M-Audio M-Track Eight - Getting Started with Cubase LE 7
The M-Audio M-Track Eight includes Steinberg's Cubase LE 7 professional music production software. With this combination, you have turned your PC or Mac computer into a high quality recording and production studio. This guide will get you up and running with the M-Track Eight and Cubase, from installation to recording your first tracks!
Table of Contents
- Downloading and Installing Cubase LE 7
- Initial setup for the M-Track Eight in Cubase LE 7
- Basic Audio Recording in Cubase LE 7
- Further Technical Support
NOTE: Some pictures in this guide will include blurred out or generic authorization codes. Also, depending on whether you are using a Mac or Windows computer, some menus may appear slightly different. However, all the instructions remain the same for both Mac and Windows users!
- Let's begin by visiting the Steinberg website to create a new account (or log in if you already have one).
- Click the Create account and get Cubase LE 7 now! button.
- Either choose to create an account or log in to an existing account. If creating a new account, Steinberg will send you an activation email and instructions to complete the process.
- After logging into your account, you will be directed to a page where you can enter your Download Access Code. This code is found at the bottom of Software Download Instructions card included with the M-Track Eight (highlighted in orange below).
- You will then be directed to a confirmation that your Download Code has been registered. You will be provided Mac and Windows download links for Cubase LE 7 and, most importantly, your Activation Code for Cubase LE 7. You should write this code down or highlight and copy it, as we'll need this to activate Cubase LE 7 later. Note that this is different from the Download Code you used previously.
- Click the button to download the Mac or Windows installer. Steinberg has provided this download in a ZIP file. After the download is complete, this folder will need to be extracted.
- For Windows 7, 8 users, simply locate the Cubase_LE_7_Installer_win file in your Downloads folder. Open this folder and drag the Cubase LE 7 folder to your desktop. This will automatically extract the folder and provide an icon like below:
Open this folder and double click Start_Center to begin installation. Please follow the onscreen instructions to Install the software.
- For Mac OSX users, simply double click the Cubase_LE_7_Installer_mac.dmg file from your Downloads folder. A new window will appear shortly with a Start Center icon. Double click this to begin and following the instructions to Install the software.
- Now we need to activate the Cubase LE 7 software. Let's begin by opening the eLicenser Control Center (eLCC) which can be found in the following folders:
Windows: Computer / OS (C:) / Programs Files (x86) / eLicenser / eLCC
Mac OSX: Applications folder
- When you open the eLCC, ignore or cancel any messages regarding "Online Synchronization & Maintenance". Click the Enter Activation Code button in the top left corner.
- Enter the Activation Code for Cubase LE 7 that you obtained on Step 5 (NOT the Download Code that you received with your M-Track Eight). You will see Cubase LE 7 appear in the box below. Click Continue.
- You will now see a Select eLicenser window appear. Select the Soft-eLicenser (SeL) item from the left column and click the Download License button in the bottom right corner.
- A new window will display the License Download progress. Click the Close button in the bottom right hand corner when the license download is successful. Please be patient, as this can take a few minutes.
- You may now close the eLicenser Control Center. Cubase LE 7 is now activated!
NOTE: Your Cubase LE 7 download code, download links, and activation will always be available on your Steinberg account on the My Products section. From here you can re-download the Cubase LE 7 software, transfer your activation from one computer to another, or submit a request for Steinberg technical support with Cubase.
Attention Windows users, make sure to download and install the M-Track Eight drivers before opening Cubase LE 7 for the first time. All current M-Track Eight drivers can be found from the link below.
- Now we're ready to open Cubase LE 7! Windows users will see an icon on the desktop labeled Cubase LE AI Elements 7. For Mac users, Cubase LE AI Elements 7 will be found in the Applications folder.
- The first time you open Cubase LE 7, the software will automatically scan for virtual instruments and effects plugins on your computer. Consequently, the first time opening Cubase may take a few moments. On rare occasions, Cubase may close or crash during startup if it has trouble scanning a particular 3rd party plugin. No worries! Simply re-launching Cubase LE 7 will allow it to move past these errors and continue loading.
- After this initial loading is complete, Cubase LE 7 may bring up an audio configuration window. Click the Cancel button to bypass this. The Steinberg Hub screen will now open. There are several different "templates" you can begin your Cubase projects or sessions with. For this guide, we will start with an empty project. Click the More icon in the top right hand corner, select Empty from the list below, then click the Create button in the bottom right hand corner.
- The main Cubase window will now open. From the top bar, select Devices > Device Setup
- In the left column, select VST Audio System. Then if it is not already, select M-Audio M-Track Eight ASIO (Windows) or M-Track Eight (Mac) from the ASIO Driver drop down at the top right corner.
- You may see the warning Do you want to switch the ASIO driver? Select Switch.
- Now, in the left column, select M-Audio M-track Eight ASIO. You should see a list of all available inputs and outputs from your M-Track Eight listed in the right column. Each port will be given a generic name, "In 1, In 2, etc...". We recommend changing the names in the Show As column as shown in the picture below "M-Track In 1, M-Track In 2, etc...". This will help make the rest of the setup and configuring future projects much easier.
- Once you've renamed the ports, click the OK button at the bottom right to close the window.
- Now that Cubase has configured the M-Track Eight as its sound card, we want to tell Cubase which inputs and outputs from the M-Track Eight we'd like use. From the top menu bar, navigate to Devices>VST Connections. Cubase defaults to use the first two inputs and the first two outputs of any sound card. You will see this reflected in the VST Connections menus for Inputs and Outputs.
- Now you'll want to decide how many inputs and outputs you'll be using, and whether they will be stereo or mono. Cubase provides a number of presets in the Inputs and Outputs section that make it easy to properly route the audio from your M-Track Eight. In both the Inputs or Outputs section, click the Presets drop down menu and select a configuration.
- As an example, if we select 2 x Stereo + 4 x Mono, we'll see these lines added below and the corresponding M-Track Eight inputs/outputs automatically assigned.
- Of course, your configuration needs will be different. It is best to name each bus in the left Bus Name column as seen below. You will see why this helps in a moment.
- To save your custom I/O configuration as a Preset, click the + sign next to the preset drop down. Type in a name and click OK to save.
- Close the VST Connections window when you're done. Now we're ready to add tracks and record some music!
- Now that we are back to our empty project, it's time to add some audio tracks. From the top menu bar, select Project>Add Track>Audio
- You may now select how many tracks you'd like to add and whether they will be mono or stereo. For our example, we'll select 4 mono tracks and click Add Track.
- You'll now see four audio tracks added to the main project view. See the picture below to help with selecting which inputs these tracks are assigned to.
- After the track inputs are assigned, select the "Track Arm" and "Monitor" buttons.
- Now we're ready to record! Find the Transport Bar. If you do not see it, from the top menu bar, navigate to Transport>Transport Panel.
- Click the Record button and perform your hit song! You will see the audio "regions" being created as you record. Press the Stop button when you're done and congratulations, you're a recording artist!
Cubase LE 7 is an extremely powerful recording program! To make the most of it, the Operation Manual is the best resource. Here are links to download Steinberg's Cubase LE 7 documentation:
If you need further support with your M-Track Eight or if you just have pre-sales questions, the M-Audio technical support team is available to help!
Visit the link below to connect with any of the following support options: online community support, phone support, email support.