Questions & Answers

Articulation Editor

+765 votes
asked Dec 13, 2015 in Completed Feature Requests by samirelborno (8,390 points)
recategorized Mar 11, 2021 by Fabian Kiesewetter


  • User can switch between articulations on a single track. Useful for Kontakt/ EW Play/ VSL VI PRO
  • When moving notes, articulations stay attached to notes
  • Alternative to users who like to compose in score order and don't like one articulation per track
  • Circumvent recording articulation related control data that is key switch notes into Events 
  • Easier transfer to a dedicated notation editor (Sibelius/ Finale/ Notion)
  • Easy way to unify articulation based workflow for different libraries and sample player

Use case 

  • User loads a track with i.e. Kontakt that holds a key switch instrument or multiple single instruments per midi channel, where a Kontakt 5 multi script allows the user to assign up to 64 of Kontakts’ midi channels to trigger them via Key Switch, Program Change or CC Message
  • User opens the Articulation Editor via key command or via the inspector in the Event Editor or Arrange View
    • Record notes and articulations in realtime 
    • Enable Step Input and use midi controller to input notes and articulations
    • Select notes in Event Editor, single click cell in Articulation Editor, draw notes or attach articulation to existing selected notes
  • Articulation rows follow playhead position and active articulation scrolls into view (1-127)
  • Articulation sets are stored per track with the Song and can be exported to folders and imported (iCloud/ Dropbox)
  • User can Set Note Color > By Articulation via the View menu, Notes will be colored according to users color setup or default color map
  • Articulation Editor note color map defaults to Velocity color map from 1-127 if Output Trigger is set to Program Change/ CC Message/ Articulation ID/ Key Switch, defaults to Note Channel color map from 1-16 if Output Trigger is set to Note Channel
  • Ideally articulation names will be shown on Piano Roll notes (depending on vertical zoom level)


  • Single click to select row; Shift click to select multiple rows 
  • Hit key on keyboard controller to set key switch note / iPad/ fader or rotary controller to set CC Message or Program Change value (Depending on Input Trigger type)
  • Setup which remote controller keyboard, iPad or other controller will be used via the preferences

The Panel you see is designed as a Note-FX inspector panel. It might make sense to have a floating plugin window for general settings or more advanced settings (like all existing Note-FX plugins)

56 Answers

+2 votes
answered Dec 1, 2020 by sunlove (4,260 points)

​What I'd like to see in the future too:

  • Option to move simultaneously the articulation with the note (like in Logic).

I don't see the benefit of having to move separately the articulation with the note.

+3 votes
answered Dec 10, 2020 by matfluor (540 points)

After using V3 with S1X (which grew incompatible) I'm happy to see this progress now!

I agree - a more developed Editor is necessary. See e.g. Reapers "Reaticulate" -the Keyswitches are edited in a Text editor, but after that it's a smooth experience. For a proper Keyswitch I would be happy to have (sorry for mentioning stuff again):

  • Multiple Notes to send - thinking of VSL's Synchron Player, where a Keyswitch can change function depending on the other Keyswitch used - e.g. sending C1+C2 for Staccato shorts, C#1+C2 For Regular longs
  • Sending CCs, Program Changes
  • Sending Velocity with the Key - so an Articulation can be selected by Velocity (e.g. C1/48 -> Stacc, C1/60 Spiccato etc)
  • Combining them - less direct use case but good to have
  • Channel switching (MIDI Channel 1 Staccato and Channel 2 Spiccato for example)
  • Keyswitch "nudge" setting - so if you insert a KS on grid, it automatically plays it Xms ahead
  • Keyswitch "glued" to note, so when you move the note, the KS moves with it (optionally that is)
  • Grouping, maybe as small Menu with arrow - so one can group their Articulations in a logical manner and have a context menu with more depth compared to now
Great work team! Now on to the details ;-)
+1 vote
answered Dec 19, 2020 by serjav (220 points)
Hello! I want to express my deep gratitude to the developers. Thank you for listening to us. I also ask you to pay attention to the fact that there are people who are more comfortable using alternative ways of switching articulations. First of all I'm talking about (Program Change). This greatly saves resources, including the ability to completely download and upload patches to the (Instrument Bank). That is, use only the necessary set of patches at this stage and freely rotate them within the same project and template. Cakewalk by Bandlab does a pretty good job at this stage. I can create groups (it works like a folder) of articulations (Long, Short, FX) And inside them add and remove whatever I need. And 127 patches are enough for this!

Even if it is impossible at the program level from one track to send signals to different midi channels. This method bypasses this limitation.

I apologize if I did not put it right. The language barrier does its job)

Thanks a lot and good luck!
0 votes
answered Jan 1, 2021 by Mikayy (2,810 points)
It's cool that Studio One now has a basic key switch editor.
Now it would be cool if it would support  key switches like Vienna's Synchron Player. For instance, Vienna Synchron Strings Pro has a lot of articulations that have to be sent in succession. This means C6 is a different key switch depending on which other key switch preceded this key switch. There is basically a hierarchy of key switches.
0 votes
answered Jul 7, 2022 by scoredfilms (6,810 points)

PreSonus, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE ignore your users here. Apple, McDonald's, Google... they all understand that users aren't designers. Clay Christensen taught them this with the Milk Shake paradigm. It's about the "job to do".

StaffPad proves that Dorico's complex articulation mapping features are like Notion's rules... composers complain about Dorico constantly for the same reason Notion gets flack. StaffPad doesn't force users to map ****. Users don't need more ways to configure. We need to use. The fewer barriers to that goal, the closer you are to getting it right. Even Infinite Brass, despite not sounding 100% real to most people, has led many to leaving Spitfire because the library doesn't even use key switches. The instrument is smart enough that it doesn't need to. The best paradigm is that, whichever way you go... you aren't putting setup complexity on users.

Studio One's maps are good enough that any Spitfire or Orchestral Tools (the two most popular high-end libraries) can be mapped adequately in S1. That's good enough to wait until the industry matures. A composer's "job" is NEVER to configure. It's to open up Studio One and start writing music. Please don't complicate the program's front end, rules, XML, etc. Make the engine smart enough that we never need to think about that.

1) Studio One already has an in-app sample store. Why not partner with companies the way StaffPad did?

2) Studio One could implement the VST3 ability to auto-map samples. No editor windows. No dialogs. Just open S1 and write music.

3) If I still haven't convinced you, please realize that Cubase got this horribly wrong. Google how many complaints, for over a decade, are online about expression mapping taking enormous amounts of time, once? NO, every time someone buys a new library.


P.S. I have no stake in this. I write in StaffPad, master in Studio One. But having spent years in this mess, and finding relief in a different app... I am never looking back to the DAW to write music, just master it. Why? Because an app that had the "just open it and write" paradigm was good enough that I didn't want to look back. If Studio One gets this right, really right, then maybe I'd have a reason to write in S1 again.

0 votes
answered Mar 4 by MarciaFunebre (770 points)
Instead of articulation switching triggered by moment in time it would be nice to have it by note instead. This way you could have two notes simultaneously playing two different articulations (See Logic Pro).
Also: add capability for negative track delay that can be configured individually for each articulation.