For historical reasons, certain musical instruments are traditionally notated in a transposed key rather than the actual key. For example, a normal (Bb) trumpet part is written in the key one whole step higher than the actual concert key, and an Eb alto sax part is written a major sixth higher. Musicians have traditionally learned to read and refer to the notes they play using the proper transposition interval for their instrument.Cakewalk supports these non-concert instrumental keys through use of the Key+ control in the Track Inspector. Simply enter or record the notes into the instrument's track transposed as the musician would expect them, and then set the proper transposition interval in the Key+ control to make it play in the correct key. For example, a Bb trumpet track should have all its notes a whole note higher than concert pitch, and should have Key+ set to -2 to transpose it two chromatic steps back down. Remember, not all trumpets are Bb instruments!Now that the pitches appear the way that the trumpet player needs to see them, the problem is that when you play your project, the MIDI notes in the trumpet track sound a whole step too high.
2. In the Track Inspector, force Cakewalk to play the trumpet track a whole step lower by entering -2 (negative 2) in the Key+ field and pressing ENTER.Now the trumpet part in the Staff view appears in the key of D—Cakewalk automatically adds two sharps to the trumpet track’s key signature—but the track sounds in the key of C because you entered -2 in the Key+ field (you may need to close the Staff view and reopen it to see the new key signature). The Staff view automatically transposes the key signature for each track according to the track's Key+ value. Multiple tracks appear and can be printed as an orchestral score, with the proper different key signatures for each track.Note that this Key+ information is saved in Cakewalk .cwp files, but not in standard MIDI files. If you save a file as a MIDI file, the Key+ transposition will be applied to each note event, so that the file will sound the same, but the Key+ information will be lost. If you're reading in a MIDI file, you can easily set up the non-concert instrument tracks and then save the file as a normal project file. First set the Key+ offset to reflect the non-concert instrument's key signature. Then, use Transpose to compensate for the Key+ offset.
Tip - Searching Documentation
Tip: To search for a specific topic, type your search query in the Search Cakewalk.com field at the top right of this page.
When the search results appear, click which product's documentation you would like to search to filter the search results further.
Note - Using Offline Help
Note: If you prefer to always use offline Help, go to Edit > Preferences > File > Advanced in your Cakewalk software and select Always Use Offline Help.
If you are not connected to the internet, your Cakewalk software will default to showing offline help until an internet connection becomes available.