MIDI Editing in Qtractor

I wanted to edit the track I created for the previous post in order to learn about MIDI editing in Qtractor.

I double-clicked the track clip to open the MIDI editor.

Moving Notes

As expected, I found that notes can be moved by clicking and dragging (up, down, left, or right).

Note Duration

I hovered the mouse pointer over the end of a note; the cursor changed to a double-headed arrow. I could then click and drag left or right to shorten or lengthen the note. I discovered I could affect multiple selected notes by holding Shift or Ctrl while clicking and dragging.

Copy, Cut, and Paste

One or more notes can be selected, copied or cut, and then pasted elsewhere.

There doesn’t appear to be a feature to split a note but I was able to get the same effect by shortening a note’s duration, copying the note, pasting the note immediately after the original note, and adjusting the duration of the pasted note.

Snapping

I found that note positions and durations are snapped to a specified time value (unless snapping is disabled). The default time value is Beat/4 (a sixteenth note). The time value can be changed (or snapping disabled) by using the dropdown menu at the far right of the MIDI editor window or by selecting View > Snap from the MIDI editor window’s menu.

Quantize

I found that MIDI editing functions require one or more notes to be selected. I selected all notes (Edit > Select > All, or Ctrl+A). I then right-clicked in the MIDI editor window and selected Tools > Quantize. With the Time checkbox checked, I set the associated time value to Beat (a quarter note).

I clicked OK and all notes were moved to the nearest beat, which is what I wanted.

Resize (Velocity)

I wanted to set the velocity to 64 for every note. I selected all notes, this time by using the mouse to draw a rectangle that included all notes. I then right-clicked in the MIDI editor window and selected Tools > Resize. I unchecked the Duration checkbox, checked the Value checkbox, set the associated value to 64, and left the Value type set to Flat.

I clicked OK and all notes were set to have a velocity of 64.

I later discovered that velocity can also be set using the Normalize tool.

Resize (Duration)

I wanted to set all selected notes to have a fixed duration of a little less than a quarter note (in Qtractor, a quarter note is normally 960 ticks). I selected the desired notes, right-clicked in the MIDI editor window, and selected Tools > Resize. I checked the Duration checkbox, set the Duration value to 0.0.900 (900 ticks), set the Duration unit to BBT, and unchecked the Value checkbox.

I clicked OK and all selected notes were set to have a duration slightly less than a quarter note.

Muting a Note

There doesn’t appear to be a feature to mute a note but I was able to get the same effect by setting the note’s velocity to 0.

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One thought on “MIDI Editing in Qtractor

  1. Pingback: Getting Started with Qtractor | Making Music with Free Software

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