Instrument tracks and multis

Hello there,

I’m afraid I don’t understand how Instrument track works.

I take it that every time an Instrument Track is created and you assign a VST instrument to it, there will be a new VST instrument instance.

Let’s say I create an Instrument track and assign Halion Sonic to it. Then I load Piano sound on channel 1 and Bass sound on channel 2. In order to play both Halion Sonic channels on their own separate tracks so that both tracks use the same instance of Halion Sonic, I have to create one MIDI track in addition to the already existing Instrument Track, because I can’t assign the same VST instrument instance to more than one Instrument track.

So, the Halion Sonic Instrument Track would be used for Piano on Channel 1 and a separate Midi track would be created and assigned to the instantiated Halion Sonic instance and midi output would be set to channel 2 to play the bass sound. Is this the right way to do it?

Thanks for your help, I hope this makes sense.


Yes, this is exactly the way to do it. You understand it correctly.

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Like Martin said this is correct. However there is no requirement to split out the different Channels onto separate Tracks. In your example, using 2 Tracks makes perfect sense. But say you are working on a string quartet with each instrument on a different MIDI Channel 1-4. In this situation having all 4 voices contained in a single MIDI Part on an Instrument Track with no additional MIDI Tracks generally makes more sense.



I would like just to add, you have to set the MIDI Channel to Any on the Instrument track in this case.


and why you couldn’t?
On the contrary, it is easier
I only create instrument tracks and no midi tracks
This is precisely the interest of the instrument tracks

And to add to the idea of using a single track with multiple midi channels, it can be useful in some workflows to use separate lanes for each midi channel. e.g. use lane 1 for channel 1, lane 2 for channel 2, etc.

Also: Cubase makes it pretty easy to split a multiple channel track into lanes or vice versa.

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Yikes, I never even considered this as a possibility - intriguing idea.

It has limitations, since you can’t force a lane into a channel, and it won’t automatically move a note to a different lane when you change its channel.

But it can be handy to visualize a multi channel track a little better, and it’s fine for editing if you don’t intend to change channels on individual notes that much.

For a day I lived in a perfect world. :grinning:
But thanks for the ideas!

But the split function is not aware of channels, is it? It is only aware of takes, right? If I have an Instrument track with midi on different channels, what is the prerequisite for the split to work so that every lane shows midi for only one specific channel? :confused:

  • Select the desired multi-channel MIDI part and go to the MIDI menu

  • Right click on the desired multi-channel MIDI part

    and on the resulting drop down menu choose

  • Dissolve Part, which triggers a dialog box:


  • check Dissolve to Lanes
  • press the Process button
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Excellent! Thank you very much!
These concepts around Cubase are very confusing at times and the manual, well, let’s say it is comprehensive but not a user’s guide; I would’ve never guessed to look for an answer under ‘Midi Functions’.

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Agreed. Cubase is a big beast of rich functionality assembled over a few decades.

And that creates not only a huge body of possible knowledge, but also unavoidable inconsistencies and resulting confusion.