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Topic: Advanced Orchestra help......

  1. #1

    Advanced Orchestra help......

    Okay...I just purchased Gigastudio 96 and the Advanced Orchestra String Library. Now how do I go about using them in my music...I\'m a newbie. Any books or sites out there on this? I can\'t even figure out how to get a realistic legato line using the violin section...how do you add vibrato with key dimension controlling the mod wheel? I have many more questions...please feel free to offer any suggestions, specifically learning to sequence string samples so that they don\'t sound like I\'m playing them from a keyboard.

    I\'m using Sonar right now for sequencing.

  2. #2

    Re: Advanced Orchestra help......

    Welcome to the wonderful world of gigasampler! Unfortunately the world of sequenced orchestral music isn\'t quite as problem free as you might have thought. Getting realistic legato parts is nearly impossible, especially using the Advanced Orchestra library. The only advice I can give you is to learn it the hard way. There aren\'t any FAQs as far as sequencing orchestral music goes. At least not to my knowledge. Just use your ears and learn your sequencer properly. Listen to what other users do, and perhaps you\'ll pick up a few techniques from them. Because that\'s what it\'s all about. Technique. You will soon discover that you spend more time dealing with the technical issues involved in orchestral sequencing, rather than the creative composition process. This is one of the many drawbacks of orchestral midi music.

    Adding vibrato using the modwheel or whatever controller used to trigger the LFO is, imho a waste of time. It\'s gonna sound very artificial. If I remember correctly there are several vibrato programs for each string instrument in the Advanced Orchestra Library. Use those instead.

    There might be some books on orchestral sequencing. Try searching at www.amazon.com

    Feel free to ask questions! Just keep in mind that there isn\'t a simple guideline, and that every user has his/her unique technique.


  3. #3

    Re: Advanced Orchestra help......

    Jsims, if you need a quiet legato line, the \"soft sustains\" sting patch in Advanced Orchestra is pretty good.

  4. #4

    Re: Advanced Orchestra help......


    Yes indeed, it is very, very difficult to make realistically sounding orchestra even with Gigasampler. I\'ve been dealing with electronic orchestra for years now and still feel like I am just at the beginning.

    I found only one single book on MIDI Orchestration which, however, was written around 3 b.G. (before Gigasampler)and therefore reflects posibilities available at that time. It nevertheless containts useful informations and tips and makes a good reading for a start. It is
    Paul Gilreath: The Guide To MIDI Orchestration. I bought mine at http://www.musicbooksplus.com/ for cca $25+pp.

    As regards key switching in AO it works like this: some of the keys at the bottom of the keyboard (usually from C1 up) work as a switches between different articualations. You can see which keys are used when you click on a tag Loaded instruments: at the bottom there is a keyboard with colour indications. The AO booklet has charts which exactly describe which key switches to which articulation.
    So for example in violin section XFD if you press the E1 key on your keyboard (or in the Loaded instruments window)you will get detache sound, as soon as you press C1 you can play sustained sound etc.
    I hope this helps.


  5. #5

    Re: Advanced Orchestra help......

    I have some tips:

    1) Lengthen all but the last note of a legato line so that they overlap. Shorten the last note if appropriate. Use a non-legato patch on the first note and a legato patch on the others. Also, reduce the velocity of all but the first note in the line. These are tricks, but they do help.

    2) Blend a little solo violin/viola/cello in
    with the section sound. The AO solo violin espressivo is particularly good for this since has a good bit of vibrato and add that touch of \"silk\" to the sound.

    To see whether any of this is worth doing, try listening to the last movement of my orchestral suite at:

    which uses these techniques on AO strings.


    Richard Cox.
    http://www.mp3.com/stations/richard_cox_-_dance_suite http://www.mp3.com/stations/richard_cox_-_lotr_suite http://www.mp3.com/stations/g_and_s_at_mp3com http://www.mp3.com/stations/richard_cox_-_stuff_by_others

  6. #6

    Re: Advanced Orchestra help......

    I\'d advise that you write your music based around the samples and not try to force them around pre-written orchestral music. Nothing sounds worse than or more fake to my ears than conventional orchestral string writing being played out on samplers (sorry but strings cannot currently pull off col legno battuto etc!).

    There are of course exceptions, but the best approach is to listen to and be influenced by the samples, work around their strengths, and then compose the music. It is still possible that way to have a more authentic sounding score and, if you use your knowledge of conventional orchestration, re-write this (as opposed to merely print the midi parts in sibelius or whatever) so that it is playable and pretty much the same when played by a real orchestra. This isn\'t, IMO, a sell-out but rather just what the great composers used to do when forced to compose works where the instruments or some other technical element forced them to either rethink their conventional methods, or even when they imposed restrictions on themselves of some sort.

    Samples are only approximations of the real McCoy. Use technology to its advantages, just as composers such as Hans Zimmer do, and don\'t be afraid to use unorthodox means to get the desired result. The AO strings have some useful sounds in them but they often work best when blended with other string samples, or even synth strings believe it or not.

  7. #7

    Re: Advanced Orchestra help......

    Thanks everyone for the advice. I\'ve been tweaking the string sections in the editor for a little bit and have had a little bit of progress with making them suit my needs.
    Somebody really needs to write a book on Gigastudio/editor. I for one would welcome shelling out money for a book, rather than scouring the net for info.
    Thanks again, this board is great for info.

  8. #8

    Re: Advanced Orchestra help......

    TJ, that\'s some of the best advise. You said it well. For years, I plowed ahead, forcing samples to conform to something \"external.\" Then I learned to work with what I have. Let the samples and the sample collections direct the composition (to a large extent). The results are more believeable, musical, listenable.

    Thanks, Clueless

  9. #9

    Re: Advanced Orchestra help......

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size=\"1\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by clueless:
    TJ, that\'s some of the best advise. You said it well. For years, I plowed ahead, forcing samples to conform to something \"external.\" Then I learned to work with what I have. Let the samples and the sample collections direct the composition (to a large extent). The results are more believeable, musical, listenable.

    Thanks, Clueless

    Its a shame that we have to do that, I found that the AO strings aren\'t good at powerful string passages (action string passages for example), they sound too fluffy.

    With regards to samples in general, (and a bit off topic)
    I\'ve been plowing through catalogues trying to find NON loop and phrase libraries! There is too much unoriginality with all these loops and phrases (there is only so much a person can do with a loop or phrase). I think construction kits like this are bad for music, and its not composing...its mixing, and it should not be thought overwise. Btw, i recently heard a loop of synth and drums in graeme revells \'Eaters of the dead\' score, and the very same loop used in a James newton howard score (i cannot remember which one). Obviously they are very good composers and rarely use loops and phrases. But its a shame.

    No offence intended to loops and phrases users, i just cannot understand why peoples use them...the whole point and enjoyment of composing is to do everything yourself. Not pinch someone elses work.


  10. #10

    Re: Advanced Orchestra help......

    If you have heard what my electric bass libraries (http://www.scarbee.com ) can do with articulations/expression, then imagine if a similar thing was done with strings - the sample/programming technique could be adapted totally. Then I believe we would get very realistic string sounds. But it will be a major job - especially with a large orchestre.

    And about the vibrato - I thing the future must be that we find a way to create an artificial vibrato. Recorded vibrato is not flexibel enough - that is my opinion. This is surely a job for Nemesys. I have started a thread about this on \"solutions\" and also on the club for sample developers, where we already have good results in comunicating with the GigaStudio programmers.


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