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Marker exchange

If you deal session exchange between DAWs as much as I do, you might wonder what is the best method to exchange markers. Many times the only thing missing from a session is the marker information, which can be a pretty big hurdle if you have a mid- to big session. Fortunately nowadays every DAW offers some kind of marker export/import. Yes, here’s the trap. As usual, almost every DAW use different protocols or methods for exporting/importing markers, so we need a solution.

What format?

At first I tried to search for a universally accepted format so that I wouldn’t need to convert file formats in order to get meaningful marker information. I quickly realised that this “universally accepted” format is highly unlikely to show up, so moved on to other solutions I found a great and very reliable method.

Edimarker

A great donation-ware software form Sounds in Sync which perfectly and easily convert different marker files into other cryptic formats, so it doesn’t really matter if you’re a Pro Tools or Nuendo or any other DAW user, this little utility can help you (and me).

Edimarker features:

  • Loads marker data from MIDI files generated by Pro Tools, tab-delimited text files and
  • Nuendo CSV marker files
  • Exports marker data as a tab-delimited text files or MIDI files
  • Reads and writes marker locations in timecode, footages or minutes and seconds
  • Sets the text encoding to enable transfer of non-English characters

For example I just export a CVS file from Nuendo, throw it in into Edimarker and export it into a midi file. After this I can easily import the midi file into Pro Tools, which cleverly see the information, so it won’t make a midi track, but put the information onto your marker bar. It may sound a bit complicated, but believe me it’s very-very easy and it only takes a minute to get the perfect result.

edimarker

One thing you have to be aware of is the format in which you export your marker list from the DAW. It’s important because Edimarker sometimes needs some minor preference adjustment in order to correctly “see” the information. For example if you export the markers in utf–8 coding, then in Edimarker you may have to set up that the incoming marker info file coded in that particular format. If you forget to adjust it before the conversion, you’ll be getting an error message. It’s only a message so don’t be afraid of it, the only thing you have to do is to adjust the prefs. After you’re done with it, Edimarker will happily and more importantly correctly decode the information from the exported marker file.

Now you get a list which shows you the markers, and now hit export, name the file and you’re good to go. Import the result into your choice of DAW and use it. That’s it, it’s really that easy.

How to do it in Pro Tools

The import part is pretty easy and obvious. The export part is a bit trickier, but still, it’s easy. Obviously you need some markers presented in the session. Now add a new midi track right under the markers (the midi track shall be the first track in your session), select the midi track and simply export the midi file.

miditr mexp

After this, you can import this into Edimarker and save it as a text file for example. That’s it, you’ve got your markers exported and converted in a minute. As I always need marker information on different platforms, now I have the habit of always export a “marker track” from every DAW. It can come very handy.

If you happen to like and use Edimarker a lot, and if you can, support this great utility with some donation.