This is a trick I use often and I thought you might find useful.

The Sonitus Compressor that comes free with Cakewalk is the most clear  picture of what each of the compressor parameters do in my opinion.

Here you see a spike in a clip.  I put the compressor on this and set the attack time at zero so it gets activated right away.  I set the release to 1ms because I want it to stop acting really quickly.  I just want to blunt the peak.

The two gauges on the left (input) show you the signal level.  Here in this snapshot you can see I just passed the peak when I took this snap shot, but it was captured as two green lines where the peak was.  I set the little pull down button just below the peaks (here about -10 db).  I set the Ratio at 3:1 and the knee to hard, which you can see on the nice graph.  I set the limiter on as well.

Now, the peak will be reduced.  You may need to adjust the Attack time and the Release time depending on the peak you want to cut.

I’ve used the Sonitus Compressor for over 30 years and it never fails me.

There were a series of distinct pops in this vocal track. The first screenshot shows them and the second screenshot shows the fix. They are the 5 bars that go up the whole frequency spectrum about a quarter of the way over from the left.

I did this really quickly and it sounds acceptable. If I spent a lot of time I could probably get it perfect.

It was as easy as highlighting sections of the noise bars and cutting them out of the track. Then highlighting what remained and hitting delete. The delete function brings those sounds down without fully erasing them. I hit delete a few times and it mostly fixed the issue.

Sometimes a track will sound great with a few exceptions, where the player hit a note a little too strongly. Here’s a good way I’ve found to make these spikes better without having to record again.

This is not a radical example here – the spike shown is probably mostly under control, but I’m using it just to demonstrate that sometimes your eyes are almost as good as your ears.

Here is a bass note recorded into Cakewalk by Bandlab. You can see a small spike near the beginning of the note, particularly on the bottom side..

Looking at the rest of my track, this only happens in a few instances. In order not to affect most of the track, I cut so that I am only processing this one note.

In Cakewalk, I really like the simplicity and the quality of their free Sonitus plugins. You can right click on the little cut track of the note and then insert an effect only on to this clip. I’m going to put the Sonitus compressor on it.

Here’s how the plugin looks. I’ve already set some of the parameters, which I will detail below. There’s a small square in the right hand top corner where you can get to the plugin you loaded on the clip.

I’m just trying to get rid of the spike above where my cursor is. I set the attack to zero because I want the compressor to act right away. I set the release to 1ms because I only want the compressor to work for a short period of time, so that the rest of the note is not affected.

I played the note to get an idea on how loud the input is.. You can see on the bars on the left what the level is. I slide the threshold control (on the colored volume bars) down just a little to -3.3. I set a pretty hard ratio of 5.0:1 with a hard knee. There is a limiter button also, which I usually keep on.

All of these values are trial and error. Once you get something that will work, you can apply it to the note segment (select the segment, right click and bounce to clip), and the waveform you see will change. I did this here, and this is what the wave segment now looks like.

You can see that the spike is somewhat reduced. If you find that things are flattened out to much, like in the image below, you can always edit->undo in Cakewalk and get back your original waveform.

It’s a little bit of trial and error, but at least you have a visual indication of what you are working with.

This can also be done for a whole track if you need to, but it is always a good idea to try to not affect anything other than what you need to fix.

Here’s a before and after side by side.

Seems like forever that I just went from guitar to direct box to preamp to USB interface to DAW. It always worked fine, but was problematic.

If I used that method and tried to put on the effects inside the DAW, the latency was too much to bear, so I always laid the guitar tracks down with no effects, listening to the output from the preamp. This eliminated all latency, but of course the guitar sounded like a very low volume no character twang. I had to imagine what it would sound like with effects.

I use the RME TotalMix software mixer. It is fantastic, but confusing to get up to speed on it.

Anyway, today I got fed up with the volume issues and decided to make it better. I had given my son a small Orange amp, but he has his mind on other things, so I stole it back.

Well I can’t believe I waited so long to do this. It gave me plenty of power, and enough character to play more easily. I still put effects on after I record, but this has made things so much easier.

Another thing that it made me realize is the difference between pickups and volume and tone controls on my Fender Strat. I was so used to just using the bottom two pickup positions with the tone and volume full open on the guitar. There was little difference otherwise. Now, each switch position and the tone knob changes makes a huge difference.

I’m so glad I finally did this. Details below.

Here’s what I tried…

From the guitar to my direct box

From the direct box to the Orange Crush input.

From the Orange headphones out to the Behringer ADA8200 preamp

From the Behringer to an RME Babyface Pro USB Audio Interface

Into the TotalMix software and to the DAW

This is not clearly explained in the manual, but I found a nice guy willing to help on YouTube.

Check out the video here. In the Replies is more information on the mapping which I will try to repeat here.

You will need the Controller Editor, which came with your Mikro – you should find it installed or in the Native Access program. On my Windows 10 machine it is here: C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Native Instruments\Controller Editor. You will need to open this in Administrator mode. I created a link on my taskbar.

First create new template and name it in the controller editor. Here a snapshot of mine (after I set it all up)

Then, select all the pads (shift click from right top to bottom left to select all). Once you do this , go to ASSIGN tab, then the action tab labeled “Press” and set Type to None.

In Superior Drummer 3, I selected the drum set I wanted and set up all the routing. Don’t forget to make sure you have set the MIDI input in your DAW to the MASCHINE Micro MK3 and also make sure your drums trigger on channel 10 if you chose to do that. Then once you are happy with your drum setup, save it as a project in your Superior Drummer. You can probably make this a default but I haven’t done that yet.

Now this is the lame but necessary part. You need to decide how you want your drums to be laid out in your head or write it down. You will need to go back and forth between SD3 and Controller Editor and change the values for each pad that matches the note values in SD3. In the Controller Editor you do this under ASSIGN>Hit tab, note. Use the format C0, NOT C-0, or you will be sorely disappointed.

In SD3 you find these notes by unfolding the “midi mapping tab on the right side of SD3. If you don’t see it, it is under the show pop down menu. make sure to unfold hamburger menu in midi mapping and view “show keys”

Now, select the individual drum with mouse to identify the value and punch that in to the controller editor.

Remember you can change the articulations of each drum but you will need to save it under: Mini in/EDrum Settings > Save as under user presets.

Make sure your MIKRO is in MIDI mode. It should show up in the little window on your MIKRO.

I did a couple of other steps as well. I set the MIDI channel to 10 on all of the pads and changed the color values. Here’s an example.

You should make sure the final template is save in the controller. You can call it up anytime you need it.

I use Sonar as my DAW (Free from Bandlab now!) – I’ve set up a nice template that has everything set up the way I like to start. If you do this you should have very little setup to do after you initialize everything.

A big thanks to Broken Bird Productions

Please check out his YouTube videos and subscribe.

Here is my colorful MIKRO setup

Here’s my current drum setup in Superior Drummer

This has been the bane of my existence, but I came across a post that showed how to do it. I am capturing it here for any poor lost intrepid souls.

If you have a tempo map that you spent hours, yea, days to perfect, you can move it to a new project. I wanted to do this so that I could update an old project to a new template. Here’s what I found out:

Load the MIDI file containing your source tempo map into Sonar as a new project.  Then open up the tempo map to make sure it’s actually in there.

Then Select All and then hit ALT-CTRL-C (Copy Special) and make sure that only “tempo changes” is ticked. Hit OK.  Now the clipboard should now contain the tempo map

Then open up the project that you wish to merge this tempo map with.  Move the NOW to the start of the project.  Hit ALT-CTRL-V (Paste Special).  Make sure that the Tempo Changes is the only event type ticked.  (All other event types should be greyed out as the clipboard should only contain tempo change events)

Note, you may need to open  up the tempo view before doing the Paste to make sure there are no existing tempo changes that would confuse the project.

Hit OK

Open up the tempo view and your tempo map should be present there as pasted.

Windows 10: Adding and Keeping custom columns in File Explorer

Every so often I get the crazy urge to clean up my photo, music or video content and when I do I love to see specific columns in File Explorer.  For Photos, its Date Taken and maybe even Camera Model.  For Music, its Album Size and Protected (to sort between music I’ve purchased or not)


The problem I had was keeping those settings for those folders.  I did some searching and found articles and notes on changing the registry etc, but finally found that you just need to make a few simple changes: Setting the Media template and saving the customizations to that media template.


First,  Select the parent folder and set it to Music, Pictures, Documents, Video or General (whichever you want to customize)

Let’s stick with Music for this example:


Right click on the parent folder and select Properties ->Customize.

Select the template you want to use.

Make sure to select “Also apply this to all subfolders”

Click OK to exit.

Next, customize the folder view with the columns that you want:

Right client anywhere in the red box area…

Select More if you don’t see the attribute you want to add on the quick list.

For Example – I’ve added Protected and Size.

For music I’ve also sorted by # so all tracks will appear in order.


Once you have that setup the way you want it, go to View on the File Explorer menu and select Options -> Change Folder and Search options:

Under view click Apply to Folders.  This will apply the changes you made above to all folders marked as Music.

Repeat customizations for Pictures, Documents or just General folders.

Hope that Helps!

Here is a link to the RX Audio Cookbook for spectral audio correction:

Here’s a copy on the home page as well.

Welcome to the iZotope RX Audio Cookbook

The iZotope RX Audio Cookbook is designed to help you find solutions or ‘recipes’ for solving common audio problems. Each recipe includes step-by-step directions, before and after audio examples, illustrations and tips for solving stubborn problems.

As you work through the Cookbook, be sure to send us your feedback.

Just another tip I found on the web.

Remoting into desktop for UBUNTU. I did something and the menus no longer showed up when I would try remote connection.

This helped me to have my top bar of applications show up again.

cd /home/”youruser”
echo “gnome-session –session=ubuntu-2d” > .xsession
sudo /etc/init.d/xrdp restart

The tip was here:

Just upgraded to the latest version of Windows. Internet was connected but could not browse.

Searched a bunch of pages – tried a bunch of things.

What worked is this: A Clean Restart

– Hold down Shift
– Click Start
– Click the power button and select Shut down
– Keep Shift held down till the computer completely powers down
– Reboot

et Voila – the internet browsing works.

What an annoying problem.

This is the solution.

Had my Sprint gold 64gb S6 since the 12th and have noticed that when I turn off WiFi and get close
to a place I’ve connected before it will automatically connect to it if anybody can help me
figure how to get it to stop this?

This is the Sprint Connections Optimizer. To turn off,
you go to Settings>>Mobile Networks>>Connections Optimizer,
where you can uncheck “Connections Optimizer”

Also, be sure to deselect connecting to partners wifi automatically.
I noticed my S6 was still connecting automatically to Xfinity the
other day because this was still checked.