The new MIDI Note Actions introduced in Studio One 4.5 offer intriguing creative possibilities.
In May, PreSonus released version 4.5 of Studio One, a major update that includes over 70 new features and enhancements, and is entirely free to all existing owners of version 4. In this workshop, I'm going to take a closer look at the new MIDI functions that adorn the redesigned Action menu in the piano-roll editor.
We'll kick off with Apply Scale, which seems like a simple enough function. It takes the scale that you can define over on the left of the piano roll, and applies it to selected notes. What strikes me as strange is that, until now, this scale hasn't really had anything other than a visual function. You could select the key and type of scale, whereupon little blue markers would appear on the piano roll to show you which notes are in that scale. Useful, I guess, but until now, there have never been any pitch quantisation options to pull the notes into that scale. The Apply Scale action does precisely that: it nudges the selected notes to the nearest note in the chosen scale and mode, allowing you to try out all sorts of different scales and modes on your MIDI parts. If you want to know what your track would sound like in C# rather than E, or in mixolydian or minor pentatonic, well, now you can.
The only slight annoyance is that the Apply Scale action should really be a button next to the scale selector because, at the moment, every time you change the scale you then have to re–open the menu and click Apply Scale again. Maybe you...