Using Cantabile and Backing tracks from DAW


1. How can I run videos flawless with every song
In QLC+, you can display video to a 2nd screen. It can be triggered via MIDI output from C3.

_2. Editing the midi from the media player, is this possible or maybe open the daw to edit when double clicking the part? _
We’ve got roughly 30 PC and CC changes per song, and I’ve been doing them with C3 Transport triggers. As you would expect, they execute flawlessly. They’re simple to edit during rehearsal, and they’re easy to set up offline if you’ve got a backing track as a reference.


Thx Robb !
Looks interesting ! I use DMXis for lights, but if this works for video that would be awesome. Other suggested external VLC, but I think that would be very difficult to manage.
I assume it’s a vst?

How do you guys work it out to have that live parts view? that follows the play location?


It’s not a VST, it’s a separate program, but it’s very lightweight. is the correct URL.

QLC+ can be configured to accept MIDI from Cantabile (using LoopMIDI), and configured to play videos based on MIDI PC or CC (you would configure the virtual console with buttons that start the videos, then bind the buttons to MIDI events).



In Welsh Floyd I kept video and backing tracks (and DMXIS plugin in Cantabile) on separate laptops as I did not want video affecting the backing tracks and VST performance.

I used Show Cue Systems 11 (a little clunky and fussy about video drivers), but works well for the video as you could trigger cues (videos) via MIDI. I used RTPMIDI to connect machines via a network connection. A Cantabile binding was used to trigger the relevant video when the transport started for each song,

It worked well. With a high spec machine I guess you could merge audio/light/video functions, but I preferred to keep them separate, and would probably do so again as I start to make more use of demanding plugins as well.


I use video all the time in Reaper and it works, as long as the VST are not to demanding. My other band the only and main vst is synth1, so thats no problem and my Depeche More it’s with Avenger synth, quite demanding, but it works out.
I’ll need to see how to run VLC via C3.


If you get Cantabile and VLC working together that would be cool.


well, problem is that I don’t know how to start it playing, in sync with the timeline


That’s why I went with SCS 11, as it was the only affordable package I found with the ability to kick the video transport off via MIDI


I’m a new user trialing Cantabile for what I hope to be a duo with backing tracks project. 15 years ago I did this with CUBASE on a macbook pro where I would output 4 submixes to a Mackie 1604.

Exactly what I hope to do, and I have the X-Air 18 :slight_smile:

So I’ve read the manual through twice, watched all of the videos, read Derek’s guides, and surfed the forum, but this is still a bit fuzzy to me. If I understand correctly, in earlier releases of Cantabile, one had to use a master MIDI file in a media player to “play” PC (presumably) routed to different targets via MIDI out, yes? But now this can be replicated via transport triggers? Could someone possibly post a couple of basic examples of each of these methods?

I am looking to control Amplitube presets such that I do not have to manually change patches between electric guitar rhythm, fill parts, leads, etc. Similarly, on some songs I will be using a keyboard controller and software keys that will vary patches, layers, volumes, etc. I would love to be able to pre-program all of these changes and avoid using midi controllers to do so manually.

@Robb_Fesig, Regarding the VoiceLive, are you using a media player with some sort of midi chord track as its input for guiding harmony generation? If so, can that same track send it PCs to automatically engage harmony at appropriate points in the song? Or do you do that separately with transport triggers?

I appreciate any help that you can offer!



I’m using bindings to send MIDI data to the Voicelive 3, you can use a combination of presets (which are changed via Program Changes) and enabling/disabling effects using Control Changes. Some bindings are sent via Song/On load, others are Transport/On Position.

I’ve attached a song, take a look at the bindings and you’ll see what I’m talking about.Comfortably Numb.cantabileSong (226.0 KB)

I think Transport/On Position bindings require Cantabile Performer btw.


Thanks so much! I’ll have a look at this tonight after work. Regarding your VoiceLive, are you using fixed-key harmony presets, or feeding it via an instrument or track of some sort?

I’ve been learning the basics on the Lite version, but will activate the trial of performer to start delving into bindings and such.




I’m using “song/on load” or “transport/on position” bindings with CC messages to set the key and scale on the VoiceLive 3.

I used to have an Aux out from the XAir into the monitor port on the VL3, but it was no longer necessary when I switched to an automated setup using Cantabile. Playing around to get the correct key and scale for harmonies can be tricky, but it’s worth it instead of letting the Voicelive guess (usually incorrectly).


Appreciate the information. I’ve only use the VoiceLive with my acoustic guitar signal as the guide, and that has actually worked very well. Good to know the alternate methods are not as reliable - though it looks like I’ll have a fair bit of work ahead of me setting up presets :open_mouth:.

Thanks for all of your help!



I also use a VoiceLive in some bands. I can send it patch changes via Cantabile, send it chords for haromonsing against the backing track, turn effects on and off when needed, or step through the steps you can have in a song.

All doable. I am away from home at present, but if you need further advice on any of that, I can dig it out some time.


Got a chance to look at Robb’s example song, and it is very helpful. I couldn’t see the target or action for the VoiceLive3 (Since I don’t have one I got “missing target” and “invalid binding” error messages), but I could see how transport OnPosition was used as a trigger, and I’ve looked up the proper PC/CC codes in the VL2 manual for my unit. Going to try doing this today.

@Robb_Fesig, I noted that you used multiple Media players and individual sound file stems (as opposed to a multi-track .wav file). I like that idea, as you can use .mp3 files which take up less space and presumably load faster. Any reason for using Gate / Limiter FX in Cantabile vs. the stock X-Air ones available on each input channel?

For those preparing backing tracks in a DAW, what have you found to be the best method for balancing these tracks? On the surface it would seem problematic: when I mix songs in stereo prior to mastering (for a demo, e.g.), volumes of different instruments are balanced, but the final output is often -6 to -12 db to leave room for mastering. I bring it up via T-Racks 5 Mastering software, typically with a final limiter set at -0.1 db. No prob if I bring the entire mix in to Cantabile and then the X-Air as a stereo file. I’m just not sure how to get my volumes correct if I export my subgroups as mono tracks for playback in multiple media players - it’s like I would have to remix them and manually set the levels for each song either in Cantabile or the X-Air mixer. Am I missing something simple here?




Hi Scott. I’ll try to answer your questions about how and why I do what I do :slight_smile:

The missing target and invalid bindings are merely MIDI CC or PC messages being sent out via the XR18. I have the MIDI information for the Voicelive 3 in a text file, I assume the Voicelive 2 is the same, so I can provide that for you if you can’t find it.

I use multiple media players for each song, 1 for click, 1 for keys, 1 for guitars, 1 for vocals. That way each instrument can be mixed on the XR18 depending on what room and equipment conditions require. Each file has a gate and a limiter because that way the limiter settings can be applied per song, instead of having to change the compressor/volume settings on the channel each time.

I prepare the stems the same way you suggested, normalized to -0.1


@Robb_Fesig Thank you for all of your help! I am happy to say that I am up and running! It was extremely gratifying to pull up my (one song ) set list on my ipad, hit play, and sing/play along with my backing trax, watch lyrics pop up, and have harmony kicking in automatically :smile:!

Now it’s time to rinse & repeat, and add bindings to control amplitube and VST sampler for songs where I play electric guitar or keys respectively.

Thanks again!