Web UI updates? Other Remote Options?

Greetings! Ok, short version - I’m looking for ways to look at Cantabile live without having a laptop - or at least without Cantabile being powered by that laptop.

I poked around the Support articles and the forum and I couldn’t find any updates about the Web UI for a couple years, so please feel free to point me towards that if I missed anything.

So here’s my use case: I use Cantabile live on desktop computers. (Currently Intel NUCs - I have a pair with identical setups for backup - the tentative plan is to move to a rackmount PC). I’m in a dance/function band, so that’s setup/teardown every night. And I really don’t want the horses of Cantabile running on a laptop. So to view cantabile I have some small monitors (the kind you often see in CCTV security setups) that I industrial-strength-velcro to the top of my keyboard (it’s surprisingly stable).

I’ve been pondering lots of ways to streamline the rig - both for robustness and easy of setup/teardown. So that takes me to remotely viewing Cantabile in some way other than an HDMI cable - perhaps network (possibly wireless/wifi), perhaps some other means. One options I’ve considered is having an old laptop function as essentially a monitor for a beefier PC in the rack - this idea occurred because of all the racks (like the SKB studioflyer series) with laptop mounts on top. But I’d like a quickly responding interface with access to all that I normally see in Cantabile - as opposed to a streamlined view like what I’ve used of the WebUI.

I used to use a kind of KVM software to use my android phone as a monitor (at the time I didn’t interact with Cantabile through a mouse or whatnot live, I just needed a monitor) through a USB cable - and so I’ve considered Synergy or Barrier (an open source fork of Synergy). Does anyone have experience using Cantabile with software like this? It seems like it would be a nice way to tuck some powerful computer away from stray beers and ill-advised stage antics - possibly a better solution than “run a long HDMI and do your best to keep it away from both your feet and the audience’s.” I’m hoping if something like this could be done with a wireless connection, it would be one less thing to run on stage every night.

So yeah. Any thoughts? Anyone doing something similar? Have I absolutely missed updates to the WebUI? Greatly appreciate any insight.

Hi there,

you might want to check this thread - your challenge is pretty similar to my original use case: keep a PC in a rack backstage and have a “light” solution with your keyboard rig.

I’ve been there with the small monitor velcro’ed to the keyboard, but these days I prefer a 10 inch touchscreen mounted on a separate microphone stand - reduces the vibrations from my hitting the keys :wink:

In my new solution, I now use a KVM extender with the touch screen. The extender runs HDMI and USB over up to 50 meters of Cat6, so my rack and (small form factor) PC can sit safely backstage and connect to my keyboard rig. With this extender, I can also connect my keyboards with the PC via the same cable - no noticeable latency.

So one little box sitting on top of my lower keyboard, connected

  • via HDMI to the touchscreen
  • via USB to the screen (for touch)
  • via USB to both keyboards for USB MIDI
  • via USB to a trackball on my keyboard (in case I need a mouse-type device to do some twiddling of my setups

I can control the Cantabile PC via touchscreen, mouse and the two MIDI keyboards. No further connection needed beyond one Cat6 cable between my stage rig and the backstage rack. Not quite correct in my case - I have a second connection: a small multicore for microphone, guitar, in-ear and/ or keyboard monitor.

Works nicely in my studio / rehearsal room so far - yet to test it in a real live environment, but promising so far.

Cheers,

Torsten

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The Web UI will never do everything - in particular I don’t have any plans to add song editing and there’s no good way to show a plugin’s UI through the web UI. Assuming you don’t need that, I’d be interested to hear what else you’d like that’s missing.

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I have not used the web interface in a HOT MINUTE, and my setup currently isn’t conducive to testing - so I’m ALL ABOUT possibly having missed something.

So, yeah - a plugins UI is probably a showstopper for my use case. I absolutely understand that is probably wildly impractical at this point, and I don’t use it SUPER often in our shows, but I use it enough that I’d have to have some kinda workaround. I might be able to get there if there is a way to display a plugins parameters? Like select “feedback” on my delay plugin, and have it show a bar (or radial) visual of the current value?

And song editing…eh…that’s one I’d also have to have some kinda workaround for my use case. It would just mean I’d need a different setup for rehearsals than the show itself.

I mean, I spend 90% of my time doing things the Web UI could do. I actually change songs with a midi board (because we don’t have predetermined setlists, we change songs based on the audience reaction), so I use the Grid View a lot, but mostly as visual feedback and confirmation that “yes, Cantabile is on the right song” - and the WebUI is great for that.

I am asking that the WebUI just be the local interface itself. I am aware that is an unjustifiable request - so no, I’m not saying that I’m honestly asking for that. But that’s kind of my starting point to “if that’s not the tool for my job, then what do I do instead?”

I hope that makes sense and doesn’t come off too presumptuous. I so greatly value all the work you do.

Man a lot of that sounds real nice! What KVM extender are you using? because a quick google of available models looks like they’re $$$$$. (read the thread you linked. Though the link you posted in that thread does not/no longer has a price listed - do you remember around what it cost or should I contact them?)

Do you still feel the same, that the latency is not noticeable over the extender?

So I tried the “monitor on a mic stand” for a while - though the only one I had available was a rather hefty, older 17in monitor - and the most stable, heaviest mic stand I had was still not stable enough to hold it up in a way that made me safe. It never fell over, but it was swaying like hay on a regular basis - not even in wind, just from the little bit of flex that we would cause on some (not shoddily built) stages. (on the shoddily built ones…let’s say I have NO idea how it stayed up)

If Plugin GUIs and Song Editing are important then you’ll need to figure out something like what Torsten is describing because I don’t know of anyway to remote a plugin UI except via something like remote desktop. Cantabile’s UI is too complex to duplicate editing through a web interface.

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I bought it at a German online store (specializes in KVM switches and extenders) - cost me 184 EUR, which is around $214. Less than a networked MIDI interface, so I’m fine with that.

I wouldn’t dare that with a 17 in - my 10 in Elecrow touchscreen does nicely, but I usually operate it 2-handed (one to stabilize, one to tap :wink: ).

Yes, feels super-tight. And it should actually be tighter than “classic” midi, which has a very limited bandwidth.

I do my song changing via LivePrompter (a musicians’ teleprompter I built myself) - it is connected bi-directionally to Cantabile, so whenever I call up a new song on LivePrompter, Cantabile changes automatically. I get a quick confirmation pop-up from Cantabile in LivePrompter (on song or state load) so I don’t even need to look at the Cantabile screen. I also control LivePrompter (scrolling, next song) through Cantabile via bindings from my controller keyboard - it’s all very networked, but super-solid so far.

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FWIW: I use a cheap tablet, that I connect to the laptop with wifi - laptop in hotspot mode. Works great! I had a couple of use cases for which the web UI did not meet my needs so I made a custom webUI that does meet my needs - see link below.

One drawback is that the laptop needs a working internet connection for hotspotting to work. That has never been a real issue for gigs - I once had to connect the laptop to 4G internet on my phone but that was not the end of the word.

https://community.cantabilesoftware.com/t/example-of-webui-customisation/4452/2

Recently I do without the tablet; I use the web UI on the laptop - for my needs that works a lot better live than the Cantabile GUI.

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Hi.
I now have 2 setups for different live applications
1 Full Band - piano and controller keyboard (YC61), + Laptop running Cantabile for a wide range of sounds.
2 Cheap Gig - YC61, (for piano , E-piano, basic pads, strings, horns etc + NUC booting into a Cantabile Song with Blue3 VST only, controlled from my YC61 Organ controls.
(Thanks to the YC61 organ sounds being disappointingly ‘sub-optimal’ IMO) :frowning:

I haven’t used ‘No2 setup’ on a gig yet! … but it all tests out OK. The idea was, keep it simple, no need for a screen live, so I checked out the Cantabile WebSever (Hotspot from my Android phone) as a quick control mechanism.
This works really great!

However … I also need to use TeamViewer (or similar) to shut the NUC down. If not, there’s a risk that Cantabile won’t shut down properly and therefore not boot up to just work, without needing some human input to clear the dialogue box.
So … I was thinking, would there be a way to include ‘Shutdown PC’ and Reboot PC’ actions, on the Web Interface itself? (re-boot in case USB doesn’t connect properly or something)

Now … If the Web Interface allowed for creating a setlist too, I could just about use it for my ‘No1 setup’ too and ditch the laptop altogether!
Does anyone else use a similar kind of setup as No2?

Cheers

I must be misunderstanding the situation, because it seems too simple to me. I play with a band that uses Ableton as host which is synced with a backing track player (cymatic) so the sounds switch when they need to. The whole thing runs on a Mac Mini and it simply fits in the custom keyboard stand. There’s a small screen so you can see everything is working correctly and make changes if you have to. And there’s a drawer with a keyboard and mouse. “Tear down” is simply putting the sustain pedal on top of the keyboard, putting the lid on the flight case and taking it off the stand. The entire setup is self contained, minus the stand and power of course.

What exactly is the problem with running an HDMI cable and why do you need to keep the NUC so far away?

EDIT:
For remote editing, someone (i.e. the sound guy) does have to turn the thing on and hook it up to ethernet or wifi hotspot, but then you just remote desktop in and can make changes in between gigs.