ModWheel position save: RE+old devices VS new (Europa/Monotone..)

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turn2on
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Post 10 Feb 2021

viewtopic.php?p=541994#p541994
User there ask about one problem:

Why my RE not save current MW position in project.
We all know - MW is not a property - just a performance property, Midi CC source. And its logical that at start of loading project, MW set to 0%. Because its controller.

In the same way working all RE (Antidote as example) and all old Reason instruments (like Subtractor / Thor / Maelstrom / Humana..)

And questions:
1. Why new Reason devices (Europa / Grain / Monotone..) - save WM position in the song?
2. How to do it?

All this make some misunderstand between REs / new / old Reason devices..
Question is interesting..
In one situation - we know saving project without Automations, later loading project (default MW = 0%).
In new devices - we save any position of WM.

Bad experience for new users of last RS devices, that coming first time to RackExtensions and old devices world in new projects.

Easy solution: Automation recording for MW.
Not real hard task to remember, what devices in what way work with WM. But.. :?:

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buddard
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Post 11 Feb 2021

In motherboard_def.lua, where the modwheel property is defined:

Code: Select all

modWheel = jbox.performance_modwheel {
	persistence = "song",
},

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turn2on
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Post 11 Feb 2021

Cool! Thank you. :thumbs_up:
Question "How" now resolved.

Bigger problem for users with VSTs. VST can support MW position save. But VST-device shell in Reason not support it at all. May be at one day RS update all devices to MW-song saving.

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nickb523
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Post 11 Feb 2021

Saving the MW position is weird. It's a analogous to having the pitch wheel save 3/4 of the way through the range. It's a performance controller that is intended to temporarily offset the assigned parameters and it's default setting is 0% - It's not supposed to be used to edit the patch. IMHO the automation "work around" is actually the correct way to deal with it.

Also, some devices don't display pitch or mod wheels graphically but they still have a function. If the mod wheel saved with the song on those devices it wouldn't make any sense at all.

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turn2on
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Post 11 Feb 2021

nickb523 wrote:
11 Feb 2021
Saving the MW position is weird.
But RS use this MW saving in new R10 devices (not all)
For me hard to understand "why?". No more standard for rack instrument loading in project. Yes, really, now this work like a PB loaded at 3/4 (not 0). This is sound weird. MW is just a controller, that must be 0 from the start every time.

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joeyluck
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Post 11 Feb 2021

turn2on wrote:
11 Feb 2021
nickb523 wrote:
11 Feb 2021
Saving the MW position is weird.
But RS use this MW saving in new R10 devices (not all)
For me hard to understand "why?". No more standard for rack instrument loading in project. Yes, really, now this work like a PB loaded at 3/4 (not 0). This is sound weird. MW is just a controller, that must be 0 from the start every time.
I don't know if it's necessarily weird either way. I'm not really sure my opinion on it though because several good points are made.

If I place the mod wheel on my physical synth at 100%, turn it off, go to bed, wake up in the morning, turn the synth on, will the mod wheel be reset to 0%? No, it will remain at 100%. In the same sense, saving a Reason project should be like saving a studio in its current state.

Of course, a pitch wheel not remaining at center might be weird because we are accustomed to those have a spring that returns it to center. Nevermind how we try to save it (without automation), it's going to jump back to center anyways.

Nick makes a good point about plugins that don't have a mod wheel on the interface. I think in those cases it makes more sense if the mod wheel position is not remembered. But it can at least be justified if a mod wheel does exist on a plugin that its position is stored in a project, like it is in a studio. Having a mod wheel save with a patch would be weirder.

This could be a question for RS as consistency is what is important IMO.

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esselfortium
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Post 11 Feb 2021

Saving the mod wheel position is useful for combinator programming.

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turn2on
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Post 11 Feb 2021

But Combinator reset MW of the combined devices and not save MW position too.
This can be a pain, if user was been not accurate and touch MW at GUI or controller and forgot about this. When document is saved, at next time user need time to find this error.

Does is good solution to remember, last RE from RS - can save MW position. But if many developers start to use it ?
As minimum, I'm from user side, prefer to know visual attention that Instrument have MW save option as:
- icon about device can remember MW (like icons of the signal routing at fx-units)
- special colour MW border if after loading, device w/o automations, set MW to non-zero position...

Attention (in any kind) for users that MW of Instrument is saved in project - can be a user friendly option.
Idea for Reason future update or not enough interest in this?
Last edited by turn2on on 11 Feb 2021, edited 1 time in total.

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nickb523
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Post 11 Feb 2021

joeyluck wrote:
11 Feb 2021

If I place the mod wheel on my physical synth at 100%, turn it off, go to bed, wake up in the morning, turn the synth on, will the mod wheel be reset to 0%? No, it will remain at 100%. In the same sense, saving a Reason project should be like saving a studio in its current state.
This is where it gets weird for me.

On a physical analog synth the mod wheel position is indeed always where you left it last, but what if someone nudges it when it's off? (which with the wheels is super likely) - It'll be at the correct setting for the position but the patch wont be how you left it.

In software you could have been working on various projects with the same keyboard so the wheel is always all over the place. If the wheel saves at 80% in project A and then 25% in project B then you are always looking at position inconsistencies. To me it's much more sensible to reset to zero just as it would on a patch change (given that it isn't intended to be an editing parameter).

I'm really not sure why anyone would want the last setting behaviour. Surely it would be better to just edit the patch wheel assignment ranges so your desired 75% is 0? (or if you cant be bothered then just automate it?) :?

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buddard
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Post 11 Feb 2021

turn2on wrote:
11 Feb 2021
But Combinator reset MW of the combined devices and not save MW position too.
This can be a pain, if user was been not accurate and touch MW at GUI or controller and forgot about this. When document is saved, at next time user need time to find this error.

Does is good solution to remember, last RE from RS - can save MW position. But if developers start to use it?
As minimum, I'm from user side, prefer to know visually variants:
- icon that device remember MW (like icons of the routing at fx-units)
- special colour MW border if after loading, device w/o automations, set MW to non-zero position...

Attention (in any kind) for users that MW of Instrument is saved in project - can be a user friendly option.
Idea for Reason future update?
I'm not so sure that it's big enough of a deal to warrant a GUI change?
I think most people use MW as a temporary setting, i e they tend to return it to 0, especially if they're using a physical controller.
And if the MW setting becomes significant for the song you usually automate it anyway since it's a performance controller that just modulates other settings in the instrument.

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turn2on
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Post 11 Feb 2021

Now I just interesting to listen RS position.
Why instruments can save values of the performance controllers. For what?
And if there real tasks and needs, how to recognise this type instruments from traditional 0% MW at project opening?

I'm personally many times set MW back in work to 0 at my controllers, synths in real life. But sometimes move hand and set it to 1-3%.. not 0. This situation affects to the result into project. Just one move.

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joeyluck
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Post 11 Feb 2021

nickb523 wrote:
11 Feb 2021
joeyluck wrote:
11 Feb 2021

If I place the mod wheel on my physical synth at 100%, turn it off, go to bed, wake up in the morning, turn the synth on, will the mod wheel be reset to 0%? No, it will remain at 100%. In the same sense, saving a Reason project should be like saving a studio in its current state.
This is where it gets weird for me.

On a physical analog synth the mod wheel position is indeed always where you left it last, but what if someone nudges it when it's off? (which with the wheels is super likely) - It'll be at the correct setting for the position but the patch wont be how you left it.

In software you could have been working on various projects with the same keyboard so the wheel is always all over the place. If the wheel saves at 80% in project A and then 25% in project B then you are always looking at position inconsistencies. To me it's much more sensible to reset to zero just as it would on a patch change (given that it isn't intended to be an editing parameter).

I'm really not sure why anyone would want the last setting behaviour. Surely it would be better to just edit the patch wheel assignment ranges so your desired 75% is 0? (or if you cant be bothered then just automate it?) :?
Well I imagine many people set it on the on the device itself, they see it set and staying in place as they work within a project for a bit without the sound changing, they save it, and then when they reopen it, something sounds off because a wheel is not as they left it.

People don't use mod wheels in the old traditional sense anymore; where it used to always be for simple assignments either just vibrato/pitch modulation or cutoff. Now people are assigning mod wheels in place of macro knobs where the mod wheel does a vast number of things. For many, having the mod wheel on a device reset to 0% is like having every macro on the Combinator reset to default when you reopen a project.

Further, as mentioned, there are devices in Reason that save the mod wheel position and all VSTs save the mod wheel position within the plugin itself. So it's perfectly reasonable to understand why someone would expect it in other devices.

I guess I would lean more towards the project saving the mod wheel positions? But more so, I think there should be consistency one way or the other. I'm guessing it's not as easy to change the behavior of how VST mod wheels save.

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turn2on
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Post 11 Feb 2021

Of course better to have one main solution for all instruments / combi / vst. Save or Not.
May be as additional variant in global prefence that user can select once for personal needs..
But situation when we have devices that work in various ways is strange.

I'm not try to create the wave of negative or misunderstanding at all. Only trying to understand why we have today devices in one eco-system that work in different ways.

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joeyluck
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Post 11 Feb 2021

turn2on wrote:
11 Feb 2021
Of course better to have one main solution for all instruments / combi / vst. Save or Not.
May be as additional variant in global prefence that user can select once for personal needs..
But situation when we have devices that work in various ways is strange.
Yeah I think an option would be key.

In lieu of that, I don't know if it would be clever if having a mod wheel remember its position if dialed in via mouse, but returning to 0% if it had been adjusted via MIDI. Maybe that would just create more confusion? Lol

Or maybe when a mod wheel is dialed in via mouse, it automatically creates an automation lane and wherever you set it via mouse, that is setting the static value.

In terms of Rack devices, the easiest solution does seem to be RS removing the behavior from the few devices that have it. I haven't tested all of the REs I have, but the ones I did test returned to 0% when I reopened a project. Of course, VST behavior is a different thing.

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joeyluck
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Post 11 Feb 2021

turn2on wrote:
11 Feb 2021
I'm not try to create the wave of negative or misunderstanding at all. Only trying to understand why we have today devices in one eco-system that work in different ways.
I think it's a great question and conversation. It would be different if all devices already behaved one way or the other, but there is an inconsistency which only confuses things more.

If someone mostly only uses Europa, they are accustomed to the mod wheel position saving. Or if they mostly use Subtractor, they are used to the mod wheel position not saving. Neither of them is wrong in their expectations.

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joeyluck
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Post 11 Feb 2021

I'll add that setting a mod wheel position is not something I do (I use automation), but the behavior of it saving with a project was what I thought all devices did...

More curious is the fact that this behavior has existed in several devices for maybe over 3 years (and not existed in others) and I don't remember seeing any reports about it or ever noticing the inconsistency myself.

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nickb523
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Post 11 Feb 2021

joeyluck wrote:
11 Feb 2021

People don't use mod wheels in the old traditional sense anymore; where it used to always be for simple assignments either just vibrato/pitch modulation or cutoff. Now people are assigning mod wheels in place of macro knobs where the mod wheel does a vast number of things. For many, having the mod wheel on a device reset to 0% is like having every macro on the Combinator reset to default when you reopen a project.
Big macros on the mod wheel isn't a new thing by any stretch of the imagination. What is new is people expecting the wheel to retain it's current setting on a per song basis without automation. I'm pretty sure the issue here is that less experienced users and non keyboard players are using the wheel as an editing parameter which isn't it's intended use, this in turn has led to some developers trying to accommodate that way of working.

Best solution would probably be to have it as a setting in the host preferences. Then everyone is happy.

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joeyluck
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Post 11 Feb 2021

nickb523 wrote:
11 Feb 2021
joeyluck wrote:
11 Feb 2021

People don't use mod wheels in the old traditional sense anymore; where it used to always be for simple assignments either just vibrato/pitch modulation or cutoff. Now people are assigning mod wheels in place of macro knobs where the mod wheel does a vast number of things. For many, having the mod wheel on a device reset to 0% is like having every macro on the Combinator reset to default when you reopen a project.
Big macros on the mod wheel isn't a new thing by any stretch of the imagination. What is new is people expecting the wheel to retain it's current setting on a per song basis without automation. I'm pretty sure the issue here is that less experienced users and non keyboard players are using the wheel as an editing parameter which isn't it's intended use, this in turn has led to some developers trying to accommodate that way of working.

Best solution would probably be to have it as a setting in the host preferences. Then everyone is happy.
I guess something else unique to Reason is the presence of pitch and mod wheels on most instruments. When they aren't there, users ask for them. Looking at my large VST collection, very few of them incorporate the pitch and mod wheels on the device. I think perhaps seeing it on the GUI is also something that can mislead a user into thinking it should retain its setting?

Another RE I just noticed that retains its mod "wheel" setting is The Legend. Perhaps seeing it as a slider makes people feel it should behave differently? But it's still the same thing.

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nickb523
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Post 11 Feb 2021

joeyluck wrote:
11 Feb 2021

I guess something else unique to Reason is the presence of pitch and mod wheels on most instruments. When they aren't there, users ask for them. Looking at my large VST collection, very few of them incorporate the pitch and mod wheels on the device. I think perhaps seeing it on the GUI is also something that can mislead a user into thinking it should retain its setting?

Another RE I just noticed that retains its mod "wheel" setting is The Legend. Perhaps seeing it as a slider makes people feel it should behave differently? But it's still the same thing.
Interesting. Getting deeper down the rabbit hole here.

On The Legend I did subconsciously expect that slider to behave as editing parameter (and save as such) simply because of how it's graphically represented. Given that Antidote doesn't save the wheel state I wonder if Synapse planned that?

And yeah, the inclusion of pitch and mod wheel graphics has always been a bit odd seeing as in the real world only the keyboard versions would have them.

I think you are on to something there!

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