Understanding Control Room

Hi guys,

Help me understand the control room features.
I’m using a 2in / 4out audio interface, a pair of nearfield monitors and an audiophile headphone.
How would be the best setup to use the control room properly? (Pls don’t tell me to read ur manual coz I’ve done it)
I don’t have a studio/separate rooms for recordings but I would like to learn it anyway so I can start to improve my recording techniques.

Thank you.

You’ll have to ask more specific questions. We’ve no idea of your needs.
Generally though I’d say 1 In for mic 1 in for instrument, 1 stereo out (2 outs) for your monitors and the remaining 2 outs (stereo config) for artist cue.

Let me say I create some grooves and I want to record my vocal. How should I setup it ?(vocalist having the beats in his headphones).
When I record my vocal should I also hear it in my headphones or should listen just the beats and sing along it?
basic questions for who doesn’t know nothing about recordings.

thank you

It’s a good, basic question. I hope someone provides a simple basic answer. It might depend on your sound card … out of my expertise. My RME HDSPe AIO can let me set up loop back, with very low latency. But others will have better general answers, I hope.

I’m using Focusrite Scarlet 2i4
2in/4out

The Control Room is an abstract way of managing your monitoring so that you don’t have to change target output connections on your hardware, nor on individual channels or sends to change between speakers, phone or cue mixes.

For your Focusrite, I would suggest that the connection arrangement would be:
a) Cubase Input channels:
_ a) Mic --> In 01, named as ‘Vocal’.
_ b) Guitar --> In 02, as ‘Guitar’.
_ Note that you can use the same physical inputs for multiple Input channels, which means that you could also have:
_ c) Stereo mic pair --> In 1 + 2, named as ‘Acoustic’.

These can be set up differently in each Cubase Input channel, such as having filters, are then possible sources for Audio channels, but you have to make sure you correctly set the LINE/INST switch on the Focusrite for the Input channel currently being recorded.

b) Cubase Output channels are left not connected.

c) Control Room:
_ a) LINE OUTPUT 1 + 2 --> Speakers, , as ‘Speakers’, using the BALANCED or UNBALANCED connections as required.
_ b) LINE OUTPUT 3 + 4 --> Headphones, as ‘Phones’, but make sure the HEADPHONE SOURCE is set to ‘3+4’ on the Focusrite.

This enables you to use the Control Room to switch between the Phone and Speakers, but also allows having different plugins for each, such as having a room compensation plugin, such as IK Multimedia’s ARC, inserted into the speaker feed, or different EQ settings for each.


You do not have enough output channels on the Focusrite to provide any cue/foldback feeds. If you did, Control Room would allow you to put a reverb plugin (though advisably not too CPU-intensive) on the vocalist cue mix, while keeping what is recorded reverb-free.

It’s difficult gauging the level of comprehension of a given user when asking a question. I don’t usually go into great detail unless necessary. Well done Patanjali :wink:

Regarding limited output channels however, since the OP is recording himself, the Line Outs 3 + 4 can double as Cue Mix Phone outs. Setup both a Phones out (am I to assume the Focusrite has no phones out?) and an Artist Cue. When recording, enable the outs in the control room for the cue, and when mixing, disable these and activate the outs for the phones.
This way a separate cue mix can be had on the Cue phones when recording if necessary without upsetting the main mix.

FWIW: Regarding plugins for the phones, Beyerdynamic has a freebie plugin for phones which simulates different listening environments.

Thank you everyone who left a bit their knowledge here.
I really appreciate it.

I will have weekend off I will dive into control room and also trying to do some recording. hope I can manager do it properly and efficiently.

Special Thank you Patanjali & Brihar

Thanks BriHar.

The phone output is selected to come from LINE OUTPUTS 1+2 or 3+4, which is why I recommended leaving it set to 3+4 if the speakers are on 1+2.

I forgot that multiple Cubase Control Room outputs can go to the same hardware outs.

However, there is no need to do any of that, as the phones can be set in Control Room to monitor the main mix or any of the cue mixes, so the cue mixes just need to be created, but without any connection to hardware outputs, just like the main outs. During tracking, the Control Room phones select a cue mix, and during mixing, they select the main mix.

I remember trying that plugin a couple of years ago, as I was thinking of making surround mixes for ear/headphones. It was a horrendous CPU hog. Hopefully, it is more frugal now!

When you’re right, your right. :wink:

I’ve not noticed it being excessively power hungry, then I’ve not used it in a surround setup. I don’t use it that much anyway, and when, then usually after mixing I might pop it in the output channel temporarily. The real test of course is listening in real environments as always.

It’s an evolutionary thing.

I’d already posted a different comment when I thought some more about what you’d written, and it suddenly dawned on me that the solution was simpler, and something that SB had obviously (hindsight is a wonderful thing!) allowed for, so I changed it.


As for the Beyerdynamic plugin, I might check it out again, as I am still interested in doing dedicated ear/headphone mixes, as many people spend so much time of their day listening to music through them, that it may be a worthwhile dedicated target audience.

When using earphones, I always use one of the surround modes on the phone, just so I don’t get that ‘middle-of-the-head’ sound, but more a bit in front of me.

There is an excellent multi-part video series on the Control Room on YouTube. It is called:

“Demystifying The Control Room In Cubase”

It was captured in an earlier version of Cubase, so the screens look different, but the functionality is still the same.

Good luck.