Automation in Podium is track based, with automation points enclosed in curve sequences, which are presented the same way as note sequences and sound events in the arrangement editor. Curve sequences can thus be moved, resized, split, and time-stretched, among other editing actions. It is also possible to create phantom copies of curve sequences.
Automatable parameters include MIDI parameters (for example, Control Change, Program Change, or SysEx), VST plugin parameters, and Podium mixer parameters (level, pan, send). Mixer parameter automation is applied as a relative offset to the track gain, pan and send settings. For example, you can adjust the track gain value to fit it into the mix, and any existing level automation on the track will automatically be offset to the new overall gain value. Level and send parameters range from minus infinity (off) to zero dB. Thus you need to set the gain and send track settings to the maximum peak value that you require, which then can be reached with the maximum 0 dB automation value.
Parameter tracks can be created manually by selecting parameters from a menu, or they can be created automatically by recording parameter changes made with the mouse in plugin editors or with connected MIDI controllers. See the recording automation section for more information.
To manually create a parameter track, select a parameter from the Parameter submenu of the track context menu, or from the Parameter panel in the inspector. See the track inspector chapter for more information. This will create a parameter track, which appears as a child track of the track to which the automated device is assigned. To change the parameter object assigned to a parameter track, Shift+click the parameter selector. See the track controls section in the tracks chapter for more information. When you create a new parameter track, a curve sequence spanning the length of the arrangement is automatically created on the parameter track.
Note: To be able to record or edit MIDI parameters in a plugin or hardware device, it is required that the device definition contains parameter objects that define the MIDI messages. Not all MIDI messages are created by default when you for example import a plugin. Use the Parameter panel in the inspector to create and edit MIDI parameter objects. See the parameters and track inspector chapters for more information.
Parameter tracks in the mixer appear with a fader representing the value of the curve sequence at the play/edit cursor position. If there is no curve sequence at the play cursor position, the fader knob is drawn dimmed.
The parameter selector shown in the mixer strip header will be vertically aligned to the source/effect selector that it belongs to, provided that the Show Effect chains mixer option is enabled. This provides a helpful visual clue, when you for example have automated the same parameter on two different effect tracks. This could be the send parameter automated for both “Send 1” and “Send 2”, which will show up as “Send” in the mixer strip title for both parameter tracks. The track lane header does not have the same visual clue tying a parameter track to an effect, so it includes the controlled effect name in parentheses in the header title, such as “Send (Send 1)”.
If you have created parameter tracks for multiple effects on a single track, the parameter tracks are sorted with the topmost effects appearing first. This top to bottom order cannot be changed, but you can rearrange parameter tracks that belong to the same source/effect selector. Use the parameter track Move submenu, or drag the parameter track lane header up/down in the track list.
The fader on a parameter mixer strip will use the full available height of the strip, with the exception of the level and send parameters. These parameters are automating dB gain values in the Podium mixer, and so the faders are aligned vertically to match the level markings of gain faders and meters on audio tracks.
Parameter changes can be recorded with hardware MIDI controllers, by adjusting controls in VST plugin editor windows, or using the controls in embedded plugin editors in the rack or mixer. See the mixing and track inspector chapters for more information on embedded plugin editors.
To record automation using a MIDI controller, the controls on VST plugin editors, or embedded editors, the respective track must be record armed, and recording mode enabled on the transport toolbar. When recording parameter changes to a device assigned to an effect track with a MIDI controller, the appropriate MIDI input must be assigned to the effect track by selecting the track in the rack, and assigning the input device from the Input panel in the inspector.
Note: It is not required to enable recording mode or record arm a track when using parameter value faders on parameter tracks in the mixer to record automation.
When you record using the mouse on controls in VST plugin editor windows, embedded editors, or parameter faders in the mixer, automation will be recorded for as long as you keep a control active by holding the left mouse button.
Recording automation with MIDI controllers, VST plugin editors, or embedded editors will create a series of bar point events, to ensure that playback will reproduce the exact same series of parameter changes. Dragging the faders on parameter tracks in the mixer during playback will create a series of line point events, resulting in gradual value changes.
Note: Changes to mixer parameters (level, pan, send level) can only be recorded using the faders on parameter tracks in the mixer.
Tip: Changes made to a curve sequence by dragging a parameter fader in the mixer can be cancelled by right-clicking while dragging the fader.
To record only changes to specific parameters, you can record arm individual parameter tracks. Use punch mode to record only within a certain timeline range. See the recording chapter for more information. Note that punch mode does not affect automation recording when using the faders on parameter tracks in the mixer.
Curve sequences are primarily edited with the curve editor, see the curve sequence chapter for more information.
Alternatively, the parameter value faders on parameter tracks in the mixer can be used to input parameter changes even when playback is stopped. Dragging a fader will edit the curve sequence at the edit cursor position - if the edit cursor is positioned at a point on an existing curve that uses line or spline points, a line point will be created. Otherwise a bar point will be created, resulting in an abrupt parameter value change. If there is no curve sequence at the edit cursor position, the previous sequence will be extended or a new one will be created automatically at the start of the drag action.
Note: Adjustments made to parameter value faders are logged in the arrangement undo history.
For MIDI parameters that only need to be set to a fixed value at a certain point on the timeline, you can insert parameter events directly on the timeline, as an alternative to curve sequences.
Parameter events can be created for MIDI parameters by dragging parameter objects from the Parameter panel in the track inspector onto the timeline area of a track. The events are drawn as squares with a header showing the parameter name. The left edge of the square is aligned at the event time position. If the parameter object has a value range, as defined in the Parameter Properties dialog, the parameter event will show a value along with a dial you can use to change the value. See the parameters chapter for more information. The dial is sized according to track height.
The Parameter Properties dialog for a parameter object contains a Record as curve sequence on separate track check box. This setting determines if recording parameter changes should generate curve sequences or parameter events.
If there are several parameter events stacked on top of each other, it can be difficult to select an individual event with the mouse. If you select one of the events, you can use the left/right arrow keys to step between the events. The selected event will always be drawn on top of unselected events. Alternatively, you can use the event list on the Track panel in the inspector, where you can view all parameter events on the track, and edit their values with the dials in the list. If you want to enter a precise value, open the Parameter Event Properties dialog by double-clicking the event or pressing the Enter key when the event has key focus.
When you edit the parameter event value, it is applied to the parameter in real time so you can audition the effect of the value change.