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Cubase Pro: Key Commander

Steinberg Cubase Pro Tips & Techniques
By John Walden

The Key Editor is packed with MIDI editing features but the trick to a faster workflow is training yourself to access them as efficiently as possible.The Key Editor is packed with MIDI editing features but the trick to a faster workflow is training yourself to access them as efficiently as possible.

With some DIY Smart Controls for Cubase's Key Editor, you could become a MIDI-editing ninja.

Cubase Pro 10's VariAudio Smart Controls bring all the main VariAudio functions within easy reach when you hover the cursor over a pitch segment. It saves you time, and makes you less likely to lose your musical focus. Seeing the concept applied so brilliantly in VariAudio made me hanker after a similar 'smart toolset' for the MIDI Key Editor. When editing MIDI data here, repetitive tasks include: entering and selecting notes, changing note positions or lengths, transposing notes and muting or deleting notes. The potential for streamlining things is obvious, so — in the absence of VariAudio-style Smart Controls here — just how close to hand can we bring the tools and settings required to perform these sorts of tasks?

Tool Utility Belt

The most frequently used MIDI editing tools (eg. Draw, Erase, Trim) are available in the Tool Buttons Palette of the Key Editor's toolbar. This is easy to access, but going back and forth between this Palette (to select each tool) and the notes you wish to edit means a lot of 'mouse travel', particularly if you're working in a floating Key Editor, perhaps expanded to give you more screen space in which to work (rather than the compact Lower Zone).

The Key Editor already has a more immediate option...

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Published October 2019