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Synful + VSL = the future?
Last post Fri, Oct 21 2005 by hermitage59, 35 replies.
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Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 11:13
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
I've been experimenting with my own modwheel blend patches for section strings, using up to six layers and custom crossfade curves, that combine various sustains from Opus 1 and Chamber Strings. The resulting cres/dim realism and evolving textures on long notes is extremely convincing, and wonderful to play in real time. Quick, efficient and realistic. But if I use the Perf Tool, I'm back to single layer (or at the most, two). The PT is an amazing innovation, and full credit to Herb and the team, but it is inherently limited by the staggering number of transition samples that would be needed by multi-layer crossfade patches. Also, you are stuck with one portamento/transition speed. This is where I feel that Synful has the edge. Granted, the current crop of demos do not come even close to VSL (and may never) - something about the sustains just don't "gel" - but the note transitions, with their varying degrees of portamento and attack characteristics are quite staggeringly realistic, especially on the solo violin. And it's all done in realtime (albeit with a 1 second latency to allow for processing).

Which begs the question: can the two technologies be combined?

Synful for the attack/transition characteristics, and VSL for the "body" of the sound?

You will not find a more loyal VSL devotee, and these thoughts are in no way a criticism of their outstanding work, but I am beginning to baulk at the sheer number of articulations that I need even for Pop string arrangements, and the increasing amount of time that it is taking to manually piece them together, not to mention the hardware that's required (I already have 3 networked PCs with max'd out RAM). I want Synful's intelligent articulation selection & playability, but with VSL's sound quality.

Am I hoping for the impossible?


Mike.
Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 12:38
by Dietz
Joined on Tue, Aug 06 2002, Vienna / Europe, Posts 7883
Mike McCarthy wrote:
[...] I want Synful's intelligent articulation selection & playability, but with VSL's sound quality.

Am I hoping for the impossible?


Mike,

thanks for your interest. As you may imagine, we are fully aware of the possibilities and options you describe (... since quite some time before Synful appeared on the scene, BTW Wink ...). Rest assured that we are be no means done with our own ideas and developments - quite on the contrary. All we ask you for is a little patience.

All the best,
/Dietz - Vienna Symphonic Library
Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 13:51
by Rob Elliott
Joined on Sun, Feb 02 2003, Salt Lake City, UT, Posts 1657
Dietz wrote:
Mike McCarthy wrote:
[...] I want Synful's intelligent articulation selection & playability, but with VSL's sound quality.

Am I hoping for the impossible?


Mike,

thanks for your interest. As you may imagine, we are fully aware of the possibilities and options you describe (... since quite some time before Sysnful appeared on the scene, BTW Wink ...). Rest assured that we are be no means done with our own ideas and developments - quite on the contrary. All we ask you for is a little patience.

All the best,


Thanks Dietz - this is WHAT I wanted to hear. Mike's comments are spot on!!!!

(BTW, just ordered Chamber Strgs and Epic Horns - outstanding!! If these had the 'real time' art options of something like synful and the 'body' of what is already there - you would not have a competitor IMHO.)

Rob
what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?
Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 14:40
by Christian Marcussen
Joined on Mon, Nov 10 2003, Posts 1508
Sounds great Dietz

Quote:
(BTW, just ordered Chamber Strgs and Epic Horns - outstanding!! If these had the 'real time' art options of something like synful and the 'body' of what is already there - you would not have a competitor IMHO.)

Rob


To quote Herb - "what competition"? Big Smile Cool
Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 15:10
by Rob Elliott
Joined on Sun, Feb 02 2003, Salt Lake City, UT, Posts 1657
Christian,

While I think VSL is superior for so many orchestral applications, the great thing for us consumers is that if any company 'rests on its laurels' for too long, it is a free market that will displace that company - as others will innovate and replace current technologies.

I am confident that VSL will not do this and continue to offer innovative products for years to come Big Smile

Rob
what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?
Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 15:30
by hermitage59
Joined on Fri, Mar 25 2005, The Slavic Cultural Empire, Posts 1050
So the future custom built 'Rolls Royce' of samples will have gold mirrors and austrian leather seats with a fully automatic gearbox!
Of course Dietz, human nature being what it is, there will be enquiries about time, how long, measured not in months but down to the last second.
Seems like a good situation for VSL to be in, yes?

Good luck and every success to all the team, i find your collective attitude refreshing and definitely commited to great service, something the competitors singularly fail to emulate.

Now all i need is a large garage for that rolls!

Regards,

Alex.

p.s. What's a ford?
[i:d09f9c4039][color=blue:d09f9c4039][size=11:d09f9c4039]Orchestration is the art of making your own choice.....
Genius is the art of making the right choice....[/size:d09f9c4039][/color:d09f9c4039][/i:d09f9c4039]
Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 16:27
by William
Joined on Sun, Nov 24 2002, USA, Posts 5704
I think the automation aspect of synful is an extremely good idea, but the sound of the basic timbres is artificial and electronic sounding. It honestly reminded me of the Yamaha dx7 I used to have.

There is also maybe the most basic recording engineer's philosophy that is egregiously violated by synful - not to tamper with the basic waveforms of the original recording. To present them in the most pure fashion possible is the goal, which is what VSL has done, but synful literally rips them to pieces then "reassembles" them.
Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 19:42
by SyQuEsT
Joined on Mon, Jan 13 2003, Quebec, Posts 617
Dietz wrote:
All we ask you for is a little patience.


No problem but I would like when we can expect to have some news ? Big Smile
Mathieu Laprise
Sonomax inc.
Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 22:29
by Dietz
Joined on Tue, Aug 06 2002, Vienna / Europe, Posts 7883
This is all up to Herb and our developers - and finally our marketing team. I won't spill the beans, that's for sure Wink
/Dietz - Vienna Symphonic Library
Posted on Mon, Sep 19 2005 23:14
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
William wrote:
There is also maybe the most basic recording engineer's philosophy that is egregiously violated by synful - not to tamper with the basic waveforms of the original recording. To present them in the most pure fashion possible is the goal, which is what VSL has done, but synful literally rips them to pieces then "reassembles" them.


I don't care what happens to the samples as long as it sounds good. However, the fact that the samples have been tampered with may be the reason why it doesn't sound good Smile

DG
Nuendo 6.03, 4.3
2 x Intel Xeon x5675 3.07GHz Hex Core
48GB RAM
Windows 7 (x64)Pro
RME Multiface II
Intensity
ATI HD5400 series graphics card
Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2005 00:15
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
DG wrote:
William wrote:
There is also maybe the most basic recording engineer's philosophy that is egregiously violated by synful - not to tamper with the basic waveforms of the original recording. To present them in the most pure fashion possible is the goal, which is what VSL has done, but synful literally rips them to pieces then "reassembles" them.


I don't care what happens to the samples as long as it sounds good.

DG


I have to agree with DG here, William. Your point is completely valid regarding the sustain portions, but I am referring to the critical 0.3 - 1 sec attack/note transitions, and the myriad variations that this demands. I don't think this is best addressed with sampling technology. Surely it would mean even bigger libraries? And the bottom line is that, even in it's infancy, Synful is doing a better job of interpreting and creating legato and portamento articulations than anything else I've heard so far, on a time-to-results ratio.

Am I ready to buy Synful? No
Am I excited at what this technology may lead to? Oh YES. Big Smile

Mike.
Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2005 01:51
by William
Joined on Sun, Nov 24 2002, USA, Posts 5704
Mike McCarthy -
I disagree. The VSL sampled legato on horns, flutes, clarinets, trumpets, etc., basically all of the performance instruments, are far beyond those Synful legato sounds.

DG -
That is why the art of recording has, in general, the underlying philosophy I spoke of.

Despite this, some combination of automated sample intelligence is obviously in the future. My problem is tampering with natural, perfect waveforms to get it. Of course many people don't mind because they don't hear the difference and are willing to accept compromise for convenience. I don't mean the people on this thread, but rather the people who are buying the hard sell advertising on the Synful website which arrogantly dismisses the entire art of pure sampling and pretends to offer something better. I was offended by that and it will take quite a bit to compensate for the way they stated that it is impossible to create a fluid line with single note samples as they are originally recorded in isolation. That is complete b.s. because when samples are recorded with - 1) consistency, 2) expressive and articulated variations and 3) actual legato - and then played with musicality in connected phrases they BECOME connected. That is music. That is how the human brain connects things that are isolated even in live performance. That is the whole philosophy behind the pure sampling approach.

So anyway I don't undertand how someone can state that the good thing about sampled instruments in VSL is just the sustain notes. When everyone agrees the actual recorded legato makes all the difference in the world and is probably the outstanding thing about the entire library.
Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2005 05:33
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
William wrote:
Mike McCarthy -
I disagree. The VSL sampled legato on horns, flutes, clarinets, trumpets, etc., basically all of the performance instruments, are far beyond those Synful legato sounds.


William -
Absolutely no argument - and I stated as much in my first post. But don't you agree that it is the potential of something like Synful that is exciting, especially if it could somehow be integrated into a future Perf Tool upgrade.

I never intended this to become a "Synful-is-better-than-VSL" debate, but rather a discussion of the merits of combining the two technologies.

Also, I'm certainly not suggesting that VSL is only good for sustains! [Wink]

Mike.
Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2005 13:36
by Rob Elliott
Joined on Sun, Feb 02 2003, Salt Lake City, UT, Posts 1657
Mike McCarthy wrote:
William wrote:
Mike McCarthy -
I disagree. The VSL sampled legato on horns, flutes, clarinets, trumpets, etc., basically all of the performance instruments, are far beyond those Synful legato sounds.


William -
Absolutely no argument - and I stated as much in my first post. But don't you agree that it is the potential of something like Synful that is exciting, especially if it could somehow be integrated into a future Perf Tool upgrade.

I never intended this to become a "Synful-is-better-than-VSL" debate, but rather a discussion of the merits of combining the two technologies.

Also, I'm certainly not suggesting that VSL is only good for sustains! [Wink]

Mike.



Well said Mike. No one disputes the superior results we can get using VSL. But in 5 years from now, we may look back and think - 'how did we originally use VSL.....?

I have invested the bulk of my sample library investment in VSL because I felt they had the 'vision' needed to continually innovate. I am quite confident this will be the case. Exciting times are ahead - that is for sure.


Rob
what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?
Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2005 16:39
by jc5
Joined on Wed, Jan 26 2005, Posts 180
Rob Elliott wrote:

I have invested the bulk of my sample library investment in VSL because I felt they had the 'vision' needed to continually innovate. I am quite confident this will be the case. Exciting times are ahead - that is for sure.


Rob


VSL certainly has the vision. They are the only one's who don't play games with their sampling and do things right and fully.

One of the things I find appealing about Synful, apart from the already mentioned qualities, is the fact that it is so very light on system resources - its power needs are minimal. You can run it on almost any sort of system, including semi-antiquated laptops.
If in future updates VSL's legato patches could become 'hybrids' - full untampered with wavs, but using some sort of advanced synthesis for the connections ands attacks (synful's specialty) which require little to no extra system resources, that might be a 'best of both worlds' scenario.

On the other hand, the end of the 2gig ram barrier is nearly at hand and such things won't really matter any more... I'm really frothing at the mouth for this... 16gigs in a single system - twice the loading power in one box than what you would currently have with a network of eight systems!
An Opus bundle user like me could load every last sample, and it would only take up a fraction of total system resources... no more network glitches every other day... ah pleasant speculations... [Wink][/i]
Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2005 16:52
by William
Joined on Sun, Nov 24 2002, USA, Posts 5704
I think that the VSL legato establishes it is unnecessary to fake legato at all. That was always what I wanted in the dim past of sampling - connected notes. And the sampling of legato seemed impossible since it always was tied to frozen performances like runs, glisses, etc. But the dissecting of the transition and inclusion of the target note was a stroke of absolute genius. So that is mainly what I disagreed with - that you have to use some complex manipulation of waveforms to synthesize or emulate legato rather than the actual recordings now possible.

Also, I don't believe what people keep saying - the future is a matter of "synthesis." It is a matter of musical intelligence in software applied to samples, mainly to automate the selection process and stop the user from having to use more than one track per instrument.

More than one track - that's funny, eh Jay? [Wink]
Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2005 17:31
by SyQuEsT
Joined on Mon, Jan 13 2003, Quebec, Posts 617
The best should be a full VSL orchestral library (with "musical intelligence") on a 20 Gb with 256Mb RAM Confused
Mathieu Laprise
Sonomax inc.
Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2005 17:46
by William
Joined on Sun, Nov 24 2002, USA, Posts 5704
We're talking about the future when presumably those numbers will be a joke.
Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2005 18:57
by SyQuEsT
Joined on Mon, Jan 13 2003, Quebec, Posts 617
Of course, i'm joking Big Smile
Mathieu Laprise
Sonomax inc.
Posted on Thu, Sep 22 2005 23:09
by SyQuEsT
Joined on Mon, Jan 13 2003, Quebec, Posts 617
The best should be an orchestral library you could play an old midi file and it sounds like a real orchestra.

Smile
Mathieu Laprise
Sonomax inc.
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