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Topic: "QLegato Explained"

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  1. #1

    "QLegato Explained"

    I have posted this explanation of QLegato from Nick Phoenix from the EW forum for those interested.

    "Qlegato is a technique used to create legato samples. How it is done depends on the instrument. For strings it is done in one of 2 ways depending on whether it is a section or a solo and other factors such as playing style. 11 Violins example: The group is instructed to play a note softly for 2 bars, lock into pitch and upon cue, to smoothly change the bow direction and jump up in volume slightly. In editing, we remove the first 2 bars and have a legato note. It is legato because it is connected to the last note. It just happens to be the same note. This gives us no reverberant interference. The resulting sample is radically different from anything that can be played from silence, because the players do not dig in to the note as much, they do not speed up the bow, and they do not bend the pitch. This is also radically different from what other developers have done when they simple cut off the attack. Qlegato has an attack. It's just a real legato attack playing the same note into itself. Solo strings can easily have Qlegato samples created by cutting each time there is a bow change. This works as long as the player is good at masking bow changes. IF they are, then the resulting samples sound smooth and flowing. With woodwinds and brass, the player simply puts a microscopic blip or pause in the note and we cut there. Once again, the attack is radically different, because the player doesn't really stop playing and the blast of wind and the mouth position, pitch bending etc.. associated with the start of a note is absent. That's it!"

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: "QLegato Explained"

    Quote Originally Posted by Craig_L
    I have posted this explanation of QLegato from Nick Phoenix from the EW forum for those interested.

    "Qlegato is a technique used to create legato samples. How it is done depends on the instrument. For strings it is done in one of 2 ways depending on whether it is a section or a solo and other factors such as playing style. 11 Violins example: The group is instructed to play a note softly for 2 bars, lock into pitch and upon cue, to smoothly change the bow direction and jump up in volume slightly. In editing, we remove the first 2 bars and have a legato note. It is legato because it is connected to the last note. It just happens to be the same note. This gives us no reverberant interference. The resulting sample is radically different from anything that can be played from silence, because the players do not dig in to the note as much, they do not speed up the bow, and they do not bend the pitch. This is also radically different from what other developers have done when they simple cut off the attack. Qlegato has an attack. It's just a real legato attack playing the same note into itself. Solo strings can easily have Qlegato samples created by cutting each time there is a bow change. This works as long as the player is good at masking bow changes. IF they are, then the resulting samples sound smooth and flowing. With woodwinds and brass, the player simply puts a microscopic blip or pause in the note and we cut there. Once again, the attack is radically different, because the player doesn't really stop playing and the blast of wind and the mouth position, pitch bending etc.. associated with the start of a note is absent. That's it!"
    That's interesting. I don't think they've ever actually explained what they did, so it has never come up for discussion.

    That would explain why the effect does not give the same feel as the VSL methodology, but I agree that it's probably the best approach they can take in a hall-recorded product. It buys you a variant of attack, which is a further level of modeling up from the original GOS "bridge sample" methodology. But it stops short of capturing specific note-to-note transfer artifacts as VSL does. What it really represents is more of a legato repetition, although a very non-accented, cloaked one. Still, anything goes in sampling as long as it delivers a needed musical result, and this is a good method.

    That also explains why it is a bit more pleasing result with the ensemble strings than with solo brass or woodwinds. The artifacts that you get from note to note in brass/woodwind legato are very specific, and are defined by the physical properties of each instrument. Without that, there is no "slurred" effect. You miss it in the strings, but not quite as much (at least not on a straight legato).

    It's interesting that this was discussed. For my part, I wish we could roll back the clock to about four or five years ago, when this forum could serve as more of a think tank. It has gotten so commercial and competitive between sample developers that we have lost that aspect of the community altogether. Que Sera Sera...

  3. #3
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    Re: "QLegato Explained"

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce A. Richardson
    For my part, I wish we could roll back the clock to about four or five years ago, when this forum could serve as more of a think tank.
    You certainly seem to have stumped folks with that one

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    Re: "QLegato Explained"

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce A. Richardson
    I wish we could roll back the clock to about four or five years ago, when this forum could serve as more of a think tank. It has gotten so commercial and competitive between sample developers that we have lost that aspect of the community altogether.
    The original "bridge sample"legato of GOS came about from brainstorming on the forum as have many other ideas and innovations since. Northern Sounds still serves as an idea breeding-ground for this developer. As far as commercialism and competition, for the most part (except for just a few exceptions) developers get along, respect each other and sometimes collaborate. Most understand it is a big world out there and plenty of pie and ideas to go around.

    Gary Garritan

  5. #5

    Re: "QLegato Explained"

    Quote Originally Posted by Garritan
    for the most part (except for just a few exceptions) developers get along, respect each other and sometimes collaborate. Most understand it is a big world out there and plenty of pie and ideas to go around.

    Gary Garritan
    Thank you for consistently and hearteningly being one such developer. It is always a great feeling to see developers congratulating one another here, and saddening when we read (here or elsewhere) accusations or insults instead.

  6. #6

    Smile Re: "QLegato Explained"

    There was an interesting post on another forum about QLegato from Jose Herring re QLegato. Some may find this useful as I did.

    "I actually think the qlegato approach is quite brilliant though mis named. You've actually captured quite a beautiful leggiero attack which imo is quite useful. I think that if people treat it as such they'll have much more success with this articulation.

    I think for samples this qleg could be much more useful. Slurred attacks in actual performance are most of the time phrase marks that players may often put a slight tongue or bow change on anyway to get more expression. As important as the VSL legato is to releastic solo playing I find it really unrealistic in ensemble playing (except for the fhorn ensemble which sounds so close to a real german fhorn section it's quite scarey). But for the day to day playing only a few notes at a time are really slurred or legato. Most of the really connected playing is leggiero in my experience even if there is a slur over say a few bars usually you'll put in light articulations here and there.

    So I really don't understand the complaints either way (other than the god awful price of the cube ) about either qleg or legato. It's clear to see that they are two different things a that both are necessary and useful. But to tell you the truth I don't use much the legato string ensemble pathces of VSL because I really don't think that they sound that natural. But for solo instrumental both VSL and qleg are legit. And for ensemble I actually think that qleg may have an edge if used with the understanding that it's a leggiero attack that's been captured.

    Jose"

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