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Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

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Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Sat May 30, 2020 8:09 pm

Title says it all. I change the swing setting on one midi instrument track's piano roll (checking it's the only one highlighted etc) but the swing value then changes on EVERY single midi track to the same value. What on earth is going on, this isn't meant to happen?
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby DanielBeach » Sat May 30, 2020 8:35 pm

I sometimes have all tracks selected (my brain seems to have muscle memory for CTL-A) by accident.....?
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby desmond » Sat May 30, 2020 8:47 pm

Dr Huge Longjohns wrote:Title says it all. I change the swing setting on one midi instrument track's piano roll (checking it's the only one highlighted etc) but the swing value then changes on EVERY single midi track to the same value. What on earth is going on, this isn't meant to happen?

(Edited with updated behaviour)

The current setting of the swing/strength slider will be whatever you set it to. it's just the amount of quantisation to be applied when you press "Q" to do a hard quantize operation (or when you are manually changing settings for that region).

Otherwise, changing the swing setting is purely changing the amount to be applied when you next quantise. (Or at least, you can see notes moving, but if you select a different region, that region won't be automatically re-quantised unless you start changing parameters again.)

It's convenient to not reset the swing slider when you change tracks, as you'll often want to swing by the same or a similar amount., but you can change it to whatever you want and then Q. I don't really see what the problem is, unless you think that whatever is set here is realtime quantising like the region parameters, which is not the case.

Remember, quantising in the edit windows is not realtime, unlike quantising in the region parameters.

Image

Basically, it's an edit window tool to apply to events, not a per-region/track setting like the region parameters.
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Sun May 31, 2020 10:17 am

Remember, quantising in the edit windows is not realtime, unlike quantising in the region parameters..

OK, cheers. This is probably where my confusion is stemming from. So basically you're saying the slider on the piano roll editor just reflects the last change you made on any track but hasn't actually implemented the change on the track until you specifically re-quantize that track?

I don't really see what the problem is,

Probably the way my brain works but, for me, it's not at all intuitive. If I change a parameter on a track I want to see what that track is set to next time I open it, not see what change I made to a completely different track. Surely it makes more sense for the slider to reflect the last change you made to the track you've got open rather than some other one? What are you supposed to do, write down your quantise settings for every single region on a bit of paper! I can't see any advantage in the way it's set up at the moment; for me the inconvenience of not knowing what I set a track to far outweighs the convenience of a suggested setting for a new one.

Is there anything else in Logic that works like this ie changes the visual representation of a parameter when you change something on another track or region?
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby Sam Spoons » Sun May 31, 2020 10:30 am

I may be misunderstanding but surely the amount of 'swing' needs to apply to all tracks, just as the tempo or time sig* needs to apply to all tracks?

* Polyrhythms excepted ;)
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Sun May 31, 2020 10:53 am

Absolutely not! :o The reason bands playing live sound so distinctive and/or groovesome is that each player has his own time-clock to which he plays, some play lazily behind the beat, some are bang on it, some rush just ahead etc etc. On a song which isn't noticeably 'swung' in a shuffle or jazz sense, adding a bit of swing here and there can transform the groove.

So when I'm trying to create a song that grooves nicely I might use subtle swing on some parts and not on others, especially on drums and percussion parts. And some parts might need a bit more swing than another. It's like trying out different musicians for each instrument, I suppose.
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby desmond » Sun May 31, 2020 11:21 am

Dr Huge Longjohns wrote:So basically you're saying the slider on the piano roll editor just reflects the last change you made on any track but hasn't actually implemented the change on the track until you specifically re-quantize that track?

Yep. It's not a track/region-based thing, it's just the edit window slider. It doesn't change its value if you select different regions, and nor does it quantise anything until you hit Q (or change the sliders etc)

Dr Huge Longjohns wrote:Probably the way my brain works but, for me, it's not at all intuitive.

When people don't see something as intuitive, it usually means they don't understand what is going on (sometimes, because what is going on is more complex than they think).

Dr Huge Longjohns wrote:If I change a parameter on a track I want to see what that track is set to next time I open it, not see what change I made to a completely different track. Surely it makes more sense for the slider to reflect the last change you made to the track you've got open rather than some other one? What are you supposed to do, write down your quantise settings for every single region on a bit of paper! I can't see any advantage in the way it's set up at the moment; for me the inconvenience of not knowing what I set a track to far outweighs the convenience of a suggested setting for a new one.

Yes, you're misunderstanding what this function is/does and how it works.

*Regions* have non-destructive region parameters. You can, for example, select a region, set it's region quantise to 1/16th, and all notes in that region will be non-destructively quantised on playback. You can select a different region, choose a different region quantise, say, 1/8th, and as you select each region, it's parameters will be displayed in the region inspector appropriately.

This is all very intuitive and should handle a lot of quantising use cases, and is completely non-destructive and alterable at all times.

When you get into the editor windows, of which the Piano Roll has it's own quantise options - this is a very different feature to region quantising. It's a permanent, destructive quantise to a selection of notes/events. There is no real-time quantising on playback, it actually alters the events themselves.

Individual events do not "retain a quantise setting", and nor should the "please quantise my event selection to this amount slider" display any previous quantisation attempts.

Ok, so I select a few events, I set my swing to 0 and hard quantise to 1/16s. Then I select my hihat notes, quantise them to 1/16s, then decide I'm going to swing them a little, so with them selected I up the swing slider until it sounds good. Then maybe there are a few little hihat fills that don't sound good quantised to I select only those and quantise them to 1/32 with no swing, and nudge those manually a little to feel right.

Ok. Now, I select one hihat event. In your mind, the slider is not just a "how much swing to apply when I quantise this event selection", it's a "display my current quantise setting for this event" display too. Well, this event might have been altered by many quantise procedures, with all kinds of swing and strength settings. to end up on it's current position. It's current position is in no way indicative of any previous quantisation attempts, nor can you infer a quantisation value from it's position (hey, I nudge events by ticks all the time.)

So, stop thinking of the slider as a display of my events quantisation status. That's not what it is. It's a tool to adjust event timing by applying quantisation, not a display of anything event related.

Dr Huge Longjohns wrote:Is there anything else in Logic that works like this ie changes the visual representation of a parameter when you change something on another track or region?

The slider is not a visual representation of data. It's an "apply by this amount" tool, and yes, Logic has plenty of these.
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby desmond » Sun May 31, 2020 11:23 am

Sam Spoons wrote:I may be misunderstanding but surely the amount of 'swing' needs to apply to all tracks, just as the tempo or time sig* needs to apply to all tracks?

No. I often mix swing values within programmed drum tracks - it's quite nice to have low-strength differently swung hihat/shaker/tambourine parts which give a nice loose feel.

It doesn't have to be a blunt "my whole track has an MPC style 58% per swing" - although you can do that too of course.
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby desmond » Sun May 31, 2020 11:34 am

Put in another way - you select a note, and use the destructive quantise to quantise it to 1/16th 52% swing.

Now nudge that event forward by three ticks.

What do you think the quantise settings should display now? Because it certainly isn't 1/16th 52% swing anymore. Should the sliders say "No quantise?". Well, that wouldn't be true anymore either.

You can't give a display of quantisation for an individual note, because a note's position can be arrived at through many tools.

The quantisation parameters in the piano roll are not a display of event quantisation parameters (which as you can hopefully see, is not that simple), they are tools to modify event timings by certain amounts.
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Sun May 31, 2020 11:40 am

This is all very intuitive and should handle a lot of quantising use cases, and is completely non-destructive and alterable at all times.

When you get into the editor windows, of which the Piano Roll has it's own quantise options - this is a very different feature to region quantising. It's a permanent, destructive quantise to a selection of notes/events. There is no real-time quantising on playback, it actually alters the events themselves.

OK, the fog is beginning to clear now. I had no idea about these differences to the two ways of quantising. I was, as you guessed, assuming the PR worked in the same way as the region inspector quantise functions which I have generally used for quantising.

And I still find the fact that the piano roll uses a completely different way of talking about quantise very confusing. What's the reason for not using the same percentage or A, B, C etc descriptions in the PR?
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby desmond » Sun May 31, 2020 11:55 am

Dr Huge Longjohns wrote:And I still find the fact that the piano roll uses a completely different way of talking about quantise very confusing.


I'm not sure what you mean? What do you mean by "a completely different way of talking about quantise"?

The destructive quantise options in the piano roll are:
- Quantise type (menu of different algorithms, including straight 1/16ths etc, as well as more complex ones).
(This menu is the as in the non-destructive region quantise parameters.)

It has a Quantise Strength amount. So do the region parameters, 0-100% exactly the same.

It has a Quantise Swing amount. So do the region parameters.

It seems to be me the way of talking about quantise is the same.

The only difference is one tool applies non-destructively on region playback, and the tool in the event editor window is designed to help you edit events.

Dr Huge Longjohns wrote:What's the reason for not using the same percentage or A, B, C etc descriptions in the PR?

I don't get you. The types in the menus between the region parameters and the piano roll quantise are the same.

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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Sun May 31, 2020 1:19 pm

In the Logic manual about the inspector q settings it says:

"In the Region inspector, the Q-Swing field is located below the Quantize pop-up menu.

Q-Swing: Alters the position of every second point in the current quantization grid. Values over 50% delay the beats; values under 50% pre-delay (advance) them. The most practical settings are between 50% and 75%, which give a swing feel to strictly quantized (or tightly played) regions."


But as far as I can see in the PR, the %Q slider only moves the notes backwards from 0-100%?
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby desmond » Sun May 31, 2020 1:31 pm

Dr Huge Longjohns wrote:But as far as I can see in the PR, the %Q slider only moves the notes backwards from 0-100%?

Thanks for the clarification to what you were addressing. If you ask me why, I can't tell you, I'm not on the development team.

If you want me to *guess* - the region parameters have been like that for 20 years. The piano roll quantisation is a much more recent thing, and they probably decided to go with 0-100% for both strength and swing to be simpler and more accessible for new users. Especially as the piano roll quantise options are simpler and more limited than the real-time region parameters, which have a lot more options.

Note - when I say destructive vs non-destructive, it's not *quite* the case, but for reasons of simplicity I've framed it like that (I started to go into this earlier, but deleted the paragraph as it wasn't really relevant to the point I was trying to get across). In reality, events *always* retain the original recorded event times, so you can always re-quantise even in the event editors - but, it *acts* like destructive quantising in that you see the events timings change in the event editors. So it's pseudo-destructive, really.

The region parameters are real-time playback parameters that don't directly alter the data in the regions, but modify them on playback.

But back to your original "WTF??" query - you should be good on this now you understand what's going on, yes?
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Sun May 31, 2020 3:49 pm

Yes, that's brilliant Des, thanks! :thumbup:
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Re: Logic: changing swing on one track changes all midi tracks???WTF?

Postby desmond » Sun May 31, 2020 4:21 pm

Great! :thumbup:
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