[Ardour-Dev] let's talk about MIDI regions

Tim Mayberry mojofunk at gmail.com
Mon Mar 6 07:01:47 PST 2017

On Mon, Mar 6, 2017 at 9:03 AM, Ed Ward <edwsaintesprit at hotmail.com> wrote:

> Hi,
> I (respectfully !) disagree with using a separate context for MIDI editing
> for numerous reasons :
> - it disrupts the workflow and decontextualizes the editing (i.e. how to
> align with an audio segment ?)
I would agree that In-place editing is a good method in many instances but
there are some cases where a dedicated MIDI Editor window is appropriate.
There are other methods of editing MIDI data that may not be ideal in the
context of the Editor, we currently only really support the equivalent of a
key editor and the percussive note mode supports some features of a "Drum"
style editor but there could also be a score editor, list/tracker

Overall I would say that the In-place editing is starting to work a lot
better in recent releases and there are still improvements being made.

If there was going to be some other entirely different kind of MIDI Track
and editing it should probably be implemented as separately as possible and
in parallel to the existing system IMO until there is some consensus that
it is superior.

> - the space has to be found in Ardour's window, replacing something
> (obviously) probably useful
A Separate context could refer to a separate window and not compete for
space in the Editor window, although some DAW's can place the editor in a
separate pane in the Editor itself (that is often also used for other

> As is, the midi system is a sequencer that can turn into an editor at the
> click of a button, which is particularly powerfull. I agree there are some
> oddities, but a disruptive modification would (imho, again) simply dumb
> down the system to achieve an uncertain result, based on what's done in
> other editors.
> I think the main oddity is the constant switch between the editor and
> sequencer modes with the edit tool. Maybe that could be solved as:
If you are constantly switching perhaps you do need a separate MIDI editing

> - clicking on an empty zone of the canvas creates a region
With which tool/mode are you suggesting this occurs? As the Draw mode/tool
does this already.

> - double clicking on a region allows to edit it (instead of showing the
> region properties)
This is already possible with the Editor -> "Double click zooms to
selection" preference enabled. Then Shift+Z to toggle/revert zoom state. It
does not change tool/mode though atm.

> - clicking anywhere outside the region (be it on the same track or not)
> switches back to grab mode.
I'd be surprised if switching tools automatically ends up working well.

> This workflow is close to what's used in e.g. graphic design programs
> (vector or raster), see text in Inkscape as an exemple. It would retain
> what we love in Ardour (linked regions) but make inputung MIDI feel more
> natural.
> As a side note, maybe each region in a track could have a different color
> if they are not linked, so that we could immediately see which regions are
> linked and which are not. Or if it's too much color, maybe a floating
> "chain" icon in the top left near the name of the region, that could be
> clicked to unlink it ?
There are a number of reports regarding this issue in the tracker. I'm sure
similar functionality will get implemented eventually.

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