I use MC8 Pro Studio for recording/mixing/mastering/noodling around but I also play live keys a lot in different venues. I'd like to see the next version of Mixcraft have more features tailored for those who are using MC live.
1. Right now my main live setup is running two midi keyboards into Mixcraft and arming the respective midi controllers to the tracks I want them to control. To switch sounds I have to mute/unmute the desired tracks or quickly cross-fade which can become very cumbersome with the memorization of what mute buttons control which sound. Doing this in the middle of a song is even harder.
I would like to be able to create "scenes" where at the push of a button I can switch to totally new settings instantly. For example, if I'm using a basic grand piano vst with some reverb on my 1st midi controller and an ambient pad with some delay on the 2nd midi controller and I want in the middle of the song to switch the 1st controller to an organ tone with an EQ plugin(with saved settings) and the 2nd controller to a synth lead sound with a delay plugin it would be great to have "scenes" so with 1 button on your controller you can switch all of this seamlessly. The alternative right now is to quickly mute the tracks you don't want and try to simultaneously unmute the ones you need.
I know with one midi controller you can just setup some settings on the 1st track and then have your other sounds on subsequent tracks and switch to them when you need. But for someone who may have 2+ controllers hooked up that doesn't cut it for live use.
(P.S. I would still like to be able to trigger samples/backing track audio in each "scene". A plus would also be being able to use the "Performance Pannel" inside scenes.
2. I would like to be able to assign different plugins to certain VST's in a single track. Currently if you add a plugin to a track it affects every VST in that track's chain. If one wanted the bottom half of the keyboard to control a synth bass and the top half a Rhodes sound and wanted to add a reverb plugin but only have it affect the Rhodes VST you can't. I know you can create two tracks and arm them so that the 1st with the synth bass VST is assigned to the bottom half of the controller and then the 2nd track with the Rhodes VST is assigned to the top half of the controller but this goes back to suggestion #1 above, if I wanted to then switch to another sound I couldn't do it without either muting these 2 tracks and unmuting another set of armed tracks or unarming them and then switching them.
One way this could be implemented in future versions is being able to connect and control different VST's on the same track to send tracks instead of one static send knob for each track. In the page where you add VST's and plugins you can control the volume and pan of each VST. A send knob could be added there for each separate VST on the track.
3. I would like to be able to route the metronome to different audio devices. This comes in handy when playing live and wanting to sync up time-based effects and arps with the rest of the band and needing to send a metronome to the group's in-ears. I had a gig about 2 years ago with my band where we were playing a very electronic heavy set. For one of the songs we used about 6 different midi controllers all hooked up to MC7. We were using a lot of arps and delays so we needed everything to be in sync. What I did was create my own metronome track and routed it to an output track that outputted to a different audio device than I was using for my VST's. We then sent the metronome line to our in-ears instead of the front of house PA.
4. If MC adds the feature of "scenes" for live playing it would be great to assign a separate BPM to each "scene". Say if I have one song that is 145bpm, I'm using time-based effects, the metronome is able to be sent from MC only to the band's in-ears, and the next song is 77bpm, it would be most convenient to have each "scene" an assigned bpm. That way the internal clock, metronome, and time-based effects are all synced up when switching sounds/songs/scenes.
5. I know I'm suggesting a lot of live performance features. If these are implemented it may be best to then add a separate "Performance Mode" or "Performance Page" that is setup differently than the regular mixer and track pages suited for live performance "scenes".
Now on to some more basic MC suggestions.....
6. I love the new feature MC 8 has where you can add FX on the side of the track instead of having to open up the FX page. I would like to see a power off/on button added next to each plugin on the track. Currently to turn off/disable or turn on/enable a plugin you have to open the plugin and uncheck/check it or go to the FX list page and do it there. It would be great to be able to do that on the track itself. It would be more efficient.
7. I would like to be able to copy effects from one track to another. Right now you can drag a plugin to another track but there's no option to copy it. Sometimes I want to copy a plugin and its settings to another track but can't without duplicating the whole track or saving the preset in the plugin and opening the same plugin in the other track and finding the preset. It would be much more efficient to drag and copy plugins to different tracks.
8. Can you currently make MC a slave to an external clock? If I hook some kind of drum machine or metronome by midi can I control Mixcraft's master clock from it and change BPM's? This would make it possible to sync MC's time-based effects, arps, and samples to an external device.
9. It would be great if Mixcraft could be used as a ReWire application, or even better a VST, in other DAWs and software.
bigaquarium wrote: 3. Find a way to audition VST presets a little faster, seems a lot slower with 8, even in 32 bit native.
4. Option for new track with duplicate settings to the selected track.
5. Drag and drop empty "pallete" window to put frequently used stuff on it, whether effect chains, vsti's, quantize settings, whatever. Some kind of consistent icon handle for grabbing stuff and putting it there.
I know these are a lot of features that would be completely new in the live performance area of things. I really like Mixcraft and the way a lot of it works for recording, mixing, and mastering, but for years now I've had to do lots
of workarounds to make it suite my live needs. I've recently considered purchasing some software tailored for live use such as Cantabile 3 as MC lacks in this area. I would like to be able to keep MC's on-board sounds for live playing but wouldn't be able to if I switched to something else. I've been with MC since version 5. I have TONS
of saved presets inside MC and I'm not aware of any way I could transfer them if I switched to another a live performance software. I'd love to be able to use MC it for live use.
Thanks for considering my boatload of suggestions!