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Joined: Dec 2020
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I'm not a professional audio tech, but I want to record my performances on my Yamaha P515 using a VST. I want to record using Audacity installed on my tablet PC (which also houses my VST library with my P515 hooked in as a controller. Everything works great if I'm just using the onboard voices on the P515. But to use my VST, I have to switch LOCAL CONTROL to OFF on the MIDI section of the P515 system settings. But once I do that, Audacity no longer receives a signal and does not record my performance. Is there anyone out there who knows what settings if any I can use so I can do this? Computer is hooked to P515 with a midi to usb c (thunderbolt 4) connector

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Let me say first, I'm not a fan of recording VSTis with Audacity, not even sure it's possible. You can record as MIDI in a DAW like Reaper, and then run that MIDI file through any VST instrument you have, afterwards. There are some other DAWs or VSTi hosts, but I'm not familiar with any of them, like the Cantabile something, which many recommend.

It has it's advantages to record as MIDI first, because you can choose to render the MIDI file with any VST instrument of your choice, and even multiple times, each time with a different VST instrument. If you don't like doing it this way, I can't help you, but maybe somebody else can.

As a side note, some VST instruments allow you to record directly in their own interfaces, Pianoteq being the first that comes to (my) mind, but the same goes for the Garritan CFX. You didn't say which VST instruments you want to use, so if it's neither of these two, you may not be able to record them directly this way.


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Cantabile Solo and Cantabile Performer allow very easy recording of audio and MIDI with any VSTi.
The free Cantabile Lite does not support this feature.

Last edited by VladK; 04/30/22 07:24 PM.

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ok thank you both for your suggestions, I'll take a look at all methods/programs I can - not particularly married to Audacity - it's just the first one I got since it was free.

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What you should is record the P515's Midi output, and then "render" that Midi file with a VST.

The result of "rendering" is a .WAV file -- digitized audio -- which you can import into Audacity and edit as you please.

Pianoteq makes that easy. Any VST should let you do it, one way or another.


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so it turned out I was confusing the "local control" with the "audio loopback" functions on my P515 which are two different switches. I turned audio loopback to "on" and solved the issue.

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See https://wiki.audacityteam.org/wiki/Midi

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Audacity cannot record MIDI input, only import and play MIDI files.

Then you can’t record your MIDI stream and feed it to your VST.

You should try the different proposed programs (Cantabile Solo, Reaper…)


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I'm probably misunderstanding something, and even many things, but the OP says the issue is solved. I take it that he can indeed record the audio output of his VST instrument(s) into Audacity.

As someone who doesn't enjoy the luxury of having a built-in audio interface in my digital piano, and using an external Focusrite 2i4, I'm curious as to how the audio interface of the P515 works. I have been considering the P515 as an option for a DP.

Can the P515 work out the audio from the VSTi and route it via LINE OUT to Audacity the same way, it does so for the built-in piano voices? Does it maybe have it's own mini DAW in the internal memory of the P515?


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Yes the P515 has a built in audio interface. There are regular midi in/out ports and there is also a two way usb to midi port. I believe it is a type b usb. By having audio loopback set to “on” it allows sounds to be sent back to the pc simultaneously

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Originally Posted by TheodorN
Can the P515 work out the audio from the VSTi and route it via LINE OUT to Audacity the same way, it does so for the built-in piano voices? Does it maybe have it's own mini DAW in the internal memory of the P515?

Yes. And maybe I am misunderstanding something also, but you can always record the incoming audio in the piano itself and then use the file as you please.
Not sure of what a mini DAW would be, but the P515 has a sixteen track recorder. A mini sequencer if you like


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That's what I would prefer, mydb, record to the piano's memory, and then copy the file(s) to my PC, or directly to a USB stick if that's possible. Though it's cool to be able to record straight to Audacity, even when using VSTis. Thanks for the replies.

Last edited by TheodorN; 05/01/22 09:09 PM.

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Yes, you can record to a USB stick, or save the files to one, or convert midi to audio


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True. The P-515 can store up to 250 user recordings (recorded in midi format). Not sure why the max is just 250 though. But I guess that 250 is adequate - maybe. Can always pull the files out using their software app.


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