QuickScore Elite Tutorials

Controller Editor Tutorial

Getting Started  How To  Manual  MIDI and Audio

This tutorial will acquaint you with the Controller Editor. We want to start again, using the file TUTOR13.QSD, so let's load it again if you don't already have it loaded. Click on the File menu, select Open and double-click on the TUTOR13.QSD entry in the file list box.

The Controller Editor can be used to edit all kinds of data of a continuous nature, including controllers, pitch bend, aftertouch, note velocity, tempo changes and program changes.

The Controller Editor's control area has the following features:

  • A data type list box.
  • A track list box for changing from track to track.
  • A channel list box showing the channel or channels being edited.
  • A step list box for controlling the spacing between adjacent events.
  • A display note list box (only for polyphonic aftertouch).
  • A change note list box (only for polyphonic aftertouch).
  • A toolbar.
  • A mouse position locator showing the time and amplitude of the mouse.
  • An event position locator showing the time and amplitude of the event closest to the mouse.
  • A button to show notes or hide notes in the controller window.

The Controller Editor's window has the following features:

  • Time is displayed on the horizontal axis.
  • Amplitude is displayed on the vertical axis. The amplitude displayed depends on the kind of data being displayed. For example, pitch bend data has a range from ?8192 to +8192 and controllers have a range of 0 to 127.
  • Bar numbers are shown above the display.
  • Beats are shown as gray vertical lines.
  • Amplitude levels are shown as horizontal lines.
  • Controllers or other data are displayed as vertical blue lines.
  • Superimposed on the controller display is a piano roll display of the notes in the current track. This can be turned off by clicking on the Hide Notes button.

When we first select the Controller Editor, note velocities are displayed. Each note is shown in piano roll notation and the velocities of the notes are shown as vertical blue lines at the point the notes start. The height of the blue lines represents the amplitude of the velocity.

Changing Note Velocity

Let's change the velocities of the third sixteenth note in the first two beats of bar one. This will accent that note, giving a syncopated effect. Select the NS tool from the toolbar. Move the mouse over the third sixteenth note in beat one so that its velocity is highlighted in red. Now change the velocity by holding the left mouse button down and dragging the mouse across the blue line at the height you want the velocity to be. Let's set the velocity to 96. Release the mouse button.

Now let's move the mouse over to the third sixteenth note in the second beat. It should be highlighted in red. In the event position locator, the time and amplitude of the highlighted event are shown. Now instead of using the mouse to change the velocity, we will use the UP ARROW key. Press the UP ARROW key until the amplitude of the event is 96. You can see the amplitude change in the event position locator as well as in the window. Play the notes on the screen by pressing P to see what affect the changes in velocity have produced.

Entering Volume Controllers

Now let's put in some volume controller changes. Click on the data type list box (above the toolbar) and choose 7 Main Volume. This is continuous controller number seven, which is generally assigned to main volume. Select the pencil tool. We'll create a velocity curve by clicking the mouse near the left edge of the screen and dragging the mouse to the right edge of the screen while holding the left mouse button down, and then releasing the mouse button. Draw in a curve starting with an amplitude of around 32, swelling to around 112 and then fading back to 64. Press P to hear what this sounds like.

Now let's try another way to enter a volume swell.

Erasing Controllers

You can erase the volume curve by selecting Undo from the Edit menu, but just for the practice, we'll select the arrow tool (the first one) from the toolbar and select all the volumes by clicking the left mouse button before the first one, dragging the mouse while holding the mouse button down to a point after the last one and then releasing the mouse button. From the edit menu select Cut and your controllers will all disappear.


Now select the pencil tool again and enter a single controller near the beginning of the screen with a value of 32. Put in another one at the start of bar 2 with a value of 96. Put in a third at the right side of the screen with a value of 32.

Select the arrow tool. Position the arrow a little to the left of the first controller. Press and hold down the left mouse button and drag the mouse to the right of the second controller. Both controllers should be highlighted in red. Release the mouse button. and an edit menu will drop down. Select Interpolate from the edit menu. Now a ramp of controllers will appear, creating an even crescendo between the two volume controllers. Do the same for the highest volume and the last volume you put in at the right edge of the screen. Now you have an even decrescendo back down again matching the one going up.


Feel free to fool around as much as you wish with editing controllers.