Getting started with Gig Performer

Getting started with Gig Performer

If you have started your free trial of Gig Performer or you have just purchased it, this blog article is intended to provide you with various resources for getting started with Gig Performer as easily as possible.

Thank you for your interest in Gig Performer®, our premium audio plugin host for live performance and session musicians, created by musicians for musicians. Apart from creating an outstanding software application for live performance that lets you be the Artist, we recognize the value of supporting you along your journey to master Gig Performer and truly Own The Stage®.

The very first resource with which to get started is the Getting Started section of our user guide, where you can find basic setups for keyboardists, guitarists, vocalists, drummers, other musicians and FOH engineers. The user guide is always up-to-date to include the latest features and changes in Gig Performer updates and upgrades, along with all screenshots.

We’ll also highlight the Built-in templates chapter that explains templates, fully functional gig files so you can immediately start tweaking sounds and experiment with your setup.

Gig Performer built-in  templates, keyboards tab

We recommend that you review this live stream to learn how you can optimize your workflow using bundled templates. If you are a guitarist, this YouTube video with Igor Paspalj, the Guitar World’s 2020 Electric Guitarist of The Year, shows how to use and improve guitar templates.

The heart of all Gig Performer user interaction is through the Community forums where musicians can discuss their use cases, issues, explore new opportunities to use Gig Performer and many other topics. There is a great atmosphere in the Community and we’re proud to have such knowledgeable and kind members as part of our virtual family. Many Gig Performer users have explicitly commented on the value of the support our Community offers, such as in this thread:

That did it! Brilliant! Thanks everyone for your support. This community is 100% of the reason why I bought Gig Performer and why I will stick with it until the end. Truly invaluable.

We’ve compiled a list of all Gig Performer resources and how-to threads (now over than 150 useful guides) in this thread:

How to guides Gig Performer - excerpt

How-to topics range from beginner to advanced and are covered with relevant blog articles, YouTube videos, user manual pages, live streams, etc.

The section in the Community forums of which we’re very proud is the Gig and Rackspace files category where you can find a curated list of 100+ gig files, rackspaces and scriptlets. There is even the Getting Started gig file where basic guidelines are presented with various elements in Gig Performer:

Getting Started Gig File, Gig Performer

Make sure to check out this live stream that discusses how to take full advantage of the rackspaces available on the community forums.

As for the Gig Performer YouTube channel, to help you get started, make sure to check out our Foundations and Build it with Gig Performer series:

Foundation series:

Build it with Gig Performer:

Two other interesting videos are The First 10 Minutes In Gig Performer For Guitarists with Igor Paspalj and The First 10 Minutes In Gig Performer 4 For Keyboardists. Make sure to check out other playlists, videos and live streams where we interviewed many gigging musicians such as Andy Burton and Joel Brazy.

If you prefer written tutorials, there are numerous blog articles that address specific features and aspects of Gig Performer. We’ll highlight the blog How to change sounds and control plugins from your MIDI controller and How to create keyboard and velocity splits. (You can find these blog articles and many other how to tutorials in the Resources thread, already mentioned above)

If you are wondering how other artists are using Gig Performer and with what gear, make sure to check our Gig Performer in Action page. You can see many names such as Blue Weaver (Bee Gees), Chris Broderick (In Flames, Megadeth), Igor Paspalj (Electric Guitarist of the World 2020), Robert Martin (Frank Zappa), Trey Gun (King Crimson), … … … even special projects such as PianoArc.

Gig Performer and PianoArc, Circle keyboard

If you are wondering whether Gig Performer is the right choice for your use cases, don’t worry – Gig Performer provides you with the most flexible MIDI processing out there (more info in this blog) and can handle the most advanced setups. One of our users independently tested Gig Performer’s latency and jitter and the results are remarkable (click here to learn more). That’s also why Gig Performer is used in other markets such as broadcasting and live streaming. Click on this interesting article to learn more.

Note: Gig Performer videos are recorded in English. However, you can find many YouTube videos of Gig Performer in other languages made by Gig Performer enthusiasts. For example, Marcelo Gesualdi created many great Gig Performer tutorials in Portuguese (click here to check them out).

To see what’s new in the Gig Performer world, check out our newsletter; we keep an archive of all released newsletters here.

Share this article to help support Gig Performer and spread the word! 🙂

Own The Stage® with Gig Performer®

Nemanja Pudar

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Why use a computer with Gig Performer rather than hardware?
How music software has failed live performers and why Gig Performer is the solution?

Scaling Curves

Scaling curves allow you to control the shape of the output of a widget or convert an incoming note velocity to a new velocity. Various predefined curves are available and they can be tweaked as necessary. You can also just draw your own curve as well to achieve the effect you require.


MIDI File Player Plugin

You can load up to 128 MIDI song files in a single plugin instance. Switch from one song to another, mute tracks and/or change their channel numbers. Tempo can be controlled by individual songs or you can use the global tempo and tap tempo to control the BPM interactively.


Favorites and Presets

Create a sound by placing and interconnecting your desired plugins, such as a synth, some effects and perhaps a mixer. Select them all and then save the selection as a named favorite. The favorite will subsequently show up in all plugin insert menus, making it easy for you to recreate that configuration whenever you need it again. This feature is also very powerful for creating your needed sounds on your studio computer and then transferring them to your touring laptop.


Probabilistic Sound Designer

Parameters you select in an open plugin are captured into the Probabilistic Sound Designer dialog window. When you click Randomize, you're only adjusting those selected parameters. Each entry in the PSD dialog has a curve but unlike widgets where the curve controls scaling, in the PSD the curves are used to define the probability of particular values being selected. Make sure the filter cutoff never gets too slow so as to block all sound. Perhaps adjust the max range of the VCA attack parameter so that the sound doesn't have too much delay. Constrain the octave ranges of the oscillators, perhaps ensuring that 1/3rd of the time we select 8' and 2/3rds of the time we select 4'. The possibilities are endless.


More Widgets

Numerous new widgets are included in Gig Performer - a new sustain pedal, plastic knobs, drum pads and more colored sliders. Shapes can be colored with different borders and fill colors and morphed from rectangular to circular. Your creativity is now the limit to creating fabulous front panels in Gig Performer.


MIDI Message Helper

Select MIDI devices by name. Choose the MIDI message type and adjust the appropriate parameters for the specific type



Layout management

Gig Performer supports arbitrary resizing. Layout your widgets the way you want - resize the main window and the widgets will grow or shrink as necessary to maintain the same interrelationships. No matter what size screen you have, your front panels will still be neat and usable.


Undo Support

If you move your widgets around and/or resize them, or even delete them by mistake, the Undo facility will correct your mistake. Minor moves to a widget by mistake will no longer spoil your design


Plugin Channel Count

Some plugins support a large number of outputs and they depend on the traditional channel strip to control how many ports should be available.   When you only need a stereo pair, it is convenient not to have a large horizontal block. In Gig Performer, the number of available ports  is controlled by the channel count override, which can be applied to individual plugins and will be remembered when the gigfile is reloaded or if the plugin is saved as a favorite.


Input muting and output fading

Rather than a single audio length tail, Gig Performer 4 gives you the ability to control input muting and output fading separately. Input muting controls how much time it takes for audio input to be silenced when you leave the rackspace. Output fading controls how much time will be taken for audio to fade out when you leave the rackspace.


Faster Plugin Finder

Instead of searching through menus of perhaps hundreds of plugins (you know who you are!), the Quick Plugin Finder makes it easy to find the plugin you need by simply typing partial strings. For example, as shown here, to find the Modartt Pianoteq 7 plugins, it's enough to type pia mod 7 (in any order, by the way)  to restrict the list of available plugins to those matching your query. The Quick Plugin Finder also knows about manufacturers, presets and favorites.



Touch Friendly Input

Any entry field can be changed by either dragging your mouse (or finger) up or down, or by using the large popup touchpad where you can just tap on the squares to enter a value. The large popup keypad also does validation so you can't enter an invalid value. You can also just tap the BPM field to pop up a larger view where you can quickly change tempo, tranpose, trigger Tap Tempo and enable Ableton Link, the last allowing you to synchronize Gig Performer with any other application that also supports Ableton Link.


New Tuner Display

The tuner view makes it easy for guitarists to quickly check and adjust their tuning. You can toggle into the tuner view from any other view and toggle right back as soon as you're done. All output will be silenced automatically while you're in tuning mode. You can adjust the concert reference pitch from its default of 440 Hz to suit your own needs. The tuner view fills the entire screen so you can easily see it from a distance.