDI tracks with open editor or simply all MIDI tracks. The color options work best if you use different track colors for instrument groups like strings, woodwinds etc. To change a track's color longtap the track's name box.
The Multi MIDI Editor can show either a single pianoroll, a score editor with multiple staffs or a single drum editor. The pianoroll view features track buttons at the bottom. Newly added notes appear in the checked track. The MOVE button moves the selected notes to the checked track.
Moving audio/MIDI to other tracksThe selected part of a track can be copied to another track's editor using copy-and-paste or drag-and-drop. Note that you can even move data from MIDI tracks to audio tracks and vice versa, it will be converted automatically. Audio to MIDI conversion works with monophonic (ie. just one note sounds at a time) audio only.
If audio is drag-and-dropped from an audio track editor to a drum instrument editor only beats are detected (no pitch). You can, for example, tap a drum break on the table, record it as audio and move it to a drum editor.
Copying/pasting audio/MIDI to/from other appsThe COPY and PASTE buttons use the General Pasteboard, so copied audio/MIDI can be pasted in the Files app etc. Copy copies the selected part only. Paste places the part at the current transport position (ie. the editor 'needle'). All tracks accept both MIDI and audio, the format will be converted if necessary. Only single-instrument MIDI data is supported (any additional instruments are ignored).
You can slide over the COPY /PASTE buttons horizontally to reveal a menu which offers an option for copying to (or pasting from) AudioShare.
Changing the song structureThe Song Editor can be used to insert or remove parts of a song. It affects "everything": tracks, tempo and time signature, key signature (as seen in Score editors), markers and Automated Fader effects. Unlike track editors the Song Editor works in 'ripple mode', ie. the right-hand part shifts to the left if you remove a part etc.
Changing tempo / time signature
In the tempo editor you can select a part. Then you can move the tempo line up or down. Alternatively you can tap the EDIT button and type or tap a new tempo.
The Conduct feature lets you tap a new tempo. You can use this to create accelerandos etc. It works like this:
- Select a part in the tempo editor.
- Tap the CONDUCT button. The Conduct Tempo pane appears.
- Tap the rectangle to start. Transport starts at least one bar before the selected part automatically.
- Start tapping the beat on the rectangle.
- When the start of the selected part is reached the music will mute, and you can continue tapping the tempo for the selected part.
- When you've tapped enough beats transport will stop, and you can tap the OK button to close the Conduct Tempo pane.
If you've purchased the Pro Extension you can use the SEL menu's Stretch or Stretch Accelerando options, and then move the righthand side of the selected part. The accelerando version creates a gradual tempo change.
The tempo editor affects MIDI tracks only by default, so you'll typically want to get the tempo right before recording any audio. If you've purchased the Pro Extension there's an Audio check box on the right. Audio tracks are processed too if this box is checked. It's recommended to make sure any monophonic audio tracks use the monophonic transpose algorithm. Use their editor's EDIT button to access this option (a part needs to be selected for this button to be enabled).
In the time signature editor you can select bars, tap the EDIT button and choose a time signature. Note that editing the time signature does not affect the actual notes or controller values of MIDI tracks, use the Song Editor instead to achieve that.
Each track has a volume fader and a pan knob. An Automated Fader effect can be used in an effect slot if programming volume changes is required.
Audio tracks have 3 effect slots, MIDI tracks have 2 of them. A list of effects pops up after pressing a slot for a second. You can pick one or tap 'Empty' to remove the current effect from the slot.
Reverb is typically added to most if not all tracks. Inserting a Reverb effect in each track would require a lot of processing, that's why each track has an 'effect send' knob. This knob is labeled 'S'. There's also an Effect Return section which contains a Reverb effect already. Each 'S' knob controls the level sent to the Effect Return section, and hence the amount of reverb on that particular track.
If you've purchased the Pro Extension you can add either another Effect Return section or up to eight Group sections. Press Song and then choose Song Properties to access these options. Tracks feature an output selector box if any groups are present, so you can route the track's output to a group rather than the Master section. The outputs of the groups are routed to the Master section. You can use a group to apply a single compressor effect to multiple tracks, for example.
Tip: double tapping a Solo button invokes 'half solo', which dims the other tracks rather than mute them completely.
MasteringA Master Limiter effect appears in the last effect slot automatically. This limiter keeps the signal below the highest possible level in order to avoid distortion.Settings up the Master Limiter is easy:
- Open the master limiter slot.
- Play back approx. 20 seconds of the loudest part of the song.
- Adjust the Drive knob so only a couple of low bars are covered. Don't cover high bars.
The EQ effect shows the Master output audio spectrum in a way that produces a straight horizontal line for a typical well-mastered recording. This serves as a guide for setting up the EQ.
Tip: cutting frequencies is better than boosting.
ExportingYour work can be exported in several ways.
Export Mix: Exports the output of the Master section as a .wav or .m4a audio file. The file can go to Document Picker, the General Pasteboard, the iTunes File Sharing folder, AudioShare or Email.
Note: Any MIDI tracks using an External MIDI Instrument or Virtual MIDI App instrument should be recorded to audio tracks before exporting.
Tip: Export Mix produces a mono file if the Master section's Mono button is engaged.
Export MIDI Tracks: Merges MIDI tracks into a single MIDI file. The file can go to Document Picker, the General Pasteboard, the iTunes File Sharing folder, AudioShare or Email. The MIDI file wil include the song's markers, if any.
Export audio stems: Exports MIDI tracks using a software instrument, audio tracks and groups as .wav audio files (groups are part of the Pro Extension). You can choose the tracks and/or groups. If "Include track effects" is on any audio effects in the track effect slots will be included. Exported groups include track en group effects regardless of this option. The file can go to Document Picker, the General Pasteboard, the iTunes File Sharing folder or AudioShare.
Export MultitrackStudio Song: Exports the song as a zip file. The file can go to Document Picker, the General Pasteboard or the iTunes File Sharing folder. A zipped song can be opened in MultitrackStudio for iPad by tapping Song followed by Import Song. In MultitrackStudio for Mac or Windows it can be opened using the Song menu's 'Import Song...' option.
The Document Picker provides access to iCloud Drive. DropBox is available too if the DropBox app is installed.
Files can be moved from the iTunes File Sharing folder to your Mac or PC using iTunes.
Tip: Exported audio/MIDI files can be imported in a different song.
TransportIn the top right corner of the screen are the start/stop button, rewind button and transport counter. You can swip left/right over the counter to step through the recent history of start positions and the last stop position.
The overview bar, located right above the tracks, features the familiar 'moving thumb'. You can double tap the thumb to start transport (this also works with editor needle grips).
MarkersYou can add a marker at the current transport position by tapping the counter and choosing Add Marker. The marker appears on the overview bar. You can delete a marker by tapping it, then tap the counter and choose Delete Marker. Swipe down over a marker to reveal more options.
LoopingIf the Loop button is engaged the transport will loop the looping region (assuming you've set a valid region). You can tap the position indicator and use the Set Loop Start/Set Loop End options to set the looping region. The overview bar shows the looping region.
Editor needle grips let you select a looping region and start the transport using 'double tap-and-move' (don't lift the finger after the second tap but start moving it instead).
Remote Control (requires Pro Extension)A MIDI device can be used to control the transport. You can set this up using the Studio menu's Remote Control option. If Learn is checked incoming MIDI messages will be mapped to the currently highlighted action. There are several actions availble for starting, stopping and changing position. The Re-Arm action engages the Rec buttons of the last recorded tracks.
Audio EffectsEach mixer section features three effect slots (MIDI tracks have two slots). A list of effects pops up after pressing a slot for a second. The following effects are available:
Auto Wah (requires Pro Extension)The Auto Wah is a resonant low pass filter. Its cut off frequency goes up if the signal level goes up and vice versa.
The Frequency knob sets the lower limit for the filter frequency. Range sets the difference between the highest and lowest filter frequency. Sensitivity determines how much the filter frequency changes in response to a certain input level. The Attack and Release knobs determine how fast the filter frequency responds to level changes.
Automated FaderThe Automated Fader is a volume control that can be programmed to change over time. It can be used to attenuate, amplify or mute part of a track. The fader will move in a linear fashion from one dot to another. Dots can be added, removed or moved using the editor.
ChorusThe Chorus effect adds thickness and warmth to the signal. The output signal is a mix of the input signal and a delayed copy of it. The delay time is modulated.
The Delay knob sets the average delay time. The Speed and Depth knobs control the modulation. The Mix knob sets the dry/wet ratio (0% being dry only, 100% being wet only). If the Stereo button is active a stereo chorus effect will be applied to mono signals (this is usually the effect you're looking for).
CompressorThe Compressor attenuates loud parts, while leaving soft parts untouched. Apart from this, it can make sounds 'fatter' or just make them fit better in the mix without any significant compression taking place.
The Threshold knob controls the level above which compression takes place. The Attack knob controls how fast the Compressor will attenuate loud signals, while the Release knob controls the time it takes to stop attenuating after a loud signal ended. Low Release times can cause distortion at low frequencies. The Gain knob sets the amount of gain applied after the compressing action is done. As the Compressor attenuates loud parts the overall level drops. The Gain knob compensates for this level drop. By activating the Auto Gain button the Compressor will automatically adjust the Gain knob.
You can choose from 3 different programs: Clean is as transparent as possible. This is a 'feedforward' compressor, which is the way typical modern compressors work. Vintage is less transparent, but has more character. This is a 'feedback' compressor, which is the way older (tube or opto) compressors work. Vintage Warm is like Vintage, but modified to produce more even harmonics.
The Clean program supports sidechaining. The Sidechain box allows for selecting another track as sidechain source, so 'ducking' etc. are possible. You can use the Monitor button to listen to the sidechain signal.
The Transfer Curve (bottom left) shows the effect of the Threshold, Ratio and Knee settings. It ignores the effect of the Gain knob. The horizontal axis represents the input, the vertical axis represents the output. The Level History (top left) shows the relative amount of time the input signal is at a certain level (the higher the bar, the more time).
Convolutor (requires Pro Extension)The Convolutor effect processes the audio signal using an impulse response. It comes with 4 plate reverb, 2 spring reverb and 2 digital reverb impulse responses. You can import your own impulse response files as well.
Tip: you can swipe over the Impulse Response box vertically to step through the impulse responses.
The Volume knob controls the output level. The 'Mix with input' button adds the dry input signal to the output of the effect. The Delay knob adds a delay to the processed signal. This can be useful for reverb applications. The Random button applies subtle modulation which makes reverbs sound smoother. You can switch this off if you're using non-reverb IRs like guitar speakers or mics.
DeEsserThe Deesser effect reduces 'S' sounds in vocals in a very unobtrusive manner. The De-Es knob controls the amount of attenuation applied to 'S' sounds. Applying too much attenuation will result in unnatural sounding vocals. The Threshold knob controls the level above which the Deesser becomes active. The Range knob controls the dynamic range the Deesser operates on. The threshold can be made to float within a certain range, so low-level parts can also be effectively deessed. The Frequency knob controls the frequency above which 'S' sounds are detected. If this control is set too low the Deesser will be too sensitive (i.e., sounds that are not a 'S' will be attenuated). By engaging the Monitor Button you can hear the filtered signal the Deesser uses. You can uses this option to judge whether the Frequency knob is set up correctly (ideally you only hear 'S' sounds and nothing else).
Dynamics (requires Pro Extension)The Dynamics effect combines a Limiter, a Compressor and an Expander in one effect. The Expander part can be used to attenuate background noise for example.
The Dynamics effect supports sidechaining. The Sidechain box allows for selecting another track as sidechain source, so 'ducking' etc. are possible. You can use the Monitor button to listen to the sidechain signal.
The Attack knob controls how fast the Compressor and Limiter will attenuate loud signals, while the Release knob controls the time it takes to stop attenuating after a loud signal ended. Low Release times can cause distortion at low frequencies. The Gain knob sets the amount of gain applied after dynamics processing has been done. The Limiter Threshold knob controls the level above which the limiting action takes place.
The Transfer Curve on the left shows the effect of the current settings of the Limiter Treshold knob, the Compressor/Expander Treshold, Ratio and Max.Att. (maximum attenuation) knobs and the Gain knob. The horizontal axis represents the input, the vertical axis represents the output. The vertical Gain Reduction meter shows the current amount of gain applied by the effect. The Level History (top left) shows the relative amount of time the input signal is at a certain level (the higher the bar, the more time).
EchoThe Echo effect produces one or more echoes, depending on the Feedback knob. If the Feedback knob is at zero position only one echo is produced. Otherwise a decaying sequence of echoes is produced.
The Delay knob controls the time it takes for the first echo to arrive (and the time between two consecutive echoes). The delay time is displayed in milliseconds and notes.The Lo-cut knob sets the frequency below which attenuation takes place (this typically happens in tape echo units).The Hi-cut knob sets the frequency above which attenuation takes place (this also happens in nature and in tape echo units).The TapeSound knob controls the amount of flutter and distortion.The Mix knob controls the level of the echoes that are mixed with the dry (input) signal (0% is dry only, 100% is echo only).
EQThe EQ effect consists of six tone control sections. The overall transfer is displayed in the display at the top, a small version appears in the effect slot itself. The colored dots correspond to the 6 sections. You can move them to control the section Gain and Frequency knobs.
Each section has its own Bypass button ('B').
The Lo Cut section is a lo cut filter. The cut off rate can be 6, 12 or 18 dB/octave. The cut-off frequency can be 20 Hz up to 2 kHz.
The Bass section can be a shelving or a one-octave bell-type equalizer. Boost/Attenuation can be -12 dB to +12 dB. Frequency can be 20 Hz to 1 kHz.
The Lo Mid section is a parametric equalizer. The center frequency can be 50 Hz up to 2 kHz. The Bandwidth can be 0.05 to 2 octaves. The Gain can be -12 dB to +12 dB.
The Hi Mid section is a parametric equalizer. The center frequency can be 500 Hz up to 12 kHz. The Bandwidth can be 0.05 to 2 octaves. The Gain can be -12 dB to +12 dB.
The Treble section can be a shelving or a one-octave bell-type equalizer. Boost/Attenuation can be -12 dB to +12 dB. Frequency can be 1 kHz to 20 kHz.
The Hi Cut section is a hi cut filter. The cut off rate can be 6, 12 or 18 dB/octave. The cut-off frequency can be 500 Hz up to 20 kHz.
The actual frequency spectrum of the audio signal can be shown in the graph. There's a Spectrum box below that graph, you can use it to choose which signal to show (None, Input, Output and Master Out, the latter is only available if the EQ is in the Master section). Options for averaging (real time, average or total average) and bands (no, 1/3 octave or critical bands) appear after you've selected a signal for display.
If the EQ is in the Master section you can display a reference spectrum, so you can compare the song's spectrum to other songs of yours, or to comparable commercial recordings. The built-in Standard reference spectrum is typical of many well mastered recordings. You can import an audio file and have its spectrum extracted. The new spectrum will be added to the list, and it can be renamed or deleted just like presets.
FlangerFlanging is the effect that occurs when two tape recorders playing back the same signal run slightly out of sync.
The Delay knob sets the average delay time. The Speed and Depth knobs control the modulation. The higher the Feedback knob position, the more effective the effect is. If the Stereo button is engaged the delay times of both stereo channels will be modulated with out-of-phase signals.
Guitar AmpThe Guitar Amp effect emulates three vintage guitar amps: Combo USA, Combo UK and Stack. It emulates the amp, its speaker and the microphone recording it. In addition up to three stompbox effects can be used.
The Level knob controls the level of the guitar signal presented to the amp. The three lights located next to the knob serve as level indicator. They can be used to make the amp see the same input level a hardware amp would. The SC (single coil) light will light if the level equals the output of a single coil pickup. The HB (humbucker) light will light if the level equals the level of a humbucker pickup. The Hot light will light if the level is even higher.
Three stompbox effects can be inserted between the guitar and the amp. Auto Wah, Booster, Chorus, Compressor, Delay, Echo, Flanger, Noise Gate, Phaser, Pickup EQ, Reverb and Tremolo are available. Each effect features two knobs.
The Booster stompbox is a treble booster. A huge number of classic rock sounds were created using a device like this.
The Pickup EQ stompbox can be used to change the characteristics of the guitar pickup. You can turn its Treble knob down to compensate for a shrill sound caused by a very short guitar cable, or to make a single coil pickup sound more like a humbucker. Turning Treble up can make a humbucker sound more like a single coil pickup.
Three amp models are available: Combo US, Combo UK and Stack.
The Combo US model features Volume, Treble, Mid and Bass knobs and a Bright switch. The Bright switch has no effect if the Volume knob is all the way up.
The Combo UK model features two channels. The Brilliant channel features Volume, Treble, Bass and Cut. The Cut knob attenuates high frequencies. The Normal channels features Volume, Bass and Cut knobs. The Bass knob cuts a certain amount of bass, closely emulating the the bass response of various versions of this particular amp.
The Stack model features Volume, Treble, Mid and Bass knobs. In addition there are Bottom, Hot and Gain buttons. These buttons change certain components of the amp, and hence change the sound. All variations correspond to versions of the hardware amp being modeled.
The Cntr/Edge knob controls the position of the recording microphone. 0% is at the center of the guitar cab's speaker, 100% is at the edge. The knob offers 7 positions. The Output knob controls the output level. Typical values range from 0 dB (overdrive sounds) to approx. 10 dB (clean sounds). The horizontal meter shows the output level. It is important to stay out of the red section if the amp is played live, in order to avoid clipping.
If you've purchased the Pro Extension there's a box below the Cntr/Edge knob which allows for loading your own speaker impulse response file. The Cntr/Edge is not available in this case.
Note: the impulse responses are shared with the Convolutor effect.
Master LimiterThe Master Limiter can be used to maximize the level of the mix. It's supposed to be used in the last (right hand) effect slot of the Master section.
The level is limited just below the digital full scale level (-0.3 dB). This small margin serves to avoid distortion in sample rate converters, CD players, soundcards etc.
The RMS Output meter indicates the perceived loudness. A pop song's chorus typically reads approx. -17 dB, that's why this level is marked by a triangle. Classical music typically reads approx. -23 dB during forte parts.
Note: the -17 dB and -23 dB levels correspond to the 0 dB levels of the K-14 and K-20 metering systems respectively.
In case you wonder why -17 dB equals the K system's -14 dB: MultitrackStudio uses math textbook RMS values, whereas the K system uses AES-17 RMS values which are 3 dB higher.
The Peak Statistics display shows the relative amount of time the input signal is at a certain level (the higher the bar, the more time). This gives you an idea as to what the limiter is doing to the audio signal. There's a colored 'curtain' on the right side of the display that can be moved using the Drive knob. The vertical bars that are covered by the curtain are limited. You'd typically want to limit a couple of small bars only.
Multiband Compressor (requires Pro Extension)The Multiband Compressor splits the audio signal in three frequency bands, and applies compression to each band. It is typically used in the Master section when a single band compressor can't provide the level of compression required without side effects like a loud kick drum noticeable muting high frequency parts.
The Bass/Mid and Mid/Treb knobs set the frequency band crossover points.
The three compressors have six knobs each: Threshold controls the level above which compression takes place. Gain sets the amount of gain applied after the compressing action is done. As the compressor attenuates loud parts the overall level drops. The Gain control compensates for this level drop. Ratio and Knee control the shape of the compression curve. Attack controls how fast the compressor will attenuate loud signals, while Release controls the time it takes to stop attenuating after a loud signal ended. Low Release times can cause distortion at low frequencies. Low Ratio settings and relatively low Threshold settings are typically used for mastering purposes.
The display shows the average gain (including the Gain knobs) as a solid line. If you want to apply compression without changing the frequency spectrum significantly you can use the Gain knobs to make each band's average gain approximately 0 dB. The bars at the top of the display represent the peak reduction (not including the Gain knobs).
Noise GateThe Noise Gate attenuates signals below a certain level. It can be used to remove noise from a track.
The Threshold knob determines the level below which the signal is attenuated. The Reduction knob controls the amount of attenuation applied to signals below the threshold. Applying lots of attenuation can make a Noise Gate slow. The Attack knob controls the time it takes for the Noise Gate to open (ie. let the signal through). The Release knob controls the time it takes for the Noise Gate to close (ie. attenuate the signal). The Hold knob sets an absolute time to wait after the signal drops below the threshold. The release phase starts when the Hold time has elapsed. The Open indicator lights when the gate is open.
The Level History on the left shows the relative amount of time the input signal is at a certain level (the higher the bar, the more time). Also, the current input level is shown horizontally at the bottom. This Level History makes it very easy to set up the threshold. There's a colored 'curtain' on the left side of the display that can be moved using the Threshold knob. The signal bars that are covered by the curtain are muted (the gate is closed).
Phase Inverter (requires Pro Extension)The Phase Inverter inverts the phase of the signal, just like a mixing desk's polarity switch.
PhaserThe Phaser effect has a selectable number of Notches (frequency regions that are attenuated) that can be moved through the frequency spectrum slowly. Traditional stomp-box type of phaser used with electric guitars typically have two notches, expensive studio devices have a higher number of notches. The Frequency knob controls the tonal character of the effect. The Range knob determines the distance the notches move. High values can lead to noticeable pitch shifts. The Speed knob controls the speed used to move the notches. The Depth knob controls how deep the notches are (the deeper the notches, the more intense the effect). The Stereo button can be used to create a stereo effect by moving the left and right channel notches in opposite directions.
ReverbThe Reverb effect offers four programs. 'Room' is a small room program, can be used to add 'ambience' to vocals. 'Chamber' is an echo chamber program. 'Hall' is a concert hall program. 'Plate' is plate program. The Reverb effect is typically used in the Effect Return section.
The Pre Delay knob controls the time it takes for the first reflection to appear. The Rvrb Time knob controls the reverb time. The Mix knob mixes the wet (ie. reverb) and the dry (ie. input) signal. 0 % is dry only, 100% is wet only. Lo Mult is a multiplier for the low frequency reverb time, while Lo Freq sets the frequency below which Lo Mult is active. Hi Cut sets the frequency above which the reverb time is decreased gradually. If Spin is not zero some of the reverb algorithm's parameters are modulated with a low frequency signal. This makes the reverb more random and smoother. Too much Spin will introduce noticeable pitch shifts in the reverb (easily noticeable on piano parts). Percussion parts may benefit from a higher Spin setting. Width controls the stereo width of the reverb.
RotorThe Rotor effect simulates a rotating speaker. It consists of bass and treble speakers rotating independently. The speakers are driven by a tube amplifier and two microphones are used to pick up the sound.
The Amplifier section contains the Drive control that controls the level the 'tube amplifier' is operating on. This can be used to add tube distortion. The Rotors sections controls the speaker's rotation speed. Tremolo is fast, Chorale is slow. The Mics section controls the microphone placement used to record the speaker cabinet. Distance controls the distance between the mics and the cabinet. Spread controls the stereo channel separation. Balance controls the relative levels of the treble and the bass speakers. The cabinet is miked with two microphones at a 180 degree angle. This angle can be reduced to 90 degrees using the Narrow Angle button.
SaturatorThe Saturator effect adds either Tube or Tape type distortion, depending on the Tube and Tape buttons. The Drive knob controls the amount of distortion.
The Tube program simulates a preamp with an output transformer. The preamp mainly generates second order harmonics, the transformer generates lower order odd harmonics. The Tube program adds harmonics, not unlike an exciter effect. The Drive knob controls the signal level that's fed to the virtual preamp's input. The VU meter shows the average value. At 0 dB total harmonic distortion is approx. 2%.
The Tape program models distortion, high frequency compression, low frequency peaks and wow & flutter. It can be used on individual tracks to make them sound a bit warmer. The Tape program can also be used on a full mix (ie. in the Master section). This makes the tracks blend better. The Drive knob Drive controls the virtual recording level. The VU meter shows the average value of the recording level. At 0 dB VU total harmonic distortion is approx. 1%. The LF Peak knob controls low frequency peaks ("bumps"). The Flutter knob controls the amount of wow & flutter.
Stereo ImagerThe Stereo Imager effect can change the width the the stereo image. It works with both stereo and mono input signals. The Width knob controls the stereo image width. The Reverse button reverses the left and right channels.
Mono input signals are converted to stereo using a filter. Shelve and Comb filter types are available. The Shelve option directs low frequencies to the left channel and high frequencies to the right channel. The Color knob controls the crossover-frequency. The Comb filter adds a delayed signal to the left channel and subtracts it from the right channel. The Color knob controls the distance between the notches of the comb filter.
The Stereo Imager is mono compatible: if the stereo outputs are summed the resulting signal is equal to the original mono input signal.
Transposer (requires Pro Extension)The Transposer effect shifts the pitch of the audio signal by the amount set by the Semitones and Cents knobs. Pitch can be shifted up to one octave up or down. The Transposer features two programs: Monophonic and Polyphonic.
The Monophonic program is optimized for monophonic ("one note at a time") audio. It features a Formant knob which shifts the formant of the sound. Pitch shifting sounds most natural if the formant is shifted in the other direction (ie. if pitch is shifted up 2 semitones the formant should go down two semitones).
The Polyphonic program is optimized for polyphonic audio. It is extremely CPU efficient while still producing good sounds. Part of the efficiency comes from a limited headroom, which is where the Level knob comes in. If the light above it lights up the audio signal is clipped and you should turn the Level knob down a bit. This typically won't happen, but it may if the signal has been amplified by other effects. If a track has been recorded at a very low level you can turn up the Level knob to maximize sound quality.
The Transposer doesn't work in a track that's recording.
TremoloTremolo modulates the level of the signal with a sine wave. The Speed and Depth knobs control modulation speed and depth. The Stereo button can be used to create a stereo effect by modulating the right channel with a phase shifted version of the sine wave.
TunerThe Tuner effect can be used to tune instruments like guitar, bass etc. It typically works best if it's used before any other effects (like the Guitar Amp).
VibratoVibrato modulates the pitch of the signal with a sine wave. The Speed and Depth knobs control modulation speed and depth. The Stereo button can be used to create a stereo effect by modulating the right channel with a phase shifted version of the sine wave.
Vocal Tuner (requires Pro Extension)The Vocal Tuner can be used to correct out-of-tune vocals. It features two programs: Natural, which corrects pitch in a very unobtrusive manner, and Modern, which sounds a bit synthetic and robot-like.
The Natural program's Speed knob sets the speed at which pitch is corrected. A slow setting leaves note onsets and vibrato intact.
The Modern program features more knobs. The Correction knob sets the amount by which out-of-tune notes are corrected. At 100% pitch is perfect, which usually sounds rather synthetic. Lower settings allow for more natural sounds. The ignore section contains knobs that make the tuner ignore certain parts of the sound in order to avoid unwanted artifacts. Ambient ignores background noise during silent parts. Sibilant ignores unpitched sounds like "s". Note that the Vocal Tuner doesn't do anything if you turn an "ignore" knob up by too much.
The key editor shows both the input pitch (dimmed color) and the output pitch (bright color). The Vocal Tuner quantizes pitch to the closest key. Using the key editor you can turn keys off for certain parts. If a key is off pitch is quantized to the closest key which is on. The Vocal Tuner doesn't do anything if all keys are off. The key editor looks like a one-octave pianoroll. You can select part of a horizontal bar that represents a key, and use the ON or OFF buttons to switch the selected part on or off. Selecting multiple adjacent keys is possible as well.
The Vocal Tuner is a mono effect, you can use it on a stereo track but the signal will be converted to mono. The Vocal Tuner doesn't work in a track that's recording.
AU PluginsAudio Units can be used in an effect slot just like a MultitrackStudio effect. The Options menu has a 'Large View' option, which makes the AU user interface larger.
IAA Effect AppsIAA effect apps can be used in an effect slot just like a MultitrackStudio effect. There can be only one instance of a particular app, and MultitrackStudio doesn't store or recall the app settings. Both are limitations of IAA.
For more information see the Audio Units, Inter-App Audio and Audiobus chapter.
MIDI InstrumentsThe left-hand slot of a MIDI track is an instrument slot rather than an effect slot. A list of instruments pops up after pressing an instrument slot for a second. The following instruments are available:
MultitrackStudio InstrumentsThe MultitrackStudio Instruments are a General MIDI compatible instrument collection. It contains over 100 instruments including a drum kit.
Use the box in the top left corner to pick an instrument. The instruments appear in five categories: Keyboard, String, Wind, Percussion and Synth. The large box in the middle contains knobs, drawbars or buttons which control the sound of the selected instrument. Not all instruments offer controls.
Tip: you can swipe over the instrument box vertically to step through the instruments.
Keyboard instruments: Acoustic and electric piano's feature a Strength knob which controls how hard the piano is played. It adds a value to a note's velocity. '2.5' is neutral position. The electric piano's Dynamics knob controls the velocity curve, ie. it controls how sensitive the piano is to key pressure. Bass and Treble are tone controls, as found on amplifiers or even some electric pianos. The Percussive Organ is percussive even if another note is playing. This is different from the Wheel Organ which follows the traditional style. Drawbar Organ / Percussive Organ rotor speed can be controlled using MIDI controller #1 (Modulation).\
String instruments: Bass guitars feature a Strength knob which controls how hard the bass is played. It adds a value to a note's velocity. '5' is neutral position. Violin Section, Violin Section 2, Viola Section, Cello Section and Contrabass Section are specialized versions of String Ensemble 1. There are two violin sections in order to lessen phasing problem with unison notes. Bowed strings feature a Vibrato knob similar to the winds (see below).
Wind instruments: Most wind instruments feature a Vibrato knob. Vibrato is applied automatically depending on the musical context (especially note duration). The knob controls the amount of vibrato. You can avoid vibrato on certain notes by programming MIDI controller #1. The value at approx. 300 ms after the note onset is the value that counts. It's not possible to add vibrato where the automatic system thinks it's not appropriate.
Percussion instrument: The Drum Kit uses MIDI channel 10 in order to be compatible with General MIDI. A suitable channel is picked automatically when you load an instrument, so you typically don't need to pay attention to the Channel box.
Synthesizers: Almost all synth sounds use the same synthesizer which comes in three versions: square, sawtooth and triangle. The bottom-right corner of the Controls box shows the version. The sawtooth version is used for most sounds. The four drawbars control the level of four oscillators. 8' is the root note. 8'D is a slightly detuned version. 5'1/3 is a fifth and 4' is one octave up. The Attack, Decay, Sustain and Release knobs represent a classic ADSR envelope. If Sustain is higher than "5" the level will rise during the decay phase. The pad sounds use this swelling effect.
Some instruments, like Harp and Drum Kit, ignore note-off events. A sustain-off event will mute all sounding notes for which a note-off event has been received, so you can use the sustain pedal to mute harp strings or cymbals etc.
SoundFont PlayerThe SoundFont Player can load .sf2 files. Many .sf2 files are available on the internet. Use the SoundFont box to load one of the available .sf2 files. The Import option allows for importing additional ones.
Use the Preset box to pick one of the presets provided by the current SoundFont. You can swipe over the preset box vertically to step through the presets quickly.
Matrix SamplerThe Matrix Sampler can load up to 16 audio samples. They can be played using the Matrix onscreen keyboard for example.
A 4x4 matrix of cells appears on the left. On tapping one of the 16 cells the corresponding controls appear on the right. The Load button allows for loading samples. Several options are available:
- Import an audio file from Document Picker, the General Pasteboard, iTunes File Sharing or AudioShare.
- Paste data copied from audio or MIDI track editor.
You can drag-and-drop audio files to cells.
The text box next to the load button shows the name of the cell, and allows for changing it. The name appears in the cell itself if a sample is loaded.
Volume controls the volume of the sample. Semitones and Cents control the pitch. Stretch can be used to make the sample shorter or longer, so it matches the song tempo. The box accepts fractions, so you can type '120/80' instead of '1.5' to make a 120 BPM sample match your 80 BPM song for example. If Oneshot is engaged the sample will play all the way to the end regardless of note-off messages.
You can use the play button to playback the sample. This can come in handy while copying data from a tracks to cells, when there's not enough room for the matrix keyboard.
The Matrix Sampler supports the following MIDI messages:
- Note On/Off
- Volume (cont. 7)
- Expression (cont. 11)
The cells are mapped to MIDI notes 36..51.
External MIDI InstrumentAn External MIDI Instrument sends the track's MIDI data to a MIDI Out device. This will typically be a MIDI device connected via USB.
To select the MIDI Out Device press the Studio button, choose Devices and make sure the right MIDI Out Device is selected. Enable 'Connect MIDI In and Out' if you're using separate master keyboard and synthesizer modules. Disable it if your keyboard has sounds of its own.
The Patch section determines which patch is used. You can use the Select button to select a patch by name. The Bank:prog box allows for entering bank and program numbers. The bank and program numbers (0..16383 and 0..127 respectively) are separated by a ':' character (for example: 1:2 means Bank 1 and Program 2).
The Controls section offers quick access to often used MIDI controllers. You can use the track's MIDI controller editor if you need more options.
The option button can be used to select a patchmap different from the default one specified in the Preferences pane. A patchmap contains the names corresponding to the bank:program numbers. You can create you own patchmap files, and then drag-and-drop your file to an External MIDI Instrument pane. Alternatively you can use iTunes to move your file to iPad. The MultitrackStudio patchmap file specification is available at www.multitrackstudio.com/patchmaps.php.
Tip: you can search the web for a .ins (instrument definition) file for your synth. It will be converted to a MultitrackStudio patchmap when it's dropped on an External MIDI Instrument pane.
External MIDI Instruments can be multitimbral (have multiple sounds). You can set up a MIDI controller to switch between sounds. The track editor's controller editor can then be used to switch sounds using the Articulation controller. The Articulations feature is intended for using multiple articulations of an instrument, like bowed and pizzicato violin, in a single track. The instrument pane's 'hamburger' button provides access to the Articulations feature.
AUi PluginsAudio Units can be used in an instrument slot just like a MultitrackStudio instrument. The Options menu has a 'Record MIDI output (to this track)' option, which is enabled by default. It allows for recording any keyboards the AU provides. This option requires iOS 12.
IAA Instrument AppsIAA instrument apps can be used in an instrument slot just like a MultitrackStudio instrument. There can be only one instance of a particular app, and MultitrackStudio doesn't store or recall the app settings. Both are limitations of IAA.
An app's onscreen keyboard can be recorded if you make the app send its MIDI output to the 'MTS IAA Recording' destination. Note that all data sent to 'MTS IAA Recording' gets recorded, even if it's sent by another app. Some apps may forward incoming MIDI messages to 'MTS IAA Recording'. You may have to make such apps stop using 'MTS IAA Recording' in order to avoid recording tracks that are playing back.
For more information see the Audio Units, Inter-App Audio and Audiobus chapter.
Virtual MIDI AppsA Virtual MIDI App instrument sends the track's MIDI data to an instrument app via MIDI. All running apps which support this appear in the instrument selector.
Note: you need to launch the app yourself to make it appear in the instrument selector.
The MIDI Input Device you've selected in the Devices pane has to be selected as input in the app too if you want to record it.
An app's onscreen keyboard can be recorded if you make the app send its MIDI output to the 'MTS Virtual MIDI Recording' destination. Note that all data sent to 'MTS Virtual MIDI Recording' gets recorded, even if it's sent by another app. Some apps may forward incoming MIDI messages to 'MTS Virtual MIDI Recording'. You may have to make such apps stop using 'MTS Virtual MIDI Recording' in order to avoid recording tracks that are playing back.
You can use Audiobus to make switching between apps and controlling the transport easier.
Up to four instrument apps can be used simultaneously. Multiple tracks can use the same app (you can route 16 tracks to an app for example, each track using a different MIDI channel).
Note: the track's volume fader, pan knob and mute/solo buttons won't work if the app doesn't respond to standard volume/pan MIDI messages.
A MIDI Effect processes MIDI messages. The data that appears in the track editor is sent to the MIDI effect. The MIDI effect processes the data and sends it to the MIDI instrument. A recording track records the data coming from your MIDI keyboard (ie. the MIDI effect isn't in the recording).
A MIDI effect's 'hamburger' menu features an 'Apply to track' option. This option applies the effect to the track, and engages the effect's Bypass button.
To add a MIDI Effect slot to a MIDI track, click the Instrument Slot's down arrow and then click the Add MIDI Effect slot option. Likewise, to remove a MIDI Effect slot click its down arrow and then click the Remove MIDI Effect slot option. A track can have only one MIDI effect slot. A list of MIDI effects pops up after pressing a MIDI effect slot for a second. The following MIDI effects are available:
ArpeggiatorThe Arpeggiator turns a chord into an arpeggio. The arpeggio pattern is fully customizable:
Key 1..Key 4 are the keys that are currently being played, Key 1 being the lowest in pitch. Random Key is a random pick of one of these keys. You can pick one (or no) key for each step.
Octave Up / Octave Down can be checked to transpose the note.
Accent can be checked to make the note a bit louder. The Accent knob determines the amount added to the note velocity.
The maximum number of steps in the pattern is 32. Rate determines the speed at which the steps are played, it can be 'normal' notes like 1/16 or triplets. Swing sets the amount by which 2nd, 4th, 6th (and so on) steps are delayed, 50% means "no swing". Gate is the (relative) note duration, you can turn this down to make the note sound mode staccato. If Fixed Velocity is engaged the velocity of the incoming notes is ignored and a fixed value (90) is used instead.
If Hold is engaged incoming note-off messages are ignored, so the arpeggio keeps playing when you've released the keys. The notes will be stopped when you play a new chord. This feature can make playing the arpeggiator using a MIDI keyboard easier. You can push and release the sustain pedal to stop the arpeggiator.
Poly ModulatorThe Poly Modulator generates per-note controllers using an envelope and a low frequency oscillator (LFO). Each note gets its own envelope and LFO, they both start when the note starts. The Poly Modulator works with instruments that respond to MIDI 2.0 per-note controllers or MPE.
The envelope consists of four phases, the duration if the phases it controlled by the Delay, Attack, Hold and Release knobs. The Note to Time Velocity and Note knobs make the envelope phase times depend on the note velocity and note number (pitch) respectively. The Vel button makes the envelope level depend on the note velocity.
The 3 buttons next to the LFO graph offer sine, triangle or square wave forms. The Shape knob moves the middle zero crossing, so it can turn the triangle into a sawtooth etc.
The Speed knob controls the oscillator frequency. If the Beat button is engaged the Speed knob offers several beat values instead of Hz, so the actual speed depends on the song tempo at the time the note is played.
The Envelope to Speed and Level knobs apply the envelope to the LFO speed and amplitude. At positive values the envelope's Hold level is neutral, and the rest reduces speed/amplitude. At negative values the envelope's Delay level (and the level after the Release phase) is neutral, and the rest reduces speed/amplitude.
There are 3 Destination sections, each one can send a mix of the envelope and the LFO to a per-note controller. Env and LFO control the amount of the Envelope an LFO that's added to the destination controller. It can be positive or negative.
Note adds an amount to the destination controller depending on the note's note number (pitch). Middle C is neutral, so either lower notes get a negative value and higher note a positive value, or vice versa. This is a 'static' modulation, it doesn't depend on the Envelope or LFO. Offset adds a fixed offset to the destination controller.
Velocity CurveThe Velocity Curve effect re-maps note-on velocities. You can use this to make the note-on velocities coming from your keyboard cover the 1..127 range nicely, so a multi-layer piano instrument responds correctly, for example.
Multiply multiplies the incoming velocities. Curve bends the curve in a non-lineair way. Offset shifts the curve up or down.
The math: output = Offset + (input x Multiply) ^ Curve
AU PluginsAudio Units can be used in a MIDI effect slot just like the Arpeggiator. This requires iOS 12.
Tip: switch off iPad four/five-finger multitasking gestures in order to avoid moving to another app accidentally.
The onscreen MIDI Keyboard can be used to play the instruments. The button in the bottom right corner of the screen makes the keyboard visible. Various layouts are available (see below).
The Options button provides access to various options:
- Glide: the Fourths and string instruments support smoothly gliding from one note to the other.
- String Bend: the string instruments support string bending.
- Finger Vibrato: guitar/cello style vibrato movements.
- Aftertouch: polyphonic aftertouch messages are sent if you move a finger upwards.
- Velocity: the higher your finger touches the screen, the higher the velocity.
- Use per-note pitch bend: Glide, String Bend and Finger Vibrato generate MIDI pitch bend events. This option makes them use MIDI 2.0 per-note pitch bend messages. Without this only monophonic parts can be played while Glide or String Bend is enabled, and Finger Vibrato only works while just a single note is playing.
- Slider: the slider on the left can be assigned to any MIDI controller (including note velocity and pitch bend).
There's also an option an create/recall presets.
The following layouts are available:
KeyboardThe keyboard layout is a piano keyboard. The bar at the top can be used to move the keys horizontally. It also allows for making the keys wider or narrower using two fingers.
FourthsThe fourths layout provides 8 rows of cells. You can use multiple fingers per row. If Glide is enabled you can glide from one cell to the next (on the same row). Typically used with MIDI 2.0 or MPE capable instruments.
Guitar, Bass and ViolinThe string layouts offer horizontal strings with frets. You can play a note by pressing a string (place your finger between two frets). String layouts can be capoed using the Options button.
MatrixThe Matrix layout can be used with the Matrix Sampler. The pad mapping conforms to the Matrix Sampler's matrix mapping. The 8 pads on the left correspond to the lower 8 cells of the Matrix Sampler, the 8 pads on the right correspond to the upper 8 cells.
ChordsThe Chords layout allows for playing chords with a single finger. It offers 12 keys for major chords and 12 keys for minor chords. You can use the 6/7/Maj7 buttons on the left to add a note to the chord. The narrow vertical slider sets "the position of the keyboard player's hand on the keyboard".
DrumThe drum layout uses GM instrument mapping. You can close the hihat pedal movements by moving your finger: first put a finger on the HH Open pad to 'hit it with a stick', then move the finger to the HH Close pad to close it with the pedal.
AU PluginAn AU MIDI effect can effectively replace the built-in keyboard.
Automation (requires Pro Extension)
The mixer sections and audio effects can be automated (ie. the knobs can be programmed to turn automatically while the transport is running). This can be used to change a track's volume level, to add more reverb to part of a track etc.
You can add automation by recording knob movements while the transport is running, or by using the automation editor.
A small blue square appears in the bottom right corner of an automated control. In case of AU plugins it appears next to the Bypass button or Channel selector. Automation can be undone by deleting all dots in the editor.
Recording fader/knob movementsFader and knob movements can be recorded while the transport is running. The Automation Recording button (near the bottom right corner of the screen) needs to be engaged for this. By default, the control won't return to the old value until transport stops ('latch mode'). The control will revert to the old value upon lifting your finger immediately if the Automation Touch Mode button is engaged.
Note: automation recording isn't available while transport is looping.
Using the Automation Editor
A control's Automation Editor can be made visible using the Automation button in the bottom right corner of the screen. First, tap the Automation button, so it turns white. 'A' labels will appear on all automatable controls while the Automation button is engaged. Tap one to pop up its automation editor.
Audio Units, Inter-App Audio and AudiobusThere are three ways to use other apps with MultitrackStudio.
Audio Units are the preferred way to integrate 3rd party apps in MultitrackStudio.Apps that aren't available as Audio Unit can be used via Inter-App Audio or Audiobus.
Use Inter-App Audio if you want to record MIDI or the unprocessed audio signal. After recording the track the app is still used to playback the recording.
Use Audiobus if you want to record the app's audio output. Once recording is done the app is no longer needed.
Audio UnitsAudio Units integrate in MultitrackStudio just like AU or VST plugins do under macOS or Windows. They basically behave just like built-in MultitrackStudio effect/instruments.
Inter-App AudioApps which support Inter-App Audio (IAA) can be loaded in an effect or instrument slot:
- The app's Rec button toggles the Rec button of the track it's in. You need to press the play button to actually start the transport.
If you're recording the IAA app using the 'Practice Mode tracks' option the recording track's Rec button will be used instead. This only works if there's exactly one audio track which uses the 'Practice Mode tracks' input.
- The app's rewind/play/rec buttons don't work if you left MultitrackStudio by pressing iPad's home button. You need to tap an effect/instrument slot instead to switch to an IAA app.
- Some apps don't work correctly if the app wasn't running already before loading it in MultitrackStudio. In particular, playback can be silent. Make sure these apps are running before you load them in MultitrackStudio.
- 'Generator' apps (apps having no MIDI or audio inputs) can be used in a MIDI track's Instrument Slot. The app obviously won't respond to any notes appearing in the track editor etc. Apps that don't need user interaction will work right away (eg. a drummer app which drums along with the tempo set by MultitrackStudio). Other apps can be recorded to an audio track using the 'Practice Mode tracks' input option.
- Do not use MIDI Clock to sync the app with MultitrackStudio. The IAA protocol provides means for syncing in a far more reliable way. If an IAA app needs MIDI Clock please ask the developer to support syncing via IAA.
- MultitrackStudio doesn't store/recall the app's settings. iOS doesn't allow for that.
- There can be only one instance of a particular app, that's an iOS limitation. You'll have to remove the existing instance in order to be able to add a new one. After pressing an audio track's name box you can choose 'Apply effects', this will apply the effects to the track and remove them from the effect slots. MIDI tracks have a 'Copy to new audio track' option, this creates a new audio track containing an audio version of the MIDI track.
- Instrument apps: while an app is loaded there's no way to change the MIDI channel MultitrackStudio uses for this app. It's recommended to switch your apps to 'omni' mode (if available), so it responds to all MIDI channels. Otherwise you need to make sure the current instrument uses the right MIDI channel before loading the app. If need be you can temporarily load the MultitrackStudio Instruments to change the channel.
- An instrument app's onscreen keyboard can be recorded if you make the app send its MIDI output to the 'MTS IAA Recording' destination.
- If you want to use an instrument app as a Virtual MIDI App after it has been used with IAA you'll probably have to kill it first.
- Punch-in / Sound on Sound recording: any IAA effects in the track aren't applied to the 'old' signal. The 'old' signal of tracks using an IAA instrument is inaudible.
AudiobusAudio tracks record the Audiobus output instead of the audio input device if you swipe horizontally over the track's Rec button and choose 'Audiobus'. If multiple Audiobus sources are available there'll be multiple options, and they'll contain the name of the corresponding app. Using Audiobus you can record the processed signal of an effect app or the audio output of an instrument app.
- Start the Audiobus app before any other audio apps (including MultitrackStudio).
- In the Audiobus app choose 'MultitrackStudio for iPad' in the Output box.
- The Audio Latency setting (in the Studio menu's Devices pane) has no effect while the Audiobus app is running.
- To sync an app using MIDI Clock tap the Studio button and choose Devices. Check the apps you want to sync to MultitrackStudio. Alternatively switch on the MTS MIDI Clock virtual output and pick this as input in the app(s).
MPE / MIDI 2.0MultitrackStudio uses the MIDI 2.0 protocol internally throughout. The MIDI 2.0 registered per-note controllers and per-note pitchbend are supported. The MultitrackStudio Instruments respond to MIDI 2.0 per-note pitch bend and release time. In addition, the MultitrackStudio Instruments synths respond to MIDI 2.0 per-note brightness and timbre (for the filter cut off frequency and resonance) and per-note attack and decay. All editors update the per-note controls automatically. Whenever notes are moved, deleted etc. the associated per-note controls are updated.
The per-note controls appear in the controller editor. The view changes automatically when a note is selected: if you click a D4 in the pianoroll the per-note controller editor will show the values for D4, for example. Alternatively you can tap the left hand side of the controller editor, go to the Per Note section's 'Show for note' option and pick a note from the list.
MIDI 2.0 MIDI devices and virtual MIDI apps are supported (requires iPadOS 14). The MIDI 2.0 protocol is used if 'the other side' uses this protocol.
Conversion to/from MPE (MIDI Polyphonic Expression) is applied where appropriate, so you can use MPE keyboards and plugins etc.
- The Studio-->Devices pane has an MPE checkbox for the MIDI Input Device.
- AU and IAA instruments receive per-note pitch bend, per-note brightness and poly aftertouch via MPE. Switching to MPE happens automatically when per-note pitch bend or per-note brightness are sent to the plugin.
In iPadOS 15 AU plugins that support the MIDI 2.0 protocol will receive MIDI 2.0 instead of MPE.
- MPE keyboards send per-note pitchbend, brightness and aftertouch. The Keyboard Mapper, available from the Rec menu at the top of the screen, can map these controllers to other MIDI 2.0 per-note controllers like expression.
- The MIDI Out Device uses 'Multi-timbral expression' if per-note pitch bend, brightness or expression are sent. Like MPE, each notes gets its own MIDI channel. Channels 12..16 and the channel used by the track are used for this purpose. This adds to 6 channels (5 if the track uses channel 12 or above). The other channels are available for other tracks. 'Multi-timbral expression' won't be used if the connected device uses the MIDI 2.0 protocol.
Lyrics PrompterThe Lyr button in the bottom right corner of the screen makes the Lyrics Prompter visible. You can longtap the prompter to pop up the Lyrics/Chords Editor. Any lyrics/chords in imported MIDI files will appear in the editor, and they'll be included in exported MIDI files.
Bars are separated by '|' characters. Inside a bar, beats are separated by '-' characters. The chords editor understands multiple chords without '-' separators if the number of beats in the bar can be divided by the number of chords. You can, for example, use '|C F|' instead of '|C - C - F - F|'.
Any text which is not in a bar is ignored, you can use this to add comments. Spaces can be used anywhere you like. However, spaces aren't allowed in chord names (ie. you must type 'Gsus4' instead of 'G sus 4'). The editor underlines chords which aren't recognized, underlined chords won't be included in exported MIDI files.
There must be at least one MIDI track in a Song in order to be able to align the chords and lyrics with the tracks.
The Lyrics Prompter and the MIDI keyboard can't be visible at the same time.
Mouse, trackpad and keyboardNo matter how good MultitrackStudio for iPad's touchscreen support is, a keyboard and mouse can be convenient at times. MultitrackStudio for iPad fully supports this (requires iPadOS 13.4). There's right click and double click instead of longtap or swiping over buttons. Keyboard shortcuts are similar to MultitrackStudio for macOS. The editors work very similar too. Just a few actions require pressing the mouse button until the selector appears, most notably selecting a part in a MIDI editor. Lassoing and moving notes etc. can be done right away, adding notes can be done using the Option key.
The Esc button can be used to cancel menus etc. If your keyboard doesn't have one you can use Ctrl-[.
TransportThese shortcuts work in the main screen, effect/instrument panes and editor panes:
- Home or Option-Left Arrow: Go to start of song.
- End or Option-Right Arrow: Go to end of song.
- Space Bar: Toggle transport start/stop.
- Shift-Space Bar: Start at last start position (if transport stopped), Stop and move to start position (if transport running).
- Left/Right Arrow: Rewind/Fast Forward.
Several modifier keys can be used combined with the left/right arrow keys:
- Command: Walk through history of recent start positions (and the last stop position if transport is stopped).
- Ctrl: Move one pixel in the editors. The actual amount of time depends on the zoom level.
- Page Up/Down: Move one editor page. The actual amount of time depends on the zoom level.
- Command-L: Toggle Loop button.
- F6: Loop selected part of focused track.
- F7: Set looping region start point.
- F8: Set looping region end point.
- Command--: Zoom Out.
- Command-+: Zoom In.
- Shift-Command-R: Toggle Automation Recording button.
- Shift-Command-T: Toggle Automation Touch Mode button.
- Option-M: Add Marker.
- Command-J: Toggle Soft Monitoring.
- Command-P: Toggle Punch In/Out recording.
- Option-Command-P: Toggle Sound On Sound recording.
- Option-Command-A: Add Audio Track.
- Option-Command-M: Add MIDI Track.
- Option-Command-I: Import audio/MIDI file.
- Command-K: Show Keyboard Mapper pane.
- Command-G: Toggle Snap button.
- Command-B: Toggle Seconds / Bars.
- Command-E: Show Tempo / Time Signature Editor.
- Option-Command-E: Show Song Editor.
- Command-U: Show Multi MIDI Editor with all MIDI tracks.
- Option-Command-U: Show Multi MIDI Editor with MIDI tracks that have same color as focused track.
- Option-Command-C: Show Chords Editor.
- Option-Command-L: Show Lyrics Editor.
- Command-D: Show Devices pane.
- Command-,: Show Preferences pane.
- Shift-Command-?: Show manual.
- Up/Down Arrow: Scroll mixer sections up/down. Add Command key to scroll one page.
- Ctrl-A: Open Add Track menu.
- Ctrl-E: Open Edit menu.
- Ctrl-N: Open transport position menu.
- Ctrl-R: Open Recording menu.
- Ctrl-S: Open Song menu.
- Ctrl-U: Open Studio menu.
- Ctrl-W: Edit transport position box.
The mixer section which has focus responds to keyboard shortcuts. A dot appears on the left hand side of the mixer section indicating it is focused. Tab and Shift-Tab can be used to move focus. Clicking or tapping a section (including any of its controls) will focus that section as well.
There are keyboard shortcuts for Volume faders and rotary knobs as well. An edit field appears in which a new value can be typed. Pressing Enter accepts the new value, Esc discards it.
Instead of typing a value you can use the up/down arrow keys to move the control. Note that you'll have to press Esc to accept this value, since Enter accepts the edit field's value.
- Tab/Shift-Tab: Focus next/previous section. Add Ctrl key to focus last / first section.
- Ctrl-C: Toggle Rec button focused track.
- Ctrl-D: Open editor focused track.
- Ctrl-M: Toggle Mute button focused section.
- Ctrl-O: Toggle Solo button focused section (Mono on Master section).
- Ctrl-P: Edit pan knob focused track.
- Ctrl-Y: Toggle Play button focused track.
- Ctrl-V: Edit volume slider focused track.
- Ctrl-1: Edit effect send 1 knob focused track (2= second effect send etc.).
- Ctrl-F1: Open first slot (effect/instrument) focused section.
- Ctrl-F2: Open second slot focused section.
- Ctrl-F3: Open third slot focused section.
Most editors can be operated using the standard macOS keyboard shortcuts. A track editor can only be controlled using keyboard shortcuts if the track has focus.
The following shortcuts are supported:
- Command-/: Edit
- Command-Z: Undo
- Shift-Command-Z: Redo
- Command-X: Cut
- Command-C: Copy
- Command-V: Paste
- Delete: Delete
- Command-A: Select All
- Shift-Command-I: Make punch-in point equal to transport position
- Shift-Command-O: Make punch-out point equal to transport position
- Shift-Left/Right Arrow: Shift editors left/right while keeping transport position
- Option: Temporarily switch to Add mode (click to add notes or dots)
The Multi MIDI Editor also features:
- Up/Down Arrow: scroll up/down. Add Command key to scroll all the way up/down.
- Tab / Shift-Tab: make next/previous track active.
- Option-M: Move selected notes to active track.
- Tab / Shift-Tab: to next/previous bar.
- Command--: Zoom Out.
- Command-+: Zoom In.
- Command-R: Reset Level History (Compressor, Dynamics, Noisegate), Reset spectrum averaging (EQ), Reload plugin AU/AUi plugin).
- Ctrl-B: Toggle effect Bypass button.
- Ctrl-C: Edit instrument Channel box.
- Ctrl-M: Toggle sidechain effect Monitor button.
- Ctrl-P: Open Presets menu.
MultitrackStudio Instruments pane
- Up/Down Arrow: Step through available instruments.
SoundFont Player pane
- Up/Down Arrow: Step through presets provided by current soundfont.
External MIDI Instrument pane
- Up/Down Arrow: Change Program
- Shift-Up/Down Arrow: Change Bank
MIDI keyboardThe MIDI Keyboard can be played, but the shortcuts don't appear until the corresponding key on the computer keyboard has been pressed while MultitrackStudio for iPad is running. You typically need to press 1..9, A..Z and a couple of keys on the right hand side.
Mouse modifier keys
Mouse modifier keys change the effect of a mouse click if you keep the key down while clicking.
Standard modifier keys
- Command (while selecting): Select item without deselecting existing items (MIDI editor notes, track Solo buttons)
- Option (while dragging): Copy item instead of move it (editors and effect slots)
- Option (on Overview Bar thumb): drag to select looping region and start transport
- Shift (on Start button): Start at last start position
Track buttonsThe Play, Rec, and Mute buttons of all tracks will be toggled if you keep the Command key down while clicking a track's button. This also works for the track name boxes, so you can open/close all track editors in one go.
You can use the Option key to toggle same-color tracks only. This also works with the Solo buttons.
You can use Click..Shift-Click to toggle any range (click a button on the first track, and then shift-click the same button on the last track).
- Command (on edges selected part): Stretch selected part
- Shift (Pianoroll/Drum editors): ignore the Snap button, so you can add/move notes anywhere
MouseYou can right click instead of long tapping or sliding over things like audio track Rec buttons or Preset menu items.
Trackpad gestures can be used in various places.
Two finger swipe:
- Move mixer sections vertically.
- Move faders and rotary knobs (only horizontal movements work in main screen).
- Scroll lists.
- Scroll editors horizontally.
- Scroll MIDI editors vertically.
- Zoom editors horizontally.
- While pointer is over left hand side of editor: zoom editor vertically.
The mouse wheel can be used in various places:
- Move mixer sections vertically.
- Move faders and rotary knobs (in main screen use horizontal movements or add the Shift key).
- Scroll lists.
- Scroll MIDI editors vertically.
Combined with Command key:
- Zoom editors horizontally.
- While mouse is over left hand side of editor: zoom editor vertically.
- Zoom Lyrics Prompter.
Apple PencilThe Apple Pencil isn't used for scrolling, this allows for the editors to work with significantly less press-and-hold operations. Just a few actions require pressing the pencil until the selector appears, most notably selecting a part in a MIDI editor. Lassoing and moving notes etc. can be done right away. Adding notes can be done by moving the pen down (you don't have to wait for the selector to appear).
It's highly recommended to turn off 'Scribble' in iPadOS 14 or newer. Scribble makes MultitrackStudio's text fields cumbersome to use, as most of them require pressing Return.
TricksSome features aren't immediately obvious:
- Press a track's name box for a second to rename or remove the track.
- Move a track's name box horizontally to change the order of the tracks.
- Move an effect slot horizontally to move it to a different slot.
- Grab an effect/instrument 'title bar' to move it.
- Up to 16 audio/MIDI tracks, audio tracks can be mono or stereo.
- Editors: audio, pianoroll, drum, score, MIDI patterns, MIDI controllers, tempo/time signature and song.
- One effect return section.
- One master section.
- Three effect slots per mixer section (two for MIDI tracks).
- Audio Effects: Automated Fader, Chorus, Compressor, DeEsser, Echo, EQ, Flanger, Guitar Amp, Master Limiter, Noise Gate, Phaser, Reverb, Rotor, Saturator, Stereo Imager, Tremolo, Tuner and Vibrato.
- MIDI instruments: MultitrackStudio Instruments (General MIDI compatible), SoundFont Player, Matrix Sampler, up to four Virtual MIDI Apps and one CoreMIDI output device.
- MIDI Effects: Arpeggiator, Poly Modulator and Velocity Curve.
- Supports Audio Unit effects and instruments and MIDI effects (the latter require iOS 12).
- Supports Inter-App Audio effects and instruments.
- Supports Audiobus (acts as output in Audiobus app).
- Supports MPE and MIDI 2.0 (MIDI 2.0 requires iPadOS 14).
- MIDI sources: onscreen keyboard (keyboard, fourths, guitar, bass, violin, matrix, chords and drum layouts) and one CoreMIDI input device. Supports Bluetooth LE MIDI.
- Supports Bluetooth audio output.
- Audio sample rate: 44.1 or 48 kHz.
- Imports .wav, .aif, .mp3, .mid and various other audio file types.
- Exports .wav and .mid files.
- Import/export audio/MIDI via Document Picker, Copy/paste, iTunes File Sharing, AudioShare or email.
- Imports/exports .zip file containing all files needed to open song, compatible with MultitrackStudio for Windows/macOS.
- Lyrics/chords prompter and editor.
- Also works with mouse/trackpad/keyboard (requires iPadOS 13.4).
- Up to 64 tracks.
- Up to 3 extra Effect Slots. (*)
- Up to 3 extra Effect Returns. (*)
- Up to 8 Groups. (*)
- Multichannel audio playback. (*)
- Mixer and effect automation.
- Audio pitch shifting in track editors.
- Time stretching in track editors.
- Tempo editor can process audio tracks.
- Stretch and Stretch Accelerando in tempo editor.
- Multi MIDI Editor (edit multiple tracks in a single editor).
- Convolutor effect with Vintage Reverbs.
- Load custom speaker IR in Guitar Amp.
- Sidechain input on Compressor and AU effects that support it.
- Dynamics effect, supports sidechaining.
- Multiband Compressor effect.
- Auto Wah effect.
- Phase Inverter effect.
- Transposer effect.
- Vocal Tuner effect.
- Sample rate conversion in Export Mix dialog.
- Create new song using current as template.
- Remote Control for transport ("MIDI Learn")
(*) Limited by iPad screen size. There's just one additional space on iPad smaller iPads. 10.5" iPads have two spaces, 12.9" iPads have three spaces. An Effect Slot, an Effect Return and the Output Selector (for groups and multichannel playback) take one space each.
Copyright (C) 2001-2023 Bremmers Audio Design.
The content of this manual is subject to change without notice. Although every precaution has been taken in the preparation of this manual, the author assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions. Neither is any liability assumed for damages resulting from the use of the information herein.
ZTX Time Stretch/Pitch Shift technology licensed from Zynaptiq GmbH, https://www.zynaptiq.com/ztx/, (c) Zynaptiq GmbH
Effect presets by Christian C. Thompson, www.christiancthompson.com