VST GUI on one PC, DSP on another

I have made a small but important step. In an unpublished experimental version of NetVST, I have added support for parameter automation and patch-selection to the protocol.

I have also created a new "NetWrapper" VST plugin, which "wraps" another selected plugin. That is, it acts as a simple VST host, loads the selected plugin and then passes most communications through to it. In this way, the actual VST host sees the NetWrapper instance as though it were the wrapped instance, and is able to open its GUI. MIDI and audio data, parameter changes, and patch selections are streamed across the network to another instance of the wrapped plugin.

By using two complete plugin instances, on two computers, we can thus run the plugin GUI on one machine (e.g. in a DAW host), and the DSP on the other.

There is a very short demo video on YouTube.

Why is this important? In all previous NetVST work, a second (third, etc.) PC used to run plugins must be directly accessible to the user of the first PC, which at the very least, makes for a cluttered desk. This new approach means that, in principle, the DSP computer need not even be in the same room. Indeed, it need not even have a screen at all.

This is an important step toward the NetVST Project vision of putting DSP code onto "headless" network servers.