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Tracktion Review - Part 3

FiltersApplying effects or adding instruments (all of which Tracktion aggregates under the common term of filters) to the output of a track means just clicking on the new filter icon at the top of the screen and dragging it down to where you want it. Once you drop it into place then a list of all available filters is displayed from which you can select the one you want. There are several built-in filters including reverb, equalisation, volume and pan, chorus, level meter and pitch shifter, and to those can be added a whole myriad of soft synths, drum machines and other effects either freely available or costing anything from a few pounds up to several hundred.

By default, a new track will always contain a volume/pan filter, a level meter and a mute/solo switch. Only the latter is permanently attached to the track. You can add several filters to a track and even several of the same type! For instance, you may wish to add a level meter after each other filter to see if one is adversly affecting the overall volume. If the filter area gets a bit cramped for space then it can be expanded by dragging the blue vertical bar that will appear if you hover the mouse between the tracks and filters.

Setting the volumeAdjusting panThe volume/pan filter fits two operations into one tiny screen area. If you move the mouse over the black horizontal bar then it turns white (see picture left) and dragging the mouse left or right changes the stereo placement of that track. Clicking in the body brings up the volume slider as shown right. Of course, with the filter selected, you also have the option to control its settings in the lower section of the screen.

The volume/pan controls also act as Tracktion's mixer and there is no separate mixer provided. Personally, that is fine with me though some users and reviewers of the software find it a strange omission. The jury is still out as to whether Jules will install a 'proper' mixer one day. If so, then I hope that we have the option to turn it off!

Filters already added to a track can be moved around, changed to another quite different filter and, of course, deleted. If a filter has been positioned and set up on one track then it can be copied to another track by holding the control key down while dragging it to that track. It will retain all of the settings as set on the source track.