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Ok, there are a lot of threads about how to use tracks. This is a little different, I think...

I am looking to awser this: Pros and Cons of using a "Master" track or to break up your channels between tracks, not having all of them in the first "master" track.

My thought this year(2011), I am totally re-ramping my show, and adding and subtracting a lot. So I decided to start totally over again making a master template, I started so far, making numerous tracks for each area and type of item in display. My reason, is I want to be able to quickly go to that area while in sequencer, and edit those channels. I know a big "Con" is it becomes hard when doing your channel configs, and some weird issues I may have when importing the template. But a huge "Pro" I like is being able to find areas of the sequence fast.

The reason I think I am not going with a master track that has all the channels, is that it seems to be un-manageable now with approaching 500-600 channels this year. I am afraid of to many errors when importing down the road, when I add or subtract a channel. Last year, I messed up numerous times when I need to add a channel, or I rearranged the list, than after importing, the assignments were off. Looking to hear from some of you big guys out there, how you manage your channel layouts.

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Personally, a master track is absolutely necessary.. Without it, I don't see how you can get your other tracks to import from year to year, with channels being added, and subtracted from the other tracks...

The key thing is that you never insert or delete in your master track. You add stuff at the end, and you unconfigure channels that you are no longer using in the middle.. Never reorder either. This track is only about being able to import your old shows cleanly from year to year.

I think I have about 1000 channels in use in the city show template, and at least 50 scattered through that are not in use. Nearly all the blue that we have added in the last two years is in the bottom of the master track, even though they go with items much further up...

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-klb- wrote:

Personally, a master track is absolutely necessary..

Okay, I'll take the other side. I don't use a master track. I don't like the idea of channels appearing in more than one place. I segregate channels according to display elements, not geography. When I add a new display element I add a new track at the bottom. If I add channels to existing tracks, I add them at the bottom of the existing track. Adhering to those practices makes for no-problem importing of new lcc files into older sequences. In cases where I choose to add channels to the middle of existing tracks, I make a specific list and then have to manually make those adjustments in older sequences before importing the new lcc.

Hopefully, if the rumored new software upgrades are more than just rumors, we'll soon have the ability to sort channels in ways that could make multiple tracks obsolete.
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My first track is currently labeled in all caps, something like "do not touch". I actually don't have the same tracks, or same sorts from year to year, but this strategy has worked well for the city show the last two, with imports of the channel config into previous years shows.

Now if I could just be so organized with my home sequences!!!

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George Simmons wrote:

Hopefully, if the rumored new software upgrades are more than just rumors, we'll soon have the ability to sort channels in ways that could make multiple tracks obsolete.


That would be wonderful! I just tried to move to tracks to make sense of 4 years of add on's. WHat a pain with 40+ sequences.

I'd like to see spacer "channels" lines where I can add comments like "Mega-tree 1 below"
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Jeff Millard wrote:

I just wish there was a way to grab the Timing grids from other tracks. Copy and paste works, but I'm always nervous I'll miss something,

I don't know why you would miss something...

Select the first cell...hold down the SHIFT key...hit the END key (highlights the whole row)...Copy Timing...Paste Timing...

I always name my timing grids the same as the tracks they are in (IE: Mini Tree Track equals Mini Tree Timing Grid)
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George Simmons wrote:

I don't like the idea of channels appearing in more than one place.

George...

do you not sometimes Copy Channels from one track to another so you can line up events?

IE: if you have a Mini Tree Track and a Arch Track and you want an Arch Chase to start on the same beat as one of your Mini Trees...so you copy that Mini Tree Channel into the Arch Track?
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George Simmons wrote:

Hopefully, if the rumored new software upgrades are more than just rumors, we'll soon have the ability to sort channels in ways that could make multiple tracks obsolete.

Hopefully this will happen..but I would still use Tracks...

Hopefully we will be able to sort by the Channel Color selected...so if I want my Mini Tree Track sorted by "RED" I can do that...I don't think I would want ALL my "RED" channels to be sorted if I was just working with my Mini Trees.
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I just wish there was a way to grab the Timing grids from other tracks

Say your in new Track#3 ... just click on the drop down box next to Timing (upper right corner) and select one of the timing grids from either Track #1 or Track #2. I discovered this new feature and use it all the time.

I still agree with klb that a master track in Track#1 is a must, esp. if you have a lot of channels, have lots of songs you want to upgrade from year to year ... and are not starting over from scratch. Starting over from scratch, it makes sense to organize track#1 as much as possible and I view it as a kind of re-org which is very difficult and perhaps not something you can do every year, esp. on big displays.

I think its important to stress that some organization in your initial track can go a long way ... but from year to year, its easier to keep the master track intact and use say track#2 as your organized track and tracks #3,etc.. for even more organization and/or timings.

I wish there was just an ability to create display groups and toggle them on/off at will. I think if I could just assign things to groups, then use a hot key to toggle ON/OFF all the display group items ... it would be very useful. The display groups could then be associated. If suggested in the past another alternative: tags for channels. Then when I type into my view tags window, I get all items matching these tags. There could also be query button to control the tag query results, like [] contains any, [] contains all, [] contains none, etc.

The point would be ... you could assign words (tags) to every channel ... whatever you want, say up to (100) characters .. then you have a S2 tags query window ... type in what you want, check query options box ... then you see the channels that match only. Very useful I would think.
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taybrynn wrote:

Say your in new Track#3 ... just click on the drop down box next to Timing (upper right corner) and select one of the timing grids from either Track #1 or Track #2.

Yes...this a good feature UNTIL you now want this timing grid to be unique to the track you just copied it to...because if you make any changes to the Timing Grid in Track #3 it also changes in any other track that has that timing grid.

That's why I Copy Timing / Paste Timing and then name that new Timing Grid
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Jeff Millard wrote:

I just wish there was a way to grab the Timing grids from other tracks. Copy and paste works, but I'm always nervous I'll miss something...


When I create a new sequence the first thing I do is run the Beat Wizard and create and save a number of freeform timing grids based on multiples of the beat. I use 2x, 3x, 4x, 5x, 6x, 7x, 8x, 9x. Those multiples cover practically every element of the display and allow me to easily switch grids to accomplish different movement speeds. Because I'm working with beats and not fixed grids, I can subdivide the beat by 9 for my poles and then switch to the 7x grid for arches and both will sweep from one end to the other and arrive at exactly the same instant, despite having different numbers of segments.

If you're switching timing grids instead of copying and pasting timings, you don't have to worry about missing something and it's quicker. If you ARE copying, I believe using EDIT > SELECT > ROW is the safest way to not miss something.
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jimswinder wrote:

George... do you not sometimes Copy Channels from one track to another so you can line up events?

IE: if you have a Mini Tree Track and a Arch Track and you want an Arch Chase to start on the same beat as one of your Mini Trees...so you copy that Mini Tree Channel into the Arch Track?


No Jim - I don't want a duplicate channel ANYWHERE. For me it just works out better that way. When I create new sequences, I usually add in a "Beat Track" that I use only while sequencing. (After I finish sequencing I usually delete it so I don't have to remember where I left it all the time or remember where to put it so when I copy in a new .lcc file it doesn't scramble things.) I have the beat wizard turn on every other timing for the entire song. Then, when I need to, I move this track around in between the poles and arches (or whatever) to make sure that I'm starting or ending events in different tracks at precisely the same time. Having the beats alternately on and off in the beat track makes it easy to sync tracks that might be using different grids or different beat subdivisions.

For those instances where I want to copy events from one track to another I'll usually just use paste by time and not worry about whatever timing marks I might already have in the destination track.
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jimswinder wrote:

hmmmm...didn't know that was there..

THANKS GEORGE!!!

You're welcome. But doesn't this sort of discovery make you think something like: "hmmm - I wonder what other treasures I might find here if only I spent a few minutes studying and even trying out ALL the various commands in the software?"
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Jeff Millard wrote:

Or picking George's brain in really great idea sharing threads Chuck starts randomly when he's really bored. I'll look closer at this tonight while storm watching at work. Thanks George. I've found that while I think I have a pretty good handle on how to accomplish my goals... You've always got an easier way to that same end. I really appreciate your insight. Thank you.

It's just paying it back and forward friend. If I made a list of everyone who helped me or everyone from whom I've learned something or stolen an idea it would be a very long list indeed...
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George Simmons wrote:

You're welcome. But doesn't this sort of discovery make you think something like: "hmmm - I wonder what other treasures I might find here if only I spent a few minutes studying and even trying out ALL the various commands in the software?"

lol...why try it out when I have you to tell me?!?!?!

I'm too busy sequencing to find "treasures" that would cut my sequencing time in half!! LOL
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Donny M. Carter wrote:

George can you please expand on dividing the beats to fit your poles and arches.

I'm no George, but this is how I do it:

Find the timing marks (beat) where you want the arches to start and stop.

I then DELETE any timing marks in between those two, THEN subdivide between your two marks by the number of sections in your arch...for me it is nine.

You now have 9 equal marks that should coincide with the "beat"...

But I bet Georges' way is better!! Which I am going to try on the next song I sequence. :?
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And a PS to my post above:

Hopefully then all your "beats" are the same and then you can just copy and paste any other "arch event" that you want to look like that without worrying about the timing marks...

Just be sure to change you Paste Mode to Paste By Time and not Paste by Cell

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Guest Don Gillespie

jimswinder wrote:

And a PS to my post above:

Hopefully then all your "beats" are the same and then you can just copy and paste any other "arch event" that you want to look like that without worrying about the timing marks...

Just be sure to change you Paste Mode to Paste By Time and not Paste by Cell


This is a good thread I have been doing what George is doing since I started with the beat wizzard makes sequencing easier I really like your idea Jim with the arches kind of takes the guess work out of all this timing thing I haven't used the tracks before but I am leaning towards them as my channel count grows went from 32 in 09 to 64 in 2010 didn't use all of my controllers last year but will be 112 to 160 channels in 2011 so I can see this as a definite help
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jimswinder wrote:

Donny M. Carter wrote:
George can you please expand on dividing the beats to fit your poles and arches.

I'm no George, but this is how I do it:

Find the timing marks (beat) where you want the arches to start and stop.

I then DELETE any timing marks in between those two, THEN subdivide between your two marks by the number of sections in your arch...for me it is nine.

You now have 9 equal marks that should coincide with the "beat"...

But I bet Georges' way is better!! Which I am going to try on the next song I sequence.  :?




JIM, I'm trying to get this right and must be missing something.
1. set beats in beat wizard
2. figure out at what point I want arches
3. remove the timing between those two points(how do I do that?)
4. divide that by number of sections in my arches(7)

Thanks for the help.
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