Can I use different audio interfaces?

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I use the same laptop (and same instance of Cantabile) to operate both my studio setup and my gig rig. The problem is they both have different audio interfaces. The issue I am facing is when I set up my setlist in the studio (lets call it interface A), everything is bound to that interface. In order to switch to my gig rig, I have to change all the songs over to interface B, then change it back for the studio again. This leads to some misses and mistakes. The other option is to maintain two seperate set lists which makes it difficult to duplicate changes.

Am I missing an easier way to just “plug in” a different interface and contabile would know how to route?

Howdy from Buda, TX. The trick is to get the port names matching on both interfaces. I use a Presonus for Studio work, 2 different Behringers for practice, and an RME for live. All of the port names in Cantabile match, or are run through a rack where I only have to change them in one place. Did that make sense? I never have to change the songs.


There are plenty of discussions about this in the forum, but if I remember correctly (and the Real Torsten will definitely help out if I didn’t) then there are RackedBrains suggestion about using the same name for the ports. An alternative is to use the background rack, and then send the input from the different interfaces to a loopback port; you can create a midi port (in the configuration) for this. But be aware that a loopback port requires one audio cycle, i.e. it introduces a little latency. The last method I am aware of is to create a dedicated input rack, that you include in all your songs (could be part of a template), and the input rack takes the input directly from the interfaces and directs it to the same output port of that rack. If you make that rack a linked rack, then you can use it in all songs, and if something should happen and you need to change the interface settings, then there is only one place you need to make the change.

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Hi. It is certainly possible as per the posts above. I seamlessly move Cantabile sets from my DAW PC to GIG PC which have different audio and MIDI interfaces. For me having the same names for ports on both computers mapped to the respective hardware does the trick

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The trick is to create ports named for their function, not a specific interface – e.g. Mic in, Backing track out, Piano out, etc. Then in the port definition on each computer, assign these to the appropriate physical port. (You can also have multiple configurations on each computer, for example if you use different hardware for different shows.)
– Jimbo



Just echoing the suggestions above: keep the names for your audio output ports generic (e.g. Main Speakers, Monitor Out, Guitar Input, …) and then assign them to physical ports in the “Audio Ports” dialog. Important: this dialog allows different assignments for different audio devices:

So set up your laptop with your studio interface - connect it and select the corresponding audio driver in the “Audio Engine” settings. Then assign its audio ports to “Main Speakers” and all your other outputs as needed in the “Audio Ports” settings.

Next, connect your live interface, select the corresponding audio driver in “Audio Engine” and then make new assignments for “Main Speakers” etc with the physical ports of your live interface.

Now whenever you switch from studio to live mode, the only thing you need to do is change the “Audio Engine” settings to select the correct interface, and then “Main Speakers” etc will be routed to the correct interface port.

So you should create all your songs with routes to “Main Speakers” (and other generic ports like “Guitar In”, “Monitor Out” etc.) - you won’t have to change anything in your songs when moving from studio to live and back.




Here’s a real-life example from my setup: for my rock project, I use an RME Babyface in my live rack, so I assign the ports to the Babyface inputs and outputs:

In my R&B project, I use a leaner setup with a Zoom UAC-2:

Same ports, different hardware assignments - all my songs work with no problem!

Only exception being the Guitar Preamp output - I don’t use a guitar in my R&B setup, so not a problem that the clean PreOut is routed to the same output as the processed signal. For my rock band, use a backup interface with four output ports so I can have separate outputs for keys, guitar (processed), guitar (pre-out) and monitor - same Cantabile ports, different audio engine and different assignments…

Hope this helps!




Thanks for all the responses. I guess it makes sense in theory, but not in practice yet… I have not made any major reconfiguration changes yet. Is there a way to back up the config to get me back to square one if I royally mess it up?

Is there a way to back up the config to get me back to square one if I royally mess it up?

Yes. The challenge is to find the directory you need to back up. Fortunately, C3 makes that easy:

It’s really the 3 .json files. The log files aren’t necessary except for trouble shooting. If it makes you feel better, you can make a copy of the settings directory. Different people have different approaches. I replicate it, some people use github, others cloud services. The main thing is get the settings.json file. The plugins.json files are handy but not absolutely necessary.

BTW, even if you don’t back up, the “lastgood” files may be able to rescue you. I usually am two or three steps down the road before I discover I really made a mess. By then “lastgood” is really “lastbad” :slight_smile:



Thanks. Yea that’s me, I might be 3 or 4 versions into it before I figured out I don’t like it or I royally messed it up.

Thanks for all the replies. For the most part, I think I figured it out. I labeled the audio inputs something generic like “line 1, line 2” etc. and the MIDI ports and just MIDI IN/OUT. Then connected eatch interace and Sorted out the audio and midi bindings. Now all need to do is just change the audio engine.