MIDI note selecting Ardour 4.0

I’m a new user of Ardour (4.0.358) with Ubuntu Studio. How can I add various notes to an existing selection in midi-edit-mode?
The manual (Ardour 3 ?) says: “To add or remove a note to/from the selection, click Ctrl LEFT.” But in this edit mode this will cause Ardour 4 to DRAFT notes…
Is there a manual for Ardour 4? Because also other actions in Ardour 4 midi editing seem to be different from the manual.

I am not sure how to do what you are describing, but I would point out there exists no such version as 4.0.358. I think you are using a 3.5 branch. The current version is 4.1, and there have been numerous improvements to MIDI since version 3. I would recommend upgrading and seeing if you are able accomplish what you want with the newest version. If not, maybe someone else here can give a better answer.

The version number was right. I compiled it myself from git for having the newest one. Now I updated to version 4.1 - same problem with adding single midi notes to an existing selection.

I stand corrected. The number 4.0.358 resembled 3.5.308, which was the version originally packaged with Ubuntu Studio 14.04 LTS. As a new user of Ardour, I assumed you had installed an official release provided by your chosen distribution. Sorry I wasn’t able to help.

Did you see http://manual.ardour.org/editing-and-arranging/edit-midi/add-new-notes/ ?

PS. Ardour versions are MAJOR dot MINOR dot git-changes-since-minor-version-bump.

Yes, I have seen http://manual.ardour.org/editing-and-arranging/edit-midi/add-new-notes. But this seems to refer to Ardour 3, because in Ardour 4 there is no “mouse object mode” and I cannot find “Note Level Editing”. Instead there is a “Draw mode” and “Internal edit mode”.
The announcement of the new features of Ardour 4 says: “NEW modeless editing model” - but I cannot find a description.

After trying again my result: In “Draw mode” selecting and deselecting by click Ctrl LEFT works fine. But it is difficult to catch short notes, when the grid (=input length) is set to longer units, because the (long) cursor covers the short notes. And if you don’t catch the note you have a new one…

In “Internal edit mode” selecting by click Ctrl LEFT works, but deselecting doesn’t work. Also selecting groups of notes by click Shift LEFT does’nt work in this mode (but works in “Draw mode”).

But this seems to refer to Ardour 3, because in Ardour 4 there is no "mouse object mode"

Object mode is the default mode, obtained by pressing ‘O’ or by clicking on the Hand icon in the box of icons.

For more reading on that see here…


The editing modes can be selected by clicking on the buttons pointed at by the label ‘Toolbar’ in the image on this page…


Do I know for certain this will answer your question? Nope, but it does answer a few things in your latest post.


It is (design) bug and it needs fixing.

In Ardour 4 after pressing ‘O’ nothing happens. The Hand icon is activated by ‘G’ and is now called “Grab mode”. So the manual is not up to date in that point.
(Range mode still exists. But I cannot find the zoom mode and gain edit mode of the description in the manual. Instead there is “Cut mode”. Time fx mode is called now “Stretch mode”.)

Changing pitch values of midi notes with arrow up/down button in the “Draw mode” and “Internal edit mode” sometimes works, somtimes doesn’t work (especially with more than one note selected.). Changing shift distance to one octave by pressing SHIFT never works.
Changing velocity values with arrow up/down+Ctrl button sometimes works, somtimes doesn’t work. Same problem like changing pitch values.
Changing channel doesn’t work with shortcut “C” (This activates Cut mode.)
Quantization shortcuts “Q” and “Alt+Q” don’t work.

So again my question: Is there a manual of Ardour “4”? (Different from Ardour 3) Or are this bugs?


The manual is a CONSTANT work in progress. It will never be done because Ardour itself is never done. YOu are free however to submit a change if you desire, submit a pull request through Github is probably the easiest way (Will take a little bit of learning if you are not used to Github, or git, but thanks to Github’s inline editor on their site, you really don’t need to touch git honestly).

Thank you for the correction though, I do need to change that in the manual, I haven’t gotten used to all the changes thus far in keybindings, and frankly am generally not doing much with MIDI editing in general.


There is only 1 manual. And I’ve said above that your original report is a design bug and it needs fixing.

Q does not and has never quantized selected notes; it only quantizes a selected region. This might change.

Our MIDI editing workflow is subject to continual evolution, and we have no dedicated documentation writers. The manual will likely never be accurate, let alone complete.

So I look forward to further improvements of the MIDI editing (what would be crucial for my projects.) Thank you very much.

For the manual: Maybe there should be a hint on every page, that the manual is “work in progress”. Because ‘x42’ an ‘seablade’ referred to pages of the manual for helping me, but in that case it was more confusing, because the description in these chapters was different from the actual behaviour of Ardour 4.