Would like a recommendation for a control surface



So, I have never really been into control surfaces, but I am at the point where I am considering one. I think. I have no idea what’s out there and available currently.

What I would like to do, is have something in front of me which will allow me to mute groups of MIDI tracks. If I can tie MIDI tracks directly to the controller - great, if not, then muting the Instr. Tracks would work just as well. Not looking for fader usage (tho, I assume most controllers come with faders?) - at this point, I am just looking to mute sections. Don’t need transport functions necessarily, but if they are available, that might be a bonus.

Can anyone recommend something?

Thanks in advance.

What’s your budget?

If that’s all you want to do, I’d save the money and set up PLE presets to do it.

Maybe Steinberg’s CMC Controllers are what you’re looking for. Being separate modules, you can buy only the one you need. I don’t own one, but I think they are small and convenient. The downside is that you can use them only in Steinberg’s products.

I work with different DAW so I bought an Euphonix (now Avid) MC Control some time ago. Since, I bought an iPad with some control apps (Cubase IC Pro, Neyrinck V-Control and an Ableton Live Controller). It’s way cheaper than any hardware control surface and you can use it for many many different things.

I suggest the Korg nanokontroller which is cheap and small. Works very nicely. Has 9 channels. I have version one it’s 2 years old and it continues to work. I’ve seen it for $25 or less on ebay, but the newer one is still pretty cheap. (Also, vers. 2 apparently has Mackie mode, (but 8 channels) so you can use it with the Remote Control editor in Cubase)

It will do what you asked for in the OP.

Thanks for the responses.

I will look into Steinberg’s CMC Controllers - I don’t care if I can only use it w/SB products. All I would need this for is Cubase.

As a professional working composer, I have no budget… :laughing: I dunno, I don’t have a $ figure in mind… willing to spend some money…

Hi - could you explain what PLE presets are?

The Korg nanokontroller might be an option, but with only 9 channels, that may not work. It may be ok as I get started with controllers, but I don’t want to pigdeon-hole myself.

Any others?

Thanks! :slight_smile:

PLE - Project Logical Editor?

I had a Houston (hideous), Mackie Control (excellent) and also a Behringer BCR2000 (cheap but decent).

Got rid of the houston, swapped for the Mackie. It was excellent, but I never really used it as I made the transition to just using the mouse by then. The BCR2000 was a bargain (under £100) and works really well, once you configure it correctly (which can take a bit of messing). I’d think something like that would do what you want, if you spend a bit of time creating the mapping between it and what you want in Cubase.

Then definitely go with the CMC series. I have all of them and I love them. Couldn’t work without them now.
The only drawback is that they’re wired, so they aren’t good as remote controllers. For that I use an Android tablet with TouchDAW. Incidentally, I could also use my smartphone with the same app (and no, you don’t need to buy a second license for TouchDAW), and sometimes I do that.

BTW, the Korg Nanocontrollers are built like toys. Some of the people I work with told me that they just fell apart after a few months of daily use. Also, nothing gives you the kind of integration with Cubase CMC modules do.

The korg device I have is indeed built like a toy, but it has survived for something like three years here. I don’t take it anywhere, it just sits on my desk. If it’s a device to be used only for its mute and solo buttons only then it is extremely cheap. Also, you do get 4 banks of 9 using the scene button.

I bought this keyboard [below] earlier this summer.

It’s perfectly integrated with Cubase, Nuendo & Reason with other DAWs coming along.

It also has a motorized fader, for those who like that option, as many do.


and nectar also do a module P1 as well

Project Logical Editor presets. if you set everything up right, you can do what you want with them. :yfc:

Ok, gotcha.

The PLE does not seem to have Instr Tracks, however. :astonished:

Will start another thread…

No, but it does filter by track name, etc… . :wink:

I have an AVID Artist Control!

It seems to be very well integrated with Cubase! It communicates via an Ethernet based protocol called EuCon that provide some advantages over MIDI or USB, but also has its own challenges!

Since you want to know more about what is available…you owe it to yourself to check out these control surfaces! They are expensive, but the level of integration with other DAW’s, as well as Cubase / Nuendo offer so much more flexibility in my opinion!

Being able to control third party plug-ins within Cubase is also possible with these control surfaces… something you may consider when the need arises! They can also communicate via Mackie Control or HUI protocols as well!


+1 for the Avid Artist.

I am very impressed with how well it integrates with C6, although I haven’t hooked it up to C7 or 7.5 yet. It’s extremely well- featured.
Downside: The price! I have no budget either! Mine just landed on the mat and I didn’t have to pay for it :smiley:

+1 Avid Artist

I have Artist Transport and Artist Mix and I could´t be happier. The Mix integrates with Cubase really nice and Transport let me control transport functions, events fade ins, fade outs, hotkeys… Love the two units.


I’m with you, guys :laughing:

Makes the worklow easy and funny - no limitation due to the configurable touchscreen and the programmable buttons.

True, it’s expensive :exclamation:
But, hey - that’s an investment. :wink:


I use the Icon Qcon Pro control surface. It has all of the functionality of the Mackie but is half the price. I have owned mine (I have an extension as well) for well over a year. It integrates deeply with Cubase and controls eq, plugins, through the LCD display. More details here:


There is a good review of it here:


$1500.00 :open_mouth: And it only has four faders! :open_mouth: :open_mouth: