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FAQ - Midi File Save

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What can I do if I need some of the parts to play chords as well?

If you want one of the parts to play polyphonic music with non twelve equal chords, you must assign several channels to that part. For instance if a part plays four part chords, it must be given at least four channels to play on - preferably more.

However even with polyphonic parts, if the music is reasonably straightforward in terms of the number of instruments, i.e. a small band or chamber music rather than orchestral, you can probably set up the channels for the parts so that each part has its own set of channels to use all to itself.

To take an example, if the music is for keyboard + solo instrument, you could set the solo instrument to play on channel 1 and the keyboard to use all the other channels. Or if you want to avoid the note off pitch shifts, but make sure each instrument is in a separate section of the midi file, you could set the solo instrument to play on say the first three channels, and leave the rest for the keyboard.

Then when you open the midi file you could set up the notation software or whatever you use to display it to merge all the channels for a single part into one display - e.g. in notation software you may be able to overlap the staffs for the first three channels (or whatever it is you need to do).

This approach can make the midi file created much easier to read in other programs.

Is there any way around this - I want to be able to work with midi files without this restriction?

Yes - two ways around it. One approach is to use midi tuning tables. But only a few synths and soft synths recognise those.

The other approach though, and normally the best way to compose with midi files using Tune Smithy is to work with unretuned midi source files rather than with the files output from Tune Smithy.

Okay, so how can I work with unretuned midi source files?

The idea here is that instead of saving a midi file in FTS then editing it in another program, you work the other way. Work with an unretuned midi file in your other program - and whenever you want to listen to it, you play it through FTS. When you want to convert it to audio, then you play it through FTS and record to audio as it plays. Or alternatively, you retune the midi file and then open the retuned midi file to render to audio - but just for the final mix.

With this way of working, you do all the editing with the unretuned source file. So it doesn't matter that the retuned midi file is hard to read as you only use it for the final mix.

For more about this approach, see Tutorials:How use FTS to compose microtonally

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