If you happen to’ve ever needed to normalize an entire bunch of recordsdata without delay in Reaper – whereas retaining their authentic file names – this is one solution to do it.

Once I’m mastering a sound results library, I do it in passes. I do not simply pull in a supply file, chop it up into particular person sounds, apply processing, zip it with a EULA and add it to my retailer multi function go. No, I carry out these steps over time (weeks, months). For one factor, it is an excessive amount of work to do in a single sitting – however I additionally discover that the ultimate outcome advantages from slightly perspective and afterthought (which, by the best way, I discovered from Paul Virostek of Airborne Sound).

I may after all simply open the batch converter, import the recordsdata, tick the “normalize” examine field…oh wait; THERE ISN’T ONE!

Because of this, it isn’t unusual for me to tug an entire bunch of sound recordsdata again right into a mastering session to proceed engaged on them. One thing I usually need to do, is normalize the recordsdata – then render them to new recordsdata. By default, Reaper permits me to do that in several methods:

  • I may render every file individually, giving me full management of file-naming. Takes without end.
  • I may render all of the recordsdata in a single go, utilizing the choice “Selected media items” within the Render dialog. This is able to render all of the recordsdata with no matter I sort within the the “file name” discipline, with solely a numerical incrementation to differentiate them. Not acceptable.
  • I may after all simply open the batch converter, import the recordsdata, tick the “normalize” examine field…oh wait; THERE ISN’T ONE!

Yep, there’s the rub. Reaper’s batch converter can do tons of helpful issues like pattern/bit price conversion and use fx chains – but it surely doesn’t do normalization.

What to do then? Some people out on teh internetz counsel utilizing the batch converter in Audacity as a substitute of moaning about Reaper’s deficiencies, but when I can keep away from that break in my work-flow, I’ll.

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To the rescue comes Reaper’s Customized Actions plus the ultra-useful SWS extensions (a third-party add-on from Standing Water Studios). Let’s look nearer at every of them:

Actions in Reaper are like macros. They will let you automate duties you’ll in any other case do manually, saving numerous time and pressure in your mouse-hand. The actually good thing is, you’ll be able to create customized actions by stringing quite a few totally different actions collectively and binding them to their very own keyboard shortcut in the event you like. A unbelievable instrument to get rid of repetitive and tedious work, then.

Let’s arrange a customized motion to do that work for us. First discover the “Actions” pulldown in the primary toolbar, then click on “Show actions list”:

The actions listing dialog exhibits (shock!) an inventory of all obtainable actions, whether or not Reaper defaults, add-ons or customized actions arrange by you. The listing additionally exhibits the keyboard shortcuts for every motion – if one is ready up. On the precise, we discover buttons to arrange shortcuts, create new customized actions or edit present ones.

On the the highest, there’s a search discipline which permits us to filter the listing just by typing partial matches. Kind “SWS” to deliver up all actions from that extension, for example.

However since there are such a lot of actions within the listing, discovering the precise ones for the job, generally takes some time. The Reaper Person Information does not clarify any of those intimately both, though it does clarify the underlying phrases (what are areas, markers, and many others) so RTFM if you wish to get the many of the actions listing. Trial and error can be a viable method at occasions.

I can now click on “New” to create a brand new customized motion and select the actions I would like.
Within the screenshot beneath, you’ll be able to see which of them I selected.

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Talking of SWS, this enormous bag of methods contains (amongst many different helpful features) one thing referred to as AutoRender. Mainly, it permits us to render separate areas as separate recordsdata. This can be a good begin.

However in a latest session, I had imported over 100 recordsdata to be normalized and re-rendered. I did not need to manually create areas for every of them, so I wanted an motion that will assign areas to separate recordsdata mechanically.

With SWS put in, I’ve precisely that motion – “Create regions from selected item(s) named with take”. Drag that motion from the listing into the empty space on the precise, so as to add it to your customized motion. Invoking this, I can merely choose all 100+ recordsdata and this motion creates areas for all of them, naming them after their guardian recordsdata as effectively.

Subsequent, I need to render all these areas mechanically, so I add “SWS/Shane: Batch Render Regions” to my customized motion, including batch rendering to its performance. I can now render all my recordsdata in a single go along with their names intact – nearly. Because of creating the areas, the names of the rendered recordsdata now have a numeral added to them. I have never discovered a solution to get rid of this habits, so I’ve to batch re-name these recordsdata utilizing a really nifty piece of software program referred to as Bulk Rename Utility (Win solely). A small tradeoff, given how highly effective a renaming app that is. I additionally use it for ensuring all file names in an sfx launch are in keeping with one another.

As you’ll be able to see, attending to grips with customized actions is absolutely the best way to productiveness in Reaper

I am principally performed now, apart from slightly housekeeping. When I’m performed rendering new recordsdata, I all the time prefer to clear the session of the unique recordsdata. It’s because I do not create a brand new session for every set of recordsdata I edit or course of, however as a substitute have a session which I reuse over an over once more. However once I delete the recordsdata, the areas do not disappear with them. Deleting the areas manually takes without end, so I added a 3rd operate to my customized motion simply to take care of this. Identical goes for all of the markers, so: SWS: Delete all markers.

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I now have a customized motion referred to as “Auto Region & Render” which does this:

  1. Create areas from chosen gadgets
  2. Batch render these areas with their (nearly) authentic names
  3. Delete all of the areas after rendering
  4. Delete all markers after rendering

That is precisely what I needed, so I click on “OK” and the motion is saved. I did not assign a keyboard shortcut to this motion, however I simply may. As it’s, it now resides within the Actions pulldown, below Customized actions. That is loads environment friendly for me.

However wait, I hear you say – that is not batch normalizing? Nope, you are proper. However I spotted I may not essentially pull in a bunch of recordsdata to normalize them. Maybe I might relatively regulate quantity, size, fades, and many others of a few of the recordsdata – all of which I am unable to do within the batch converter. Automating duties which demand vital listening and making particular person choices for every file does not make sense. Loads of this work should nonetheless be performed manually to be performed proper. So whereas this resolution does not do precisely what I got down to do, it really solves my downside in a way more versatile method – because of the existence of customized actions.

So there you go. As you’ll be able to see, attending to grips with customized actions is absolutely the best way to productiveness in Reaper – I’ve to this point solely actually dipped my toes in it, however can be doing extra of it for positive.

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