Understanding VST panels and presets

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    I’d like to understand how are VST presets created / handled when working together with a VST version of a Ctrlr panel.

    Basically, for the developer:
    – open DAW and load Ctrlr plugin 32 or 64 .dll in DAW
    – open panel in the Ctrlr plugin
    – export restricted instance to create the plugin

    Then, open the VST panel plugin in DAW
    Then what??? How are presets created, saved? What about FXP, FXB formats?
    Do we need to code this or is this handled by the compiled plugin?
    Where are those files stored?


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    Besides to know how to make VST presets, I’d also like to have confirmations about the way to produce VST’s

    1. VST index number: can it start at any value OR do we need to start them at 1 till 64?
    2. seems that the limit is 64 but that one can use an .overrides file to go above that number. Is the parameter ctrlrMaxExportedVstParameters indeed defining that maximum limit?
    3. what is happening to modulators where “Export parameter to VST host” is set to Don’t export? I suppose that the modulator is appearing but that using it doesn’t create any action. Right?
    4. can the user open several times the same VST of a panel and make that working fine? Within Ctrlr it doesn’t work to have same or similar panels opened at the same time. I mean in the DAW will the VST indexes of the different instances not mixed each other?
    5. to create a 32 bits VST version do I need a 32 bit DAW? to create a 64 bits VST version do I need a 64 bit DAW? I mean, is it possible to create 32 and 64 bits from the same DAW?
    6. related question… To create an AU, do I need a DAW running on a Mac?

    At the moment, I converted one of my panel and pressing a button doesn’t do anything. I checked all VST indexes in the panel and their are all between 2452 and 2600. So indeed, if Ctrlr is looking for 1 to 64 they will not be found.

    I made a simple test panel with one button displaying a welcome message. Button as index 1. That one works fine.

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    OK. I have now done some further tests with my simple panel:

    • I have one button triggering a lua script and a classic rotary modulator
    • using VSTindex 2500 and 2600 for those is OK. The plugin works fine
    • launching 2 parallel instances is OK. There are no interference. However this is a very simple panel…

    So still don’t know why the Lua scripts on my main panel are not working. In that one I have PanelLoaded, ReadStateData and isPanelReady(). Will investigate this further.

    Still would like replies from other Ctrlr users 🙂

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    So I continued the investigation…
    Found the issue then found different posts on the forum and adding the following info.

    I discovered that we should not have getProgramState() in the condition in the isPanelReady function.
    Removing that and thus only using
    if panel:getBootstrapState() == false and bPanelLoaded == true then
    solves the issue. VSTs are working fine.

    I can have 3 instances of the same panel at once. Each with a different patch.
    Saving the project then loading it back gives no issue.

    Before exporting as DLL, I have also adjusted my preferences to have “Max exported VST parameters” set to 5000
    At the moment (I will do more thorough tests) all parameters seem to work.
    Not sure if the .overrides file is needed. This was maybe related to older Ctrlr versions than 5.3.201.

    I will search further in the forum about the meaning of getProgramState().
    All the startup phase of a panel is still a bit cryptic even if I understand it more and more.

    And about VST, still would be interested to know how to make presets (I suppose fxp files) appearing in the DAW.

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    • ★★

    Hi Goodweather,

    I think a panel loaded into the Ctrlr VST has a limit of 64 (0-63) values, but when exported as VST instance there is no limit or the number is very high.

    I think you have to use a 32 bit DAW to export a 32bit VST.

    I also believe VST indexes start at 0.

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