Recording in Step-Time

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Recording in Step-Time

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If you have good keyboard skills, you can record directly from your keyboard with one or two hands at the full tempo of the song.

Alternatively, you can use your music keyboard to enter notes via the Step-Time Recording Method, playing one note or chord at a time. Click the Step-Time Recording button. Choose the note duration you want to add. Then just point the mouse to the location where you want the note or chord to be added, and play it on your music keyboard.

With the Step-Time Recording Method, you can enter notes at your own pace without regard to rhythms. The rhythms of the notes that you enter in step-time will be determined by where you point the mouse before you play the notes on the keyboard.

Comparison of Real-Time and Step-Time Recording Methods


Real-Time Recording

Step-Time Recording

Keyboard skill required

Intermediate or advanced keyboard skill required.

Only basic keyboard skill required.

Speed of note entry

Fast note entry, at song tempo, or whatever is comfortable.

Slower note entry at your own pace, without regard to rhythm.

Switching back and forth between the music keyboard, the mouse, and computer keyboard

You do not have to leave the music keyboard until the recording "take" is completed.

Sometimes you have to go back to the mouse or computer keyboard to choose a new duration, or choose a new note entry location. But you can often rely on automatic advancing of the note entry location.

Control over expressiveness of note playback

Your notes will be played back with exactly the same loudness and timings as you originally recorded them.

Your notes will also be played back with exactly the same loudness as you originally recorded. But, the notes will be played back exactly at their as-notated locations. The as-performed durations will be determined by the Note Duration Adjustment Table, which you can customize.

Further, you can combine the Step-Time Recording method with the Sequential Note Entry method. This way, do you not have to choose note duration values. Just move the mouse to the position where you want the next note or chord to be entered, and play it at your keyboard. The duration of the previous note or chord will end where you enter the next note or chord. For sequences of notes with the same duration, you do not even have to leave your keyboard: just play them one after another, at your own pace.

The Step-Time Recording method offers an easy way to enter notes without requiring a high level of music keyboard skill. You can enter the notes at your own pace without regard to rhythm. As you add notes with the Step-Time Recording method, you can include expression by playing the notes with different degrees of loudness. Composer will play back the notes with the same individual loudness.

The Step-Time Recording method has the disadvantage, however, that you cannot finely record the timing of the notes. Composer will play back the notes exactly at the locations where you added them. The as-performed duration of the notes played back will not be literally the full notated duration; the as-performed duration of the notes will be determined by Composer's Note Duration Adjustment Table, which you can customize. Even so, with the Step-Time Recording method you have relatively little control over the as-performed duration of the note, as well as its attack.

If you use the Step-Time Recording Method, and you do want the playback to include subtle timings for notes, then you can edit them while viewing the Piano Roll Notation for the notes, as described in Editing As-Performed Attack Location and Duration.