Channel Strip could be amazing with some tweaks

As someone who has their go-to 3rd party plugins, the channel strip has been an incredibly underutilized feature within Cubase for me. That said, I can see it being an amazing space for more modular work flow given a few extra functions.

  1. Load 3rd party plugins. This one pretty much goes without saying, but being able to use my plugin of choice within the channel strip would instantly make it more usable. A custom interface like what the current modules have wouldn’t be possible of course, but pulling from another DAW that shall not be named in this forum, you could have generic assignable parameters that users can then map to the plugins parameters. Similar to the compressor and maximizer modules, an edit button could be included that opens up the actual plugin UI.

  2. Increase the number of slots. This basically goes hand in hand with the last point, but assuming you could load 3rd party plugins, 6 modules would of course be pretty limiting. Maybe just have a scroll slider at the bottom like the mix console has for navigating Channel Strips containing more then 6 modules.

  3. Parallel channel strips. Now this is where I really think the Channel Strip window could become an extremely powerful asset. Currently, the Inserts section of the Channel Settings window sits left of the Channel Strip section. At the top of the Inserts you have the option to show the Channel Strip in a traditional vertical fashion. Since this section simply mirrors the main Channel Strip section, I think the screen space would be better utilized as a “chain” selector/generator where you create and mix together multiple Channel Strips. You simply click on the “chain” you want to edit, and the Channel Strip section will display the plugins on said chain. Put some sort of “+” button near the top where you can create new chains, and also have the usual volume, mute, solo, etc buttons for each one.

  4. Macros. I think this could be a great addition for the Channel Settings window in general, but especially when paired with the Channel Strip given the aforementioned features were added. With these you could assign multiple parameters from multiple plugins to one easy to use knob/slider. You could place these simply at the bottom of the Channel Strip section, or below what would be the “chain” section as mentioned above. Similar to where the EQ display within the vertical version of the Channel Strip currently sits.

And that’s it. I realize at this point it goes far beyond what a channel strip is in the traditional sense, but in my option the Channel Strip section is already designed in a way that would suite these features and would make much more sense then designing an entirely new section for these features.