The MIDI Forum

  Tuesday, 23 May 2017
  2 Replies
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Hey all,

I am a new member to this community, and have no experience with MIDI whatsoever (I just have the cable and the raw MIDI files, and don't know how to utilize them).

I am a pianist who has recorded using MIDI several tracks using an 88 key piano. These are mostly accompaniments to concertos, and so they are long and often require a high deal of concentration. I do not want to re-record the tracks every time I make a mistake, especially if it is near the end.

The MIDI files contain mistake notes here and there. But of course, as they are MIDI-based, changing specific notes should be no problem. I just don't know how to do it.

So, my question is, how do I change a mistake note into the "correct" note? This means all dynamics and duration of the note remain the same, just the key would be different.

What would be the best software to modify MIDI files in this fashion? If someone is also familiar with the recommended software, may you briefly go over the steps on how to change specific notes in MIDI?

I am not that tech savvy, so please help!

Hannah Li
That software is called a (MIDI) sequencer. They are typcially designed to allow recording in real time, but import/export of MIDI files is also possible.

Wikipedia has a list of software sequencers and DAWs with sequencing features, and a comparison of MIDI editors and sequencers.
6 years ago
Any DAW with MIDI capabilities should be able to handle that, and some commercial DAWs have free lite or older versions available-- e.g., PreSonus Studio One comes in a free lite edition called Studio One Prime, and Tracktion has a free older version called T5.

However, if you aren't used to working with MIDI on a piano roll editor and would find it easier to work with a musical score, you might want to consider a notation program instead of a DAW. (Many DAWs include a notation view in addition to their piano roll editor, but a notation program will generally have more sophisticated functions for notation.) As with DAWs, some commercial notation programs have free versions available-- Finale Notepad, for instance, or Forte Free. The free versions often have a lot of restrictions as far as things like how many staves (different instrument parts or MIDI channels) you can work with at once; but if your MIDI recordings basically contain just a single channel for piano, those types of restrictions might not impact you. There's also a completely free non-commercial program called MuseScore, which is loaded with all sorts of functions and might have a definite learning curve.

Either way-- piano roll editor or staff notation-- all you have to do to fix an incorrect note is click on it and drag it up or down as needed. If you're using a notation program, you might also need to add an accidental, but on a piano roll there are rows for the black keys as well as the white keys.
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