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Topic: I need a VSTi host for live performance

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  1. #1

    I need a VSTi host for live performance

    Hello!

    Today im using a ton of hardware synths on stage, but now, the quality of the softsynths are getting really superb. At the studio im using primary Omnisphere, Kontakt, the Arturia synths and some vir pianos. I really wanna take those on stage!
    Now, ive found a host called Forte from Brainspawn. Can i count on that one? i dont want any crash on stage I cant find much info on that program on the net besides the brainspawn site. Can anyone recommend something else?
    Ive planned to have a extra laptop with the same programs/vstis so if i get a crash i just plug my soundcard to the other "backup" laptop.
    Any suggestions?

    Yeah im aware of my poor english

  2. #2

    Re: I need a VSTi host for live performance

    Hello,

    Forte is the most popular VST Host for Windows Systems. There is also Cantabile (freeware) and VST-Stack (from Steinberg).

    But none of these work really stable on my laptop, which is the reason I hesitated to use VSTis on stage. But I have to say my laptop (Dell Inspiron 6400) isn't the most stable device at all (random crashes and BSODs).

    However I felt that loading the VSTis in a real DAW (Cubase or Sonar) is the most stable option.

  3. #3

    Re: I need a VSTi host for live performance

    Cantabile is very good. Also Phrazor. Both stable.
    Marcelo Colina

  4. #4

    Re: I need a VSTi host for live performance

    Cantabile. Trouble-free.

  5. #5

    Re: I need a VSTi host for live performance

    I use Plogue Bidule for exactly this purpose. I've used the cantible that comes with Ivory, but I'm not sure if that's the same as the version being discussed here.

    Bidule is really fantastic in concept. It's like having a big empty room, and an endless supply of hardware modules and cables. It starts as just a blank canvas, then you drag out vst modules onto it. These modules are simply represented as named boxes with visible inputs and outputs for midi and audio as needed. You can connect these inputs and outputs in any configuration desired using an endless supply of virtual cables that you drag between the modules. Ultimately, your asio device is instanced onto the canvas and you feed it's outputs with whichever signals you want.

    Bidule has a few shortcomings though which have started to annoy me, but I still haven't found a better replacement. One is that multicore is not supported well at all. There's a slight nod to multicore, but it has proved completely useless to me with my typical live layouts. What it really needs is a true multicore scheduler.

    The other shortcoming is that I've found no clean way to automatically disable the processing of modules that are not currently in use. So, if I need to have 10 vst instances to play a given live set, I have to insure that all can be burning their idle cpu load together.

    I also get the idea that development on this is somewhat backburnered, as I think the same company is partnered with Garritan and does Aria.

    Apart from these issues, I'd highly recommend bidule. There's a free version which is not limited as I recall, but just nags you every time you save. It's only $80 as I remember to purchase.

    Also, I'm a game software engineer, and I've have been toying with the idea of writing my own asio based vst host. The multicore issue in bidule has really come to a head for me, so I may develop something more specific than bidule to address my individual needs better. There are sometimes live sets where when I'd like to run Garritan strad + gofriller + gpo strings + multiple convolution reverbs + Ivory + B4. It's also come up where I want a second keyboard player to trigger sounds within bidule, but a single core has not been able to handle this so far. I'd also like a 64 to 32 bit bridge so that some of my older vst's won't get left behind.

    -Eric

  6. #6

    Re: I need a VSTi host for live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by Chrisboy View Post
    Hello,

    Forte is the most popular VST Host for Windows Systems. There is also Cantabile (freeware) and VST-Stack (from Steinberg).

    But none of these work really stable on my laptop, which is the reason I hesitated to use VSTis on stage. But I have to say my laptop (Dell Inspiron 6400) isn't the most stable device at all (random crashes and BSODs).

    However I felt that loading the VSTis in a real DAW (Cubase or Sonar) is the most stable option.
    Cantabile freeware??

  7. #7

    Re: I need a VSTi host for live performance

    Many great answers guys!
    How are those programs (like Plogue Bidule) for scene changing? I mean, in one song, im using 4 synths with multiple patch changing for each synth. In Forte you can just press a button on the GUI for a new song and then automaticly replaces the synths and patches.. or you can just have a playlist and just choose what song you want to play..

  8. #8

    Re: I need a VSTi host for live performance

    Hi Omnihead,

    can`t answer your question, but jump in here as you use Omnisphere and shortlist Forte (Demo?) as host. I`m not sure if this is generally the case but here I have problems in using Omni Multis on Forte as Forte doesn`t rember Multi-Settings. So I´m only able to use single patches. I also know this is a problem for other Forte users.

    If you don`t observe these issues please forget about this posting, if you do please keep this in mind when you make a decision.

    regards, humphrey
    C5, Forte, Cantabile, Komplete 7, OP-X Pro-II, KORE2, EOS, Halion 3, HSO, FM7, B4, VB3, Sylenth1, virt. Guit., Minimoog V, Stylus RMX exp, Omnisphere, Vista Home Premium 64, Q6600, Gigabyte EP45-DS3R, 8GB RAM Mushkin, 4 Samsung Harddisks / 1,5 TByte, RME Hammerfall DSP with Multiface, Motu Midi Express 128, NI Kore 2, Motif ES7, Fantom XR, Wavestation SR, Plugiator, TC M-One XL, ADA8000

  9. #9
    Senior Member Steve_Karl's Avatar
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    Re: I need a VSTi host for live performance

    +1 for Forte.
    I haven't used it live but it's awesome in the studio and it's also obvious how it would be very powerful in a live performance.

    You can create a "rack" which can be very big and very complicated, containing many VSTi(s), audio output routings, midi routings, volume settings etc. and everything is saved in that one file.

  10. #10

    Re: I need a VSTi host for live performance

    could someone give link to this forte?

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