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Topic: Volume problems with JABB

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  1. #1

    Volume problems with JABB

    I just started using the JABB library. I like the instruments a lot and to try some out, I wrote a short salsa-like cue (not authentic necessarily, as others have pointed out, but it reminds me of Celia Cruz): http://www.boletta.com/salsa/

    I'm a brass player myself, and I think the trumpets and trombones in JABB are terrific. But mixing at high volumes levels can be tricky, and I encountered a similar problem with the JABB library that I have had with the GPO samples. I know that the mod wheel plays an important role in Garritan libraries, so I always make sure there is a Modulation CC command manually set at the beginning of all tracks to make sure the volume is at least "on."

    So I tweak around and get everything sounding great. The mix levels are just right, but if I close my Logic file, when I re-open it, most of the instruments are muted. No sound. In order to remedy this, I have to go to the Kontakt player, select the loaded instrument, and turn the virtual mod wheel up. Then the instrument's volume is restored, or it least it comes back to some degree. Sometimes the volume level is actually different than it was in the previous session.

    I know others on the GPO forum have discussed this volume problem in the past. Why does the virtual mod wheel affect instruments which already have a CC setting for modulation? Does the Komtakt Player override automation settings in the sequencer?

    Is there any way to get around this and keep volume levels consistent from session to session? Is there something I can do to prevent these volume levels from disappearing?

    Thanks,

    Bill
    Last edited by wlbwlb; 03-15-2006 at 12:12 AM. Reason: mistake

  2. #2

    Re: Volume problems with JABB

    Why don't you just record modwheel events at the top of your tracks to create a "volume up" situation? For instance, if you want max volume for a particular instrument, record (or draw in using hyperdraw) a CC#01=127 event. Then turn on Logic's chase function for controllers 1 - 15 and you should be good to go.

    Well, almost good to go. I use GPO, not JABB, but perhaps they're similar in the way they perform(?). IN my case, GPO instruments don't always like to play the first note of certain MIDI regions even though modwheel is being chased. Not sure where the bug lies. But in any event, I suggest adding the modwheel event at the top of your tracks.

  3. #3

    Re: Volume problems with JABB

    Quote Originally Posted by wlbwlb
    I know that the mod wheel plays an important role in Garritan libraries, so I always make sure there is a Modulation CC command manually set at the beginning of all tracks to make sure the volume is at least "on."
    A single piece of data at the beginning of the track *may* be sufficient to hold a level if your sequencer has a "chase controllers" option but that is still not the way cc1 data is intended to be used in either GPO or JABB. And the virtual mod wheel should never be used for resetting levels.
    So I tweak around and get everything sounding great. The mix levels are just right, but if I close my Logic file, when I re-open it, most of the instruments are muted. No sound. In order to remedy this, I have to go to the Kontakt player, select the loaded instrument, and turn the virtual mod wheel up. Then the instrument's volume is restored, or it least it comes back to some degree. Sometimes the volume level is actually different than it was in the previous session.
    I wrote this awhile back in another thread: "Nudging the virtual player mod wheel will accomplish nothing permanent. It is there for convenient testing; it has no function for controlling the player in notation or sequencing programs. Why? Because movements of the graphic wheel cannot be recorded to your tracks/staves; it is internal to the player and has no communication with the outside world. It, however, does react to incoming data, so can be used to monitor total incoming mod wheel data (caution: You'll see mod wheel data arriving at the player from all channels at once, which can be confusing, so I'd ignore that too, for the most part.)

    The player only responds to data arriving from an external source, like a hardware keyboard controller or actual data in your tracks/staves. Therefore, you must make certain that actual data is in those tracks/staves in the form of cc1 data or dynamic symbols (which send mod wheel data.)

    I end up being a broken record on this point but: Mod wheel data is not a "set and forget" controller. Properly done, your tracks will be filled with changing mod wheel data from start to finish, establishing the ebb and flow of your passages. When this is the case your instruments will never drop to silence, except when you want them to."

    Why does the virtual mod wheel affect instruments which already have a CC setting for modulation? Does the Komtakt Player override automation settings in the sequencer?
    The virtual mod wheel has a direct connection to the player so it will overide any previously received command until the next incoming command arrives. Another good reason to avoid using the virtual mod wheel.

    Is there any way to get around this and keep volume levels consistent from session to session? Is there something I can do to prevent these volume levels from disappearing?
    Yes. Make sure you have almost constant cc1 activity in your tracks. A correctly done track should look something like this: www.garritan.com/JABB/ModWheel/MWDataScreenshot.jpg The data needn't be as dense as this example but it should be so consistently present that your instruments are always being updated on level.

    Tom

  4. #4

    Re: Volume problems with JABB

    Thanks, Tom, for this thorough and completely clear explanation of the mod wheel and it functions in Garritan libraries. I looked at the example file you linked to and, frankly, blanched a bit. If one inputs MIDI at the keyboard with one hand on the keys and the other on the mod wheel this is not such a chore, but I often input MIDI manually, copying and pasting all over the place between and within instrument tracks.

    The upside of that is that I can copy the automation data as well, so it goes with the notes. The downside is that it would take me a great deal of time to input all that continuous mod wheel controller data for a dozen or so instruments.

    I'm curious about how the mod wheel came to control volume per se since there is clearly another MIDI CC specifically for volume. Of course, velocity is also connected with volume, and many sample libraries have velocity levels which change the timbre and sometimes even the volume depending on the velocity setting. Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but the mod wheel also adds legato between notes in Garritan libraries, doesn't it, along with CC#64?

    I remember some time ago experimenting with oboes in GPO and trying various ways to get a good legato. Here is what I posted back then:

    http://www.isc.senshu-u.ac.jp/~thb0422/gpo/

    Thanks,

    Bill

  5. #5

    Re: Volume problems with JABB

    I'm using JABB with Finale 2007b. What is the fastest way to combat the volume problem without having to push up the modulation wheel for every track to restore volume levels each time I open the program? thank you.

  6. #6

    Re: Volume problems with JABB

    Quote Originally Posted by Salami
    I'm using JABB with Finale 2007b. What is the fastest way to combat the volume problem without having to push up the modulation wheel for every track to restore volume levels each time I open the program? thank you.
    Whether you are working in a sequencer or a notation program the issue is the same: You must have data in your tracks/staves. In Notation it should be as simple as placing a dynamic marking at the beginning of the stave so long as the program is setup to send mod wheel data values from dynamic symbols. You could, alternatively, enter the cc1 midi values manually. Others with intimate knowledge of Finale 2007 might be able to give you more detailed advice.

    Tom

  7. #7

    Re: Volume problems with JABB

    HI, Bill

    You've gotten expert advice on your thread.

    I wanted to ask if you're using a Sonar sequencer? It's been stated many times on this and other Forums, but one MUst un-check the "zero controllers when play stops" option to be found in the Project Option pop-up under "MIDI Out." Clearly, if the program does indeed zero controllers every time you stop play back of a GPO project, then cc1 will constantly be turned off.

    And you said:

    "...The downside is that it would take me a great deal of time to input all that continuous mod wheel controller data for a dozen or so instruments..."

    Well, then you must roll up your sleeves and dig in. I understand you to mean you do a lot of hand editing, but it's much more satisfactory to make another recording pass, using the mod wheel alone--after you've previously recorded the notes--That is, if you for some reason don't want to record both at the same time.

    The screen shot Tom Hopkins posted of a Piano Roll View looks like it could have been taken from one of my projects. It's rare for me to have a track with cc1 data less dense than that. If you start using the mod wheel this thoroughly, it won't feel like a chore--you'll get excited with the much more musical results you're getting.

    Best of luck.

    rbowser

  8. #8

    Re: Volume problems with JABB

    The bass drum is always to loud in the jabb. Is there anyway to soften the bass drum in the drum set?

  9. #9

    Re: Volume problems with JABB

    Hi, barvinge

    I understand that your question is related to the original one on this thread, but it would be much more effective for you to ask this question as a new thread - a whole new topic, rather than resurrecting an 8 month old thread. People will be much more likely to give you replies if you started a whole new topic--see what I mean?

    But here's what I have to offer about your question--which is how to deal with JABB's Bass drum volume, or by extension, any JABB drum sound which is louder than you want it to be:

    -To have control over your drums, you need to not have them all on the same track. Usually, one doesn't want the Bass Drum to have as much reverb as the rest of the drum set. It's also a good procedure to use different reverb settings for the Snare and the Cymbals.

    You need to divide your drums MIDI track into several, so that one only has the Bass Drum on it, another has the Snare, and yet another has the Toms - maybe separate the Cymbals also.

    You can do the original recording on one track, but then you need to select and cut all the Bass Drum notes, and paste them into a new MIDI track. Do the same with any parts of the drum kit you'd like on separate tracks.

    Once the drum kit has been divided up like this, you can treat each track completely differently from each other. The Kick (Bass Drum) can be given no reverb, to keep it as crisp and clean as possible - The Snare can be given whatever amount of reverb you want, since it's on its own track - and so forth.

    Obviously, not only can you treat each part of the kit with different amounts of reverb in this procedure, but you also have complete control of the individual volumes also. Bass Drum too loud?--turn its track down.

    You see?

    Randy B.
    (rbowser)

  10. #10

    Re: Volume problems with JABB

    Thanks Randy, This was the first time on NS, I was alittle behind on the process. Thanks for your help.
    BV

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