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Topic: Does this use of the mod wheel sound O.K.?

  1. #1

    Does this use of the mod wheel sound O.K.?

    I created an experimental patch with the Giga editor using a combination of LP filter control and attenuation control by the mod wheel. The aim was to make the instrument more expressive. I know it’s a very basic technique, but I would like some feedback on whether it sounds plausible in this case. Here are a few very short demos:


    The main instrument used is the oboe d’amore from vol 7 of Xsample. Because I only have the Akai version, I had to create my own patch to get this kind of expression control in GigaStudio. How realistic do you think the swells on the longer sustained notes sound? I know the vibrato sounds odd sometimes, but I think that is an unavoidable consequence of the sample looping. Besides adding swells to the long sustains, I also used the mod-wheel expression to round off (fade out) the notes at the end of each melodic phrase. Otherwise they would have ended too abruptly. How well do these phrase-end notes sound to you?

    Any other comments on the composition, or the sound and technique would be most welcome.

    BTW, the piano is PMI Grandioso Steinway. Various software reverbs were used, including Cakewalk FX3.

  2. #2

    Re: Does this use of the mod wheel sound O.K.?

    Hi David,
    Very nice work. Your skills are impressive-to say the least.
    The patch sounds very emotional and very \'real\' or life. The swells on the longer sustained notes sound great.
    To answer your question on the phrase-end notes: The endings are now always soft, while in real-life the oboe can produce a substantial click on the ending of notes. This isn\'t always a wanted effect but can produce more natural effects than the always-fade-to-silence you have produced now.

    I would try adding a release layer to your custom patch. As release sample you could experiment with a reversed small portion of the attack-phase of the oboe. When the volume of the release is controlled by a midi controller like GP#1 or the pitch wheel, you can add this extra ending sound to taste. Some notes could benefit from it, some should not need it.

    Beautiful music and a great piano sound (BTW [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img] ).

  3. #3

    Re: Does this use of the mod wheel sound O.K.?

    Thanks for your great response, Michiel.
    It had never occurred to me to use reversed attacks to create releases. I will try it.
    There is also a set of staccato samples for the oboe (which of course have natural releases). Might these be of use in creating releases for the sustains?
    The idea of varying the note endings also seems good. Thanks for the tip. Clearly, I need to experiment further.
    I tried various different pianos for this piece, and decided that your Steinway worked best here. In fact, I can honestly tell you that I use it more than any other piano. My favorite! Perhaps you could advise me how to make it sound even better. In this case, I was trying to make it sound more like an accompanying instrument. When unprocessed it sounds to me like a solo instrument, which was not what I really wanted here. I used Cakewalk Soundstage (FX3) in an attempt to give it the right kind of stereo placement. Hardly any reverb was added to the piano (only a very slight ambience from the FX3). Instead, I mixed in a fairly heavy dose of the “distant” patch. The latter had no processing added to it all (no reverb, no FX3, no EQ, nothing).

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