Old 03-21-2020, 05:29 PM   #1
turntable
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Default No Stereo or Mono plugin options

For some reason some of the 3rd party vst plugins don't show options for Mono or Stereo when I insert them. See picture attached.

Thanks in advance
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Old 03-21-2020, 05:47 PM   #2
domzy
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did they previously have options for mono / stereo?
I've never used softube plugins so i don't know much about them, but in my experience most plugins don't have separate versions for mono /stereo (except FabFilter, of the plugins i've used).
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Old 03-22-2020, 02:27 AM   #3
Heart Doctor
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Default Using VST3 plugins in REAPER

Quote:
Originally Posted by turntable View Post
For some reason some of the 3rd party vst plugins don't show options for Mono or Stereo when I insert them.
The plugins shown in your list are VST3 versions.

Whereas separate mono and stereo versions are always required in case of VST (=VST2), the VST3 plugin format allows to put both processing modes into one plugin. Some manufacturers make use of this advanced technique, others decided to provide separate plugins for mono and stereo.

In the following I describe how to use VST3 plugins in REAPER. We look at two common examples.

WAVES
Waves provides separate VST3 plugins for mono and stereo. This makes them very easy to use in REAPER. Depending on the selected plugin variant, REAPER automatically assigns suitable pin connectors. Mono plugins get "1 in 1 out", and stereo plugins get "2 in 2 out".

You can open the pin connector panel and click the [+] symbol to extend it. Now you can set additional pins for external sidechaining. If you enable any pins, external sidechaining will be used. If you click [-] to collapse the additional input channels, external sidechaining will be disabled.

SOFTUBE
Your screenshot shows plugins by Softube. Softube decided to combine mono and stereo processing into one plugin.

In Cubase this is very convenient because here we have dedicated mono and stereo tracks. The track type automatically determines which processing mode should be used.

In REAPER we have the problem that a track can contain any number of channels. REAPER cannot know if a pair of channels in a track contains a (dual) mono signal or a true stereo signal.

Fortunately, you can still use VST3 plugins made by Softube in REAPER. You only have to specify some settings manually. Proceed as follows:

1. Insert the VST3 plugin

2. Right-click the pin connector field. This is the field between [Param] and [UI].

3. Click [Request VST3 bus channel count]

4. Select "mono" or "stereo" depending on the desired processing type

The processing type specifies how many inputs and outputs are available for the plugin. Now we must connect the inputs and outputs of the plugin with the channels in the track.

5. Click the pin connector field again. (This time a normal click, not a right-click).

6. Set the pin connectors as required

The screenshot shows an example for stereo processing.

In case of Softube, internal/external sidechaining is selected by setting a switch in the plugin interface. But you can assign input pins for sidechaining beforehand; this does not automatically enable external sidechaining.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg softube1.jpg (30.1 KB, 21 views)
File Type: png softube2.png (4.1 KB, 16 views)

Last edited by Heart Doctor; 03-22-2020 at 08:34 AM.
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Old 03-22-2020, 10:14 AM   #4
Monotremata
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Wow thanks for that explanation @Heart Doctor!

Tried using Reaper off and on for about 10 years or so now, but Im looking at just moving to it so Im not tied to Logic/Apple anymore. Still getting used to this freely routable track configuration and you just answered a couple big questions for me right there.. That explains why some plugins have mono/stereo versions, and well, there's how to use side chain on my comps! The whole pin matrix thing still confuses me coming from Logic Pro, but that helped a little. Ill have to go back through the tracks Im working on today and make sure everything is good.

I take it the same thing applies to Audio Units?? I dont see any mono/stereo versions of those either like I do in Logic Pro, Im assuming they're an all in one thing like a VST3 and I can just adjust the pins accordingly?

This is going to take some work here, I should probably pick one format and stick with it like I had to with Logic..
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Old 03-22-2020, 10:27 AM   #5
turntable
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Default mono plugins

Hi there

thanks for taking the time to reply. How would the pin connector look for a mono plugin?

L
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Old 03-22-2020, 02:47 PM   #6
Heart Doctor
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Default Example: Waves Stereo

I will give some examples for the use of VST3 plugins in REAPER.

Let us assume that your track has four channels:
- Channels 1 and 2 carry the main signal (stereo or dual mono)
- Channels 3 and 4 carry the sidechaining signal (stereo or dual mono)

Let us start with Waves plugins and stereo tracks.

1. Insert the stereo version of the plugin (e.g. RCompressor Stereo)

2. Leave the VST3 channel count at "auto"

3. Set the pin connectors as shown in the screenshots.

Waves plugins automatically switch to external sidechaining when you expand the connector tree. They switch back to internal sidechaining when you collapse the connector tree.

Please note that not all Waves compressor plugins are equipped with sidechain inputs. For example, RCompressor, dbx-160 and H-Comp are equipped; RenAxx, RVox and C1 are not.
Attached Images
File Type: png channels_auto.png (8.5 KB, 10 views)
File Type: png waves_stereo.png (3.9 KB, 8 views)
File Type: png waves_stereo_sc.png (4.4 KB, 10 views)
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Old 03-22-2020, 02:57 PM   #7
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Default Example: Waves Mono

Now we look at Waves plugins and mono processing.

A mono channel in REAPER in in reality a stereo channel that carries two identical signals. This is also called "dual mono".

1. Insert the mono version of the plugin (e.g. RCompressor Mono)

2. Leave the VST3 channel count at "auto"

3. Set the pin connectors as shown in the screenshots.

The mono processor contains 1 input and 1 output. We tap one of the channels and send its signal into the plugin. Then we tap the output of the plugin and forward it to both channels.

You could as well send the other channel into the plugin. But you should not send both channels into the input because this would double the volume of the input signal.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg channels_auto.jpg (17.5 KB, 7 views)
File Type: png waves_mono.png (3.5 KB, 8 views)
File Type: png waves_mono_sc.png (4.0 KB, 10 views)

Last edited by Heart Doctor; 03-22-2020 at 03:13 PM.
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Old 03-22-2020, 03:11 PM   #8
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Default Example: Softube Stereo

Softube plugins have mono and stereo processing built into the same plugin. This means that we must tell REAPER what to use in a given track.

1. Insert the VST3 plugin (e.g. TubeTech CL1B or ValleyPeople Dynamite)

2. Set the VST3 channel count to "stereo"

3. Set the pin connectors as shown in the screenshots.

Softube plugins do not automatically switch to external sidechaining when you expand the connector tree. You must in addition set the switch on the plugin to "ext." However, the plugin automatically switches back to internal sidechaining when you collapse the connector tree.

Note that the plugin contains only one sidechain input even in case of stereo processing. For this reason we send both sidechain channels to the input. The combined signal is used to control compression.

Tip: If external sidechaining does not react although everything is set up properly, it may help if you collapse the connector tree and then expand it again.
Attached Images
File Type: png channels_stereo.png (8.5 KB, 7 views)
File Type: png softube_stereo.png (3.6 KB, 6 views)
File Type: jpg softube_stereo_sc.jpg (11.8 KB, 7 views)
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Old 03-22-2020, 03:21 PM   #9
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Default Example: Softube Mono

Finally we have Softube VST3 plugins and mono processing.

1. Insert the VST3 plugin (e.g. TubeTech CL1B or ValleyPeople Dynamite)

2. Set the VST3 channel count to "mono"

3. Set the pin connectors as shown in the screenshots.

These are the same settings as in case of Waves. However, you must additionally enable external sidechaining on the plugin panel.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg channels_mono.jpg (17.5 KB, 8 views)
File Type: png softube_mono.png (3.4 KB, 9 views)
File Type: png softube_mono_sc.png (3.9 KB, 6 views)
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Old 03-22-2020, 11:11 PM   #10
Monotremata
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So for regular VST and Audio Units.. Those don't seem to be able to request the channel count like VST3s can. You end up with the stereo L/R blocks. Would the output block be pinned like a normal stereo channel (Out L->1, Out R->2) or would you pin it Out L->1, Out R->1?

I was playing around with a couple songs of mine today switching the plugins around on the mono tracks I had. My meters started doing weird stuff at times, and for whatever reason, its like the assignments, or at least the graphics, are resetting too. When I open the plugin, the parameter at the top has changed back to '2 In 2 Out' and if I click on it, it shows the normal stereo assignments. But if I click on the + and expand it, it magically turns back into the mono routing and everything is back to normal.
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Old 03-23-2020, 03:35 AM   #11
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Default VST plugins: Mono processing with Stereo plugins

In case of VST plugins, you get different plugins depending on the intended processing mode. For example, the Sonalksis compressor comes in four variants:

- Stereo (2 inputs, 2 outputs)
- Stereo SC (2 inputs, 2 SC inputs, 2 outputs)
- Mono (1 input, 1 output)
- Mono SC (1 input, 1 SC input, 1 output)

In these cases the pins will already be connected correctly after the plugin has been loaded.

Other plugin makers do not offer separate VST versions. For example:

Sonnox EQ: Stereo only (2 inputs, 2 outputs)
Sonnox Compressor: Stereo only (2 inputs, 2 SC inputs, 2 outputs)

The general rule for stereo processing is that you create diagonal lines for all inputs and outputs. (Sidechain inputs have no output.)
See "vst_stereo" image.

The general rule for mono processing is that you connect only one input (e.g. L). You use the related output (in this case L) and send it to both channels.
See "vst_mono" image.

How do you process in mono if you have only a stereo plugin?

The simple way is to use stereo processing for your dual mono track.
See "vst_stereo" image.

Because both channels contain the same signal (dual mono), both sides of the plugin will receive the same input, perform the same calculations, and output the same result to the related channel.

This is of course a waste of processing power. You may save processing power if you use only one side of the plugin for processing. For this you connect the pins as in case of a mono plugin. You simply ignore the second input and output of the plugin.
See "vst_stereo_mono".

I have no experience with AU plugins but I assume that the methods shown above can also be applied for AU plugins.
Attached Images
File Type: png vst_stereo.png (3.4 KB, 9 views)
File Type: png vst_mono.png (3.1 KB, 8 views)
File Type: png vst_stereo_mono.png (3.4 KB, 8 views)

Last edited by Heart Doctor; 03-23-2020 at 05:36 AM.
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Old 03-23-2020, 09:12 AM   #12
Monotremata
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Ok cool thats what I figured.. This routing freedom is taking some time to wrap my head around coming from Logic. I noticed last night by opening a Waves mono plugin it had both outputs marked, but some of the other VSTs only used one output. I just went through and set all of the stereo ones for single input, dual output like the Waves mono ones. Did the same with any AUs as well, although I started replacing the AU's with the VST versions to keep everything on the same page.

There weird thing is it seems like the graphics are resetting. When I reopen the song, all the plugins say 2 in/2 out again. If I open the I/O screen they're back to the standard stereo routing, but if I click the + button to expand it, it turns back into the mono setup and works from then on until I close and reopen the song. Im guessing its just a graphical glitch? Everything seems to still play fine.
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Old 03-23-2020, 03:17 PM   #13
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This is strange and I cannot reproduce this error.

A stereo plugin will of course always display "2 in 2 out" (or "2/4 in 2 out" if it has sidechain connections), no matter how you connect the pins. The display shows only what is available for connection, not how many inputs/outputs are actually connected.

And all pin connections should be maintained after saving and reloading a project. A stereo plugin set up for mono processing should keep this setting.

I have tested this with a few VST plugins (Sonnox, Sonalksis, WaveArts) and always find the intended behavior.
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Old 03-25-2020, 09:58 AM   #14
Naji
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Default Vst3

Heartdoctor wrote:

1. Insert the VST3 plugin

2. Right-click the pin connector field. This is the field between [Param] and [UI].

3. Click [Request VST3 bus channel count]

4. Select "mono" or "stereo" depending on the desired processing

I also use some Softube plugins. Is it really necessary to set a VSt3 to mono for a mono signal or can't you just keep the default setting?
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Old 03-25-2020, 03:56 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Naji View Post
Is it really necessary to set a VSt3 to mono for a mono signal or can't you just keep the default setting?
It depends. If you don't need extermal sidechain inputs, you can just load the VST3 plugin and leave everything as is.

A Softube Equalizer e.g. will load as "2 in 2 out". This is perfect for stereo processing. It can also be used for mono processing because in REAPER a mono track is in reality a "dual mono" track. That is, a stereo track with two identical channels.

A Softube Compressor will load as "2/3 in 2 out". As long as you don't need the sidechain input, you can use this for stereo as well as for mono processing.

However, as soon as you click the [+] button and expand the connector tree, you will notice that things get weird. The stereo plugin suddenly turns into a mono plugin. You cannot connect the sidechain pins without messing up everything.

For this reason, I would recommend that you always request the VST3 bus channel count for Softube plugins. If you don't want to make use of mono settings, just select "stereo" on principle. Stereo processing is also usable for mono tracks.

In case of Waves or other plugin manufacturers that offer separate mono and stereo plugins, there is no need to requrest the VST3 bus channel count. The automatic setting already works properly.
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Old 03-26-2020, 12:44 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heart Doctor View Post
This is strange and I cannot reproduce this error.

A stereo plugin will of course always display "2 in 2 out" (or "2/4 in 2 out" if it has sidechain connections), no matter how you connect the pins. The display shows only what is available for connection, not how many inputs/outputs are actually connected.

And all pin connections should be maintained after saving and reloading a project. A stereo plugin set up for mono processing should keep this setting.

I have tested this with a few VST plugins (Sonnox, Sonalksis, WaveArts) and always find the intended behavior.
I think I figured out what causes it, hopefully I can explain it.. So, the same project last night was doing the exact same thing.. After loading the song, I opened up one of my mono plugins, it said 2 in/2 out and the pin connector was back to a stereo setup. When I clicked the +, the graphics turned back into a mono setup, and the plugin showed 1 in/1 out. Went through and did this to every single plugin in the song, saved it, and it all reset again when I reopened it.

Through a bunch of trial and error, resetting/saving/reopening/etc, I think I figured it out. When you first add a VST3, it defaults to a stereo plugin in Reaper apparently. What I think is happening is, if you go straight to the I/O menu and request mono channels, it changes it to a mono setup with 1 in and 1 out. Somehow that Channel 2/R output in the stereo setup is sticking around, and when you reopen the song, the plugin reverts back to the stereo setup until you open the pin connector and hit the + to expand it. I got it to finally work by opening the plugins, and before clicking the + button, I moved the R output over to channel 1 like a 'normal' mono plugin is routed (at least thats how Waves does it), and THEN expanded the pin diagram. I did this on a couple and saved and reopened the song a few times after and they finally stick now. Im too new to Reaper and how the audio routing works to tell if this is a bug or just the way it works hehe. I kinda miss the 'dumb routing' in Logic some days haha.
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Old 03-26-2020, 05:01 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monotremata View Post
After loading the song, I opened up one of my mono plugins, it said 2 in/2 out and the pin connector was back to a stereo setup. When I clicked the +, the graphics turned back into a mono setup, and the plugin showed 1 in/1 out. Went through and did this to every single plugin in the song, saved it, and it all reset again when I reopened it.
Hi Monotremata,

the effect that you describe happens when the VST3 bus channel count for the plugin is set to "auto".

Are you sure that you have set the VST3 bus channel count to "mono" or "stereo" as shown in the attached screenshots?
Attached Images
File Type: png channels_mono.png (8.4 KB, 7 views)
File Type: jpg channels_stereo.jpg (17.5 KB, 7 views)
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Old 03-26-2020, 07:46 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heart Doctor View Post
Hi Monotremata,

the effect that you describe happens when the VST3 bus channel count for the plugin is set to "auto".

Are you sure that you have set the VST3 bus channel count to "mono" or "stereo" as shown in the attached screenshots?
Yep all set to auto. I didn't even know that was an option until I read this thread last week! For all I know it could be the plugin I was using, FrontDAW, but its on every track. I haven't had a chance to sit and work on anything today I should fire it up and make sure everything is still mono haha.

EDIT: Yep I reopened the three projects I "fixed" and all the plugins were still set to mono this time.. I opened one of the projects I haven't worked on yet, and did some more testing just now. I can reproduce it every time now, as well as avoid it. What you have to do is move Output R/2 over to Output L/2 BEFORE you tell it to request the channels as mono. If you move the pin over first, and then tell it to request mono channels, you can see the graphics actually update on the main plugin GUI to 1 In/1 Out and the pinout finally changes as it should too. Now, if you open the plugin and immediately tell it to request mono, the graphics stay stuck on 2 in/2 out and the pinout doesn't change until you click the + button. And once you close the project, it resets back. I tried to get a screenshot of one of the plugins set to 'request mono' and showing the pinout but the I/O menu that shows the channel request setting goes away the minute I click out of Reapers window and open the Mac's screenshot app. I took a picture with my phone so if anyone really wants to see it I can upload it, but that was the best I could do for a screenshot haha. So far this has happened with FrontDAW, Melda's free plugins, and the handful of VST3 PSP plugs I have. Waves are working great but obviously they have specific mono and stereo plugs so..

Last edited by Monotremata; 03-26-2020 at 08:16 PM.
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