Using midi with audio

I’ve been recording audio and mixing in audacity. But this program does not support midi. So, what’s the next step? Because I have a controller and want to spice up my recordings.

Thanx, as usual.

There are lots of [u]DAWs[/u] that support MIDI (and audio). [u]Cakewalk[/u] is now FREE!

Thanks Doug. Downloading now.

I’ve downloaded it but it’s not a standalone program like audacity. You have to log in to use it. And of course, I’m going to get spammed from them now. I want something that I can download and store on my drive.

I don’t have Cakewalk but as far as I know, BandLab is not “evil”. There are other choices and if you search for “free DAW” I’m pretty sure there are free ones. (Cakewalk used to be a commercial program called SONAR from a company called Cakewalk.)

REAPER (which I also don’t own) is a “good deal” because a license for home or small-business use is only $60 USD, and you get free upgrades through the next full-version (with incremental upgrades as they come-along) so that’s usually a few years of upgrades, and there is a fully-functional 60-day free trial. However, it doesn’t come with any virtual instruments so you have to find (free or commercial) 3rd-party VSTi’s.

What do you want to do with MIDI?
Audacity has limited support for MIDI, but includes playback and very basic editing.

I have an akai LPK25 and want to overdub on the audio tracks. I doubt that can be done. I know that I can generate tones in audacity and that must be midi. I want to use my keyboard instead of manually building up chords or sounterpoint.

Audacity can’t record MIDI.
What software do you normally use with the akai LPK25?

I’m just learning the LPK25. I just learned to get audible sound by using a sequencer - JJsequencer. That’s as far as I have gotten. I still haven’t even been able to record the midi on it’s own, let alone overdub my audio tracks. I have already accepted that I won’t be using midi in audacity. So what’s next. The suggested program is not suitable because it’s an online program. I don’t want to be uploading my music to a website. I want a stand-alone program that handles audio along with midi.

I know that I can generate tones in audacity and that must be midi.

No, that’s just math and algorithms with no hardware/software MIDI interface.

The suggested program is not suitable because it’s an online program. I don’t want to be uploading my music to a website.

I don’t use MIDI but there are several applications listed in the DAW link I gave you. I only mentioned Cakewalk because it’s free and it’s not mentioned in the other link.

Or, if live near a music store they can probably give you some advice. Or, just Google “MIDI software”. :wink:

I think that Cakewalk by BandLab supports audio and MIDI (and it’s free).

Then in what limited way is midi available in audacity?

You can
a) import MIDI files
b) play the MIDI file
c) do very simple editing and export back

See: Note Tracks - Audacity Manual


So then, audacity is compatible with midi? I’m not interested in overdub recording directly into audacity with my LPK25. I expect that I can learn how to record the keyboard with the JJsequencer, while monitoring a base track, then import the files into audacity and be able to edit and mix and export them.

you can’t mix MIDI and audio tracks.

There is no “Render” to turn MIDI into proper audio in Audacity.


Surely this is a common problem. I only began by recording 16 and 24 bit audio files and now want to add midi tracks. It’s either or? I mean, had I started with midi, I would not now be able to add audio files? Or are more advanced store-bought programs able to handle this?

I’m only asking to use a synthesizer in combination with analog.

OK. I’ve previewed that page and see that I will be able to do what I want. I can cut, paste and delete. I won’t be able to alter the sound with effects. That’s fine, since that is done in the sequencer. So, will I be able to mix the analog with the midi?

Then why handle midi in audacity at all?

Audacity is essentially an audio recording and editing program.

Audacity also has the ability to import / export and play MIDI files, and has very basic MIDI editing. Audacity’s MIDI capability will probably increase in the future, but the main priority for the foreseeable future is audio.

Although Audacity does not have a “render” feature for MIDI, it is possible to “record” the MIDI as audio. To do this, you need to ensure that all audio tracks are muted, and that the MIDI track plays properly, then you can set Audacity to record the audio playing on the computer. See: Tutorial - Recording audio playing on the computer - Audacity Manual

I agree that it is not very useful at the moment, though there are a few situations where it can be useful. Probably the main use at present is if you are using audio and MIDI in another application, but you need to use some audio feature in Audacity that is not available in the other application. In this use case, being able to play a MIDI track can be a useful guide for timing the audio.

I always think it would be a lot more useful if we had a Render MIDI command to turn a MIDI Note track into an audio track.

Yes, the kludge you mention can work Steve - but it is a bit faffy (I’ve tried it)

If Audacity can covert the MIDI to payable audio - then surely it must be pretty straightforward to render it into an audio track ?