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I want to build a keyboard patch in FL Studio. As in a single 'instrument' where the keyboard is split in several zones, to each of which corresponds a stack of simpler instruments. A simple example would be electric bass + synth bass in the left part and a fat composite lead synth in the right.

I am aware of Layer, however it bugs me that a Layer cannot control other Layers, also don't know how to split keyboard into zones with layer.

One more thing I'd like is playing octaves while playing only single notes on my MIDI keyboard, for example on piano or strings sound. One way to accomplish this is to load two instances of the instrument, transpose one of them an octave up/down and control them through a Layer. However this is inelegant and may be punishing performance-wise with resource-heavy synths.

What I'd like in this regard is basically some kind of a MIDI signal filter, which takes some notes on input and outputs those same notes plus also them, but transposed an octave up/down. This way, one instrument instance would suffice.

Combining all these things should make possible some quite nice keyboard patches, made from several independent plugins for a rich sound.

How do I do this?

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Look into Patcher. It lets you set up more complex configurations of other plugins and combine them into other plugins.

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Firstly, you need to open an instance of "MIDI out" which you will directly control with your keyboard. You can set this to any (unused) port, e.g. Port 1.

Then, you will need to open an instance of Patcher and unhide the "events" output for Port 1 (or whatever port you chose). This is found by right-clicking the "from FL studio" icon.

Inside Patcher, open an instance of "VFX Keyboard Splitter" to do the splitting part. You can create up to 16 zones in here, which can overlap in any way you want (or even "fade in" to each other!) You will need to unhide the output corresponding to each zone that you are using, by right-clicking the VFX Keyboard Splitter plugin, much like how you unhid Port 1 in Patcher.

These outputs (zone 1, zone 2, etc.) can be routed to any generator plugins in Patcher. Layering is achieved by routing one zone to several generators. And lastly, make sure you're sending the audio output from each generator to "To FL Studio".

Lastly, octave doubling (or even playing full chords with a single key) can be done with the "VFX Key Mapper" plugin. The routing for this is similar to VFX Keyboard Splitter, but it only has one output.

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