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Topic: Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

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  1. #1

    Question Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

    Hello forum!

    I've been doing some amatuer composition for a while, but I am completely new when it comes to working with programs such as GPO4! I'm attempting to import the Garritan instruments into SONAR LE, but with my limited knowledge I have absolutely no idea what to do.

    Is there anyone who would be able to provide a simple step-by-step procedure on how to get the ARIA Player and SONAR LE working together?

    Thanks-

    -Moose

    P.S- I also own Finale Notepad (unfortunately, not the full version) and Noteworthy Composer. If there are any methods for getting Garritan's instruments to work with those composition programs as well, please let me know!

  2. #2

    Re: Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

    I managed to figure out how to import the VST files, so I can now use GPO with Sonar!

    Unfortunately, something is still off. I opened an older MIDI track, intending to use the new instruments instead of my old sounds. When I finally got things playing, the track was only playing a few select notes out of what I had notated! I know this is rather vague, but does anyone know what the problem is?

    The program I am most comfortable working with is Noteworthy Composer 2. Is there any way to import the GPO4 sounds onto Noteworthy?

  3. #3

    Re: Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

    Quote Originally Posted by MightyMoose View Post
    Hello forum!

    I've been doing some amatuer composition for a while, but I am completely new when it comes to working with programs such as GPO4! I'm attempting to import the Garritan instruments into SONAR LE, but with my limited knowledge I have absolutely no idea what to do.

    Is there anyone who would be able to provide a simple step-by-step procedure on how to get the ARIA Player and SONAR LE working together?

    Thanks-

    -Moose

    P.S- I also own Finale Notepad (unfortunately, not the full version) and Noteworthy Composer. If there are any methods for getting Garritan's instruments to work with those composition programs as well, please let me know!
    I should be able to help you out, so here we go:

    Building ensembles

    The first step is to build your ensemble(s) in ARIA. Open ARIA as a standalone player. You have up to 16 slots into which you'll load whatever instrument patches you select from either the Standard or Notation GPO libraries. (The Notation patches are designed for use with a notation program such as Finale or Sibelius. However, you can also use them in Sonar, but you'll have to remember that the legato controller is CC68, not CC64.) Once you've selected the instrument patches for your ensemble, select Save as under the File menu and save the ensemble under whatever name you choose. (The saved file has the .aria extension. Also, you can save these files to any location you want. Just be sure to make a note of whatever that location is, as you will need it for loading those files into ARIA through Sonar.)

    If your version of Sonar supports more than 16 MIDI tracks, you can create more than one ARIA ensemble for use in the same project. For example, I have assembled a virtual orchestra with GPO 4 that uses five different ARIA ensembles. I use Sonar 8.5 Studio, and because it supports an unlimited number of tracks, I can run all five of those ensembles at once.

    Loading the ensembles into Sonar

    Now that you have created your ensemble(s) in ARIA, the next step to is to load it(them) into Sonar and and assign each instrument channel to its corresponding MIDI track. To do this, open the Synth Rack and add the ARIA player. Then click on the Properties button in the Synth Rack window to open the ARIA player window. In the upper left corner you'll see a bar that says "Ensemble", so click right below "Ensemble" and select Load from the roll-down menu. In the load aria preset window navigate to the folder where you saved your ensemble (.aria) file(s). (The default folder is com.Plogue.Aria.) Select the ensemble you want to load and click OK. This loads the instruments you set up for your ensemble, so now all you have to do is assign each MIDI track to the appropriate ARIA channel.

    Before I continue, I need to mention that in your list of VST instruments you'll see references to ARIA player and ARIA player Multi. The difference between the two is that the ARIA player sends all 16 instruments over a single stereo channel, while the ARIA player Multi sends over 16 channels. Therefore you'll need to make sure and select Multi for running ensembles in Sonar.

    Things get a bit more complicated if your version of Sonar supports more than 16 MIDI tracks. Returning to my virtual orchestra example, I have five instances of ARIA loaded into Sonar's synth rack. I can access each instance there and load the different ensemble files I created. In Sonar each instance is numbered, so I know that ARIA player 1 channel 1 belongs to a different instrument than ARIA player 3 channel 1. Then it becomes a matter of mapping each track's channel assignment to the channel number in the instrument's corresponding ARIA player.

    After you have your ensemble(s) loaded and track/channel assignments set, just save your Sonar project, and whenever you open it all the GPO instruments you have going in it will automatically load. Now, I should point out that ARIA has a number of settings you can change, such as EQ to adjust instrument sounds, Ambience reverb, etc. You can make those changes in ARIA through the Synth Rack in Sonar. However, they will only affect the ensemble parameters for a particular project. If you want those changes to be global (that is, the ensemble parameters will be the same for every project which uses that ensemble), you'll need to make your edits in the ARIA standalone player, resave the .aria file, and reload it into ARIA through the Sonar Synth Rack.

    As to Finale, I use Finale 2010, so unfortunately I won't be able to answer your notation program questions. All I can say is if either one or both of your notation programs support VST plug-ins they should be able to work with GPO 4 and ARIA. As to whether or not they do, and if so how to set things up, I'd suggest consulting their help documentation. There also may be some others on the forum who could guide you. And last but not least, you may want to post your questions on the Notation/Sequencing forum.

    Hope the above helped you out, at least some.

    Steve
    If you'd like to hear a couple of pieces I might actually finish someday, please visit my virtual concert hall.

  4. #4

    Re: Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

    Steve-

    Thanks very much for the info! I was able to import a MIDI file and load my ensemble instruments. However, when I pressed play, I got no sound. It appeared as if sound was being produced, but I wasn't hearing anything. I checked that the volume was on (which it was- always good to check the simple things first), and still nothing. Weird! The instruments were playing in ARIA when I assigned them originally. When I went to play them in the ARIA player after attempting to match the MIDI to the channels, there was no sound as well.

    I'm thinking I'm not properly assigning the instruments to the right channels. I know this is probably very simple, but can you inform me how to set each track to a separate instrument that's been set up in the ensemble?

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Portsmouth, Hampshire,UK
    Posts
    46

    Re: Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

    Quote Originally Posted by MightyMoose View Post
    I managed to figure out how to import the VST files, so I can now use GPO with Sonar!
    Unfortunately, something is still off. I opened an older MIDI track, intending to use the new instruments instead of my old sounds. When I finally got things playing, the track was only playing a few select notes out of what I had notated! I know this is rather vague, but does anyone know what the problem is?
    The program I am most comfortable working with is Noteworthy Composer 2. Is there any way to import the GPO4 sounds onto Noteworthy?
    Hi Moose and welcome to the Forum.

    Firstly I'm afraid there is no way of 'importing' GPO4 sounds into Noteworthy, since Noteworthy is very definitely MIDI-only.

    To use the GPO4 library with Noteworthy, you'll need first to download MIDI-OX and MIDI-Yoke (both freeware applications) from www.midiox.com . MIDI-OX is a sort of MIDI management console, while MIDI-Yoke provides 8 MIDI ports for connecting between MIDI programs (in this case between the output of Noteworthy and either the standalone Aria Player or the MIDI inputs in Sonar LE).

    Once both of the above programs are installed, power up MIDI-OX and select "Options/MIDI Devices ...". Each MIDI-Yoke supports up to 16 MIDI channels, so select - for example -Yoke 1 for input and Yoke 2 for output then "OK" the dialog. Now power up Noteworthy, select "Tools/Options ...", click on "MIDI" and add the MIDI-Yoke that you selected as the MIDI-OX input (eg Yoke 1) to the Playback Devices list on the right. You'll now need to load up your score, navigate in Noteworthy to "Tools/Score Review ..." and set MIDI Output devices in each of your score's staves to the new output port. Save your score and the Noteworthy end of the deal is complete.

    I can't advise on the Sonar route since I'm not a Sonar user (though there are many here on the Forum who are), but should you decide to use the Aria standalone player as your "host" for GPO4, power up the player and select "Tools/Preferences ...". Select the MIDI-OX output Yoke (eg Yoke 2 from the above example) as your Aria Player input device. Load up your ensemble and the playback from your Noteworthy score should now be driving the instruments loaded into your Aria Player. The MIDI channels in Aria will of course have to correspond to your score setup in Noteworthy - you can change these, if required, by clicking on the rightmost indicator on each instrument's info panel (the "lcd screen" windows at the top of Aria) and selecting the new channel from the dropdown menu.

    Once you've "run the marathon" above you should at least hear the aounds that you want from the GPO library. Noteworthy, however, uses standard MIDI controls for things like volume (Noteworthy uses Channel Volume - cc7, while GPO uses Modulation - cc1) so you'll need to setup a data map in MIDI-OX to convert these. Please PM me with an email address, if you wish, and I'll send you a copy of the map I use. It doesn't by any means cover all the controllers that GPO will respond to, but it may at least serve as a starting point - all the controllers are listed in the GPO manual and it might be a little easier to add rules to an existing map than to start one from scratch.

    On the subject of your missing notes, the only guess I can make (and it is a guess ...) is that they may be outside the range of the instrument being played. While a GM synth plays sounds from any instrument pretty much throughout the MIDI range, GPO uses real instrument samples and thus will only play within the range of the instrument sampled - anything below G below Middle C on a violin, for example, won't make a sound! The only advice that I can give there, therefore, is to check your notation against the available range of the instrument (shown as normal piano keys on the Aria player with that instrument selected). If the file "passes muster" in that respect, then try loading the file into the standalone Aria player's MIDI player and see if the notes are still missing, in case the problem is specific to Sonar.

    Finally, if you've managed to stay awake through the above , I hope it's of some help and look forward to hearing some of your productions in the Listening Room! Please don't hesitate to ask, however, if you still have problems.

    Best regards,

    Keith

  6. #6

    Re: Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

    Quote Originally Posted by MightyMoose View Post
    Steve-

    Thanks very much for the info! I was able to import a MIDI file and load my ensemble instruments. However, when I pressed play, I got no sound. It appeared as if sound was being produced, but I wasn't hearing anything. I checked that the volume was on (which it was- always good to check the simple things first), and still nothing. Weird! The instruments were playing in ARIA when I assigned them originally. When I went to play them in the ARIA player after attempting to match the MIDI to the channels, there was no sound as well.

    I'm thinking I'm not properly assigning the instruments to the right channels. I know this is probably very simple, but can you inform me how to set each track to a separate instrument that's been set up in the ensemble?
    Keith did a great job of addressing one possible cause of the problem you're having. I have a couple of other ideas:

    GPO uses the mod wheel (CC1) to control volume for the sustain instruments. However, all GPO instruments also respond to the main volume controller (CC7). Check the Event List for your MIDI tracks and see if there may be CC7 events set to 0. If so, this effectively turns the channel output off, and you'll need to either delete them or set their values appropriate to whatever the dynamic levels are supposed to be.

    Under the Options menu in Sonar, select Project. In the Project Options window click on the MIDI Out tab. If the Zero Controllers When Play Stops box is checked, uncheck it. You may already be aware of this, but I wanted to bring it to your attention just in case. (Why the heck Cakewalk ever put the Zero Controllers option in I'll never know. Personally I can't see what possible use it could have, and it just seems to confuse people.)

    As to assigning channels in Sonar, that's easy. In the Track view, right click on the little MIDI plug icon to the left of the track's name and select Track Properties. In the Track Properties window make sure the output is set to ARIA player. Then select the instrument's ARIA channel number from the Channel drop-down list. If you are running multiple instances of ARIA in your Sonar project, you'll need to set the appropriate instance as the output. For example, let's say that you have three ARIA players loaded in the Synth Rack, and you have cellos assigned to channel 15 in the third player. Your output assignment for the cello track should be 3-ARIA Multi Player 3 with the channel set to 15. If the output were set to ARIA Player 1 and it had no instrument loaded on channel 15, you would of course get no sound. I have no idea if this even applies to your current situation, but if it doesn't, I wanted to mention it anyway in case you ever find yourself needing to build larger ensembles with multiple ARIA players.

    I hope you'll find a solution to your problem from what Keith and myself are suggesting. If not, we've got a real head-scratcher here, and I don't know what else could be going on.

    Steve
    If you'd like to hear a couple of pieces I might actually finish someday, please visit my virtual concert hall.

  7. #7

    Re: Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

    I think I've found my problem, if not the solution.

    It's not a problem of range, as I tested it by importing a scale. I realized when I opened the Aria player that the mod wheel was set all the way down. When I attempted to raise it, it returned to the bottom level.

    This likely explains why it shows the sounds as playing, but I'm getting no sound. Any ideas on how to possibly fix this? Are there any tools or guides on using the mod wheel that I should be looking at? I pawed through the manual and found no explanation for this problem.

    Allow me to add that, for right now, all I'm looking for is the use of the more natural-sounding instruments. I'll work out getting the proper timbre and dynamics later. Is there a way to upload a MIDI I have created in another program directly into the Aria player itself?

  8. #8

    Re: Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

    Quote Originally Posted by MightyMoose View Post
    It's not a problem of range, as I tested it by importing a scale. I realized when I opened the Aria player that the mod wheel was set all the way down. When I attempted to raise it, it returned to the bottom level.
    If this is happening when you have ARIA open in Sonar's Synth Rack, go to Project under the Options menu. In the Project Options window click on the MIDI Out tab. If the Zero Controllers When Play Stops box is checked, uncheck it. If you've already done that, or you do it and the problem doesn't go away, then I don't know what the heck is going on.

    Is there a way to upload a MIDI I have created in another program directly into the Aria player itself?
    Nope, the ARIA Player is just that -- a sample player that executes instructions from MIDI data received through a DAW or notation program. There's no way to upload a MIDI file directly into ARIA.

    Steve
    If you'd like to hear a couple of pieces I might actually finish someday, please visit my virtual concert hall.

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Portsmouth, Hampshire,UK
    Posts
    46

    Re: Help with SONAR LE and GPO4 ARIA Player

    Quote Originally Posted by MightyMoose View Post
    I think I've found my problem, if not the solution.

    It's not a problem of range, as I tested it by importing a scale. I realized when I opened the Aria player that the mod wheel was set all the way down. When I attempted to raise it, it returned to the bottom level.

    This likely explains why it shows the sounds as playing, but I'm getting no sound. Any ideas on how to possibly fix this? Are there any tools or guides on using the mod wheel that I should be looking at? I pawed through the manual and found no explanation for this problem.

    Allow me to add that, for right now, all I'm looking for is the use of the more natural-sounding instruments. I'll work out getting the proper timbre and dynamics later. Is there a way to upload a MIDI I have created in another program directly into the Aria player itself?
    Hi Moose,

    I suspect that Steve's suggestion above should get you up and running with Sonar, since I've seen a number of threads on the topic in various forums. As Steve says, the logic behind this "feature" is perplexing to say the least.

    On the subject of MIDI playback by other means, it's not very noticeable (or well promoted for that matter) but there is actually a MIDI player built into the standalone Aria player. The controls are rudimentary (just Play, Stop, Rewind and Load) and can be found on the bottom left of the standalone Aria's main console. The only button you'll see enabled there is the Load button - just click on it for a "File Open" dialog and the transport buttons will be enabled as soon as your MIDI file is loaded. Remember, of course, to set up your instruments and MIDI channels in the Aria console!

    Incidentally, MIDI-OX (see my last post) also has a built in MIDI player, from which it can re-map MIDI data "on the fly". If I recall correctly, however, NWC's default action is to send a cc7 value of 127 (full channel volume) for each channel used at the start of a score and use velocity throughout for dynamics unless overriden by the user. MIDI-OX, together with the MIDI-Yoke, is however pretty much a "must have" if you're intending to drive Aria from Noteworthy - whether as a plugin in Sonar or as a standalone player.

    Hope that helps,

    Keith

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