Whats the point of still using Instrument Racks?

If instrument tracks now support adding multiple different midi channels/vsts then what’s the point of still using instrument racks?

Are there still pros and cons of using one over the other or will racks be faded out eventually?

i never use it, i am curiouse too!

i only ever use instrument tracks now too. maybe historical reasons? i don’t know. another example of redundancy in cubase that is very confusing to newcomers.

Short answer I think would be to maintain compatibility with older Cubase versions. Unless some utility could be devised to automatically transform rack vsts into tracks, it would be a huge pain and there would be an outcry. For me, being able to load projects from several versions and years back is critically important.

one thing about instruments tracks is that if you accidentally delete the track that’s holding the VSTi you’ve lost your sound/VSTi!.. that doesn’t happen with instruments racks.

can’t recall from memory-- are you saying undo following a track deletion doesn’t bring up the instrument in the state it was in?

Hmm… I guess the point is to be able to use multitimbral VSTi’s? Like Superior Drummer… and put the kick, the snare, the hihats and such on their own mixconsole tracks! I haven’t used Cubase Pro 8 much, but in earlier versions, this was the only way to do this!

Midi sends.

As Johnny says, multitimbral VSTis. If you want 16 instruments (sounds) from Kontakt you have to load 16 instances if you’re using Instrument Tracks, one per track; with a rack, you can send all 16 tracks to one single instance.

Personally I never use Instrument Tracks as I find them too inflexible, but they are easier to set up and that’s why they were introduced – for newcomers.

Multi timbral is easily achieved with instrument tracks. Add one instrument track with Kontakt, load up 16 different sound each on different midi channels….

But, unless I’m missing something, you won’t have separate audio outputs.

Sure… you can use the method vudoo describes… but I believe your VSTi must have a way to mix internally. You get only stereo out from an Instrument Track, so to mix for example drums, piano and organ would be difficult via Mixconsole. Kontakt have 16 outputs so you get 16 channels in Mixconsole. Superior Drummer have 32 i believe. Even Model-E from Steinberg have 16 outputs. To be able to mix all those outputs, with VST effects and independent channelcontrols, individually you have to use Instrument Racks.

Isn’t one reason for using the Instrument Rack still, to make it way easier to play the MIDI track content associated with an instrument track to alternate instruments? I.e. without copying MIDI data to other tracks just to try a different instrument sound.

An instrument track is “hard”-routed to it’s MIDI track? This would make it cumbersome to quickly try different instruments. If you have a multi-timbre instrument track it’s even worse, if you want to try a few different instruments for an alternate sound, e.g. on one of the sub-tracks.

The rack can have 10 different instruments loaded (example) and all you have to do is change the output routing to any of those instrument. It’s also easier to picture, at least in my head, but then again I’ve used MIDI since inception. If I am totally wrong on this, please let me know so I can slowly alter my ways. :slight_smile:

no - instrument tracks can have multi outputs now - how has everyone missed that? (and similarly, multiple separate midi tracks can be routed to a single instrument track VSTi.)

it really seems to be down to the midi sends.

Because we only use them when we absolutely have to ?

This is incorrect. Instrument tracks have multi ins and out. (as lukasbrooklyn pointed out)

i think the fact that Steinberg made the Instrument rack window SO DAMN WIDE taking up so much screen real estate since C7 without a means to make it smaller was on purpose to ween people off from using it. its quite ususable now to have it permanently on the screen in a corner somewhere because of its huge size. And thats probably the way they want it.

personally i think its a dog act to have done that.

Looks like I did miss this then (was that added with C8?) … most likely because I’ve avoided Instrument Tracks since they were introduced :laughing:. Must investigate more.

with track instrument its possible to save track presets… so its possible recall all sounds midi/audio routing and settings for its audio track settings.

but i dont like the mess the new track instrument brings on the instrument list (in the inspector when choosing loaded VSTi) in large count VSTi projects, also the naming that changes by track instrument name

If you prefer to use instrument tracks, forget about using the Save Selected/Load Selected channels in the mix console.

Save Selected/Load Selected does not work with Instrument tracks.