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Bad Mister need your expertise- Best practice(s) for transferring data from Motif XF to Montage?

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 Fess
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Happy Holidays BM, and everyone else!:) So I want to transfer my songs data, patterns data and samples used (saved to flash memory module) to my Montage so I can finish up the work on the Montage. Could you please give me some insight on how best to accomplish this? Given that the Montage does not have a sequencer like the Motif I doubt there is a way to directly import the data into Montage and have it play back in song recorder mode-if that was possible-it would be fantastic. Anyway, can you offer a method or two to do this? Happy New Year btw!:)

 
Posted : 30/12/2018 11:43 pm
Bad Mister
Posts: 12304
 

You’ll want to SAVE your Motif XF data in an All data file .X3A
From this file the MONTAGE will be be able to load all Voices, Waveforms and Arpeggios.

It does not import any Song or Pattern MIDI data, nor does it copy the MIXING setup. For this you have two options.
OPTION 1: Use Cubase to “Import Motif XF Song”... this will let you capture all the MIDI Track data, and the Motif XF Editor can capture a document containing all your Mixing settings. This will be very helpful in recreating the MIXING setup in the MONTAGE.
OPTION 2: Save each Song as a .mid File. Save each Pattern Section as a separate .mid File.

There is no way to simply import the entire 16 Part MULTI, but you will find everything you need in MONTAGE to recreate your data.

The first option is the quickest and easiest... once Cubase imports the XF Song, you can export it as a .mid File and load it to the MONTAGE. This .mid File can be played by the MONTAGE’s PLAY/REC feature.

Because the Import > Motif XF SONG Function is also able to capture the MIX settings with the Motif XF Editor, you can reconstruct each composition by building the MULTI with MONTAGE sounds. I’ve done this several times. As I repoint each Cubase Track from the XF to the MONTAGE, I either find the original sound I used in the XF or I substitute a new one. The entire process comes together in short order. (I haven’t timed myself, but the finished products in each case have been well worth the effort, to be sure).

If you used any Integrated Samples (Audio Tracks) in your XF creation they will be exported to Cubase and will be found in the MONTAGE as they get loaded with the .X3A File. You can simply create a MONTAGE Part to house those Waveforms. The MIDI note-On data that triggers these audio samples will already be imported... you simply need to line it up with its data.

 
Posted : 31/12/2018 12:53 am
 Fess
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Thanks a lot BM. I'll get it done. Happy New Year!:)

 
Posted : 31/12/2018 2:04 pm
 Fess
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You’ll want to SAVE your Motif XF data in an All data file .X3A
From this file the MONTAGE will be be able to load all Voices, Waveforms and Arpeggios.

Hi BM, will the .X3A file contain all of my user samples as well? I have 2 x 1024 MB flash mem. cards installed in my Motif XF where I have drum/music samples saved for custom kits I put together that I've used in the songs/patterns I want to transfer over to my Montage.

When I saved the .X3A file, I saved the samples in the batch file. I haven't imported it into Montage yet so I don't know what it will look like when I try to view individual samples/MIDI files. Will I see each sample and MIDI file labeled like it was in the Motif XF?

Ultimately what I'm hoping to be able to do is export/import the MIDi files into Cubase and my custom audio samples into Montage (as key-mapped kits, like they are in the Motif XF), then point those MIDI files in Cubase, (imported from Motif XF) to the same sounds in the Montage channel by channel in Single mode-like you described in your response.

Since I won't using Multi mode for this process I'm assuming I will have access to all 16 channels of MIDI in the Montage triggered by Cubase MIDI tracks. Is that correct? For example, channel 1 in my Motif has an organ, channel 2 has a custom key-mapped drum kit, channel 3 strings- and so on with all 16 channels of MIDI being used.

Hypothetically, if I get the 16 MIDI tracks into Cubase from Motif XF Song mode (or any patterns from Pattern mode) I am aiming to trigger the exact same sounds (MIDI and audio samples) in the Montage that I am currently triggering in Motif XF.

I don't mind putting the work in, but will I have to remap all of my custom kit sounds key by key into Montage?

I really want to use Montage to produce the songs I have in Motif XF so I'll do whatever the heck I need to do.

Thanks again for all of your help.:)

 
Posted : 10/01/2019 2:14 am
Jason
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I haven't enough experience with Motif XF and how the flash is managed and content saved - so I cannot address that part specifically. However, when you save an "All" file (with Samples) on the XF - your Motif XF voice(s) will transfer "identical" over to Montage. Meaning if you had a custom drum kit with drum keys programmed to either preset or custom samples (or a mix of both) - all of these settings and samples should land in-tact in Montage without you having to do anything else.

The extra work you need to accomplish should not be on reassembling Voices/Performances. These are all automatically converted (in separate steps, one for Voice - one for Performance). The mixing+song or mixing+pattern modes have you assemble a list of voices. I don't think there's a way to save/transfer the mixing setups. I think some of this was covered in other threads (maybe there's a way). You may need to convert your Motif voices - then recreate the mixing setup by using PART merge to merge multiple converted voices (which are now single-PART Performances in MODX) and assemble the PARTs to match the channel-to-voice ordering of your mixing setup.

Going any deeper than that should not be necessary (like your drum key example).

EDIT:

There are only so many ways to transfer the mix voices off a Motif XF. I believe the options are bulk dump and creating mix templates which are saved to an X6A file. I speculate it's easier to deal with mix templates saved in an X6A file than to deal with bulk dumps. So it would be "nice" if the conversion on Montage for X6A would support converting mix templates into a series of Performances. This would decrease the amount of "post processing" you'd have to do. Full disclosure - I haven't tested this myself by creating mix templates on Motif and seeing that they are absolutely not converted with Montage. Assuming this is not the case, it may be helpful if, in the future, mix templates were converted into Performances. Some things currently simply cannot be supported. Say you have two pattern parts with the same MIDI Receive Channel. This is not a feature supported. It shouldn't make a difference necessarily assuming the MIDI song file compensates. It's something that can be addressed in the conversion process.

For now, there's likely just a few nudging steps you'll need to do to get mixing setups to align with MIDI ("song" ) data.

 
Posted : 10/01/2019 3:04 am
Bad Mister
Posts: 12304
 

Hi BM, will the .X3A file contain all of my user samples as well? I have 2 x 1024 MB flash mem. cards installed in my Motif XF where I have drum/music samples saved for custom kits I put together that I've used in the songs/patterns I want to transfer over to my Montage.

If you save a .X3A File with Samples, the MONTAGE will be able to import all your XF Voices, Waveforms and Arpeggios.
Those sampled Waveforms that were recorded using the Integrated Sampling Sequencer’s “Sample+Note” or “Slice+ Seq” feature will also be imported. Using Cubase’s ability to Import Motif XF SONG data from that same .X3A File, you will be able to reconstruct your XF Song in the MONTAGE.

When I saved the .X3A file, I saved the samples in the batch file. I haven't imported it into Montage yet so I don't know what it will look like when I try to view individual samples/MIDI files. Will I see each sample and MIDI file labeled like it was in the Motif XF?

The .X3A Motif XF ALL data file is all you need. The MONTAGE will make each imported Voice a Single Part Performance. All the Waveforms and Samples will be named and assigned within AWM2 Parts same as in the XF. USER SAMPLE Voices (those made in the Integrated Sampling Sequencer) will have their Waveforms imported as well.

You can view the Waveform List of this converted data by using the Waveform Category Search of the target Bank. Those Waveforms created in sync with the Xf’s Sequencer will appear on the Waveform List but unassigned to a Part. I’ve been able to convert even my most elaborately programmed XF Files to MONTAGE. Although I’ve never pushed the theoretical maximums to the limits.

I don't mind putting the work in, but will I have to remap all of my custom kit sounds key by key into Montage?

The work you will have to put in, fortunately, will not be remapping all of your custom kits, Key by Key... MONTAGE will do all of that because it is a VOICE and Voice data, including any Waveforms and Arps will be faithfully recreated. The work you will actually need to put in is in rebuilding the 16 Part MIXING for each song... which, truth be told, you wind up wanting to do as you have so many new options to play with. But reconstructing the Mix is a good amount of work (but way less than rebuilding a Waveform!!!). I highly recommend you have a “Yamaha Motif XF Editor Stand-alone/VST” File that captures each of your Mixing settings... you will need to recreate your 16-Part Mixing Setup, looking at the Editor is way faster/better than writing anything down... redoing the Mixing includes placing the instruments into Parts, setting volume, pan, effects, EQ, etc.

Issues:
_Any custom Mixing Voices (those stored within a Song/Pattern) should be transferred and stored to the Motif XF User Bank (general population) so that it can be converted with the 512 User Voices.
_Any Motif XF Patterns, should be “chained” and then converted to a linear XF SONG. The Cubase extension that will Import SONG and Mix data from that .X3A All data file, only works to import linear Song data. I just set a chain so each section plays once... then convert that to a SONG so it is included in the data that Cubase can import.

I’ve been there, done this, earned the merit badge.... most all the heavy lifting is handled by the MONTAGE conversion process. If you get stuck, post back. Once you’ve Loaded the Motif XF data into the MONTAGE, you will really begin to appreciate the CATEGORY SEARCH functions... in particular, it’s ability to allow you refine your search to just the data you just loaded. Be it the individual programs, Waveforms or Arps.

Loading the Motif XF data to the USER Bank will allow you to customize the data as you desire, then create your own MONTAGE LIBRARY File — and finally install the data to your instrument’s FLASH ROM Library

 
Posted : 10/01/2019 10:47 am
 Fess
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Thank you both for your responses. Bm, regarding creating chains in Pattern mode on the XF...when those are imported by Cubase are they essentially MIDI files on one MIDI track?. I ask that because while in Patten mode on the XF I can easily try different chain arrangements of arps and recorded loops etc just by pressing button from A-H for instance... Just want to make sure I can cut and paste MIDI data freely on the Cubase MIDI track once it's imported from the .X3A file.

*Speaking about Pattern mode, it's too bad there isn't some Remix plugin for the chain data imported. I like using that function on the XF.

Regarding the importing of data from XF to Cubase. Since I've never done it, I don't know where to look. Do I use the XF editor plugin for that process? I'm, assuming with the Motif XF connected by USB this is all done through.

I guess I should have the XF and Montage within arms reach of each other to do this. I was hoping I could recreate the whole thing in a Cubase session in another room using the Motif, save that Cubase project, then take my elicenser to the next room to open the project within another setup and start lining up MIDI tracks using Montage sounds. Just trying to avoid any heavy lifting if I can since I'm recovering from a torn abdominal muscle.

Anyway, thanks to you guys I now know of a few ways I can accomplish the transfers.

Thanks again!:)

 
Posted : 10/01/2019 2:02 pm
Bad Mister
Posts: 12304
 

Thank you both for your responses. Bm, regarding creating chains in Pattern mode on the XF...when those are imported by Cubase are they essentially MIDI files on one MIDI track?. I ask that because while in Patten mode on the XF I can easily try different chain arrangements of arps and recorded loops etc just by pressing button from A-H for instance... Just want to make sure I can cut and paste MIDI data freely on the Cubase MIDI track once it's imported from the .X3A file.

I create a chain that simply plays one section after the other so that all the data is represented when I convert it to a linear structure, Song. It depends on which version of Cubase you are using as to whether you can reconstruct the data in easily accessible Pattern Sections. Cubase Pro, for example, has an Arranger Track that lets you Section off measures of a linear structure into accessible musical sections which can be recalled in even more ways than the XF Pattern Mode.

*Speaking about Pattern mode, it's too bad there isn't some Remix plugin for the chain data imported. I like using that function on the XF.

Again depending on what version of Cubase you will find more advanced tools for drum track construction. I’ll try to link you to some examples...

Regarding the importing of data from XF to Cubase. Since I've never done it, I don't know where to look. Do I use the XF editor plugin for that process? I'm, assuming with the Motif XF connected by USB this is all done through.

Here is the in depth description of the Cubase Motif XF Song Import feature:
Motif XF SONG Import using the Editor VST

I guess I should have the XF and Montage within arms reach of each other to do this. I was hoping I could recreate the whole thing in a Cubase session in another room using the Motif, save that Cubase project, then take my elicenser to the next room to open the project within another setup and start lining up MIDI tracks using Montage sounds. Just trying to avoid any heavy lifting if I can since I'm recovering from a torn abdominal muscle.

If you have the Editor data you can leave the XF where it is... I understand the logistics side of things. The correct data files is all you’ll need and worst case you can use a USB stick to shuttle over the data

 
Posted : 10/01/2019 4:45 pm
 Fess
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Ok, so using Cubase Import function i was able to import an .X3A file's MIDI data. I got the MIDI of one song and then fiddled with mixer settings until they sounded satisfactory. Not having much luck with the VST editor to be honest. When syncing a song with arps, the arps that play back are rigid (like they're quantized) and lack swing, and there seems to be more bass notes that really mess up the sound. I compare the playback to the Motif and it's a lot different. The MIDI gets imported okay but the editor isn't accurate when it comes to arp data. I soloed the same track on the Motif and it plays back with the right notes and the arp swings like i originally programmed it but when playing back in Cubase (from a synced MIDI transfer using the editor) its way off in terms of notes and arp swing. Not sure what to do here. I spent all day trying to get it right and there doesn't seem to be a way of doing it. By the way, When I attempt to do this using the Montage, will I use Montage Connect to import the mixer data?

 
Posted : 15/01/2019 10:04 pm
 Fess
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Imported another song and the first track with MIDI data was completely out of key. The other 10 tracks were in the right key. What could be causing this?

 
Posted : 15/01/2019 10:51 pm
Jason
Posts: 7918
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I guess check the note and pitch shift on both ends as a start. In the original Motif XF and then also on the converted Montage side. Something like Pattern Mixer mode under [EDIT] then part select 1-? then [F4]->[SF1] can pitch shift each "PART". Song mode has similar settings. I'm not sure how all of these carry over if you have something non-default.

EDIT - I was at the MOXF when I wrote this. Probably doesn't apply (the "F" keys). But when you edit each PART - there's a "TONE" section under mixing parameters where you can offset pitch - so take a look there on the Motif XF as one thing to look at.

As far as your ARP playback - does Montage have the ARP available - and is the ARP armed and ready to go (meaning PART and Master ARP = ON)? And do those settings match Motif for swing, etc. With missing bass notes (or missing notes) it almost sounds like you're hearing the trigger note which is documented in the MIDI file - but not the ARP output which takes in that trigger note and would produce more notes. Just a guess.

 
Posted : 16/01/2019 4:54 am
 Fess
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Hi Jason, I figured out the arp issue... I just had to turn it off in the editor. It's not an exact science but I was able to save various Cubase projects with the editor settings, although I don't know this will work with the Montage considering the Motif editor supports the Motif. I don't think it will communicate with Montage, or even recognize it. I saved each Cubase MIDI track tabling each with the exact sound incl. category and preset #, so I'm half way there. Thanks for the suggestions.

 
Posted : 16/01/2019 6:10 pm
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