Is it not possible to edit the EXISTING beats/parts on a BeatBuddy?

I have looked around a lot in these forums and elsewhere, so I am pretty sure the answer is “No”, but before I return it I need to know because the device is so good in almost every other respect.

Am I the only one who thinks it bizarre that in order to get new content, one must find - create - download MIDI files from somewhere, that may or may not work well with the BeatBuddy, and then tune or fix or edit those files with other software . . . .all as opposed to being able to open the individual pieces already on the BeatBuddy and rearrange the content (NOT shuffling the existing parts, but changing what instruments play on what beats)?

The BeatBuddy SD card and the SD card backup includes all the midi files used to create the songs. You can edit those as much as you like import them back into a song. Below is a reply from BeatBuddy support on if the midi files could be extracted from the sng files.

OK . . .what am I missing here? Your response says I can edit the MIDI files from the SD card, but the support response you quote says that " . . the sng files can’t be deconstructed."

Correct, which is why they included the midi files on the SD card, but if you download a user created sng file you cannot edit its midi content. Apologies if the post confused you.

This helps (and I just extracted the MIDI files to a separate directory), but if I am following your suggestion, now I need to find another piece of software to do the MIDI editing, learn to use it, modify the BeatBuddy files to be what I want, and then learn how to save the corrected files back to the BeatBuddy, hoping all the while that they will sound right - instead of being able to just move snare/bass drum/cymbal notes within an already-existing file, with the Manager software. Sorry, but that seems thoroughly absurd to me.

That is currently the way it works. If you want to edit the midi files you need a program designed to do that - the choice is varied and there are plenty of free ones. While editing the midi file ensure the notes are supported, then save as a midi file and add to a song in the BB.

See some more threads below that should help you through the process.

Editing notes in midi files note by note is known as step editing. On drum machines like an Alesis SR18 they have a built in step editor but I quickly found it’s not much fun working on hardware drum machines from an LCD with menu buttons looking for a kit sounds and time stamps. Step edited midis also tend to always sound like a robot or machine gun with quantizing and require a lot of manual tweaking that may end up in the end still sounding like garbage. Midi editing using software is the answer to that and much more flexible, but it is an an investment in time etc. for that flexibility.

To avoid editing midi’s, loop packs are your friend, but as noted they need to be compatible. GrooveMonkee loops can now be used the same way as the BB content. To have a simple, no editing, audition of loops you could use BBM to create audition songs and load a bunch of main loops from BB or GM packs per genre etc. Setting just the main pattern, or adding compatible fills per part, you could start the audition song with song parts (each pattern to audition) controlled by the pedal instead of fiddling with knobs to select songs and audition different patterns by transitioning from part1 to part2 etc. The below shows a project loaded with new songs arranged just for auditioning. I’ve found that the last thing I want to do is edit midi’s until after I’m sure I don’t have a loop that already does the job and I’ve probably paid five times what the BB cost for loop packs over the years while working with software to be sure I do as little as possible midi editing up front to get the main parts of a song nailed up. Better to have one good beat all the way through than never get to play because you can’t get a step edit to sound good. I think of editing of existing midis as enhancements to vary fills etc based on a good pattern, not the start of how to get the pattern.