Feature Suggestion: Change value (f.e. volume) by a fixed amount

Hey guys,

I wrote this to Brad yesterday and he asked me to put this on the forum to see if there might be some other use cases for this:

In my application I miss a button that increase or decreases the volume of an object (rack, plugin, etc.) by a fixed amount independent from where this value was before. Pressing the button again set’s the value back to where it was before.

Example: You are playing a song in a band and you have to do a solo. You have not prepared a song-state for this case. So you might have to raise the volume of that solo sound. Wouldn’t it be handy to press a button, that raises the volume of that sound f.e. +3db and set it back to where it was before when pressing it again?

Working with a button that sends an absolute value is not sufficient in this case.

I’d like to hear your feedback and if someone else has other ideas how to use that.


Hi Chris!

My workaround:
I do this with my output rack which is placed on the bottom of all my songs. All output goes through that rack. The fader is always set to zero, so i can simply assign bindings with absolute values to it. That would raise or lower the volume for all sounds, but you could add a parallel output in this rack called “Solo” and route all solo sounds through it.

Greetings, Tom

I know that there are several workarounds. But we don’t want a workaround, do we? :wink:

:smiley: ok, so to answer your initial request: Yes, I would find this feature useful but right now I couldn’t think about other use cases :wink:

Hmm, haven’t really seen the need yet.

Usually, for a pre-meditated solo boost, I insert an EQ that both raises the volume and at the same time sharpens the sound to cut through better. On solo, I simply remove the bypass from this plug.

For more ad-hoc solo-boosts, I use my “solo volume” slider on my keyboard. All the solo sounds in my songs get routed to a “solo volume” rack, which is controlled by a fader via a binding. This solo volume rack is initialized to 0 dB for every song. The fader normally sits in the middle at a CC value of 64; when I see the need to push my solo a bit, I simply push this fader up a bit (to taste) and back down to the middle after the solo. Easy enough. Same if I need to do an ad-hoc piano solo: I just push my “main keys volume” up a notch - and need to be sure to pull it back down after the solo, which I frequently forget; I SOOO like the sound of my piano :wink:

Since everything arrives at these summary faders pre-mixed (rack gain), this is effectively a relative volume increase/decrease.

So for my requirements, I’ve got all I need; not sure if I would actually use a solution like you describe. But of course having it in the ever-increasing arsenal of Cantabile’s little helpers would never hurt… And who knows what creative uses someone like @dave_dore or @terrybritton will come up with :wink:



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Another use case which I described here:

Having a button that decreases song volume by -20db would be nice.

It’s not that it couldn’t be done in any other ways (like master-fader, which I use now). But it could be a handy tool.

In Cubase you used to be able to add a + or - before a number in the input box and it would take this to mean add or subtract the typed value from current value, as opposed to replace the current value with the typed one.

I don’t think it does that any more, but it was useful while it was there.

It would be a good feature, I’d say.

This may be an unpopular viewpoint, but I actually disagree here. If Brad starts duplicating existing features as individual features the interface can get really crowded, really fast. I’ve seen feature creep ruin a GUI before… not a pretty sight. You end up not being able to find anything in the morass of menu items.

If you need to diminish all volume by 3dB with a button press, I would set up an embedded Volume rack in the background rack with Full and Quiet states to switch between 0dB and -3dB on the main output. This will always be relative to your hardware volume level anyway. Then bind a hardware button to switch between Volume states.

For solo routing, Torsten’s solution looks like Brad’s design intent behind the rack system. Rack states seem ideally suited for this type of automation as they allow much more flexibility WRT affecting momentary changes to tone and level.

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again, not something that needs a special binding to achieve: a simple gain plugin in the master rack that gets activated via a MIDI button will do the trick.

BTW: a nice idea with the -20dB test - I’ll definitely build that feature into my master rack.



I’m tending towards agreeing with you - Cantabile already offers a variety of ways to do this, and they don’t feel like “workarounds”. The feature feels like a particular example use case of something Cantabile is designed to be able to do already. And yes, adding more specialised functionality can make software more complicated for users, as well as adding to the codebase Brad has to support.


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The true measure of a man’s intelligence is the degree to which he agrees with you. +1 :slight_smile:


That’s what the forum is made for! I like the discussions and that the users say what they are thinking! :slight_smile:

Also thanks for the workarounds! Having a gain-plugin in the main-rack, makes sense to be more flexible!

Thanks for your feedback, guys! So @brad: You can kick it from Trello :wink:


I’m also leaning towards the Twisty Doctrine. :smiley: One long-range solution might be to have a way of switching Cantabile from a “Basic” to “Power User” or “Advanced” mode, because it already can be a bit overwhelming with features. To someone who doesn’t program there a definite holy crap factor to the amount of options available. And even for the experienced users you could go easily from a day to day use interface to “under the hood” when it’s necessary.

I’m dying here! :joy: I have now arrived!

Different “modes” of Performer? :rofl: I can foresee thinking, "Ok…I need “this” feature, but that is in power mode, and I only want to be in basic mode because I am overwhelmed by it’s features. I got it…Hey Brad, put this feature I need in basic mode! But wait, “advanced mode” has a feature similar to this one, only easier to use. Hey Brad, forget what I asked for, and put the advanced feature in “basic mode” . And, by the way, can “bindings” be changed to “attachments”, as I can relate much better to that word?

Deja Vu? I personally like the workarounds, which are proof just how powerful, and versatile C3 is. You can make it what you want it to be. Workflow becomes your own personality.

Yes. Think of it like skins. You can open in bells and whistles mode if that’s your style but I promise you this software probably panics some users that would really like it, and work their way into it, and it could also help the interface bloat Twisty is alluding to (which does happen once you get past a certain point, the Cantabile isn’t there yet imo). I’m looking at having the best of both worlds… :wink: It probably doesn’t need such a thing at this point really, but it might be an issue down the road.

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I agree FWIW. The challenge is understanding how to do these things in what is an inherently flexible tool. :slight_smile:

Maybe one thought for the future is some “wizards” for certain features that drop in preconfigured racks and the like. Or at least the kind souls who are way more advanced than I am at this point to keep sharing these great ways of using Cantabile! :slight_smile:


Like this ?

mr wizard

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Isn’t that what the different Cantabile versions are meant for? Wizards might indeed be a good idea at some point in the future. But then we’re really talking about how to market Cantabile to a more “general” audience (let’s say the less technology-aware part of the keyboard players community).

For most of us who are active on this forum, I think this forum will always remain the best place to find answers to our questions. Cantabile is like a Swiss army knife. Often, there are different ways to achieve the same result, depending on how far you are willing to go and how efficient you wish to be. It’s like a learning curve that keeps on going round and round. Just when you think you are really digging something, you stumble upon someone else’s post about how they can achieve the same (or a better) result in a ten times more efficient way…