MP3 creation feature [Available]

How about the ability to create and export an MP3 file from within SM? I often use SM to create a backing track for use within Acapella, or even to share ideas with bandmates.

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Yes! I always thought this wasn’t technically possible due to constraints resulting from the way Strum Machine was built, but a few weeks ago I discovered that there is a way to record the output of Strum Machine and offer an MP3 download, all within the browser or app. You’ll have to record it in real time (1x speed), at least initially, but otherwise it’ll be easy and there will be no quality loss. Still a lot of unknowns about how I’m going to code this, but according to my research it is technically feasible to do.

Stay tuned and thanks for your input!


Update:

This is now available as an opt-in feature in the website version of Strum Machine! Here’s how to enable it:

  • Go to Advanced Settings (top-left menu) and enable “Backing track recorder”
  • On any song page, open up the new “Recorder” menu item (right sidebar) and click “Record next playback”
  • Set Auto-Finish to whatever you like (optional but recommended), then hit record and let the song play and end.
  • A few seconds after the song ends, an MP3 recording of the backing track will be downloaded.

Note: Some folks have reported problems with MP3 files downloaded from Safari. So far the only solution I’ve been able to come up with is to use another browser, like Chrome or Firefox.

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I’ve been recording the SM track directly into Audacity, a free share ware recording program.

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Thanks, Douglas, I’m essentially doing the same. But I want to use the file in Acapella as a backing track, so having the ability to create an MP3 file right from within SM would be a time saver if it can be done.

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I’ve also recorded SM tracks into Audacity by patching a cable out from my headphone jack into my audio interface. Worked OK but could never get the level as high as I would like and had to apply amplitude to the track. Being able to export an audio file would be so much easier…for us, not @LukeAbbott. :wink:

Great news… the beta site now has a built-in backing track recorder! I encourage you to try it out and give me feedback about how it works (or doesn’t work) for you.

Here’s how:

  • Log into beta.strummachine.com (not the normal site or the app)
  • Go to Advanced Settings (top-left menu) and enable “Backing track recorder”
  • On any song page, open up the new “Recorder” menu item (right sidebar) and click “Record next playback”
  • Set Auto-Finish to whatever you like (optional but recommended), then hit record and let the song play and end.
  • A few seconds after the song ends, an MP3 recording of the backing track will be downloaded.

Note, your computer’s microphone is not used so you will not be recorded if you play along.

Let me know how it works for y’all!

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This is a very nice feature Luke but I’m hearing some artifacts throughout on the mp3. Have you noticed that?

I tried it out - works good!

Can there be an option to save it as .wav? Or would that take too much space/bandwidth? Would be nice to pop that right into a DAW.

@DaveBerry: I haven’t noticed that. Would you send me an example of an MP3 you made that has the artifacts? You can either click my name above to message me or send an email to support [at] strummachine [dot] com.

@SharonaClarke: Yes, that’s possible, although I haven’t tested it. Omitted it for the first beta version to keep things simple, plus I was waiting for someone to request it. :slight_smile: Most DAWs these days can import MP3s though, can’t they? Still, I see the value in offering the option.

Thanks for giving it a try!

Hi Luke, I sent you a file. I just tested after upgrading to Catalina and it mostly has gone away though still occasionally present. Perhaps it has something to do with the USB device that I have connected.

Thanks for the file, Dave. I’m not sure what’s causing that. Will be interested to find out a) if anyone else experiences that issue, and b) if it still occurs when downloading as a WAV file, which I will offer as an option in the future.

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Hi Luke, I did some experimenting turning off my DAW, turning down sound input, muting output, unplugging audio/video USB sources etc and I noticed it still happens using Safari especially on a solo bass track at max level (just discovered you have a little mixer in there, nice). I switched from Safari to Firefox and viola, there was no noise. I don’t have any plugins in Safari. Maybe this will help you isolate it. cheers.

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Have you ever thought of exporting a midi file? It would be an awesome way to import not only the cords but the tempo map and key into a DAW. thanks.

Producing mp3s is exactly the feature I have been looking for. I had no problem with the sound quality and importing into Cubase. Many thanks.

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I use the headphone out on my laptop to my Mustang III amp (1/8 male to 1/4 male cable) from the amp back to my laptop using the usb on the amp to usb on laptop, In Audacity you have to get this set up as a microphone. On my system it’s called internal auxiliary jack.

On the Mac I use SoundFlower (Audio Routine tool https://soundflower.en.softonic.com/mac) to redirect StrumMachine audio output to the Quicktime Player app or GarageBand. Useful little tool.

I have had good success recording mp3s. Glad to see that added.

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Hi Luke, you may have missed my comment above so I’ll repeat it. Have you ever thought of exporting to a midi file? It would be an awesome way to allow importing not only the chords but the tempo map and key into a DAW. thanks as always.
Dave

@DaveBerry I did miss your comment, whoops. I haven’t considered MIDI export. So it wouldn’t be for playback so much as a structure for the DAW. Interesting idea! I’ll write it down.

The next beta update (it’ll be a big one, with lots of song editor changes) includes a tweak to the recorder that delays encoding until after playback has stopped. Hoping that will solve any lingering audio quality issues.

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I have recorded .mp3 of a track but can’t find it. 1. To what directory do downloads go? 2. Can I select a directory?