I was using Vstack for a while but it doesn't follow tempo changes. (I have DP on a MAc, and several PCs which is why I need to use a VST host.
I heard FORTE (Brainspawn) follows tempo changes so I'm trying it out.
It's a nice program with a different feel and look from Vstack of course. And it does follow tempo but here's a question....
1)When Forte is enabled to follow external clock / tempo: it follows it but (and I'll use Stormdrum Intakt as the example) the intakt tempo indicates it is fluctuating +/- 1 BPM. Is this to be expected? (It uses midi clock). I guess I was expecting to LOCK ON, DEAD ON and not fluctuate at all.
2) When it encounters an instant tempo change (EG bar 1 was 60BPM, bar 5 is 130BPM) at bar 5 the tempo knob in intakt swoops up to the new tempo. (SWOOPS!) What I mean is it's gradual (though fast), not INSTANT. Therefore the loops get out of sync if you're playing a loop across the bar that has the tempo change. I was expecting that knob to SNAP up to the new tempo instantly. Is this normal? (Its not desirable!!)
3) IS forte the best VST host in terms of tempo changes? (As far as I know its the ONLY one!). Even with the above behaviour its better than VSTack which doesn't follow tempo at all (last time I looked, users have requested this feature but never got it).
I'm afraid all of the points you brought up about Forte and tempo changes are normal for this host. I've been using Forte for over a year now, and it's far from perfect. And very slow to be updated! Hint Hint if your listening guys!
Multiple outs and a more instantaneous midi clock follow would be great additions.
Have not tried the virtual mixing console to see how it performs.
Too bad about VStack. A missed opportunity for our sync community!
Robert, I spoke to the people at Brainspawn about this at some point. They explained that Forte is constantly averaging the incoming TC, which is supposed to be pretty accurate. But obviously not good enough yet. I think a new version is in the pipeline. The biggest problem I had was with Absynth, where the pitch actually wavers around because of the wavering sync - & therefore was not useable. Good guys though & really trying to help. They were very surprised when I first told them that all of us composer types were counting on their product becuase of Vsync's failings. Let's see what happens...
I'm glad this topic came up. I've been looking into VST hosts as well. V-Stack just won't cut it without tempo sync. Also, who knows the future of V-stack with Yamaha buying Steinberg.
I used forte and noticed the same thing that Robert did. I tried the demo of Spin Audio's Virtual Mixing Console. But I couldn't even get it set up to work. I kept getting an ASIO error. But I did notice in their MIDI settings window an option to sync tempo to MIDI and something about integers that made me think they have any option to allow the MIDI sync do abrupt changes.
If anyone can get this to work, let me know how. I tried e-mailing their support but they haven't been very responsive.
Update on SpinAudio VMC. It was unfair to say they were unresponsive. I sent them an e-mail yesterday and they got back to me this morning. They have been very helpful in trying to get VMC working for me.
I have it working now, but I'm still having some set up issues in regard to word clock. BUT I think this program is worth checking out. It's not as simple as Forte. But it's got some cool features and the MIDI routing is a little more flexible for controlling software synths.
However, to get back to the subject of this thread. I'm not sure that the problem isn't Intakt and not the VST host syncing.
I tried an example with Intakt and first I recorded a loop @ 120BPM into a ProTools session on my Mac. Then I recorded a loop @ 100 BPM and then spliced them together. On an aux track I fed Intakt into the ProTools session live with an abrupt tempo change from 120 to 100 bpm at the same point as the edit point in the audio loop track. After the tempo change the loops hardly lined up at all. A complete mess.
When I used the same loop on my Mac in ProTools as an RTAS plug-in the same thing happened. Very messy.
But, I did the same test using Stylus RMX as an RTAS plug-in within ProTools and it worked beautifully. I haven't loaded Stylus onto my PC yet but it will be interesting to see if it works.
Thanks Shadow, but I wonder if Stylus RMX worked better because its GROOVE CONTROL based....the grooves are slices so every slice is in sync with teh tempo. Perhaps that's why it syncs som much better?
I was using Stylus RMX in Groove Menu mode. So I think so I think it's a fair comparison. There was one MIDI key being held down across a tempo change. I'm not sure how the inner workings of the software work so perhaps it is still playing back slices, but doesn't intakt do that as well?
Regardless, I have since loaded RMX on my PC and it too failed the test with Forte AND VMC. So the problem is primarily with the VST hosts. (Although, Intakt failed the test even as an RTAS plug-in in a protools session.) I'm not sure this is something any VST host could do. MIDI clock just isn't that accurate. Maybe the only way is when MIDI is internal like sending MIDI clock to a plug-in within the sequencer host.
I will have to try Midi over Lan. So you mean if you use RMX in groove mode and hold down one note to trigger a loop and the loop continues over a tempo change RMX will stay in sync?
I could see how in slice mode only the first couple of beats would be off, but it would catch up pretty quick and resync. But I couldn't get it to work with Intakt or RMX. Even if I retriggered the loop at the tempo change. The first couple of beats swoop down or up to the tempo, like Robert said, so it doesn't work.