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Topic: Horn Ens Question

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  1. #1

    Wink Horn Ens Question

    I wonder why the solo horns are single note while the ensemble horns are multiple note? I find it much easier to build ensembles with the single note, solo horns - but using the horn ens, I end up doing a lot of editing the ends of held over notes. Just curious - why are the horns programed this way?

  2. #2

    Re: Horn Ens Question

    Johneecatt,

    Primarily to allow divisi playing in the inner parts. It also lets the user try out simple chord voicings with a single instrument (the polyphony default is usually "6" for the Ens instruments).

    Having said that, I always recommend that if the user intends to actually construct fully separate parts for each player (with specific articulations) that the polyphony be reduced to “1” for each of the Ens instruments. The user can then treat them as solo instruments. This is also the only way the tongue/slur function of the sustain pedal will work properly for the Ens instruments. The assigned polyphony number in the player can be scrolled with the mouse cursor to the value desired.

    Tom

  3. #3

    Re: Horn Ens Question

    Hmmm. That's interesting. This is the first time I've heard this. I assume this would apply to all ensemble instruments? Well, I'll be. Does this go for the update as well Tom?

  4. #4

    Re: Horn Ens Question

    I've so far rarely use the ensemble patches, unless I'm sure there will be several horns playing the same note at the same time. My usual setup has been:

    For 2 horns; 1st horn = horn2, 2nd horn = horn1 (yes, I swap 'em. I like this texture better)

    For 3 horns; same, but add another instance of horn2 to play 3rd horn

    For 4 horns; horn2, horn2, horn1, horn1

    The last example is that way because traditionally, the first and third horns are high, and second and fourth are low. There is more likely a doubling of 1+3 and 2+4, and I don't get the phasing issue.

    That being said, I've recently just started to use this for the quartet:
    horn2 solo, ens2, horn1 solo, ens1. That way, I don't have to even think about the phasing issue at all. In this case, I always set polyphony to 1 for each instrument. Higher polyphony is reserved only for "doodling" in my studio.
    - Jamie Kowalski

    All Hands Music - Kowalski on the web
    The Ear Is Always Correct - Writings on composition

  5. #5

    Re: Horn Ens Question

    Skysaw,

    Your combinations will work well if you encounter no situations where all horns are playing unison. Your 3 and 4 horn examples are not recommended if any full section unisons are present. In that case, Horn 1 Solo cannot be used with any of its derived Ens instruments and Horn 2 Solo cannot be used with any of its derived Ens instruments. Here are a couple of possibilities (using your preferences) that should not cause phasing problems during full section unisons:

    3 horns: 1st horn = French horn 2 Solo, 2nd horn = French horn 1 Ens1, 3rd horn = French horn 1 Ens2 (French horn 1 Solo cannot be combined with these).

    4 horns: 1st horn = French horn 2 Solo, 2nd horn = French horn 1 Ens1, 3rd horn = French horn 1 Ens2, 4th horn = French horn 1 Ens3 (again, French horn 1 Solo cannot be combined with these).

    The above examples are combinations that share no common samples.

    Tom

  6. #6

    Re: Horn Ens Question

    Joseph,

    Yes, this applies to all ensemble instruments and will continue to apply to the update.

    Tom

  7. #7

    Re: Horn Ens Question

    Thanks for the tip, Tom. I hadn't needed an a4 yet, but will run across one eventually!
    - Jamie Kowalski

    All Hands Music - Kowalski on the web
    The Ear Is Always Correct - Writings on composition

  8. #8

    Re: Horn Ens Question

    Thanks a lot, Tom. This is really very helpful.

    ---You guys are goood.

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