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Topic: 1 violin makes 4... an experiment

  1. #1

    1 violin makes 4... an experiment

    Hi folks,

    Some time ago I posted this little thread inside another one and it might have missed its purpose completely.

    I only wanted to share with you a little experiment of multiplying a single violin. I took one solo violin and transposed it up or down halve tones and and pitched it down/up afterwards in my DAW (pitchbend) equally. (So one half tone up means one halve tone down in pitchbend.) I did this for three violins in addition to the only solo violin.

    Why did I do this procedure? It's pretty simple: when you use the same instrument again and again, there will occur ugly phasing and many dropouts. Moreover, it will sound very unnatural (because every instrument would be an exact replica of the first one, which is impossible in real life and certainly in unison). Therefore, to make it sound more natural, you need to insert small inaccuracies or even mistakes and time shifts. In my little example, the part was not elaborated fully, because it's only an experiment. For that experiment, I took a fragment of my last arrangement (third contra dance).

    The explanation for this technique is simple: by transposing you use different samples and they do not interfere with the ones of the first instrument.

    You hear one solo violin made into 4 different ones. What do you think?

    1 violin makes 4


  2. #2
    Senior Member tedvanya's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Canada,winter Mexico

    Re: 1 violin makes 4... an experiment

    I can not get it through my tick head, why transposing a violin sound then using pitch bend to undo the transposing would result in a different sample useage from the original. I do understand that slightly time-shifting, maybe even miss-tuning, then using them together ( on separate tracks) would be closer to 4 different violins.
    I am not disagreeing with you Max, just don't understand the idea, because to me the whole process is magic. Your sample you provided sound "Max" good, but my old ears can not really detect the difference. Maybe if you would solo your 4 violins it would demonstrate what you are hearing, and maybe even I could hear the difference.

  3. #3

    Re: 1 violin makes 4... an experiment

    Hi Ted,

    I can imaging that my explanation sounds a bit weird at first.

    In fact it's pretty simple: If you use the same instrument 2 times or more, you would have the same samples playing 2 or more times together (which is theoretically impossible). There will be little time differences, but the most nasty result will be the phasing effect (frequencies coming together at the same time will play in phase). That is the case in unisons and with notes that come accidentally together in the arrangement.
    By transposing them (in the score), you play different samples (higher or lower ones). Of course you can't put these voices together like that. Therefore, you bring them back to the original position with pitchbend. The transposed samples stay, but they sound lower (or higher) that the written notes.
    My example is not the very best. I've tried to let hear unisons and different parts, all with one instrument. That's all. I don't remember whether you can apply pitchbend to the GPO instruments, but theoretically, this must be possible.

    You can do the same with chamber strings to multiplay them to a large orchestra with still the intimate sound of chamber strings...

    All the best,

  4. #4

    Re: 1 violin makes 4... an experiment

    The idea sounds similar to the old technique of building a string section out of individual solo patches. Which I never had the patience to do. I haven't yet had a listen, but I'll get back to you when I do. Any approach that is not too time-consuming, and yields more natural sound, is surely worth a look.
    michael diemer

  5. #5

    Re: 1 violin makes 4... an experiment

    Quote Originally Posted by michael diemer View Post
    Any approach that is not too time-consuming, and yields more natural sound, is surely worth a look.
    It surely worth.
    As a Reaper user you can save time setting a dummy track with built-in "pitch-trick" and saving it as a track template —or as a FX Chain— to load at need.
    Here's the FX chain:

    • ReaControlMIDI (PitchWheel pushed all the way up = +200 cents of VI pitch range = a whole tone); you must set the pertaining envelope to the maximum at the beginning of the track.
    • JS MIDI Transpose Notes semitone transposing -2.0; notes are played back to their original pitch.
    • a blank Vienna Instruments instance to be populated with proper instrument.

    Note entry is at actual pitch, no concerns for visual transposition (eg. you write a C, pitch wheel makes it a D, plug in transposes it down to C —well, actually to B flat…)

    Be careful not to use the Semitone function of VI because it's slot-oriented: if you load a matrix you should adjust it patch by patch, whereas Pitch wheel is global.

    I noticed that the transposed tracks sound richer than the original, thus I use it for first parts instead.
    Arrigo Beyle / Milanese / Lived, wrote, loved -- Stendhal
    Being Italian is a full-time job -- B. Severgnini

  6. #6

    Re: 1 violin makes 4... an experiment

    Hi Fabio,

    Thank you for your further explanation and the use in Reaper.

    As to the 'richer' sound, it's 2 different libraries. The original was done with 8 separate Dimension Violins, the short version with only 1 Solo Violin. It sounds full and rich, but too precise to be realistic. It needs a lot of randomising and humanising (also EQing) to make it believable... I didn't really bother for those elements in this experiment.


  7. #7

    Re: 1 violin makes 4... an experiment

    Must add that transposed tracks even seems to have a richer, full sound to me.
    Can't figure why.
    So, I eventually transpose 1st parts and leave the original pitched ones to 2nds.
    Arrigo Beyle / Milanese / Lived, wrote, loved -- Stendhal
    Being Italian is a full-time job -- B. Severgnini

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