CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

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strat1962
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CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by strat1962 »

Hi Guys, the title pretty much says it all. I'm thinking of buying the CMC six pack. At the moment I use a Behringer BCF with Cubase 7 and 6.5 on a PC. Any opinions from owners/users most appreciated. Thanks in advance.
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by BriHar »

I use a custom Cubase/Nuendo PC keyboard (with colour coded keys labelled with keycommands). I also use a Shuttle for transport control and scrubbing.
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I also have a Graphic tablet as well as a more conventional mouse plus a Behringer BCF2000.
To this I have now added the complete family of CMC controllers (incl. 4 CMC-FDs i.e. 16 tracks)
I'm weaning myself off of the keyboard for most commands as well as the shuttle for transport control and using the CMC units more and more.
The hardest to get used to are the fader controllers - once you're used to physical faders (as on the BCF - even though these are rather cheap and noisy as you are aware) it's hard to get used to the touch fader analogy, but it does eventually come especially once you get over trying to set them using their own display - you need to be looking at the fader level on the monitor (should do this also with the BCF actually). The other hurdle is knowing at a given time which fader is which track (like with the BCF, there is a white underline showing which faders are being controlled) and unlike the BCF which will select the track when a fader is moved. the CMC-FD does not.
Overall, I would definitely recommend the CMC series with the one caveat - prepare to spend some time getting used to the FDs if you choose to get these.
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by strat1962 »

Hi Bri, thanks for a very informative answer. I don't mind using the keyboard as most of the shortcuts are embedded in my brain but I would welcome a more intuitive experience with the interface.

I understand the point you are making regarding the use of the CMC faders. As you are aware the BCF2000 has LEDs which indicate what channel is selected, do the CMCs display this in any way, for example if just one channel is selected within the bank of 8? Thanks in advance. Steve
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by BriHar »

No the FDs do not indicate which channel is selected, and as I mentioned previously do not cause the focus to change when a fader is actuated as does the BCF. They will however show if a channel is muted or soloed. This is actually not such a problem when mixing generally - it actually bothered me during mixing that the focus would hop tracks when adjusting the faders on the BCF. When I am tracking or editing on a specific track I use the CMC-CH which is always the track with the focus and has all the relevant controls on one surface. The FDs I use for mixing i.e. I can move multiple faders at a time e.g. when mixing the individual drums, I'll have them all in sequence in the mixer and can freely mix the individual drum tracks while the focus remains fixed on the folder track for example. You really do get used to them after a while.
Another thing that takes getting used to, and again really needs to be watched on the mixer is the PAN control. Unlike the BCF with it's LED ring, the CMC has a single illumination which varies in intensity and is obviously much less intuitive as an indicator. The control has a course and a fine control mode, the course being the default which is good, the BCF is always in fine mode but the LED ring is course which means you need to look at the exact setting on the mixer for fine setting even on the BCF (this is particularly noticeable when you want to center the pan control, on the BCF when the 12 o'clock Led is lit, you can be off left or right by as much as 10 , on the CMC when the indicator is dark you know you're centered, it's like a detent. If you-ve ever mixed on an analog board, you'll actually find the CMC pan control more natural feeling.
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by Home Studio 87 »

use CMC 6pack + 3x more CMC FD with iPad (IC Pro & Lemur for shortcut & some missing controls) very happy with this !
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by JMCecil »

I'm a nay sayer. This is another set of hardware from Steinberg that was abandoned while still poorly implemented. They could be good, but without further dev, they are just frustrating.
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by G-string »

I love my QC and now ive bought turnado ( sugarbytes) and can control 8 effects with one QC control ........ im loving it !!!!
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by garbagetruckdriver »

I just got a look at the NUAGE controller at BroadcastAsia in Singapore this past week. Whilst it is aimed at controlling Nuendo and has a few features that aren't implemented on Cubase, it is a highly compelling option. I saw the Steven Slate Raven at NAMM in January - it was not a flawless demo and seemed like there were plenty of bugs to work out, and that was just with ProTools. The NUAGE however, performed super fast and flawlessly. Lots of customizable buttons with button covers you could customize (write labels). The way the 24" monitors line up over the mixer channels is highly useful and the control surface with built in monitor looks so well thought out. Motorized faders, labels and color schemes imported from Nuendo (Cubase too?), ability to talk to three DAWs... very sexy.
The Jog Wheel on the controller section was perfection.
It isn't released yet and the Yamaha guys could only give suggested prices of US$10k and $12k for the fader pack and controller pack.
The CMC series looked like an interesting idea. I have the full suite. They helped my workflow a little but firmware issues, loss of functionality during the C6<C7 upgrade, random reordering of fader packs, disappearing off the USB bus forcing a system restart - not a fan frankly.
Now that i have seen what is coming down the line, and how much it costs to do the job right, it feels like I wasted good money on plastic toys. I'll be pestering my Yammy rep for details on C7 integration and the exact Nuage launch date. Better give me a sweetheart deal on this - I'll be trading 9 CMC toys in...
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by Home Studio 87 »

Well Nuage is 100x the price of CMC ! like compare lemon/orange...
never had a problem with the CMC controller !
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by BriHar »

Home Studio 87 wrote:Well Nuage is 100x the price of CMC ! like compare lemon/orange...
never had a problem with the CMC controller !
Ditto!
garbagetruckdriver wrote:...firmware issues, loss of functionality during the C6<C7 upgrade, random reordering of fader packs, disappearing off the USB bus forcing a system restart...
These problems are past history!
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by G-string »

no functions have been taken away from the CH ,QC ,TP and they all work perfect with 6.5 and 7
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by Freddie H »

strat1962 wrote:Hi Guys, the title pretty much says it all. I'm thinking of buying the CMC six pack. At the moment I use a Behringer BCF with Cubase 7 and 6.5 on a PC. Any opinions from owners/users most appreciated. Thanks in advance.

I would absolutely recommend them! :D
They are great integration with Cubase 7.0.4, Nuendo and later. I have all 6 units. Its the new "smart" touch-interface controller of 21centery and the future. Instead of try to work against computer screens its meant to work with and compliment the computer screens of the modern digital studio setup.

I love them.


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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by lukasbrooklyn »

Freddie H wrote:
strat1962 wrote:Hi Guys, the title pretty much says it all. I'm thinking of buying the CMC six pack. At the moment I use a Behringer BCF with Cubase 7 and 6.5 on a PC. Any opinions from owners/users most appreciated. Thanks in advance.

I would absolutely recommend them! :D
They are great integration with Cubase 7.0.4, Nuendo and later. I have all 6 units. Its the new "smart" touch-interface controller of 21centery and the future. Instead of try to work against computer screens its meant to work with and compliment the computer screens of the modern digital studio setup.

I love them.


Best Regards
Freddie
i think the virtual faders on the CMCs (ie. not featuring an actual tangible fader) is kind of the 'worst of both worlds'; you have tablet devices these days where you can't feel the actual fader, but they're customizable. then there are control surfaces with actual physical faders.

here, we've got an uncustomizable single-purpose fader that cannot be felt under your figertips, and quite overpriced at that.
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by JMCecil »

There are specific reasons why I think these fall short of useful.

1) Although the integration is good, the functions are much more accessible via keyboard. Since the functions don't allow you to eliminate the keyboard, it is just a duplication of stuff that take up desk space.

2) The things that you would hope would be faster end up requiring the mouse. Even the AI knob requires you to use the mouse. So, let's see while you have moused over a control, you can already use the mouse to set the value, or you can move your hand and set the value using the knob, then move your hand back to the mouse. Because Cubase has become so click happy, it greatly reduces the advantage of the controllers.

3) Little or no access to the plugins. You still have to kick back to the keyboard and mouse to get at plugins and their interface

4) No fine lock. You constantly have to hold down the shift key for fine control. Hell, I'd rather have it have to be held down for course control. So either funky single hand control, or use 2 hands ... uhh yuck.

5) Too many duplicate functions. Since they are designed to be semi stand alone you have wasted buttons for functions you don't need once you have more than 1 controller.

6) The F functions are not consistent between the controllers. In other words it is very difficult to learn to quickly use Shift functions.

7) Quick controls are still global, so the QC doesn't really give you that much control over a channel with numerous plugins. If you don't use the built in EQ, it is pretty useless.

8) As someone already mentioned, the touch faders are fiddly and inaccurate. Good enough for rough mixing, but useless for real mixing.

9) Integration outside of Cubase/Wavelab is crappy. So for example, you can't even use them with something like Halion in stand alone mode, let alone other DAWs.

10) MIDI activity SPAM ...

There's more, especially on a per controller basis. However, there is vast potential here. But, this is how Steinberg does hardware. They never quite follow through.
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by BriHar »

JMCecil wrote:There are specific reasons why I think these fall short of useful.
1) Although the integration is good, the functions are much more accessible via keyboard. Since the functions don't allow you to eliminate the keyboard, it is just a duplication of stuff that take up desk space.
1) If this is true then the argument holds for all hardware contollers, so by this definition, the Mackie and other controllers are all pretty much a waste of space.
2) The things that you would hope would be faster end up requiring the mouse. Even the AI knob requires you to use the mouse. So, let's see while you have moused over a control, you can already use the mouse to set the value, or you can move your hand and set the value using the knob, then move your hand back to the mouse. Because Cubase has become so click happy, it greatly reduces the advantage of the controllers.
2) No the mouse is not eliminated with the AI knob, but it's about having a physical knob to control a virtual one. I suppose your argument holds true however, for someone with only one hand. I have more of a problem in that it hasn't been properly integrated with the new mixer, specifically with the Control room - but I'm confident they will address this at some point either with a cubase update or a firmware update accordingly.
3) Little or no access to the plugins. You still have to kick back to the keyboard and mouse to get at plugins and their interface.
3) This is true and again holds true for any other "affordable" controller interface.
4) No fine lock. You constantly have to hold down the shift key for fine control. Hell, I'd rather have it have to be held down for course control. So either funky single hand control, or use 2 hands ... uhh yuck.
4) If it were the reverse as you suggest, then we'd have real cause to complain! The way the CMCs contol the faders are just fine and having tested them side by side with real physical faders I have to say completely natural. The tops of real faders are contoured so they can be manipulated with a single finger without letting the finger slide off the knob. The CMC faders are smooth and precise enough with no jitter. The fine (shift) control rarely needs to be used in real work but when used, offer much better precision than most motorized faders - in fact to achieve similar precise controlling of a "real" fader usually entails using two fingers and resting the palm and/or fingers on the board to steady the hand - pressing the shift key on the CMC affords similar support.
5) Too many duplicate functions. Since they are designed to be semi stand alone you have wasted buttons for functions you don't need once you have more than 1 controller.
5) Apart from the FDs, There are actually very few duplicated controls and those that are duplicated make sense to have the particular function close at hand. The CH and QC both have Channel select controls These controls on the channel controller are a no brainer, they also make sense on the QC when fine adjusting EQ back and forth between tracks, the channel selectors are right at hand. The R and W commands are also duplicated on these two units, again because both can be used for automation, and particularly if these two units are not right beside each other.
The FD's Channel (not to be confused with the aforementioned channel selectors which have a different function) and Bank switches could be construed as OTT.
I take more of an issue that they neglected to include Listen and solo defeat (which I've added on to two of the F buttons) this would also have been nice to have on the FDs.
6) The F functions are not consistent between the controllers. In other words it is very difficult to learn to quickly use Shift functions.
6) The F functions can be custom programmed to your liking just like keycommands, and for someone who uses keycommands shouldn't be a problem remembering which functions have been programmed for each unit.
7) Quick controls are still global, so the QC doesn't really give you that much control over a channel with numerous plugins. If you don't use the built in EQ, it is pretty useless.
7) This is more an issue with programming the Quick controls in Cubase in general, not with the CMC-QC which executes them flawlessly. Personally, if I didn't use the built in EQs I never would have bought it - this is a plus point for the modularity of the design concept - only buy what you need.
8) As someone already mentioned, the touch faders are fiddly and inaccurate. Good enough for rough mixing, but useless for real mixing.
8) Already covered in 4 above. No less useless than an other HW fader controller.
9) Integration outside of Cubase/Wavelab is crappy. So for example, you can't even use them with something like Halion in stand alone mode, let alone other DAWs.
9) Agreed, but they were custom designed for use in Cubase, so if you use a different software other than or in addition to Cubase, and want something that will control them, then the CMCs are not the answer I totally agree. The original posting however refers to their usefulness with Cubase.
10) MIDI activity SPAM ...
10) I don't know why people get so stressed by this. Surely you have other gear in the studio with flashing indicators and such. If it bothers you, just turn it off in the transport, you'll still see relevant midi activity in the respective tracks

Regarding the earlier comment about the CMCs being "another set of hardware from Steinberg that was abandoned" would you care to share the announcement that this product has been discontinued (perhaps you were burned by the Houston).
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by JMCecil »

BriHar wrote: 1) If this is true then the argument holds for all hardware contollers, so by this definition, the Mackie and other controllers are all pretty much a waste of space.
No, with some of the other controllers, there is enough integration where the need for the mouse/keyboard become extremely secondary. Granted these are more expensive, but it shows a price point at which real functional value kicks in.
2) The things that you would hope would be faster end up requiring the mouse. Even the AI knob requires you to use the mouse. So, let's see while you have moused over a control, you can already use the mouse to set the value, or you can move your hand and set the value using the knob, then move your hand back to the mouse. Because Cubase has become so click happy, it greatly reduces the advantage of the controllers.
2) No the mouse is not eliminated with the AI knob, but it's about having a physical knob to control a virtual one. I suppose your argument holds true however, for someone with only one hand. I have more of a problem in that it hasn't been properly integrated with the new mixer, specifically with the Control room - but I'm confident they will address this at some point either with a cubase update or a firmware update accordingly.
I'm not sure what your point of one hand is? My mouse scroll wheel is just as accurate as the AI knob and my hand is already on it when pointing to the control. What point does the AI serve? And, yes it needs to be integrated into the MC environment. It wasn't connected to the Control Room in C6 either, so I wouldn't hold my breath for that update.

3) Little or no access to the plugins. You still have to kick back to the keyboard and mouse to get at plugins and their interface.
3) This is true and again holds true for any other "affordable" controller interface.
That's kind of my point. There is a price point below which these just take up desk space without providing any actual enhancement to work flow.
4) No fine lock. You constantly have to hold down the shift key for fine control. Hell, I'd rather have it have to be held down for course control. So either funky single hand control, or use 2 hands ... uhh yuck.
4) If it were the reverse as you suggest, then we'd have real cause to complain! The way the CMCs contol the faders are just fine and having tested them side by side with real physical faders I have to say completely natural. The tops of real faders are contoured so they can be manipulated with a single finger without letting the finger slide off the knob. The CMC faders are smooth and precise enough with no jitter. The fine (shift) control rarely needs to be used in real work but when used, offer much better precision than most motorized faders - in fact to achieve similar precise controlling of a "real" fader usually entails using two fingers and resting the palm and/or fingers on the board to steady the hand - pressing the shift key on the CMC affords similar support.
? what does fine lock have to do with faders? I'm talking about using the QC with Quick Controls. Course parameter control is useless.
8) As someone already mentioned, the touch faders are fiddly and inaccurate. Good enough for rough mixing, but useless for real mixing.
8) Already covered in 4 above. No less useless than an other HW fader controller.
I use several other fader controllers that work far better. Better to the point of making use of the mouse a bad experience. And, they make it obvious how bad the faders on the CMCs are. But again they are in that next price bracket.
9) Integration outside of Cubase/Wavelab is crappy. So for example, you can't even use them with something like Halion in stand alone mode, let alone other DAWs.
9) Agreed, but they were custom designed for use in Cubase, so if you use a different software other than or in addition to Cubase, and want something that will control them, then the CMCs are not the answer I totally agree. The original posting however refers to their usefulness with Cubase.
Well you can spend a few hundred on something that only works with Steinberg Hosts, or you can spend a few hundred and get one that works with all hosts and lots of stand alone apps ... including Steinberg Hosts.
10) MIDI activity SPAM ...
10) I don't know why people get so stressed by this. Surely you have other gear in the studio with flashing indicators and such. If it bothers you, just turn it off in the transport, you'll still see relevant midi activity in the respective tracks
Because it makes an indicator that used to be meaningful into a flashing light. Maybe you don't have much external MIDI controlled gear?
Regarding the earlier comment about the CMCs being "another set of hardware from Steinberg that was abandoned" would you care to share the announcement that this product has been discontinued (perhaps you were burned by the Houston).
Would you care to show me an update outside of just the minor fix for C8? The only other patch after release was ultra trivial.
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by Freddie H »

JMCecil wrote:
BriHar wrote: 1) If this is true then the argument holds for all hardware contollers, so by this definition, the Mackie and other controllers are all pretty much a waste of space.
No, with some of the other controllers, there is enough integration where the need for the mouse/keyboard become extremely secondary. Granted these are more expensive, but it shows a price point at which real functional value kicks in.


Hi there!

You seem little confused my friend and thinking in a old way of thinking..?

Steinberg has not tried to eliminate the mouse, the keyboard or the computer screens with these set of controllers. And that's the beauty and what I really like with these set of controllers. :)



Other hardware controls like SSL Nuclues. SSL AWS 948, AVID Artist Series are not as smart as these once. It comes from a guy has the pleasure to spend time with these large control surfaces in different large studios.
Workflow: End of the day, often even in in these studios with large SSL controllers/mixers the only thing you often end up using when you work & mix is pan, send and volume faders only. No one has the time or strength to go thru all menus and clicks on the hardware to control a single thing, that takes more or less one sec to control with the mouse anyway. So end of the day, the old large controllers are dumb for the modern computer environments.


Steinberg has think for the future and outside the box and added touch screen instead. We will never take the computer,the Screens or the mouse away from the digital studio environment. CMC is build to compliment functions with add of hardware controls example EQ and touch interface mixer -faders. Add direct buttons for functions like mute, solo, edit, open VST, automation R,W is geniuses.
The touch faders work better then hardware fades by the way. As some other has already point out you have more fine control with these touch faders with help of "shift" VS with any other large SSL mixer so that should not be any show stopper.

Also I have both in my studio. I use and have also 2x Yamaha 02R96VCM V2 digital mixers with Cubase 7.
I think many other manufactories like SSL and AVID will follow Steinberg and Yamaha NUAGE concept with their hardware controls in very near future.
Hope it help!


Best Regards
Freddie
-Highly developed spirits often encounter resistance from mediocre minds. -It really matters!

thehost250
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by thehost250 »

Hello everyone,
I'm new around here (just switched 1 week ago to C7), so I hope I'm not too late to this thread for a question. I didn't want to start a new thread on my 1st post so I figured I'd ask if anyone has switched from the CMC series to the Avid Artist Series or vice-versa. I desperately need a controller so I wanted to know if anyone has switched and their thoughts. For instance, what do you miss about one that the other had or important features that after switching you realize were really important.

In case someone asks, I do both production and mixing so I'm looking for something that strikes a balance between the two. I have numerous plugs to include Waves, UAD, etc. I realize there is no plug control on the UAD side of things but I've watched several videos of people controlling Waves plugs with V2 of the Artist Series. I've also seen mixed thoughts in terms of the Ai controlling 3rd party plugs so I'm not sure if they do or don't. Any help is appreciated in advance.

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JMCecil
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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by JMCecil »

Freddie H wrote:You seem little confused my friend and thinking in a old way of thinking..?[/size]
Steinberg has not tried to eliminate the mouse, the keyboard or the computer screens with these set of controllers.

I didn't see this post before ... but let me re-iterate ... their video actually says in two back to back sentences ..

"The AI eliminates the need for a mouse ..."
"Using the mouse just point ..."

All I've been saying is that the AI misses the mark. And, that the idea of eliminating the mouse by using the mouse is a farce. I'm getting some use out of the PD and TP, but don't find the rest very useful.

I've used the Arstist series and I'd take those hands down over the CMC. It's not even close. Of course there is a cost difference involved as well.
cpu:i7 6950x - RAM:128gb - OS:Win 10 - Interfaces:Lynx Aurora, Komplete Audio 6 - MIDI:Midisport 4x4, Quadra Thru
Steiny Suff: CMC:FD,CH,TP,QC,PD | Wavelab 9 | Cubase VST-32->9 | H5, GA4, HSO, Padshop Pro, Cubasis, iC Pro

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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by G-string »

thehost250 wrote: I do both production and mixing so I'm looking for something that strikes a balance between the two. I have numerous plugs to include Waves, UAD, etc. I realize there is no plug control on the UAD side of things but I've watched several videos of people controlling Waves plugs with V2 of the Artist Series. I've also seen mixed thoughts in terms of the Ai controlling 3rd party plugs so I'm not sure if they do or don't. Any help is appreciated in advance.
AUTOMAP for all your plugin needs and the CMC QC is brilliant as an EQ control and Quick controls and with just those two you have nearly everything covered , unless your worried about motorized faders but then the FD could be useful ;)
I7 3770k - win7 64 bit - C7.5.20 - WL8e - Halion 5 - Padshop pro - Cmc - Midex 8 - Uad - Rme FF/ADi8pro - Automap 4.7.3 b

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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by JMCecil »

G-string wrote: AUTOMAP for all your plugin needs
Automap where? QC needs automap badly.
cpu:i7 6950x - RAM:128gb - OS:Win 10 - Interfaces:Lynx Aurora, Komplete Audio 6 - MIDI:Midisport 4x4, Quadra Thru
Steiny Suff: CMC:FD,CH,TP,QC,PD | Wavelab 9 | Cubase VST-32->9 | H5, GA4, HSO, Padshop Pro, Cubasis, iC Pro

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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by G-string »

JMCecil wrote:
G-string wrote: AUTOMAP for all your plugin needs
Automap where? QC needs automap badly.
Novation I meant to say and then use the CMC for the rest
I7 3770k - win7 64 bit - C7.5.20 - WL8e - Halion 5 - Padshop pro - Cmc - Midex 8 - Uad - Rme FF/ADi8pro - Automap 4.7.3 b

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Re: CMC owners, would you recommend buying the CMC controllers?

Post by thehost250 »

Thanks for the replies so far. I saw another post somewhere recommending the Novation and CMC combo. I'll have to do some research on the Novation. I have several keyboards that can all handle fader and transport duties. I've got an Axiom Pro but it doesn't have as many knobs that could be assigned like the Novation. Will also check on how that would work since I have it already. Super thanks again.

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