Remote control VST Effects and the Remote Control Editor

Greetings, Hive Mind!

I decided to spend some quarantine time to get more tactile in my mixing workflow. The old MCU is apparently dead (good riddance; the build quality (or lack thereof) of the MK1 faders has lost me many hours over the years), so I went looking for support with our NI Komplete Kontrol 88s.

Transport and fader control works flawless, I have no issues in getting VST instruments controllable - not quick controls. However, UAD plug-ins (effects) for reasons beyond me doesn’t support right clicking and MIDI learn parameters of the plugin. Track QC will force me to keep plugins on specific slots as well as severely limiting the amount of parameters I can readily control, so that doesn’t seem a feasible solution. So I started experimenting with the Remote Control Editor, hoping this would somehow allow me to setup midi controls connected to (any future instance of) a specific plugin. That didn’t work at all.

My questions then are three;

  1. Is this at all possible to set up the Remote Control Editoe with the NI KK s series? Or is it still locked to specific (in the manual unlisted) hardware?

  2. Is my intended use even plausible in the RCE? E.g. does a control surface setup via RCE somehow allow focus to be placed on plugin effect level to allow the control surface to always control a specific plugin as needed?

  3. Would a Mackie Control surface such as the Touch X or equivalent allow me to control insert plugins, including the UAD ones, with tactile controls?



  1. No idea.
  2. That is what it is doing. In the. Use the VST mixer, select the track you would like to map. All insert effect is i under Ins.
  3. MCU can handle insert effects parameters. It up to the plugin vendor what should be shown. But I dont think you will get automation without showing, so most parameters are usually shown. Some do proper names, others just numbers. The display on a MCU has short name and a value. But it is a feedback. I think there are MCU emulation software so you can try it with that.

Could you explain this a little more, the part that is bold in my quote. Plugin subhost? PDC?
The biggest problem i have with Generic Remote is, i do not know how to handle NRPN messages. I have a Mackie C4 and cannot use it at all, because i have no other options for the encoders, except absolute and relative in the flags menue. We need more options for the encoders, especially the relative ones, as there are at least 3 different modes the manufacturers use.
In my case, the Generic Remote is sadly useless. I am not able to handle 14bit messages or have no clue how. The manual of 1186 pages, gives you exact one sentence, regarding NRPN/RPN messages. It is not explained how this whole thing is to setup in a Generic Remote :unamused: :confused: :cry: .
You cannot say, that Cubase has full midi-implentation if this part is not working. There is plenty of hardware that uses 14bit, especially DAW controllers.

The Remote Control Editor is for editing plugin parmeter position/display while using MCU protocol only.
NRPN in the generic remote:
Ive got NRPN working here just fine, but you have to change the “flags” value manualy to 19 in the top row generic remotefile.
I’ts a bug in the generic remote.
You can do this in an xml editor or a simple text editor.
As an example here is a copy of one of my remotefiles with working NRPN control by bcr2000;

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> 2-242001638319 2-252101638319 2-262201638319 2-272301638319 2-282401638319 2-292501638319 2-302601638319 2-312701638319 2-322801638319 VST Mixer-2eqs/band1:gain0 VST Mixer-2eqs/band2:gain0 VST Mixer-2eqs/band3:gain0 VST Mixer-2eqs/band4:gain0 VST Mixer-2eqs/band1:freq0 VST Mixer-2eqs/band2:freq0 VST Mixer-2eqs/band3:freq0 VST Mixer-2eqs/band4:freq0 VST Mixer-2volume0

Also, this guy did some smart scripting, so controlling plugins in cubase with a MCU based controller finaly makes some sense. It is basicly the same idea as what I designed for Lemur/ipad a couple of years ago…

Are you sure about that? I can use the Remote Control Editor without using MCU protocol on my Mackie C4 just with “standard” setting (default).

Again, are you sure about that “flags” setting?
I read here something different:
He wrote to set the flag manualy to 17. You write 19. What is this, kind of lottery?

Would you call a thing like Generic Remote functional, if people need to export/import files, press apply and what not kind of Abrakadabra stuff, in the hope that it might work? IMHO the Generic Remote needs to be removed and completely rewritten from scratch. The current Generic Remote is a infeasible, unacceptable torture for everyone who tries to use it and is a huge timewaster too.

The Cubase manual does not explain anything in detail regarding the Generic Remote. It is written like for a 6-year old child, that can barely read. Everything explained there, is just a one sentence description. There are no examples explained there. There are no presets you could load, to “learn” that thing. Steinberg seriously expects from a user to spend hours, days, weeks… fiddling with broken parts of their software, to get hardware working?
Again, this is a infeasible, unacceptable torture for everyone.

Sadly the Generic Remote, is the only thing to get your hardware working, if there is no support for it. So i am forced to use it. Again, infeasible, unacceptable torture for everyone. What tells us at the end, that Steinberg do not care about it. In nearly two decades no progress, even if the forum is full of people complaining about it. Again, this is a infeasible, unacceptable torture for everyone.

Yes, obviously this guy knows his stuff well. But as you can see, he barely use the Generic Remote. He need to use several external programs to achieve his goal. Max costs 400€ i.e.
It is indeed nice to see, that things are possible, but not with Cubase alone and you better hope, that you do not need to change anything there, to get it work. It is a science of its own and if you do not know what you are doing, it will be a pain in the a s s again. To expect that a normal user is capable of knowing all these tools, is a sarcastic joke.

Rhino is absolutely right with his arguments he wrote here. Especially with “adapting Studio One’s brilliant controller mapping 1:1 ( for both VST2 & VST3 ! ) and put an end to this drama once and for all.”

If you ever looked into Studio One and how it handles cases like this, you will be buffed. Because that is easy to understand and does not need any external tools that cost as much as the DAW software itself and that for things that should be mandatory for a DAW like Cubase.

The only thing you will achieve with posting links like this is, that Steinberg will start to point at these solutions and telling us, if you want that then go this route… Thank you, no freakin way, to spend my free and lifetime with external software, that needs a huge amount of a learning curve and costs a fortune.

Some nice features and good work. But still there is a lot of things only steinberg can fix. For example doing a “section-add”, like what you can do if you your mouse is pointing on the right window with keyboard modifiers. And VCA, foilders, link and group channel. Neither can you do a split. For example have 8 bus locked faders and 8 banked for others. You can maybe fix that but for a maximum of total 24 audio channels, including fx, groups etc.

I should have been more clear about how to set the flag for nrpn. This article explains what do and why.

Also, from the manual: the remote contol editor works for “supported devices” (??). I’m pretty shure it does not work when you are using the generic remote instead.

True, there is a big learning curve to get the generic remote to work, and true there is no usable documentation from steinberg on the feature, and the plugincontrol implementation is unusable. I have been asking for a better system myself since ages on this forum. What I am trying to show you is the workarounds. I am just trying to help, thats all.