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  1. David
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. Monday, 25 January 2021
Hello,

Just purchased a Montage 8 (well, actually, it was a Christmas present from a generous wife! :p ). I also had purchased Cubase Pro a few years ago when Cakewalk went through it's changes, but had still been using Cakewalk. Since the Montage integrates better with Cubase, I'm ready to make Cubase my primary DAW, and I updated to Cubase Pro 11 yesterday.

In any case, Bad Mister's video seems to illustrate the steps to connect the Montage with Cubase AI, since AI is included with a Montage purchase. To connect the Montage with Cubase Pro 11, as the interface looks a little different, I thought I should click on Studio->More Options->Midi Device Manager->Install Device. I see many synths/keyboards listed, but couldn't find Montage. I did see Yamaha MO (Yamaha). Is this for the Montage, or do I choose Define New, or am I way off in my thinking?

Also, how would I then connect the Montage to Cubase for audio?

Thanks for any input,

cohenville
Responses (24)
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Based on Reply #17, I was successful in saving a Performance on the Montage, then transferring it into Cubase with Montage Connect. The new Performance I created was to clone the instruments I had chosen for the original Performance that I had not understood I needed to save. I noticed however, that this time around the Soprano Sax part I had used (I believe it was the Mellow Soprano the first time around), does not sound as authentic as before (and this is the case regardless of whether Cubase is involved or not). In other words, previously, the Soprano Sax Part had a relatively convincing, breathy Sax sound - which we all know is difficult to simulate on a keyboard. Now, however, it sounds more artificial. I'm listening with the same headphones (Yamaha PAC HPH-MT7 Monitoring Headphones) and I am certain the sound of the instrument is different. Rebooting the Montage makes no difference.

I haven't changed any sound settings that I'm aware of - I haven't started to experiment with tweaking Parts (layering, adding effects, etc.), although I want to work on that next. So, I'm wondering:

1) Is there a specific method to recapture the original sound of a Part; and
2) Which processing techniques might help in making Soprano Sax - and other Sax sounds on the Montage, for that matter, more authentic?

Thanks.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 21
Bad Mister
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
The new Performance I created was to clone the instruments I had chosen for the original Performance that I had not understood I needed to save. I noticed however, that this time around the Soprano Sax part I had used (I believe it was the Mellow Soprano the first time around), does not sound as authentic as before (and this is the case regardless of whether Cubase is involved or not). In other words, previously, the Soprano Sax Part had a relatively convincing, breathy Sax sound - which we all know is difficult to simulate on a keyboard. Now, however, it sounds more artificial.
The sound you hear initially, should match the sound you hear when playing back the recording (be that recording MIDI or Audio). Not just close, I’m talking, exactly. In theory, you should not be able to distinguish between what you heard when you were playing it versus when you play it back.

It is not clear if you are talking about recording to Cubase or just programming your Performance. But in either case, knowing what you are monitoring and how you assemble your Performance, will be very important.

Sonic differences can occur in several ways:
Monitoring issue: Either you were monitoring yourself improperly during record (a common mistake), or you have isolated Parts to separate audio destinations and are now monitoring them without certain System Effects.

Say you setup to record MIDI data to Cubase. If both pathways are active, that is, Local Control = On and you are echoing back the through a MIDI Track to the Tone Generator, you will hear a double signal. Monitoring like this will give a thicker, swirling type sound — it will sound like a slight chorus effect is being applied — you can understand that this doubling is not being recorded, you are monitoring improperly.

Learn to hear this doubling as an error in monitoring... if you think you like this ‘effect’, then learn how to set it up properly (with an Effect processor assignment, instead of a mistake in monitoring). Remember, as a improper routing situation, it is not being documented/recorded. That is why on playback, when you only hear one of the signal paths — it will sound different from when you originally recorded.

When recording Audio to Cubase, doubling occurs when both the USB Out and the Analog Out are monitored simultaneously— if Direct Monitor is On, the signal goes direct to the Analog Out as normal, but also a digital version goes to the DAW (Cubase) and then Returns to the MONTAGE as audio interface, then to the Analog Out. Double. Choose to Monitor only one during record, because on playback you will hear only the result of one feed.

Alternative
Cubase not involved: you mention something about your Performance being a clone (sorry, I don’t understand what is being said here).

In programming your own Performances, you can do so by “merging” several Performances into one. When doing so there are several things that can change about the selection. When teaching about this concept in audio engineering we talk about how any instrument, alone, sounds one way, but will sound different when placed in an ensemble. It’s a human perception thing...

In the case of the synthesizer, an instrument “Mellow Soprano”, when in a Single Part Performance, has access to 5 Effect processors. Two belong to the instrument sound itself — and should considered apart of the instrument) the other three belong to the over system and recreate the outer environment, the room acoustics.

The two processors that are apart of the instrument sound are called the Insertion Effects. These effects travel with the “Mellow Soprano” Sax sound wherever it goes. When you merge it into a new Performance, it automatically keeps these two processors and the Part Controller Assignments.

The three processors that are not, technically speaking, apart of the instrument are the two System Effects (Reverb, Variation) and the Master Effect. The System Effects work on a SEND/RETURN scenario like you would find on any mixing console — every channel has a Send To these Effect processors, and the Return From these processors gets mixed back to the main stereo flow. Then all signal together goes through the Master Effect (often called “a DJ Effect”... it is putting an effect on a finish product. (When a DJ puts an effect on the signal, it is post (after) everything).

When you move the Mellow Soprano from its Single Part HOME, into another Performance... the Reverb, the Variation and the Master Effect are likely to be different. You can understand this as the Sax joined the band, and is now in a different room together with the band. The acoustics are likely different than when the Sax was at home, now in the rehearsal hall, the acoustics are entirely different.

Part parameters include the (2) Insertion Effects.
Common parameters - there is only one set of Common parameters per Performance. When you “merge” several Parts into the same Performance there can be only one set of room acoustics. Make sense?

You’ll need to give us the details of the Parts you merged to be able to pinpoint what is different.
Because there can be only one set of Common parameters per Performance, all links from the merged Part to the Super Knob will be deactivated. This does not mean they are lost... they are simply deactivated

If you wish to reactivate any of the links to the Common level Assign Knobs and Super Knob, you must review the assignment and reactivate the link. This is necessary because previously the Mellow Soprano was in Part 1 (when at HOME), however, now that it has joined the band, it is likely to be in another Part number. Plus you need to review what may already be assigned to a particular KNOB. There is a maximum of 16 assignments... you must also check to see if you have a Control Assignment available.

Because the upper level programming (like the links to the SuperKnob) is initially stripped off, and may need to be reviewed and reactivated, your newly merged version may sound different in its new HOME.

We don’t have enough information to help you with this specifically. But there are many things that can change when creating your own custom Performances. Understanding what changes is knowable and when you take a close look at the architecture, logical.

If this is your lead instrument - instead of merging it to a different Performance, merge the other instruments into the Mellow Soprano
Instead of the Sax player going to someone’s house, invite the others over to your Sax player’s house (er, HOME).
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 22
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
In short: select the Mellow Sax part in your newly configured performance by tapping on it, or any of the other ways to select it. Set knobs to Tone by tapping the Tone button (highest button on your keyboard, above the knobs) and swivel Cutoff all the way to the right (the first knob). That might have been what you'd previously done to it, via the Super Knob or Assignable Knob One, to make it sound 'breathier".
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 23
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
the Soprano Sax part I had used (I believe it was the Mellow Soprano the first time around), does not sound as authentic as before


This information is not sufficient to determine what is causing the difference in sound. "... as before" does not detail how the soprano sax sound was used before when it sounded fine.

My assumption was "before" the soprano sax was recalled from a factory preset that only had the soprano sound by itself. And "after" the soprano sound was merged into an existing performance. If this is true - then the types of differences that occur in this case are fairly clear. If this is not true, then there's a different path to take.

If true - then the two items BM pointed out are the two reasons why sounds are different when merged. System effects are bound to be different when you "transplant" a sound from its original Performance into a new/different Performance. And also if the sound you are using originally had Part-level or even Performance-level assignable knobs that alter the sound - then these are also going to be "lost" during the transplant. It's the doctor's job to do some reconstructive surgery.

As one method to manage your Frankenstein ...

Sometimes one sound is more altered than another by merging (transplanting). Whenever creating a "Frankenstein" Performance - one where you merge in one or more sounds to an original sound - you always start with the first sound which is unaltered.

Your keyboard instrument seems like on Part 1, Bass on Part 2, and so on. So the keyboard Part is the unaltered one that defines the system effects available for all other transplanted sounds and also has its superknob/assignable knobs all in tact.

If you instead start with the soprano as the 1st Performance - then it will have all of its knobs and system effects in-tact. Then merge in the keyboard/bass/etc. You'll be now possibly creating a different sounding keyboard - but it may not be as noticeable depending on what your ears need to hear.

If this interpretation of "before" and "after" doesn't fit - then there may be some other types of things going on.

Regards,
Jason
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 24
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