So after racking my brains I’ve come up with a way that you can get VCA style grouping on cubase 6 (and some previous versions too).
It’s not as easy to use/set up as real VCA grouping, but has pretty much all the functionality of it.
Firstly download the template file from here …
Then copy the template file to here …
C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Steinberg\Cubase 6_64\Project Templates\
(depending on what version of cubase you are using the numbers after cubase might be diferant )
Ok so here’s how to use the template. (This is a relatively simple template just so you can see how it’s done, It uses 4 tracks 2 VCA groups and a master VCA Group, but can extend to how ever many sub VCA groups you like.)
Working backwards, I have the master VCA fader this controls the volume of the two VCA groups, how I have done this is by creating, what I’ve called in the template, "Group Pre"s what my audio will run through. These pre-group groups are essentially a fader before the actual fader. The pre-groups run into the real buss groups (One pre-group per VCA group and one buss for each group-pre). The master VCA fader is linked on the mixer to the pre-group faders allowing you to control the volume of multiple group tracks before the aux send of that track (which will come off the buss group), unlike with a normal group set up. You write enable the master VCA and the pre-groups, and any automation done with the master VCA will imprint to the pre-groups. You now have you master VCA acting like one and controlling all the other VCA groups volumes via automation pre aux send.
It’s a similar set up for your individual tracks running into the VCA groups, except you have to make a group for each individual track and route each one through the group, and use the original track like we did with the pre-groups, and the group fader for each track will be your normal channel fader. You link your VCA group fader with all the cosponsoring audio tracks via the mixer and can automate it the same as mentioned before by enabling write on all the linked tracks (you have to do it one by one) and route each audio track’s cosponsoring group fader into the pre-group for the VCA group you want to send it to.
So we have our audio tracks, routed into an individual groups for each one, then them group tracks will be routed into the relevant pre-group and the pre group are routed into a buss group for each one and they will be your VCA groups’ outputs’ (Ignore the pre-master stereo out, that’s just like a master fader before the actual master fader that I’ve routed the buss groups into, you don’t have to do that, that’s personal preference). The VCA master controls the pre-groups as if it was controlling all the VCA group faders and they in turn control what ever initial audio track volumes you set it up to in this case track 1+2 for VCA group 1 and 3+4 for VCA group 2
When using inserts you would put them on the pre-groups or pre-mix channels but when using sends you would send from the individual mixer audio groups or the buss groups. This is so you get your pre send fading, but aren’t changing the input gain of your channel’s insert plugins. If you look at it as if you have one big channel comprising of 2 faders, one that can be automated as a group before the sends in a group, and one individually. That’s pretty much what it is. Just ignore the inserts on the groups and only ever put them on the pre’s, and the sends are put on the groups and it’ll act like a normal channel with VCA control.
Just don’t try and move any track in your project that’s in a group after it’s been grouped without double clicking it first or you’ll move everything in the group. You can group items that aren’t next to each other by using “Ctrl+left click” on each channel in the mixer window. If you move one whilst they are grouped, they all move unless you double click.
I hope I’ve covered everything and it all makes sense. It’s a bit tricky to explain, hence the template for you to inspect. I’m sure there’s a few more incidentals I’ve not discovered yet as I only just made this an hour ago and haven’t tested it too much, just enough to know it works at the core.
I’ve put inserts on the tracks that you would put them on, I’ve put sends on the tracks that you would put your sends on so you can see exactly what I was trying to explain, and have put record enable on ready for you to automate the master VCA fader to see it working (for VCA groups just write enable all the tracks that highlight when you click on the corisponding VCA track)
Any questions, or if you don’t understand something just ask and I’ll do my best.