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Quick Tip: How to Enable the Mod Wheel in FL Studio

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This post is part of a series called Manipulating MIDI: Setup, Sequencing and Secrets.
Using the Korg nanoKontrol 2 – Part 02
Quick Tip: Using Multiple MIDI Controllers in FL Studio 9

This tutorial will tackle one of the most frequently asked questions about FL Studio and show you how to enable the Mod Wheel for all virtual instruments, once and for all.


Step 1

Load a new, blank project in FL Studio.


Step 2

Load any third-party (not made by Image-Line) virtual instrument.


Step 3

In the Browser (F8), Open the folder Current Project > Generators > Fruity Wrapper (ThirdPartyVST). This will reveal a list of all automatable parameters in the instrument.


Step 4

Scroll way, way down until you see MIDI CC #1 (Modulation Wheel), right-click on it and select Link to Controller.


Step 5

The Remote control settings window should appear. Be sure to enable Omni so that the control will be automatically enabled for whatever particular instrument you happen to have selected in the future.

When you play notes on your keyboard, it doesnít send notes to all of the instruments at once, just to the one instrument you happen to have selected at the time, this is "Omni" behavior. The Pitch Bend wheel has "Omni" behavior.

We definitely want to the Mod Wheel to act like this! Enable Autodetect and move the physical Mod Wheel on your MIDI controller. The window will disappear and your Mod Wheel will be connected.


Step 6

Delete the third-party virtual instrument and save this project as a template (see how in the second step of this article (link here).

Close and reopen FL Studio, and then navigate to File > New From Template and select your template. FL Studio always loads with the template you last selected, so from now on the Mod Wheel will be enabled. Enjoy! Note that some Virtual Instruments automatically use the ModWheel for Vibrato, but some have it as a linkable control, and other plugins might not really use it all.


Why You Might Ignore This Tutorial

There is at least one really good reason to leave the Mod Wheel unassigned, and that is if you want to use the Mod Wheel as a re-assignable controller. This may be what you want to do if your MIDI controller doesnít have any knobs, because then you can use your Mod Wheel as a knob.

Even the most basic MIDI keyboard controllers will have a mod wheel, so by leaving the mod wheel to its default behavior, you can link, perform and record knob tweaks without shelling out a lot of cash for a feature-rich MIDI controller. Most studio musicians probably only need one or two knobs per recording take anyway.

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