Using a BCR2000 as a channel strip in Reaper - almost there!

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blinddrew
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Using a BCR2000 as a channel strip in Reaper - almost there!

Hi folks, new to the world of hardware control, BC Manager and all things MIDI really but after a couple of weekends trawling through various forums I've almost got what I'm looking for.

I saw this article in Sound On Sound last year and, having been able to pick up a BCR2000 quite cheap, I thought I'd give it a go in Reaper.

Thanks to Mark's work with BC Manager I've pretty much got it functioning as I want with an EQ and compressor on each channel, and various other functions mapped where I want them to be.

The only thing that isn't quite working as I would like is that when stepping between channels the encoders are remembering the value from the last active channel rather than changing to the value of the new channel.

For example:

Encoder 1 is set to work as the compressor ratio on all channels. I select channel 1 and set the ratio at 2:1.

I then select channel 2 and set the ratio to 10:1.

I decide that the ratio on channel 1 isn't quite right, so I select channel 1, but when I turn the encoder it jumps straight to 10:1 and then moves from there, rather than remembering that channel 1 was a 2:1 and moving from there.

Hope that makes sense?

Anyway, I was hoping that maybe there was a way to change this so that it remembered the value from the active channel not the last used one?

Thanks in advance for any help.

Cheers

Drew

Knob Twiddler
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Reaper does not have midifeedback so it is not possible. It is possible with other DAW's that have midi feedback implemented like Cubase or Ableton or Sonar or Studio One. I use Reaper myself and miss this feature very hard.

Mark van den Berg
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Damn, Knob Twiddler, you beat me to it by several seconds, haha...

Mark van den Berg
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I hardly know Reaper (only tried a demo version a few years ago), which is why there are a few things I don't understand:

You write that "encoder 1 is set to work as the compressor ratio on all channels".
Does this mean that you have defined only one BCR preset, dealing with all Reaper channels?

And if so, how does stepping between channels work: do you do this in Reaper (i.e. via your computer) or via a pair of buttons on the BCR (i.e. in your preset)?
In either case, if you can't make Reaper send the correct values to the BCR upon channel selection, the only alternative is to dedicate particular encoders in particular BCR presets to particular Reaper parameters in particular channels: the BCR remembers the last-selected value of each button/encoder in each of the 32 presets. But of course this can only work if Reaper allows you to address specific channels.

Hope this helps,
Mark.

blinddrew
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Wow, thanks for the quick replies folks.

Firstly I've realised that I never added the link in the first post, here we go: http://www.soundonsound.com/techniques/strip-it-good

Thanks Knob Twiddler - no midifeedback = no play huh? Poo. I did wonder last night if it was just that I hadn't correctly set up the send information but I guess not.

Mark,

Yep, I've set up one BCR preset that has controls for an EQ and compressor on the channels and a few generic controls for the master and transport. I select channels by using the top bank of encoders and the encoder groups. So a press of encoder one (group 1) selects channel one, encoder two selects channel two etc right up to encoder eight (group 4) selecting channel 32. I've deliberately set the rotary part of the encoders to the same action for each group.

From what you're saying, I think you're suggesting that if I ignore that approach and set each BCR preset to be a specific channel then I might get what I'm after because the BCR will remember the settings and not need the midi feedback? (Obviously this wouldn't work if I changed something using the mouse not an encoder)

If so, is there an easy way to copy an entire present from one to another? I was looking for this in the manual last night - but it was getting late and I might have missed it!

Thanks

blinddrew
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Ignore that last question, I have that now.

blinddrew
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Hmmm, that wasn't as straightforward as I hoped.

I tried copying the channel select options from the encoder to the preset <> buttons so that < on channel one would select ch32 and > would select ch 2 and so on but it's obviously not that simple.

The preset buttons don't seem to send any midi data even though I've got that assinged in BC Manager?

Any suggestions?

blinddrew
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No, wait, I've got this!

blinddrew
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All sorted now, cheers!

Mark van den Berg
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Great!

In answer to your question concerning preset switching I was going to mention the LEARN and Snapshot features:
Upon preset selection, the LEARN feature allows you to output any MIDI data, and the Snapshot feature outputs all the current encoder and button values of the newly selected preset. (See BC MIDI Implementation.pdf sections 13.2 and 13.3.)
But maybe you've already discovered all this...

Mark.

blinddrew
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Yes indeed :)

Knob Twiddler
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Interresting topic. I would like to add that there is an exception in Reaper where midifeedback works.

YOu can add different devices that are known by reaper, it's a selected list, the bcr is not there, the bcf is.

It is called "control surfaces" it's in the preferences. If you spitt this all out, you will discover that some parameters do have the feedback. I discovered it by connecting my BCR and loaded the BCF control surface for it. It's not intended to, and not realy working but some knobs will move thing on the screen and if you move with the mouse, they move on the BCR. But I could never found a list of the parameters that do that. It are things like channel volume,pan and maybe EQ. There is also a guy on the reaperforums that made something like a BCR surface control, but in the end it is too much effort and setup for the poor results.

For my part, I come from Cubase, I loved to make presets for third party synths and drummachines, all vst, all layed out for every knob or button on the synth, sometimes spread over different presets, if the vst was multitimbral for example. I still can in Reaper, but without midifeedback. Miss it alot, but to be honest, I finaly make some music now :D 

If you would like to share your preset, I would be interested.

 

blinddrew
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Hi KT,

That's interesting to know about the BCF functionality. I'll have a little play around and see what happens.

I'm actually just about to do some tweaks to my preset in the next week or so, so I'll share it when I've done that. I assume I can add it as a file on here somewhere...

Mark van den Berg
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Knob Twiddler
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I'm actually just about to do some tweaks to my preset in the next week or so, so I'll share it when I've done that. I assume I can add it as a file on here somewhere...

Please do. I am looking forward to that! 

blinddrew
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I added a new folder called DAWs and put it in there with a bit of explanation. I've added a screenshot here so you can see how it works in practice: https://photos.google.com/search/_tra_/photo/AF1QipMg_r_1R-JsvwYfWPTaTrZ...

 

Mark van den Berg
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Thanks very much for the upload, and indeed for kick-starting the DAWs folder!

I've taken the liberty of raising the DAWs folder's level.

 

Knob Twiddler
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Thanx blinddrew, I will give it a try thisweek, very curious to see your Reaper work.

There is a problem with the link for the screenshot, can you post it again?

blinddrew
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Ah, try this link instead? https://goo.gl/photos/pDE4nj5jtjC2nSMW9

Knob Twiddler
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I loaded the file into the BCR but I don't exactly understand how it is working.

Are there only the 8 parameters per Channel, the ones you see in your image?

Because when I create a track and load the ReaEQ it does't do a thing except for the transportbuttons on the first from 3 lower rows.

I suppose the correct track envelopes are necessary before it works.

Are you willing to share your Reaper template blinddrew? That will make it much easier I guess.

A friend of me made a small program years ago, to name the BCR presets so you remember them.

It looks like this:

[IMG]http://i383.photobucket.com/albums/oo274/nr1killabee/BCRTool%20SEMV_zps9...

You can grab it here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B_GTGfqCJj_eOHZ1d3o3VjdIdDA/view?usp=sh...

 

blinddrew
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blinddrew
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Ah yes, I guess it only makes sense with that. I'm also using a focusrite compressor plug in so you'd need to find something appropriate. 

I'll see if I can find somewhere to upload the DAW template.

blinddrew
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