Detect is Good, but could it be better?

Scaler Detect detects chords and displays them as a continuous line of chords.

There are Apps that detect chords, timing, beats, bars and even sections within the song or composition and display these in a form familiar to most computer music creators.

As a compositional tool, if you could display the chords and details in a form similar to that below, you could drag and drop in chords, songs, and phrases and adjust them within this Main window. You could incorporate Edit, Chord, Pad and Mod within the same window.

Ok, a bit much for Scaler 3, but an idea for future development.

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I recognise the snip, as I use deCoda all the time, and for some tasks it’s far more useful than Scaler. However, the reason for that is, IMHO, the applications are as different as chalk and cheese, and (again from my very personal perspective) i see little overlap between them. I can see where you are coming from (and they are valid points) but it’s hard to see how either would move towards the architecture of the other.

{1} The first key significant difference is that deCoda is wholly focussed on the audio domain (‘midi’ is mentioned only twice in the manual, neither with a functional role) whereas Scaler is wholly focussed on the midi domain. They deal with different things. Scaler works with audio only to enable audio to midi transformation, and hence it is unlikely to offer any of the things deCoda does. The reverse is true - deCoda can’t do everything (actually, more or less nothing) that Scaler does.

{2} The second major difference (and the reason I am frequently using deCoda} is that time is not recognised by Scaler (I suspect with good reason), only changes in input. However, detecting timing drives much use of deCoda, as people use it (for example) to get song sheets of tracks want to play. The only real midi aspect of deCoda is that it can produce and incredibly badly formatted print of the same.

{3} One big difference is that deCoda dumbs down the chord recognition. By and large, it senses only triads, and occasionally something like a 7th. Scaler is significantly better here, sometimes over the top for some extensions.

I don’t see how your suggestion of editing a composite track waveform in the audio domain would work. The main window shows composite audio of potentially n different instruments overlaid with multiple processing effects. Imagine some section has been detected as G major within an audio stream consolidating three guitars, synth, keyboard , sax , drums etc, all playing several parts. How could you take out that G major stream and replace it with an E minor one? Once you have mixed paint, you can’t un-mix it.

{4} Finally, there is ‘philosophy’. deCoda is not (in my view) a composition tool, and is wholly reactive. Conversely, composition is the heart and soul of Scaler, its very raison d’etre.

Don’t get me wrong, and please don’t take this as a criticism of your post; its not intended to be. Audio detection in Scaler needs work, and the devs know that. I see where you are coming from, but I can’t see how it can be credibly achieved in the way suggested. However, there is a reason why I turn to deCoda frequently rather than use Scaler, and that makes your point very valid.


A good application, for example, to practice a specific part of a cover song that you can’t hear clearly or if you want to slow down the tempo and distinguish your instrument better from other instruments. Often that program also says the wrong chords and it doesn’t always know how to divide the beats correctly.


Hi @panda,
Thanks for taking the time to reply with such a great post!

You are right, it is deCoda, and I came across it at Plugin boutique.

Let me say that I was not promoting deCoda. I was just using the layout to help visualise the idea.

Scaler is a Compositional Tool and deCoda is Song Deconstruction Tool. However, I don’t see that the two forms couldn’t be incorporated into one application.

I’m always amazed at how different apps/plugins constantly evolve while seemingly doing the same thing. I’m sure there is the ‘I must buy the latest…’ grip for many, which is most likely more money originated than an invaluable improvement needed.

However, new developments and technologies always inevitably enhance these apps/plugins. What wasn’t possible yesterday will be possible tomorrow.

I’m not suggesting editing multi-tracks, but I do like the possibility and with Sync now as an option. We are editing tracks in Scaler now.

I’m used to seeing a timeline, beat, bars, and other information. Maybe if Section A displayed in this standard format, it would help. Modifying timing and chords etc, would be the next step.

I’m with you, I don’t know how this could be built, but I’m sure there are those far more clever than me who could. You only have to look at some of the fantastic Software available now to be in awe of the possibility of what will be here very soon.

Not too long ago, could you have imagined Scaler? Look how it has developed so far. It surely can’t be completed, can it?

We had the best motorbike industry in the World. The manufacturers thought it would always be that way. They didn’t change that much, a new look maybe. The Japanese motorbike industry made and continues to make improvements. They added an ignition starter, so there is no more kick-starting anymore. There isn’t a British Motorbike Industry anymore.

The computer industry is changing exponentially. The speed of change doubles at a minimum every year.

If Software doesn’t keep up and evolve, it won’t be here long.

Hi @Hulkko

I agree deCoda is ok with what it does, but it does have problems, what software doesn’t?

I was not promoting deCoda. I was using the layout to help visualise my idea.

As an example of change, many of my music friends used Capo and moved to deCoda, because it was often better at what it did. I’m sure the developers of deCoda, used Capo and other similar software too.

All creators of software must inspire to produce the best they can to address a given challenge and continually assess for improvements for the users.

In my youth, I had at one time a BSA Gold Star (500cc single) and a Norton Dominator 650. I then moved to a Honda CB77 with its button start, and as you said it all changed. I somehow missed coming back after a ride without oil splattered on my jeans.

However, we shouldn’t forget that Dorna Sports dropped Honda for the current Triumph (a name from the BSA / Norton era) triple for the World Moto2 Championship stock engine, so British bike engineering is not totally dead!

BSA Gold Star. Brilliant! My first was a 1968 BSA Bantam… loved it!

You’re right; it’s not totally dead, just absorbed!

Enfield is now owned and still built in India. :neutral_face:

All the best

this would be a GREAT feature, but im kind of afraid that would consume much more resources of ours pcs… and the hard drive too… scaler 2 till now its very light for all the things it can do.