Dave, there’s quite a few examples in various programmes (most commercial i think) of editable multiple midi channels per track. The easiest (and this could well be just subjective on my part) is a drop list of midi channels and pick one. At this point, options diversify, with some programmes then showing only the selected channel, and others merely highlighting the selected channel for edit.
Personally, i’d opt every time for a ‘highlighted’ editable channel, because it would enable me to match up instrument articulations, i.e., 1st violins downbow=mcha1, 1st violins upbow=mcha2. Being able to see both, or as another example, complex chord structures across instrument assigned channels, would be extremely useful.
In addition, with shortcuts for each channel, either qwerty or cc based(midi channels able to be switched from a second midikbd, or a dedicated control surface.) a user would be able to dedicate a port per track, and edit various channels, articulations, etc. from within the inline editor, including, if possible, changing the midi channel of a note. So a user would play a line in for say strings, then go back and assign the right channel for each note to trigger a particular articulation. (Another mention for a great step forward, inline editing.) Matching string bow positions is a pain at the best of times, but in a multiple midi channel per track paradigm, much of that pain is allayed, with simple qwerty or midikbd keyswitched channel allocation per note. (violins downbow=mcha1, violins upbow=mcha2, etc…)
As for why we would want mutiple channels per track, and why not just 1 track=1 channel? Well, my full orchestra template runs to 300+ tracks if 1 channel=1 track. On top of that, there’s the routing for all those tracks, and of course,a lot of scrolling. If i want to double the flute with the 1st violin in this scenario, there’s a long way to travel down the canvas to get there, and that takes a considerable amount of time.
If all my 1st violin articulations can be put into ‘port’ tracks,each with 16 channels, then i would use about 4 tracks, instead of over 60.
Makes a big difference when doing film or orchestral work.
And i guess you could say, better to have this option than not. After all, if you want just 1 channel, you have it, and don’t lose anything, and with the option, multiple channel per track users get to join in as well.
Here’s a screenshot of just one way of doing this, in a midi editor. In the top left of the image, you’ll see a drop down list of channels, including all. Each channel (including all) is key shortcut assignable, both in qwerty, and cc midi. (I have this setup to be switched from the black and whites on a second midikbd i use as a control surface.)