Is CC#11 (expression) just volume?

Discussion in 'Newbie Questions' started by thevisi0nary, Jun 20, 2018.

  1. thevisi0nary

    thevisi0nary Senior Member

    136
    41
    Jan 17, 2018
    I feel like I should have asked this awhile ago, but I normally just use CC#1 to control dynamics and fader automation if I need to control volume. Is there any difference between CC#11 / expression vs Daw fader volume? If it is different is there an advantage to using CC#11?
     
  2. Piano Pete

    Piano Pete Senior Member

    394
    195
    Jan 5, 2017
    It depends on the library and the patch--please consult your respective user manuals, but I typically use cc7 as a rough balance, and then cc11 to fine tune everything.
     
  3. gsilbers

    gsilbers Part of Pulsesetter-Sounds.com

    as pete said, it depends on the library. some libraries will have a different set of samples which will sound or cross fade once you move cc11.
    think a cello sustain note and you press it hard but have both cc1 and cc11 controllers down to zero or close to zero. that note you play will trigger a sample of a cello player playing that sustain note softly. some libraries will have the cc1 to turn up the volume of that note played softly. Then if you move cc11 it will fade up a different sample of that same note played by the cello player much harder and slowly they cross fade so you get the impression that the cellist started to played stronger. if you later turn cc1 down then you will listen to that note played hard (harsher tone) but at lower volume.
     
  4. Tod

    Tod Senior Member

    I think in the general sense of CC11, yes, it is a rather glorified name for volume. I think it gets it's name "Expression" because it's normally used along with volume (CC7) to add more control.

    CC11 can be used for dynamics, as mentioned above, but normally CC1 is used for that. However, CC11, CC1, or any CC controller can be used in any way your want, until they are applied to a task or control, they are just am unused CC.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    thevisi0nary

    thevisi0nary Senior Member

    136
    41
    Jan 17, 2018
    Couldn't the same thing be achomplished using fader automation in the daw instead of CC#11? I'm talking in the cases where the sample library is using CC#1 for dynamics.
     
  6. Piano Pete

    Piano Pete Senior Member

    394
    195
    Jan 5, 2017
    Technically yes; however, there are usually crossfaded samples being triggered from cc11. As I am sure you know, a violin timbrally is different at piano than forte. With a decent library, this would be available to your pallete via cc11-- or wherever the developer decided to throw it. Otherwise, you could have a violin sounding like it is playing fortissimo when its amplitude is that of pianissimo.

    If everything is baked into cc1, and there is nothing on 11, you could use the channel strip to carve out your dynamic movement. If that makes sense to you and your libraries are setup this way, go for it. Just keep track of what cc lanes do what depending on the library and patch, and you should be fine.
     
  7. d.healey

    d.healey Music Monkey

    2,386
    1,113
    Nov 2, 2011
    England
    Nope, depends on the library but the most common setup is to have dynamic layer crossfades controlled via CC1 (and usually there is also a volume curve in there too).

    CC11 is usually assigned as a volume control, yes you can achieve the same thing with a fader, but CC11 exists so that you can control volume from an external controller such as an expression pedal (most of which default to CC11). Sometimes CC7 is also used as a master volume but it depends on the VI.
     
    benmrx likes this.
  8. Piano Pete

    Piano Pete Senior Member

    394
    195
    Jan 5, 2017
    That's why I said earlier that it depends on the library. For example, Hollywood Orchestra Diamond Strings has vibrato on cc1 and volume on cc11.
     
  9. OP
    OP
    thevisi0nary

    thevisi0nary Senior Member

    136
    41
    Jan 17, 2018
    Got it, so unless otherwise specified, "Expression" is simply just volume.

    It just occurred to me how odd it is that this is even a thing. Why would a sample developer even call this expression in the cases where it just controls volume?
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2018
    d.healey likes this.
  10. NoamL

    NoamL Senior Member

    2,130
    3,822
    Jul 6, 2015
    We're confusing things unnecessarily here. CC1 is the dynamics control (piano - mf - forte) on nearly all modern libraries. The Hollywood Series is an exception where they put it on CC11 instead but no other developers have followed their lead as far as I know.

    CC11 is a volume controller that is made of MIDI information. The advantage of using CC11 instead of track automation is that CC11 is inherently part of your MIDI regions. That means if you need to move or copy your regions, the CC11 data will go with it. CC data is also channelized.
     
  11. OP
    OP
    thevisi0nary

    thevisi0nary Senior Member

    136
    41
    Jan 17, 2018
    I have my daw set up to toggle automation envelopes to follow midi items, so I could just use that. I appreciate the distinction though.
     
  12. dog1978

    dog1978 Senior Member

    319
    132
    Jan 27, 2011
  13. Rob

    Rob Senior Member

    3,182
    835
    Aug 23, 2007
    In my experience no, cc11 is not just volume. That’s cc7. Cc11 is there to provide more natural dynamics, by associating it to filters, or xfaded samples or any technique the developer chooses... Samplemodeling and Audiomodeling use it this way, for example, and cc1 for vibrato. This is also my preferred configuration in all the patches I program
     
  14. OP
    OP
    thevisi0nary

    thevisi0nary Senior Member

    136
    41
    Jan 17, 2018
    Thank you very much. What midi keyboard are you using?
     
  15. Rob

    Rob Senior Member

    3,182
    835
    Aug 23, 2007
    I use a yamaha digital piano, no wheels... and an akai usb ewi for cc11/1
     
  16. OP
    OP
    thevisi0nary

    thevisi0nary Senior Member

    136
    41
    Jan 17, 2018
    I am sorry I think I double quoted lol, I meant the one in the video.

    In reference to what you were saying before I am a little confused. Isn’t what you are referring to just dynamics? If the library I am using maps that to cc1 wouldn’t cc11 just be controlling volume?
     
  17. zolhof

    zolhof Senior Member

    344
    427
    Jun 27, 2014
    Silent Hill
    That’s the Korg Triton taktile.
     
  18. OP
    OP
    thevisi0nary

    thevisi0nary Senior Member

    136
    41
    Jan 17, 2018
    Damn they don't make a 61 key version =(.
     
  19. Tod

    Tod Senior Member

    I think the midi standard for CC11 is volume. Back in the 90s before VSTis, there were various keyboards and all the ones I had used, the default for CC11 was volume.

    Now days that don't mean too much, although many VSTi instruments still use CC11 as a modulator for volume.

    But as Rob points out, it can be used in any way a developer chooses. Most of the CCs can be used in any way a developer chooses.
     
  20. OP
    OP
    thevisi0nary

    thevisi0nary Senior Member

    136
    41
    Jan 17, 2018
    I know that CC mapping can vary between different libraries, I mean't in the situations where dynamics are mapped to CC1.
     

Share This Page