View Full Version : Control Plug-In Parameters with a MIDI control surface

01-29-2015, 02:07 AM
Hi All,

I have developed a system to control Pro Tools plug-in parameters with an off-the-shelf MIDI control surface. It uses ControllerMate software, which is a cool macro building app. I've dubbed this the ProMIDIco system. (Just needed something!)

I have released a free tutorial comprised of a video, text, and example files. It is very indepth, so if you want to give this a try it has all the info you need to get started.

You need Pro Tools 11, MIDI control surface that has endless knobs (encoders) and ControllerMate software (I'm not affiliated, just a long time user).

At this time Pro Tools 10 is not well supported, though some users have come up with work arounds.

What this allows you to do is map the endless knobs to any parameter in a plug-in, and have very fine level control over it.

It requires some willingness to dig in and do some configuring to set it all up. If you are a mid-level MIDI programmer it will be no problem. I plan to start a page where people can post maps for specific plug-ins as well.

I developed this system because I was determined to have what I think should be a basic feature in Pro Tools 11: to map any plug-in parameter to a knob controller of the users choice.

In my studio I use Behringer BCR2000 because it has a lot of endless knobs, and is dirt cheap. I have a semi-permanent set of plug-in parameters mapped to specific knobs. So when I open a plug-in window, I can simply grab a knob and make adjustments. No paging or mode switching required!

There is literally no other way to do this with a small format control surface in Pro Tools 11. Both Novation's Automap and M-Audio's Hypercontrol do not work in PT11, and there is no indication that they ever will. That leaves the HUI based controllers, which are fine for basic fader levels and pan knobs, but virtually unusable for efficient parameters use. Avid's Artist series have a nice design, and I think are conceptually sound, but in practice in our studio the Eucon protocol has been to buggy to use. They are also don't have very many knobs. (The good old Mackie Control remains rock solid:)

At first I thought this was such a hack that no one else would be interested, but as I have been working with it I find that it actually does work! For the first time ever, I am using hardware knobs to control parameters in Pro Tools as part of my regular workflow.

I am hoping to get other like minded producers interested and to develop the system further.

This link has everything you need to get started:http://dnamusiclabs.com/harmonic-distortion/protools-controllermate-tutorial
Here's some videos that introduce the ProMIDIco system. (note, it's not called that in the video, as I just made up this name yesterday

Feel free to hit me back with questions or comments. Brian



12-24-2015, 12:41 PM
Can't believe this hasn't got more attention?? :confused:
Turn your favorite SSL plugin into a real hardware channelstrip, like SoftTubes Console 1, but for a fraction of the price and without it's limitations. This is what the PT community has been waiting for to happened. It's here now, so go check it out! :-)

12-29-2015, 02:47 AM
This is (almost) exactly what I am searching for! I completely agree to your core requirements in your linked article.
Now I need to find something like ControllerMate for Windows... :confused:

12-30-2015, 12:41 PM
Cool I had to buy controlmate 2 years a go so my lil ones could use a ps3 controller to play mine-craft on a mac.

thanks for posting your findings

10-19-2016, 04:33 PM
How is this going? Any further improvements? I am super interested in trying this out! Anything I should know not included in this thread before doing so? Thank you!

05-29-2018, 01:15 AM

Sir Hannes
09-14-2018, 02:41 AM
for me it seems way to complicated to organize each plugin I am using by hand, parameter parameter parameter.

what I appreciate is there's no need for these MIDI monster.

well, the inventor of an easy solution might be the same hero who brings to us a pill against loosing hairs :D

09-18-2018, 05:25 AM
My "easy solution" is a Novation Launchkey midi keyboard, which has 8 sliders and 8 knobs, plus 16 trigger buttons. It is easy enough to set up.