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Topic: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

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  1. #1

    Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    Giga, Kontakt, Halion, etc are fine sample *playback* engines. I'm looking for something a bit different. I want something that actually *samples* live audio, and then can be used to play it back. And I'd like to be able to trigger the sampling and playback from a MIDI message, or by some other external means - I don't want to be working with mouse clicks.

    You know how you can run a guitar through a delay box, play a melody phrase and immediately play a harmony phrase over the top of it? I'd like to be able to do that sort of thing, but with finer control over what gets recorded, and when it plays back.

    Stand alone, DXi, VST, whatever. No disk streaming needed. Anybody know of such a product?

    Thanks!

    -JF

  2. #2

    Re: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    How about this?

    http://www.rolandus.com/products/det...&ProdID=SP-404

    It has a MIDI IN port, and the storage media is CompactFlash.
    It looks very convenient for a quick job.

    Sorry if it's not a rig which you are searching for.

    Akihito

  3. #3
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    I built a four channel wild "looper" sampler for Reaktor, which I use all the time for live work. It loops from either the synths I have in a particular ensemble or from microphone/line input.

    I would be happy to send you the tool if you have Reaktor, or it's extremely easy to build whatever you want for yourself. This is one of the reasons I adore Reaktor. If no one else builds the "thing" you want, you can just do it yourself.

    In the hardware department, there is a new version of the Jam Man, and there is also the very nice "Boomerang" by one of my compadres here in Dallas. Both are very cool pedal type loopers. Add a Whammy Pedal to a Boomerang, and you're in hog heaven, if you want your functionality to be more stomp-box oriented. Or, you could easily model the Boomerang functionality in Reaktor, and assign MIDI controllers for the live control aspects.

  4. #4

    Re: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    I'd like to second Bruce's suggestion. You really can't go wrong with Reaktor for this kind of work (or any kind of work, for that matter). The latest version (v5) is rock-solid, and it's very CPU-efficient if you use the new core technology, so it's perfect for live situations.

    Another program to look at would be Max/MSP from Cycling 74.
    http://www.cycling74.com
    It's very popular for this kind of thing, especially in the electronic community. It's not as easy to use as Reaktor, though. More low-level. A bit more "academic", I guess.
    They also have a product called RadiaL, which is specifically designed for live sampling/looping. It might be worth checking out.

    -------------------
    -Andreas Bjorck-
    Last edited by andreas; 08-10-2005 at 10:31 PM. Reason: edited for spelling

  5. #5

    Re: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    Reaktor may just be the ticket. I've wanted it for years, but just haven't parted with the money. I'll look at Max/MSP as well. The 30 day demo should fill me in. I'm more interested in flexibility than ease of use. The key will be the ability to record lots of loops and then be able to put them together in a specific way, based on a preset sequence.

    An example of the kind of thing one could do is to teach people how to construct a 12-bar blues. A cue/click track could say "bass, tonic", and you'd record a tonic bar or two of bass. It would then say "sub-dominant", "dominant", "turn around", then would be able to stitch the deal together. Add more layers for other instruments, and you have a looped (though soulless, mechanical) blues.

    I'm not looking to be the blues nerd king though. I'm thinking of putting together more of an ambient, filmic, performance art thing. Being able to bend and tweak the loops to give them forward motion will be a great thing. (I had figured that I might be using Bidule and VSTs, rather than doing it inside Reaktor/MSP.)

    Thanks for the leads. Bruce, if I get Reaktor, I'll bump this thread and ask for your looper file.

    -JF

  6. #6

    Re: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    Devine Machine offer Live Sync Recorder and One Shot Recorder.. as playback devices, they're not all that capable, but they do serve as a good "sampling front end" for other playback software.
    Angus F. Hewlett, CEO
    FXpansion Audio [www.fxpansion.com]

  7. #7

    Re: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    Jon

    A bit down the road I'm considering some similar sorts of experiments. From what I've read (no direct experience) Reaktor and Max/MSP sound very interesting and sophisticated. Another class of program that focuses on constructing and tweaking loops includes things like Ableton Live, Project 5, and similar systems. The reviews I've read sound somewhat similar to your description of what you want to do. I am particularly interested in Project 5 for reasons that are extraneous to yours (I am looking for a good non-copy protected sample player and Project 5 includes one that sounds interesting).

    In six months or so I'll have a more informed opinion but in the interest of completeness I thought the live performance loop oriented systems should be mentioned however sketchy my current knowledge of them.

    Best wishes

    Chet

  8. #8
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    Quote Originally Posted by JonFairhurst
    Reaktor may just be the ticket. I've wanted it for years, but just haven't parted with the money.

    (I had figured that I might be using Bidule and VSTs, rather than doing it inside Reaktor/MSP.)

    Thanks for the leads. Bruce, if I get Reaktor, I'll bump this thread and ask for your looper file.

    -JF
    I have not yet tried Bidule, but that's certainly an option I had not considered. It seems to be designed towards experimental uses more than most hosts.

    What you're describing could definitely be put together in Reaktor, especially if you have a good affinity for engineering/programming. I don't, but I can still throw together some interesting environments.

    The looper I described is very simple, just four two-minute "loop containers" which can be mixed, stopped, restarted, or recorded over. I have yet to add more of the esoterica that a Boomerang provides, reversal, etc. The loops can be recorded any length, basically, there's just a momentary "button" that puts it into record mode, and when the button is released it immediately starts playback of the loop. Crude, but effective when performing live.

    The only thing I have not worked out well is the logic of keeping things muted until a loop is actually playing back, so I need to get into the design and add some logic for that. I just work around it by keeping the output volume down until I have recorded a loop. This works for the band I play in, which is a total improvisation thing. No right or wrong, thankfully.

    Yes, let me know and I'll be happy to save off a copy for you. You can find it in the Reaktor User Library, too, as "Bruce's Looper."

  9. #9

    Re: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    I've got Sampletank 2, and it's brilliant. Sample playback with almost infinite scope for manipulating sounds. It also acts as a very powerful, and intuitive sampler. Which reminds me - I need to start making use of it and recording loads of multisamples myself...

  10. #10

    Re: Are there any true SAMPLERS out there?

    Roland (or Boss) makes a small 300 buck sampler, I almost bought it several years back, I've seen it been used live and it's pretty intuitive for that kinda stuff.
    Brain Edwards

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