Many modern recordings sound mechanical, like a machine playing music. This is often because the recording has a single, static tempo, whereas the tempo in a natural performance tends to drift slightly. Interesting and musical results can be achieved by varying the tempo in your recordings. Tempo changes do not affect your ability to sync recordings to the tempo, as the click track and all other elements in Studio One follow the tempo dynamically as it changes.
Inserting Tempo Changes
To insert a tempo change, open the Tempo Track by clicking on the Tempo Track button above the Track Column. Then select the Arrow or Draw tool in the Arrange view. Click at any position in the Tempo Track to insert a tempo change and drag up or down to adjust the Tempo value at that position, in much the same way you can with other automation types in Studio One.
Tempo smoothly changes between points on the Tempo Track. To create a curve, hover the mouse pointer over the middle of a line segment until a small handle appears. Drag the handle up or down to change the shape of the curve. To change an existing tempo value in the Tempo Track, click-and-drag your chosen point with the Arrow tool. You can also click-and-drag any point left or right across the Timeline to reposition the tempo change in the Tempo Track.
The value set by the tempo change continues for the rest of the Song or until the next tempo change. Also, the tempo value in the Transport is immediately updated at the appropriate time, according to each tempo change.
If the related Audio Tracks are in Timestretch mode, Audio Events are stretched dynamically to reflect any tempo change on the fly, with no need to split or otherwise edit the Events.
Given this flexibility with smooth tempo changes over time, you may appreciate these two visualization options, accessible by right-clicking in the time ruler above the tempo track and navigating to Timebase/Beat-Linear or Timebase/Time-Linear.
When Beat-Linear is selected, all bars in your Song are shown with the same length, while the time scale of the timeline shifts to match your tempo changes. For example, with the timebase set to Seconds, as the tempo changes, the spacing between seconds changes even as the space between bars remains the same.
When Time-Linear is selected, bars in your song change their visual length to represent the shortening or lengthening effect of tempo changes. With the timebase set to Seconds, you'll see that the spacing of seconds remains the same, even as the space between bars changes.
Set Tempo Range
By default, Studio One shows you a range from 60-240 BPM in the Tempo Track. However, in most cases, Songs do not require that amount of tempo range, and you may find it useful to narrow the scope of the display. This makes fine-tuning tempo changes easier and more accurate.
To set the range of the Tempo Track, double-click in the "max" and "min" fields to the left of the Tempo Track. Enter your new maximum and minimum BPM values, and watch the display focus in on your chosen tempo range. Changes to these settings are saved with the current Song.