Bindings using midi keyboard buttons

I have had a confused night. I want to bind four vst instruments individually so that I can swap between each instrument during a performance.

  1. Do I set up the routing for all four instruments on the monitor together, or one at a time?
  2. I have an M Audio keyboard to trigger each binding.
  3. How do I set the binding information to move easily between each instrument by pressing a midi button on my keyboard?

Thanks. I have read a lot and watched a lot, just need some help.


Hi Packhorse,

If I understand correctly you want to swap instruments so only one VSTi is playing at a time. To do this you require several groups of bindings and I think it would be best to do this using the enable/disable on each input route to each VSTi. In my examples that follow you see that the 4 VSTis have a common keyboard input port and all routes have the same source name.

To do this way of switching you need to rename each input route source to your choice of name so that the bindings you make will have target names you provided in this step. Select the route and then F2 on the qwerty keyboard to rename the routes. As you see the original route source name is ammended to include the name you gave it.

Once that is done your Routing tab should look something like this

Next you go to the bindings pane and create 4 groups of bindings to switch the input routes you named. The input routes you renamed will appear in the target list when you make the bindings.

Each incoming button has to turn on a Vsti and turn the other 3 OFF so there are 4 bindings per group and each group has different target values for the particular Vst you want to send notes to.

Another way to go if you wanted to layer would be to use toggle on each route like this.

Hopefully one of these ways will do it.




Thank you Dave. Very helpful.

If you use the Performer edition (highly recommended if you are planning to use Cantabile in a live setting), you can use Song States to achieve that very easily. Create four separate states, each with the input routing configured to the specific instrument. Looks like this:

For each of the routes from MIDI in to the instrument, you need to set the state behavior of “Enabled” to “on” - now song states can automatically turn these routes on or off.

Next, you need a mechanism to switch song states from buttons (or drum pads) on your MIDI controller. For this example, I’m using MIDI CC 90-93, but of course you can use any CC or also note on commands.

Now whenever you trigger a CC 90-93 with a value > 0 on your controller, Cantabile will switch to the respective song state, which is configured to play the specific instrument. Of course, you can also configure splits and layers in additional song states; feel free to go completely crazy :wink:




Hi Torsten,

Correct me if I’m wrong on this but I’m pretty sure I did the bindings to song states with single routes to the one each of the 8 loaded VST’s in Solo.

EDIT - one of the minor reasons I finally upgraded to Performer was to not have to ask the above question. :grinning:

that would be surprising - AFAIK, Solo doesn’t have Song States…

1 Like

You would know better than I (because you are a Cantabile guru :grinning:)

Solo has bindings but not song states.


Song state is a very simple and effective way to do this. You put it in learn mode, send a single midi PC and that’s it.

I use a midi keyboard that allows changing midi-out channel by pressing “up” or “down.” . It works like a breese when it is only a matter of changing between 3 og 4 instruments. No bindings necessary. Just edit each midi route, so that each midi channel only goes to one particular VST. Takes only seconds to set up.


Hi John,

Welcome to the forum. I originally used C3 Lite and had a single song with my 8 instruments loaded and I switched between them by only enabling one at a time (clicking the Run/Suspend Mode Indicator on the “plugin slot” for that instrument. It was just something I got in a habit of doing while in my studio so on my first forays playing out I just continued with that method. Required some fiddly mouse clicking so I upgraded to Performer so I could use the pads on the keyboard with bindings to song states to change the active route between the keyboard and the desired instrument plugin.



Oh, I see. I still do the same as you used to do - not with the mouse, but with bindings and keystrokes, such as “P” for turning piano on and off. Perfect for layering two or more sound, - like “ooh”-choir, organ, acoustic guitar. This way I can use very basic and slim keyboards without pads. Instead I have either my laptop or an extra USB computer keyboard next to me.