Basic MIDI Tutorial for VSTs in Cubase

This tutorial is aimed at people who are new to using MIDI in their DAW and need some guidance on how to start using it effectively with their chosen VSTs. Anyone who has much experience with MIDI will probably not find much of interest here but I will be doing an advanced MIDI drum mixing tutorial later in the year which will cover things I think even experienced users will want to find out about.

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  • Sprocket Doggingsworth

    Thanks a lot. I'm looking to make a switch from Logic X to Cubase, and this is very helpful. Which version of Cubase is this? Would you recommend the newest one (Cubase Pro 9), and how do you set up multiple instances of Kontakt once you have exhausted the 16 track limit?


    I don't have problem to record MIDI with VST instruments basically, but if I try to use the Arpeggiator of my hardware synth, it doesn't send the wanted signal to Cubase. If you know how to do that, please let me know. I am using the MIDI cables.

  • Mumbo Jumbo De Runter

    Great tutorial! I got a few questions and i hope you can help me. I've spend many hours figuring out but i get the feeling i'am doing something completely wrong since i can't find anything related to my problem. I have a Korg Z1 synthesizer and i want to controle it from Cubase. I use the controller lanes in Cubase and configured the Korg Z1 with the corresponding CC's. Everything works fine but whenever i use more CC lanes simultaneously or when i make quick changes in the CC lanes then my synthesizer skips certain commands. Simply said: The more commands i send from my computer, the less commands get received by the Korg Z1. (i have 2 different computers, 2 versions of Cubase, 2 audio interfaces and 2 Korg z1 synthesizers but the problem is exactly the same)

    Do you need to install some sort of driver for any external device, in my case the Korg Z1?

    Is it "necessary" to install the device in the device manager?
    (Since it does work without it… and the Korg Z1 is a tone generator by itself)

    What is the difference between the controller lanes and the panels in the device manager?

    In what other ways can i use the sounds of the Korg Z1 and controle it's effects?

    I hope you can help me or advice me whats more likely to be the problem.
    Thanks in advance.

  • respectfulremixer

    Excellent work! I have a MIDI recording question…I have a Korg Triton Extreme with songs created. I want to play these songs in cubase AI 8 so I have simply saved the song as a midi file in the Extreme and loaded said file into cubase and then using a patchlist downloaded from the net, assigned each midi track to the corresponding triton program. However, I am struggling with recording the track in cubase. With local control off / ext midi control on in triton, its not responding to song start button. If I press record in cubase shouldnt this trigger record in triton?Thanks

  • RiverRuns NC

    Great tutorial!  Question – I have Cubase AI4 that came with a Yamaha product I purchased.  I also have M-Audio Fast Track Ultra for AI.  When I'm trying to play a midi file via AI4 I do not get any sound, but the file is playing.

    I have no VSTs added.. just from the interface.  What additional settings do I need to do in order to hear the midi file while playing?

  • Crusty1703

    Hi James – just a simple question which hopefully you can help with.
    I use cubase and get my Midi sounds via an external Yamaha MU128 tone generator.
     I can change the instrument sound on any midi track playing  by reselecting on the MU128 but when I restart the track the instrument reverts back to the original. How do I change the instrument ( say from trumpet to sax) in Cubase so that it saves the change?
    Your advice would be much appreciated.

  • The Arkham Rebellion

    When you create your midi track, do you use the range selectors to designate a size before you click? As far as I remember you have to click within a range zone for the midi editing zone to appear. If you mean that the midi zone appears but when you double click on it the edit window doesn't come up, then I'm not sure why that would be – you can also access it through the MIDI menu along the top menu bar if the problem persists

  • Luis Garcia

    sorry for this silly question… but when i double click the space after adding the midi track, there's no grid coming out 🙁 is there any settings i haven't activated yet?

  • NewWorldShogun

    Greeat job James. Wish I would have had these tutorials back when I first got into music and messing around with recording programs. Would have made learning how to use these programs a lot easier. Had a lot of trial and error moments. LOL

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