SPITFIRE - Spitfire Solo Strings NEW Virtuoso Violin Total Performance Patch

Discussion in 'COMMERCIAL Announcements' started by Spitfire Team, Jun 6, 2018.

  1. rlw

    rlw Rod Wilson

    Aug 31, 2016
    Atlanta, GA
    I guess this will be on my Christmas List this year. Fantastic Demo and Fantastic Legato Features. Well done Spitfire.
    Wolf68 likes this.
  2. B.Karloff

    B.Karloff New Member

    Jul 18, 2018
    Apart from the great improvements with the Total Performance Patch:

    Has anyone noticed that moving the mic position "close to far" slider does not work at all?

    Coinciding the mic mix sliders (as one can see in the advanced view) will not change when moving the "close to far" slider on the "simple" view.
    Can anyone confirm this issue or is it just me?
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2018
  3. lp59burst

    lp59burst I'm just a "hobbyist"...

    Sep 11, 2016
    SF Bay Area, USA
    On my "Wish List"... waiting for 11/23... (or, 23/11 if you prefer... ;) )
    jamwerks likes this.
  4. B.Karloff

    B.Karloff New Member

    Jul 18, 2018
    Hi Ben,
    in regards to stuck mic positions (close>>far slider not working) the new Virtuoso Violin Performance seems to have the same issue like the Progressive longs had before.
    Can you please verify and confirm?
    Thank you!
  5. SpitfireSupport

    SpitfireSupport Customer Experience

    May 8, 2017
    There seems to be an issue with the "easy mixer" on this patch which we will look into. It's different to the issue you reported last time in that the "expert mixer" works correctly. For the time being, please use the expert mixer, we'll try to get the easy mixer fixed ASAP.
    jamwerks likes this.
  6. B.Karloff

    B.Karloff New Member

    Jul 18, 2018
    Hi Ben,
    thanks for your verifying reply and suggestion for a workaround using the "expert mixer". In the meantime I had spotted, too, that the expert mixer works just fine, it simply does not sync to the "easy mixer's" setting(or vice versa).
    Thanks again!
  7. Andy B

    Andy B Spitfire Audio

    Oct 26, 2004
    Thanks for the comments on the patch and demo. :)

    Hope those of you who are using the patch are enjoying it. For anyone wondering how I realised the violin part of the demo, I thought I'd post a link to a screen-flow we put together which details everything you need to know to control the patch – CC21 Vibrato Slider, CC1 Dynamics Slider & Velocity. Everything in the piece is dictated by these three controllers. All else happens as if by magic, thanks to some incredible scripting by the UK's Blake Robinson.



  8. Yannis Mouhoun

    Yannis Mouhoun New Member

    Jul 19, 2018
    Incredible work (and by the way, Spitfire just proved everyone they do are listening to feedbacks, and do want to improve their existing librairies). Can we expect a similar patch with the cello ?
  9. procreative

    procreative Senior Member

    Mar 12, 2013
    United Kingdom
    Once again Andy wows everyone with his mastery of composition and midi! You sir are a truly superb performer (not sure how to categorise your work as you seem to capture all bases, composition, dynamics, orchestration, midi programming.

    Kudos to Spitfire for fighting back and pushing the envelope, I hope they can extend this to the other instruments in the package.

    Owning Sable, this is the kind of Legato options I wished this had had from the start...
    dogdad likes this.
  10. fahl5

    fahl5 New Member

    Good News fropm Spitfire: The Demo for the new Virtuos-Patch after all sounds pretty satisfying :2thumbs:, so there is a good chance ths Spitfire Solostrings will be soon in use here in larger projects..
  11. noises on

    noises on Active Member

    Sep 28, 2013
  12. SpitfireSupport

    SpitfireSupport Customer Experience

    May 8, 2017
    Hi, hot off the press, here's a patch that should fix the issue for you. Please don't delete the old patch in case you need it for any reason.

    Attached Files:

  13. madfloyd

    madfloyd Active Member

    Jun 27, 2017
  14. ism

    ism Senior Member

    Dec 14, 2016
    Thanks Luke. So just to clarify a little bit more.

    This is very cool - and rewatching Andy's latest demo that I think I can see at least one point where must be using them.

    Of course the real urgent question is: does this mean that it's now possible to mock up he solo violin in Part's Fratres?

    More specifically - ie there any way we could get more insight into exactly what arpeggios have been recorded, their tempos and how they're triggered?

    So the duck tape fix is to set a custom velocity curve right in the Kontakt instrument and set all velocities 19 and below to zero. Which will affect both spicatto trigger, as well as the lowest progressive vibrato (which also triggers at 0-9). Going any higher than 19 would start to affect the legato trigger also. But so far as I can see from the manual, setting all velocities below 19 as 0 isn't going to have any further effects. That said, can't go much further than this without risking affecting the legato triggers.

    I do see a larger issue though, for which a way to simply disable the spiactto triggers would be an easy win.

    It's partly an issue of performance style: the sense I have from nearly all the legato demos is that they tend to use predominantly the high dynamics. Low dynamics are there occasionally, but almost (and this is subjective of course) as a type of contrast or punctuation to the primary predominantly high dynamic and fiercely high-classical aesthetic of the violin. This is of course very cool, and the spicatto trigger really add something to this style of playing.

    That said, what I really love about SsS is the expressive dimensions you get when you reverse this - where playing is predominantly softer, and the high dynamics are used for emphasis and (especially) phrasing - again, all very subjective, but they really feel like different instruments when you play them like this (I'll post a couple of noodlings below).

    In this style of playing, the staccato doesn't really add much, especially in the lower dynamics, and just adds a piece of unnecessary cognitive overhead to a performance. Of course you can adjust he velocities in the midi afterwards etc, but the damage to the playability is already done.

    Easy fix: button to disable spicatto triggers.

    Slightly more complicated fix: a way to disable spicatto triggers below a certain dynamic. (As it might still be nice to have the on the highest dynamic layer).

    Last edited: Oct 12, 2018
  15. ism

    ism Senior Member

    Dec 14, 2016
    I wanted, partially as a corrective, to share a couple of new noodlings. You might remember that I shared a couple earlier - and in my defence, they sounded pretty good to me at the time. Though in retrospect ... ouch. (The sin quo non of this library is that you absolutely *have* to use the vibrato)

    In fact, I've come to understand the fundamental subtlety of this library lies in the very particular way it allows you to craft the phrasing via the dynamics and vibrato.

    So here's some noodling - starts with the (old) first chair Vl, then Vc, Va:

    If you listen carefully, you can really hear how all the dynamic layers are used constantly to get the expressiveness that this style is going for. Even - or perhaps especially - within single notes. In the end, I really feel this gives you an expressive dimension that even other best in class library like the Joshua Bell and the Bohemian simply lack.

    Similarly with the vibrato. But it's not just that the vibrato is a nice expressive dimension (though it is). It's that while on their own the vibrato and non vibrato samples are a bit harsh (and maybe even a bit static), when you perform them together in the right proportion (see notes below) the sum is more than he whole of the parts. I'll admit that at first I was puzzled by the absense of a nice and pleasant out of the box progressive vibrato (a la CSSS). But with a bit of work with the vibrato (and some scripting - see the notes below), I find that there's an expressiveness here that I find I *much* prefer.

    Almost every single note in these noodlings is crafted with the vibrato, and a great many of use 2 or 3 dynamic layers in their shaping. All, I think, to great effect.

    And its an effect that for all the brilliance of the Joshua Bell and Bohemian instruments (for which I have nothing but effusive praise) you could never reach with them.

    (And of course, the time machine vibrato scripting takes this even further, although it's not used here)

    And while is something that will be perfectly obvious to string players, I've also managed to put my finger on another point of angst that has long afflicted me in my struggles with solo strings. It involves how important these expressive dimensions are in ensembles.

    To demonstrate this - well of couse I aspire to someday to be able to share with a series of brilliant compositions that fully exploit these expressive dimensions ... but for the moment here's another completely raw, noodling. This time it's 4-parts (including the new virtuoso Vl) and the proof of concept I'm going for here is to just to demonstrate how important these particular expressive dimension are within an ensemble:

    (again - all improvised, mod wheel only, raw performance, no midi programming)

    Admittedly this a bit cacophonous, but I think the proof of principle here is that you can really hear how important these expressive dimensions are the the effect of the quartet as a whole.

    Come to think of it, here's maybe a simpler example, borrowed from another thread. In the couple of bars following ~0:55, when the full ensemble enters:

    I think you can really hear how the phrasing of each line is performed with respect to the others.

    As someone said on that thread "I can almost hear the players watching each other's wrists". Which I think captures something about why having the ability to craft the vibrato and dynamics even on a single note is so important.

    Going from this library back to the Bohemian instruments (although again I have nothing but effusive praise for them) all the dynamics and vibrato are pre-recorded. So while they give you these magnificent solo performance, when you hear them in a duet, the composer can't coordinate the phrasing in this way at all. The players can never be seen watching each other's wrists.

    Which is where the details in the performance become so important - like the shifing of the vibato, which adds a kind of rhythmic dimension to each line, or the dyanmic swells across layers (and I'll emphasise that its the tibre change that makes this work, so its all about the dynamic crossfade ).

    And this helps me put my finger on and angst that I felt but couldn't quite express in listening to - especially acute in trying to do thinkgs like get the JB violin and Bohemian cello to play together. They can actually sound great together. But they sound like two prima donnas who don't seem to be paying much attenion to one another, much less watching eachother's wrists.

    So again, it's not just that that recording these instruments in the same space helps them blend (although of course there's that too). It's that here, finally, are the expressive dimension to get them to play in this style as an ensemble, watching eachother's wrists.

    I also think that the official legato demos massively undersell this expressive capacity in that they focus on a very different, and to my ear much more high-classical style in which the higher dynamics dominate. Andy's recent demo, for instance does use the dynamic crossfades in, for instance long crescendos. But he uses this capacity sparingly. Its equally brilliant. But not at all why I bought this library.

    The lameness of the actual compositional content of my noodlings aside, I'm starting this feel a real turning point in the long history of my Solo String Angst. And now that I think of it, maybe its a good time to thank Luke and Sandy at Spitfire support for the years - gosh, it really has been years - of patiently fielding my (not always very, er, focused) questions on across a variety of dimnsions of my Solo String Angst.

    **** notes on scripting vibrato and dynamics:

    All of these noodling are played using only the mod wheel, and no cc21 (with the ocassional touch of the sustain pedal).

    Vibrato is controlled by a "performance vibrato" script, which I'll share shortly, which does the following:

    a) vibrato (cc21) is inferred, in the first instance, entirely from dynamics (mod wheel). Between the 3 above noodling across the different instruments, there's maybe about 600 individual switchings between vib and non vib. And in all but a handful of cases (which could be handled via the sustain pedal or a bit of midi editing) I think both that i) these switchings are very important to the expressiveness of the phrase, and ii) the script gets it right. I'd also argue this represents quite a lot of cognitive overhead freed up to focus on thinkgs like composition and performance rather than cc21.

    b) This script also implements a kind of "midi compression" on the upper dynamic layers to reign in the dyamics a bit.

    I find that the levels of the default dyanamics are bit extreme for my taste. They might be great for the high-classical style of Andy's demos, but I find that I prefer them to be a little less extreme.

    Another way to put this is that by the time I crank up the volume so that you can really hear how great the lowest dyamaic layer sounds in a passage that isn't ostentatiously soft, the top dynamic layer have become so bombastically loud and you don't really get any benefit from it existing in the first place.

    So the easy solution is just for the script to reduce the expression when you're in the higher range.

    The upshot of all this is that in the above noodling you can hear individual notes crafted with dynamics across all three layers, without blowing up you speakers.

    c) there also some balancing of the vibrato levels going on in the script, which helps in getting smoother transitions between non vib and vib.
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2018
  16. frontline

    frontline New Member

    Aug 31, 2016
    Well, having just viewed Paul's Total Performance Patch walkthrough and Andy Blaney's demo, a crossgrade to Solo Strings would not seem imprudent at this juncture (or over the next several months, since I'll be busy exploring eDNA Earth patches).
  17. Lode_Runner

    Lode_Runner Senior Member

    Feb 5, 2014
    WOW. I'm sooo glad I checked in, and discovered this update. Spitfire, it sounds amazing. Wonderful job, thank you so much.

    I second the wish for a similar total performance patch for cello.
    dogdad likes this.
  18. Sami

    Sami The Undisclosing

    Jul 23, 2017
    I also think a cello patch would be fantastic, but speaking of cello, the current update completely broke the cello patch for me and it now loads in edit mode but without the possibility of editing (i.e. the wrench doesn’t expand the panel) and whenever I press a note, I hear a terrible racket of all the articulations played simultaneously. Any ideas?
  19. Oh man I really thought that this meant we have multi-lane MIDI editing now, but I am guessing this is just some awesome video editing there ;)

    Or is it.... :grin:
  20. Vik

    Vik Scandi Member

    Dec 15, 2013
    We've had that for a long time, but not in the most used editors: Score and Piano Roll. We've had it in Arrange and the step editor 'forever'. :)
    vewilya likes this.

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