[ardour-users] Control surface... what is planned ?

MAtt matt_0pr at yahoo.fr
Mon Jan 2 10:42:19 PST 2006

I'm working with 2 Behringer's BCF200 and 1 BCR2000, the 2 BCF to 
control individuals tracks, and the BCR for the selected track
The best control surface would be for me something 'a la' Stagetec, 
there are very good (and expensive !) german digital mixing desk and 
they are highly configurable 'on the fly'. So are the french Innovason 
consoles. That's the bad thing by Yahama, where you can't link any fader 
or button to the parameter you want to usen, it's fixed.
The Midi protocol seems to me the best, because of his 

I'm working on ardour with 4 layers of 16 faders, with Mute/Solo/Pan 
control on each track :
- Track 1-16
- Track 17-32
- Track 33-48
- Masters (groups, FX returns, etc...)
In cubase you can have 'Banks' wich are midi-recallable to define these 

What would be very good in ardour, from the most important to the less 
(and that i'm using in cubase) is :
-  A "selected channel" on which you can control the sends (aka auxs) : 
Level, On/Off, the Pan (why not surround with a joystick - i'm doing 
that in cubase), polarity,  and a generic set of plugin, present on each 
track : a trim,EQ, comp.
- It would be very nice to open/close plugs windows with a Midi CC, so 
you could view your EQ/Comp window with one button. On cubase, i can 
edit EQ and comp so, and when i push the push function of -said- the 
third encoder of my BCR, it open the machine "plugged" at the output of 
the 3rd Aux. Very nice to edit a reverb.
- having a midi return of the meters to view them on the control surface.
- a play/write automation midi link of the whole selected track 
(volume,pan, solo, mute, plugs.. etc...)
- a midi return control of the record's state button
- having a link beetween the menus, edits, keyboards shorcuts and midi CCs
- having macros recallable with one button

If all these thing were implemented, it could be very nice.
Any controller that sends midi could be used, but i would have a 
preference for :
- the behringer BCF/BCR series, because they are very cheap
- an old 01V because it can't be used for anything different now ;-)
- DM2000
- A big one 'a la' stagetec with 48 faders, 4 to 10 encoders per track, 
a big central 'piece of encoders' for the selected track and 
supplementary controls, and a lot of buttons to call functions in the 
soft. I know this use 1000 midi CCs or more, and i don't know about the 
'bandwidth' of a midi signal, but i don't have problems with my BCFs, 
neither with an DM2000 on Protools

With such a control surface, with the simplicity of having a hardware 
machine in insert/send/"where you want" by jack, I would not be 
surprised that the number of studios based on ardour would increase greatly.

I know this is heavy, it's only the way i see ardour in the next years.
I know that Digidesign has made a digital mixing desk, and I don't see 
why we couldn't do that with ardour in some (!!!!) time.

Excuse me one more time for my very bad english. I hope you can understand.

Greetings from france, Have a nice year,


Jesse Chappell wrote:

>On 1/2/06, MAtt <matt_0pr at yahoo.fr> wrote:
>>Does someone have an idea about future implementation of control
>>surfaces with ardour ? Is it planned to have a "selected channel" stuff
>>'à la' cubase ? Will it be possible to control, for example, the EQ and
>>comp plugin (ladspa AND vst) of the selected channel ?
>The scope of ardour's future control surface support is still open to
>discussion.  But for small surfaces I can see that a notion of
>controls that affect the "selected channel" would be quite useful. 
>What control surface do you have?
>>I'm working with ardour compiled on a demudi distro with vst support,
>>for all my "little" projects, and with cubase, but i can't work with
>>ardour for my big projects for the lack is this domain. However, the
>>linux environment is FAR better than these damned ASIO drivers, and I
>>hope the control via midi will be soon working with ardour/jack, etc...
>If your midi controller has presets, you might be able to set up
>something to control a large session today, but it will take a bit of
>effort.  If you can explain how Cubase allows you to do what you want
>with your controller, it will help define some features for the future

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