Q: It’s Not Making Any Sound
You’ve added sounds, but you can’t play anything... There are a few things you can check here.
Q: Are the speakers on and plugged in? (Sorry, management made us ask.)
Can you play a Wave file through Windows sndrec32.exe or another sound application? If you can't there may be a problem with your sound card's configuration or drivers. Refer to your soundcard documentation to try to figure out what is wrong.
Load the volume control that came with your soundcard and make sure that the Wave device is turned up.
Another program may be using the Wave device. Mixcraft will put up a dialog stating that another application has the Wave device in this case.
Playback Is Stopping Too Soon!
If you are trying to play sounds in Beatcraft and it seems to cut off too soon or it may have some other strange behavior, you should make sure that you have the latest drivers for your sound card. Download the latest drivers from your soundcard manufacturer’s website!
Q: Sound Is Breaking Up / Popping Or Clicking / Lagging
If it sounds like someone is starting and stopping the sound real quick, repeatedly, it could be because the computer has slowed down due to other programs running at the same time.
Beatcraft has to work harder as the layers of sound increase. Try increasing the buffer size or the number of buffers in the Advanced Section of the Preferences Playback tab.
Additionally, you may choose to reduce the # of effects that you are using during playback. Go ahead and mute the effects. You can always turn them back on later. (Effects use significant CPU power.)
Another trick is to reduce the number of instruments. Each instrument has its own separate mix down which costs in terms of your computer’s memory and CPU power. If you don’t need sounds to be separate tracks, try and put them on as few tracks as possible.
Q: Sometimes when I make changes to a pattern during playback, I don't hear them right away. Why not?
To provide smooth playback, Beatcraft is often mixing audio data ahead of what you are hearing from your speakers. This 'latency' can be reduced by selecting smaller and fewer audio buffers in the Preferences. To change the buffer size, select File->Preferences, and select the 'Playback' tab. Note that if your buffers are too small, you may hear gapping in your audio playback.
Q: Can I use my own sounds in Beatcraft? What about sounds from a sample CD?
Any compatible .WAV, .MP3, .WMA, or .OGG sound file can be used by Beatcraft as an instrument sample. There are two easy ways to load your own sounds. 1) Double click on a track to open the 'Open An Audio File' dialog. Use this dialog to locate and select the audio file you wish to use. 2) Use the Explorer pane of Beatcraft to locate the audio file you wish to use, then drag that file from the Explorer onto a track.
Q: Why won't Beatcraft play my audio file or use it as a drum track?
Certain audio files may be incompatible with Beatcraft. WMA files with Digital Rights Management protection cannot be used by Beatcraft. Also, WAV files that use certain forms of encoding or compression, such an uLaw or ADPCM, may not be compatible. Finally, corrupt or damaged files may be unreadable, or only partly readable, by Beatcraft.
Q: Does Beatcraft support MIDI? Why won't Beatcraft load my MIDI file?
Beatcraft does not currently support MIDI in any capacity.
Q: I'm getting the message "WMCreateSyncReader could not be located in the dynamic link library WMVCore.DLL."
If you are getting this message when starting Beatcraft, it means you need to install WMA support. You can download the WMA support plug in here.
IMPORTANT: If you have a brand new install of WinXP SP2, you may need to run this additional patch program wma-sp2-fix.exe in order to use WMA properly with the drum machine software.
Q: Does Beatcraft support triplets?
Yes! Unlike many drum machines, hardware and software, Beatcraft supports triplets. In fact, not only does Beatcraft support triplets, but it supports both 8th note and 16th note triplets. An 8th note triplet turns an entire beat into a triplet, whereas a 16th note triplet will turn half of a beat into a triplet. To create a triplet, click on the triplet icon in the Pattern Editor. Your cursor will turn into a triplet graphic. Simply place this graphic onto the steps that you would like turned into a triplet, make sure they're highlighted, and click the mouse again. Your step buttons will become smaller, connected step buttons indicating a triplet. In the center of the connection line will be a small 'X'. Clicking this 'X' will erase the triplet.
Q: How do I reverse a drum sound?
Turn on a Step Button in the Pattern Editor. Then, select the Advanced Step Controls dialog by pressing the little arrow at the bottom of the Step Button. Click the 'Reverse Sound' option checkbox, and the sound will be played in reverse.
Q: I would like to choke a sound, such as a cymbal, cutting it off before it completes. Can I do this in Beatcraft?
Yes! At the point where you would like to choke the sound, turn on a step. select the Advanced Step Controls dialog by pressing the little arrow at the bottom of the Step Button. Then, select the 'Choke Previous Sounds' option. Finally, set the volume of the new step to zero, so that no new audio is produced.
Q: I don't like having to click twice to get a step's volume at 100%! Is there any way to change this?
Yes. Beatcraft's volumes are user adjustable, with up to four programmable volume stages. From the Main Menu, select File->Preferences, and select the Miscellaneous tab. Look at the Step Volume Levels section. By default, Beatcraft's first step volume is 60%, followed by 100%. If, for example, you only want 100%, you can set Level 1 to 100% and turn off Level 2.
Q: Do I always have to play a sequence back from the beginning?
No! There are three Play buttons in the Sequencer pane. The first play button will play the sequence from the very beginning. The second play button will play the sequence starting at the current 'caret' position. To set the caret, click anywhere on the sequencer track. A black line with two small triangles will appear, representing the caret. The caret can be placed on any beat in the sequence. The third playback option will begin playback from the green 'loop start' sequencer flag. This flag can be placed anywhere in the sequence, as long as it is to the left of the red 'loop stop' sequencer flag.
Q: I'm new at beat creation. Where can I find pre-made patterns to use with Beatcraft?
Beatcraft includes several terrific Templates, which include a lot of pre-made patterns that you can mix, match, and edit to create your own track. To load these templates, select File->Open Song Template from the Main Menu.
Q: Can I use loops I've created in Beatcraft in other programs?
Sure! Beatcraft will export loops in WAV, WMA, MP3, and OGG formats. Any loop-based music program should be able to load these loops and use them.
Q: I made an MP3 loop but it won't loop properly in my other software!
MP3 is not a good format to use for looping, because MP3 files contain an unspecified amount of silence at the start and end of the file. To achieve a useable loop, use WAV, WMA, or OGG formats.
Q: Does Beatcraft support DirectX or VST effects?
No, not at the present time. However, Beatcraft contains its own library of excellent effects.
Q: Uninstalling Help
To uninstall, click the Start button, followed by "Program Files" followed by "Acoustica Mixcraft" followed by "Uninstall". Click Next a few times and it will uninstall Mixcraft.
To uninstall the shared effects, do not use the Add/Remove Programs option. (On some computers, it is possible that this would delete or uninstall many files under Program Files.)
The safe way to remove the shared effects is to delete the following files and folders.
C:\Program Files\Acoustica Shared Effects\
This uninstall for the shared effects will be fixed in a future version.