John Reimer wrote, "It seems to lack some of the features which I find
useful in Viena, and I
suspect that my soundfont work will draw on what both Viena and your
Polyphone can provide."
I think one feature that is lacking, which is really indispensable is the
keyboard. You really have to be able to check out the functioning of
a preset and make sure that all the compass is functioning and that all the
samples are properly looped and working as they should. This is
especially true of multi-layered presets at different pitches such as the
One aspect of Viena which causes me to have to revert to Creative Labs
Vienna is the inability to see the loop start and end points of each
instance of the same sample in the
instrument pool. If corrections have to be made to the loop points, it is
easier to do it in Creative Labs Vienna than in Viena, although for most
aspects of Soundfont
creation, Viena certainly speeds up the process.
Mixtures are more tedious than other presets and it will be interesting to
see how Polyphone facilitates the process of mixture creation.
Polyphone is clean and uncluttered and looks to be relatively easy to work
Now if only Creative Labs will continue to maintain a line of soundcards
that have soundfont capability! Apparently, gamers don't need the
soundfont-capable soundcards any longer and, since they
far outnumber the audiophiles having an interest in MIDI or soundbank
creation, there is probably little incentive for Creative to continue to
provide this flexibility. I hope they are aware
that there are groups like us who rely on these soundcards.
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Is it really important to work on the loops at the instrument level? Usually it is configured once for all at the sample level, so that in the instrument level we just have to link samples and take care of the instrument parameters. Using a sample at different pitches has always kept a clean loop in my case.
I used to following strategy:
- first we need an initial instrument (usually a principal) which is well harmonized and whose linked samples:
- have rootkeys relative to their real pitches (I mean a 4' rank sample played with the key 48 will have a rootkey 60)
- have rootkeys describing a high keyrange (let's say from 60 to 120)
- then we use the mixture creator in which we put the information about the ranks (screenshot):
- the number of divisions
- for each divisions the number of ranks and the keyrange
- for each rank of a division its type
- finally samples are created via the association of the ranks, and an instrument is made based on these created samples. Some parameters of the initial instrument are used such as the attenuation. A loop can be made automaticaly during the step of sample creation.
I find this tools particularly usefull to test several association of harmonics, especially with rare mutations.
Feel free to test it ;-)
About the virtual keyboard it's done but I now need a synthetizer association. I thought of linking Polyphone with Fluidsynth but the task may be trickier than expected...
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