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REAPER™ Power!: The Comprehensive Guide

Book Description

REAPER is an astoundingly powerful but also astonishingly low-priced alternative to more "traditional" DAW software. REAPER incorporates all sorts of tools that make your recording and post-production experiences as pain-free, productive, fast, and enjoyable as possible. You just have to understand what they are, how they work, and how you can use them. Above all, you need to understand how they can be made to work together to help you really bring out the best in your musical creations. REAPER Power!: The Comprehensive Guide opens the lid on REAPER and helps readers discover the real power of this incredible DAW software for recording, editing and mixing audio, and MIDI. Among other topics, it shows readers how to get the best out of REAPER's supplied plug-ins, how to use the program's unique channel splitting and routing capabilities to best advantage, and how to customize the program to make it really fly--and be responsive to your individual recording needs. Best of all, the book's companion CD contains more than 100 REAPER project files that demonstrate real-life examples of the many techniques explained in the book so you can test your skills right away as you learn them. The companion disc even includes a fully functional evaluation copy of REAPER so you can get started right away!

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
  2. Acknowledgments
  3. About the Author
  4. Introduction
    1. Whom This Book Is For
    2. What You’ll Find in This Book
    3. How This Book Is Organized
  5. 1. The REAPER Environment
    1. What You Should Already Know
    2. The Multidisciplinary and Multifunctional Approach
    3. The Environment Parameters
      1. Preferences Settings
      2. Visual Layout
      3. The REAPER Toolkit
      4. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    4. Underneath the Hood
    5. What’s on the CD
  6. 2. REAPER Project Foundation Power
    1. Introduction
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
      1. Preferences Settings
        1. General Preferences
        2. Project Preferences
        3. Audio Device Preferences
        4. Audio Preferences
        5. MIDI Device Preferences
        6. Appearance Preferences
        7. Plug-Ins VST Preferences
        8. Control Surfaces Preferences
      2. Project Settings
    3. Visual Layout
      1. Visual Layout for Project Foundation and Recording
      2. Visual Layout for Tempo-Based Productions
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Track Templates
        1. Simple Track Templates
        2. Organizing Track Templates
        3. Track Templates with Folders
      2. Project Templates
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
      1. The REAPER Design Paradigm
      2. Organizing Your Shortcuts
      3. Introducing the Action List Editor
      4. Some Project Foundation Keyboard Assignments
      5. Exporting and Importing Actions
    6. Your Project Foundation Productivity Plan
  7. 3. REAPER Audio Recording Power
    1. REAPER Audio Recording Summary
      1. Pre-Recording
      2. Recording
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
      1. Recording Preferences
      2. Project Preferences
      3. Appearance Preferences
      4. Project Settings
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Input Monitoring
        1. Direct and Indirect Monitoring
        2. Using a Metronome
        3. Mixing for Input Monitoring
      2. Auto-Punch Recording
        1. Time Selection Auto-Punch Recording
        2. Auto-Punch Selected Items
        3. Tape Auto-Style Input Monitoring
      3. Recording Track Outputs
      4. Record Mode Monitor Only
      5. Recording Multiple Takes
      6. Free-Position Recording
      7. Recording with Multiple Formats
      8. Using the Metronome
      9. Cleaning Out Unwanted Items
      10. Collaborative Recording
        1. Collaboration with Other REAPER Users
        2. Collaboration with Users of Other DAWs
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
      1. Sample Keyboard Shortcut Assignments
      2. Sample Custom Action Assignments
      3. Assigning Actions to an External Device
    6. Your Audio Recording Productivity Plan
  8. 4. REAPER MIDI Recording Power
    1. Review of MIDI Recording Basics
      1. Pre-Recording
      2. Recording
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. MIDI Record Options
      2. Input Quantize Settings
      3. The Virtual MIDI Keyboard
      4. Using a Hardware Synthesizer for Output
      5. Using a Software Synthesizer
      6. Recording Input to a Different Channel
      7. Using a Multi-Output Software Synthesizer
      8. MIDI Recording Modes
      9. Recording Multiple Takes
      10. Auto-Punch Recording
      11. Recording MIDI as Audio
      12. Unified Tracks
      13. MIDI Track Templates
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    6. Your MIDI Recording Productivity Plan
  9. 5. REAPER Navigation and Selection Power
    1. Preferences Settings
      1. Appearance Theme Preferences
      2. Editing Behavior Preferences
        1. Edit Cursor Behavior
        2. Zoom Behavior
      3. Mouse Preferences
    2. Visual Layout
    3. Default Keyboard Shortcuts and Actions
      1. Navigation Basics
      2. Selection Basics
        1. Selecting Tracks
        2. Selecting Media Items
        3. Selecting Part of an Item
    4. Scaling
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    6. Your Navigating and Selection Productivity Plan
  10. 6. REAPER Project Construction Power
    1. Review of Project Building
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
      1. General Preferences
      2. Project Defaults
      3. Playback
      4. Appearance Media
      5. Appearance Theme
      6. Editing Behavior
      7. Media
      8. Project, Timeline, Grid, and Snap Settings
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Loop Sourcing
        1. Recorded Media Items
        2. Imported Media Items
        3. Move Items to Source Position
        4. Imported Cue Markers
        5. Manipulating Media Items
        6. Dynamically Split Items
        7. Using REX Files
      2. Loop Source Properties
      3. Quantize Item Position
      4. Locking Items
      5. Project Tempo and Time Signature Markers
      6. Project Play Rate
      7. The Pencil Tool
      8. Markers and Regions
        1. Markers
        2. Regions
        3. Managing Markers and Regions
      9. The Drums Tracks
      10. Lock Settings
      11. Ripple Editing
      12. Multiple Redo Paths
      13. Track Templates and Project Sample Files
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    6. Your Project Construction Productivity Plan
  11. 7. REAPER Editing Power
    1. Review of Item Editing Basics
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
      1. General Preferences
      2. Project Defaults Preferences
      3. Appearance Media Preferences
      4. Appearance Theme Preferences
      5. Editing Behavior Preferences
      6. Media Preferences
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Moving and Copying Items
      2. Item Properties
      3. The Item Volume Handle
      4. Item Settings
      5. Splitting, Healing, and Gluing
        1. Splitting
        2. Healing
        3. Gluing
      6. Muting and Deleting
      7. Grouping Items
      8. Fades and Trims
      9. Multi-Item Tracks and Multiple Takes
        1. Combining Items from Different Tracks
        2. Basic Take Management
        3. Advanced Take Management
      10. Project Item Locking
      11. Other Item Editing Commands
      12. The Filter Tracks Window
      13. Removing Silence with Dynamic Splitting
      14. External Editing
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    6. Your Item Editing Productivity Plan
  12. 8. REAPER MIDI Editing Power
    1. Review of MIDI Editing Basics
    2. Preferences and Settings
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Filtering MIDI Data
      2. Navigation and Note Selection
        1. Navigation
        2. Note Selection
      3. Creating, Editing, and Moving Notes
      4. Using Step Sequencers
      5. Modifying Notes and Note Properties
      6. Quantize
      7. Humanize Notes
      8. Options and View Options
        1. Options
        2. View Options
      9. Using the CC Lanes
      10. Changing Bank and Program Patches
      11. Text Events
      12. SysEx Messages
      13. Named Notes View
      14. Event List View
      15. Working with Item Copies
      16. The Inline MIDI Editor
      17. MIDI Files versus In-Project Events
      18. Exploding and Imploding MIDI Items
      19. Exporting Project MIDI
      20. MIDI Plug-Ins
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    6. Your MIDI Editing Productivity Plan
  13. 9. REAPER Audio and MIDI Routing Power
    1. Review of Basic Routing Concepts
      1. Submixes
      2. Auxiliary Buses
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Sends and Receives: Output Settings
      2. Wraparound Panning
      3. Feedback Routing and Cross-Panning
      4. Understanding Track Channels
      5. Multitrack Channel Routing
      6. Creating Channels on the Fly
      7. MIDI Routing
      8. MIDI Splitting and Routing
      9. Routing Imported MIDI Files
      10. Using Mixer View
      11. Drag-and-Drop Routing
      12. Track Templates
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    6. Your Routing and Channel-Splitting Productivity Plan
  14. 10. REAPER Mixing Power
    1. Review of Basic Mixing Concepts
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Approaches to Mixing
      2. Track and Folder Controls
      3. Reviewing Routing and Folders
      4. Reviewing Individual Tracks
      5. Creating Broad-Brush Mixes
        1. ReaConsole
        2. Multiple Redo Paths
        3. Track Grouping
        4. Managing the Mixer View
        5. The Track List Manager
        6. Mixer Snapshots
        7. Multiple Project Tabs
      6. Track and Item FX (Overview)
      7. The Master Track (Overview)
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
      1. Suggested PC Keyboard Assignments
      2. Suggested Control Device Assignments
    6. Your Mixing Essentials Productivity Plan
  15. 11. REAPER Audio FX Plug-In Power
    1. Review of Basic FX Plug-In Concepts
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
      1. General
      2. Plug-Ins
      3. Media
      4. Appearance Media
      5. Audio Buffering
      6. VST Plug-In Settings
      7. Audio Playback
      8. Project Settings
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. The REAPER Plug-Ins
        1. The Noise Gate—ReaGate
        2. The Compressor—ReaComp
        3. The Limiter—JS: LOSER/MGA_JSLimiter
        4. Equalization—ReaEQ
        5. Delay—ReaDelay
        6. Reverb—ReaVerbate and ReaVerb
        7. Pitch Manipulation—ReaPitch
        8. Pitch Correction—ReaTune
        9. Multipurpose Dynamics—ReaFir
        10. Noise Removal—Spectro
        11. Hardware Interface—ReaInsert
        12. JS Delay Plug-Ins
        13. JS Guitar Plug-Ins
        14. JS Filter Tools
        15. JS Liteon Plug-In Series
        16. JS Dynamic Enhancement Plug-Ins
        17. JS Analysis Tools
      2. Per-Item and Take FX Chains
      3. Parallel FX Processing
        1. Mirrored FX Chains
        2. Diverse FX Chains
        3. Channeled FX Chains
        4. Side-Chain Compression
        5. Side-Chain Gating
        6. Other Plug-Ins
      4. Views for Navigating and Managing Plug-Ins
        1. The Performance Meter
        2. The Mixer
      5. Organizing and Managing the Plug-Ins
        1. Using Standard Windows Techniques
        2. Plug-In Presets
        3. Plug-In Filters and Folders
        4. Copying FX between Projects
        5. Custom FX Chains
      6. Applying FX to Items
      7. From Multichannel to Multitrack
      8. Freeze and Unfreeze Macros
      9. Using Mixer Snapshots
      10. Showing FX Parameter Controls in the Mixer or TCP
      11. Using Multiple Redo Paths
      12. Track Templates
      13. Using a Control Surface with FX-Plug-Ins
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    6. Your Audio FX Productivity Plan
  16. 12. REAPER MIDI FX Plug-In Power
    1. Review of Basic MIDI and FX Plug-In Concepts
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Software Synthesizers
        1. ReaSamplOmatic5000
        2. ReaSynth
        3. The Liteon Series Plug-Ins
        4. Crystal Soft Synth
        5. ReaInsert
      2. The JS MIDI Plug-Ins
        1. Subtle Sound-Changing Plug-Ins
        2. Some Sound-Changing Plug-ins
        3. Information-Only Plug-Ins
        4. Automation Plug-Ins
      3. Cockos Plug-Ins
        1. ReaVocode
        2. ReaVoice
        3. ReaControlMIDI
      4. Parallel and Split Synthesizers
        1. Parallel Synthesizers
        2. Split Synthesizers
      5. Organizing and Managing the Plug-Ins
      6. Using Multiple Redo Paths
      7. Track Templates
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    6. Your MIDI FX Productivity Plan
  17. 13. REAPER Automation Power
    1. Review of Prerequisite Concepts
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
      1. Project Defaults Preferences
      2. Editing Behavior Preferences
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Automation Envelopes
        1. Creating Track Automation Envelopes
        2. Automation Modes
        3. The Envelope Toolbar Button
        4. Envelope Point Shapes
        5. FX and Send Envelopes
        6. Using a Control Surface
        7. Automatic Arming of Envelopes
        8. Per-Take Envelopes
        9. Managing and Editing Envelopes
        10. Managing Envelope Lanes
        11. FX Parameter Controls with Envelopes
        12. Global Automation Override
        13. Master Track Envelopes
        14. Locking Envelopes
      2. Parameter Modulation
        1. Simple Parameter Modulation
        2. Side-Chain Parameter Modulation
    5. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    6. Your Automation Essentials Productivity Plan
  18. 14. REAPER Project Completion Power
    1. Review of Basic Concepts
    2. Preferences and Project Settings
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Preparing Projects for Professional Mastering
      2. Using FX Plug-Ins on the Master Track
        1. EQ
        2. The Exciter
        3. Tape Saturation
        4. Stereo Enhancement
        5. The Multiband Compressor
        6. The Master Limiter
        7. Analysis Tools
      3. Master Track Characteristics and Features
        1. The Output Button
        2. The Master VU Meter
        3. Master Hardware Outputs and Track Channels
        4. Surround Mixing
      4. Mono and Stereo Project Rendering
      5. Rendering in Multichannel Format
        1. Simple Multichannel Rendering
        2. Rendering for 5.1 Surround Sound
      6. Saving Live Output to Disk
      7. Burning to Audio CD
    5. Project Templates
    6. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    7. Your Project Completion Productivity Plan
  19. 15. REAPER Software Integration Power
    1. Review of Basic Concepts
    2. Preferences and Setup Options
    3. Visual Layout
    4. Tools, Tips, and Techniques
      1. Using REAPER with ReWire
      2. Using REAPER with ReaRoute
        1. Setting Up Applications to Use ReaRoute
        2. Sending Audio from REAPER to the Other Application
        3. Sending Audio from Another Application to REAPER
      3. Using REAPER with NINJAM
    5. Track and Project Templates
    6. Custom Actions and Keyboard Shortcuts
    7. Your Software Integration Productivity Plan
  20. 16. REAPER Extra Power
    1. Color Themes and Color Customization
    2. Toolbar Customization
    3. Using Your PC Keyboard as a Control Surface
    4. Getting Further Help
    5. REAPER with Video