Here are a few useful things to know about VST(i) plugins made with Flowstone.
- Plugins are Windows only. If your DAW works fine in your OS version then so should the plugins.
- They are 32 bit only so a native 64 bit DAW will need a wrapper or bridge (Reaper x64 has an automatic bridge built-in).
- Most rotary knobs are operated by purely vertical mouse dragging.
- Many (but not all) knobs and controls have two levels of accuracy so, if you press shift and drag the mouse, the control will move more slowly, allowing greater accuracy of setting.
- Many (but not all) controls have a default position which is activated by Control+left-click.
- Graphic envelopes may have options which can be accessed by a single right-click.
- Some user-drawable graphs can be zeroed by a double right-click.
- Presets are saved and loaded in a text file format, either individually or as all-in-one (banks). These can be viewed and edited in Notepad for example and allow the possibility of creating custom presets with copy and paste and so on. The native DAW patch and bank system will also work and your plugin state should be saved correctly in the DAW’s project file. Authors generally use the text file system only.
- Text files are also used to save waveforms and graphs for some modules and this greatly enhances the flexibility.
Clicks when operating VSTi controls in Reaper:
For complex plugins when a parameter is changed (a knob is moved for example) Reaper will save the undo state and this will cause a short click about 0.5 sec after the mouse release.
On the plugin window at the top, press the + button. Select Compatibility settings and tick “Save minimal undo states”. This will stop the interruptions of the audio stream and still allow an undo and the state to be saved with the project file. This is not a Flowstone issue but applies to complex VST instruments running in Reaper.
Some controls don’t respond when Reaper isn’t Record-armed or playback not running:
Flowstone makes wide use of the Ruby programming language, not just for audio but also for many controls and displays. Ruby runs in sync with audio so any controls using Ruby internally in the plugin need the stream to be enabled to function. If this is an issue it’s easy to prevent this apparent non-responsive behaviour:
In Reaper go to Options|Preferences|Audio|Playback and tick the box for Run Fx when stopped.