Using Other Software with Sonar5 producer

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Using Other Software with Sonar5 producer

Postby TommyLee_Vocal » Thu Jan 25, 2007 7:06 pm

I want to start recording and mixing from my house. I have the Sonar5 producer edition, but there seems to be alot of things missing from it when reading recording and mixing books. I hear people talking alot about 'Pro Tools', 'Reason', 'Pro Audio', etc.. Are these softwares to be used with Sonar, or are they to be used by them selves? If they are to be used together, what would be the best softwares to use along with Sonar5 producer? One of the problems I have is when I use the 'Cakewalk TTS' to freeze a midi I wrote, it doesn't have the same sounds associated with my 'Yamaha PSR-740' midi & XG midi files. It brings up the same bank and number, but not always the same instrument and sound. This is why I'm looking to see if there's other software I can use with the Sonar5. :?
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Re: Using Other Software with Sonar5 producer

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Postby HDB » Fri Jan 26, 2007 11:07 am

You shouldn't need any other software. Sonar should do most of it.

As for the patch problem, what I always do is to start a MIDI file on the second measure. If you don't have a blank measure at the start of your MIDI file, insert one.

Then, on one of the tracks, at the very beginning, I insert a GM, GS, or XG Sysex Reset bank to reset whatever module I may be using, and I set it to "Auto Send". In your case, with the Yamaha, you'll do an XG Reset Sysex. This clears and resets anything that may be left over from a previous file, or even from the end of the song. If you have inserted a patch change on a track in a tune, then it's possible that when you start the file over, the track will play what the instrument was after the patch change, instead of what it's supposed to start out with. Same with any level or effects settings. If you inserted or drew in volume (controller 7) or pan (controller 10) data at the end of the song, it's poosible that when you restart the song, it's still responding to the last value of those controllers. Some MIDI files don't have patch change messages at the beginning of the song. So it's possible that when you load a new song, it's still basically stuck at the last known values in your MIDI module. Which brings us to....

After the time that the Sysex Reset message was inserted, and before the second measure, where the notes start to play, I always take the time to insert patch change and volume, pan, reverb, chorus, etc. messages for each track. You can do all this in the "Event List" view.

Doing all this assures that the module is reset at the start to clear out any lingering data, and that every track will be set to the proper instrument, and with the parameters you want. You have just taken complete control of your module, and there should be no surprises.

Pro Tools is more audio oriented, but Sonar should be able to do a lot of what Pro Tools will do. Sonar was born a MIDI baby (Cakewalk), and over the years has grwon into a fine integrated MIDI/Digital Audio tool. If you are doing MIDI at all, and you want to add audio, you already have the right software.

Add some effects plug-ins and maybe some good virtual instruments, and there's nothing easier to use than Sonar. I tried Cubase and didn't like it's MIDI implementation, although the audio was good. I haven't tried Pro Tools, but if I was doing only audio, I might have considered giving it a try.

In Sonar, the "Event List Edit" and "Piano Roll" may become your best friend, when you learn how to use them. Get a chart that shows what the Controller messages are, i.e., Volume=7, Pan=10, Reverb=91, Chorus=93, etc., and learn what each of your modules will respond to. That will make it easier to go into the Event List" and insert any changes you want.

Hope this helped,

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