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Chapter 4. Recording Audio > Recording Automatically: Cycle Recording

Recording Automatically: Cycle Recording

Cycle recording offers another way to automate audio recording and playback in Cubase. Unlike punch recording, cycle recording records in a loop, where each pass, or take, creates its own part in the editor. Although these takes seem to be unique, stand-alone pieces of audio, Cubase creates a single long audio file during cycle recording. That full audio file can be viewed and edited as a group of takes, which makes editing bits and pieces of different passes into a final version much easier.

For now, we'll use the default setting, Create Regions. Choose this setting unless you have a reason to choose differently.

To cycle record audio

Activate the Cycle button on the Transport bar (Figure 4.34) as well as the Punch-In and Punch-Out buttons.

Figure 4.34. The Cycle button is active on the Transport bar.

If you want to hear a click while cycle recording, click the Click button on the Transport bar.

Record–enable the tracks you want to record.

Click the ruler to start playback somewhere before the start of the loop.

Click Play on the Transport bar.

The audio will play back until it reaches the punch-in point at the start of the loop, at which point recording will start.

The track will record over the loop indefinitely, creating a new region with each loop.

When you're finished recording, click the Stop button on the Transport bar. Only the most recent cycle will appear in the Project window (Figure 4.35), but all of the cycles can be played back and edited.

Figure 4.35. All of the individual takes are “behind” this finished part created with cycle recording.

Cycle Recording References

Exactly what Cubase does while cycle recording depends on the preferences that you choose. Cubase will always record the whole audio file in the same way, but the recording can create audio events, audio regions, or both.

  • If you choose to create events, then each pass in the cycle creates a new event, and all events are stacked on top of each other like note cards. This means that each take can be moved and edited individually as an event.

  • When each take creates a new region, the looped section in the Project window can quickly point to any of the regions created by cycle recording. You may prefer working with regions instead of events, particularly if you use the Pool for exporting parts of files for use in other programs, which can be easier when regions are recorded in cycle mode.

  • You can also choose to create both events and regions in the preferences.

For reasons we'll get to later, using regions when you cycle record can make creating composite tracks a bit easier, but you can still create comps using events, so don't worry if you have a lot of events created by cycle recording. This setting can be changed by selecting File > Preferences and clicking the Record tab (Figure 4.36).

Figure 4.36. Cycle recording settings in the Audio Preferences panel.

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