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Posted on Thu, Mar 18 2010 01:26
by jeremyroberts
Joined on Thu, Apr 17 2003, New York, NY USA, Posts 282

New to VE Pro (today). Using it as a slave (server mode) on its own machine, with a ProTools master.

Confused as to terminology and workflow.

INSTANCE vs. PROJECT vs. Metaframe

Let's say I am doing a song called VANITYPROJECTONE. I want to load a bunch of VIs into VEPro. Fine. My instance is called "VanityProjectOne". I guess I should also save the PROJECT, yes? But why do I want to save the metaframe?

I am confused as to which part of the puzzle is my song file.

What am I missing? When would I want to have multiple instances within a project? When would I want to have multiple projects within a metaframe? I'm not getting this. Yet. Guidance, please? Thanks.

Posted on Thu, Mar 18 2010 03:12
by charlesparente
Joined on Fri, Aug 07 2009, Posts 15
Ah, yes. The nomenclature is quite confusing at times.
Here's my understanding, but I'm also 1 or 2 beta versions behind: [anyone else please correct any of my mistakes!]



A 'Metaframe' is a group of VE Pro instances saved together.

The file ending is .mframe.


An ‘instance’ is a VE Pro window containing a bunch of loaded VIs or VSL instruments, each with their own midi channel settings/mixer settings/colors, etc.
Name the instance by double clicking the instance name next to the red preserve icon.


A 'vi frame' is a single instance of VE Pro saved as a Project from the File-->Save Project menu.
Like setting up a mixer full of 20 instruments, each with their own loaded matrices/midi channel/mixer settings.

The file ending is .viframe.

One .viframe file contains 1 instance which can contain 1 Project.



An ‘instance’ can either be saved within a metaframe or saved as a Project from the file-Save Project menu.


When you open or create an instance of VE Pro, it appears inside the list of instances in VE Pro Server.
When you name an instance, that name appears in the server window, and at the top of the VEPro gui.



Once you have multiple instances setup the way you want it, you can save a Metaframe to be able to recall that whole setup with one click.


Or you can save the contents of each instance as a PROJECT for fast recall later--for example saving a single instance filled with string patches as a 'Strings' project, to quickly load a 'subtemplate' of strings

when you're using VE Pro and decide it's time to add a bunch of strings without trashing all of the other Instances currently being used.

Since I'm still surfing the learning curve, I like to create both metaframes AND projects with descriptive names for easy recall later, and to save inside my global project folder as 'backups' in case something goes wrong later.




What happens when you hit 'save' inside your DAW is another matter entirely.
Depends if you're instances are 'decoupled' or not.



Activating Decouple does not include the loaded plug-in data of the given Vienna Ensemble PRO instance when you save the project in your DAW.
It makes for fast file saving times.


In my experience, if decouple is turned off, then VEPro reloads all of your samples every time the project is opened [if not using preserved instances].
Decouple is not a global option....it's an option for each VE Pro plugin instance.



When using Decouple, don´t forget to save your VE Pro instances as Projects [or save a metaframe] before closing your DAW file, or else there is no way to recall the instruments loaded in VE Pro.


If using Decouple, and you forget to SAVE the VE Pro Metaframe or projects before closing the DP file,
then in my experience the DAW opens an empty 'default' VE Pro instance
the next time that DAW file is opened.



If none of this makes sense, start slowly, open one instance at a time, add some instruments, name things, save things and
take screenshots along the way. Start with VEPro standalone before even trying to use it with your DAW.
Then once you figure out the VEPro methodology, start using it with your DAW
and see what happens with 'preserve', 'decouple', 'load plugin data', etc. and take LOTS of notes.


There are still aspects I don't understand completely, but going slowly has helped.

Posted on Fri, Mar 19 2010 01:40
by jeremyroberts
Joined on Thu, Apr 17 2003, New York, NY USA, Posts 282

Charles,

Thank you for taking the time to past this. Unfortunately, after another solid day of working with VEPro (I bought it this morning) I am no further along.

I DO NOT want to discuss the standalone, or non-slave versions. That's not how most of us in protools land are going to use VEPro.

But it's not just saving files that I need assistance with, it's workflow.


For this discussion we are speaking about a Protools Master on one machine, and VE Pro on a 2nd machine as slave, connected via Cat5.

Scenario 1: Protools session on the master. In VE Pro (slave) a specific set of plugs and presets and routings for only this song. The VE Pro instance of the plugs are only useful to this song. The goal is when the song loads in protools, it will also load in VE Pro, and when closing the session in protools, it will close in VE Pro. I think this is best accomplished with a single metaframe with a single instance, yes?

Scenario 2: Protools session on the master. A single song. In VE Pro (slave) CAN WE load more than one instance?, for example: 1) strings & bass, and 2) a song-specific instance. ?? The goal is to keep the strings and bass loaded in the slave server when the protools session closes so that the samples don't have to reload for the next song. But in order to access two instances, it requires 2 connections at the host. Bad. CPU will not deal with this.

Scenario 3: The next song - we want to use the strings & bass from song#2 and a different instance of song-specific plugs. Can we do this on a single instance and merge project data?

Scenario 4: Load song #4 into protools, which is similar to song#1 -- everything is unique to this song and the VIs in VEPro are all unique to this song.

So how do we do this? How do we switch sessions/songs?

It's not obvious and it's not intuitive. And I've been doing computer based recording since 1985. If I can't figure it out, it's hidden deep down.... and of course, ther is NO DOCUMENTATION.

Paul?

Posted on Fri, Mar 19 2010 05:48
by Paul
Joined on Sat, Aug 03 2002, Vienna, Posts 13360

jeremyroberts wrote:
Scenario 4: Load song #4 into protools, which is similar to song#1 -- everything is unique to this song and the VIs in VEPro are all unique to this song.
Hi Jeremy,

there are many possible workflows, I´ll try to answer your specific questions the best I can. I am afraid that you´re mixing up the terms, which makes these questions even more confusing.

jeremyroberts wrote:
Scenario 1: Protools session on the master. In VE Pro (slave) a specific set of plugs and presets and routings for only this song. The VE Pro instance of the plugs are only useful to this song. The goal is when the song loads in protools, it will also load in VE Pro, and when closing the session in protools, it will close in VE Pro. I think this is best accomplished with a single metaframe with a single instance, yes?

If you "only" need one instance for a specific song, and you don´t even want to preserve that instance, you don´t need to save the metaframe or viframe. The Vienna Ensemble PRO viframe data will be saved with the song.

If you´d like to save this one instance of VE PRO, save it as a viframe file (ONE instance of VE PRO).

If you want to use "Decouple" (you do, afaik), you should definitely save the viframe file for safety, because your PT song will not save the plug-in data.

jeremyroberts wrote:

Yes, you can load as many VE PRO instances as you like (haven´t you tried?). To keep the samples loaded, use "Preserve". 

To open 2 instances, insert 2 Vienna Ensemble PRO instances in your PT song. CPU depends on your computer, modern computers can easily deal with 2 VE PRO instances, a G5 2.0Ghz will have troubles.

jeremyroberts wrote:
Scenario 3: The next song - we want to use the strings & bass from song#2 and a different instance of song-specific plugs. Can we do this on a single instance and merge project data?

Your instances are saved - the names of your preserved instances will show up when you open the Server Interface window in PT. You can connect to it. You can add more instruments in the same VE PRO instance, if you like. You can also open a 3rd VE PRO instance.

jeremyroberts wrote:
Scenario 4: Load song #4 into protools, which is similar to song#1 -- everything is unique to this song and the VIs in VEPro are all unique to this song.

"Similar" means "not the same" for VE PRO. You´ll need to load a different VE PRO or change the settings in your preserved VE PRO session.

jeremyroberts wrote:
It's not obvious and it's not intuitive. And I've been doing computer based recording since 1985. If I can't figure it out, it's hidden deep down.

It´s a new aproach, it depends on how you want to use this technology. Take one step after the other. Learn how the software works. I believe you expect something that VE PRO cannot do. You need to follow certain rules, depending on your workflow.

I have contacted you via mail, hope we can get you started quickly.

jeremyroberts wrote:
and of course, ther is NO DOCUMENTATION.

I am hearing you. Are you listening to what I am saying? I´m rewriting the manual, and I have told you several times. The documentation is there, but to paraphrase Wittgenstein: "Knowledge is like a ladder. Once you have climbed it, you don´t need it anymore."

Once you get the system, you´ll see that the documentation is actually there :-)

Nevertheless, I confess that we can extend the manual - and I´m on it. But I also know that we won´t be able to make everybody happy....

Best,

Paul

Paul Kopf
Product Manager - Vienna Symphonic Library
Posted on Fri, Mar 19 2010 15:57
by jeremyroberts
Joined on Thu, Apr 17 2003, New York, NY USA, Posts 282

Paul,

Thank you for trying to clarify this, but unfortunately the software does not do as you say it should...

Example: VEPro server 32-bit; 1 instance, a bunch of VIs. Save the project as "song1.viframe32". Save the metaframe as "song1.mframe32". Go to Protools, instantiate a single VEPro plug. Connect to instance, "song1". Route audio and midi. perfect. Amazing. Works great. Decouple is OFF; Preserve instance in VEPro is OFF;  -- at this point save everything. save the project in VEPro, Save the metaframe in VEPro. Save protools session file. Close protools session. VEPro closes instance automagically. So far so good.

NOW - let's open the session. ProTools tells VEPro to open the corresponding metaframe and instance (project) - but wait, the NAME of the instance is no longer "song1" -- it is EMPTY. Just "connected IP 192.168.x.x" - the instance name is also not named. The instance data appears to have been sent from protools, and VEPro server was simply loading it all new. But that's no good, since I very well may make edits to it (expect that I will). So now what? Do I re-save-as replacing the old file name of the viframe and the metaframe(s) ? 

I will discuss this with you in person.

just wanted to document the behaviors as I experience them.

Thanks,

Jeremy

Posted on Fri, Mar 19 2010 16:43
by mosso
Joined on Thu, Jun 23 2005, London, England, Posts 376

Hi Jeremy,

My advice is don't overcomplicate things.
Make sure Decouple is turned off. All the data for all instances of VE
Pro will now be saved with your Protools project. Job done! If you make
changes to instances of VE Pro for that project then again these changes will be saved when you save the project file.

If you need the instances to be named you need to use
Preserve but this brings a few other features with it. Maybe you should leave that alone until you need more than one instance to be loaded.

M

Martin Thornton
<a href="http://www.mosso.co.uk/" target="_blank">www.mosso.co.uk</a>
Posted on Sat, Mar 20 2010 01:16
by jeremyroberts
Joined on Thu, Apr 17 2003, New York, NY USA, Posts 282

Martin,

Thank you for your suggestions.

I spoke with Paul Steinbauer today at a demo presentation in New York, and we discussed various workflows.

One concept of workflow is to let the host save your settings and parameters. Don't worry about  saving separate "projects" or viframes, because we can let the host save the settings for us. That seems to be your suggestion.

But I can't do this. The "old guy" in me has been working with slave computers for so long, it's almost automatic:

Once the need for the content from the slave, make it. Route it. DO I like the sounds and am I ready to record a performance? If so, SAVE-AS right now (the slave/project/whatever you want to call it). At this point, there is a way to restore the slave if something should go terribly wrong. Such as the host craps out. Or the host changes their file format one day and parameters are no longer ported to the plug (happens all the time). Or the host no longer supports the plugin (happens). Or the user decides to migrate to a different host. (happens). But I can load my VE Pro project if I save the files.

There may be a bug related to this in some versions of VE Pro in some configurations - I'm not declaring it a bug just yet, but Paul was able to recreate it today on the demo computer(s). He's going to look into it.

I will not trust ProTools to preserve my VE Pro settings -- it's too important. So for now I will save viframes(projects)  but not metaframes.

Thanks for your suggestions.

Jeremy

Posted on Sat, Mar 20 2010 04:17
by Karel
Joined on Mon, Jan 19 2009, Belgium, Posts 2173
jeremyroberts wrote:

Paul,

Thank you for trying to clarify this, but unfortunately the software does not do as you say it should...

Example: VEPro server 32-bit; 1 instance, a bunch of VIs. Save the project as "song1.viframe32". Save the metaframe as "song1.mframe32". Go to Protools, instantiate a single VEPro plug. Connect to instance, "song1". Route audio and midi. perfect. Amazing. Works great. Decouple is OFF; Preserve instance in VEPro is OFF;  -- at this point save everything. save the project in VEPro, Save the metaframe in VEPro. Save protools session file. Close protools session. VEPro closes instance automagically. So far so good.

NOW - let's open the session. ProTools tells VEPro to open the corresponding metaframe and instance (project) - but wait, the NAME of the instance is no longer "song1" -- it is EMPTY. Just "connected IP 192.168.x.x" - the instance name is also not named. The instance data appears to have been sent from protools, and VEPro server was simply loading it all new. But that's no good, since I very well may make edits to it (expect that I will). So now what? Do I re-save-as replacing the old file name of the viframe and the metaframe(s) ? 

I will discuss this with you in person.

just wanted to document the behaviors as I experience them.

Thanks,

Jeremy



The behavior you describe is normal. You connect to a preserved instance, then unpreserve it (so the instance becomes unnamed again). If you then save the master host project, it will load again in that exact state.
Karel Bassez
Software Engineer
Vienna Symphonic Library
Posted on Sat, Mar 20 2010 12:09
by mosso
Joined on Thu, Jun 23 2005, London, England, Posts 376

Hi Jeremy,

I understand the need for a backup and when I originally started with slave computers I had to manually save my slave settings so I understand what you're talking about. Indeed now I still save metaframes whenever I make changes just so I have a backup not linked to the sequencer. In my last message I was going to also suggest saving the metaframe as backup but I didn't want to further confuse you - I was just trying to help you get the system working.

You should remember the data stored by the VE Pro sequencer plugin and the data stored by the metaframe/viframe are essentially identical and/or subsets of each other, and if VE Pro can't communicate with a plugin it is hosting (because of upgrades that make the relevant data incompatible) then having saved the metaframe or viframe will make no difference.

It sounds like chatting to Paul was very useful for you and I hope you get VE Pro integrated into your setup successfully.

M

Martin Thornton
<a href="http://www.mosso.co.uk/" target="_blank">www.mosso.co.uk</a>
Posted on Sat, Mar 20 2010 13:00
by Paul
Joined on Sat, Aug 03 2002, Vienna, Posts 13360

Hi,

we have checked out a few things - hope to get that ironed out and add some small useful features for VE PRO with the next update.

Best,

Paul

Paul Kopf
Product Manager - Vienna Symphonic Library
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