I have made huge rack systems with tons of hardware in Parallel processing and pretty much did it in that manner as, but with rack units and all. Without a centralized host like GP3, it was incredibly difficult to control all of the units the way I wanted to. For instance, few of those hardware pieces had dedicated VST controllers, so controlling them would have required too much extra hardware. I needed to streamline everything into an HQ center like GP3 and have a single button change everything.
My rack was controlling over 20 hardware units, and when you run a system that complex, things go wrong at many points. Midi messages not going through (sending 20 program changes to 20 different units can sometimes be a little glitchy especially if you use midi thru, even with a short 3 unit daisy chain), a faulty cable in the rack taking hours to locate, no EQ on every single component because there was not enough EQ channels to go around, non recallable units like tube preamps etc., and not having infinite midi modulation capabilities on every single parameter. This last reason was why I needed GP3. Anything can control anything.
The benefits of my rack system was, there was no DSP limit to be under, what you got works within its set boundaries, but I was limited by 2 things, complex creativity, and speed. It is so fast to work in GP3. With my rack system, I constantly have to flip pages on a tiny LCD screen between units, and the sound quality degradation with long serial chains which I was using, not to mention the multiple AD/DA cycles when you go In and Out of multiple FX Processors. And also, the rack systems are hardwired in a specific path, there is no free rearranging, unless of course you own a Switchblade switcher, but it still is a slow process that needs a PC screen tied to a bunch of rack equipment already.
The speed of GP3 allows for creative focus, and let me stop worrying about tone in the mix path. What I mean by that is the Tracking signal chain and the Mixing signal chain can both be united and recalled easily with GP3. All the plugins settings in the DAW session can be copied over to GP3, giving you the same neat tone you’ve crafted during mixing. I’ve always wanted that finished polished tone to play through, like preamp emulations, saturation and tape plugins, complex send and returns, compression, etc.
Going back to this Master Slave idea, everything would still be visible from one single window, all control on the same screen. We wouldn’t have to stare at a different LCD screen, and only need to change the one preset change on the GP3 with alter the whole ecosystem. Yes, latency in a serial path would be higher, however with more DSP, we would be able to raise the Sample Rate, and lower the buffer size, resulting in a higher sound quality (especially for distortion algorithms without oversampling) at practically the same latency.
We can have dedicated slave machines as DSP accelerators, ones specifically assigned for loading huge Kontakt libraries, ones to load only synths, and one for your darn Bass player to play through on your same machine, maybe a drummer too if he has an electronic kit.
I layer a lot of my guitars with synths, and sample libraries. That takes tremendous processing power which has been unable to withstand my passionate complex wirings.
And one more thing, if the entire Master Slave ecosystem was controlled from the same GP3 window, you can have a very important thing that a completely parallel process would lack, and that is Delay Compensation. All signals end up at a single stereo output at the same time.
This is a dream workflow, with boundless creative potential.