Melodyne in Cubase/Nuendo
- • Loading the Melodyne plug-in
- • Backing up and exchanging projects
- • Duplicating tracks
- • Saving plug-in settings for Melodyne
- • Exporting/printing Melodyne edits (audio mixdown)
- • Rewire
- • Miscellaneous notes
On this tour, you will learn how to make efficient use of Melodyne within Cubase and Nuendo. This tour relates to Cubase 8/Nuendo 6.
Please take note also of the information regarding the compatibility of Melodyne with Cubase/Nuendo on our website.
Loading the Melodyne plug-in
Insert Melodyne into one of the plug-in slots of the desired track. You will find Melodyne Plugin in the ‘Plug-Ins’ folder, where it is listed as ‘Celemony Melodyne’.
You are advised to insert Melodyne in the first plug-in slot – before the compressor, EQ or other effects. The reason is this: during the transfer, Melodyne records the input signal you intend to edit – and with it all effects ahead of it in the signal chain, which are then frozen into the signal and can no longer be adjusted. In order to use your compressor, EQ and other effects in the usual way, you need therefore to make sure they come after Melodyne Plugin in the signal chain.
Backing up and exchanging projects
During transfers, Melodyne records the track’s signal, making a copy of the passages transferred. Within the Cubase/Nuendo project structure, the resulting audio files are stored inside the specially created “Melodyne” folder in a sub-folder called “Transfers”. This means that if you want to be sure, when archiving your project or passing it on to others, that all instances of Melodyne will be able subsequently to find the audio files they need, the only thing you need to archive or pass on is the project folder.
If you are making a copy of your project using the “Back-up Project” command, please be sure to open the back-up project immediately one time. Only then will the “Melodyne” folder be included in the back-up.
When archiving and passing on projects, you do not need to worry about Melodyne’s audio cache, the size and location of which can be selected from Melodyne’s Preferences dialog. Melodyne will automatically restore the parameters found there, so there is no need to archive or copy them separately.
Sometimes you may want to copy a track including its Melodyne instance and Melodyne editing – in order, for instance, to generate a second voice. To do this, use the Duplicate Tracks command in Cubase/Nuendo’s Project menu.
Saving plug-in settings for Melodyne
Just as with an effects plug-in you can store different settings as presets, in Melodyne you can save different edits. You may wish to do this in order, for example, to allow a performer or artist to hear and choose between different edits of the same take. To save and reload Melodyne settings, follow the same procedures as for all other plug-ins.
Click in the upper part of the current Melodyne Plugin window on Manage Presets and select “Save Preset …”. Then assign a name to the current Melodyne edit. You can store alternative edits as additional presets and switch between them using the preset selector.
Exporting/printing Melodyne edits (audio mixdown)
When you are using Melodyne in a project and have finished editing, you have two choices:
You can allow the Melodyne instance(s) to remain active until the final mixdown. If you do this, you will retain access to your Melodyne editing and will be able to make further refinements until the very last moment. This is convenient, but as long as the plug-in remains active it is draining the resources of your system.
You can make your Melodyne editing permanent by ‘exporting’ it – i.e. recording the edited track(s) or passage(s) to a new audio file (or files). This will deprive you of further access to your Melodyne editing but allow you to deactivate the plug-in and thereby free up resources. Exporting your Melodyne edits has the further advantage of allowing you to pass the project on to colleagues who don’t have Melodyne.
To export the track containing Melodyne in Cubase/Nuendo and make your editing permanent, proceed as follows:
Specify the desired range within the Cubase/Nuendo timeline; you can record either the entire Melodyne track or simply a passage (or passages) within it.
Using the bypass function in the mixer or insert area of the track, deactivate the effects you do not wish to be included in the recording on the new track. The EQ and compression, for example, are things you will also wish to adjust on the new track, so these should not be included.
Automation is a similar case: decide whether it should be included in the transfer or whether you would prefer to copy the existing automation to the new track later, in order to retain access to it there. In that case, deactivate the automation in the left-hand track area of the edit window prior to the export. You can do this for all the automation (en bloc) or else for those control elements individually that you wish to deactivate.
To commence the export process, choose File > Export > Audio Mixdown from the menu bar. Now enter a name followed by the requisite audio resolution parameters.
In the section “Import into Project” be sure to activate the Audio Track option.
Now specify in the left-hand side of the window the track you wish to export.
Tip: the Realtime Export option delivers the most reliable results.
Now click on Export. Cubase/Nuendo will perform the audio mixdown and create a new track containing your Melodyne edits. If you wish, you can export multiple tracks simultaneously by selecting them in the “Channel Selection” pane on the left-hand side of the window prior to the mixdown.
Once you have performed the desired exports, in the Cubase/Nuendo mixer copy the deactivated effects by dragging them to the new track whilst holding down the ALT key; then reactivate them. You can transfer the automation data from the original Melodyne tracks to your new tracks using the copy and paste functions.
All that remains is to decide what to do with the original Melodyne tracks. You can either delete them or deactivate them by right-clicking in the track panel and choosing Disable Track. If you adopt the latter course, you will retain access to your original Melodyne editing and be able to make further refinements later simply by reactivating the tracks.
Note: the Channel Batch Export function, which you can activate in the same window, offers you the possibility of exporting multiple tracks simultaneously. The use of this function eliminates the risk of including unwanted send effects in the export.
Generally you will want to use Melodyne as a plug-in in Cubase or Nuendo. This is the most convenient way of working; it means, moreover, that all Melodyne data is stored within your session structure, making archiving and passing on your project easier. Occasionally, however, you may wish to integrate the stand-alone version of Melodyne into Cubase/Nuendo as a Rewire client.
This can be useful if, for example, you wish to adjust samples quickly to the project tempo. When the program is integrated via Rewire, this happens automatically as soon as you drag a sample from the finder or explorer and drop it in the Melodyne window. You can then play back the samples at the correct tempo via Rewire and make further use of them in Cubase/Nuendo, enhancing them there perhaps through the application of additional plug-ins.
To integrate Melodyne Stand-Alone into Cubase/Nuendo as a Rewire client, proceed as follows:
Launch Cubase/Nuendo first and choose Melodyne Singletrack Rewire from the Devices menu.
A window will open from which you can select the pair of outputs to be used for the audio transfer of the Melodyne document to Cubase/Nuendo. If you are working with a single Melodyne document, activate the Left and Right fields. The corresponding tracks will appear automatically in your project window. You can open multiple Melodyne documents and transfer their audio via separate channels to separate aux tracks in Cubase/Nuendo.
Now open Melodyne. This will launch Melodyne not as a plug-in but as a stand-alone application integrated via Rewire. The transport functions and tempo of the two programs will also be synchronized. The presence of an active Rewire connection is indicated by the fact that the two Rewire output channels can be selected from within the Melodyne user interface. If you are working with a single Melodyne document, select under Rewire: “1-2”.
Now load or else drag & drop the desired samples into Melodyne. These will then be analyzed and adapted to the project tempo. When you have finished editing the sample(s) in Melodyne, you can transfer the corresponding audio signals via Rewire from Melodyne to Cubase/Nuendo and record them there. To do this, use Cubase/Nuendo’s Audio Mixdown function, which is described above under “Exporting/printing Melodyne edits”.
Please note that data from Melodyne is not automatically saved along with your Cubase/Nuendo project when the two programs are linked via Rewire. To make it possible to recreate a work situation later, you must save the Melodyne document manually in the form of an MPD file – ideally in your Cubase/Nuendo project folder. When saving, activate the option “Save Audio File(s) in Copy” to ensure Melodyne saves a copy of the sample in the session folder.
Please set the I/O buffer size of your audio driver to 1,024 samples. Smaller values lead to a marked increase in the CPU load.
To alter the buffer size in Cubase or Nuendo, choose Device > Device Setup from the menu bar. From the left-hand side of the window, select your audio device under “VST Audio System” From the content that appears on the right-hand side of the window, select Control Panel. In the next window, set the buffer size.
Should you require a smaller buffer, e.g. when adjusting the headphone mix directly in your computer and not via an external channel strip or mixer, switch all instances of Melodyne during the recording to bypass Reactivate Melodyne as soon as you begin editing your new track.
If you are running a 64-bit version of Cubase/Nuendo, do not use the Bit Bridge to link with the 32-bit version of Melodyne. Instead use the 64-bit version of Melodyne, which is far more powerful.
Synchronization out by cycle length
If you activate Cubase/Nuendo’s cycle function but commence playback at a point after the cycle range, Melodyne will be noticeably out of sync.
Workaround: if you wish to play back the song from a later position, deactivate the Cubase/Nuendo cycle function.
Local playback and blob monitoring
To ensure blob monitoring and Melodyne’s local playback function remain activated, deselect the following option:
"Preferences > VST > Plug-Ins > Suspend VST3 plug-in processing when no audio signals are received”.