(8 replies, posted in TranzPort:User Forum)

hmmmm...., when this occurs and you go back to look at your Sonar Control Surface settings, is the TranzPort still listed correctly in all three boxes? ie it should say "TranzPort" for Type, In, and Out.

What is your ACT controller and how is it configured in the setup?


Hi Domenico,

I am very curious about the MIDI Port assignments that you mention. You have tried the AlphaTrack's MIDI ports to be either 'Windows MIDI' , or 'Direct Music'.

On the "MIDI Port Setup' panel it should set it to Windows MIDI with Timestamping turned off, like your original settings. When you then check the AlphaTrack's own MIDI In/Out port assignments they should both be set to itself (AlphaTrack).

Also, check any MIDI tracks that you have in your project and make sure none of them accidentally have the AlphaTrack selected as an input or output port.



(6 replies, posted in TranzPort:User Forum)

Hi Stratcat,

see your other post for a detailed reply, but I don't think so in your case. That is a bit of a different scenario.



(8 replies, posted in TranzPort:User Forum)

Hi Stratcat,

Is there any chance that your ACT device, or any other MIDI device wasn't connected when you first launched SONAR?

With SONAR in particular it is VERY important to be sure all of your MIDI devices are connected and turned on before you launch the app. If you reach over and flip on a keyboard while you're working then poof, all your port settings get tossed.

I haven't seen any cases caused by other wireless gear but I can't say for sure it can't happen. Because the computer, and SONAR, only know about the TranzPort's USB interface. They don't know anything about the wireless aspect of it. That is only between the interface and the TranzPort remote itself. Even if something interrupts the radio signal (say you're standing next to the microwave while making popcorn) it should haven't any affect on SONAR's settings. When the interruption goes away then the TranzPort should work normally again.


Ah, ok. None of that was changed at all in the recent updates. Actually that Bar/Beat display is just reading data that Cubase is already generating. We aren't really asking it to do any extra work.

But if disconnecting the AT seems to cure your problem then it sounds like maybe there is some other setting that is causing excess MIDI load with the AlphaTrack in your case.

You might try resetting all MIDI drivers from the MIDI Port Setup. Also, if you have timestamping enabled at the bottom of that page it might bog things down. Timestamping adds a lot of MIDI overhead. Check that AlphaTrack In is NOT enabled as an "All Inputs" device too.

Let us know if any of this helps or not.



(6 replies, posted in TranzPort:User Forum)

Unfortunately the TranzPort doesn't have any way to force a particular channel, or display which one it is on. It is actually designed to automatically identify any other devices that follow the 2.4Ghz spec, such as bluetooth devices, and change channels to avoid conflicts. For instance, we can run multiple TranzPorts in a busy tradeshow floor with hundreds of 2.4Ghz products around, and not be bothered by them. The trouble is that some manufacturers, and particularly some older products, don't adhere to the spec properly. They simply use as much of the bandwidth as they need and don't identify themselves. This means devices like TranzPort then don't know how to avoid them.

We have seen this with some 2.4Ghz home style cordless phones, some brands of wireless headphones, and even products that you would think should have been ok. They just didn't anticipate the user having other 2.4Ghz products in the same environment.

If your video unit has only 4 channel options, it may be that they have created their own channel methods that only work with their own products. They wouldn't be alone by doing that, it is just frustrating in todays wireless world.


Hello Domenico,

I'm not sure what you mean by the "Timecode" reference in the new AlphaTrack plug-in. We didn't add, or make any changes with regards to timecode display or synchronization.  The update should only affect how the Solo, Mute, Rec Arm function update for the AlphaTrack itself.

If you remove AT from your Device Setup does this symptom still occur? If so then it must be caused by something else.

Tell us about this timecode thing and we'll see if we can find any link to our plug-in work.



(6 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

If AlphaTrack is showing up as a MIDI port but isn't appearing in the Driver list then the Plug-In just isn't being seen. If you are certain that the plug-in is in the correct location, and the AlphaTrack is otherwise being seen by the computer ok (the AlphaTrack Manager says "Available"), than this sounds like an old but rare problem we saw on a few previous occasions where DP users updated to 5.12 or 5.13 and the AlphaTrack mysteriously disappeared. We have not seen this occur with DP 6 at all yet. After a good bit of research what we found was that for some reason a sub-file called PkgInfo was inexplicably missing from the AlphaTrackDPUB control plug-in file. It only occurred in the initial user account and creating a new Mac user account started it working again. However, creating a new account means reauthorizing all of your plug-ins and that's no fun.

To check, go to 'Mac drive'/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/MOTU Control Surface and  CTRL+Click on the AlphaTrackDPUB file. Select "Show Package  Contents". You should see severl items including a file called PkgInfo.

If it appears to be missing email support@frontierdesign.com and ask for the DP Plug-In pkgInfo fix. Unzip the 'PkgInfo' file that is sent to you and place it in this same Contents folder. Restart and see what happens. You should be in business.


ps. Thanks again for helping out James.


(6 replies, posted in TranzPort:User Forum)

Hello peterle,

Actually I'm guessing the TranzPort uses a much narrower band then the video transmitter. The TranzPort uses just 1 of over 30  possible channels in the current 2.4GHz channel spec. This would also explain the why the video is more affected by the TranzPort than visa-versa. The Video is probably seeing all of TranzPort's data traffic where-as the TranzPort may only be seeing a small fraction the video data.

While there may be no way to separate them entirely, by forcing a rebind you may be able to move TranzPort to a channel  where it is less of a problem.  Press Shift+Battery and then immediately press the link button on the USB interface. This will cause both pieces to scan the channels and rebind. Hopefully at a new channel, away from the video unit.



(1 replies, posted in TranzPort:User Forum)

Hello RRuskin,

unfortunately no. We can't seem to access the HD24's own internal locator markers, or its In/Out points via MMC.  I think Alesis may have originally anticipated other ways of handling this with the remote they were going to develop but never did.



(7 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

It may make a very short, and hopefully faint, zipper sound as it decelerates in the last few mms. If you hold Shift+Stop and touch the right-hand encoder it will display its firmware version on the left side of the LCD. What version do you have?



(3 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Hello psi777 (that's a lot of psi!)

Thanks for the input. And we will enter your feature requests into our system. Sounds like we will need to review how many of the new SONAR 8 features have made it into their external control code yet. It doesn't usually happen all at once.




(1 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Hello Acousticplayer,

AlphaTrack requires at least Reason 3.04 to work properly. You can fine the setup doc on our website at:

http://frontierdesign.com/download/pdf/ … aTrack.pdf

I'm not certain what kind of performance you might get with earlier versions.



(6 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Hello Middleman,

For SONAR users this is the "Read Me" file that is included with the recently posted 32-bit SONAR plug-in.


Hello dr. oetker,

Fair question, but not at this time. Microsoft is far from locking down this release and after getting burned with multiple last minute Vista changes I think you are going to find far fewer manufacturers willing to take that leap of faith this early in the development cycle. It takes valuable time and money to build drivers properly. You really hate to through that away.
It's a simple case of the old "fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me".

Microsoft has tossed the beta copy out there to build excitement in their product, which will ship sometime in the unknown future. That's fine. But in the mean time they are also fishing for problems.  This is a good thing too. But there will certainly be changes.

I hope you understand.



(7 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Hello Tom,

can you tell us a bit more about your configuration? What DAW app are you using? Can I assume it is chasing some previous automation at the time? Is there a resolution or other settings for automation in the app you are using?

Tell us what you can and we'll try to help.



(9 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Also, try running the calibration routing on your AlphaTrack and let us know if it affects the symptom at all.

Shift+Stop+F4 and release.




(9 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Hello Yayomorales,

I have been playing with this one a little bit over the last few days and haven't been able to reproduce it yet. I suspect that the AlphaTrack is getting caught in some weird state just as DP quits but I'm not certain what it is yet. I doubt that there is an actual problem with your AlphaTrack itself.  I will keep trying to make it happen here but in the mean time, if you notice any clues or settings that might help me create it, please do let me know. Particularly your Automation Setup settings for the selected track when you quit DP.




(9 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Hi  Andrew,

You actually may not have the Solo latency issue in v3 at all. If I recall properly, that was the result of a change in v4.

Try it and let us know.


Hello cormacokane,

Well, we'll keep checking. It would be nice. Steinberg periodically makes updates to their external control code. Currently I don't believe we have access to anything other than the first mixer.



(9 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Hmm... this should work. Do you have the v3.02 update for Cubase/Nuendo? The knobs work ok in other modes?

If you have no luck than try plug-in version 1.04. You can find it at:

http://frontierdesign.com/Products/Alph … loads/Prev

It may be that it works better with your older version of software, but I am not aware of any problems.



(3 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Understood and noted. And we do appreciate the suggestions coming in. It can be a tricky balancing act to try and make the most of each DAWs controllable features. Each user has certain things they would like to see that are a little different than the next. Or particular features that they use more than others. And some things, like EQ control, can only be accessed through special code that isn't in the normal "User Programmable" list. So it all quickly becomes a puzzle that can never really be solved perfectly. But with a few compromises we try to get close.




(6 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

Hello awagner08,

Yes, you are right, there is a special trick to do this. We will be posting those instructions on our downloads page very soon. In the meantime, if you send an email to support@frontierdesign.com then someone will reply with the necessary file and instructions directly to you.



(0 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

jpoprock wrote:

Hello all! I'm really really interested in buying the Alphatrack. I've researched it along with all the other choices, and think that for the money and what I need, it will be perfect. I'm a Pro Tools LE 7.4 user.

I saw this post in another forum, that outlined some "problems" with the AT, but the post was written back in Sept '07. These problems sound like somewhat a of a big deal, but maybe not. I'm kind of having a hard time fully understanding what exactly he is saying. I would understand if i could SEE what he's talking about, but for now, I'm not fully "gettin' it". Here are the issues this dude described:

"Scrub bar is set by nudge value:
Their cute little scrubby ribbon strip is set as a percentage of your nudge value. If you are like most serious editors, you like your nudge to be about 10 ms. At that setting the ribbon strip control creeps along and is useless for horizontal scrolling. The jump-to-markers by tapping feature is nice though... but I can use my ".1., .2., .3., etc." key shortcut for that. (Thats decimal + Num + decimal on the numeric pad). The scrub bar also affects window view, controlling both your view and the timeline simultaneously which is related to my next peeve.

Track-Select scrolls your window view:
Let me clarify something. Selecting a track and selecting your window view are two completely separate user controls. But on the Alphatrack they appear to be married. Consequences... let's say for example you're mixing and you have limited window space. You have your mix window open with tracks aligned left to right (kik, snr, HH, Tom 1, Tom 2, ..... bass, gits, vox, etc.). When you select Kik with A.T. it appears in your window far left. Now when you select snare (if your horizontal scroll bar below is active, i.e. you have tracks to the right of your screen), your view shifts and Kik is bumped off screen to left. Now you can't view Kik and Snr together! This effect is 10 x more annoying in the edit window. Your looking at a track, then you click (ctrl + shft + click) up above to go to another track and all of your tracks realign themselves in the window and you have to glance around to find what you were just looking at. Unlivable, IMHO. There should be a separate window scrolling control on A.T. perhaps.

Want to adjust your plugin EQs with the little knobs? Forget it. Knobs are too finely adjusted.
I did a quick test. It took me 6 complete revolutions of the knob to move the gain setting in my Ren Eq from -18db to +18db. On a mouse this is one click and drag or click and swipe. Don't forget, each revolution took 3 separate twists of my wrist... about 18 physical movements to slide the eq point from top to bottom. Like pedaling downhill in 10th gear.

You have to take your hand of the Alpha track to select tracks that aren't adjacent!
How often do you really mix by going from one track to the next? You don't. You select a track here and there and adjust according to need. I thought I would just be able to click on a track and slide. Wrong. You have to ctr + shft + click to activate a track. So your A.T. hand has to move to the keyboard every time. I programmed my mouse for a shortcut combo click to solve the problem, but the A.T. was not responsive in real time and I experienced long delays before pro tools would hear the fader. This was pronounced during playback."


Then he said someone from AT responded to him about his "problems":

I chatted with a tech guy from Frontier Designs. Below are his replies. As mentioned by earlier, a lot is determined by the digi HUI. None of my preference settings fixed anything however. I'll be keeping the unit, but only for the the fader, panning and a couple of the btns which are actually nice to have around.

Re: Scrub bar is set by nudge value:

F.D. "The reason for its relationship to the nudge value is that this is the only HUI accessible value that lets the user customize scrub resolution."

Okay not F.D. fault. Still makes scrubbing worthless if you are editing a session and want to use small nudge values.

Re: Track-Select scrolls your window view:

F.D. "This is actually determined by your own user settings in Pro Tools Preferences and not AlphaTrack. See Pro Tools Preferences/Display/Edit Window Follows Bank Selection, and, Mix Window Follows Bank Selection."

I tried this, and when these preferences were changed to prevent scrolling, Ctrl + Shift + click no longer worked for selecting tracks. Try it. So you still have live with window scrolling issue. My work around = make your mix window super wide to include all tracks and in edit view, get used to your selected track becoming the top one on screen.

Re: Adjusting plugin settings with knobs:

F.D. "encoder resolution is determined by the HUI protocol"

So. Okay again... not F.D. fault. Still, it happens to be worthless with my set up (Ren EQ, PT and Alphatrack) for reasons originally mentioned.

Re: You have to take your hand of the Alpha track to select tracks that aren't adjacent:

F.D. "The shift + ctr + click function is another HUI setting".

I could not find a work-around. I'm resigned to lifting the left hand every time to select a new track. I don't like using the knob method for this. Arrows are very cool for selecting adjacent tracks.


Ok.. so now MY questions!

So, is this guy saying that if using Pro Tools, in order to get a value to go from -18db to +18db, I'm going to have to turn the knob like three full revolutions?? That seems extreme. You CAN grab a virtual knob with a mouse and fix it quicker than you can do three revolutions!

And this thing with Track-Select Scrolls Window View... I'd have to see it to know what he's talking about.. and how or if it would apply to me at all. I don't get it, but whatever it is, it seems like a royal pain huh? How can I say that if I don't know what he's even talking about? Well... I dunno. HA!! But FD says it's a PTLE setting, and this guy says that he tried what FD suggested, and it didn't work. So... has this been fixed in an update? Or is this guy a moron?

Same for the issue with taking your hand off the AT to select adjacent tracks... Is it true?

I don't think it's fair to assume that the AT will perform like a Digi Command 8 or a Mackie Control Univ simple due to the feature set. In fact, the MCU is a HUI device no? There are a lot of guys that use it with PT and seem thrilled. If HUI is so bad, as this guy indicates, making the AT somewhat useless, then why are so many others happy with HUI and PT?

I'm not sure if the Faderport is a HUI device. I think anything that isn't made by Digi is pretty much HUI. Unless I have it backwards. But if this is true... then it would seem that all the things that AT offers minus the powered fader issue of the Faderport, are pretty much not all that usable if you're using Pro Tools. If using these extra features like the scroll strip, knobs, etc, are a pain in PT, then why would I want to buy one and spend $50 more for it, when the Faderport pretty much leaves off all the controls that don't work well with PT anyway, and charges $50 less?

To make it clear, I'm NOT complaining about price. I have no issue with anything like that. In fact, I have no issues at all! I'm simply trying to make the right choice as to which product will better serve me. For the record, I typically only deal with 12 tracks max. I do use a fair amount of plugins sometimes, but not excessive. I'm a songwriter using PTLE to record my ideas and songs. Thats it. And using the mouse/keyboard is tiresome and makes me not even want to bother with recording. I'm trying to make my experience more like it used to be in the good old days of Faders and knobs. I know that I can't get RID of the mouse and keyboard with the AT, but I can certainly cut down on the tediousness of it all.

So any advice you can offer would be great.



CS:Phew ..... I need to rest my brain after that. :)

Ok, where to begin?

First, yes, all controllers that are not manufactured by Digidesign must use HUI protocol to control ProTools. Its a shame but that's the Digi-law. HUI protocol is limited, but manufacturers can use it however best suites there hardware design or needs. So just because one product or another supports HUI protocol certainly doesn't mean they necessarily use it in the same way.

Feel free to download and read the complete ProTools Guide for AlphaTrack from our website

Now I'll try to address a few of these issues specifically.

"Scrub bar is set by nudge value:". Yup, the scroll strip resolution at the bottom is linked to the nudge value. That isn't going to be perfect for everyone, maybe particularly film editors, that want to jog by sub-frame and still be able to shuttle quickly around in a coarse fashion as your poster seems to be. But at least the user can choose the 1 best resolution for their needs. Thats what we have on this tool (maybe if we had 2 scroll strips?). Jumping to markers with the strip is very quick. And I dare say its fewer moves than typing ' . , # , . ' every time on the keyboard. But that's just me.

"Track-Select scrolls your window view:". This can be set individually for the Edit and Mixer windows in PT Preferences. But the poster's statement is a bit misleading. Even with scrolling enabled in PT, AlphaTrack does NOT always force the selected track to be on the left side of the screen. It will only scroll if the track you are going to is off the display entirely. If your entire mixer fits on your screen it will never scroll. I'm not sure what is meant by the "track and window select are married" comment but maybe the poster wasn't all together familiar with the options that were available. Maybe just having a bad day.

And the Shift+CTRL+Click to select track function works fine on my machine even with scrolling turned off. So I'm not sure what was happening on the poster's system there either. And a related note!!! - The AlphaTrack also lets your quickly scroll through tracks with an encoder as well. You don't have to click a button many times to get around.

"Knobs are too finely adjusted.".  This depends on the plug-in that you are using. Using EQ mode on AlphaTrack with Digi's EQIII's for example, it takes less than 1 complete revolution to go from one Gain extreme to the other. We added a press+turn feature for fine control. I am not familiar with the Ren EQ mentioned so I can't comment on that specifically, but all plug-ins are not created equal. But many users are making fine adjustments rather then extreme value sweeps, so I think it works well.

"You have to take your hand of the Alpha track to select tracks that aren't adjacent!". Huh? AlphaTrack provides 2 ways of selecting tracks from its surface. There are dedicated track up/down buttons for reaching adjacent tracks. Or, as mentioned above, you can also use an encoder to quickly navigate.

As you mentioned, AlphaTrack isn't meant to compete with a Control24 but it does do a good job of helping out with common tasks. I hope this helps explain some of these issues. Please read the linked document as well, or post again if you have specific questions.

I also encourage any other AlphaTrack/PT users out there to toss in their own 2-cents worth, good or bad.


jpoprock wrote:

Thanks for that clarification! It seems that for me personally, I shouldn't have a big problem since almost always, all my tracks fit on the screen. If I can use the AT to scroll from track 1 to track 6, make an adjustment, then go back to track 1 pretty quickly, then that would be just fine. What tends to wear me out, is if I am listening to a track, and need to solo track 2 and 3, like if I'm doing a doubled vocal, and then toggle one on and off or the other, when comparing them. Then I have to click to unsolo them, use my mouse to set the transport back to wherever so I can punch in, forget to turn the pre/post roll off, use my mouse to enable that (or keyboard command), zoom back in, etc. I get really tired of zooming in and out, keeping track of what is solo'd or muted, etc.

I know there are key commands for almost anything, but it's hard to remember them. I have memorized certain ones though. Perhaps I need to memorize more? But zooming in and out all the time wears me out, esp if my punch in has a "pop", which it almost does. Then I have to fix it, or find a different place to punch in, which requires me to zoom in, find the right spot, make a note of where it's at, zoom out, get my points set in the transport, do the punch in, repeat if it's not right, etc. It's a royal pain!

Plus, I can never think of the right commands to turn on and off. Like, if I'm zoomed way in on a waveform, press play to hear if that's where the pop is, my curser takes off like a rocket, then I lose it, so then I have to scroll back and forth to find it, upon which I have now lost my place of where I thought the pop was, so I have to zoom out to find it, then zoom back in to try and find the right spot, etc.

Now.. is "scrubbing" audio that little thing that has the speaker, so that when you drag it around, you can hear audio? I never use that because I guess I don't know how. It's so SLOW sounding that I can never even make out what I'm hearing.

I think what i would use the most is being able to use your control strip to slide my window around to view diff area's of the song. This is helpful if I want to copy paste the first chorus at the end of the song, etc.

I'll check that documentation soon too. I might explain some things. I'm not sure if the AT can control your zooming or not. That would be great if I did.

I think you've answered my questions good enough now that I feel like the AT is the right choice for me, unless I decide to buy a used Command 8 or Mackie Control. But even still, that's several hundred bucks more, and might be overkill.

Maybe my problem is that I need to learn how to work more efficiently. Perhaps I'm doing everything the hard way?




(0 replies, posted in AlphaTrack:User Forum)

jpoprock wrote:

I got lucky and purchased a used AlphaTrack from a guy in the Gearslutz.com forum for $120! Should be here next week! He didn't use it much due to "bad power" in his house. Said that the unit didn't play nice, but when he used it as his friends house, it worked perfectly. He wants a Faderport instead. He also said that he sent it back to the company and they flashed the firmware (I didn't realize that you couldn't do it yourself?), and they also included "new knobs" for him. I wonder if FA changed the knob design then? What's this about your power source not playing nice too? I have a dedicated circuit with brand new wiring fed to my gear, so I should be fine.

I also found a great deal on a Digi Command 8 that I'm going to buy soon. I'll probl use the AT in remote situations, or I may find that it suits me better than the C8, of which I could probably sell it and make money since I'm getting such a great deal to begin with.

Thanks guys!

CS:Hello jporock,

yes, we did design a new style knob set based on customer feedback, They provide a bit more grip.

The power problwm is really a ground problem. If your computers PSU isn't plug-in into a grounded outlet, or your laptop power supply doesn't have the ground pin then the AlphaTrack can get fed noise from the power which it may translate as touch messages. If you have a decent ground as most people do then it shouldn't be an issue.

A note regarding the Command8, it is the only Digi controller that doesn't allow any other MIDI controller to be used along side it. That's in the fine print of the C8 manual. I have no idea what the rational was behind that decision. You can edit the MIDI Controller setup panel and alternate between the C8 and the AlphaTrack without closing PT though.


jpoprock wrote:

Well, that is a bummer that I can't use the Command 8 w/ the AT. I thought about instead buying a Mackie Control Univ, but since I mostly use Pro Tools, I think the Command 8 would be the best. However, I also like Logic Pro and Live too. I think the C8 works with those as well. If I didn't use Pro Tools, I'd probl get the Mackie. But I don't see myself giving up on PT. I'm only now learning Logic Pro. And there are an awful lot of Logic users out there. So maybe I'll find myself using that more and more. I'm just so familiar w/ PT's editing, and could never quite get the hang of Logic. But this new version seems really cool, plus, I've never taken the time to properly learn it either.

The guy that sold me the AT said he didn't have a ground wire in his outlet. Mine is grounded, so I should have no problems.