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Instantly convert audio to MIDI in REAPER

March 24, 2024

Converting audio into MIDI in REAPER is very simple! 🤩

In this video, I will go over three methods that you can use and how to solve some issues you may encounter along the way. At the end of this video, I show a way to perform all of the things learned in just one click, which is my favorite thing!

📹 Watch

🤖 Custom Action

In the video above, I go over a custom action that allows you to instantly convert any audio item in your session to MIDI. This custom action essentially takes the item, applies an FX chain, and returns it in MIDI form.

I recommend watching the video above where I explain each of these steps and how you can customize them according to your needs.

I also cover a very important step that you need to complete to access the 6th action on this list.

You will also need the SWS extension for this to work.

Here’s the custom action

  • SWS: Pitch all takes up one octave
  • SWS: Select only track(s) with selected item(s)
  • Track: Insert new track
  • Item edit: Move items/envelope points down one track/a bit
  • SWS: Select only track(s) with selected item(s)
  • Insert FX chain: Misc/Audio to MIDI**
  • Item properties: Normalize items to +0dB peak
  • Item: Apply track/take FX to items (MIDI output)
  • SWS/S&M: Clear FX chain for selected items, all takes
  • SWS: Select only track(s) with selected item(s)
  • Take: Switch items to previous take
  • Item properties: Reset item pitch
  • Item properties: Reset item take gain to +0dB (un-normalize)
  • Take: Switch items to next take
  • Item edit: Move items/envelope points up one track/a bit
  • Edit: Delete notes of less than 1/32 note in length in selected MIDI items
  • SWS/FNG: Transpose selected MIDI items down an octave
    Track: Remove tracks

** For this action to show up in your actions list, you need to go to your FX browser, find the FX chain section in the left column, and right-click on your Audio to MIDI FX chain to create a shortcut. Use any shortcut; it doesn’t matter. Once it has a shortcut, it will show up in your actions list and can be used as a step in your custom action.

You can also download the custom action directly in here → LINK (Note that you will need to add the 6th action yourself with your own audio to midi FX chain)

That’s it!

This ReaTune method is my go-to, and it's perfect for monophonic stuff. Since it can be turned into an instant custom action, it feels frictionless, and most times it gives me a very solid starting point. However, there are times when I need more advanced stuff.

Here's what I suggest:
• For polyphonic/bending, use NeuralNote. This is a free VST.
• For transients/drums, use MK Slicer. This is an incredible REAPER script that can do transients to MIDI really well (and many more things! I might make a full video on this).

Thank you for watching ✨

Hai there!

I'm Alejandro, and I created this ad-free page to give you the best experience learning REAPER.

If you find my work helpful, please consider buying me a coffee. That'd help me cover the costs of this site and gives me more time to create free resources.

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