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Topic: bassoon in gpo4

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  1. #1

    bassoon in gpo4

    I am using the updated version of ARIA.
    The instrument order for my song is:
    flute
    oboe
    violin
    cello
    bassoon.
    For some reason the bassoon seems to be playing just a little bit late. I have tried to slide it a little in SONAR, but it just does not seem right. All of the other instruments line up fine in time, but the bassoon just does not want to lay right in time. Does anybody have a suggestion.
    Thanks -Jay

  2. #2

    Re: bassoon in gpo4

    if your attacks (velocity) are low it will sound late.
    This again proves that just because midi notes line up does not mean
    everything will be nice and tight audibly. This is especially true with strings too.

    Gotta use them ears,.... and it sounds like you have
    Dan

  3. #3

    Re: bassoon in gpo4

    Dan! That is exactly what the problem was. For some reason the velocity was very low and I adjusted it to a middle range. It now works perfectly. Thank you very much.
    -Jay

  4. #4

    Re: bassoon in gpo4

    About a year ago I noticed that a soft bassoon in Sibelius + GPO4, using out-of-the-box velocities, was very late. I could have modified the velocities, but I assumed the delays reflected the actual behavior of a bassoon so I changed my scores to compensate.

    Are you saying that this is not characteristic of the bassoon, and the velocities need to be tweaked in order for the GPO4 bassoons to reasonably reflect real bassoon behavior? My impression is that such tweaking is not needed for most GPO4 woodwinds.

    Pat

  5. #5

    Re: bassoon in gpo4

    Quote Originally Posted by pokeefe View Post
    Are you saying that this is not characteristic of the bassoon, and the velocities need to be tweaked in order for the GPO4 bassoons to reasonably reflect real bassoon behavior? My impression is that such tweaking is not needed for most GPO4 woodwinds.

    Pat
    Hi Pat, it is not a characteristic of bassoons.

    An amazing thing that Tom Hopkins has done with all these instruments in GPO is making the Kontakt and ARIA player play only a specific part of a sample. These are things that go on "under the hood". When we use Auto-Legato (in ARIA) or the sustain pedal for legato in Kontakt, the player must deliver the sample without the attack portion of the sample. As we probably all know, GPO does not have specific Staccato samples for the brass or woodwinds. So, one sample has to sound decent when notes are short (with reasonably high velocity) and smooth when there is low velocity. My guess is that the bassoon you are talking about in GPO has too much of beginning of the samples and therefore produces late sluggish delivery. Since I know nothing about how this "under the hood" stuff works, it is my opinion that the engine (player) should actually move the samples a tad early if the attacks are low. This would eliminate the sluggish playing of the bassoon. But then, you get into inconsistent timing relative to the velocity. These things are decided by the programmer of the library and that person is always having to make decisions about what is best for the overall sound, whether the notes are staccato or legato. A very time consuming part of the programming I'm sure.

    I often "nudge" the midi notes forward in my sequencer for instruments that are lagging behind. Of course this "nudging" can only be done if the ears are sensitive to great time in the first place, but if they aren't, the project will be completed with these drunk musicians.
    Dan

  6. #6

    Re: bassoon in gpo4

    Quote Originally Posted by DPDAN View Post
    Hi Pat, it is not a characteristic of bassoons.

    An amazing thing that Tom Hopkins has done with all these instruments in GPO is making the Kontakt and ARIA player play only a specific part of a sample. These are things that go on "under the hood". When we use Auto-Legato (in ARIA) or the sustain pedal for legato in Kontakt, the player must deliver the sample without the attack portion of the sample. As we probably all know, GPO does not have specific Staccato samples for the brass or woodwinds. So, one sample has to sound decent when notes are short (with reasonably high velocity) and smooth when there is low velocity. My guess is that the bassoon you are talking about in GPO has too much of beginning of the samples and therefore produces late sluggish delivery. Since I know nothing about how this "under the hood" stuff works, it is my opinion that the engine (player) should actually move the samples a tad early if the attacks are low. This would eliminate the sluggish playing of the bassoon. But then, you get into inconsistent timing relative to the velocity. These things are decided by the programmer of the library and that person is always having to make decisions about what is best for the overall sound, whether the notes are staccato or legato. A very time consuming part of the programming I'm sure.

    I often "nudge" the midi notes forward in my sequencer for instruments that are lagging behind. Of course this "nudging" can only be done if the ears are sensitive to great time in the first place, but if they aren't, the project will be completed with these drunk musicians.
    Dan
    As a former bassoonist, I'd like to weigh in here if I may. With woodwinds (and I assume brass) attack speed is determined by how quickly the tongue is taken off the reed (or mouthpiece) to initiate airflow through the instrument. Playing articulated (tongued) notes there is only one attack speed -- fast. This is true regardless of how loud or soft the winds and brass are playing. Although this may seem counterintuitive, it would be incorrect to assume that softer passages would require lower key velocities.

    Based on my prior experience with GPO2, I believe that articulated notes with the wind and brass patches should always have the key velocity set to 127. IMHO the only reason to go below that is for legato passages, where the first note is articulated, and the kv for the subsequent notes is reduced to emulate the smooth flow of air through the instrument as those notes are being played. (I don't know about GPO4, but in GPO2 it seemed that the difference in attack speeds for the winds and brass were negligible below a kv of about 64.)

    Steve
    If you'd like to hear a couple of pieces I might actually finish someday, please visit my virtual concert hall.

  7. #7

    Re: bassoon in gpo4

    Jay - you probably didn't know you were starting such an interesting thread. This is really good discussion here, going beyond answering the specific question you started with.

    Moving MIDI clips (portions of tracks) so they best fit in "the pocket" of a given piece is almost always part of the work when putting together a project. As DPDAN said, the classic example of this is strings. Back in the '80's when I first started working with MIDI, one of the first things I learned was that with a soft attack ("slow envelope") on strings, they had to be moved to the left so the swell to full volume would mesh with the pulse of the music.

    Pokeefe, you've already had good replies also, but I want to add something - "... My impression is that such tweaking is not needed for most GPO4 woodwinds..."

    I think you probably see by now, from reading this thread, that compensating for late notes due to soft attacks isn't a flaw, it's just the logical outcome of having notes swell in like that. And in general, I think it's beneficial for all MIDI musicians/composers to think in terms of Always needing to "tweak" a track, since it takes human guidance (ours) to make the instruments we use make the most expressive sense.

    Steve - This is great that you posted also, with the very helpful perspective of a Bassoon player. Something especially important to me is your point that the combination of high velocities and low volume can be perfectly natural. I've tried to explain that in posts before at another musician site, but the other people thought it was too complicated - they felt that high velocities should always mean high volume, and that's plainly not the case. Your post made that more clear.

    I do think we can use a greater variety of velocity values than topping everything off at 127, but as Dan said, all such decisions need to be made with our ears, listening for what we think sounds best for our music.

    Randy

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