DISTRHO - Cardinal Mini

Hi everyone, starting this topic to discuss a plugin I am pushing to beta - Cardinal Mini.
It is very much the same as main Cardinal DISTRHO - Cardinal but with only a few selected modules and integrated/embed GUI directly on the MOD web interface.

Still to be considered beta, specially since it is the 2nd plugin using web-assembly for the GUI that gets pushed to the plugin store (first one being Wolf Shaper).

By only having a few selected modules, in theory things will be more stable as there are only a few modules to pick from and so only a few that need to work well.

There are quite a few VCV Rack and Cardinal tutorials out there to explain how this works, but in short:

  • use “Host Audio”, “Host MIDI” and “Host CV” to get data from the host (in our case, the side cables on the pedalboard)
  • right-click opens the module selector
  • middle click on the background rack moves it around
  • click and drag a jack IO inside Cardinal to create connections
  • you can fullscreen the Cardinal modgui using “View → Fullscreen” menu action, or F11 if Cardinal is in focus (only works in some browsers)
  • not possible to copy&pate or download patches from this plugin version yet

I have added 2 example synth patches accessible through “File → Open Demo / …” menu action.

General testing and feedback is very much welcome!
I hope to get this one to stable at some point, so knowing how bad/good it works for you is essential, thanks!

PS: the very same plugin is possible to run online at https://minicardinal.kx.studio/ if you want to experiment and play around with it without a MOD unit.


An example pedalboard to try Moogy - MOD Audio

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Should this use the included Moogy patch? because here it just opens the default patch inside Cardinal Mini.

It should yes… so something is not right.
I think the patch is being loaded properly (as the CPU load is higher than the default patch), it is just the GUI not being updated.

I hear the default patch, not your Moogy patch. When I switch to that it sounds … moogy :slight_smile:

Updated the patch, now works!

There seems to be an issue encoding the json file given to the host when a text editor module is inside the Cardinal patch. The newlines trigger some json decode error, will investigate more later.
For now we can just avoid having notes/text inside Cardinal :person_shrugging:


Thank you FalkTX! One of my fav plugins just got better! Just the simple fact of being able to play Plaits with MPE using my Linnstrument thorugh my MDX or Dwarf
almost itself justifies the price of the whole pedal. And that`s not even scratching the surface of what is possible!!!


Does it require updating to 1.13 for this to work?

My DuoX is still on the latest release of 1.12 and Cardinal Mini GUI is showing only a text “Bulk Memory Operations unsupported” on a black background.


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No :slight_smile:
On 1.13 the GUI will load faster, and be cleaned up after removal properly, but it still mostly works on 1.12

The “Bulk Memory Operations unsupported” error means your browser only partially supports web assembly, it is unlikely for the GUI to work correctly so it errors out instead of showing broken graphics.

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Huh, I thought that the wasm stuff only worked on 1.13?

I considered restricting it, but since it is a beta that needs general feedback more than anything, best to try and have it available for the most people possible.
The performance difference between building with the older vs newer toolchain was not that much different that makes >=1.13 restriction worthwhile.

I think by the time this mini variant is considered stable and tested, we will have 1.13.1 or even 1.13.2 and most people will have updated by then.


Forgot to say, I have https://minicardinal.kx.studio/ setup with the same exact codebase as the one running in MOD, but audio and MIDI happens through the browser.
Both Firefox and Chrome (plus Edge and others based on it) now support WebMIDI, use “Engine” → “Enable MIDI” to activate. If you plug new devices just trigger the same menu again.

You can use it to play around with synth making, it is more approachable vs the full Cardinal as only a tiny set of modules are included.