I now remember WHY I wanted to add that 'Dis-able MIDI' button ...
Adding an NVC to a project that started without !
If you have a project with NEbula already in the chain, we'd want to transfer the Neb eq parameters that you set into the NVC controller.
With the 'MIDI Dis-Abled' ... you can make changes to the NVC and NOT have it talk to any of your NEBs until you are ready for it to [otherwise the Neb settings would change]. Once you match your settings, then activating MIDI [push button] the NVC is now at the helm.
Just one of those little conveniences to ease the transition.
Wiring up BIDULE ... or METAPlugin for that matter.
Here is a partial screenshot of BIDULE showing an example of the patchbay wiring that I use.
Notice that I have Klanghelm's VU meter in-line to handle 'Gain Staging' control between each Nebula. I also started using Bidule's DUMMY components to help keep the wiring easier to follow.
I've highlighted the MCF-AR utility VST [free on my site] that handles the channel filtering and audio routing for By-pass.
BTW ... this bypass is NOT just a straight disconnect, which usually causes a nasty spike to the system ... this is a gentle transition.
One nice feature with Bidule ... once you have a layout ... you can use the REPLACE feature to switch out to a different Nebula library [keeping the wiring mostly in place. This makes setting up Bidule presets for all the controllers I have very easy.
I didn't understand if gain staging between all the nebula istances in your NVC controllers is auto handled. I mean... I can set the IN volume, but then what happens when I start to boost one EQ band? all the other bands will have an increase in input volume or there is some kind of auto-gain-staging between the istances? I saw something you showed off for that purpose but I didn't understand well if its auto or what. Thanks for the patience
koda wrote:I didn't understand if gain staging between all the nebula istances in your NVC controllers is auto handled. I mean... I can set the IN volume, but then what happens when I start to boost one EQ band? all the other bands will have an increase in input volume or there is some kind of auto-gain-staging between the istances? I saw something you showed off for that purpose but I didn't understand well if its auto or what. Thanks for the patience
Balancing out the Gain staging through a list of plugins [or Nebulas] is fundamental to getting the BEST sonics.
Every change in Eq gain and/or frequency can have a level impact through the rest of the chain.
Although it is not an automatic [AGC] function, the built-in CAL used in every NVC is based on a old-school technique. It provides good accuracy AND, very important, is fast to re-balance [a few seconds].
I use the Klanghelm VU plugin [also FreeG], but the Klang is proving to be the best VST meters I've found to date ... highly recommend ! Holding the CNTRL key and the mouse wheel provides fine adjusts to a 1/10th of a dB.
It is the ONLY time I open a Bidule or Metaplugin chain.
As mindful of gain structure that I've been, I can honestly say that this CAL system has been a huge work-flow improvement ... AND ... hard to believe that AFTER doing a re-balance ... the track sounds even better
If I could figure an 'auto-majic' way to do it ... I'd try ... but for now, this current system blows away the way I worked before ... well, using the NVC as the central controller has totally changed my Nebula work-flow, and more importantly ... the end results
I encourage everyone to try the DEMO ... because I dis-like raving about anything I've worked on [and youse guys probably tired of hearing me say it]
To a related controller ... the NVC-AIR.
Yes ... this library [in current state] has major gain changes in the preset ... if I recall, some presets added more than +12dB of gain to the signal output. I was trying to constantly balance this out to make comparisons and sense of what I heard ... couldn't do it.
Because the NVC-AIR only needs 2 Nebulas to provide full function, I developed a special module that responds to MIDI commands sent from the NVC-AIR ... it is basically a VCA module that can adjust levels in real-time.
With the new CAL function, I've created a 'gain compensation' MAP in the NVC-AIR that is user definable ... but the way I have it currently 'balanced' is working very well.
I've been holding off the release of this controller because I want to bring the new MFC-AR design into this AGC plugin.
The new MFC-AR is both a channel filter [we need to isolate each Nebula] and it provides a very smooth transition when by-passing. The current AGC unit also has smoothing ... but the MFC-AR is even better
I am still bound to the MIDI limits of the current NEBULA ... I hope this capability expands as Nebula develops. This would open many new possibilities!
So if I understand well in the end the built in CAL function does a sort of auto-gain staging between the istances right? You don't have to tweak it by hand each time you tweak one of the istances? Sorry it was not clear to me if that CAL module is auto or it's just a fast way to adjust gain staging that you have to do manually (that of course would break up all the magic of the NVC concept). I mean... workflow: I setup NVC with an EQ with 3-4 bands, flat and I adjust the gain staging to the first nebula eq program (with Klanghelm meter or whatever). Then I start to boost one of the bands (let's say the first program always for simplicity) do I have to go to the CAL page and adjust manually the gain stage of the other bands before tweaking the other bands or this happens automatically? If that's not the case, there were some very nice little AGC around that you could look around to integrate. I wrote to one of the dev of those, he did it for hobby but it was working great, I'm sure he'll be glad to talk with you on how to eventually integrate such thing. It should be "super volu" vst plug if I'm not wrong (btw if you are interested I'll do a better search)
The CAL module is a signal generator with various tone shapes [OSC], noise, freqs, and levels.
The 'balancing' method is manual. I happen to use the Klanghelm meters to adjust level between each NEB instance. It is a manual adjustment.
Something to keep in mind ...
Gain staging is always working within a flux ... it is a dynamic event.
2nd ... working at a 'proper' operating level [-18db], we have built-in HEADROOM. This provides the elbow room we need to work without having to glue eyes to meters.
It is correct that settings [and corresponding level] from one plugin to the next will elevate or lower levels through the chain. That is usually the case.
We don't necessarily 'see' this with fully integrated hardware [or an algo plugin] ... but there are all kinds of internal levels going on. Most times we only get an INPUT and OUTPUT level control. Again ... a proper 'operating level' gives us the headroom to work within.
When we do make changes, say twisting a bunch of EQ settings ... yes, I go to the CAL module and then check the meter levels. If they are not exactly on 'zero', do I change the level ? MAYBE. If one meter is off the scale, I can easily see and adjust.
When I want to fully balance the chain, the CAL module makes it convenient to quickly get to 'Unity'.
The example of the NVC-AIR and the AGC plugin is a different beast. In this case, we are balancing the Presets default level. Since the AIR presets are static, there are no user adjustments that influence the output level [like an EQ].
I've seen the 'Super-Vol' site and plugin. I did try it awhile back. For whatever reason, I did not add it to my work-flow. I'm interested in the concept. I do have some ideas I've been floating in my mind to deal with this.
I still have a lot to learn about programming. I'm hitting my 1st year anniversary soon. I enjoy the self-taught method, but it can be a slow process when done in spare time. I guess being a slow learner adds to it
Anyway ... appreciate the questions/ comments anytime. I hope I clarified better.