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Topic: theremin please!

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  1. #1

    theremin please!

    dear mr. garritan, please tell me there will be a genuine Concert theremin in the Advanced Gpo , i have been looking for a authentic sounding theremin for ages now, all the emulations and synth attempts doesnt sound convincing, it would be sooo great!!! thanx

    keeping my fingers crossed!

  2. #2

    Re: theremin please!

    A sampled theremin isn't really going to work. There are two options: modeling, and the real thing. If the modeled versions haven't worked out for you, consider getting a real one. There are some modern ones that sound great and aren't terribly expensive. My friend got one a few years ago, and it sounds pretty cool.

    -JF

  3. #3

    Re: theremin please!

    hey.
    well i have createt several theremin patches myself over the years , but the whole point was to have it in the context of GPO.
    and to have a more authentic sounding one, not just some vitual analog emulation.

    why wouldnt it work to sample a theremin i wonder?
    with adjustable portamento and other various controls, it could well be done quite realistic i would think?
    obviusly i cannot play a real theremin, hence the point of a sampled one.

    if one could ,say , multisample the basic waveform and capture its tonal spectrum , it could be offcourse recreated to act in a similar manner as a real one inside gpo? at least i dont see why not.

    anyway, just a suggestion , i still keep my fingers crossed.

  4. #4

    Re: theremin please!

    Quote Originally Posted by psy

    why wouldnt it work to sample a theremin i wonder?
    with adjustable portamento and other various controls, it could well be done quite realistic i would think?
    The portamento is your problem. Samples can only reproduce the pitch they were sampled at accurately. Theremin is, by its nature, nothing BUT changes in pitch, over time, with few breaks. It's as unfriendly an instrument for regular sampling as one could conceive. Now the morphing process they are using for the Strad might help matters, but still, getting total control over the rate of portamento in playing could be a problem. The best way to do a Theremin is get an ocsilator and control it from something.

    Edit- wait, maybe that's not true. The Theremin waveform is so simple that maybe varying the pitch of a sample WOULD emulate the sound of varying the pitch of an ocsilator just fine. Thoughts, anyone??

  5. #5
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    Re: theremin please!

    Quote Originally Posted by psy
    dear mr. garritan, please tell me there will be a genuine Concert theremin in the Advanced Gpo , i have been looking for a authentic sounding theremin for ages now, all the emulations and synth attempts doesnt sound convincing, it would be sooo great!!! thanx

    keeping my fingers crossed!
    A Theremin is something we are considering. I onced owned one but had to sell it for the sake of my marriage. Don't know why my wife didn't appreciate loud Outer Limits type sounds in the middle of the night.

    The unique tone of the original theremins was in part the result of coupling between the pitch heterodyne oscillators. (Are you with me so far?) Go here for an explanation. There are also other factors in the circuitry of a classic theremin that adds to the unique tone and maybe that's why synth attempts don't have the distinctive tone of an original.

    Why not get a real theremin - or build your own! Moog Music sells a build-it-yourself Theremin kit with a pre-built circuit board listing for $349.

    Gary Garritan

  6. #6

    Re: theremin please!

    Quote Originally Posted by psy
    dear mr. garritan, please tell me there will be a genuine Concert theremin in the Advanced Gpo , i have been looking for a authentic sounding theremin for ages now, all the emulations and synth attempts doesnt sound convincing, it would be sooo great!!! thanx

    keeping my fingers crossed!
    Did you check the Theremin VSTs at www.kvraudio.com? I have tried some of them some time ago and can remember I found at least one of them quite convincing...But then, I have never really heard a real one.......

  7. #7

    Re: theremin please!

    Quote Originally Posted by Garritan
    There are also other factors in the circuitry of a classic theremin that adds to the unique tone and maybe that's why synth attempts don't have the distinctive tone of an original.
    Still, given such an explanation, why can't such a waveform be accurately duplicated via waveshaping? Is it merely that nobody in the software world has spent the time on it? Or that simply emulating the sound is pointless without a wonderfully kinetic control interface to utilize it?

    Then again, maybe the problem is that the cheese-appeal of the Theremin attracts a small group of insanely faithful fanatics, but mere indifference (and sometimes ridicule!) from the rest of the world. Not much of a market in between!

    - m
    Free MFX and other plugins: http://www.TenCrazy.com/
    Markleford's music: http://www.markleford.com/music/

  8. #8

    Re: theremin please!

    Theremins essentially consist of a simple generated sine wave with capacitance controllable pitch and amplitude. Both are controlled over a very wide range. This is a perfect example of a device that falls under the purview of synthesis, not sampling. There are several technical reasons that most sample engines are not ideal for this purpose, one having to do with common transposition limits that make the creation of such an instrument awkward at best. Fortunately, there are already many synth options available - some of them free downloads. Here's an example: www.kvraudio.com/get/26.html

    Additional elements that bear on the sound of the original instrument are related to the tube amplification electronics (which can produce significant amounts of 2nd harmonic distortion) and the type of speaker/speaker cabinet used in the device to generate the sound. I would suggest using a "tube" distortion plugin to help simulate the former and an "amplifier-speaker cabinet" plugin for the latter. Theremins were most often recorded on soundstages so a bit of appropriately chosen room sound should help too. Lots of things to play around with, if you're interested.

    When Gary said that we were considering the Theremin he meant for some vague, possible future project, not GPO, or even GPO Advanced. Just thought I'd clear that up. In any case, if we ever did decide to do this it would most likely be done in synthesis, not sampling.

    Tom

    P.S. With the convenience of the various plugin architectures there is no compelling reason to try to get everything into a single plugin (like GPO). Various plugins for synthesis, especially, should co-exist well with GPO - up to the limits of your CPU. Adding another plugin to your project's palette is just a click or two away.

  9. #9
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    Re: theremin please!

    Quote Originally Posted by Markleford
    Then again, maybe the problem is that the cheese-appeal of the Theremin attracts a small group of insanely faithful fanatics, but mere indifference (and sometimes ridicule!) from the rest of the world. Not much of a market in between!
    Yes, precisely - it's the cheese-appeal

  10. #10

    Re: theremin please!

    Quote Originally Posted by Markleford
    Or that simply emulating the sound is pointless without a wonderfully kinetic control interface to utilize it?
    The two capacitance bars are certainly one of the unique things about this instrument (anyone who has tried one will know the fun of moving your hands in mid air and having the instrument respond - as if by magic). It would indeed be nice if an interface that would translate to MIDI data could replicate this experience. It would be very cool.

    Tom

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