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Blue Cat's Remote Control User Manual
Blue Cat's Remote Control User Manual
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Blue Cat's Remote Control - virtual MIDI Control Surface (VST, AU, VST3, AAX)
"The Virtual Control Surface for your Virtual Studio"
MacOSUniversal BinaryWindows Vista or newerWindows x64 (64-bit)VSTVST3AAX64-bit AAXAudio Unit

Introduction

Blue Cat's Remote Control is a plug-in and application which lets you control and monitor in real time several MIDI controllable plug-ins or devices from a single customizable user interface.

The user interface of your favorite plug-in is not satisfying? Your favorite hardware device is too complicated to control? Your project contains hundreds of plug-ins and you would like to control them all from a single user interface? You need undo/redo for all your modifications? You would like to instantly recall all settings of your favorite MIDI devices from your DAW projects? This product was designed for you!

With Blue Cat's Remote Control, you can choose any type of control (switches, faders, joysticks, knobs) or meter, assign a MIDI channel and CC number to each control, customize its response curve. You can as well choose a built-in skin that suits your needs for every instance of the plug-in, or create your own (see the Skins section): this is the best way to create your own user interface to control your entire Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) and external hardware the way you have chosen.

Since the Remote Control can also be controlled via MIDI, you can also use it to remap and transform MIDI messages, from one MIDI CC to another, with different response curves or MIDI channels.

Read our Remote Control Tutorials and see this plug-in in action!

Blue Cat's Remote Control - Monitor the evolution of MIDI values over time using the curves skins Blue Cat's Remote Control - Use up to 64 MIDI controls in a single instance Blue Cat's Remote Control - virtual MIDI Control Surface (VST, AU, VST3, AAX)

Typical applications: MIDI remote control, MIDI CC mapping, MIDI CC values monitoring, transform automation to MIDI and MIDI to automation, custom user interface.

System Requirements

MacOS

  • An Intel or Apple Silicon processor.
  • Mac OS 10.9 or newer.
  • For the plug-in, any VST / Audio Unit / AAX compatible application (64-bit) .
  • For the standalone application, a Core Audio compatible audio interface.

Windows

  • An SSE2-enabled processor (Pentium 4 or newer).
  • Microsoft Windows Vista, Windows 7, 8 or 10.
  • For the plug-in, any VST / AAX compatible host software (32 or 64 bit).
  • For the standalone application, an ASIO, MME or WASAPI compatible audio interface (ASIO recommended).

For more information about supported platforms, see our Knowledge Base.

Demo Limitations:

  • Limited number of instances of the plug-in per session.
  • The application or the plug-in is regularly bypassed for a few milliseconds.

Installation

The standalone version does not require any host application and can be run without requiring any third party application.

The plug-ins versions cannot be run standalone: they require a host application (see the System Requirements chapter for more information). Depending on which host application you use, you might need to install the plug-ins in different locations.

Before installing one of the plug-in versions, you should close all your host applications.

Windows

Install

All versions of the plug-in provide an installation program. Follow the steps of the wizard to install the software on your machine. During the installation you will be asked where you want the software to be installed. For the VST version, you should install the plug-in inside the VST plug-ins folder used by your host application(s). The default path set in the installer should work for most applications, but you should check your host software documentation to know where it looks for VST plug-ins. For other plug-in types, you should just use the standard path.

Some applications will not automatically rescan the new plug-ins, so you might have to force a refresh of the plug-ins list.

Upgrade

When a new version of the software is released, just launch the new installer: it will update the current installation.

Uninstall

To uninstall the software, simply launch the "Uninstall" program that is available in the start menu or in the configuration panel. It will take care of removing all files from your computer.

Mac

Install

On Mac the plug-ins are available as drive images with an installer. After download, double click on the dmg file to open it. You can then double click on the installer (.pkg file) to install the package.

Note for Mac OS 10.15 Catalina or newer: you may have to right click on the installer and select "Open" instead of double clicking on the file to launch the installation if your computer is not connected to the Internet.

Upgrade

When a new version of the software is released, just launch the new installer: it will update the current installation.

Uninstall

To uninstall the software, simply remove the component(s) from their install location (move them to the trash):

  • Standalone applications are installed in the /Applications folder
  • AAX plug-ins are installed in the /Library/Application Support/Avid/Audio/Plug-Ins/ folder
  • Audio Units (AU) are installed in the /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/Components/ folder
  • RTAS Plug-ins are installed in the /Library/Application Support/Digidesign/Plug-Ins/ folder
  • VST plug-ins are installed in the /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/VST folder
  • VST3 plug-ins are installed in the /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/VST3 folder

If you want to completely remove all settings and configuration files, you can also remove these additional directories that may have been created on your computer:

  • ~/Library/Preferences/Blue Cat Audio/[Plug-in name and TYPE], where TYPE is VST, AU, RTAS or AAX: global preferences.
  • ~/Library/Preferences/Blue Cat Audio/[Plug-in name]: license information
  • ~/Documents/Blue Cat Audio/[Plug-in name]: user data, such as presets, additional skins and user-created plug-in data.

Please be aware that these directories may contain user data that you have created. Remove these directories only if you do not want to reuse this data later.

First Launch

Standalone Application

Once the application has been installed, simply double click on its icon to launch it. On Mac, the application will be located in the 'Applications' folder if using the default install location. On Windows, you will find it in the start menu.

The first time you launch the application, it will ask you if you want to configure the audio interface:

It is recommended to configure the audio interface before using the application, but you can still do it later by clicking on the "Edit/Audio Setup" menu. This opens the Audio/MIDI Preferences window reproduced below:

If the default setup displayed in the panel does not correspond to your needs, you can do the following:

  • Choose the appropriate I/O configuration, if available.
  • On Windows, choose the type of audio driver (ASIO is recommended. If you do not have an ASIO driver, we recommend using the ASIO4All driver).
  • Choose the driver to use for audio input and audio output, if available (with ASIO, you can only choose a single driver for both).
  • Select the sample rate and buffer size. Increasing the size of the buffer uses less CPU but adds latency.
  • Select the audio inputs and outputs to use with the software.
  • You can also set the tempo and time signature if relevant.
  • Click on "Tap Tempo Setup" if you want to tap tempo with a MIDI controller.

Changes are applied to the application in real time and saved when closing the preferences window. You can see the status of the audio engine at the bottom of the window, as well as the estimated i/o latency (it depends on the sample rate, buffer settings and selected audio interface(s).

If the status of the engine is 'NOT Running', you may need to change the settings: try to increase the buffer size, change the sample rate (it might not be supported by the interface) or select another audio interface.

The MIDI In and MIDI Out panes let you select the MIDI devices to be used as input and ouput. You can either use them all, none, or select from a list:

Once the this has been setup, you can close the window and start using the application.

Standalone Application: Network Server

It is also possible to use the applications as a "slave" of another application that sends audio and MIDI with the Connector plug-in locally or over the network. To do this you should select the "Network Audio" driver type and "Connector Slave" driver.

Click on the button with 3 dots at the right of the driver name to access the connection settings (see the Connector Manual for more details):

Note: in this mode, the application will not process audio unless some data is sent to it by an instance of the connector plug-in loaded into an active audio application.

Audio Plug-Ins

Blue Cat Audio plug-ins cannot be run standalone, they require a host application (see the System Requirements chapter for more information). Some host applications will require you to scan the plug-ins before they are available in the application.

If the plug-in is not available in the application, please check that it has been installed in the appropriate directory (with no host application running), and that the host application has scanned it.

Using Blue Cat's Remote Control

The User Interface

Note: The main toolbar, menus and basic features available with all our plug-ins are detailed in the Blue Cat Audio Plug-ins Basics section.

Skins

The plug-in lets you choose between several skins, to get the most appropriate user interface for your needs. Yuo can choose your skin from the main plug-in menu (you can also browse the presets, they will load different skins too):

Controls

Some of the built-in skins let you control the values of the parameters with knobs and sliders:

It enables you to generate MIDI CC messages or automation curves corresponding to the movements of the knobs, just like a real control surface.

A variant of such controls is the "joystick" skin, which lets you control two parameters at a time with the mouse for each joystick.:

Meters

Some other skins let you also monitor the values of parameters - when used with our analysis tools, you can display the value of the output parameters of the analysis plug-ins in the remote control:

Curves

And some other skins let you monitor the evolution of parameters over time thanks to several graphs:

Assigning MIDI & Automation

There are several ways to change the MIDI assignments of each control. The first one is to enable direct control settings display in the toolbar:

The green arrows lets you change the MIDI input assignement of the control (if you want to control it via MIDI), whereas the red arrow opens up a menu to configure the MIDI output of the control (to send messages to another plug-in or device). All options offered for MIDI I/O are described later in this manual.

All skins also include a MIDI Settings pane that let you modify all the basic MIDI settings for the current instance on a single screen:

The settings you have access to depend on the skin you have chosen: it will let you choose MIDI output properties for controls like knobs and sliders, and the MIDI input properties for meters and curves.

For more MIDI settings (such as response curve), you can also use the current preset settings pane in the main menu.

Renaming Controls

Once you have chosen the right skin for your purposes, you can also rename the controls on the skin: click on the control name (by default C 1, C 2 etc.). A popup window appears and lets you enter a new name for the control:

Your Remote Control is now completely customized for your needs!

Note: renaming the controls does not affect the names displayed in the DAW - they will still be shown as C1, C2 etc.

The various elements of the user interface (knobs, sliders, buttons...) are simple and intuitive to operate, but more information about how to interact with them is available in the "Plug-ins Basics" chapter of this manual.

Operation

Principle

The Remote Control plugin is able to receive and emit MIDI CC (Control Change) messages as well as automation messages (if your host application supports it):

You can thus either interact with the plugin's user interface or with an external MIDI controller to move the knobs and meters offered by the various skins. This leads to 3 types of applications:

  • Control MIDI devices or plugins with the custom user interface of the Remote Control.
  • Monitor MIDI or automation events.
  • Use the plugin as a MIDI or automation mapper.

These scenarios are detailed in the next paragraph.

Typical Applications

Control MIDI devices or plugins with the custom user interface of the Remote Control

In order to send MIDI CC messages with the Blue Cat's Remote Control plugin, you should first choose a skin that offers controls rather than meters. Follow these steps to setup the plugin to send MIDI CC events:

  1. Insert the plugin on an audio track.
  2. Connect the plugin MIDI output (usually with an additional MIDI track).
  3. Setup the Output MIDI CC channel and number (manually or with MIDI learn) for each control you want to use, either in the plugin user interface or in the preset settings panel. Every time you move a control on the user interface of the plugin, a MIDI CC message will be sent according to the channel and CC number you have chosen.

In this configuration, you can also create presets in the Remote Control that store parameters values for the MIDI controled device, and these values will be recalled and sent to the device when the preset is loaded. It is a good wait to get instant session recall right within your DAW.

It is also possible to record automation for the remote control parameters. When automation is replayed, the Remote Control plug-in will send corresponding MIDI messages to the MIDI controlled device.

Monitor MIDI or automation events

In order to monitor MIDI CC values with the Blue Cat's Remote Control plugin, you should first choose a skin that offers meters or curves rather than controls. Follow these steps to setup the plugin to receive MIDI CC events and display the control values:

  1. Insert the plugin on an audio track.
  2. Connect the plugin MIDI input (usually with an additional MIDI track).
  3. Setup the Input MIDI CC channel and number (manually or with MIDI learn) for each control you want to monitor, either in the plugin user interface or in the preset settings panel. Note that you can choose to monitor a value on all channels using 0 as channel value.

You should now be able to see the control values directly on the Remote control user interface!

Use the Remote Control plug-in as a MIDI or automation mapper

The idea here is to use the plugin to convert MIDI CC messages received as input to the output. The plugin lets you change the following properties of the MIDI CC events:

  • MIDI Channel.
  • MIDI CC Number.
  • Values range.
  • Response curve.

For example it is possible to transform MIDI CC messages coming on channel 3 number 64 to messages on channel 1 number 5 with a smaller range and a logarithmic response curve. Another possibility is to transform an input automation curve into MIDI CC messages.

Follow these steps to setup the plugin (the details of the scenario may vary depending on your host application):

  1. Insert the plugin on an audio track.
  2. Connect the plugin MIDI input and output (usually with an additional MIDI track).
  3. Setup the Input and Output MIDI CC channels and numbers (manually or with MIDI learn) for each control you want to use, either in the plugin user interface or in the preset settings panel.
  4. Adjust advanced settings (range and response curve) in the settings panel.

The plugin should now perform the mapping and transformation of incoming events.

Note: if you need more advanced control over MIDI mapping or want to write your own MIDI events transformer, you may want to check out the Plug'n Script plug-in.

Tutorials

Several tutorials for this product are available on our website to learn how to use these virtual control surfaces within your favorite host application:

Blue Cat's Remote Control Tutorials

Standalone Application Basics

Main Features

The standalone application will let you process audio data coming from the inputs of the audio interface and stream it to its output, in real time, without the need for a third party host application. The application also receives MIDI events from all MIDI input interfaces available on the machine, without any particular configuration required.

The core features of the application are the same as the plug-ins versions, except that the application can run on its own.

It is worth noting that user presets are shared between the standalone application and the plug-ins versions, so that presets can be reused between standlone and plug-in sessions.

Application Preferences

The audio/MIDI setup for the application is decribed in details in the first launch chapter.

The configuration window above can be displayed using the Edit/Audio Setup menu item. More information about the various fields can be found in the first launch chapter.

Application Menu

The application menu gives you access to the following commands:

  • Edit/Undo: undo last change.
  • Edit/Redo: redo last undone change.
  • Edit/Audio Setup: open the preferences window.

Keyboard Shortcuts

To speed up operation, several keyboard shortcuts are available in the standalone application:

On Windows

  • CTRL+Z: undo.
  • Shift CTRL+Z: redo.
  • CTRL+P: open the preferences window.
  • ALT+F4: quit the application.

On Mac

  • CMD+Z: undo.
  • Shift CMD+Z: redo.
  • CMD+, or CMD+P: open the preferences window.
  • CMD+Q: quit the application.

Troubleshooting

No Sound

if you cannot hear anything coming out of the software, you need to check the audio configuration: open the preferences window (Edit Menu / Audio Setup command), and check that the audio engine is running. If it is not running, you may need to select another audio interface or change the buffer and sample rate settings. If it is running, you may want to select another audio interface or differnt audio inputs and outputs.

Cracks and Pops

If you can hear unwanted "cracks" and "pops" during the performance, you may be experiencing audio dropouts, because the application is using too much CPU. You can try to increase the buffer size in the preferences window to reduce CPU usage, and close other applications that are currently running.

Blue Cat Audio Plug-Ins Basics

This chapter describes the basic features that are common to all our plug-ins. If you are already familiar with our products, you can skip this part.

User Interface Basics

About Skins

Like all Blue Cat Audio plug-ins, Blue Cat's Remote Control uses a skinnable user interface. It means that the appearance and behavior of the user interface can be entirely customized.

Especially with third party skins, the experience may be quite different from the one offered by the default skins that we provide. However, our plug-ins and our skinning engine have several standard features that will be available whatever your favorite skin.

More information about custom skins can be found in the skins section.

The Main Toolbar

In most skins, an optional toolbar at the top of the user interface gives you access to the main options and settings of the plug-in:

Smooth Bypass

On the left, the power button can be used to smoothly bypass the plug-in.

Presets Area

At the center of the toolbar, you can see the current preset area (the "Default Settings" box). It displays the name of the current preset, with a "*" at the end if it has been modified since loaded.

The arrows on the left and right let you navigate thru the (factory and user) presets available for the plug-in.

Clicking on the preset name opens the presets menu which lets you manage the presets of the plug-in.

Using the knob on the bottom right of this area, you can reduce the opacity of the window, and make it transparent (the actual result may depend on the host application). Additional messages may appear in the area next to this knob, depending on the plug-in.

Some plug-ins may also propose you to manually select the audio I/O inside the plug-in (bottom left of the presets area), regardless of the host configuration. It can be useful for example to save CPU by selecting mono to stereo configurations (instead of full stereo sometimes chosen by default by the host), or add extra channels to manage side chain internally, when the host does not provides any side chain input. Please note that this does not change the number of I/O seen by the host application.

Commands

The icons in the toolbar give you access the to the following commands that are detailed in the next paragraph:

Icon Name Function
Menu Open the main menu
Control Settings Display the controls settings menu (to manage automation and MIDI control, as described here).
Undo Undo
Redo Redo
Manual User Manual
About About
Zoom Scale the user interface (from 70% to 200%).

The Main Menu

The main menu is available from the main toolbar, or if you right click anywhere on the background of the plug-in:

  • Presets: opens the presets menu to manage presets.
  • Preset Skin: opens the skins menu to choose the skin for the current preset and manage alternative skins for the software.
  • Undo/Redo: undo or redo the latest modifications. This includes all changes made to the current preset settings such as MIDI or automation preferences.
  • Presets Settings: open the presets settings window. It lets you change the skin, MIDI and automation settings for the current preset.
  • Global Settings: open the global settings window. It lets you change the skin, MIDI and automation settings that are used by default in all instances of the plug-in (if not overridden by the current preset).
  • User Manual: open this user manual.
  • Check for Updates: opens up our website to let you check if any update for this software is available.
  • Get More Skins: get more skins for this software.
  • Legal Information: browse licensing and misc legal documents.
  • About: displays the “about” dialog box.

Controls

Examples

Here are a few examples of typical controls you will encounter in the user interface of our plug-ins:

slider slider knob button Text control

Interacting with Controls

You can interact with the controls of the plug-in interface either with the mouse or the keyboard.

Setting the keyboard focus on a control (so that it responds to key strokes) may be automatic (when you pass the mouse over it it gets focus) or manual (you have to click on the control to set the focus on it). Note that all host applications behave differently regarding keyboard handling. In some applications you may not be able to use all keys described later in this manual to interact with our plug-ins. It is usually made obvious to you to know the active surfaces of the skin (the places where you can click with the mouse): the mouse cursor usually changes when you can do something on a control. In the default skins delivered with the plug-in, the cursor changes to a small hand or an arrow to tell you when your mouse is over an active control.

Mouse

Various mouse movements will let you interact with the controls:

Mouse Interaction Action
Left Click Acquire focus and start dragging or push (button)
Left Click + Alt Key Set the value to default
Left Double Click Acquire focus and launch the “fine tuning” edit box (except button):
Right Click Set the value to default
Mouse Wheel Increment or decrement the position (focus required)
Mouse Drag Change the control position depending on mouse movement (except button)

Keyboard

All control widgets support the following keys (note that some of them are caught by the host and thus never forwarded to the control. For example in Steinberg Cubase SX you cannot use the arrow keys to control the plug-in):

Keys Common to All Controls

Key Action
Up Arrow Small increment of the position (up or right)
Down Arrow Small increment of the position (down or left)
Left Arrow Same as Down Arrow
Right Arrow Same as Up Arrow
Page Up Large increment of the position (up or right)
Page Down Large decrement of the position (down or left)
+ Small increment of the value of the control
- Small decrement of the value of the control
d Set to default value (same as mouse right click)
e Opens the 'fine tuning' window to precisely set the parameter:
SHIFT When the key is down, the fine tuning mode is on, and you can modify the value with better precision when moving the mouse, the mouse wheel or using the keyboard. Just release the key to get back to the normal mode.

Keys Specific to Buttons

Key Action
Enter Pushes the button

Presets

To get started with the plug-in and discover its capabilities, a couple of factory presets are provided. You can also save your own presets and recall them later for other projects. Our plug-ins propose a full-featured preset manager to let you save, browse, organize and recall its presets.

The Presets Menu

The presets menu can be opened from the main menu or the main toolbar. It displays the list of presets available for the plug-in as well as commands to load, save or organize presets:

  • Factory Presets: shows the list of factory presets delivered with the plug-in.
  • "Folder A" to "User Preset Z": user presets and categories.
  • MIDI Program Change: activate MIDI Program Change support (see below).
  • Load: load preset from file.
  • Save: save current state to last loaded user preset.
  • Save As: save current preset to a file.
  • Copy copy preset to the system clipboard.
  • Paste paste preset from the system clipboard, if available.
  • Save As User Default: save the current state as the default preset. This preset is used every time a new instance of the plug-in is created.
  • Clear User Default: reset the default preset to its factory state: this makes the plug-in forgets the custom settings you might have saved as a default preset.

More about Presets

There are two types of presets: factory presets (read only) that are provided with the plug-in, and user presets that can be created and stored by the user.

The user presets are stored in a subdirectory of the documents folders of your profile ("Documents" on Mac, and "My Documents" on Windows): Blue Cat Audio/[Plug-in Name]/Presets. Each preset is stored as an individual file. You can create folders and subfolders in the Presets directory to classify your presets, as shown in the example below:

If you save a preset named "Default" in the root Presets directory, it will override the factory default preset (that's what "Save As Default" does). To restore the factory default preset, you can just remove this file or use the "Reset Default" command.

MIDI Program Change

It is possible to load presets remotely using MIDI "Bank Select" and "Program Change" messages. To enable this feature, select a MIDI channel to receive the events from in the MIDI Program Change menu item from the presets menu:

This setting is saved for each plug-in istance with your session but not in presets (except for the default preset, using the "Save as User Default command"). Once activated, the plug-in menu will display the bank number followed by the preset number for each preset:

Every root folder is considered as a new bank, starting with the factory presets (bank 0). Program and bank numbers may change while you add folders and presets, so you should be careful when naming them if bank and program numbers matter to you. It is recommended to use folders to make this task simpler. As a side note, sub folders do not define additional banks (all presets contained in sub folders are associated with the current bank.

As specified by MIDI, bank select messages are not used until a program is actually selected.

MIDI Implementation note: the software supports all types of Bank Select methods. You can use either MIDI CC 0 or MIDI CC 32 to select banks. If both are used simultaneously, they are combined together so that you can use more banks (in this case CC0 is LSB and CC32 is MSB, and actual bank number is 128*CC0+CC32).

MIDI and Automation Control

Blue Cat's Remote Control can also be remotely controlled via MIDI using MIDI CC ("Control Change") messages or automation curves, if your host application supports it. It is possible to customize the channel, control numbers, range and response curve used for each parameter in the settings panel available from the main menu (see the Plug-in Settings chapter for more details).

MIDI and Automation Settings Menu

The main menu

Most skins also provide the ability to change MIDI and automation settings directly in the main user interface. Clicking on the control settings icon in the main toolbar opens the following menu:

  • Show Control Settings: show direct access to individual control settings for each parameter in the user interface (see next paragraph).
  • Lock Control Settings: lock the current controls settings for MIDI and automation so that they remain unchanged when loading presets.
  • Use Global Control Settings: ignore the current MIDI/automation settings and use the global settings instead.
  • Control Settings Window: display the control settings window, to change control settings for all parameters.
  • Save As Global Control Settings: save the current settings as global settings (used by default, when no specific MIDI/Automation setting has been set for the cuirrent preset).

Individual Control Settings

When this feature is activated using the "Show Control Settings" item in the MIDI and Automation Settings menu, dropdown menu buttons appears next to the main controls displayed by the plug-in:

Clicking on this button shows the MIDI/Automation settings menu:

  • MIDI Learn: launches MIDI learn mode for the control: touch your MIDI controller and the control will learn from it the MIDI channel and CC number. To end the learn mode, reopen this menu and deselect the option.
  • MIDI Unlearn: deactivates MIDI control for this parameter.
  • Control Settings: launches the advanced settings panel described below. This controls the settings for the current preset.
  • All Control Settings: display the control settings window, with access to all parameters.

Advanced MIDI and Automation Settings

You can completely customize the way the plug-in is controlled by automation and MIDI. For a global view of all parameters at a time, you can use the Plug-in Settings window for the current preset which is available from the main menu.

MIDI Settings:

  • Enable MIDI: enable/disable the MIDI control of the parameter.
  • Channel: MIDI Channel for the parameter control. If set to 0, the plug-ins will accept Control Change Messages from all MIDI Channels (MIDI Omni mode).
  • CC: Control Change Number.
  • Learn: click on this button to activate the MIDI learn functionality. When it is activated, you can move your MIDI controller, and the plug-in will automatically set the MIDI Channel and CC Number.

MIDI and automation settings:

  • Response: response curve of the MIDI or automation control: from very fast to slow control.
  • Min: minimal value of the parameter when MIDI controlled or automated.
  • Max: Maximum value of the parameter when MIDI controlled or automated.

Note: if the Min value is higher than the Max value, the response curve will be reversed: increasing the control value will decrease the parameter value.

Note: if you double click on the parameter text control boxes for the max and min values, a “fine tuning” edit box will appear and let you change the min and max values with more precision:

MIDI and Automation Output

Blue Cat's Remote Control can also generate MIDI CC Events or automation curves thanks to its output parameters.

You have access to the same settings for the output parameters as you have for input parameters using the dropdown menu, except that you can also enable or disable automation.

The output parameters MIDI and Automation Menu:

The advanced output parameters MIDI and Automation settings window:

More

Check our online tutorial for more screenshots and more examples of our plug-ins user interfaces.

Blue Cat's Remote Control Parameters

All parameters described below can be automated and controlled via MIDI if your host application supports it. You can precisely define this behavior in the settings panels described later in this manual.

Input

The input parameters for the Remote Control 16 version are:

Param id

Name

Unit

Description

dsp.input0

Bypass


Bypass the effect (On/Off functionality)

dsp.input1

C 1

%

Control 1.

(...)




dsp.input16

C 16

%

Control 16.

The input parameters for the Remote Control 32 version are:

Param id

Name

Unit

Description

dsp.input0

Bypass


Bypass the effect (On/Off functionality)

dsp.input1

C 1

%

Control 1.

(...)




dsp.input32

C 32

%

Control 32.

The input parameters for the Remote Control 64 version are:

Param id

Name

Unit

Description

dsp.input0

Bypass


Bypass the effect (On/Off functionality)

dsp.input1

C 1

%

Control 1.

(...)




dsp.input64

C 64

%

Control 64.

Output

The output parameters for the Remote Control 16 version are:

Param id

Name

Unit

Description

dsp.output0

C 1

%

Control 1.

(...)




dsp.output15

C 16

%

Control 16.

The output parameters for the Remote Control 32 version are:

Param id

Name

Unit

Description

dsp.output0

C 1

%

Control 1.

(...)




dsp.output31

C 32

%

Control 32.

The output parameters for the Remote Control 64 version are:

Param id

Name

Unit

Description

dsp.output0

C 1

%

Control 1.

(...)




dsp.output63

C 64

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Control 64.

Plug-in Settings

In addition to the controls offered in the main user interface, Blue Cat's Remote Control has various settings that let you fine tune the behavior of the plug-in. You can choose to change these settings either for the current preset or globally for all instances of the plug-in.

The Global Settings Window

The settings available in this window apply to all instances of the plug-in, for all presets, if not overridden in the presets settings. Consider these settings as “default” settings.

General

You can change the default skin for all instances of the plug-in: write the skin file path in the text edit box or click on the button to open a file chooser dialog. If you have several instances of the plug-in opened in your session, you will have to re-open the user interfaces of these plug-ins to see the skin change.

The output data refresh rate can also be customized for all instances of the plug-in. It controls the refresh rate of non-audio data produced by the plug-in (parameters, curves...). It also controls the refresh rate of output MIDI CC messages or output automation data. The higher the refresh rate, the better precision, but also the higher cpu usage (some host applications may also have trouble recording MIDI data at high refresh rates). The default value is 50 Hz.

Global Control Input Settings (MIDI and Automation)

The plug-in offers a couple of settings that affect the way it is controlled by MIDI messages or automation. While the first settings only apply to MIDI control, the "Control Response", "Min" and "Max" settings apply to both automation and MIDI control.

For each parameter you can define a default MIDI channel and CC number. You can then control the plug-in with an external MIDI controller or one of our plug-ins that generate MIDI messages.

The settings below are available for each plug-in parameter.

MIDI Settings:

  • Enable MIDI: enable/disable the MIDI control of the parameter.
  • Channel: MIDI Channel for the parameter control. If set to 0, the plug-ins will accept Control Change Messages from all MIDI Channels (MIDI Omni mode).
  • CC: Control Change Number.
  • Learn: click on this button to activate the MIDI learn functionality. When it is activated, you can move your MIDI controller, and the plug-in will automatically set the MIDI Channel and CC Number.

MIDI and automation settings:

  • Response: response curve of the MIDI or automation control: from very fast to slow control.
  • Min: minimal value of the parameter when MIDI controlled or automated.
  • Max: Maximum value of the parameter when MIDI controlled or automated.

(generic screen shot, does not correspond to the actual plug-in parameters)

Note: if the Min value is higher than the Max value, the response curve will be reversed: increasing the control value will decrease the parameter value.

Note: if you double click on the parameter text control boxes for the max and min values, a “fine tuning” edit box will appear and let you change the min and max values with more precision:

"Send MIDI events when parameters values change": activate this option when using a control surface that accepts MIDI events as input. MIDI messages will be sent to the output of the plug-in when the user change the parameters values in the user interface, to keep the software and the controller in sync. MIDI is only sent for parameters that are activated for MIDI control.

Global Control Output Settings (MIDI and Automation)

You can set the same properties for the output parameters as for the input parameters: in this case, they may trigger MIDI CC messages or generate automation curves when modified. Since it's output, you cannot set the channel to MIDI Omni, so you must choose a channel.

Output parameters can also generate automation curves in most host applications. You can enable automation for any output parameters you are interested in (see the "Enable Autom." checkbox).

(generic screen shot, does not correspond to the actual plug-in parameters)

Note: if the Min value is higher than the Max value, the response curve will be reversed: increasing the control value will decrease the parameter value.

Note: if you double click on the parameter text control boxes for the max and min values, a “fine tuning” edit box will appear and let you change the min and max values with more precision:

The Current Preset Settings Window

In this window you can change the settings for the current preset of the current instance of the plug-in only.

Preset Skin

You can choose to use the global skin setting or to change the skin for the current preset. This way you can have different skins for different instances of the plug-in in the same session in order to differentiate them.

Preset Control Input Settings (MIDI and Automation)

Use the global settings or override them for the current preset. The parameters are the same as for the global input settings.

(generic screen shot, does not correspond to the actual plug-in parameters)

Preset Control Output Settings (MIDI and Automation)

Use the global settings or override them for the current preset. The parameters are the same as for the global output settings.

(generic screen shot, does not correspond to the actual plug-in parameters)

About Skins

Blue Cat's Remote Control integrates Blue Cat's skinning engine that allows you to customize the user interface. You can download alternate skins for your plug-in at the following address:

http://www.bluecataudio.com/Skins/Product_RemoteControl

If you don't find a skin that fits your need or if you want a custom one, you can choose to create your own skin.

Choosing the Skin

There are two ways to select the skin of your plug-in: you can change the default (or 'global') skin, or change the skin for the current preset only (either in the preset settings page or from the main menu). The global skin applies to all plug-in instances (choose this one if you want to use the skin used by default, regardless of the session or preset), whereas the current preset skin only applies to the current preset of the current plug-in instance (use this one if you want to change only the skin for the current session/preset).

Note: in some host applications, the plug-in window won't resize automatically when you choose a skin with a different size. In this case, just close the window and re-open it: it will be displayed with the right size.

The Skins Menu

The skins menu can be opened from the main menu. It displays the list of skins available for the plug-in as well as commands to manage the skin used by default when no preset skin has been selected:

  • First Section - Factory Skins: shows the list of factory skins delivered with the plug-in ("Default" and "Light" in this example).
  • Second Section - User Skins: shows the list of user skins that have been installed in the Documents Skins folder for the plug-in (see below).
  • Use Global Skin: use the global skin for the current preset/session (unloads any custom skin previously selected for the current preset).
  • Load: opens a file browser dialog to manually select the skin from the file system.
  • Save As Global Skin: use the current preset skin as the global skin (loaded by default if no preset skin has been defined).

Installing User Skins

To select user skins directly from the skins menu, install them in the "Skins" directory available in the plug-in's documents folder:

[Your Documents Folder]/Blue Cat Audio/[Plugin Name]/Skins/

The skin engine will scan this folder for new skins (xml files) and display them in the menu. The skin files should be in the root skins folder or in a subdirectory inside this folder: subdirectories are not scanned recursively.

Other Methods to Select Skins

You can also select the skins in the settings panels available from the main menu:

The global skin (used by default if no preset skin has been selected) can be changed in the global settings pane. The current preset skin can be changed in the preset settings page .

Create a Custom Skin

You can create custom skins for your plug-in in order to adapt it to your exact needs. You can change its look and feel and make it completely integrated in your virtual studio!

Just read the Blue Cat's Skinning Language manual and download the samples for the tutorial on http://www.bluecataudio.com/Skins. You can get ready to create your own skins in a few minutes. You can then share your skins on our website.

More...

This manual only covers the basics of Blue Cat's Remote Control. Our website offers many additional resources for your Blue Cat's Remote Control plug-in and is constantly updated, so keep an eye on it! You will find below a few examples of available resources.

Tutorials

Many Tutorials are available on our website. They cover a wide range of topics and host applications.

You can find here a list of tutorials related to the Blue Cat's Remote Control plug-in.

Extra Skins

We encourage our customers to propose their own skins for our products and we often propose alternative skins to let you choose the one that best suits your needs. You can check Blue Cat's Remote Control skins page to get the latest skins.

Updates

As you can see in the history log below, we care about constantly updating our products in order to give you the latest technology available. Please visit our website often to check if Blue Cat's Remote Control has been updated, or subscribe to our Newsletter to be informed of the latest news about our products.

Note: minor version updates are available from the same location as the original full version download (link received by email upon purchase). The demo version publicly available on our website will not let you register.

You can also follow us on twitter, facebook and instagram for almost real time updates notification, and subscribe to our YouTube channel to watch the latest videos about our software.

Versions History

V3.1 (2022/07/21)

  • Now available as a standalone application (can run without any host application)
  • Added an option in global & preset input settings to send MIDI events when MIDI-enabled parameters are modified in the plug-in (to update control surfaces accordingly). These MIDI output messages work independently from the usual Remote Control outputs (it's only for control surface feedback).
  • Improved undo management and automation when using the mouse wheel to move knobs and sliders.
  • Fixed VST3 version not showing in Cubase.
  • Fixed VST3 version not loading properly in Ableton Live 11.

V3.0 (2021/11/09)

New Features and Improvements:
  • Brand new GUI design, with improved usability and touchscreen support.
  • The GUI can now be zoomed from 70% to 200%.
  • Now packaged as a single plug-in.
  • The plug-in now sends MIDI CC events only when parameters change or a new preset is loaded.
  • Now supports retina displays on Mac
  • VST: the user interface is now properly resized in Cubase on Windows.
  • New installer on Mac.
  • Brand new presets management system.
  • Presets can now be selected using MIDI Program change and bank select messages (can be activated with the presets menu/MIDI Program Change item), or MIDI CC events for next/previous preset.
  • Copy/paste the plug-in's current state from the presets menu using the system clipboard.
  • Full Unicode Support.
  • Updated demo limitations: up to 5 instances allowed, bypass time changed to half a second, and bypass parameter is not affected anymore.
Compatibility:
  • Apple Silicon (M1 processor) support.
  • Now compatible with MacOS Catalina and Big Sur.
  • VST3 plug-in format support.
  • Dropped support for Windows XP and Mac OS X 10.8 and earlier.
  • Dropped support for legacy RTAS and DirectX plug-ins formats.
Note: this new version can be installed side by side with the previous version for backward compatibility reasons. Installing this new version won't break your previous projects.

V2.32 (2014/03/20)

  • Fixed 64-bit VST MIDI Events not sent for the first output parameter in the list.
  • Windows VST installer now detects the VST plug-ins path and remembers previous install location for updates.
  • Fixed Audio Unit validation issue on OSX Mavericks/Logic Pro X.
  • Fixed VST plug-in window frame not showing in Cubase 7.5 (32-bit) on Mac.
  • Fixed VST version that could not be loaded in Audio HiJack Pro (Mac).

V2.31 (2011/02/10)

  • Fixed keyboard focus stealing issue in Pro Tools and several other host applications.
  • 64-bit Mac VST support.

V2.3 (2010/06/02)

  • RTAS plugin format support for Pro Tools (Mac and Windows).
  • 64-bit applications support for Windows DX and VST under Windows x64.
  • Mac AU 64-bit format support (compatible with 64-bit Logic 9.1 on Snow Leopard)
  • Space bar does not trigger plug-in buttons anymore (avoids conflict with transport control in most applications).
  • Demo version now displays a nag screen only once per session, and only when opening the user interface of the plug-in.
  • Fixed MIDI learn issues.
  • Performance inprovements (processing and user interface).
  • Mac: fixed user interface crashes in some hosts under Snow Leopard.
  • Mac: fixed keyboard/mouse focus issues in some hosts.
  • Mac: fixed multiple screens issue.
  • Mac-AU: fixed user interface resizing issue when changing skin in some hosts (Logic).
  • Mac-AU: fixed settings lost issue when doing offline rendering in some applications.
  • Mac AU: output parameters routing now works for more than one instance in Logic Pro's Environment.
  • Mac AU: fixed output parameters that could exceed defined range and not record properly as automation curves.

V2.2 (2009/09/30)

  • Controls names can now be customized from the user interface (no need to change the skins).
  • Output automation is now disabled by default.
  • Bug fix (PC): Cubase freezes when loading a preset using a different skin while the plugin window is open.
  • Blue Cat's Skinning Language 1.6.1 support for enhanced user interface customization.

V2.11 (2009/05/05)

Mac VST update: fixed incompatibility issues with Cubase 5 on Mac.

V2.1 (2009/04/01)

  • Mac Audio Unit support.
  • Mac VST Support.
  • Automation output can now be disabled for hosts that do not propose automated parameters choice.
  • New Windows installer (you should uninstall any previous version before installing this new one).
  • New documentation.
  • Minor user interfaces changes.

V2.0 (2008/02/07)

  • New user interface design.
  • New joystick skin with XY controls.
  • Undo/Redo support.
  • Window Opacity Management: make the plugin window transparent and see behind.
  • Load/Save presets in a host-independent format: you can now share presets between the directX and VST versions.
  • New toolbar to access main functionalities.
  • MIDI settings are now available from the plugin user interface.
  • Improved Skins loading performance.
  • Curves are now anti-aliased.
  • Improved the display of parameters values in the MIDI settings panel and the host application.
  • Improved graphs refresh rate.
  • Reduced memory consumption when using several instances.
  • Default values for MIDI controllers have been changed to be more convenient.
  • Blue Cat's Skinning Language 1.4.1 support.

V1.0 (2006/12/16)

First version.

Thanks again for choosing our software!

See you soon on www.bluecataudio.com!