Standard MIDI files

Standard MIDI files are not specific to a particular sequencing program, hardware sequencer, or type of computer. They contain the following information:

  • MIDI events, including time positions and channel assignments

  • Names of the individual tracks

  • Names and positions of markers

  • Tempo changes

  • Copyright marks

Logic Pro allows you to import, open, and export Standard MIDI file formats 0 and 1:

  • Format 0 contains all data in one track.

  • Format 1 can contain multiple tracks, each with independent data.

Neither format recognizes any division of a track (into several MIDI regions, for example).

Import a MIDI file at the playhead position

Do one of the following:

  • Choose File > Import > MIDI File, then select a file in the dialog that appears.

  • Locate and select the MIDI file in the All Files Browser, then click Import.

The MIDI file is placed at the playhead position, rounded to bars.

Import a MIDI file at the pointer position

  • Drag a MIDI file from the All Files Browser or Finder into the Tracks area.

The pointer position—when the mouse button is released—determines the position (rounded to the nearest bar) and destination of the first track in the imported file.

Open a MIDI file

  1. Choose File > Open (or use the corresponding key command, default assignment: Command-O), then select a MIDI file in the dialog that appears.

    Note: If you choose the MIDI files option in the File Type pop-up menu, only MIDI files are displayed in the dialog.

  2. If a project is loaded, a dialog asks if you want to create a new environment or copy the current environment for the MIDI file. Do one of the following:

    • To replicate the existing environment: Click Copy. The tracks of the MIDI file are automatically assigned to suitable instruments.

    • To load the environment of the default project template: Click New.

The MIDI file is loaded as a new project that contains all MIDI events—inclusive of time positions and channel assignments, names of individual tracks, names and positions of markers, tempo changes, and copyright marks. The copyright mark is read as marker text. As a default behavior, Logic Pro automatically creates software instrument tracks for each MIDI track, and assigns an appropriate GarageBand instrument to each, when you open a MIDI file. If you want to use external MIDI tracks for each MIDI track, press Option while opening the MIDI file.

Prepare all MIDI regions for a Standard MIDI file export

  1. Select all MIDI regions by choosing Edit > Select All (or press Command-A).

  2. Normalize all playback parameters by Control-clicking a MIDI region, then choosing MIDI > Normalize Region Parameters from the shortcut menu.

  3. Convert all playback quantization by choosing Functions > MIDI Region Parameters > Apply Quantization Permanently.

  4. Convert all aliases into real copies by choosing Functions > Region Alias > Convert Alias to a Copy.

  5. Convert all MIDI regions on each track into a continuous MIDI region by choosing Edit > Join > Regions per Tracks.

    Note: Because Standard MIDI file type 0 format files can only save one MIDI region, you must also merge all MIDI regions into one if you want to export in file format 0. You can do this by choosing Edit > Join > Regions.

  6. Insert all instrument MIDI settings as events by choosing Functions > Insert Instrument MIDI settings as Events.

Save MIDI regions as a Standard MIDI file

  1. Select all of the MIDI regions you want to save.

  2. Choose File > Export > Selection as MIDI File.

  3. Choose the destination directory, enter a name, then click Save. The selected MIDI regions are saved as a Format 1 MIDI file.

Note: Remember that most hardware sequencers can only read MS-DOS formatted disks, so limit your filename to an 8.3 character name; for example, “proj0001.MID.”

Save a MIDI region in file format 0

  1. Select the “‘Export MIDI File…’ saves single MIDI Regions as Format 0” checkbox in the Logic Pro > Preferences > General > Project Handling pane.

  2. Select a MIDI region, then choose File > Export > Selection as MIDI File.