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Topic: Problem with strings

  1. #1

    Problem with strings

    So far I've been been using GPO4 as a plug-in for Sibelius 6.1, but I'm beginning to think I'm going to start doing some post-Sibelius MIDI tweaking to get things to sound better. I understand there is a LOT you can do with/to solo instruments but I'm less sure about the string ensembles. How are things like velocity, duration, etc. applied to an ensemble of violins for example? If I change Portamento does it apply to the entire ensemble en masse?

    I'm having trouble with getting a legato sound out of ensemble strings. The louder, the more choppy it sounds. Putting phrase markings (i.e., slurs) in the Sibelius score actually makes it worse - creates a very unnatural sound. The slurs apparently make the notes play at 102% the default length and (for GPO) turn on the MIDI legato control. Unfortunately, the GPO doc says seems to say GPO uses "sustain" (CC#64) rather than "legato" (CC#68) to control legato. Did I read that correctly?

    I notice that the samples in the Listening Room don't seem to suffer from the problem I'm having so I'm sure there's a way of coping with it.


  2. #2

    Re: Problem with strings

    Pat, you are absolutely correct in your assumption that you will get more control over the samples in a sequencer. I've heard some amazing produced directly from Finale, but nothing compares to the tweaking you can do in a sequencer.

    As answered in your other thread, the non-notation set of samples uses CC#64 for legato (to facilitate live playing, I guess), and the notation sample set (same samples, different programming) use CC#68 for compatibility with other vst instruments.

    Many of us here on this board start in a notation program and when the writing is complete, export just the notes to a sequencer via MIDI. Then we tweak to our hearts content.

    Others write the music and then play it into the sequencer live via a keyboard or wind controller. I'm actually a hybrid of the two approaches - playing everything but the strings in live.

    Quickly, in the non-notation set, legato (sustain pedal down), cuts off the beginning of the samples (the attack portion), so they transition smoothly. (BTW, CC#64 works like a regular sustain pedal in the non-notation samples for non-sustaining instruments, like piano).

    Hope this helps, and keep asking questions!

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