Select Nord Stage 2 presets in Cantabile

Hi, I’m very new to Cantabile and liking it better by the minute. I now know how to create a setlist with different songs, with different song states.

If it’s possible, for each song (and/or state), I would like to select a specific preset on my Nord Stage 2 (HA88). That way, I could simply use my midi (controller) keyboard to go to the next song in the playlist and all sounds on both my midi keyboard and my Nord would be automatically selected in one go. Is that possible at all? And if so, can anyone explain how to go about this?


Hi Herman,

You can use bindings to send program changes on load of Song. Below is an example …

I wasn’t sure how you change Songs in your set list so I may have advised wrong.
The first example is for a straight program change and the second is for a banked program change. Hope this helps!

Thanks, Dave, I will give it a try.

Well, it took a bit of fiddling around but I am now able to load any desired program (preset) from my Nord Stage 2 using a binding in the song. I am sharing this in case anyone else is wanting to do the same thing: The binding looks like this:

  • Source: Song
  • Event: On load
  • Target: External synth
  • Action: Programm Change (Banked)
  • Value: X.Y

X is the bank number (0=bankA. 1=bankB, 2=bankC, 3=bankD) and
Y is the preset within the bank

For example, to select the standard preset “Tom Sawyer”, which is Bank A, page 02, program:04 on the NS2, you type “0.9” as your value (each page contains 5 programs, “Tom Saywer” adds up as 5+4=9).
Actually, if you select a program in bank A, there is no need to start with “0.” because Cantabile will automatically assume this is the first bank. so in the axampe of “Tom Saywer”, you can simply ype “9” (in fact, if you DO type “0.9”, Cantabile will simply replace this with “9”). However, you do have too specifiy the other banks.

In the screenshot, I selected one of my own customised programs in Bank D (page 3, program 1). Works perfectly.

Hope this will be of use to others in the forum.


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Following up on my previous “user instructions”, to add a similar program change to a song state, you just follow the same procedure , but you select “Song State” instead of “Song” for your binding source. However, before doing so, you should go to the bottom left of the screen and make sure you select the “Target” checkbox under “State behavior - Binding”. After that, you add the song state binding for “On load” program change for program “x” and then add a song state binding for program “y” in the next song state.

Are you shure the “Target” checkbox in State Behavior Binding is set? Otherwise changes are ignored and always the last value is true for all states.

Regards, humphrey

You are right, @humphrey, I forgot about that. As it happens, I just figured it out myself and already edited my previous message in this thread, but thanks so much for helping me :slight_smile:

Glad you got things sorted :sunglasses:

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Hey Herman

if there aren’t too many standard presets you use, you can go one step further:

  • Create a new linked rack and call it “NordStage2”
  • Within that rack, create a route from Rack Midi In to your Nord Stage MIDI port
  • Create a binding within the rack SongState;OnLoad–>Nord Stage MIDI Out; Program Change (Banked)
  • Enable State Behavior “Target” for this binding
  • Now create one rack state for each of your presets and name it like the preset on your Nord (e.g. create a rack state “Tom Sawyer”)
  • Change the value of your program change to the correct preset for every state
  • Save your rack

Now you can treat your external synth like any other VST plugin rack: send MIDI to the rack to play your Nord, and select a rack state to choose a preset on your Nord.

Makes your songs easier to manage and easier to understand - without the need for song level bindings to select sounds.

Give it a try!



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I will certanly give it a try. Thanks, Torsten!

Hi Torsten,

I have now created a rack NordStage2 like you suggested but I cannot create a route from Rack MIDI In to my Nord STage MIDI port as you suggest. I have created the MIDI port in C3 as you can see in the screenshot below, but the route options within the rack don’t show any of my keyboards’ MIDI ports. What am I doing wrong?


Hi Herman,

Those “environment” MIDI ports (ports to real hardware) are hidden by default when setting up routes in racks. You just need to show them, which you can do in Options -> Miscellaneous, “Show Environment Audio and MIDI Ports in Racks”.



Hi Neil,

OK thanks, I will take a look as soon as I get home.

Edit: I tried it and that was the solution. Thanks again, @Neil_Durant.


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