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Topic: Velocity settings with wind instruments

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  1. #1

    Velocity settings with wind instruments

    I am not sure how to set the velocity of individual notes on wind instruments when working with midi tracks. The problem is most noticeable to me in the sound of a trumpet. I do not get a really nice trumpet sound. I know the mod wheel does the dynamics, but I'm not quite sure what the key velocity does and how it affects the overall sound of wind instruments. All this becomes crucial to me when I try to record mod wheel and foot pedal movements in real time. If I solo the instrument (say trumpet) and overdub mod wheel and foot pedal movements, I get a sound coming from my mixing board that is so soft that I can hardly hear any changes when I move the mod wheel. If I raise all the key velocities to 100% then I can hear the trumpet but I can't hear the mod wheel crescendos and decrescendos. But, when I play it back the mod wheel is too high for most of the track and the volume is past the O Db mark.

    What am I missing?
    [Music is the Rhythm, Harmony and Breath of Life]
    "Music is music, and a note's a note" - Louis 'Satchmo' Armstrong

    Rich

  2. #2

    Re: Velocity settings with wind instruments

    Quote Originally Posted by RichR
    I am not sure how to set the velocity of individual notes on wind instruments when working with midi tracks. The problem is most noticeable to me in the sound of a trumpet. I do not get a really nice trumpet sound. I know the mod wheel does the dynamics, but I'm not quite sure what the key velocity does and how it affects the overall sound of wind instruments. All this becomes crucial to me when I try to record mod wheel and foot pedal movements in real time. If I solo the instrument (say trumpet) and overdub mod wheel and foot pedal movements, I get a sound coming from my mixing board that is so soft that I can hardly hear any changes when I move the mod wheel. If I raise all the key velocities to 100% then I can hear the trumpet but I can't hear the mod wheel crescendos and decrescendos. But, when I play it back the mod wheel is too high for most of the track and the volume is past the O Db mark.

    What am I missing?
    Rich,

    The problem sounds like it's in your sequencer. What software are you using? My guess is that when you play back, there is CC7 data that is setting the volume too high. You'll want to set this at the start of the track to something more manageable.

    Velocity should only affect the attack. So with trumpet, lower velocities will give a soft attack, higher velocities a harder sharper attack. While playing live and on playback, you should use the mod wheel. This controls both volume and timbre.

    So essentially, set a base volume level with CC7... then your controllable volume should be mod wheel (CC1), and your attack quality is velocity.

    Good luck. Does this help any?

    Teddy

  3. #3

    Re: Velocity settings with wind instruments

    So essentially, set a base volume level with CC7... then your controllable volume should be mod wheel (CC1), and your attack quality is velocity.
    This makes sense. I'll try it and respond later. Thanks so much.
    [Music is the Rhythm, Harmony and Breath of Life]
    "Music is music, and a note's a note" - Louis 'Satchmo' Armstrong

    Rich

  4. #4

    Re: Velocity settings with wind instruments

    Teddy,

    Thanks for the suggestions. I did try checking the cc7. I am using Tracktion2 and do not have any cc7 level set. Even when I set it to some value, there is no effect on the sound at playback or during recording time. When I solo a track to record mod wheel movements, the sound coming from my speakers is weak and soft. When I play back the track as a soloed track, it sounds a little louder but with minimal volume changes (even if I have moved the mod wheel the full range it can go). However, when I play the track unsoloed with other tracks, it immediately plays very loud and sometimes past distortion.

    This has been a problem all along and I have dealt with it by guessing how much to move the mod wheel (without actually hearing it).

    Is anyone having this problem also? I have tried it in Cubase 3.5 with the same issues.

    Any help would be appreciated.
    [Music is the Rhythm, Harmony and Breath of Life]
    "Music is music, and a note's a note" - Louis 'Satchmo' Armstrong

    Rich

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