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Topic: Sonar: volume,velocity,C11,C1

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  1. #1
    Senior Member tedvanya's Avatar
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    Sonar: volume,velocity,C11,C1

    Please, I wish to have help here, not on Sonar Forum...
    Could someone using Sonar (I am on Sonar X3 Studio) clear out my old mind ( if any left),
    I have a volume adjustment in the Aria and one in Sonar.
    Velocity is also volume related (supposedly changing timber also)
    C11, expression is volume,
    C1, on some instruments controlling volume also..
    On top of all this, in Piano roll I can have an envelope controlling volume, or C11 or C1.
    What is the proper way to make order in this (to me mess?
    If I recall, Randy at one time advised to set the volume in Aria at one level and then not touch it any more. If I do this, then any change in Sonar Track view volume will change Aria's set volume.
    I wish if it would be only one volume control.
    It would help me if someone would instruct me how to set up a project for mixing, without getting all confused as I am now...

    Ted

  2. #2

    Re: Sonar: volume,velocity,C11,C1

    Well, Ted, I'll do my best. I use Sonar, but 8.5. However, that shouldn't make a difference. I use GPO, EWQL Symphonic Orchestra Gold, Vienna Sp. Ed. 1, plus some Sonar stuff from the Dimension Pro and TTS-1. Also, Cinematic Strings. Here's what I do:

    Set all synth volumes to zero on console view. You can adjust them later as needed, to balance the different synth outputs, bring them into balance with each other. Set the main meters to zero. Set any buses to zero (for example, reverb). Again, you can adjust these as you go, but best to start everything at zero.

    For GPO, I set an initial volume CC-7 in Event List, usually starting with 80, going up or down as needed. Bassoons are too loud and may need to be toned down, for example. Then, I use CC-11 for on the fly adjustments. CC-11 gives you finer adjustments than CC-7.

    For EWQLSO, I use the same approach. I do find that I need to boost the volume slider on individual instruments on the EW synth, "Play."

    For Vienna, same approach as EW. I have to boost the instruments on their synth as well.

    Dim Pro and TTS-1: I have to adjust the synth volume sometimes in Console View.

    Cinematic Strings: This is the weird one. I discovered you have to just use CC-7 all the way for volume. Forget CC-11 here. You probably don't have that, but I list it as it is an exception to the rule. Hope this helps!

    The reality is that there are no hard and fast rules. Everyone does things a little differently. Results are all that matter. But hopefully this will give you some things to try at least.

  3. #3

    Re: Sonar: volume,velocity,C11,C1

    A brief word on this, if I may, as a long term MIDI'er but shorter term ARIA'er.

    CC#7 is the overall volume control, its use should be to adjust the relative volume level between instruments.
    Often, in GPO4, they are set at -4dB which equates to a MIDI level of 100.
    As has been said, some may need backing off a little to 90 or 80 or less.
    Once set, these values are typically left alone.

    With ARIA and Garritan libraries ther are three controls which can be used for 'expression'.
    CC#1 (assigned to the modulation wheel), cc#2 or breath control and cc#11 actually called expression in the MIDI standards. All these controls work identically with non-percussive sounds, i.e. strings (but not plucked), woodwind and brass.

    As well as changing the volume of a note cc#1, cc#2 and cc#11 will also change the timbre.
    The velocity of the note (part of the MIDI Note On message) also changes the attack.

    CC#7 does NOT change the timbre or attack.

    The advice is to find a part of the piece being created where the maximum forte occurs for most instruments and get the relative volumes correct using cc#7.

    Then use just one of the other controls (1 or 2 or 11) to adjust the expression.

    In the case of percussive instruments, like piano or pizz strings, it is only the note on velocity that changes volume, timbre and attack.

    Randy posted this information some time ago, but maybe not distilled down to the essence as I have done here.
    He also posted information about how ARIA is controlled in Sonar.
    I'll see if I can find that post for you.

    Kind regards,
    John.
    Author of MIDI tutorials at http://midi-tutor.proboards.com/index.cgi

  4. #4
    Senior Member tedvanya's Avatar
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    Re: Sonar: volume,velocity,C11,C1

    I love anything distilled, so I love this too.
    Thank you both for trying to wise me up, and for providing me a good starting point.
    All is much clearer now, wish my hearing would be clearer, I have a Dr.s appointment tomorrow, I am practically deaf now on my left ear..(I am getting closer to Beethoven?!?! Just kidding)
    Thanks again

    Ted

  5. #5

    Re: Sonar: volume,velocity,C11,C1

    Hi Ted, I just realized that I did not address velocity in my response. This has always been a bit mysterious to me. Its function seems to vary across libraries. In East West, it changes the timbre. but in most situations, it seems to affect the attack, but also overall volume. For GPO, I find myself setting it in the 70's a lot. Sonar defaults it to 65, which is a good starting point. I set it really high for GPO's percussion. again, people do things differently. I doubt that there are two people who do this stuff exactly the same.

  6. #6
    Senior Member tedvanya's Avatar
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    Re: Sonar: volume,velocity,C11,C1

    Thanks again Michael, using some of your ideas allready.

    Ted

  7. #7

    Re: Sonar: volume,velocity,C11,C1

    Just remembered something else, Ted. (Damn, this stuff gets complicated)! When I talk "velocity," I'm referring to the Sonar plug-in. I right-click in the instrument panel over on the left, in track view, to get to their velocity plug-in. I grab one for each instrument, and that's where I set the velocity. I usually ignore the regular velocity slider.

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