Add Instrument Track - Tab to Instrument Field

Is there a key command to the “Add Instrument Track” command that can put you in the Instrument box so you can quickly type an instrument to add that you want? I can tab but it only tabs between the buttons. On a Mac I can type command+B for Browse, Command+C for Cancel and Command+A for Add Track (probably alt for Windows) but nothing puts me in the “No VST Instrument” location except a mouse click.

SteveInChicago I have been able to get this to work with Keyboard Maestro after a bit of trial and error and then starting over again and restarting Cubase. Time will tell if it will work consistently, regardless though I would love to get this to work without depending on third party software.


Not exactly what you asked for, but if you hit Browse, then you can stay on the keyboard. All the presets can be searched.

If you want load particular VSTs, you could create presets for the default patch named, like, ‘!default’ to make it quick to find.

I’ve attempted this but even with a PCIe flash based SDD it still is slower then just clicking and typing the instrument I am after. Oh well I guess I’ll just live with using Keyboard Maestro doing the clicking for me. As always thanks for the help Steve.

Yes, it’s not the same. Makes a good feature request though.

Funny, a long while back I remember searching for a key command and never found one. So I made my own Keyboard Maestro macro that triggers as soon as the Add Instrument Track window appears, then auto-clicks on the Instrument field so you can just start typing. (It’s a little convoluted but it works perfectly)

I made a similar macro that triggers Show All Used Automation every time you open Key Editor on a MIDI region. Surprised there still isn’t an option in Cubase to always display all written CC lanes etc. in Key Editor without having to manually invoke the function.

Thanks orchetect.

I just duplicated everything as far as I could tell that your macro had listed and it is not working for me. I restarted the computer just to be sure.

I am not exactly sure I follow what the macro is doing but it looks like it would cause Keyboard Maestro to constantly be looking at every new window that came up to see if it should apply the macro or not rather than being triggered by a key command to execute the macro.

If it is possible to export the Macro and zip it so it can be uploaded to this forum I’ll see if that works. I’d love to see any other macro’s you have created.

Thanks for the post.

Correct, because

  1. Keyboard Maestro does not have a “Window Trigger” for a macro to be invoked when a Window with a certain title exists, so a timer is necessary to continuously silently check in the background
  2. A key command is not the only possible way the New Instrument Track window can appear. You can get to it from Cubase’s menubar too.

I did not mention that I have the macro nested inside a Maestro folder that only keeps it running within Cubase and not in other apps. I did this so that every time Cubase upgraded (hence, the app name “Cubase 8.app” becomes “Cubase 9.app” etc.) I only had to change the app assignment for the Folder, not every macro inside the folder.

No problem. A lot of my other macros are experimental so I just included the handful of ones that might be useful. Snag them here.

Thanks for the reply and posting those three macro’s. I have been using your Open Recent Project for a while now. Now that I am using Keyboard Maestro I also use the new function in version 6 to leave a menu staying open so I can use the arrow keys to select the reason projects (beats the quick dialog built into Cubase in some ways IMO.

Anyway I can see KM working at trying to run the macro from the icon in the Menulet but still not opening the search for instrument window. I’ll see what I can figure out with playing with this some more. It’s working for you in Cubase 8.0.10 I assume, I’m on OS 10.10.3
Open Recent Menu.kmmacros.zip (18.6 KB)

(Don’t forget about the debug mode in KM…)

Thanks Steve, I have played around with that only a little but need to read through all of the debug actions in Keyboard Maestro.

Orchetect check out the three macro’s attached, they are all working consistently and don’t require Keyboard Maestro to keep looping the 2 macros while Cubase is in front.

I posted one alternative version to the instrument search that works consistently as well but was less logical since the window would be pulled to the front already.

It was good to revisit this because since I last posted about instrument tracks search field a few weeks ago I had learned about the %ActionResult% token which I couldn’t find all that much info on in the forums and documentation well but Peter Lewis helped me learn how to use.

As for the Track Preset search field pulling up the window with a key command and then Shift+tab twice puts you in the search field unlike the Instrument dialog. This is nice because I didn’t have to use an image to click at.



Track Search Field.kmmacros.zip (74.2 KB)

Gave your macro a spin. Multiple ways to skin a cat, for sure. It does work, but a couple suggestions/considerations which may be obvious:

It only works if you use the shortcut key. (As I explained above, the timer works regardless of how the Add Instrument Track window is invoked). Which may be totally fine if you only ever use the shortcut key method.

There is a moderate delay before the Mouse Click event is triggered because you’re using the Found Image function. (Exacerbated for those of us who have multiple monitors or large-resolution screens, ie: multiple 27" monitors because there’s far more pixels for Maestro to search through) I tend to use Found Image as sparingly as possible in macros for that reason especially. If you use a carefully chosen X,Y window coordinate, it’s much faster and uses less CPU cycles to determine where to click. Not a big deal, just to keep in mind. I modified your macro by substituting a hard-coded mouse click and it works fine.

Happy scripting!

Absolultly not as bullet proof in that regards, I do only ever add tracks through key command, nearly all the track types are assigned to control+shift and then a letter. For the track preset one I used the menu command which is more likely to work for anyone regardless of key command assigned in Cubase.

Thanks for this, I use three 23" displays and really want to avoid the image method as well. It clicks in less then 1 second for me. I like your relative to front window method much better and makes the command nearly instant; I have changed that action, thanks for the suggestion and help!