So what is Gig Performer anyway?
So what is Gig Performer anyway?
Gig Performer™ is an application to allow you to use your computer and an audio interface for live music performance. Whether you’re part of a band or a solo artist you can use Gig Performer™ to manage all the sounds and/or effects processing you need when you’re on stage.
Why did you build it?
Does Gig Performer come with any plugins?
Gig Performer comes with some internal plugins for managing Midi Input, Midi Output, an audio file player and some basic mixing. However, it does not include any synths or effects plugins. There are already a tremendous number of high-quality commercial and free plugins available, and most users already have plugins with which they like to work. We saw no reason to reinvent the wheel and instead we have focused on making Gig Performer be the best live performance plugin host possible.
On what platforms does Gig Performer run?
Gig Performer™ is designed to run on both OS X and MS Windows so the user can work in whichever environment is most familiar and comfortable.
How does licensing work?
As of version 3.6, Gig Performer™ can be activated simultaneously on up to three computers with the same OS. So buying a Mac license lets you run Gig Performer™ on three Macs simultaneously and buying a Windows license lets you run Gig Performer™ on three Windows PCs simultaneously. This gives you the ability to use Gig Performer on a machine in studio to create your gigs and allows you to carry two laptops with you on tours, one for backup in case of emergencies.
We also offer a bundle consisting of both a Mac and Windows license, which of course lets you run Gig Performer™ on up to three Mac and up to three PCs.
If you need to run Gig Performer™ on a fourth machine, you can deactivate your license on one of your other machines and then reactivate it on the fourth machine.
Can I use the same gig file on both a Mac and a Windows PC?
Sure – our “gig” files can be opened on either platform and as long as compatible plugins exist on both platforms, you will be able to use, edit, save and transfer gigs between the two platforms.
This mechanism also works even if not all plugins are present on one of the systems. GP has a built in “Chameleon” plugin that will “pretend” to be the missing plugin, obviously not producing any sound, but will turn into a real plugin on a system where the plugin does exist. This allows you to edit gig files even when some plugins are missing, although of course you cannot edit the missing plugins.
Where can I find plugins if I don’t already have my own collection?
A quick internet search will turn up numerous sites on which you can find and download many free VST and AU (Mac only) synth and effect plugins.
What is a Rack Space?
A Rack Space is a container for a collection of plugins (in the back) wired together any way you like along with a collection of panels (in the front) to control those plugin parameters in real time using widgets (knobs, sliders, buttons and so forth). A single rack space could represent all the elements you need for a song or just parts of a song. You can switch from one rack space to another instantaneously with no interruption in sound, allowing seamless transitions from one part of a song to another, even in the middle of a bar.
What is a Variation?
Variations allow you to instantly change the front panel settings of a rackspace. For example, if you have a single rack containing a collection of plugin effects such as phaser, flanger, chorus and echo, then different variations would allow you to instantly change multiple parameters so you can switch from just phaser to phaser+flanger+chorus or change the phaser rate, flanger depth and chorus width in one go, rather than having to press multiple pedals and/or adjust multiple dials. Many songs use the same plugins connected together in the same way but with slightly different parameters so variations allow you to reuse the same plugins without needing more memory to hold them.
What is a Panel?
A Panel is a container for “Macros” or “Smart Control” in other products, but a Panel in Gig Performer™ is far more flexible. It essentially enables you to bundle a collection of smart controls in individual panels of a rack space.
What about songs and setlists?
You can organize rackspaces and variations into songs suitable for use in a session or show. Each song consists of one or more song parts and each song part refers to a specific rackspace/variation combination. Widgets values in rackspaces can be temporarily overridden by song parts. In this way, you can easily reuse your rackspaces for different songs and/or song parts, each one appropriately tweaked as required.
What is the Rig Manager?
The Rig Manager is used to manage a separation of your hardware (keyboards, MIDI controllers, MIDI pedal boards etc) and your rackspace design. This allows you to quickly replace one physical device with another, for example, when you are on tour and your keyboards are backlined. Instead of having to learn how to program or configure keyboards or controllers with which you are not familiar, you can train Gig Performer very quickly to recognize what MIDI events they generate to allow you to use different “rigs” at different shows.
Read more about the Rig Manager here.
Is the latency better than common DAWs like Reaper and Ableton? Is there a way to measure that?
With apologies, this question, although asked often, is somewhat meaningless.
The latency of any system is a function of the latency of the audio interface plus the latency implied by the sample buffer size divided by the sample rate specified in the application (see table below). So if you set the sample rate of ANY application to 44,100Hz (say) and the buffer size to 128 (say), that application will add 2.90 ms latency.
It doesn’t matter whether one is running a toy computer or the fastest supercomputer in the world!
Perhaps a better question to ask is, “Can I get up on stage, perform in real-time and do a 3 hour show, switching from one set of sounds to another on the fly, turning on/off or adjusting effects instantly and not get stressed out?”
THAT (among MANY other things) is what Gig Performer brings to the table.
Gig Performer does have a tool to let you measure the actual (as opposed to the reported) latency of your audio interface.
I know people are very interested in such things but I worry that focusing on such things just gets in the way of actually playing. Wearing my musician’s hat, my own position is, if I can play and not notice any delay or softness, that’s all that matters.
What is the min Windows requirements insofar as the processor speed is concerned?
No definitive answer to that one. Any modern machine running Windows 7 or newer should be fine but certain plugins may have more stringent requirements. If you use a lot of sample-based plugins, it helps to have more RAM but 8Gb would be a reasonable minimum.