Tags: posts polarity-music Bitwig Sampling Plugins Sound-Design Tutorial Recording

Review of Rewind Plugin: A Time-Traveling Sampler for Music Production

Tutorial | Jul 17, 2023

In this video, I introduce you to the "Rewind" plugin by MonkeyC Audio, which is a rolling sampler similar to one I showcased in a previous video. The plugin costs $50 and can be used in Bitwig as a plugin or as a standalone application. It utilizes iLok, which is a downside. I demonstrate how to use the plugin in Bitwig, where you can load it onto the master track. To hear the recorded audio, you need to enable input monitoring. The plugin continuously records audio, so you don't need to press record. If you accidentally create a great sound while sound designing, you can simply rewind back and select the desired portion to save as a wave file or as a sample within a sampler instrument track. Additionally, the plugin allows you to record MIDI data along with the audio. By switching to the MIDI page and configuring the MIDI settings, you can record MIDI notes and their corresponding audio output simultaneously. The plugin also offers features such as normalizing the exported wave file, changing the output resolution, selecting a different export location, and more. One interesting feature is the gate hold length, which allows you to set a threshold for audio recording. When the audio signal goes below the threshold, recording stops after a set amount of time, creating distinct regions. These regions can be easily selected and exported. Overall, the "Rewind" plugin provides a convenient way to capture and reuse creative moments in your workflow.

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Questions & Answers

Maybe you dont watch the video, here are some important takeaways:

What is the "Rewind" plugin and how does it work?

The "Rewind" plugin is a rolling sampler that allows you to capture and use audio and MIDI data in real-time. It is a plugin that can be used in a DAW or as a standalone application. It records everything that happens on your PC, allowing you to easily capture accidental, genius moments or sound design experiments. To use it, you simply place the plugin on the master track in your DAW and enable input monitoring. It continuously records audio and MIDI data, so there's no need to press record. When you want to save a specific moment or sound, you can simply rewind back, select the desired portion, and drag it into your project as a waveform, MIDI data, or even as an instrument track with a sampler.

What are the downsides of using the "Rewind" plugin?

The only downside mentioned is that the "Rewind" plugin uses iLok. This means that you will need an iLok USB dongle or the iLok License Manager software installed on your computer in order to activate and use the plugin. Some users may find this inconvenient or prefer not to use iLok for various reasons. However, it's important to note that this is a personal preference and may not be a significant drawback for all users.

How does the "Rewind" plugin integrate with Bitwig?

In Bitwig, the "Rewind" plugin can be used as a plugin on the master track or as a standalone application with a loopback device. When used as a plugin, you can place it on the master track and enable input monitoring to continuously record audio and MIDI data from your project. The captured data can then be easily dragged and dropped into different parts of your project, including the arranger, clip launcher, or even onto an instrument track with a sampler. Additionally, the plugin seamlessly integrates with Bitwig's MIDI settings, allowing you to capture MIDI data from specific devices or controllers.

What additional features does the "Rewind" plugin offer?

In addition to its core functionality of capturing and using audio and MIDI data, the "Rewind" plugin offers several useful features. One interesting feature is the ability to normalize the exported audio waveform, ensuring consistent levels regardless of the original recording's volume. The export settings also allow you to choose different bit depths and export locations. Another notable feature is the gate hold length, which allows you to set a duration for capturing audio data based on a threshold. This can be useful for automatically stopping the recording after a certain amount of silence or when the signal falls below a specific level. Finally, the plugin offers a buffer of up to 60 minutes, allowing you to access and reuse audio and MIDI data from a longer timeframe, giving you flexibility and convenience in your production workflow.


This is what im talking about in this video. The text is transcribed by AI, so it might not be perfect. If you find any mistakes, please let me know.
You can also click on the timestamps to jump to the right part of the video, which should be helpful.

[00:00:00] So in this video it's about "Rewind" by MonkeyC Audio.
[00:00:04] You can see it here in the background.
[00:00:05] It's basically the same thing as the rolling sampler I showed you in one of my last videos.
[00:00:09] This one here is 50 bucks.
[00:00:12] Link is in the description below.
[00:00:13] It's not an affiliate link, it's not an ad.
[00:00:16] I just discovered this and I want to show you how it works.
[00:00:19] And the only downside is I think it's using iLok.
[00:00:24] So that's that.
[00:00:26] So in Bitwig it looks like this here.
[00:00:30] We have already here one channel or one track, one instrument track with the piano text.
[00:00:35] We can place something on the MIDI keyboard.
[00:00:43] And we want to record this.
[00:00:44] So on the master track here we just load in the "Rewind" plugin.
[00:00:48] And you don't need to use the plugin version.
[00:00:51] You can also use the standalone version and maybe use a loopback device on the audio device
[00:00:57] and just record with the standalone application everything that happens on your PC all the
[00:01:02] time.
[00:01:03] It's also a possibility.
[00:01:06] Or you use it here like I did in the DAW itself as a plugin.
[00:01:09] So I put this here on the master track.
[00:01:12] And to actually hear something, so when we play here, you can see it's recording stuff
[00:01:17] but we don't hear anything.
[00:01:18] We have to enable here the input monitoring.
[00:01:30] So it records all the time.
[00:01:32] You don't need to press record or anything.
[00:01:34] It just records every time.
[00:01:37] And then you do something by accident.
[00:01:41] Something pretty genius.
[00:01:42] It's the best melody ever.
[00:01:44] The best sound accidentally creating a super nice sound while sound designing.
[00:01:51] And then you want to reuse it but you haven't recorded it.
[00:01:55] With this one here, just rewind back.
[00:01:57] Press into here in the waveform.
[00:02:00] Stop the recording.
[00:02:01] Then select something by clicking and dragging.
[00:02:04] And then you click and hold.
[00:02:07] And then you can drag it out onto the arranger here to have a wave file or onto the clip
[00:02:12] launcher.
[00:02:13] Or you can drag it onto the track itself to create an instrument track with a sampler on
[00:02:18] it and a sample in the sampler.
[00:02:21] Which is also nice.
[00:02:23] So this is basically your ticket back in time to use something you just did.
[00:02:31] So you can see here we are back into recording mode.
[00:02:35] And we want to record also now MIDI data.
[00:02:38] To make this happen, we have to switch it to MIDI page.
[00:02:41] And it says please configure MIDI settings to enable capturing.
[00:02:46] And to do this, we switch here to the settings page.
[00:02:51] Go to MIDI here.
[00:02:53] And we want to record here my Keystep Pro MIDI keyboard device.
[00:02:57] And now when I close this back down.
[00:03:01] You can.
[00:03:10] You can record MIDI on notes and the waveform, the output at the same time as you can see
[00:03:16] on the background.
[00:03:18] Which is pretty helpful because now we can click in here, stop the recording and can
[00:03:24] say I want to drag out the audio.
[00:03:28] So click and hold, drag it in here.
[00:03:32] And then we switch back to MIDI using the same selected region.
[00:03:36] Click and hold and drag it onto the initial instrument track here.
[00:03:43] And it's basically in sync now.
[00:03:47] So we can hit play and it plays on the original plugin.
[00:03:52] And we also play the waveform at the same time and it's perfect in sync.
[00:04:09] Okay.
[00:04:11] You can also record multiple instruments or MIDI controllers at the same time.
[00:04:18] And then when you want to select here, not everything at once, you can select any different
[00:04:23] devices with this dropdown at the top.
[00:04:26] I haven't tried this yet, actually.
[00:04:29] Maybe I should.
[00:04:30] So you can see the more devices we select here on the settings page, the more devices
[00:04:34] are popping up here in this dropdown.
[00:04:37] And then you can select just what you want to drag out, but you basically can record
[00:04:43] everything.
[00:04:44] So audio output and MIDI data output from your controllers at all times.
[00:04:51] And you can also record up to 60 minutes here.
[00:04:58] So a buffer of 60 minutes.
[00:05:00] So when you did something by accident 20 minutes earlier, then you can go up to 60 minutes.
[00:05:06] So it's pretty nice to have.
[00:05:09] Another interesting feature for me, what I found interesting is by the export settings
[00:05:14] here, we can normalize the export.
[00:05:17] I switched this here to yes.
[00:05:18] So it peak normalizes the wave file, basically.
[00:05:23] So when we have here, maybe something pretty quiet recorded.
[00:05:28] Switch this back here.
[00:05:30] Let's go down with the volume here and go back to recording.
[00:05:35] Yeah, I know it's pretty quiet, but now when we select something, click and track, now
[00:05:50] it's normalized and we track this in all its MIDI data.
[00:05:53] Sorry.
[00:05:54] You click and track here.
[00:05:56] Now it's normalized.
[00:05:57] You can see here's the biggest peak.
[00:06:01] It's perfect, basically.
[00:06:03] So when you record something pretty quiet, it makes it automatically loud enough.
[00:06:08] You can also change here the output to 32 bits or 24 bits or 16 bits.
[00:06:16] It's pretty nice.
[00:06:17] You can select a different export location.
[00:06:20] You can show the export location in the Explorer.
[00:06:25] By general, you have something here, the gate hold length, which is interesting.
[00:06:29] It's a feature I want to show you next.
[00:06:33] With recording length here, I have one minute for me.
[00:06:35] At the moment, it's perfectly fine.
[00:06:37] We can change the waveform resolution here.
[00:06:39] It doesn't do that much for me, actually.
[00:06:43] And we can resume recording on close.
[00:06:45] So when you close this plugin, it still records.
[00:06:49] If you want to have to do this, if you want to have this feature, then you have to click
[00:06:52] here to yes, of course.
[00:06:57] Then the normalize is pretty nice.
[00:06:58] Okay.
[00:06:59] So let's go to the gate hold length here.
[00:07:01] We have this at one seconds.
[00:07:03] We can also switch to five seconds or 10 seconds or 20 seconds.
[00:07:07] And what this means is when you record something in this mode, let's delete this here.
[00:07:15] We have now here this button called gate, and we have to switch this on.
[00:07:20] And then we get the threshold.
[00:07:21] And every time the audio signal goes below this threshold, it waits exactly one second
[00:07:28] because I had done it in one second.
[00:07:31] It waits one second, and then it stops recording.
[00:07:34] And it starts recording when we cross the threshold again with audio.
[00:07:38] So now we can see it stops recording.
[00:07:40] It puts in here some kind of green marker to show you this is the last time we stopped
[00:07:45] the recording.
[00:07:46] So now we play something.
[00:07:56] It's actually pretty quiet because it uses here also, I think, MIDI data.
[00:08:00] It records when it receives MIDI data.
[00:08:04] So maybe I switch here a MIDI off for this experiment.
[00:08:09] Switch this off.
[00:08:12] And now I play something, but it doesn't record because the audio doesn't cross here the threshold.
[00:08:20] So we have to increase the volume.
[00:08:31] Then it goes below the threshold and it waits one second and then it stops.
[00:08:36] And then we have a new marker here, right?
[00:08:39] And then you maybe want to select a different reset here.
[00:08:52] Then we go below the threshold.
[00:08:53] It waits one second and it stops.
[00:08:56] Select a different setting here.
[00:09:08] It waits one second and it stops and we get the marker.
[00:09:10] So now we have nice little chunks here of data without too much silence between these
[00:09:16] sessions or these regions.
[00:09:19] And when you do stuff like recording multiple presets like I did here with the PianoTek
[00:09:25] and you want to get them close together and put them then into the sampler to use it with
[00:09:29] textures mode and granular synthesis, right?
[00:09:33] It's pretty neat to have.
[00:09:34] So now we can go here into the editor and we have now these green markers here and you
[00:09:43] can click on these small triangles.
[00:09:50] You can test what's in these regions, but you can also click here now on the top of
[00:09:55] these regions to select them.
[00:10:00] And then you can click and hold and drag it out.
[00:10:05] Go in here, click, track or click and hold and drag it out.
[00:10:08] So you can select each of these regions pretty easily or you can, I don't know if you can
[00:10:17] select everything at once.
[00:10:19] Maybe you can hold shift.
[00:10:20] I haven't tried it yet.
[00:10:21] No, it's not possible.
[00:10:24] You have to probably select this like this and then you click and hold and export everything.
[00:10:31] So this would be the option here for the, let's go in here, for the sampler.
[00:10:41] So here we have basically all these different presets close together in the sampler and
[00:10:45] switch this to Texas mode and then use that.
[00:10:57] Yeah, it's pretty neat to have something like this.