How to use multiple instances in Gig Performer 4

How to use multiple instances in Gig Performer 4

In this article you will learn how to easily use more than one instance in Gig Performer.

What is multi-instance support?

Multi-instance support means that you can run an application multiple times on the same computer, with each such “instance” operating independently.

What is multi-instance support in Gig Performer?

While most audio plugin hosts have little or no support for multiple instances, Gig Performer fully supports running multiple instances both on macOS and Windows. 

Multi instance support in Gig Performer, audio plugin host for live performance

This has many different practical applications. Here are some examples:

  • If you play two different instruments on your gig, say guitar and Eigenharp, you can separately control what your Eigenharp plays and what your guitar plays.
  • If you happen to be a vocalist and say keys or guitar player, you can control your vocal effects separately, in another instance.
  • In a band situation, a laptop could be shared and each band member could have their own instance to control their own instrument sounds without impacting what other band members are doing. They could even use separate MIDI controllers or pedal-boards to do so.

See more use cases or share your use case in this Community thread.

How to create an instance in Gig Performer 4

In this example, we’ll create two instances, one for the guitarist and one for the vocalist.

Creating another instance of Gig Performer is easy. Click on the File menu and then select on the Create New Instance… menu item:

Creating a new instance in Gig Performer, audio plugin host for live performance

Afterward, type in a name, e.g. Guitar, and you are all set:

New guitar instance in Gig Performer, audio plugin host for live performance

Note that the new instance will include the name you typed in parenthesis, in this case “(Guitar)”, as indicated in the screenshot above.

Following the previous steps, create one more instance and name it “Vocals”.

Note: All instance management operations are done through the File menu; you can create new instances, open existing instances or delete existing instances.

How to easily access instances in Gig Performer on Windows

You open your instances through the File menu and the Open Existing Instance submenu in the main Gig Performer application. Note: accessing an instance from another Gig Performer instance is not supported. This means that if you want to access your instance through the menus, you first need to start Gig Performer and then open the desired instance.

There is another way to access instances quicker and easier in Windows. We can simply copy the Gig Performer shortcut and then provide it with the additional argument in=name_of_an_instance to open the desired instance:

Access instances via shortcuts in Gig Performer

Simply copy the Gig Performer 4 shortcut, paste it two times, and rename new shortcuts to “GP – Guitar” and “GP-Vocals”. Afterward, right click on a shortcut and then select Properties. Note the Target field and then append -in=Guitar and -in=Vocals to have shortcuts open the Guitar and the Vocals instance respectively (refer to the screenshot above).

Using this method, just double-click on the desired shortcut to open the corresponding instance. Note that you don’t need to start the main Gig Performer application to start an instance.

Visit this post to learn how to automate the startup of your instances. 

How to easily access instances in Gig Performer on macOS

On macOS you cannot modify aliases to append arguments to applications. We will use a different approach than on Windows, but the functionality will be the same – we’ll have two items on the Desktop that we can double-click and open the desired instances.

Click on the Launchpad and then type in script in the search field:

Select the ScriptEditor from the Launchpad in macOS Monterey

Click on the Script Editor. Copy this line for the Vocals instance and paste it into the editor:

do shell script “\”/Applications/\” -in=Vocals &>/dev/null &”

AppleScript code for the vocals instance in Gig Performer

Save the script; in the dialog select “Desktop” in the Where combo box and make sure to select “Application” as the File Format (as indicated in the screenshot below):

AppleScript Save as Application, Gig Performer instance

Afterward, click on the Save button.

Repeat the same procedure for the Guitar instance, just use this line:

do shell script “\”/Applications/\” -in=Guitar &>/dev/null &”

Note that you have two icons on the Desktop; double-clicking each of them will start the corresponding Gig Performer instance. One last step is to allow access to the microphone; click on the OK button:

Gig Performer would like to access microphone

For more tips on instances on macOS, make sure to visit this link.

Other useful notes

The number of instances you will be able to successfully have open at any one time is dependent upon your system’s RAM and CPU resources. Each instance can access entirely different plugins and MIDI In blocks. Separate instances can also access different audio interfaces.

Do not open the same instance twice as both opened instances will respond to the same MIDI and OSC commands and changing any settings in one of the instances will change it for both, but only one will get the change immediately.

Before deleting an instance from the File menu, make sure to first close that instance or the delete operation will fail.

If you want to use two or more instances with the same audio interface, make sure that you set the sample rate to the same value in Audio Options otherwise one of the instances will have be slightly out of tune.

Some Windows ASIO drivers still allow only one application to use the audio interface at a time; these are known as single-client drivers. Multi-client audio drivers started coming out years ago, but there are still many single-client drivers in place. Two instances of Gig Performer count as two applications, which is a problem when running on a single-client driver. Read this blog article to find out how to run multiple instances of Gig Performer with a single-client ASIO driver on Windows.

There are also many advanced usages: for example, you can use a MIDI In plugin to send program change messages from one instance to another so that one instance can be used to change the rackspace in another instance.

All presented guidelines are tested on Windows 11 and macOS Monterey. 

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

Own The Stage® with Gig Performer®

Nemanja Pudar

Related topics:
How to use a separate Gig Performer instance as your effects box 
Clever ways to optimize your plugin usage


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.