Using the ARC2 Speaker/Room Optimization VST with Windows Audio via Cantabile Lite and Voicemeeter Pro Inserts (Video)

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How to use the ARC2 Speaker Correction VST to playback System Audio Via Voicemeeter Inserts Using Cantabile Lite as Host (Of course, this works with any version of Cantabile 3!)

Full Checklist Below!

http://www.ikmultimedia.com/products/arc2/
http://www.vb-audio.com/Voicemeeter/banana.htm
https://www.cantabilesoftware.com/
https://www.cantabilesoftware.com/download/

ARC 2 Speaker/Room Correction Software optimizes your listening environment. IK Multimedia recommends listening to everything you can using the correction so you get used to the sound of corrected speakers with properly mixed music and video sources, so you become accustomed to how those mixes sound in that optimized environment.

We use Voicemeeter as the default playback device in Windows, and its inserts to send out to and back from Cantabile Lite as a host to the ARC2 VST plugin.

Voicemeeter sends out the insert pre-fader to the host application which runs the audio through its effects and sends it back to Voicemeeter also pre-fader. The fader then adjusts the results.

Both Cantabile Lite and Voicemeeter allow you to save and load setups, and they both start up with the last used settings intact, so they are easy to use together to optimize your environment for all your listening experiences.

  1. Download and install Voicemeeter Pro

  2. Download Cantabile – 64-bit or 32-bit depending upon your machine and/or plugins available.

  3. Install ARC2 into your VSTPlugins folder, usually in C:\Program Files\VSTPlugins

  4. Run Cantabile - select “Lite” version

  5. Run Voicemeeter Pro

(Always in that order - Cantabile first)

  1. Select A1 output in Voicemeeter - to your ASIO Hardware is always best (at bottom)

  2. In Windows’ Audio Control Panel, set Voicemeeter as the “Default Playback Device”

  3. Select A1 button in VAIO slider for monitoring, sending the ARC2 conditioned output to the speakers. If also recording and need a WDM signal (such as into OBS) Use B2. (B1 might appear as being “busy” already to your recorder using this setup.)

  4. Enter Cantabile and go to Tools/Options

  5. First set the Audio Engine to “Voicemeeter Insert Virtual ASIO”

  6. Now set the Audio Ports, adding Stereo Ins and Stereo Outs as needed, by first adding the input port and naming it (I call that one “Windows Audio VAIO Insert In”). The left and right channels will initially be unassigned. Hit the ADD button to assign the left and right channels to the appropriate insert number (VAIO slider uses Insert #4, so INS#4 Left and INS#4 Right). Then add the output port and name that (I called it “Windows Audio VAIO Return”) and follow the same procedure to assign the left and right channels.

  7. In Cantabile’s Plugin Options area, select your plugin folder. Then click OK, and from Tools, perform a plugin scan so it can see your ARC2 and other plugins there.

  8. Now on the main screen, Click “Add Object” and add the ARC2 plugin.

  9. Beneath the ARC2 plugin, click “Add Route”, select a Stereo Output, and then your “Windows Audio VAIO Return” output we’d created.

  10. Now in the Input Ports section, click “Add Route” and select your “Windows Audio VAIO Insert In” input. Select as its Preset/Destination the ARC2 plugin. All the connections are complete now on the Cantabile end.

  11. Back in Voicemeeter, go to “Menu–System Settings/Options” and turn on the inserts for the VAIO slider: Inserts #4 left and right.

  12. Test that the loop is working - you can turn off the plugin’s output route to test this, or just play with the plugin.

1 Like

Terry, do you need to use the Windows Audio? Will it work if you are using an ASIO device instead?

And, is it realyl necessary to run Voicemeter as well? Can’t ARC be used by itself?

thanks

Dennis

The idea is that if you want to playback iTunes, Windows Media Player, VLC, browsers, etc. you have to go through Windows audio. Windows audio does not respect ASIO devices unless they have a special driver for that purpose (which, in the case of MOTU Audio Wave 64-bit, really really sucks).

So, this allows you to put your Windows audio stuff through the ARC2 VST.

ARC2 cannot be used by itself - it is not standalone. It runs as a VST. (The ARC2 analysis program is standalone, but not the speaker/room correction portion.) So, it needs a host like Cantabile. Voicemeeter gets the audio from the Windows Audio system and sends it to Cantabile for processing, then back out to the speakers, now nicely optimized for.

Terry

ahh okay, I was thinking of mebbe using it to “tune” live gig rooms I play in. If its just for studio use then I wont purseu it any further, thanks m8

Dennis

PS: btw , yep I figured it wasn’t a stand-alone haha!

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Yeah, I get the impression it is made to be used for a maximum 12X12 foot region, and primarily for the 3X3 region of your desk chair.

That’s what I use it for, and have two measurements - one for “laid back” listening further from the desk with my feet up, and one for sitting right up on it.

Terry

Hi Terry,

Thanks for this great tutorial. Just set this up finally with ARC 3. Now I have to sit up straight when I’m listening! :grinning:

I have a couple extensions of the explanations:
Step 1. I used Voicemeeter Banana instead of Pro.
Step 6. Select A1 output in Voicemeeter (in upper left HARDWARE OUT section)
Step 7. In Windows Audio Control Panel Set “Voicemeeter Input” as the “Default Playback Device”

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Yes, I meant “Voicemeeter Banana” back when I wrote that, but I think Vincent Burel called it “Voicemeeter Pro” back then. I cannot edit that post anymore to update it.

It is definitely key setting Voicemeeter Input as the “default playback device” and selecting the ASIO audio interface hardware as the A1 output device.

Terry

LOL, one of the reasons I love my ancient E-MU interfaces. Windows audio is just another strip on its mixer no different than ASIO. You can even route Windows audio to ASIO in the mixer!

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One unexpected capability of my recently purchased Axe I/O is that Windows sound comes through even when I’ve got Cantabile or Reaper running. Now that I’m getting up to speed with Voicemeeter I’m wondering if installing it on my keyboard setup that has a UMC202HD that cuts off other media players when Cantabile is running might solve that issue. Right now I’ve got a second laptop to get around that issue. I use Songsurgeon with a little stenographers USB pedal (hey, its what they support) to loop parts so I can learn them.

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Putting a media player through to Voicemeeter’s VAIO or AUX inputs is a perfect use for those - they are two “virtual cables” built right in.

Don’t forget that little cassette recorder can also load any file for playback, like for intermission music or something! :slight_smile:

Terry

VB makes some cool stuff and speaking of virtual cables, I found their ASIO bridge is a great solution for getting out of DaVinci Resolve and into ASIO. Resolve doesn’t support ASIO (only supports Windows and their proprietary successor to ASIO). Able to get reasonably low latency this way which is helpful when doing video edits.

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@sekim YES! ASIO Bridge is pretty fantastic and is far more lightweight than is Voicemeeter, if the capabilities of Voicemeeter are not required by the need. That is a perfect application of it, routing from a video editor to an ASIO playback device. When you DO require two-way communication/routing, then Voicemeeter and its ability to “lock in” with the ASIO hardware and expose a “virtual ASIO” routing (and even ASIO inserts) is indispensable.

I get the feeling that I should devote an entire webinar to Voicemeeter and the other VB-Audio products even if it is only “related” to Cantabile. There are so many ways the two can integrate.

Terry

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Great idea! That is what makes communities like these valuable imo…sharing knowledge and experiences others might find beneficial.

Monday’s Webinar 7 is focusing on just that. Thanks for the inspiration! :slight_smile: