Hi Hat choking - how do I make it work?

Hey all - I’m trying to get hi hat choking to work correctly with BFD3. I pretty much exclusively program my drums on the piano roll, so I’m not really looking at setting different articulations at different velocity levels. I have noticed that the “choke” articulation is always blank when you load up a set of hi hats, and mapping that articulation to a MIDI note works. However, I am trying to get the other various hi hat articulations to choke each other - for instance, if I go from a closed hat to a 3/4 open tip back to a closed hat articulation. The second closed hat doesn’t choke the 3/4 open tip articulation and I can’t figure out how to make it do so. Any help is appreciated. Thanks.

If I read you correctly, you say that when jumping from an open hi-hat to a closed one, you still hear the sound of the open hi-hat sample instead of it choking to the closed one ?

It should do it automatically. A few days ago I had the same problem but after restarting the DAW it worked fine…

You may need to check your engine preferences, if you somehow tweaked it without noticing :

Here are the default values…

Hi FromAutumn,

Thanks so much for the reply. You interpreted my problem correctly - closed hi hat samples do not choke open hi hat samples. I don’t leave my DAW running when not in use, so it’s been restarted many times as I’ve been troubleshooting this problem. My DAW is Pro Tools 12.

I hadn’t changed any engine preferences in BFD3 since installation, but I double checked my settings anyway and they are the same as what you posted in your response. Interestingly, the pedal hi hat articulation will choke open hi hat samples, but the closed hi hat samples will not. To get around this issue for the moment, I ended up putting pedal hi hat hits at 0 velocity underneath my closed hi hat samples that I want to choke the preceding open hi hat.

I’ve used BFD 1.5 and 2 before and hi hats worked as expected in those versions. Unfortunately this has been an issue for me since installing BFD3.

Again, I appreciate the reply and the help. Thanks!

Hmm, I’m seeing it work exactly as one would expect it to.

I wonder if you’re not actually getting a double hit, and only one is being choked. There are a couple of ways this can occur. One is an actual double event, and the other is when MIDI loops back into the VST.

Check standalone, with just the groove editor, and see if you have an issue. To ensure there’s no loop, go to Preferences->Open MIDI Preferences, and uncheck all outputs. Then make a groove that does what you’re testing. Did it work?

Now, go back to the DAW. Are you using the groove engine, tracks, the pallette, or triggering individual notes in PT. In the upper right of BFD3, make sure Groove Off/Track/Palette are set the way you want to.

If you’re triggering individual notes from the DAW, zoom in very tightly. Make sure there aren’t two MIDI events. Go into the MIDI setup in PT, and make sure it’s not looping MIDI back into BFD.

Hi Kafka,

Thanks for the reply. I’ve done some more troubleshooting, and the issue only happens when I am triggering the hi hats via MIDI notes on the Pro Tools piano roll. Using the BFD3 Groove Editor either standalone or as a PT plugin works as expected. I’ve gone through my settings in both BFD3, PT and Audio/MIDI Setup and I can’t find anything offhand that would be causing the issue, but who knows?

Perhaps it’s time to rethink how I work with BFD and do my drum programming within the Groove Editor and then just trigger the patterns via the PT piano roll. I’d still like to figure out why it’s not working in my original workflow though.

Thanks again for your advice!

Well, I prefer the groove editor and use drum tracks, but you should work however is best for you.

How are you entering the data into the piano roll? Are you drawing it or triggering it with some kind of MIDI controller? If it the latter, then dollars to donuts you have a loop that’s doubling the notes prior to Protools. Any chance your device has both a USB cable and a MIDI cable? Zoom in really closely on the piano roll, and see if there isn’t a second note.

I am entering the notes manually on the piano roll in Pro Tools, no MIDI controller. Regarding the doubling of notes, I can guarantee you there are none. This behavior is consistent across all sessions and all instantiations of BFD3 in my Pro Tools install. It’s not just a single drums track I’m having problems with, it’s the behavior of BFD3 in Pro Tools itself.

Are you using variable articulations together with discrete articulations? Could you add some CC4 messages to your drum track and observe if something changes? Something along the lines of 127 for 4 bars, 0 for 4 bars more.

Also, enable the MIDI log, and watch what events are coming in.