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Editing MIDI data in the MIDI Editor

From: Pro Tools 10 Essential Training

Video: Editing MIDI data in the MIDI Editor

Pro Tools has a dedicated window for editing MIDI and instrument tracks called the MIDI Editor window. It's great for fine-tuning MIDI performance data. Fortunately, it shares the lot of common functionality with the regular Edit window. However, the MIDI Editor also offers up some unique features that you'll probably learn to love. Let's take a look at it. You can access the docked version by going down to this button right here and clicking on it, and that expands this whole window. This is the docked version of the MIDI Editor.

Editing MIDI data in the MIDI Editor

Pro Tools has a dedicated window for editing MIDI and instrument tracks called the MIDI Editor window. It's great for fine-tuning MIDI performance data. Fortunately, it shares the lot of common functionality with the regular Edit window. However, the MIDI Editor also offers up some unique features that you'll probably learn to love. Let's take a look at it. You can access the docked version by going down to this button right here and clicking on it, and that expands this whole window. This is the docked version of the MIDI Editor.

To close it you can just go back to this button and click it, and what I really want to show you is how to open up a separate window for this. So we can go up to Window > MIDI Editor and this opens up an entire MIDI Editor window, and you'll see that we have the full-screen version here. Before I show you more about it, I want to talk to you about some other ways that we can open up the MIDI Editor. If we go up to Setup > Preferences and on the MIDI page, you can say we can choose Double-Clicking a MIDI Clip Opens the MIDI Editor.

So anytime that you double-click a MIDI clip anywhere in Pro Tools, the MIDI Editor window will open up. I am going to click OK. You should also note that you can right-click on MIDI clip to access the MIDI Editor, and let me show you that really quick. If you go back to the Edit window and I right-click on this, you can scroll all the way down here and say Open in MIDI Editor. I'll go back to the MIDI Editor window. So let's take a look at what's going on in this MIDI Editor window.

We'll start at the top. We've got the Solo and Mute buttons, and here we have the Notation Display Enabled button, which if I click this, you'll see notes instead of the piano roll. So now we have our notation showing here instead of the regular piano roll. Next we have our edit tools, and you're familiar with these from previous movies. We've got the zoomer, the trim, selector, and grabber that are all part of the Smart tool here, the Scrubber and the Pencil tool.

Next, we have the track that's actually showing here, and it's the Pencil-Enabled track. The Pencil-Enabled track is the one shown here in the tracks list that has the pencil next to it, and we'll talk more about that in a minute. Next, we have the MIDI Note Duration and that's when we add a new note, that's the duration that it will be, and we can choose from any of these. If we wanted to add a quarter note, then we can choose quarter note here. Next we have the MIDI Note Velocity, and that's the velocity that you'll have when you create a new note in this window.

And next to that is the play MIDI Notes When Editing, so anytime that you edit or add a new note, it'll actually be played and you'll hear it. We can click this on or off. If it's off then you won't hear when it's edited. And now we have the Mirrored MIDI Editing and the Link Timeline and Edit Selection buttons, and you're familiar with these from previous movies. We have the edit modes. We have the Grid button, which we can show the gridlines or not have them shown, by clicking on that.

We got the Grid Size and we can change that. Maybe we want to see eighth notes. And finally, over in this area, this indicates the location of where the cursor is. So if I go down here into this track, it shows the timing and the pitch value, so we have the timing on the left and the pitch on the right. All the way over here on the right side we have the target button, and if we deactivate this, then we can actually open multiple MIDI Editor windows. And finally, we have the MIDI Editor toolbar menu, and we can change some certain things here, what we want to see in this window. And you'll see that we have the Tracks list shown here.

The Tracks list is over here on the left side, and this shows us which tracks are shown in the MIDI Editor. Right now, only one of them is shown, the piano track, and that's indicated by this circle here. If we want to add some additional tracks in here, we can; just click on the circles, so now we have the trumpets and the piano shown. The trumpet notes are shown in the color purple here, whereas the piano is in red. So as I mentioned before, the pencil icon shown here actually indicates what track we're going to be able to add notes to, in the MIDI Editor window.

So if I go down into the MIDI Editor and I want to add some notes, I can choose the Pencil tool here, and click and add a note, and that goes on to the piano track. If I change this and put that pencil icon on the trumpet track, now I've added a note onto the trumpet track. If I want to add notes to both tracks at once, I can Shift+Click and have the pencil icon on both tracks, and now when I create a note, it's going to be on both tracks. Let's take a look at these two buttons.

The top one here is the color coding by track button. If we activate that, the tracks in the MIDI Editor are temporarily assigned to one of 16 fixed colors, in the order that they appear on the Tracks list, and those colors are indicated right here in the Tracks list. Now why would we need to use this button if the tracks were already colored as they were previously? Well, it's just a matter of how you set up your color coding in Pro tools. If the tracks and notes are not already colored, then using this button would be helpful, but since the tracks that I was showing you here before were already colored, then I don't really need to use this button.

So I'm going to deactivate it. The next button down here is the color by velocity, and if I click that, you'll see that all of the MIDI notes are all the same color now, red, and the red on all of the tracks that are displayed. The notes with the lowest velocity are lighter in color, and the notes with the higher velocities are darker. So if I take this note right here-- I'll use the Grabber tool, in fact, choose that note and I'll grab the velocity, and turn it way down, you'll see that it's a lot lighter.

If I turn it way up, it'll get darker. So now it's a deep dark red. Now personally, I find this confusing if you've multiple tracks shown in this window, and I don't really see the point of using this button anyway, especially if we have our preference set to show velocity. So if we go up to Setup > Preferences and we look in the Display tab, we already have MIDI Note Color Shows Velocity. Because we already have this checked off, we don't really need to make use of this button, because all the velocities are actually shown on each of these notes.

So as you can see here, the MIDI Editor offers a ton of MIDI-editing features. I personally love the ability to add notes within multiple MIDI and instrument tracks all within this one window. If you write MIDI-based music, I'm sure you'll enjoy using this MIDI Editor.

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This video is part of

Image for Pro Tools 10 Essential Training
Pro Tools 10 Essential Training

108 video lessons · 15670 viewers

David Franz
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 13m 44s
    1. Welcome
      1m 20s
    2. Exploring the different versions of Pro Tools
      3m 22s
    3. Optimizing your computer before installing Pro Tools
      4m 18s
    4. Troubleshooting
      2m 19s
    5. Using the exercise files
      2m 25s
  2. 36m 55s
    1. Installing and authorizing Pro Tools
      1m 49s
    2. Connecting your Pro Tools system
      4m 31s
    3. Powering up and powering down
      58s
    4. Choosing the Playback Engine and Hardware settings
      5m 55s
    5. Optimizing Pro Tools' performance
      6m 26s
    6. Utilizing Automatic Delay Compensation (ADC)
      3m 36s
    7. Setting essential preferences
      2m 35s
    8. Creating a Pro Tools session
      4m 31s
    9. Identifying elements in a session folder
      2m 36s
    10. Creating new tracks
      3m 58s
  3. 42m 5s
    1. Exploring the Edit window
      6m 44s
    2. Exploring the Mix window
      3m 11s
    3. Exploring the Transport and Big Counter windows
      2m 57s
    4. Using the Color palette and window arrangements
      2m 35s
    5. Investigating the menus
      3m 22s
    6. Understanding samples and ticks
      3m 34s
    7. Viewing and manipulating tracks
      4m 31s
    8. Selecting inputs, outputs, and busses
      3m 58s
    9. Selecting an I/O settings file
      4m 12s
    10. Understanding signal paths and gain stages
      3m 46s
    11. Utilizing keyboard shortcuts and Keyboard Focus
      3m 15s
  4. 21m 11s
    1. Using DigiBase and the Workspace browser
      4m 14s
    2. Importing audio
      3m 0s
    3. Importing MIDI
      2m 48s
    4. Importing session data
      5m 34s
    5. Importing tracks from a CD
      2m 51s
    6. Importing video
      2m 44s
  5. 56m 46s
    1. Recording audio
      6m 13s
    2. Playing back audio and Edit window scrolling
      4m 52s
    3. Creating a click track
      5m 24s
    4. Overdubbing and using the record modes
      8m 52s
    5. Recording with playlists and Loop Record
      4m 6s
    6. Punch recording and using the monitoring modes
      4m 14s
    7. Dealing with latency and ADC
      4m 58s
    8. Creating a group
      6m 5s
    9. Adding effects while recording
      5m 16s
    10. Creating a headphone (cue) mix
      4m 29s
    11. Assigning disk allocation
      2m 17s
  6. 1h 28m
    1. Understanding nondestructive editing and region types
      3m 19s
    2. Using the Selector and Grabber tools
      3m 37s
    3. Using the Trim and Scrubber tools
      7m 5s
    4. Using the Zoomer tool and zoom presets
      5m 51s
    5. Using the Pencil tool
      3m 10s
    6. Using the Smart tool
      1m 27s
    7. Understanding the Edit modes
      5m 51s
    8. Arranging clips
      6m 40s
    9. Undoing an edit
      2m 44s
    10. Utilizing fades and crossfades
      9m 41s
    11. Building a comp track using playlists
      5m 17s
    12. Locking and muting clips
      2m 48s
    13. Special Edit window buttons
      7m 15s
    14. Creating an audio loop
      5m 19s
    15. Editing a voiceover
      9m 41s
    16. Using Elastic Time and Elastic Pitch
      9m 12s
  7. 17m 21s
    1. Working with clip groups
      4m 33s
    2. Using time, tempo, meter, key, and chord
      5m 37s
    3. Creating memory locations
      7m 11s
  8. 33m 10s
    1. Setting up MIDI on a Mac
      4m 17s
    2. Setting up MIDI on a PC
      2m 14s
    3. Setting up MIDI in Pro Tools
      2m 44s
    4. Recording MIDI data
      3m 14s
    5. Recording multiple MIDI tracks with one virtual instrument
      2m 17s
    6. Recording options for MIDI
      6m 21s
    7. Using Step Input
      4m 35s
    8. Making a drum loop with MIDI Merge
      3m 36s
    9. Composing with virtual instruments
      3m 52s
  9. 57m 1s
    1. Using the edit tools for editing MIDI data
      10m 0s
    2. Editing MIDI data in the MIDI Editor
      7m 31s
    3. Working with the MIDI Event List
      2m 12s
    4. Editing MIDI data with Event Operations
      8m 33s
    5. Quantizing MIDI tracks
      12m 16s
    6. Creating and using Groove Templates
      5m 35s
    7. Utilizing real-time properties
      5m 50s
    8. Using MIDI Learn
      5m 4s
  10. 17m 30s
    1. Exploring the Score Editor
      5m 49s
    2. Using the Score Editor
      5m 5s
    3. Setting up a score
      4m 48s
    4. Printing and exporting a score
      1m 48s
  11. 25m 39s
    1. Writing and editing automation
      6m 40s
    2. Drawing automation with the Pencil tool
      4m 2s
    3. Editing automation with the Trim and Grabber tools
      2m 58s
    4. Cutting, copying, pasting, and clearing automation
      4m 12s
    5. Turning automation on and off
      3m 52s
    6. Automating plug-ins and virtual instruments
      3m 55s
  12. 1h 49m
    1. Setting up a session for mixing
      8m 50s
    2. Setting up an effects loop
      9m 30s
    3. Working with plug-ins
      4m 33s
    4. Utilizing ADC while mixing
      9m 8s
    5. Applying EQ
      12m 43s
    6. Adding compression and limiting
      14m 25s
    7. Using delay effects
      6m 52s
    8. Applying AudioSuite plug-ins
      6m 24s
    9. Adding reverb to your mix
      6m 50s
    10. Bouncing down a mix
      4m 15s
    11. Making an MP3 for iTunes and SoundCloud
      2m 53s
    12. Setting up a session for mastering
      4m 58s
    13. Mastering a session
      10m 37s
    14. Bouncing down master recordings with Dither and Noise Shaping
      7m 24s
  13. 9m 59s
    1. Importing and displaying video files
      2m 38s
    2. Adding music, foley, ADR, and FX
      4m 29s
    3. Bouncing down video and audio together
      2m 52s
  14. 4m 0s
    1. Archiving an entire session
      4m 0s
  15. 58s
    1. Further recommendations
      58s

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