Show me your Cantabile Rig!


I’ll be playing my first gig with a new rig this Friday, pics coming soon. I’m running a Korg Kross (version 1) along with a Cantabile setup on an Intel i7 NUC controlled by an Akai MPK 261. Both of those are going into a Line 6 Helix which is acting as both mixer (midi controlled levels from the Akai) and effects (which I can access with my feet or the pads on the Akai, depending on what I’m playing at the time).
I’m using an old tv that I VESA mounted on a mic stand as a monitor until I get something better, but it’s honestly pretty nice having a big screen and since it is HDMI connected to the pc I can run audio to play back tracks while I’m practicing without hooking anything additional up.
It’s reasonably elaborate and pretty much everything is USB midi’ed bidirectionally to everything else*, which I find hilarious since the last rig I posted was an ultra-minimalist rig for some fly dates. (as seen here: Show me your Cantabile Rig! and here Show me your Cantabile Rig!) Should be interesting to try it in a live environment this weekend. Part of the design philosophy was redundancy - just about anything can fail and I still get through the set - so I’m not too worried.

*the Korg isn’t typically controlling Cantabile, but it could with the flip of one button in Cantabile, ready to take over for the Akai, just in case
**The Line 6 Helix would probably be overkill except that I’m doubling on electric bass on this gig.


Gig ended up being Saturday. Cantabile rig performed beautifully.

We were a little rushed in setup at the venue, and it was the first time I played with this band, so there were a couple gremlins. 1) I definitely wished I made the keyboard stand higher and lowered the top manual, bringing them closer together. I’m still deciding which keyboard I want on top - the Akai has better controls, but I’m used to the less-weighted keybed (in this case, the Korg) being on top. and
2) I had less room than I predicted on my left side, meaning I had to set the Helix at an angle that was difficult to get to. and
3) I had less room than I predicted in front of me, meaning the monitor was a bit precarious. I decided to tape the stand to my keyboard stand, mostly thinking that would be just a precaution. Halfway through the first set I was rocking out, opened my eyes and looked up to see the monitor swaying like a tree in a stiff breeze. The stage was very bouncy.


I want to refer my experiences with my Surface Pro 4 (i7)

it is an expensive amusement with this device

the biggest Problem is how to cool down the Surface? …my solution is working and it is cooling partly…

the big Problem is that the internal heat-circuit is going to the front side (screen) and here the only way to cool is to mount an external fan.

…so a real powerfull cooling to hold high-performance is limited

Only way I see is a freezer with a glasdoor…(but then you loose the touch-functionality :wink: )

… I’am testing at the moment some Video-Software and it is working well at the same time but the the surface is allways on high CPU-Usage 80% (Cantabile,Lightjams,MR-18MixerRemotApp,ELM,BomeTranslater,Chameleon,Cams,OBS-Studio++++in use with 2 external Monitors at Home)
and I’am only working in NULL AUDIO MODE!!

If my Surface is hot for long time the screen is beginning to flicker and this only stop when I cool down the device…grrrrrr

…but I think it is not a good solution for Live

when I ever will do this I would change to a rack internal-watercooled mini-device and a normal Touchscreen on my Key


Rig Version 1.1
Replaced the bulky TV with an Amazon Fire HD 7 and Splashtop Wired X Display. Using an OnStageStand KSA7575+ and a tablet-sized music stand top. This also allows me to use the touchscreen to change patches. (The monitor to the left of me is for a computer running other parts of the show - I have a mouse on a music stand partially hidden underneath the right side of the Akai connected to it)

Changed the buttons on the Helix around - the real “trick” here is that I have one button on the Helix set to send CC 64 back to Cantabile on a momentary switch, so I can use it as an additional damper pedal.



Very nice setup. What is your approx setup time?


It’s not bad, but I’m still getting the load-in dialed in, plus I’m getting used to the rest of the band’s setup. Today it took us about an hour and a half to do full setup including the PA, drum risers and everything. I’m pretty sure that’ll get significantly cut down once I’ve done it a few more times.


The Helix has quite a powerful MIDI control centre, I was using it in a previous band to start and stop Cantabile.

An hour and a half is not a bad setup time. Takes Welsh Floyd about three hours! (including the faff time and sound check).


This is my rig!

Top tier = Laptop with Cantabile, USB hub, mouse and cables. All velcro and strapped down to a homemade tray to be able to lift off and put in the main keyboard case.

Middle tier = My Roli Rise 49 Seaboard . An amazing instrument to have for 5D sound.

Bottom tier = My Master Key 49 keyboard.

Floor = My Midi Commander for doing audio triggers and my sustain pedal for the Master Key 49 Keyboard

All controlled by the amazing Cantabile 3 Performer.

The idea behind this rig is for quick setup live on stage. All cables are colorized for quick hookup. and everything can easily come off the rack and put into a single (with layers) keyboard case. I also play guitar and vocals so I need to setup both my keys rig and guitar rig quickly.


Nice! Super jealous of the Roli. I’ve been jonesing for one for a while.

Do you find having three tiers interferes with performing? I really struggled with placing a monitor on a third tier while also having my controllers on the bottom tiers high enough to play comfortably, while also not covering up my face


One of my setups has third tier monitor, but I find the audience is very comfortable with NOT seeing my face. :smirk:


Ah, are you side on, due to your wonderful side profile? :wink:


Maybe that was it…wasn’t showing my “good” side !! :upside_down_face:


Still looking for mine…


My latest Cantabile rig isn’t something I will play much, it’s for drummers visiting my home studio.

This started when a client gave a Ludwig Accent Combo drumkit his son left behind when he landed a job at Facebook. A drummer friend recommended I convert them to “e-drums”.

Back story - 20 years ago I made some drum pads out of sheet rubber and triggers from piezo sensors bought from Radio Shack which I used with an Alesis D4. I donated that setup to our keyboard player’s son after I played Roland V-Drums but never upgraded because they’re expensive.

My drummer friend recommended Mitch at Ufodrums from whom I bought the “e-bridges”, sensors, jacks, 3 ply mesh heads and rubber rim “condoms”. Mitch is a drummer who started his company by renovating Roland V-Drum kits to pay for his e-drumming habit :grinning:

I bought the MegaDrum Midi Trigger unit from Dmitri Skachkov in the UK (he reminds me of Brad, he developed the entire system from scratch and writes the firmware and manager software for the unit. This unit is dedicated to triggering, it has no sounds so relies on you having VST plugins and a host.

I perched the MegaDrum unit on top of the bass kick drum because I need longer cables to run from the jacks on the shells to the unit. I will mount the MegaDrum unit under my Cantabile stand once I get longer cables.

I’m in the process now of tweaking the triggers in the MegaDrum manager and mapping the sounds to Superior Drummer. It’s quiet but feels like a normal drum kit.

Playback is through Alto TS115a’s.

Here is a photo of the e-bridge unit and jack before putting the heads back on.

Since electronic cymbals are very expensive I’m using acoustic cymbals.


While playing under various conditions, I always felt like missing something - a personal monitor for my guitar Cantabile setup, sounding just as it should sound. So now the setup seems to be complete (haha - in fact it’s a never ending story obviously…:wink: ) with an addition of this very nice “almost-FRFR”* monitor. After first tests with Cantabile/S-Gear - seems to be a perfect solution! I’m going to check it in July on the quite big festival (Castle Party, Bolków, Poland) stage as well, hope it will be enough as the personal monitor. Also - despite its power and sound quality, it’s quite portable.

*according to the rumours, the “guitar-amp-modeller-dedicated FRFR” Headrush wedges are just rebranded Altos.


Glad you discovered the “secret” for amp sim live use, that no one ever talks about.

I started using a 600W 15" + Horn powered monitor as an amp about 2 yrs ago. It is much lighter in weight than any of my keyboard or guitar amps, and it cuts thru the total band mix very well. I also discovered sometime ago that when playing guitar sims thru a physical guitar amp completely destroys your guitar tone. It is the equivalent of playing thru 2 separate guitar amps…all it does is distort the tone…so the powered monitor, or a powered main, puts out a much cleaner, realistic facsimile of your amp sim, and does a great job of responding to various frequencies. When using in-ears, my guitar and keys are running thru mains and in-ear mix, no amp. When using floor wedges as monitors, I do not run instruments thru the wedges, but usually opt for an elevated powered monitor behind me for my guitar or key output, as are the other musicians (using traditional amps). If wedges are used on the floor as vocal/instrument monitors( or as amps ), it is proven the sound you actually hear is reduced by a large percentage and muffled. My 15" + Horn powered monitor works great in small pubs, or at a big outdoor event. I rarely have to bump the volume past 50%, so I always have plenty of headroom before clipping. Whether using as monitor, or an amp…it is crucial to get it off the floor, a couple of feet or at head level on a pole.




Got a few pictures of my setup at the gig yesterday. Main focus for me has been to cut down on gear to transport, so the setup is by now rather basic.

I use a Studiologic SL88 Grand for both organ and piano sounds, splitting it if needed. I have the SL Mixface for handling the drawbars plus other settings on the fly. I have Cantabile and LivePrompter on the same screen, only use LivePrompter for chords, no singing (also being in charge of the saxophone and harmonicas plus handling the PA is sufficient). So far I only use Pianoteq and GSi VB3 II as sounds on the keyboard.

I few details to mention:

  • The ‘stick’ in front of the mixface is acting as half moon switch
  • The left pedal is doubling as momentary switch for leslie, or momentary for piano effects (wah-wah on/off)
  • The expression pedal is doubling as wah-wah on e-piano sounds, if needed

I use the Spacestation V3 as my only source of sound, but yesterday I was losing the battle against the guitar amps, so I need to find more power, it seems.


Hi Torsten,

I did quite a bit of research on the Space Station because the idea of throwing the sound around for Leslie emulations. I decided not to go that route after Guido was kind enough to respond to my email to him asking his opinion. He recommended a pair of FRFR powered monitors.

During my research I found some posts where owners were discussing how placement of the Space Station not only in the room but also where it’s place in relation to where the keyboard is (you) is important. They commented that in small venues it could be an issue. I think they all agreed it should be on a stand just below or above ear level.


Thanks! If I place it close to ear level I’m definitely going to use my ear protection :slight_smile:

But I need to experiment more - also, I’m not that happy with piano through the Space station, so it needs some eq or other fiddling.


I think that’s why they mentioned to elevate it but not at ear level. Even the non-XL model is pretty powerful.