VSL templates, overlapping CC messages

Discussion in 'SAMPLE Talk' started by ptram, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. ptram

    ptram Senior Member

    470
    375
    Nov 30, 2013
    Hi,

    I'm re-making all my templates for the VSL libraries, to be used on Logic and Dorico. One of the main issues I have with VSL's presets is their insistence on using CC#1 for selecting articulations, and CC#2 for controlling dynamics.

    The modulation wheel is the main control you can find on nearly all master keyboards. Many sound library manufacturers have decided that this should be devoted to controlling the sound's dynamics, and I find this makes good sense.

    VSL has instead decided that the big wheel has to be used to select sound variations, with dynamics assigned to CC#2 (a not-so-common breath controller – but thank you TEC for existing!).

    As a consequence, all VSL presets are expecing CC#1 for sound variation, CC#2 for dynamics. While composing, I rely on the modulation wheel for controlling dynamics.

    In Logic, I'm remaking all the VSL presets, since I plan to only use a sub-set of all the available articulations. Here, CC#1 controls dynamics, and articulations are selected by way of Keyswitches and Keyswitch Velocities, with additional matrices (containing the less common articulations) being selected via Program Change.

    With Dorico, I would like to use the presets made by VSL to work together with the Expression Maps, and let Dorico select all the articulations that are needed by the score. This means leaving CC#1 free for use by the software itself, and controlling dynamic nuances with CC#2.

    Exchanging data between Logic and Dorico would therefore mean having to mass-replace the CC#1 and CC#2 data at each exchange (using Logic's Transform function). Is this the smarter solution? Or would re-program the huge amount of presets be a better idea?

    Paolo
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  2. DaddyO

    DaddyO Senior Member

    Am I missing something? VSL allows you to assign whatever CC you want for whatever control you want. Sure, they have defaults, but it is easy to change them. Sorry if I'm not understanding you correctly.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    ptram

    ptram Senior Member

    470
    375
    Nov 30, 2013
    Editing VSL presets is incredibly easy. Making it for all the libraries is an incredibly long work. I actually did (am doing) it with Logic, where I created my own, quite simplified presets. But would prefer to avoid doing it with Dorico, where I'll have to edit several matrices in hundred presets. I would prefer making music than programming! :)

    As you probably know, each of the VSL presets created for being used with the Expression Maps (in Cubase or Dorico) are made of several matrices (listed in the left side of the window). The controls for selecting cells/articulations have to be edited for each matrix, for each preset/instrument. Quite a huge work.

    vsl-preset.png

    Paolo
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  4. OP
    OP
    ptram

    ptram Senior Member

    470
    375
    Nov 30, 2013
    As an alternative: I could only control dynamics, in Logic, with a slider set to CC#2, ignoring the modulation wheel. But my master keyboard has a big, precise, robust wheel, while programmable sliders are more on the light side.

    I could also re-program it to send CC#2 messages, but this would then make it unusable for other libraries, relying on the more standard CC#1 message.

    Using TouchOSC, or a small external USB/wireless physical controller, is another solution. But it involves having to deal with an additional devices, and I would love to keep everything as straight as possible.

    Paolo
     
  5. Ben

    Ben Senior Member

    49
    21
    Dec 22, 2017
    VSL libraries are best to use with a breath controller, therefore CC2 (Breath) controlls dynamics.
    I do not use the VSL Instruments preset but instead made myself a huge template.
    I would suggest to use the default expression maps and presets in Dorico and when transfering to Logic remap everything to your template. In Cubase that could be done automaticly by using the logic editor.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
    ptram and devonmyles like this.
  6. OP
    OP
    ptram

    ptram Senior Member

    470
    375
    Nov 30, 2013
    Ben, that's probably the best way to do it. In Logic, it is easy to use the Transform dialog to move all CC#2 messages from Dorico to CC#1 in Logic, and vice-versa.

    Paolo
     
  7. Tfis

    Tfis Senior Member

    207
    126
    Jan 13, 2016
    It takes a couple of hours, but it pays off.

    It's mostly drag and drop.
     
  8. OP
    OP
    ptram

    ptram Senior Member

    470
    375
    Nov 30, 2013
    At the moment, I'm counting about 700 VSL instruments to be added to VEPRO. Multiplied for twelve matrices in each preset/instrument, it is about 8400 matrices to be edited.

    Are you sure it will take so little? Am I planning to do it the wrong way?

    Paolo
     
  9. richhickey

    richhickey Senior Member

    50
    83
    Nov 3, 2017
    You can use the Scripter plugin of Logic to turn CC1s into CC2s and vice versa, dynamically. I wish VE Pro supported MIDI plugins for similar purposes.
     
  10. Ben

    Ben Senior Member

    49
    21
    Dec 22, 2017
    I did not count how many instruments I have. I just started with the solo violin because it has the most articulations. Then I duplicated this instrument and replaced the articulations with them of an other instrument. I did this for the most commonly used instruments and add the less common to my template when I need them. The initial template took me 3 days to create (with cubase routing setup). For second violin I used the logical editor to transpose and tune the instrument.
     
  11. Tfis

    Tfis Senior Member

    207
    126
    Jan 13, 2016
    You mean 700 single articul
    I'm counting barely 150 instruments in the "super package" wondering what are the other 550...?
     
  12. OP
    OP
    ptram

    ptram Senior Member

    470
    375
    Nov 30, 2013
    I do really mean instruments. What I'm trying to do, with my template, is to create instruments that can be immediately recalled on need. For example, the VSL Solo Violin is only the basic color that can be used to create a more complex palette of Solo or Ensemble Violins.

    Take for example my strings:

    strings-table.png

    As you can see, the individual titles included in the VSL catalogue have been used to build the various strings combination usually required by a modern classical score. Orchestral Violins have been used as the basis for both Violins I and II. Chamber Strings are used as divisi for the Orchestral and Appassionata Strings. Dimensions Strings Violins have been used as I Solos and II Solos, 1º leggio, a4, and so on.

    Then, while the Expression Maps include sordino articulations as variations to each basic articulations, I prefer to include a dedicated set of instruments for the complete set of sordino articulations (VSL consider sordino instruments as separate instruments, due to the completeness of their set).

    This template may seems incredibly space and time consuming, but it is conceived to save time later, when in need of that particular combination while composing. I will not have to make my 1º leggio later, while thinking to a counterpoint.

    Is this system flawed?

    Paolo
     
  13. Ben

    Ben Senior Member

    49
    21
    Dec 22, 2017
    I would not say flawed if it works for you, but overengineered.
    Try simpifing your workflow as much as possible. For example I would just set up violine and sordinos, and if I need them combined I use the same MIDI data on both and change the balance in the mixer.
    That gives me the flexibility to do whatever I want but keeps everything as simple as possible.
    I also use my template only to have a starting point and consistend workflow. But I do not recycle the same instance in other projects.
     

Share This Page