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Topic: Extended Range

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  1. #1

    Extended Range

    Hi all,

    Is there any way to force extended range on the instruments that lack it? Like, for instance, the Eb Clarinet above G6, or the Bass Clarinet down to Bb1 (an astounding and very frustrating oversight!).

    I don't mind pitch-shifting as a stop-gap measure -- obviously the ideal solution is for the extended range to be sampled and added to the library -- but how to do this in Finale?

  2. #2

    Re: Extended Range

    Hi Thad,

    While I don't use Finale, I ran across this problem when doing Peter and the Wolf. The first instance won't apply to you but perhaps it might help someone else. The second might at least give you a starting point to find an answer. I did not solve these problems in a notation program, but in Digital Performer.

    1. P&tW was scored for a clarinet in A. I needed GPO's Bb clarinet to play down a 1/2 step further than it's range. I created a new midi track, assigned the bass clarinet to it and used it just for that one note. It worked very well in that situation. In fact it gave an extra little growl to that note which gave a lot of character to the line.

    2 I needed an extra 1/2 step higher on the French horn. Again I created a new midi track, selected a new instance of the same French horn instrument in the Kontakt player, and jacked the tune control knob in the player up 1 notch. That raised the pitch 1/2 step. Worked like a charm.

    You might already know these tricks, but if it doesn't help you perhaps it might give someone else something to ponder.

    Karl

  3. #3

    Re: Extended Range

    Hi Karl,

    Thanks for your reply. However, I'd like to avoid situations where I need to create new staves in Finale (which both of your suggestions would require). What I think would work would be if I could create an invisible expression that sends pitch bend data, but I've never had to do that in Finale before, so I have no idea how to start.

  4. #4

    Re: Extended Range

    Quote Originally Posted by Thad
    Hi Karl,

    Thanks for your reply. However, I'd like to avoid situations where I need to create new staves in Finale (which both of your suggestions would require). What I think would work would be if I could create an invisible expression that sends pitch bend data, but I've never had to do that in Finale before, so I have no idea how to start.
    Had a feeling this might be the case. Sorry, I'm not familiar with Finale at all.

    Best of luck finding a solution,

    Karl

  5. #5
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    Re: Extended Range

    I use the full version of Kontakt to extend the ranges.

    The instrument ranges are the natural ranges of most of the instruments. There may a couple cases as with the Eb clarinet that some of the highest notes weren't the best quality and so weren't used in the library.

    The Bass Clarinet goes down to the lowest note of the instrument recorded. I've never run into instance that I needed lower notes for this instrument. The lowest note on a bass clarinet is E (actual note on the instrument). Non-transposed would be a D. A bassoon goes down to a Bb.

  6. #6

    Re: Extended Range

    Quote Originally Posted by Haydn
    The lowest note on a bass clarinet is E (actual note on the instrument).
    I'm afraid you are mistaken. First, the lowest note on older bass clarinets is written Eb3 (not E3) -- i.e., concert Db2. But almost all bass clarinets made today go down to written C3 -- concert Bb1. The modern instrument with the extended range is now absolutely ubiquitous and many, many, many works call for this note, including some of mine.

    The bass clarinet recorded for GPO obviously was the modern kind with the extended range, since the lowest note in the sample set -- written Db3, concert B1 -- was clearly played on such an instrument. So it's absolutely maddening that the low concert Bb1 was not recorded or included since the player definitely had that note on his/her instrument. It's a stunning omission. It would be as if you had a bari sax sample that only went down to written Bb (all instruments made today have a low A key, and many scores call for it).

    [Wait, Gary, are you listening? The bari sax sample in the Jazz/Big Band library had better go down to low A!!! (I'm kidding, but kidding on the square. Seriously, the low A (concert C2) is essential.)]

    While it would obviously be better to include a sampled version of this low bass clarinet note, in the meanwhile, as a stop-gap measure, it would be really nice if there was a way to override the range limits set by GPO, and get the notes above and below the included notes by having the Kontakt Player pitch-shift the closest recorded note when that key is played. It seems like you can do that with the full version of Kontakt, but I'd like to be able to do that with the software I already bought.

    There may a couple cases as with the Eb clarinet that some of the highest notes weren't the best quality and so weren't used in the library.
    I would much rather have strained, out-of-tune altissimo notes available (on clarinet, flute, oboe, English horn, etc) than no note at all. After all, that's what those instruments sound like up there. When we write up there, it's because it's supposed to be strained -- that's the effect we want.

    If you want to have a "recommended range" and an "extended range' (perhaps indicated by an overlay of a different color, say red), that's fine, but the lack of altissimo woodwind notes is a real problem for me.

    And the lack of a low Bb1 concert on the bass clarinet isn't even an "extended range" issue -- it's a note in the natural range of the instrument you actually sampled, but you apparently forgot to include it in the library!

  7. #7

    Re: Extended Range

    Okay, I figured out a solution in Finale that may be of some interest to others:

    First, move the "written" note to a layer that is defined to not play back -- for instance, many people use Layer 4 as a "display only" layer, for cues and such.

    Next, in Layer 1, create the note you will use for playback purposes. This note needs to be one whole step above (for low notes) or below (for high notes) the desired note. This means the maximum range for GPO instruments can only be extended by one whole step in either direction.

    In my case, the note I wanted was a low concert Bb1 for bass clarinet. So the note I entered in Layer 1 was a concert C2 (a whole step above Bb1).

    Next, create an expression (call it, for instance, "whole step lower") and go to the Playback tab. Under "Type" choose "Pitchwheel." Under "Effect," choose "Set To Value" and in the box enter either "-8192" (to lower the pitch by a whole step) or "8191" (to raise the pitch by a whole step -- see page 40-38 of the Finale documentation for details).

    Now, hide the playback note (use the "O" key in Speedy Entry") so that only the note in Layer 4 is visible.

    Finally, create another expression (called, for example "reset pitchwheel") and in the font options, make it hidden. Go to the Playback tab, and again choose "Pitchwheel," "Set To Value" and enter "0". This resets the pitchwheel to its default position.

    You could also use this method to define quarter-tones accidentals (or other microtonal accidentals) for playback.

    Kind of a PITA, but it works.

  8. #8

    Re: Extended Range

    Quote Originally Posted by Thad
    Okay, I figured out a solution in Finale that may be of some interest to others:

    First, move the "written" note to a layer that is defined to not play back -- for instance, many people use Layer 4 as a "display only" layer, for cues and such.

    Next, in Layer 1, create the note you will use for playback purposes. This note needs to be one whole step above (for low notes) or below (for high notes) the desired note. This means the maximum range for GPO instruments can only be extended by one whole step in either direction.

    In my case, the note I wanted was a low concert Bb1 for bass clarinet. So the note I entered in Layer 1 was a concert C2 (a whole step above Bb1).

    Next, create an expression (call it, for instance, "whole step lower") and go to the Playback tab. Under "Type" choose "Pitchwheel." Under "Effect," choose "Set To Value" and in the box enter either "-8192" (to lower the pitch by a whole step) or "8191" (to raise the pitch by a whole step -- see page 40-38 of the Finale documentation for details).

    Now, hide the playback note (use the "O" key in Speedy Entry") so that only the note in Layer 4 is visible.

    Finally, create another expression (called, for example "reset pitchwheel") and in the font options, make it hidden. Go to the Playback tab, and again choose "Pitchwheel," "Set To Value" and enter "0". This resets the pitchwheel to its default position.

    You could also use this method to define quarter-tones accidentals (or other microtonal accidentals) for playback.

    Kind of a PITA, but it works.
    Of course the Bb I needed had to be trilled!


    Jerry

  9. #9

    Re: Extended Range

    Quote Originally Posted by Gerald Berg
    Of course the Bb I needed had to be trilled!
    Hey Jerry,

    Same principle applies, and it's actually not that much more difficult. Move the printing notes to layer 4, create the trill in Layer 1 (using the "Apply Human Playback" plugin, or just write it out) a whole step above what you need, apply the pitch bend expression at the beginning of the trill, and apply the pitch bend reset expression at the first note after the trill.

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