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Walk-through tutorial for Bidule as VST host in Windows (was: Re: bidule)

On 23 jun 2007, at 01.25, Jens Wolters wrote:

> Hi Per,
> you had a link with a pic of your bidule setup on loopers delight  
> some time ago. Can you send me that link again?
> That was really interesting.

Hi Jens,

I'm copying this to the Loopers Delight so anyone else also  
interested in Bidule can pick up on it. Here's a screen shot: http:// 

And here's a walk-through following the signal chain:

On the top there is the audio interface and I'm using three mono  
inputs: (1) Microphone for sax+flute+voice, (2) Instrument line in  
for EWI analog signal, (3) Instrument line in for electric guitar.  
All three inputs are set to different levels to match the variations  
in instrument output level. This is extremely important when working  
with software like the AmpliTube Jimi Hendrix because otherwise you  
miss out on that cool dynamic distortion algorithms that does follow  
the dynamics in your playing.

On the sax/flute/voice input there is a bidule filter to cut out bass  
and add some high frequencies. Since I'm looping this is essential to  
make layers blend well in the loop without sounding too muddy at the  
lower end (more of this "reversed mixing" technique is implied by the  
choice of VST effects in the chains). For the EWI and guitar inputs I  
have chosen to initially shape the tone with the Amplitube plug-in, I  
like that better for those instruments.

The "Gain_6" is a Bidule input level control binded to one of the  
FCB1010's expression pedals. I use it for violin-like note attacks  
when playing guitar and to prevent acoustic feedback between played  
notes when using the mic over loud PA's.

Next in line is the Audio Switcher bidule. This is where incoming  
MIDI Program Change commands from my FCB1010 pedal board mutes all  
following effect chains except the one corresponding to the received  
MIDI PC. This is how you set it up:

1. Click "Parameters" at the top menu row in the Bidule window.
2. In the upper left window of the now opened Parameter window,  
locate the Audio Switcher object and open its parameter list by  
clicking the small "+".
3. For binding to MIDI Program Change #1 select "Processing Mode  
Output 1".
4. In the window to the right, locate the first of the VST plug-ins  
in the chain and open its parameter list by clicking the small "+".
5. Locate the parameter "Mode" and select it (should be fairly high  
up in the list).
6. Click the "Link" button below (you will now see this binding turn  
up at the bottom window under "Source" and "Target".
7. Repeat step 4, 5 and 6 for all other VST plug-ins in this effect  

One Audio Switcher object has 16 tags from where you drag a virtual  
cable for the following, alternative, effect chains. Only one of the  
effect chains is active at any give moment and the muted chains are  
completely taken off the CPU load.

I'm assembling all effect chain's outputs with an Audio Matrix  
object. I could as well pipe them all directly into Mobius stereo  
input 1-2 but I kept it like this because I can then easily add a  
reverb when playing concerts in a too dry sounding venue. (adding  
ambience both to live inputs and Mobius outputs).

Since this is Bidule mainly set up for studio recording I'm leading  
every Mobius output individually into the audio interface to send  
them to a recording computer as individual channels through optical  
ADAT. I noticed though that Mobius does send out Track 1 on the audio  
interface channels 1,2 and 4. This means everything happening on  
Mobius Track 1 is also merged into the right stereo channel of Mobius  
Track 2, in the recording. I can work around it by cabling my live  
input to a different audio interface output and not use Mobius Track  
1 (which I'm almost not doing anyway, because some actions on that  
Track sends MIDI Start Song command but not the same actions on other  
Mobius Tracks... anyway that's OT here).

This was a studio multiple output setup, but for a simple live set-up  
use only output 1-2 of the audio interface and merge all Mobius  
Tracks before sending to PA (in Mobius you can set the "VST Output"  
individually for all 8 tracks).

Oh... one last note. I do not use Mobius function "Configuration /  
Global Parameters / Monitor Audio Input". Instead, as you can see, I  
have cabled my live input directly to the audio interface output 1-2  
(will change this to 9-10 though to fight the Mobius track channel  
output bug). The reason is that I don't want my live playing signal  
to be affected by the dBlue Glitch plug-in that I have put between  
Mobius Track outputs 2, 3 and 4 and the audio interface outputs 3-4,  
5-6 and 7-8.

Greetings from Sweden

Per Boysen
www.boysen.se (Swedish)
www.looproom.com (international)