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Controlling playback ► Controlling live MIDI playback—MIDI echo

When you play your MIDI keyboard or controller, the sound that SONAR produces is determined by what hardware or software synth SONAR sends the incoming MIDI data to after SONAR receives the data. This is called MIDI echo. By default, SONAR sends the data to the MIDI output or software synth listed in the Output field of the current track. The current track is the one whose titlebar has the lighter color—press the up and down arrows on your computer keyboard and watch each track turn lighter in succession as you change different tracks into the current track (you can also click any of a track’s controls to make it current).
However, you can echo MIDI data to much more than just the current track, or turn echoing off on the current track if you want. With a single keyboard or controller, you can echo MIDI data to as many MIDI tracks as you want, meaning that you can simultaneously play as many hardware and software synths as you can hook up to your MIDI interface or run on your computer. You can also have multiple performers on different controllers sending MIDI data to either the same synth or multiple synths. Each SONAR track allows you to select what MIDI input ports and channels the track will respond to. The Output field of the track determines what instrument will sound when the track receives the data. Each track’s Input Echo button determines whether the track echoes MIDI data.
Each MIDI track has an Input Echo button, which controls whether the track will echo MIDI data or not. The button has three states: On , Auto , and Off . When the button is on, the track echoes MIDI data. In Auto mode, the track echoes MIDI data because the track is the current track. When the button is off, the track does not echo any data, even if it is the current track. The Off position on a current MIDI track is only available if you disable the Always Echo Current MIDI Track option in Edit > Preferences > MIDI - Playback and Recording. The Auto position becomes unavailable with this setting.
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Click a track’s Input Echo button so that it is on.
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Click a track to make the track the current track (if the Always Echo Current MIDI Track option in Edit > Preferences > MIDI - Playback and Recording is enabled). In this situation (which is the default), if the track’s Input Echo button is not on, the button appears as to indicate that this track echoes data because it is the current track.
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If the Always Echo Current MIDI Track option in Edit > Preferences > MIDI - Playback and Recording is disabled, make a track the current track, and click the track’s Input Echo button .
If you want a track to respond to more than one port or channel, you must create a preset input configuration. If you create some favorite configurations of MIDI input options, not only will they be stored with the project you created them in, but you can save each one as a preset to load in any MIDI track in any project you want. Clicking the drop-down arrow in a track’s Input field displays the Inputs drop-down menu, which has the Manage Presets choice that allows you to create and store your favorite combinations of MIDI input choices.
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Since this is SONAR’s default behavior, simply use the UP ARROW or DOWN ARROW keys on your computer keyboard to choose the current track (the current track is highlighted), and use the Track Inspector or Console view to choose the synth you want to play by using the track’s Output, Bank, Patch, and Channel fields. With the default behavior, all MIDI input from all ports and channels is merged and sent through the current track. Notice that the track’s Input field says Omni.
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If you’ve disabled the default behavior (see next procedure), you must make sure that the current track’s Input Echo button is lit up (on) before you can play the synth that the track is patched to.
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If you want to turn off the automatic MIDI echoing of the current track, disable the Always Echo Current MIDI Track in Edit > Preferences > MIDI - Playback and Recording. If you then turn off the current track’s Input Echo button and play your keyboard, SONAR will not produce sound.
1.
Choose a synth for each track that you want to play by using each track’s Output, Channel, Bank, and Patch fields in the Track Inspector or Console view.
2.
In the Input field of each track that you want to play, click the drop-down arrow and choose the MIDI input port and channel that you want the track to respond to from the following options:
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None. This option actually sets the Input field to Omni. With this setting the track will respond to any MIDI input coming in on any port (MIDI interface input driver) on any channel.
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(name of MIDI input driver) > MIDI Omni. Choosing this option causes the track to respond to any MIDI channel coming from the named MIDI interface input driver.
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(name of MIDI input driver) > MIDI ch 1-16. Choosing this option causes the track to respond ONLY to whatever MIDI channel you choose coming from the named MIDI interface input driver.
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Preset. If you’ve created any preset collections of input ports and channels, you can select one here.
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Manage Presets. If you want to create or edit any preset collections of input ports and channels, you can select this option (see following procedure).
3.
Make sure that the Input Echo button on each track that you want to play is turned on.
1.
In the Input field of a track that you want to select inputs for, click the drop-down arrow and choose Manage Presets from the drop-down menu.
The MIDI Input Presets dialog box appears.
2.
In the Input Port column, find the input port that you want to use for this track (if you only use a single-port MIDI interface, you’ll only see one choice).
Now, when you choose inputs for other tracks, you can choose the preset you saved by clicking the Presets option in the track’s Input drop-down menu. If you want to edit a preset, select it in the top window of the MIDI Input Presets dialog box, edit it, and click the Disk icon. If you want to delete a preset, select it in the same dialog box and click the X button to delete it.
1.
For performer number 1, click the Input drop-down menu(s) of the track(s) you want that performer to play, and choose the port and MIDI channel that performer 1’s keyboard is sending data to SONAR on.
3.
If there is any track that you want more than one performer to play, create a preset of the input ports and channels that you want that track to respond to (see previous procedure).
4.
Make sure the Input Echo button is on for each track you want to play.
Click the Input Echo On/Off All Tracks button in the Control Bar’s Mix module.
Figure 57. The Mix module.

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