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Topic: Quinn Mason: Symphony No. 4-Part 1

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  1. #1

    Quinn Mason: Symphony No. 4-Part 1

    NOT READY YET (symphony no. 4 is not ready for the world)
    Last edited by Symphonynumbertwo; 05-11-2013 at 02:08 AM. Reason: NOT READY YET (symphony no. 4 is not ready for the world)

  2. #2

    Re: Quinn Mason: Symphony No. 4-Part 1

    Hi, while its not the style of music I would normally sit and listen to, I found your rendering extremely well done in places. Musically it's not my thing, so sorry, let me focus a bit on the rendering.

    A couple of things did jar, like the flute at 2:20 (machine-gun effect), and also starting around 4:10 - I don't think the samples can maintain that repeating percussion etc. without sounding like a stuck backing track. Not your fault, working with samples can be limiting sometimes. Not sure a real player could maintain that either way - seems to be a long passage to maintain that intensity - but I'm no expert at all on what players can or can't do.

    During this part, when the high brass is playing, there is some distortion on the trumpets. The cut of the percussion and return to the flute was a welcome relief - but musically, that could well be the point of that passage?

    There's more distortion popping in around 20 minutes - trumpets again.

    I found that if you convert to mp3 when your audio wave is hitting the 0.0db mark (not clipping) - then the converted file will clip. Some headroom before conversion to the mp3 is needed, about -0.5db should do it (if that is why the clipping is occurring). Clipping could be in the wav. I find a limiter works wonders to prevent such things.
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  3. #3

    Re: Quinn Mason: Symphony No. 4-Part 1

    It's a somber, perhaps even bleak mood that Part 1 of your Symphony conveys, Quinn. I imagine much of what you were feeling at the time of composition has come through in this subtle opening movement. It makes me curious how the Symphony develops from here, and I trust you'll be sharing the rest of it with us here in The Listening Room.

    Graham has given you excellent feedback about the rendering. It's a very important point that MP3s come out louder than the original .wav masters. When you make the compressed MP3 copy, you have to routinely lower the volume a bit to avoid that grating digital clipping noise. But, as Graham also pointed out, it's possible that you have clipping in some tracks in the master, in which case a new rendering would be needed.

    Since you've indicated that you're goal is to make "...virtual instruments...sound real..." I want to encourage you to add some DAW software to your production methods. Reaper is the best low priced program available. With it, and any other recording program, you would be able to work your instruments more thoroughly, avoiding the "machine gun effect" which crops up in this recording every time there are sections with repeated notes. The flute passage at 2:20 is problematic, as Graham mentioned. And the long percussion rolls are even more of a problem - they come out sounding like some sort of mechanical sound effect, like a sped up washing machine, rather than instruments.

    The problem with those kinds of passages is that without a great deal of editing, the triggering of articulations in a notation program just can't produce natural sounding results.

    I've quickly cooked up a low rolling Tympani file in Sonar to demonstrate how much more satisfactorily you'd be able to use the same musical idea, but have it sound more natural. This is just me playing the two octaves of Tympani notes, then shrinking the length of the MIDI clip so the result is faster than I was able to play:

    Long low Tympani roll

    One of the biggest problems with your Tympani roll is that only one sample is being triggered over and over. But there are two samples available for each note in GPO's Tympani. They are two octaves apart, as mentioned above. One is a left hand strike, the other is a right hand strike. When recording in a program like Sonar, you always take care to never have the same octave sample play twice in a row.

    So, I hope that's encouragement for you to add a "sequencer" to your work flow. You'd be able to more closely achieve your goal of making virtual instruments sound "real."

    Randy

  4. #4

    Re: Quinn Mason: Symphony No. 4-Part 1

    All,

    I've noticed that the garritan timpani doesn't have pre-recorded rolls (which is easier) and when i want a roll like the ones i use in the symphony, it gives that repeated sample effects, which gives it away almost immedialy. I see that sonar is for windows, but i will see what cubase does, and if i don't like that, i'll see about some other DAWs.
    i work with this mostly in Sibelius 6 before converting it to .aiff and converting it to mp3 from there. Also, the reverb is Altiverb 6, Which i use extensively, and the setting for this symphony was Disney hall in Los angeles.

    This is part one to the September 2011 symphony, and parts 2-4 will be uploaded. Part 3 is kind of a drag (although the most passionate theme is in this part, it's 18 minutes of slow music) so i will try to abridge it.

  5. #5

    Re: Quinn Mason: Symphony No. 4-Part 1

    Quote Originally Posted by Symphonynumbertwo View Post
    All,

    I've noticed that the garritan timpani doesn't have pre-recorded rolls (which is easier) and when i want a roll like the ones i use in the symphony, it gives that repeated sample effects, which gives it away almost immedialy. I see that sonar is for windows, but i will see what cubase does, and if i don't like that, i'll see about some other DAWs...
    Instant Orchestra has sampled tympani rolls. But if you have Cubase, or are interested in adding one to your set-up, custom recording rolls on a per-project basis really is best. You can get exactly what you want.

    Hope you try it all out, as I described and demoed on my other reply. Playing those rolls is as close as you can get to having a live Tympanist in your studio, since the method is totally analagous - mallets hitting the drum, or fingers hitting the keys. Works great in DAW software, as do a lot of other things that are difficult when just triggering notes in notation.

    Best of luck with it all.

    Randy

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