Added External Instrument Only Showing on One Instrument Track and VSTi Rack

I have managed to add my Ketron SD1 keyboard as an external instrument.
I get sound to play back perfectly on midi channel and instrument channel.
However in the track inspector drop down virtual instruments menu,my newly added external instrument only shows on the first instrument track and not on instrument tracks 2 and 3,. ALSO, Only One Instance of my newly created external instrument shows up in THE VSTI INSTRUMENT RACKS IN RIGHT HAND ZONE, I have added a few images,any help would be much appreciated.

Could you post screenshots displaying what’s in the External instruments panes of your Studio > Audio Connections window ?

Additionaly, I wouldn’t try to use a device set as an instrument rack with an instrument track. The addition of an instrument rack in a project creates both a track in a sub-folder in the VST Instruments folder and eventually a MIDI track (or more, using different MIDI output channels) connected to it. I use the Add instrument rack… option in the VSTi pane of the right zone for this.

EDIT : not seeing your instrument as available in your added instrument tracks is normal, as there can be only one instance of a given external instrument used. From which, as you have already used it in the output routing of your first instrument track, it is no longer available for the others.

It’s all correct. That’s the way Cubase is designed. Only one track per External Instrument.
Also shocked me when I first stumbled upon this fact.

Luckily I can record multiple tracks from my keyboard (Backing Styles) on the VI Track.
So does that mean that we need to add an external instrument for every VI Track.
I not the brightest but I think that should maybe be upgraded in Cubase ?

Thanks for your input Cubic 13, one external instrument per VI Track seems a bit limited,but I don’t know enough about it.

Its all turning back to a usual Cubase Disaster,this is so complicated its just not funny,quite pathetic really,it shouldnt be this difficult.
All i want to do is to be able to record the backing stlyes Multiple midi channels in real time, parts for example Bass on Channel 5,chords 6,7,8, Drums on Channel 10 straight from my keyboard Ketron SD1 and play them back and render them in place in Cubase.
I would prefer to render in place using the sounds from Ketron SD1 but at this stage of the game i would settle for Halion Sonic SE
When i think ive got it sussed Cubase just seems to do its own thing.
So here are the Basics My Ketron SD1 Has 3 Midi Ports Midi in 1 GM,Midi in 2 Which Is Set Up To allow Midi Accordions Left Hand Chord To Trigger The Backing Styles From The Ketron SD1 and Midi Thru which i think is for linking up keyboard to keyboard
Ketron SD1 has numerous Midi Channel Transmit and MIdi Channel Settings
I have managed to get the Ketron SD1 to record and playback on Cubase as a SINGLE CHANNEL MIDI TRACK OR VIRTUAL INSTRUMENT TRACK, i cannot get cubase to Render in place midi to audio
As for recording multiple midi channels i got it to do something just the one time and now i cant get it back.
So in the unlikely event that Greg Ondo is going to knock on my door,am i looking for someone to sort this problem for me and i will pay them for their trouble.
Hope to hear from someone,thanks,allyupo

Ok, Let’s try to take things one after the other…

  • If you have defined your Ketron keyboard as an external instrument, it should appear as so in the External Instrument pane of your Studio > Audio Connections window. Could you make a screenshot of it?
  • Once the external instrument is defined, the best to do is to set it as an instrument rack (Add rack instrument… command in the contextual menu of the right zone, VSTi pane) in the project. You should be able to select your Ketron in the Steinberg > External plug-ins catagory of the available instruments list. This will immediatly create a subfolder dedicated to your Ketron in the VST instruments one. Additionaly, you 'll probably be asked to create a MIDI track for it.
  • After this, nothing prevents you from adding as much MIDI tracks as MIDI channels needed with, for each of them, the Output routing set to your Ketron vie the relevent MIDI port, only the MIDI output channels being different one from the other (I guess that you have a bi-directional MIDI connection between your DAW and the Ketron keyboard).

At this stage, you should be able to record all what is MIDI related.

After this, recording the related audio is a matter of creating all the needed tracks, with their input routing set accordingly to the audio outputs of your keyboard and set them as ‘Record enable’ before starting the record, the MIDI tracks playing in the background. This is the more ‘primitive’ way to do so.

Another way (available only with the Pro version of Cubase, I think) is to use a ‘dummy’ bus to be able to record directly both MIDI and audio signals coming from your keyboard. Here is the way to proceed : what works for the multitimbral sampler used in this example, works also for an external instrument, as they are both set as rack instruments (in the VST instruments folder) in the project.

Beside this, forget the Render in place command when dealing with external instruments : we have to record them in real time, as they are existing devices for which the real world time can’t be stretched, contrarily to virtual computing objects.


So, yes, only one INSTRUMENT track for one external instrument.
BUT: you can make a MIDI track (on MIDI Channel 2 or so) and at the same time add an AUDIO track that listens to your SD1 keyboard.
Mind this:
When you configured your SD1 as external instrument, you had to assign an input in Cubase. What I did, was giving my external instrument a ‘free, not used’ input from one of those Digital options. This way, you can make as many audio track as you want that will play your SD1.

Cubic 13 I am really really grateful for your detailed advice and will do as you ask,I am in a bit of physical pain just now so I need to see how I feel on a daily basis, I will send the screen shot and trying adding a rack instrument. After I get that done I will slowly try and follow what your saying, it is a bit beyond my intelligence so I will need a few attempts.
The funny thing is that somehow i did manage to render in place ,I think it was the VI Track as I was left with an audio copy of the track underneath.
Funnily enough I noticed the the record enable light was switched on,. On my Yamaha Steinberg N12 desk
I agree with you the first thing is to be able to set up the midi in the correct manner consistently and then move to the next step in the puzzle.
To be able to get this working is my equivalent of the Holy Grail lol, I will get back to you as soon as I can, health permitting
Thank you

Okay Fantom I am trying to process and understand what your saying.
I added a stereo OUTPUT to my external instrument
So are you saying that each midi channel needs to be routed to another separate stereo output channel ? For example outputs 5 and 6 which are free.
To be honest I am struggling with the basic midi recording side of things just now but I will try to understand what your saying and try it out.

First, in the External Instrument setting, select ‘Not Connected’ for that stereo output you assigned to the instrument. Like in this screenshot: (I use an Integra7 as external instrument)

This allows you to get that audio channel (to which your SD1 physically is connected) back.

Now you can make MIDI tracks that allow you to record the MIDI of your SD1 keyboard. MIDI tracks allow you to make changes to the NOTES (Keys) you played as required.
But if you want to hear the sound of that SD1, you need to make an AUDIO track as well. This audio track needs as Input the analog, physical input of the SD1 to your audio interface.
When playing, on both the MIDI and the Audio channel, you should set ‘Monitoring’ to On. (or arm record)

Ah ha, sounds good I will give it a try tonight when the wife is at the bingo, what your saying make sense,I will let you know how I get on.

Hi Fantom I tried what you said, I didn’t connect to the the audio device,I think basically it’s routing through my control room which I do know is set up correctly ,I can hear record and hear play back,without monitoring anything,do I still need to add another audio track ?

Hi Cubic 13 I seem to have the basic midi side of things working, there was a bit of faffing with the Ketron on its midi channels.
Still a long way to go,my idea was to play backing styles from ketron as format 0 and then Dissolve this into separate midi tracks using Ketron SD1 as the sound source as opposed to Halion Sonic SE.
It is working but I need to do a bit of reading and experimenting with midi to figure out what works best for me.
I still don’t know how I’m going to convert the midi or vi tracks into audio if as you say ,rendering doesn’t work.
Have you any idea how it’s done

You mentioned
Another way (available only with the Pro version of Cubase, I think) is to use a ‘dummy’ bus to be able to record directly both MIDI and audio signals coming from your keyboard.
Greg Ondo did a video on this so I’m going to look at that again.
Many thanks

As first approach, by playing the MIDI tracks while recording the audio ones, connected to the audio outputs of your Ketron SD1, all this in real time. We cannot render directly when external instruments are involved : it’s a physical limitation.

The second one is to use the ‘dummy’ bus, as I suggested above. Beside this, I’ll check the Greg Ondo videos : could be interesting…

Just hope that you are feeling better. beside this, let us know how things are going… :slightly_smiling_face:

Cubic 13 here is the link to the Greg Ondo Video, Just Keep winding it back,ive got to do that with everything lol
Rendering from Virtual Instrument Track can definetely be done.
I have some how managed it.

My pain has eased up a bit today so thats brilliant thanks for asking.
Im now going to try this using the midi to usb lead this time as i think i know where i might have went wrong
Here is another Greg Ondo video showing you how to record midi and audio from Virtual Instrument Track
How to Record Audio and MIDI from VST Instruments in Cubase | Q&A with Greg Ondo - YouTube Hope they are of use to you

Fantom Have a look at this Greg Ondo Video,we want to physically connect the audio outputs of the external instrument to the inputs of our audio interface

Midi to USB cables don’t work for me.Using 5 pin midi cables works well as long as it’s single tracks recording.
For me it’s easier just to record to floppy disk believe or not lol and fire the midi file into cubase and dissolve the tracks.
At the end of the day the Ketron SD1 is a great arranger keyboard but it is old.

Yep, it can be done and I probably made myself not clear enough : my point was that it brings nothing (for me…), workflowwise, as :

  • We need a two stage process to record audio : first record the MIDI part and after this, render. All can be done in one pass with predefined audio channels and the ‘dummy’ bus - or even without the latter, actually : all is about setting the input busses correctly in the Audio Connections window.
  • The Render in place process is done in real time, anyway, so there is no actual gain, workflow related, over the use of audio predefined tracks.

Beside this, sorry for the MIDI to USB pitfall, but I’m not really surprised : I have never trusted USB protocol for MIDI related tasks. On my end, I have checked the Greg Ondo video : indeed, he is more or less doing what I have suggested previously with the ‘dummy’ bus solution.

Cubic 13 im just taking a step back, im just going to go back to what works for me,many thanks for your advice,allyupo