Controller Visual Feedback

What are the options for getting feedback from Cantabile as to the current state of settings (Gain, Enabled, things like that) that may be buried down inside racks?

I’ve surfed this forum and come up with things like the Controller Bar, Roman Kubiak’s ctrlr project on GitHub, Torsten’s LivePrompter and MIDIAlert apps, and a few others … but I’m not clear on the status or applicability if these various efforts, so I’m hoping to get a recommendation …

I’m using a Faderfox EC4 essentially as a mixer - to control the dozen important aspects of my ever-complexifying rig setups. Some channel mutes, a flock of faders, reverb levels. However, there is no on-screen feedback, unless I rummage around the interface, which ain’t happnin live.

I’d love some kind of display that I could see the current status of things I select … And I could tie additional bindings to those display elements to keep them updated.

I suspect what I want are elements in the Controller bar, but I cannot seem to locate documentation on using the Controller Bar as a binding target …

Hi Clint,

The ‘Onscreen Keyboard’ is the target port you want for the Controller Bar, it also covers the Show Notes screen. See this thread, there are some ideas there too.


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Stupendously outstanding!

Dynamic control values are easy to render in the Controller Bar and the Show Notes. The Controller Bar is far preferable for my needs.

Have not found a way to do the following things, which would really spiff up my display … if anyone has a way to do these, I would love to hear it …

  • Change the size of the text on the Controller Bar - both the prompts and the text in the buttons (discussed in this post).

  • Dynamically control the formatting of text in the buttons.

  • Dynamically change the color of a button (e.g. based on a received CC).

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Hi Clint,

All the feature requests you made have been passed to Brad and put into the suggestion box already and I think he has plans for a future update to rework the controller bar system. In the meantime for Cantabile 4 you can do some static things by creating your own theme and editing the main.gtl file in the .cantabileTheme file which is a uncompressed zip archive that can be opened and edited and rezziped (in an uncompressed form). There are old edit instructions on the site HERE. Bear in mind Version 3 used a different GUI setup so version 4 uses the .gtl file instead of a .json file. Here is an example where I did an edit on the Dark Theme’s .gtl file to left justify the characters on the Controller bar title headers and button characters.

and for my bar meters I use for indicators on my fader racks.



You can also change font sizes if you are careful or create new font types like i did here where I increased only the Control button title Bar font size. You could do the same with the Main field. I recommend using the Theme folder approach till you get a Theme you like, it saves all the zipping. It’s described in the guide.



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I send data to an iPad and have custom MIDI Designer Pro Layouts to display the results. This is how my MCU Layout works to show fader levels inside my mixer Rack and even level meters.


Thanks so much for the detailed info … I am staying on C3 for now because of my current need for stability and for performance issues on C4 (I am running tight on CPU load).

And the stock capabilities of the Controller Bar are suiting my need very nicely! (Once I figured out basic stuff like how to get a newline).

About half implemented - I’ll post an image when done …

Well that’s a leap far forward!

I’ve been playing out solo for 18 months and my WindSynth rig has been complex, but simple to run (used pad controller to trigger songs and a few knobs for simple volume and reverb and bkg track control). Desktop looper (RC-505) is separate and controlled directly.

Now I’ve got a series of gigs with keyboard players, and I am rendering and mixing their sound. I’m still staying with a physical controller - an EC4 with 16 rotary/push buttons. Small, light, simple (on the outside), and reliable. At this point I don’t think I can run a tablet-based mixer reliably while playing a wind synth (and chatting with the audience, and remembering which song is next, and remembering to wave at my wife …).

But now you’ve got me thinking about possibilities …

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Here’s my current controller bar - basic but really does the job …

  • The “100%” shows the battery state
  • “Chg” says “Charging” (i.e. plugged in to the Mains) as opposed to “BAT” - on battery power.
  • “48k” is the sample rate

The red squares indicated a MUTED track. Note that the Wind Reverb is muted.

All the numbers are MIDI 0-127 values. I’m wondering (in this thread) how to change them to dB or something more helpful … any suggestions are welcome.

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It seems that C4 no longer looks in the declared [Resources] location for themes. If I place Clint.cantabileTheme in my [Resources] location (that is Dropbox-based), I can select the [Clint] theme, but not load it.

Might anyone be familiar with this before I “summon Brad”??

My log.txt file shows:

00000348      197   [24368:2]: Couldn't find package 'Clint' in the following locations:
00000348        0   [24368:2]:        assembly: 'C:\Program Files\Topten Software\Cantabile 4.0\Topten.GuiKit.dll'
00000348        0   [24368:2]:        assembly: 'C:\Program Files\Topten Software\Cantabile 4.0\Topten.GuiKit.dll'
00000348        0   [24368:2]:     file system: 'C:\Program Files\Topten Software\Cantabile 4.0\Clint.cantabileTheme'
00000348        0   [24368:2]:     file system: 'C:\Program Files\Topten Software\Cantabile 4.0\Clint.theme'
00000348        0   [24368:2]: Loading zip package 'Dark' from 'C:\Program Files\Topten Software\Cantabile 4.0\Dark.cantabileTheme'

(sorry about the red text … it’s from the single quotes, I guess)

I’ve taken to installing a junction (as Admin) in the Cantabile install direction. That would need to be done for each theme on each host … a pain and a hack and one more thing to get messed up …

This still seems to be an issue in v4153. I hit it today when I forgot about the need to add a Junction for each new theme.

It’s probably low on the @brad priority list, but it might be an easy fix?

Hi Clint,

Nothing here has changed for a while so it must have broken something a while back. I won’t be really back at my dev machine until next week, but I’ll try to take a look before then.


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Hi Clint,

I had a quick look at this today and yes, it’s been broken for a while but I want to refactor a few things to fix it properly.

Do you need this urgently or can you get by for the time being?


Noooo rush! Loooow priority!!

It’s only (minor) hassle is when I add a new a new Theme, which seems to happen every 6 months or so … I have to add a NTFS Junction in my file system.

This should be fixed in build 4161 (which is in the oven now).

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Tested and this bug is fixed in v4.161.

C4 now looks in the declared [Resources] location for themes.

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