Show me your Cantabile Rig!



Since I was drawn back to this post by @dsteinschneider, I did “like” your setup, but for some reason I missed the “fog” on stage. (probably my cataracts). It reminded me of 2 shows, on consecutive nights, I was scheduled to do in 1991. Big venue, big crowd, and that Friday night was amazing. Couldn’t wait to see what Saturday night would bring us. Went to the venue early, walked up to a partially burned building with a fog much like the one in your picture. The stage was gutted. We lost everything. The only thing I salvaged was my keyboard stand with melted plastic all over it. I still use that stand in a rehearsal room… The smoke smell is not as noticable now, but it serves as a reminder to have insurance, and pictures.


Good day to you, Torsten!

I am fighting an issue with my setup and thought I’d ask you a question (since we use essentially the same setup). I use a tablet to host C3 in our church orchestra (Trumpet, Flute, Oboe) and have zero trouble (average power 32bit Dell Venue 8 Pro with Windows 10).

I wanted to expand my instrument base for our Concert Band (by using SampleTank 3), but that requires using my 64bit laptop (Lenovo IdeaPad P400 with Intel i7). I use a Focusrite Scarlett (which has been working glitch-free for the last 4 years). With the exception of SampleTank 3, all of my plugins are set up identically in the tablet and laptop.

While testing the instruments with the laptop, I occasionally (seems to be regular interval when it occurs) get a short audio interruption (audio graphic looks like I chopped out a 20ms block) and it will then keep on playing until the next interrupt.

I also completed all of the suggested mods in the “GlitchFree” publication.

Without taking too much of your time, could you tell me how you have your laptop setup (like what loads during boot). I am convinced that some system event or AV app is causing this issue.

Thank you!



Looks like a great topic for a new post, @dhsherbert. :grin:


A slight addition to my Cantabile setup - nice aluminium suitcase for the cables/interfaces/stuff - finally a good place for the Cantabile stickers (and all other stickers I’ve received with my recent gear purchases + one animal-rights sticker as well) :wink:


in fact this is the UMC-22, basically the same but a bit simplier, fits my needs perfectly and I love the sound quality and the reliability for both - home and rehearsal performance. Some gigs coming soon, so I’ll be able to check it also under the “serious” conditions. One last addition to my setup I am thinking of, is the wireless audio connector, to drop the guitar cables completely :slight_smile: Some time ago I went wireless with MIDI controller for Cantabile (using Livid Guitar Wing) and I am very happy with it.


I had a gig a few days ago with this setup.

Thanks @brad for your work! It’s gorgeous! Cantabile works great…


Very clean !! Very Very Nice!



Here’s my live rig - I also have a “B” rig that I keep at home in my studio so I don’t have to haul the rack around.

Two keyboards on StandTastic stand with sustain and volume for each underneath. MOXF8 is the bottom board and the Novation 61 key I use for synths and organ (almost a waterfall keyboard on that.
Laptop running Cantabile with external HD

In the rack, top to bottom:

  • Behringer XTouch (for FOH to our XR18 mixer
  • Berhinger in ear monitor mixer/headphone amp
  • Power supply
  • MOTU MIDI and Audio interfaces
  • Drawbar controller, USB hub, and second MIDI interface so I can record MIDI as well as audio on a sliding rack shelf.


Pat…very nice rig. Super clean. Love the choice of the P16-M. Just got two for the duo I play in and love them.


Phantom…you have taken minimalist to the extreme. I wouldn’t mind being your roadie, lol. Love the setup


Up until about 10 months ago, I was a hardware guy all the way. For no good reason, I resisted jumping aboard the midi train until I became disenchanted with my setup and knew it was time for a change. I thought long and hard about a replacement keyboard, and decided to fold and join the 21st century.

I spent about a week just doing my homework to see what the options were. I called my sales guy at my go to music store and went through some options. I told him I was leaning towards losing the hardware and going midi. He turned me on to Cantabile, so I researched in depth and saw what Cantabile had to offer and decided to take the plunge. I sold off two keyboards and some extraneous equipment and purchased a StudioLogic SL88 controller, Komplete 11, SampleTank 3 and an Audiobox interface. I continued to work gigs with the SL88 controlling my remaining keyboard (MX49 synth) while trying to figure out Cantabile and midi in general. It was a huge undertaking, but I was determined to make it work. With a great deal of help and some expert tutelage, I finally gained a pretty decent understanding of midi which further helped my understanding of Cantabile. I ran into a few problems along the way and ended up upgrading my interface to a Presonus 2/6 from a 2 channel Audiobox. As I progressed using Cantabile, I began to see how this could be the ticket to really enhancing my sound and making my setup easier.

My need (more like obsession) for redundancy in all things live, from my own rig to the PA, shaped the way I currently run things. Holding on to my MX49 was paramount. It is small, super lightweight, and coupled with the SL88 controller, made for a perfect emergency keyboard should Cantabile or my laptop ever fail. Since we use backing tracks that we create (we are a duo), I have an external professional USB/mp3 player loaded with a thumb drive of that night’s set plugged and ready and muted in the mixer. In the event of a crash, I can simply un-mute the mp3’s mixer channels and continue right on until a set break to figure out the nature of the issue and replace whatever is necessary.

Recently, I picked up several addition to my rig, in the form of an M-Audio Code 49 controller. It has integrated quite nicely thanks to Cantabile’s recognition of Mackie/MMC. I really like this controller, especially the feel of the keyboard. It has great functionality as well, but I recently began using a QSCtouch app on my iPad custom designed by Dave Dore to control my tracks, song states, set list selection, controls for each one of my racks and plugins. It is truly an outstanding piece of work by Dave.

Not satisfied with the MX49 as just my sound source in an emergency, I wanted to add some additional backup security, as well as enhance my live rig in general. I recently experienced a glitch with my interface in the form of a rhythmic humming and was able to record it. I solicited an opinion of one of the more experienced members of the Cantabile Community. Without being able to reproduce it (who would want to), his best guess was a possible power fluctuation on the USB buss, causing the module to start humming in the D/A output amps. Whether it was or wasn’t, it was my first experience with a glitch that I couldn’t simply stop immediately with the way my rig was set up. That experience only served to enhance my obsessive need for redundancy.

I had previously had a Roland keyboard that had some of the Supernatural sounds on it, that I really loved. It heavily influenced my decision in upgrading my rig. As I already was running a 3 tier setup, adding another keyboard was out of the question, so I added the next best thing, a Roland Integra 7 sound module. My StudioLogic SL88 has four separate zones that can run simultaneously. It has a MIDI Merge function that allows it to mix the MIDI IN messages to the MIDI OUT, keeping them as they are received or filtering the incoming messages with a Zone parameter (range, channel etc). So, I created a preset on my Code49 that activates the DIN outputs, and on my SL88 I set one zone to USB Midi and another zone to 5 pin DIN. I ran MIDI cables to connect everything. The Integra allows an additional keyboard to be connected to the module, so I connected my MX49 synth to the 1/4” inputs freeing up two channels on my mixer. The sounds in the Integra 7, are a very nice addition to the patches I already have. I mean after all, one can never really have too many instruments to work with.

The upgrade has continued. I recently added a simple M-Audio Keystation 49 to my rig. It is reserved for organ/strings/horns/synth and such, being a synth keybed. I already had the Behringer X Air 16 digital mixer, and after chatting with one of our communities more experienced users, decided to dump my Presonus Studio 2/6 and upgrade my mixer to the Behringer X18. I now use the X18 as my sound card for C3. I always carry my spare mixer just in case. With direct access to the back of my rack, I simply unplug the audio inputs and plug them into my mixer. In the event that my system crashes, I simply turn up my MX49 synth and am able to carry on and get through the song or set, depending on how bad the issue is. With the direct connection to the Integra 7 as well, I can fall back to using my SL88 and my Code 49 controlling the Integera. I also redid my whole physical setup. Not satisfied with my Z stand, I custom made two stands that are super sturdy and convenient. Each stand has removable shelves and each simply folds up at the end of the gig. I have a wiring harness run through a hole in the bottom out the top. Every cable is clearly labeled for quick easy connection. At the end of a gig, I pack my keys into a rolling case, take the crosspieces off the base of the stand (they are attached via machine screws), quickly remove the shelves and all but the one under my 88 controller go right in the super sturdy bag I got with my Z stand. All the shelves and cross pieces are labeled with a letter so I can easily reattach at a gig. I have a small power screwdriver that does the job in under 10 min. The sustain pedals are attached to the side of the stands in between gigs using heavy duty Velcro. Each column has a carry handle and weigh no more than 10-12 lbs each. I remove the 10 slot powered hub and place it in my rack case. The loose USB and sustain, etc. cables are zip tied to the stand to prevent them from catching on anything. At the next gig, I just clip the zip tie, attach the Hub to the stand (double faced Velcro), plug it and everything in and make the connections to the laptop. I combined the best attributes of the Apex Pro and the K & M Spider, but made them way more steady. My SL88 and Code 49 are together on one stand and I can hammer away with no shaking or rocking. Each stand has 4 adjustable contact points so I can account for uneven ground. My setup is a V formation facing the audience with the Keystation 49 across the top shelves. I use two mics, so no matter which way I’m facing I have a mic at the ready. Since we play direct to the PA with in ear, there is no stage volume so no feedback from the dual mic setup. We recently upgraded our monitor setup with the P16-M personal monitoring system. It connects to the X18 digital mixer through the mixers Ultranet port. Each person gets their own individual mix, exactly as they like it. Since I run sound from stage, it saves me from having to constantly adjust monitors. I have enough to do as it is. Anyone who has the X Air series of mixers…I would strongly suggest getting these. They sound fantastic and could not be easier to operate.

I feel very good about both the security and capability of my rig. I recently purchased an i7 Quad-Core laptop with 500GB SSD and an additional 500GB SSD in the optic bay. The laptop I was using has now become my backup. I have backup systems to get me through a gig. In the meantime, I have Cantabile running our tracks, playing awesome VSTi’s, controlling two iPads via wireless midi running on an external router and running my wireless digital mixer. 10 months ago, I had very limited midi knowledge and was using hardware only. Now thanks to Cantabile, I have a whole new lease on music.

The laptop and interfaces are just part of a quick recording setup and don’t come along to the gig. I do have a small headphone monitor attached to the underside of the shelf in case our monitor system goes down, as well as an external effects unit.

Here they are right after the build and first coat of paint


Fantastic! very cool. What genre do you play? I trying to imagine what a duo with 2 keys would sound like. Hopefully not like having 2 'Bone players? lol

great set up!


Synth…we play Classic Rock, but not the usual suspects. We play enough to keep the masses happy, but our song list is a mix of Classic/Blues and gritty rock. We use tracks that we create and our former drummer chips in to keep his “skins” in the game. But, we are guitar and keys. The guitarist records all bass and guitar parts and I do all the keys, and we play the rest live…as much as two hands will allow. The rig is a work in progress and will hopefully transition to a few less as time rolls on


I meant to get a better picture at rehearsal today, but we did snag this one. See that circle?

That’s a cantabile rig that’s going with us to Japan in a week. We don’t have room in our luggage for a keyboard controller of any kind, so we’re using whatever is at the churches and venues when we get there. But to keep our sounds consistent and for a couple tunes with complex patches, we’re bringing Cantabile on a Surface Pro 2 and a Scarlet 2i4. Literally the entire rest of the rig is one instrument cable, one midi cable, and a Saturnworks TS/TS momentary pedal for sustain/ effects triggering. Grab and go. I’ll post some better pictures from Japan!


That’s how you do it! Well done, young padawan. :smiley:


Since switching to Cantabile I been demo-ing a 1U rack space 8 core Win10 Pc with great results!! This was my “main” gig rig that had my pc in the first top space , Presonus RM16, Shure Wireless Mic and Sennhizer in-ear receiver mounted in the rear. With having 16 threads from the pc, I’ve been able to reliably run 14 Vst’s at once in Cantabile ,with multiple controllers with no cpu spikes or crashing! This rig I was also running stem tracks through Ableton and handling stage/band /talk back mix with 8 separate user controlled monitor mixes. Working on a smaller set-up with with the MOTU Ultralite interface which will actually give me a few more options than this set-up, but using a 1U soft rack bag…


This the heart of my rig… 8 cores; 64 G ram max; 1 M2 Nvme ssd; 2 Sata 3 ssd’s; Win10 PC and Cantabile!! My MBP stay home and are used for surfing the web!!!


@Ed88fingers: how much did that rig run you? I’m starting to feel the limitations of my Surface Pro 4 and am considering a rackmount PC. I’ve built plenty of desktops, but have no experience with rack mounted enclosures.


Initially around $1400-1500.00 but with price drop probably $1k to $1100.00…And that’s with 32Gs of ram…


Also I’m using 2 256g M2 ssd drives and by separating the OS and programs from samples and data I’ve utilize my disc space more efficiently! I have All Spectrasonics (Omnisphere, Trillian , RMX, Keyscape) Komplete 9, Ravenscroft 275, Adio Strings, and a host of other DAWs including Reason 10, Ableton 9, Cuba’s 8.5, and Pro Tools with about 30G free on both drives…