I’m thinking about making Ardour a workhorse for performing live with a band using various synths and soundfonts.
The idea is to make my MIDI controller able to use al it’s potentiona to control various plugins live and filter data by MDI channel so I can set up 16 different instruments, each with it’s own plugin controls router to 8 knobs I have, some globals assigned to 9 faders and 9 buttons that all send MIDI CC.
Using the x42-plugins (MIDI filters) I was able to set up Calf-Monosynth on channel 1, Calf-Fluidsynth on channel 2, and ZynAddSubFX drumkit on channel 10 (assigned to 8 drum pads). I tried Ardour’s built-in MIDI channel functinality but it seems to not work when not recording. I still had all instruments react to all MIDI channels, whitch is a show-stopper. Good that there’s a plugin that can do this.
However Ardour doesn’t seem to be able to assign my CC controls to various plugin parameters for live operation, like LMMS does.
In LMMS you can MIDI-learn every single paramater of any plugin or interface element (mixer fader, solo-switch, etc.) to any MIDI CC control with MIDI channel-filtering.
Calf plugins seems to support MIDI-learn on their own, however it looks like Ardour doens’t forwards CC messages to the plugins, because I was unable to use this feature within Ardour.
In LMMS I could use my MIDI controller’s (m-audio Oxygen 49 MKIV) buttons to temporarily enable tapestop or stutter effects live, but I can’t do this in Ardour right now.
I’m thinking about maybe using an external plugin rack for such stuff, but using multiple programs seems to be more difficult and crash-prone then using a single host.
LMMS downside on this is that it has no way of manipulating audio signal in realtime (no way to vocode my voice live) and it’s doesn’t support LV2 plugins, so I’m limited to what instruments I can use there.
My idea is to enable MIDI-learn for all automatable controls allowing them to be accesed via MIDI CC (possibly also OSC) in a live manner when the session transport is stopped.