Foxtex VM200: control Sonar w/ Universal Cntrl Surface plug

Discussion in 'Mixing & Song Critique' started by jm56, Feb 18, 2005.

  1. jm56

    jm56 Active Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lansing, MI
    02.17.05 VM200 How to

    I am using the Universal Control Surface (UCS) plug-in to control Sonar with a Fostex VM200.


    (((This group discusses the development of the "UCS", a universal control
    surface being developed by Marc(mbncp). The UCS is an advanced full
    duplex control surface for use with Cakewalk Sonar. )))

    NOTE: Only ONE preset is available. This is the UCS_beta3.ini file.
    Backup this file before changing.

    FOR MACROS ONLY: rename the UCS_beta3.ini file
    Rename the macros only UCS_beta3.ini file to UCS_beta3.ini

    The UCS is also a MACRO editor / player: NOT a recorder.
    However, lottsa stuff can be controlled by hot-keys, and by assigning a MIDI controller to a Macro.

    UCS Help 1003d WordPad format.doc for Sonar parameters: TransportTime, TransportState,...
    Command Actions for Sonar 3 PE.txt, Command Actions for Sonar 4 PE.txt for menu items,...
    And: review the INI and other docs for examples.


    The included example Sonar project file has 32 audio tracks and 16 buses.
    More of each can be added. Including Midi tracks.

    Note::: This setup works with existing projects.
    32 tracks, 16 buses are NOT required to use the included
    vm200 INI configuration.

    A macro can be added in the ini to switch Bus Banks if more that 16 buses.
    And the UCS dialog can be used to switch banks.

    Note: if there are not a matching number of tracks/buses, switching banks will result in the VM200's fader 16 controlling the last track/bus.

    Sometimes Bus16 does not respond. This is intermittent.

    During testing (changing stuff a lot) Sonar sometimes lost the midi in port. Do not know why.

    If this happens, enable the midi port connected to the VM200.
    Then Click Options | Control Surfaces, double click UCS and select the proper MIDI port.


    The included INI file is configured to control:

    Sonar Tracks: (in VM200 channel mode)

    Send 1 volume (in VM200 effect 1 mode)
    Send 2 volume (in VM200 effect 2 mode)

    Sonar Buses: (in VM200 channel mode)

    Send 1 volume (in VM200 effect 1 mode)
    Send 2 volume (in VM200 effect 2 mode)

    Fostex Master (red) Fader in channel mode
    Sonar Master Volume

    Fostex Master (red) fader when in various modes
    (not enabled/assigned in current INI file)
    Aux1 Master Volume
    Aux2 Master Volume
    Aux3 Master Volume
    Aux4 Master Volume
    Effect1 Master Volume
    Effect2 Master Volume

    Fostex Master Channel ON button switches between the track and bus panes.

    NOT enabled in this ini:

    Channels 17- 20 do work. But the effects sends are confusing:
    Channels 17-18 Effect1 send does not work
    Channels 19-20 Effect2 send does not work

    The faders/pan controls/Chan On/Off could be configured to do other stuff: EQ maybe. I have not attempted this.

    MACROS: current macros in INI file

    Shift + Windows + U
    Open the UCS dialog, load default ini file

    Shift + Windows + i
    load default ini file

    Shift + Windows + Left Arrow
    Move Track Bank left

    Shift + Windows + Right Arrow
    Move Track Bank right

    Shift + Windows + Up Arrow
    Control Tracks

    Shift + Windows + Down Arrow
    Control Buses

    Shift + Windows + i
    Insert new audio track
    Then: Display Name, Inputs, and Outputs dialogs
    Set input monitoring on
    Arm for recording

    Shift + Windows + d
    insert new MIDI track
    Then: Display Name, Channel, Outputs, Bank, and Patch dialogs
    Arm for recording



    This will create these folders:
    And copy all the files to these folders

    VM200 setup:

    Set Transmit and Receive to Channel 16
    Set Control change RX and TX to ON
    Set System EX RX and TX to ON
    Set Program Change to Table 02

    Current Scene Status
    Set Add Aux to ON
    Set smoothing to level 1
    Set AUX PAIR to OFF

    Set all Channel On/Off buttons to OFF

    Save this Scene.
    (If ya want, do a bulk dump to a MIDI library program for quick reset.)


    UCS setup:

    Double click the "Register.bat" file in the c:\AudioCommon\UCS folder.
    (Do this only once.)

    Note: The C:\AudioCommon folder is where I install programs and shared content I want quick access to without having to explore to an annoyingly buried folder.
    E.G., C:\Program Files\Cakewalk\Sonar4\shared content\templates\,....

    Also: I have installed programs such as Sonar1,2,3,4 to folders in the C: folder: i.e., C:\Sonar1, C:\Sonar2, etc.,...

    Open Sonar
    Load the "32 channels 16 buses.cwp" file in the c:\AudioCommon\UCS folder.

    Click: Options | Control Surfaces
    Add the UCS
    choose MIDI In / Out ports connected to the VM200
    click OK to exit dialogs

    Press Shift + Windows + U
    To open the UCS dialog, and load default ini file.
    (Only 1 preset at this time.)

    (If this does not work:
    Click Tools | UCS
    Click Edit
    Click File | Save and Update
    Click X to close editor.)

    Test controls.

    SaveAs to use with new project.

    This setup works with existing projects. But, you may have to
    Press Shift + Windows + U
    To open the UCS dialog, and load default ini file.


    Reference: VM200's manual, page 212, for Midi messages sent by the VM200.

    message 32 not used
    messages 9 - 104 not used

    The VM200 does NOT send Fostex System Exclusive messages as stated on page 217.


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