How to Export MIDI from Melodyne [DEAD SIMPLE]

Melodyne is one of the most useful tools that any music producer could use. Its features as an audio editing tool are endless, and it’s arguably the best at pitch correction while keeping the qualities that make recordings sound human. It has some other lesser-known features that beginners to the software are often unaware of, ie, exporting MIDI.

In simple terms, it’s possible to take an audio track and turn it into MIDI. You’ll have to print the recording into it first, Melodyne will then take the audio file and export it to your desktop as a MIDI file. The thing about it is that, while imperfect, it’s actually pretty good at mapping the proper notes. So how do we do this then?

To export MIDI from Melodyne
1) Load Melodyne on your desired track
2) Transfer the recording to Melodyne
3) Select “Settings” > Export as MIDI
4) Choose your file name and send it to your desktop
5) Load it back into your DAW as a MIDI file

And it doesn’t get much simpler than that. If you haven’t already done this after having read the description because you need more information, don’t worry, I got you. What we’ll do now is I’ll deliver a more step-by-step, illustrated, tutorial, that way you catch all the steps and you know what’s possible. After showing you how to export audio from the stand-alone version, I’ll also share a tip toward the end…

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Exporting MIDI from Melodyne – A Step-By-Step Guide

How to Export MIDI from Melodyne [Dead Simple]
You’ll have to use Melodyne 5 the Editor version (on Plugin Boutique/Plugin Fox/Thomann/zZounds) in order to have this capability, as not all Melodyne versions have the feature.

1) Load Melodyne on Your Desired Track

Where to Put Melodyne In Your Plugin Signal Chain [EASY] - Featured Image (1000 × 600 px)
Always load Melodyne as the first plugin in your signal chain if you want the cleanest signal possible.

As I discussed in my guide on this, it’s best to put Melodyne at the start of your plugins, because then the other plugins won’t affect it.

If you do it the other way, the processing and effects will be printed into Melodyne along with the audio, and removing them is impossible. You’ll have to start all over again if you want to remove the sound of the processing and effects.

2) Transfer the Recording to Melodyne

Press 'Transfer' and Then Hit Play - How to Add Vibrato in Melodyne [SUPER SIMPLE]
The Transfer Button in Melodyne

The next thing you want to do is press the Transfer button as is shown in the image above. Press play on your project, and then wait for Melodyne to buffer the desired part. You don’t have to process the entire recording, as you can just go around and transfer each part individually if you want.

3) Select “Settings” > Export as MIDI

Save as MIDI - How to Export MIDI from Melodyne [DEAD SIMPLE]
Hit Settings > Export as MIDI

Go up into your settings and then choose “Save as MIDI.” This will take you to the standard Finder export where you have the option of where you’d like to send the file.

4) Choose Your File Name and Send it to Your Desktop

Save to Your Desktop - How to Export MIDI from Melodyne [DEAD SIMPLE]
Choose your desktop

I always send my files to the desktop because I find they don’t get lost that way.

5) Load it Back into Your DAW as a MIDI File

Dragging MIDI into the DAW - How to Export MIDI from Melodyne [DEAD SIMPLE]
Drag the new MIDI file back into your project if you want, or send it via email, if you need to.

A lot can be done with the MIDI files. It’s actually not uncommon for people to use Melodyne to absorb another melody from a different song, and then export parts of it as MIDI for their own track. You can do many other cool things with Melodyne (my review).

3 Tips for Exporting Audio as MIDI in Melodyne

1) Melodyne Does A Better Job of Exporting MIDI If There Is Less Pitch Drift

In my experience, if you’re trying to export an audio file as MIDI, it’s best if the audio is as clean as possible, without any artifacts or noises, as well as a minimal amount of pitch drift. For example, if the pitch trails off a lot on each note, the MIDI Export will, in some cases, reflect that “imperfection.”

For a cleaner MIDI export, try to minimize the number of pitch drifts. Stabilize the pitch drift with the Pitch Drift tool in the Pitch Modulation section and then try exporting it if you’re having problems. Explained another way, make the pitch lines within the blobs a bit straighter if you want a better export.

2) Minimize the Amount Of Background Noise

As I briefly stated a moment ago, if you want a cleaner MIDI export, it’s best to have an audio signal with very little background noise and extraneous noises.

If there is no background noise or anything like that at all, you’ll have a much better time getting a proper MIDI export. Usually, this comes down to how you’ve treated your recording space which is something that I’ll cover on another day.

3) Use the Sibilant Balance Tools to Eliminate or Attenuate Non-Pitch Sounds

Non-pitch sounds refer to the “s,” “k,” “t”, and “p,” sounds, also called the consonant sounds. If you’ve used the sibilant balance tool to minimize the sounds, you should also get a cleaner MIDI export.

Although, it’s possible that Melodyne is able to differentiate between non-pitch and pitch sounds now during export. The reason I say this is they did make it so that automatic pitch correction no longer affected non-pitch sounds between the upgrade from Melodyne 4 to Melodyne 5.

The reason they had to do this is that pitching up/down consonant sounds like the “k,” for example, can sound pretty terrible. Those sounds aren’t meant to be pitch corrected.

How to Export Audio from Melodyne (Stand Alone Version)

How to Export Audio from Melodyne - How to Export MIDI from Melodyne [DEAD SIMPLE]
To export audio from Melodyne using the stand-alone version, all you have to do is click “File > Export > Export,” after having chosen your file format. You can choose from a WAVE, MIDI file, AIFF, Lead Sheet, or Tempo Map before exporting.

Other Melodyne Articles

Important Things to Note About Exporting MIDI From Melodyne

1) It Appears That You Can’t Export Audio From the Plugin Version of Melodyne

I’ve read online from other users that it’s possible to render the edited audio from Melodyne onto a new track, but I haven’t been able to figure out how to do this. Not in FL Studio nor have I been able to do it in GarageBand either.

You obviously can do it with the stand-alone version, but not with the plugin. I’m not sure why Melodyne has set things up in this way, because, in my view, It would be easy to do considering they’ve enabled us to export the audio file as MIDI.

Gear Mentioned

1) Melodyne 5 – Editor (on Plugin Boutique/Plugin Fox/Thomann/zZounds)