I've been working with your fabulous Orchestral Strings and I was wondering whether it would be possible to alternate in legato mode (SusV LEG EXP)between up and down bows, as you can do in for example the Grand sustain ones.
I'll explain why. I much prefer the Grand Sustain Violins to the Vln SusV violins. I think the sound is much more lively, even though I don't have the Modwheel to change the dynamics. But the Grand Sustain violins are to short to make a long note last as long as I want, and the SusV violins don't have the nice sound and the alternating up and down strokes. I'm working on a copy of the first by Beethoven, and I really want to try to use up and down bows as a normal orchestra would to make it sound realistic.
Is there anywhere where I could mix them up, so I can get best of both?
I have a couple of suggestions that may help you, depending on which version of Gigastudio you have.
If you are using version 2.5x (or 3), then you can try linking ports 1 and 2, for example (by clicking on the  button to the left of the interface), and then putting one instrument in port 1 channel x and another in port 2 channel x. Both would then play together. This technique can be used with your Grand Sustain and SusV samples, or you could try experimenting with different combinations: sometimes using short bow samples, such as Marcato or Staccato (you can get the ALT benefits too), and a SusV EXP instrument can have a nice effect, especially if you ease up on the 'length' controller (GPC 8 iirc) on the short bow channel or vary it slightly throughout the piece. I have used these combinations with some success in my music. For Beethoven, you may want to check out the strings with the sfz ability, which gives a bit of extra 'grunt' at high velocities.
If you have Gigastudio 3, rather than the above method, you could create a stacked instrument but putting both sample sets onto the same port and channel: the advantage here is that you don't need to link and use multiple ports for what is, effectively, one instrument, giving you more flexibility. Either way should work nicely.
Another thing to do is to incorporate program changes in your sequencer, in which you load up multiple different string sounds, and then select which ones you need as you go along as your needs change, on the same track. The precise way you would do this varies with the sequencer.
Fwiw, I was also unaware that the Grand Sustains were looped. I'll try getting them to sound continuously (I haven't really ever used them ;-) ) and if I have any success I'll get back to you.
I tested out the Grand Sustain instruments and they do indeed seem to loop, except for those with the detache/sustain property, which allows you to switch between the looped and unlooped samples, typically with the mod-wheel.
Therefore I'm not sure of the sort of problems you have been experiencing in relation to the inadequate length of these notes: perhaps you could double-check precisely which sample set you are using.
Thank you again!!!) for your quick reply. I have to congratulate you and Gary (and others involved) on this forum. I think it's lovely and so helpfull.
I have to apologize too, because I mixed up two sample names. I mentioned the Grand Sustained ones, but I meant the Grand Detaché ones which I love, and they are not long enough for me (logical, because they're detaché), but I just love that sound and it can alternate up and down strokes.
I find it quite hard to phrase properly with the strings from GOS. I find the winds in GPO easier to control, but that's my personal view.
Thanks too for your reply. It sounds really interesting what you're writing. You seem to be quite experienced already in these matters.
I have Gigastudio 2.5 and Logic 5.1.
How do you phrase with your strings? Can you send me one of your string works? I'm really curious.
I'll give you my e-mail address if you want.
I'll have a little play with your pet Grand Detache sounds over the next couple of days to see how they stack up, literally.
In the meantime, it may pay to bear some things in mind when performing/sequencing the parts. On that point, it would be helpful to know whether you use a MIDI keyboard and/or other controllers (such as a wind controller) or just put the data into a MIDI sequencer manually.
If you use a controller, then I would suggest making sure you set the velocity curve (if available) to something that makes the attacks of your chosen instrument sound the way you like when you play the lines; you may need to change the curve from one instrument to the next, as I certainly do between strings and piano and guitar. One trick that may come in handy is playing the music in several 'takes', in which you do the basic attack/duration stuff and then come back to add in mod data etc. later. Practising using the mod wheel without recording is also a really good idea, to get a nice smooth technique going, so that the strings don't sound too bipolar.
If you input the data without a controller, then try experimenting with different curves for the modulation values (or editing the cresc./dim. plugin in Sibelius to use controller 1, for example); this is definitely worth exploring for the EXP instruments. Try out different shapes: linear and logarithmic can both sound great in the right context, and mixing it up with some subtle changes can also add to the effectiveness and realism of the end result. In fact, I think it could be beneficial to input stuff like this occasionally, even if you have a controller: it gets you to try new things and keeps you honest ;-) .
I too have had some difficulty trying to get a realistic expressive sound, particularly for classical music, and you may also like to try judicious use of EQing and convolution reverb to help you out.
Convolutions such as Voxengo Pristine Space or Altiverb (or whichever reverb is available) can really make a difference by putting these rather dry close-up samples in a space; Gigastudio 3, as you may know, features Gigapulse, which may also be worth looking at. If you want more information on this, just check out the Impulse Response forum here at Northern Sounds.
Many people suggest small EQ cuts at approx. 1350 and 2900 Hz, and rolling off the high frequencies to give a sense of distance, for pretty much all the strings, and I also recommend using a little dynamic compression on cellos and basses if you want them to be present and accounted for in the final mix, especially with a lot going on, as is often the case in Beethoven's symphonies.
Oh, and one more thing: I like to set the attack on those EXP instruments to a really sudden one (setting MIDI controller 16 to 0), so that is has a less organ-like sound. Mixing and matching your samples can also work well: I recently did a string chordal section using a layered Violin I (EXP and Marcato), Violin II, Viola and Cello only EXP and Basses also layered (this time EXP and Staccato). This produced a slightly reinforced top and bottom, without an excessive sense of percussive attack.
So to sum up: practise inputting for velocity and mod wheel data, try out my MIDI attack thing, use EQing, convolution, compression, and layering. But most of all, think of the sorts of sounds that you want to produce and just do whatever gets you closer to your ideal.
Good luck exploring these GOSsibilities, and I'll get in touch with you in the next couple of days,
Thank you again for your reply. I'll try to try out some things in the next coming days. It's nice to know you're doing classical music too. I was trying to 'copy' the first Beethoven symphony just to practise with GPO and GOS.
Do you think layering EXP and VIB instrument would be nice to have more control over the vibrato, which I'm sometimes missing anyway in the GOS strings. By the way, where do you get the bownoise. Is it in GOS?
The bow noise should be in a file called (surprisingly) "Bow Noise.gig" which, for me, is in the "Bow -gig files" folder: it should be about 10.5 MB in size.
In reply to your query about EXP and VIB layering, I think "give it a go" is a good response to trying anything out with GOS. The library is so flexible that the realm of possibilities is vast. The only caveat at this stage would be that the modwheel will probably be assigned to control both the EXP volume and the VIB intensity, so you may want to create an alternate version of the VIB instrument, for example, and get another controller (other than the modwheel) to alter the vibrato, so that the two can be controlled independently. I think this should be easily possible using the editor, but I haven't ever bothered to try ;-). I'll also test that out soon. If that doesn't work for you, you can always clone a track and just change the modwheel information, in which case you wouldn't need to layer the instruments at all; this isn't the most elegant solution, however.
I've been away from my Gigastudio computer for a while, and may be for the next day or so too, but I'll be back in touch again fairly soon.
I have found the Grand Sustain violins, and I think they sound great! To me, they tend to be more lively than the normal LEG SUSV ones, they sound more human.
I've read one of your tutorials a while ago about mixing certain instruments, e.g. making a Grand Sustain LEG (which doesn't exist in my GOS) instrument. Can you tell me where I could find this. I'd like to have an violin instrument, based on the sound of the Grand Sustain violins, where I can control LEG, EXP, VIB and AltUpDw. How should I do this?
And Julio, I can't find the bownoise folder. Is this one of the latest updates that I've missed maybe?
Are the Cellos' Rich versions the equivant to the violins grand sustain, or do the cellos have a grand sustain brother too?