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Topic: Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

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  1. #1

    Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

    I'm wondering if anyone knows whether the pan sliders in K2 instruments are midi pans (where the volume of one channel is lowered so that the signal of the opposite channel is more present), or are "real" pans (where part of the info of a channel is panned to the opposite channel).

    If it is midi panning, does anyone know how to get real panning in Kontakt 2? I don't see any pan sliders or knobs in the output section of K2.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Tom Crowning's Avatar
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    Re: Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

    Quote Originally Posted by Martin Nadeau
    I'm wondering if anyone knows whether the pan sliders in K2 instruments are midi pans (where the volume of one channel is lowered so that the signal of the opposite channel is more present), or are "real" pans (where part of the info of a channel is panned to the opposite channel).

    If it is midi panning, does anyone know how to get real panning in Kontakt 2? I don't see any pan sliders or knobs in the output section of K2.

    Thanks in advance.
    I would be VERY surprised if ANY paning on a PC would be what you
    described as 'real' panning.

    Maybe a effects plugin can (and an audio-editor will) do this, but I doubt if
    'normal' programmes will do this.

    BTW, the sound you'll hear is the same, so why do you need this?

  3. #3

    Re: Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

    I don't have K2 open ATM, so I can't answer the MIDI part of your question (although I suspect that it does onlt raise one side of the sample relative to the other).
    However in my seqencer (Nuendo) it can be done, as long as you are in plug-in mode. If each instrument to its own output, this can then be panned properly in the sequencer, as this is audio information. In Nuendo it is done with a right click and then pan as in any audio application.

    D

  4. #4

    Re: Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Crowning
    I would be VERY surprised if ANY paning on a PC would be what you
    described as 'real' panning.

    Maybe a effects plugin can (and an audio-editor will) do this, but I doubt if
    'normal' programmes will do this.

    BTW, the sound you'll hear is the same, so why do you need this?
    MIDI panning is certainly not the same as proper panning, sound-wise.

    D

  5. #5

    Re: Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

    Hi guys,

    So now I'm confused.

    I asked that same question on another forum, and was told by a trusted source that there were only two kinds of panning: the one where one channel's volume is lowered compared to the other, and another more "esoteric" kind of panning that recreates the "Haas effect", and which you can find in Kontakt 2's surround panner effect, and maybe some other specialized plugins.

    So this would have meant that midi panning and the panning from a mixer or sequencer output both use the same method, which would have meant that the previous threads I had read about using a sequencer's panning being better than midi panning would have been based on false assumptions.

    But now Daryl is saying that it's not the same thing. Could you please explain what is different between midi panning and panning using a sequencer's output? Why is one better than the other? I'm asking because I'm using Kontakt in standalone mode on a dedicated PC, and I have to decide if it would be worth the extra expense and trouble of running it inside a VST host which could do "proper" panning. Right now, I can't even compare the sound from the different panning methods (assuming there really are different methods) since I only have Kontakt in standalone mode.

    Many thanks in advance!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Tom Crowning's Avatar
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    Re: Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

    Quote Originally Posted by Daryl
    MIDI panning is certainly not the same as proper panning, sound-wise.

    D
    Actually I don't meant 'MIDI' panning because I don't even know what this
    word means in this context.
    I meant (no matter what the correct word for this is) the difference between
    panning by just lowering the output of one channel (and increasing the other)
    and panning by adding one channel to the other one.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Big Bob's Avatar
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    Re: Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

    Hi guys,

    I have serious misgivings about jumping in here because I don't want to 'open a can of worms' nor do I want to step on anyone's toes.

    That being said, I'll tell you what I know about panning. There are true stereo sources (such as samples, etc) and there are mono sources. True stereo (often called 2-microphone stereo), attempts to capture something akin to what we hear in real life by virtue of having a pair of ears. In order to reproduce stereo recordings two separate amplifier channels and speakers (or headphones) are required. Therefore, all stereo systems have two playback channels, dubbed Left and Right. When multitrack recording first became popular (around the same time as when home stereo playback hardware began to catch on), most instruments and vocal parts were recorded monophonically on a separate track. But, since 2-track (L/R) playback systems were common, the multitrack was mixed down to 2 tracks instead of one. A mono track can be 'positioned' anywhere in the L/R stereo field by setting the relative proportion of the mono signal that's sent to the left and right channels. If an equal amount is sent to each, the mono source appears to be in the center of the speakers. If 100% is sent to the Left and 0% is sent to the Right, the mono source appears to be on the left of the sound panorama, etc. The panning control on a mixer simply sets the relative proportion of the mono signal that's fed to the L/R bus. There are some subtleties involved because when you rotate a mono source from full Left to full Right, you would like the perceived volume to be the same no matter where you position the sound in the panorama. For this to happen, you can't use simple linear proportion because the sound will appear to dip by about 6db in the center. To maintain uniform volume across the pan, special sine/cosine contours are used in higher-end mixers.

    This technique is usually refered to as 'volume panning'. There are other methods that can be used to synthesize stereo from mono sources such as time delay (this often relies upon the Haas effect) and reciprocal equalization. Any or all of these may be used when a stereo recording is produced. However, the only 'true stereo' components of any given mix are those that were recorded with a pair of microphones and where the L/R channels are kept distinct. For example, if you have a stereo sample, normally you will pan the Left sample 100% left and 0% right and you will pan the Right sample 100% right and 0% left. This will reproduce the sound as it was recorded. Sometimes such stereo signals are also manipulated with something similar to a pan pot to change the sound or apparent positioning of a stereo sample. Such a control used to be known as a stereo balance control. Early consumer playback equipment usually had such a 'balance' knob, but, to reduce costs the control has largely disappeared.

    Now with all this out of the way, I have to ask just what are you trying to do or what are you concerned about regarding panning? Are you talking about playing 'true stereo' samples or mono samples? And what are trying to do by panning them? Perhaps if you could elaborate a little, I might be able to help.

    Bob
    Big Bob (aka Wonderful Bob)

  8. #8

    Re: Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

    What I’ve noticed when panning a stereo source say an upright piano with the high notes to the right and lows to the left is as you pan left the high notes get softer. The sound is coming from the left but it is no longer balanced. I record to 2 mono tracks then when I pan the field moves left but the quanity of each track stays the same and my balance is unaffected. Different DAWs accomplish this in different ways, my way is perhaps a bit old fashioned but it works.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Big Bob's Avatar
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    Re: Stereo panning in Kontakt 2

    What I’ve noticed when panning a stereo source say an upright piano with the high notes to the right and lows to the left is as you pan left the high notes get softer. The sound is coming from the left but it is no longer balanced.
    I guess my explanation didn't help! You don't really pan stereo samples, you can only attempt to re-balance them. Naturally if you adjust their balance they won't remain in balance.

    I record to 2 mono tracks then when I pan the field moves left but the quanity of each track stays the same and my balance is unaffected. Different DAWs accomplish this in different ways, my way is perhaps a bit old fashioned but it works.
    Record what to 2 mono tracks? Do you mean you copy the L channel to one mono track and the R channel to another mono track? I knew I should have stayed out of this .

    Bob
    Big Bob (aka Wonderful Bob)

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