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Topic: No more excuses!

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  1. #1
    Senior Member BlueMax's Avatar
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    No more excuses!

    No more procrastination either! I finally bit the bullet and pulled out the credit card and purchased the cheapest pair of 512MB DDR2 memory I could find ($110 Canadian and free shipping, lifetime warranty.)

    Finally..... finally, after one YEAR of owning the software, I'll be able to use GPO pretty well. The only thing I'm lacking now is a true ASIO sound card (I can live with 30-40ms lag for now) and a better MIDI controller. The one I have has a lever for modulation (instead of a wheel) which snaps back to the "zero" position.... due to the silly way (IMHO) Kontact uses modulation for volume instead of volume for volume, audio drops to ZERO every time I touch the stupid thing - very frustrating.

    But I now meet the minimum requirements and my last excuse is removed. Time to compose, folks. Expect some demos soon - even if it starts with "Disco Bagpipes Reville"
    "AAAAUUUUGGHHHHHHH!!!!!!" -- Charlie Brown

  2. #2

    Re: No more excuses!

    Your Conan O'Brien avatar is making me dizzy . . .

    Anyway, congrats on your purchase! Consider it an investment.

    As for the mod wheel controller, I find that I've been drawing the mod wheel data into Overture (and using the hairpin feature in Overture 4) much more often than using the mod wheel on my keyboard.

    I look forward to your demos . . . well, maybe not if there will be more Disco Bagpipes . . .
    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

  3. #3

    Re: No more excuses!

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueMax
    The one I have has a lever for modulation (instead of a wheel) which snaps back to the "zero" position.... due to the silly way (IMHO) Kontact uses modulation for volume instead of volume for volume, audio drops to ZERO every time I touch the stupid thing - very frustrating.
    I've been over this subject many times but I'll revisit it here. I'd actually say that the problem described here is with the silly way that a few hardware manufacturers make their mod wheels spring-loaded (a BAD idea.) At least that's the main problem when one is trying to input data from an external controller. But to clarify some issues here:

    1. The use of the mod wheel for volume/timbre is not dictated by the Kontakt player it is a choice we made. We went with the three most ubiquitous controllers (Keyboard, mod wheel, and sustain pedal) as the ones available to almost everyone in an average setup. Most people do not have a volume pedal that can be assigned to the standard expressive volume parameter: cc11. Which brings us to:

    2. MIDI volume (cc7) is not intended to control expressive volume changes of an instrument. That is the job of cc11 in the MIDI spec. cc11 is called the "expression" controller. MIDI volume, on the other hand, is intended to control the relative level settings between instruments, not continuous expressive changes within a track. In GPO, we have moved the cc11 function to the mod wheel because almost everyone has a mod wheel but few people have a cc11 slider. Actually, we have expanded the cc11 function to also include simultaneous changes in timbre but essentially cc11 is what we are replacing with the mod wheel. Now this shouldn't create any special problems except when the manufacturer has made the unfortunate decision to spring-load the mod wheel or:

    3. The user is not applying mod wheel data correctly to the MIDI tracks. In a properly done MIDI track the volume will never jump down to zero (except when the user wants it to) because the track will be constantly receiving mod wheel data updates. It is not a "set and forget" controller. Following the old rule, "a picture is worth a thousand words," a properly done track should resemble this: www.garritan.com/JABB/FlugelScreenshotMW.jpg This screenshot shows the midi note data above in piano roll fashion and the corresponding mod wheel data below, aligned with the piano roll. Note that the mod wheel data sent by the track is almost constantly changing. This is how it is designed to be used and should avoid any unintended jumps to zero. Of course, if you are playing from a keyboard that has a spring-loaded MW then you will always be fighting it. But your track data won't have the problem.

    One other thing: Make sure that you input (or draw) mod wheel data at a resolution that your sequencer can handle. I would not recommend anything higher than 64th note entry at common tempi. Very high data density can cause problems when you have a lot of tracks. Remember, MIDI uses a serial data stream and can clog the bandwidth if the data density is too great. Use a resolution high enough to give smooth changes but low enough to avoid clogging.

    Tom

  4. #4
    Senior Member BlueMax's Avatar
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    Re: No more excuses!

    Now we're cookin' with gas! Thanks for the great advice! Can't wait to get started...
    "AAAAUUUUGGHHHHHHH!!!!!!" -- Charlie Brown

  5. #5
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
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    Re: No more excuses!

    Blue, you have to get rid of that avatar!
    Styxx

  6. #6

    Re: No more excuses!

    Does your MIDI controller have any other controls?

    I have one of the Edirol PCR's, and it has the annoying spring-loaded mod-wheel. So I just assigned one of the sliders to CC1/modulation, and I ignore the wheel entirely.

    I prefer working at home on my big ol' FATAR controller--but I have this Edirol for working on the road (or, to be a bit more honest, working in the living room while watching TV).

    If your controller has any assignable sliders/faders/knobs, you can probably set it up this way.

    chris.

  7. #7

    Re: No more excuses!

    Quote Originally Posted by CallMeZoot
    I have one of the Edirol PCR's, and it has the annoying spring-loaded mod-wheel. So I just assigned one of the sliders to CC1/modulation, and I ignore the wheel entirely.
    Same here: Edirol PCR-30. My upper-right slider group is:

    Breath, Expression, Channel Aftertouch, Mod Wheel

    Pretty much gives all the classic controllers on four parallel fingers.

    Though I do use the Roland-style "wang-bar" for other style playing. After using my Kawai K1 for years, with separate wheels for pitch and mod, it makes for a refreshing approach. So I wouldn't exactly call it "annoying".

    - m
    Free MFX and other plugins: http://www.TenCrazy.com/
    Markleford's music: http://www.markleford.com/music/

  8. #8
    Senior Member BlueMax's Avatar
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    Re: No more excuses!

    If you have an EDIROL keyboard, it's probably ten years newer than my ancient Roland PC-200.

    It sucks..... but it's a working keyboard. It has one slider that I can assign only: Volume, Pan Pot, Velocity.

    Oh... and no foot pedal option either.
    "AAAAUUUUGGHHHHHHH!!!!!!" -- Charlie Brown

  9. #9

    Re: No more excuses!

    Speaking of Roland... What's the deal with the "paddle" mod/pitch thingy? After a long time I got used to the pitch bend being sideways from every other keyboard, but the mod is just an on/off king of deal... Fortunately, my main keyboard (JV-90) has aftertouch, but still...

    Diego

  10. #10

    Re: No more excuses!

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueMax
    It has one slider that I can assign only: Volume, Pan Pot, Velocity.
    Heck, that's an easy fix, then!

    Depending on your sequencer, you could map the Volume control to Mod Wheel. If there's no in-host solution, you could use a plugin: if you have a MFX-plugin capable host (Cakewalk stuff, Cubase SX series via wrapper), you could use my TenCrazy.com MFX CC Map plugin. Otherwise there's probably a VST-MIDI plugin out there to do the same.

    - m
    Free MFX and other plugins: http://www.TenCrazy.com/
    Markleford's music: http://www.markleford.com/music/

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