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  1. Gabi
  2. Sherlock Holmes The Voice
  3. MONTAGE
  4. Friday, 10 May 2019
Hi, since Cubase is half price right now I am thinking about upgrading from Elements 10 to Pro 10. So I am trying to figure out if I really actually need the Pro features. What are the advantages for the Montage that are really very useful? I know there is a sysex track, that is only in the Pro version, but I don´t really know what I can do with this sysex track. Can I for example edit recorded superknob automation in this track? Or draw in my automation later? Or what else?
Any other mindblowing advantages for the Monatge in Pro?

greetings
Gabi
Responses (24)
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
If you have Elements and not AI - then you've already invested and upgraded from what comes "free" with Montage. Unfortunately, the upgrade option to Pro doesn't see Elements any different than what came free (AI). Although I think the cost to upgrade AI to Elements was a relative drop in the bucket. Neither Elements nor AI has a reduced cost for the upgrade - so you'll not be upgrading likely but purchasing a full version outright. This is the only way you'd see a 50% discount of anything.

As for differences - I usually look here:

https://new.steinberg.net/cubase/compare-editions/

The chart summarizes the differences between the various levels. It'd be nice if there would be some "blurb" about each feature when you hovered over the marketing name for the line. There isn't - so you can guess or look it up elsewhere.

Feature: Pro vs Elements
=========================
MIDI Tracks: unlimited vs 64
Audio Tracks: unlimited vs 48
VST Instrument Tracks: unlimited vs 24
VST Instruments: 8 vs 3
Instrument Sounds: >3000 vs >1000
VST audio effect plugins: 75 vs 43
VST MIDI effect plugins: 18 vs 0
Physical I/O: 256 vs 24
Audiochannel Insert Slots: 16 vs 8
Group channels: 256 vs 16
FX send/return channels: S=8/R=64 vs S=8/R=8
Rack Instruments: 64 vs 24
MIDI plugin insert slots/sends: 4 vs 0

and so on (you can do this) ...

Some of this stuff doesn't involve Montage at all but you may want it. For me, under "Sequencing" is "Tempo Detection Panel" - some of these tempo features would help me when using the DAW to auto-recover the tempo and use it to easily time stretch using a tempo track and save a new/adjusted (scaled) tempo track to the audio track. That's one example from my own interest of Pro.

You see on most fronts that limit you (or not) for direct use with MODX that the Artist level is very capable. Unlike the Pro level - the Artist level gives you both a 50% discount on the upgrade (to Artist from AI or Elements) and the Elements level gives you a $25 discount (vs AI) so it rewards you for your previous investment.

You'll have to sort through the Artist vs. Pro differences to see if there's anything in the chart that stands out as a dealbreaker. For me - it MAY be this tempo stuff. I have various tools for this. Even Cubase AI can be used although you have to do things the "hard way" vs. the nice helpers in Pro. Ultimately, my time is probably worth the additional cost. I'm personally grappling with which version I should land on and Artist goes in and out of favor.
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 1
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Hi, since Cubase is half price right now I am thinking about upgrading from Elements 10 to Pro 10. So I am trying to figure out if I really actually need the Pro features. What are the advantages for the Montage that are really very useful?
These will differ from user to user. If you find yourself wondering what advantage Pro has over the entry level AI/LE/Elements, you probably are not quite ready. But the elegance of operation and the features in Pro will have different appeal based on what else you do. If vocal recording is a thing for you, living without “Vari Audio” becomes impossible... this is the pitch correction software built-into Cubase Pro.... you can correct pitch, create vocal harmonies as easily as dragging and dropping notes. Multiple levels of undo (I cannot stress enough, when working with any vocal processing, pitch correction tools, experimenting is important, the way Undo works makes Vari Audio superior to plug-ins that do pitch correction, in my opinion.

The “Chord Track” (which I believe is available in AI) allows, especially when you record with Arpeggios, the software to suggest chord changes based on your ideas. In fact, the Chord Track feature used with the chord intelligence of eight Arpeggiators, I’m finding can become a massively useful tool when composing songs. The Chord Track is also crazy useful in turning your vocal into harmonies... (Vari Audio + Chord Track becomes essential).... you can even add/remove vibrato from sung notes, it will create harmony parts based on your chords... too much fun!!! ...it can even “make suggestions” - (that blew me away)... you played a bunch of tracks, you can have Pro change all the musical tracks so it shifts the notes to the chord quality — say at Measure 36 you want to change the tense of the chord you played from Fm7b5 to F9, you can have it adjust all the tracks to accommodate the change... including the chords you played, the lead line, the vocals, wow, so cool.

The “Arrange Track” lets you develop a workflow where you create a Multi Part Performance using MONTAGE Parts... transfer your basic groove to Cubase Pro, Setup several different combinations of instruments and grooves... record your ideas... the Arrange Track lets you quickly grab the “best of” sections (regions of measures) and create Play Order commands. Turn long jams into tight arrangements quickly, easily... with the draw pen.

“Groove Agent” arguably one of the best drum track creation tools, ever is built in...

The event “List Editor”... I find that I use this often. Some prefer the piano roll Editor, but often seeing the Event List is helpful.

I know there is a sysex track, that is only in the Pro version, but I don´t really know what I can do with this sysex track. Can I for example edit recorded superknob automation in this track?
I could just answer yes here, because you can... but that’s only something you ask about doing when you don’t understand the impact of the Super Knob and the data trail it creates.

The Super Knob itself, in theory, could be changing 1 or more parameter destinations (as many as 128 Destinations simultaneously). You don’t wind up “fixing” things at the DAW end, by editing the Super Knob movement (although, you can)... you more likely wind up editing the synth (so much more musical)... Example: _ if the Super Knob is panning, changing volume level, and closing the filter (simultaneously)... if you don’t like the speed of the pan movement, you’ll actually want to edit the synth’s (MONTAGE) response to the data, rather than the changing the DAW data itself.

What having the Sysex on a separate Track does for you that is so very useful... is you can independently have the Sysex Track *active* along with any individual Part’s Track. Say you have the Super Knob changing multiple parameters across multiple Parts. It’s opening the filter on your Keyboard Sound, and morphing your strings from small ensemble to large ensemble, etc., etc., ...simultaneously. Say you want to hear just the Strings... if you solo just the String Track, you’ll hear just the Strings but no movement of the Super Knob... by having the Super Knob Sysex on a separate Track, you can isolate the Strings + the Sysex Track... allowing you to hear the just Strings as they morph from small to large ensemble. Invaluable. And when you solo the Keyboard sound + the Super Knob you’ll be able to hear what movement is caused to the Keyboard sound... it’s very elegant. And once you have it, you’re spoiled.

Without this Sysex Track, in order to ‘hear’ the Super Knob playback, you’d need to keep Track 1 always active — because typically all the Super Knob and Scene change messages are merged with Channel 1 Data. (so it’s always Strings + whatever is on Track 1 + the Super Knob movement).

You’ll really appreciate the workflow when you are transmitting on multiple MIDI Channels, simultaneously. Each Part goes to its own Track (without the routine of recording to one track set to “Any”, then using DISSOLVE PART by channel to separate the data).... everything goes nice and neatly to its own Track automatically and the Super Knob and Scene events appear on that separate Sysex Track.... ah, heavenly. (This will spoil you right away)! Oh yeah, SCENEs, having the Scene commands on the Sysex Track means you can hear any Play FX (timing, swing Quantize, or other offsets you are applying) when soloing a Part. By soloing both the Sysex Track and the Part’s MIDI Track you can hear how the Scene changes affect that Part isolated from the rest of the Tracks!!! Invaluable when truly using the Motion Control Engine.

“External Instrument” feature: Advanced VSTi audio routing... allowing you to use multiple instances of your MONTAGE. When recording MIDI if you wish to use more than 16 MONTAGE Parts in a MIDI session, only Cubase Pro lets you setup the External Instrument routing scenario where you can utilize the external synth hardware in the same manner you do plug-in VSTi synths... multiple instances (by using the Freeze function) you render temporary audio tracks, you get to reallocate your hardware for 16 more Parts... you can open a second, a third, a fourth MONTAGE. Each having 16 Part multi-timbral capability. The advantage here is that you have all your MIDI tracks so you can make changes — invaluable on large projects. If ever you wished you had a second or third MONTAGE, “External Instrument” routing is the way to go!

This routing scenario allows you to process your MONTAGE Parts with plug-Ins (not possible otherwise when the synth is external)... since Audio is returned to Cubase via a virtual Audio Lane, you are free to process its audio same as you would a VSTi soft synth. You can use Freeze, Export Audio Mixdown and other features usually reserved for plug-in synths!

Or draw in my automation later? Or what else?
Any other mindblowing advantages for the Monatge in Pro?
Elegance of operation. A car can get you from point A to point B. And that’s cool, you really feel alright about everything while on the trip. But when you are taking a long trip cross country, and you get that luxury car, you get from point A to point B, but now you’ve got the good seats that don’t make you stick to the upholstery, you’ve got air conditioning, great shock absorbers, a smooth elegant ride. You wind up challenging yourself to do more because you have more tools in the arsenal.

Hope that helps. If all you do is Record, Playback, you probably don’t need Pro... but if/when your ready to expand... the Pro version is like having a musical partner... you can “ask it’ll for assistance (the first time it offers you a suggestion for a possible chord change and it’s one that makes you smile, you’ll never regret upgrading to Pro. It depends on where you’re at... when you’re ready, you’ll know...

Visit YouTube (Steinberg Channel) and explore Cubase Pro... there’s so much more that Pro does....
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 2
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Neither Elements nor AI has a reduced cost for the upgrade - so you'll not be upgrading likely but purchasing a full version outright.

The upgrade from any of Cubase Elements, LE (4 or higher), AI, Essential, Studio, SX, SL or Sequel is $225 vs $280 for the full version.

The Crossgrade deal is even better at $170 from any of Ableton Live Standard / Suite, Logic Pro, Cakewalk Sonar Platinum / Professional, Digital Performer, FL Studio Signature / Producer, Pro Tools / Pro Tools HD, Reason (from Version 6), Studio One Professional.
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 3
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Thank you, I´ll probably upgrade since it´s a real deal right now. I think the upgrade from Elements is also 50% right now. It is showing me 224.- instead of 449.-. Full version is 279,50.- instead of 559.-
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 4
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
$225 wasn't shown as having a discount like the rest (with original pricing crossed out). When I look at archive.org for historical pricing on this upgrade - it does look like $450 is the normal upgrade price, so it is 50% off like the rest. This is based on GC's listing for Cubase 9 Elements/AI to Cubase 9 Pro pricing during a non-discounted time.

$225 needs the e-license USB stick so total is $253 (download only) vs. $290 (w/box). Considering the upgrade IS discounted - then that changes my analysis for what what to do (for me). It's upgrade for the $253 (upgrade+usb key) or get the box (edit: CDs not included in box) for a $37 tax. Probably (edit: not) worth $37, for me. (edit: ... since the box set doesn't come with CDs/media).

Lots of ways to end up with a good deal here. The outright-purchase is competitive with various upgrade paths. Crossgrade is a different story and I don't have any of those competitor DAWs at the release levels required. I did look into buying one of the other DAWs and cross-grading where I would gain some other DAW to use. This may make sense if a second DAW has value for you. I'm not enough of a DAW user to justify getting too many of these things. Arguably Pro is overkill. But it's one of those influenced-by-sale kind of deals at the moment.
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 5
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Point of Order: Pricing and promotions differ in different parts of the world... please check locally... do not depend on anything you read here.

It is however the 30th Anniversary of Cubase no matter where in the world you live.
And don’t ever let a little money limit how much FUN you have!
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 6
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
As an update - I did find I qualified for crossgrade, so I went for that deal. Steinberg online doesn't show an option for a "boxed" version of the crossgrade - but outside retailers do - which saves a few pennies as the USB key is also part of the discount ($10 adder vs. $28). Not a deal breaker either way since the $18 isn't significant. I believe crossgrade is on back-order everywhere so I have to wait for Steinberg to print out some more license keys and also spend some time with the verification process for crossgrade. Pretty happy about the eventual arrival of that luxury car for the non-luxury price.

And a "correction" to an earlier inference: the boxed version doesn't come with CDs/media. According to others who have received the full Pro 10 boxed version - they receive the USB key in the box and a license paper. No paper manuals or CDs/DVDs.
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 7
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
well, I just downloaded a test version of Pro 10 to check it out. so how do I get the sysex track to record anything? it is set to all midi inputs, montage 1, all channels, record, and doesn´t record anything.
Attachments (1)
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 8
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
ok, got it, found this

https://www.yamahasynth.com/montage-category/montage-and-cubase-pro-9-workflow

thank you! it finally recorded something :-)

but: is there a lesson somewhere about how to edit this sysex track? I looked at the list-editor and understand absolutely nothing. how can I draw in my own movements? or correct the sysex track? if even possible?
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 9
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I was about to respond but looks like you got it figured out. I was going to throw out asking how you had that Sysex filter set (since you can filter out sysex as a config option - which would be detrimental to recording any sysex).

I haven't played with this feature - so I don't know. Seems like you can hand edit sysex messages if you go through these hoops:

https://steinberg.help/cubase_pro_artist/v9/en/cubase_nuendo/topics/midi_editors/midi_editors_midi_sysex_editor_r.html

But that's sort of one-by-one.

If I was to draw my own movements, I'd probably just record a new sysex track and cut/paste - replacing the old one. And digging up an old message - the same general notion was made here:

https://yamahasynth.com/ask-a-question/super-knob-and-daw-recordings-issue
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 10
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I kind of was hoping I could just draw a simple automation line. and not only for the superknob, also for the assignable knobs...
besides that, a lot of the really needed Cubase Pro features are available in my other DAW, which btw cost less than Cubase Elements and is 6 years old. It has vario audio for the vocals, you can apply effects to events not just tracks, you can lock tracks, convert stereo to mono, it has a groove agent and a great guitar amp and so on, and big plus you can use 32bit vsts. I recorded 2 CDs with it and was never missing any features. It just didn´t sync with Monatge, big problem, but in the meantime I figured it out... I might just save the money and use the old DAW for all the missing features in Cubase Elements... But with Cubase Elements not even capable of exporting mono so you can use those bass, guitar and vocal tracks in another DAW...it´s really...oh well....not great.
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 11
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
With MONTAGE - Motion Control Synthesis Engine - editing your controller movement is done in the MONTAGE. You’ll begin to connect the dots as you begin to work more with learning to program your own Performances.

The Super Knob could be moving many parameters simultaneously... (as many as 128 parameters) but to explain this let’s just use a simpler example... say the Super Knob is fading out 7 Part Volumes, while fading in Part 8, while changing the Reverb Send on Part 9, and panning Part 10 from its original position on the left to another position in the stereo field on the right side.

Now say you want to change how Part 10 is panning... you’d rather it reach its position on the right side, before Part 1-7 fade completely out.
You would not edit this in your DAW. You would edit this in the MONTAGE.

You would go to Part 10’s “Mod/Control” > “Control Assign” screen, and work with its Curve, Polarity, Ratio, and Parameter 1 (Shaper)...so that Part 10’s movement behaves as you wish while the Part’s do their changes to your single gesture of moving the Super Knob.

You could do this while playing back your Sysex Track so you can adjust the “motion” of Part 10’s Pan while the other Parts do their thing.

So in short, you’re looking in the wrong place to edit the data. Remember it is called “Super” because it is macro controller. One movement gesture can apply different changes to any of the 16 Parts of your Performance. Any of the 16 Parts of your Performance (repeated for emphasis).

Scenes as well, can effect any of the 16 Parts of your Performance. A Scene change can apply to one or more, and as many as 16 Parts simultaneously. If in a Scene change from Scene 2 to Scene 3, you decide not to Mute Part 9 (because you’ve changed your mind) again the Edit would be done in the MONTAGE, not in your DAW. You would recall Scene 3, from the HOME screen touch “Scene”, undo the Mute command in Scene 3.

Once you have edited the application of controller movement so that it pans Part 10 from left to right more rapidly in comparison to how the Parts 1-7 are fading out, Part 8 fading in, and changing the RevSend on Part 9.... simply playback the Sysex you already recorded to hear how it works in context of the data you’ve recorded.

You are changing how Part 10 responds to the currently recorded Super Knob data.

If you have question (or misconceptions) about using Cubase Elements or Cubase Pro, please use your MySteinberg Account and/or the Steinberg.net forums to learn about how you do the things you say you can’t do (don’t be silly, you do not know the program and most of what you say above is simply not the case).
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 12
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
hi Bad Mister, yes, but I simply want to change the movement of the knobs, not anything they do. I find it hard to move a series of knobs (assign knobs and superknob) while playing to get them perfect for a recording and while still developing the song. Sometimes I cut out a part later because the song is too long. Then all my recorded knob movements are cut off, the knobs will jump at the cut and all need to be redone, which of course is not much fun when it was already sounding good,
would be a dream if one could simply redraw the curve with the pen tool at the cut to smoothen things out, like drawing automation curves for vst instruments.

I guess, in my case, there´s no way around recording all the movements of all knobs in overdub after the song is finished. And that can be done in elements.
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 13
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Each Part Assign Knob will output a CC Number when turned *directly* (hands on the actual Knob) These can easily be redrawn with your pencil (draw) tool in any of the Cubase versions. That’s easy.

Hint: Don’t link it to the Super Knob unless you wish to move it as part of a macro control situation. Try to separate the recording engineer (Mixing) functions from those that purely musician oriented functions.

As you get more adept at programming your MONTAGE these differences will be more clear. Early on it is normal to want to put everything on the Super Knob... as you experience values jumping and the like (as you describe) you’ll begin to discover better ways to work and accomplish your goals.

Don’t panic, never give up, never surrender...
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 14
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Each Part Assign Knob will output a CC Number when turned *directly* (hands on the actual Knob) These can easily be redrawn with your pencil (draw) tool in any of the Cubase versions. That’s easy.


they can? well, didn´t even know that... I´ll try to find out how... can´t say it´s even easy to simply draw a volume automation in Cubase. nothing is easy nor intuitive, unfortunately..no luck with anything without looking thru 30 drop down menues and 50 icons.....but eventually after watching 10 videos on youtube I might understand...
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 15
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Lots of ways to slice that pie. Here's one.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HxnDIuQiWzc
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 16
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Lots of ways to slice that pie. Here's one.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HxnDIuQiWzc


thank you for the video!

holy cow, that is complicated..."extract automation", "show used"...I guess I´m gonna have to watch this a few times...baby steps here...
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 17
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
As Jason said, there are lots of ways to slice that pie. Cubase Pro is a very mature program used professionally by top film scorers, musicians and studios everywhere. There are both simple and detailed methods to work. You can design your own workflow.... example, say your doing a real-time MONTAGE “knob performance” where you are interacting with Parts via their AssignKnobs... directly using a Part’s Assign Knob will generate cc messages on the Parts MIDI Channel. You could setup to just record the cc movement on a separate track or view them on the Automation Lane. You can copy Automation from one track and apply it to another.

The thing is, their is no one way to work. So the thing to do is Start. Find out what is most comfortable for you. There is a Steinberg Channel on YouTube... some routines are advanced. I recommend starting at the shallow end of the pool and wade out into the deeper waters. But there is no real harm to just diving in.

But when you say “nothing is easy or intuitive”, I disagree. The fact that there are so many pull downs should reassure you that this is not a toy - if you ever use a program like Excel or PhotoShop both can do simple easy edits, but both are incredibly deep and can do “professional” editing. Nothing is necessarily easy or intuitive when its not your full time profession. But if you learn the basic stuff first, the more complicated routine actually DO start to seem very intuitive.

As long as you realize that “seeming intuitive” is just a matter of perspective and experience... dialing a rotary phone was considered easy, intuitive, but if you never grew up with rotary phones, it is far from easy and intuitive (saw some recent videos that make this point). It’s perspective.
...and your perspective is likely to change as you work more with the program and the synth.

You may discover, that “editing the synth” as I suggested earlier, is a more efficient way. That may not seem easy and intuitive right now, but I believe your view on it will change, if and when you start to customize controllers on your own Performances.

Take your time.
Recognize that your confusion will clear (as you have those ‘aha’ moments).
There is no shortcut to experience... your second attempt will, in all likelihood, be easier than the first. And as you do things a third and fourth time, they actually do seem easier. That’s called developing a workflow. If there were only one way to work everyone would work the same way... the good news here is, you can develop your own workflow — the software can help you be creative.
  1. one week ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 18
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
It's not rocket science or even that many steps. Very quickly you can get to the below picture I've captured from my Montage using Cubase AI 9.5

https://i.ibb.co/S5nmd4g/Montage-Showing-CC-As-Automation-Tracks.png

Here's the rundown - from Cubase:

1) Open up new empty project (create empty)
2) Add a MIDI track
3) Make sure Sysex isn't filtered (File->Preferences and MIDI filters) if you care about the Sysex part. You may not end up wanting to deal with Sysex.
4) Start recording (Cubase transport controls at the bottom to left of what I've labeled as "Cursor Position" - the classic record dot.
5) I generated this data by following this order (first, made sure [ASSIGN] button was lit and PART 1 selected):
5a) Spun Assign Knob 1 full counter clockwise, then full clockwise and back and forth 3 times until ending on full counter-clockwise
5b) Spun Assign Knob 2 in the same manner as 5a
...
5h) ... and so on through Assign Knob 8
5i) Spun superknob in the same manner as 5a
5j) Pressed scene buttons 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 then back down 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 (creating that step "triangle" type pattern)
5k) Pressed [PERFORMANCE] (HOME) to select no PART so COMMON Assignable knobs were active and spun common Assign Knob 1, then 2, ... 8
6) Pressed stop (the square) in the Cubase transport controls to stop recording. All of the events were documented in the MIDI track with no automation tracks shown.
7) Create the automation tracks by:
7a) Click on the MIDI track (shown as MIDI 01) to select it
7b) Cubase "MIDI" menu heading then -> "Functions > Extract MIDI Automation" menu item This is a menu heading like File, Edit, Project, Audio ...
8) If automation not shown like picture, right-click on "MIDI 01" (track name) and pick "Show Used Automation (Selected Tracks)"
9) To show sysex - at the bottom of the screen should be tabs "MixConsole, Editor, Chord Pads". Click the "Editor" tab then in the lower-left of this window is a plus (+) and to the right of that looks like a piece of paper. Click on the paper icon, then pick "Show Used Controllers". The "System Ex" (SysEx) controller should automatically be displayed. Since I didn't hit any notes - that's all that should be selected. I reduced the vertical area the piano roll takes so that Sysex information shows all bytes from F0 ... F7. Some general adjustments to other windows may need to be made to see this fully.

That's not many steps or menus to deal with.
  1. 6 days ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 19
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
thank you for the great instructions. I managed to see the superknob, but my assignable knobs that I turned are nowhere to be found.... see screenshot... why is this all so damn difficult?
Attachments (1)
  1. 4 days ago
  2. MONTAGE
  3. # 20
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