Custom actions creating, importing, exporting- Part of How to Reaper for the Blind

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Custom actions, how to make the darn things.

Note on my system: For this demo I used Reaper 6.34, and Voiceover on Big Sur on Mac.

What are custom actions anyways?

Custom actions is a way to string other actions together into one action. It’s as simple as that. It can however get as complicated as you need it to be. Think of it as a series of actions that you can start by using a single shortcut. It’s the ultimate productivity booster in Reaper.

To create some elaborate actions will take a fair bit of nerdy and luckily there are plenty of custom actions already created.
(These are called key-maps.)

Note that the difference between scripts and custom actions can sometimes feel a bit blurry. But for the time being, let’s just say that scripts you need to install while custom actions you create.
In this demo I am creating a simple custom action that set a few actions in motion to make my workflow faster. It’s really not complicated as long as you keep in mind Reaper’s context sensitivity.
Whatever Reaper has selected, whether it’s a track, multiple tracks, and item, or an item take, that is what Reaper will act on.
This is important when creating a custom action as the first action you add to a string of actions will need to match what you want it to do. As in any code, one faulty line will most likely break the entire program.

Note that this demo is created on a Mac. For this specific process, the procedure is similar enough to Windows that it should not pose any problems for you.
Remember: Use F4 and F12 for the action list and shortcut help respectively. These keys are your friends.

A note on demos and tutorials: Some of my demos are created quickly because someone needed a demonstration quickly or an answer to a question while in a bit of a panic. This means that production and editing can be minimal or non-existent. It also means that they don’t go into depth and do not cover all options or related issues.
For questions and demo requests, send me a note using the contact link up above.

If you love what I do and want to make sure i keep doing it, feel free to
Buy me a coffee!
Jenny K. Brennan

Reapack – Extending functionality with scripts – Finding, installing, adding shortcuts- Part of How to Reaper for the Blind

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Reapack – how to use the darn thing.

Note on my system: For this demo I used Reaper 6.34, and Voiceover on Big Sur on Mac.

What is Reapack anyways?

Reapack is an extention for Reaper. It is free and easy to install and use in order to extend Reapers capabilities. It will enable you to search for custom scripts that can do anything from automatically load up a sample player with your favorite kick and snare to slicing audio into itty bitty pieces for some cool EDM or Breakbeat detail. These scripts can truly do just about anything someone might come up with. If something can be accomplished that is not built in to Reaper’s standard action list, you can bet someone created a script for it. The Reapack depository is whe all those goodies are.

(How to install Reapack post – coming as soon as I’ve recorded the demo for it. )
Note that this demo is created on a Mac. For this specific process, the procedure is the same on Windows.
Remember: Use F4 and F12 for the action list and shortcut help respectively. These keys are your friends.

A note on demos and tutorials: Some of my demos are created quickly because someone needed a demonstration quickly or an answer to a question while in a bit of a panic. This means that production and editing can be minimal or non-existant. It also means that they don’t go into depth and do not cover all options or related issues. The demo below is one of those.

For questions and demo requests, send me a note using the contact link up above.

If you love what I do and want to make sure i keep doing it, feel free to
Buy me a coffee!
Jenny K. Brennan

Install Reaper, Osara, and SWS on Mac running Voiceover – Step by step

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How to install Reaper, Osara, and SWS on Mac running Voiceover.

Last updated: July 1, 2021 at 14:28 pm

If you find something incorrect throughout these instructions, please leave a comment or use the contact link at the top of this page.
Thanks. –

Downloads

Let’s grab all the stuff we need.

Download Reaper

For the latest Reaper application, visit the
Reaper.fm/download page.
Locate the macOS heading.
For MacOS earlier than Catalina or Big Sur, click on the first available download, macOS 64-bit.
(I do sincerely hope that your system is 64bit. Just saying’)
For Catalina and Big Sur, locate the download link that sounds something like:
macOS 10.15+ Catalina/Big Sur (Notarized)
And download that.

Download the Osara extension

Next, you need to download Osara by going to the Osara Reaper accessibility page
This page has all the information about Osara that you will ever need and the instructions you need to download and install Osara. I recommend doing some reading. If you are at all interested in what Osara is, what it does, and who created it and why, learn it all here.
Remember: Good people work really hard to make Reaper work for us and they keep this honestly very complicated extension alive and in constant development. I can’t speak enough about how impressive the Osara team is. Give them the credit they are due. “OSARA has taken countless hours of time to develop but is free to use.

Next, locate the
Osara snapshots link.
Once on that page, the easiest way to find the download is to search the page for the words: “for mac”. This will bring you directly to the download link for the current version of Osara.

One thing to remember is that Osara really is in constant development and this link changes frequently. It is a very good idea to keep Osara up to date. There are no notifications to let you know that there is a new version available. Chances are that if you update Reaper, Osara will not be far behind.

Download the SWS extension

This bundle of files can be downloaded from the
SWS extension page.
On this page, locate the “macOS” heading and select the
“DOWNLOAD X64” link

Downloads are done. Time to crack open your download folder with Command Option L and continue.

Installs

Installing the Reaper application

Open the Reaper disk image file you downloaded.
Copy the Reaper Application file.
Open applications with Shift Command A and paste with Command V.
Once the copying is done, go ahead and open the newly pasted Reaper application file with Command O.
This will take you through a standard Mac installation procedure which doesn’t present anything out of the ordinary and don’t need to be explained here.
Once the installation is done, Reaper should appear in your dock and you can open it from there.
If you have plugins installed on your system, this may take a while. Reaper will scan all the usual places and it won’t necessarily tell you what it’s doing. With some VO navigation you will hear that scanning is in progress, of something like it. Either way, it’ll be busy for a bit.
Once that is done, Reaper will ask you to select an audio device. This is a good time to do that so click the yes button to open the Reaper preferences.
You will land in a tree-view, which on the mac is called a table for some reason. You are focused on devices. Navigate into that with VO arrow keys and one of the very first options you find is the audio device selection list box. Pick your preferred device and select it with return. Now hit return again to okay your changes and close the preferences dialog.
Don’t worry, you will see much of those preferences in the future. For now, there’s nothing that needs to be done.
You can shut down Reaper for now.

There are a couple of things left to do. So get back to your downloads folder.

Installing the Osara extension

These instructions are taken directly from
the Osara Reaper accessibility page:

Because OSARA is an extension (not a standalone application) and also needs to install a key map, the installation process is a little different to most Mac applications. Please follow these instructions to install it:

Open the OSARA disk image file you downloaded.
Open the “Install OSARA.command” file. On macOS Catalina and later, you have to choose open from the context menu, accessed with VO+Shift+M.
Follow the instructions. If you wish to replace the existing key map with the OSARA key map (which is recommended), answer yes when prompted. A backup of your existing key map will be made in Reaper’s KeyMaps folder.
The installer leaves a terminal window open. It can be closed with Command+Q.
Press command+e to eject the disk image.

Note that if you do forget to use the context menu to open the terminal script, you will be informed that it cannot be opened. Simply click cancel in that prompt. It will not hurt anything. Once opening the script via the context menu, you will be informed again that there is a problem but this time you have the option to choose the “open” button. Do that, all is well.

Installing the SWS extension

Open the SWS disk image file you downloaded.
Select and Copy everything in that folder with Command A and Command C respectively.

Open Reaper and go to the options menu.
Locate: “Show Reaper resource path in explorer/finder” and hit return.
In the folder that opens, hit the letter “u” to locate the “user plugins” folder. Open it with Command O and press command V to paste

Close all stray windows, close any leftover disc image volumes with Command E, and restart Reaper.

Test your Reaper

Now let’s see if this works. There are two simple tests we can perform to check this.
First, let’s make sure Osara is running. Second, we will check that the sws extension is active and running as it should.

With Reaper newly opened, you are in an empty project with no tracks. When you move the up and down arrows, which are the shortcuts to move between tracks in Reaper, Osara should say: “No tracks.” Because there are no tracks and that is the infomation we need from Osara.
This means that Osara is doing its thing.
Success!
If you hear nothing when pressing the arrow keys, something has gone wrong somewhere and Osara is not running.

Assuming that Osara is running, we can move on to test the SWS extension.
Do this:
Create a new track with Command T.
In the dialog, give the track a name if you want and hit return. This track is for testing purposes only so it doesn’t matter.
Why are we doing this?
One of the many functions that sws performs for you is to enable you to change the volume of a track and let you know what happens as you do.
Using the shortcut Shift + Option and up or down arrows will change the track volume in 1db increments. It will also speak the volume as it changes.
If the spoken feedback does not change and it keeps saying 0db when you use the shortcut, then something has gone wrong and SWS is not running properly.
However, if the numbers do change as you change the volume with the shortcut, all is well with SWS.
Success!

Limited troubleshooting, final comments and useful resources

This post doesn’t cover any real troubleshooting. First of all, I’m not really qualified. Second, the list of things that could go wrong on a system working with audio is far beyond anything I could put together or even reference properly.
All I can recommend when something doesn’t seem to work is to restart Reaper, perhaps restarting your mac as that really doesn’t hurt to do once in a blue moon, and run the Osara and SWS installations again. Or maybe just reinstall Reaper. It’s quick enough to do and it won’t hurt anything.

If it still doesn’t work, I can recommend asking on the RWP (Reaper Without Peepers) mailing list.
You can join the list by sending an empty email to
rwp+subscribe@groups.io
Most questions can probably be answered by a visit to the
Reaper accessibility wiki page

A note of caution: The Reaper wiki can become a rabbit-hole difficult to escape. 🙂

Remember, have fun, don’t fear the reaper, and know that with Reaper and the Reaper community you are in good hands and the possibilities are endless.

Jenny K. Brennan
House of Imp Studio 2021

Crossing The Line – Vocal mix Demo [In the House of Imp Studio

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Crossing the Line

This song started as an instrumental  track on Kompoz by Bill Babcock with drums by Andrea Spaziale. The song was left untouched for a while. Until Rob Glass added bass. This is my mix and production with my somewhat unsolicited lyrics and vocals.

This mix will be up for live feedback on
Produce like a Pro with the following notes:
Update: After Bobby confirmed my feeling that the vocals were simply too overpowering, I pretty much worked them over completely and decided to thin down the synths to make room. I find it hard to balance these instruments and hesitate to use the mute button too much. However, since this was never meant to allow for vocals, I might be fighting a losing battle. I think I’m slowly getting to where I want it. I could spend even more endless hours on automation, but I might need a bit of distance to it first.
Mixed in Reaper.
Enjoy. And follow me on
SoundCloud, for more demos and mixes in progress.

Cheers!

JennyK
At the House of Imp Studio.

Logic Pro and Voiceover – How to. Track monitoring – understanding the settings

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Wrapping your head around the track monitoring in Logic – practical demonstration

Honestly, it’s a mindbend sometimes to understand why we hear things that we don’t want to hear, isn’t hearing what we do want to hear, and understanding how to control this behaviour makes for frustration free sessions. So let’s hear how it changes with the settings. It’s easy once grasping what Logic does.

Information:

Preferences I change:
Open the Logic preferences with Cmd + , (comma)
Go to toolbar, select “audio”
Exit the toolbar, now choose the “General” tab.
Navigate past the “Software monitoring” checkbox.
The checkbox of interest is called, “GarageBand requires the Input Monitoring button to be on, and the track to be either focused or record enabled.
It also says, “Input monitoring only for the focused track, and only when input monitoring is enabled (as in GarageBand)”
What confused me to start with was the simple wordiness of that checkbox and I’m wondering why it’s relevant to mention Garageband. Ever. 🙂

things to note:

There is some serious latency in this tutorial and it can be distracting. I will at some point redo it and clean up my rambling. Time permitting, that is.
If you have more information about the software monitoring, please comment on this page.

Produced by JennyK, using Apple Logic Pro version 10.4 on MacOs Mojave.

Keep in mind:


These tutorials assume you have basic skill with voiceover, the screenreader for Mac.
Specific keyboard commands may not always be specified as Logic users often use customized sets of commands, or create their own. To edit, add, or locate a key command, open the shortcut dialog with Option + K.
Questions, comments, suggestions? Add a comment.

JennyK Production and house of Imp, 2020, Jasper, Ontario.

For more tutorials and demos, visit
How to Logic.

Logic Pro and Voiceover – How to. Punching in, the basics.

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Punching in with voiceover in Apple Logic Pro

Let’s be honest, we all make mistakes. and rerecording an entire track that sounds great but for that pesky sour note or bad pronounciation can be such a bother. So let’s just punch it in. It’s easy.

Information:

Shortcuts I use are:
“Set punch in locator by playhead”
“Set punch out locator by playhead”
“Toggle auto punch mode on/off”

things to note:

My settings are:
Track toolbar >No overlapp.
The track has no take folder at the start of this tutorial.
These options may not change anything, but it is worth noting. I’m demonstrating a simple punch in and do not consider possible complications.

If you have more information about the punching in process, please comment on this page.

Produced by JennyK, using Apple Logic Pro version 10.4 on MacOs Mojave.

Keep in mind:


These tutorials assume you have basic skill with voiceover, the screenreader for Mac.
Specific keyboard commands may not always be specified as Logic users often use customized sets of commands, or create their own. To edit, add, or locate a key command, open the shortcut dialog with Option + K.
Questions, comments, suggestions? Add a comment.

JennyK Production and house of Imp, 2020, Jasper, Ontario.

For more tutorials and demos, visit
How to Logic.