Part 2 of the Transport Bar tutorial series includes all of the features not previously mentioned in Part 1, for the exception of the Freeze dialog. The Freeze dialog is quite big so we’ll dedicate an entire article to it. Complete your understanding of the Transport Bar by reading the following article.
BPM Selector, Time Signature, Counting Selector
The next section of the Transport Bar shows the “BPM Selector”. You can use it to determine and set the speed of the playback. It is expressed in beats per minute. You can change the value by dragging it up and down with your mouse. What’s more, you can type the desired value. “Counting Selector,” is located right under the “BPM Selector”. However, the value here determines its length before the sequence begins to play.
Next, there is a “Time Signature” button. It opens a new dialogue that allows you to set up a time signature for the project.
Snap, Loop, Metronome, Count, Follow and Beat Selector
The following section mainly incorporates checkboxes except for the “Beat Selector” feature.
The first feature from this section is “Snap,” which tells the SoundBridge: DAW to round all edits and note/automation/loop marker placements to the nearest increment determined by the “Beat Selector”. Next, the “Loop” function will loop the contents between the loop markers until interrupted. The “Metronome” function will provide you with the click for every beat in the musical time signature you setup, and since music production usually follows a fixed grid line, the snap will help you get those MIDI, automation and audio units snap in line with the grid.
The “Follow” function will make the SoundBridge: DAW follow your play-head if it moves out of the view so you can always see the part of the view that is currently playing. Finally, the “Count In” function will play metronome clicks for 1 or 2 bars before the recording starts. This will help you get to the beat when recording a live performance. The only section that is not a checkbox is the “Beat Selector” feature. The “Snap” and “Beat Selector” are there to set the measure for the snap function, so that all elements on the timeline get snapped to the musical grid of the song. So the smaller the value in the “Beat Selector,” the more precise your “Snap” would be.
The next section incorporates a row of select tools in the upper section and buttons for opening and closing different parts of the overall SoundBridge: DAW interface. Besides that, this section contains “Undo” and “Redo” buttons as well.
The first four buttons in the upper row will change the functionality of your mouse cursor. If you select “Draw” you can draw new blocks, MIDI notes, automation points, controller information or stretch points for audio editing. The same functionality is provided with the beat detection sensitivity. This will make your cursor automatically attached to transients near audio events. By double-clicking the “Draw” or “Cut” tool, the icon will change its color and consequently enter into a mentioned mode.
Next, in this upper row, we have a “Mute” tool for muting the individual box of audio, MIDI or automation rather than the entire track. Lastly, the “Question” mark button is an integrated tutorial. It can help you with any SoundBridge: DAW functionality.
With the buttons from the lower row, you can open and close the “File Browser,” “Sequencer,” “Edit Window,” “Mixer” and “Insert Rack’. To close these off, “Undo” and “Redo” buttons divide them from the next section of shortcut buttons.
Split, Merge, Freeze, Adjust Length, Quantize and Duplicate
The final section of the Transport Bar is on the far right, and it contains several functions. “Split,” “Merge,” “Freeze”, “Adjust,” “Quantize” and “Duplicate” are there to make your work easier and menu free as much as possible. Below we will cover all these functions except for “Freeze” since it offers many options and deserves more explanation.
With the “Split” button you can split audio, MIDI or automation blocks by the play-head. Unlike the “Cut” tool, every block that the play-head vertically passes through will be divided. Next, the “Merge” unifies selected blocks in the single audio, MIDI, or automation track. This is a handy feature when you are making arrangements. The “Adjust” rounds the duration of the selected MIDI notes to the nearest increment determined by the “Beat Selector” to the right of snap. Moving forward, there is a “Quantize” button which rounds the position of the selected MIDI notes to the nearest increment determined by the “Beat Selector” to the right of snap. Finally, the “Duplicate” pastes a copy or selected MIDI notes immediately to the right and selects the newly created material. This feature will also work on tracks or plugin modules.
By clicking on the “Freeze” button, we are entering into a new dialogue. However, we will explain this feature in detail in one of the next tutorials.