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Dimension Strings
Last post Thu, Feb 13 2014 by Dominic.Peel, 32 replies.
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Posted on Sun, Jul 28 2013 18:12
by Aufderhaar
Joined on Fri, Dec 12 2008, Posts 4
I can't solve a very elementary thing...how do I get all 8 players to play at the same time? How can I make switch all of them at the same time to another way of performing?

Another thing...I can't find the samples where all of the players play at the same time

thanks a lot...Chris
Posted on Sun, Jul 28 2013 18:53
by Conquer
Joined on Thu, Sep 28 2006, Posts 812

Hi Chris, to hear all eight players simultaneously requires the Vienna Instruments Pro player, which has eight sound slots. With the Pro player you can access the factory 'All Violins' matrices, or create your own 8-player set-ups by loading Player 1's patch into sound slot 1a, Player 2 into slot 2a, and so on up to Player 8. VSL's 'Matrix' switching system enables you to switch between articulations; matrix cell A1 can contain straight sustains, cell A2 staccatos, etc. There are plenty of factory Matrices you can try, and you can also create and save your own.

To create a two-cell matrix, drag the lower right-hand edge of cell A1 and cell A2 will appear. To switch between A1 and A2, assign a MIDI controller (such as a keyswitch or MIDI CC) to the X-Axis (you'll find this under 'Matrix Control').

Though the eight violinists played together as a live ensemble, each player was miked separately, there are no samples of the whole group playing together. As with Dimension Brass, the main point of DS is individual player access and control.

Posted on Sun, Jul 28 2013 19:12
by Aufderhaar
Joined on Fri, Dec 12 2008, Posts 4
Thank you so much!! I see the "All Violins" preset, but cannot load it, even if I press "load"- the cells are kind of grey bluish...what am I doing wrong?
Posted on Sun, Jul 28 2013 19:54
by Conquer
Joined on Thu, Sep 28 2006, Posts 812

You're welcome Cool

Aufderhaar wrote:
what am I doing wrong?
Nothing! The matrices load with their cells disabled - to activate a cell, double-click on it! This is a useful system because if all cells were activated on loading, load times would be long and patches would use up a lot of memory.

Posted on Mon, Jul 29 2013 06:36
by Aufderhaar
Joined on Fri, Dec 12 2008, Posts 4
oh great, it sounds beautiful, thank you very very much!! May I ask you a last question- it is so elementary, that I feel like an idiot- but I can't find it in the videos or in the manual- what it the 'sound slot' you were talking about- I see the matrixes, the cells- but no slots to put the eight players?
Posted on Mon, Jul 29 2013 09:43
by Conquer
Joined on Thu, Sep 28 2006, Posts 812

Hit the 'Advanced' tab in the top right hand corner of the player and you'll see the slots (1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, etc.) Only four are normally visible, but if you drag a patch over onto the fourth slot, slots 5 - 8 should appear underneath! You can use the 'b' part of a slot to layer a second patch over the one you have in 'a'.

Posted on Mon, Jul 29 2013 10:04
by Aufderhaar
Joined on Fri, Dec 12 2008, Posts 4
I got it! Thank you!!!
Posted on Mon, Jul 29 2013 10:43
by Sami Boman
Joined on Wed, Mar 23 2005, Jyväskylä, Finland, Posts 198

I've been longing for some kind of solution that would allow me to load a specific articulation from all the players to a single cell. For example if I'd like to load dimension violins staccato patches of all the eight players to cell slots 1a-8a I have to pick them out one by one. So I'm wondering would it be possible to make some kind of a shortcut like by pressing down some key while loading the player 1 staccato to cell slot 1a the staccato patches of all the other players would automatically be loaded to the slots 2a-8a?

(I found it a bit hard to shape this question but I hope the point is understandable.)

Posted on Mon, Jul 29 2013 16:50
by Conquer
Joined on Thu, Sep 28 2006, Posts 812

Hi Sami, good idea. In the meantime, to speed things up a bit, you could load one of the 'All Violins' matrices, delete the articulations you don't need and save the remainder as a user matrix.

Posted on Mon, Jul 29 2013 19:13
by Paul
Joined on Sat, Aug 03 2002, Vienna, Posts 11895

Hi, 

There actually is an undocumented developer feature: 

It's possible to exchange instrument patches of loaded presets automatically with the STAND-ALONE version of VI PRO.

With the stand-alone version (only!) the following shortcuts can be applied:

"ctrl + alt + w" (WIN) and "command + alt + w" (OS X ) will open a dialog window which enables to exchange instruments with matching patch names.

For example P1 substituted with P2 will reload all patches with player 2 instead of player 1.

This feature can optionally be applied to an actual selected matrix or the whole preset.

Be aware that this feature is a "hidden developer tool" and is not officially supported.

Best, 

Paul

Paul Kopf
Product Manager - Vienna Symphonic Library
Posted on Tue, Jul 30 2013 00:32
by clamnectar
Joined on Sun, Jan 11 2009, Toronto, Posts 87
Sami Boman wrote:

I've been longing for some kind of solution that would allow me to load a specific articulation from all the players to a single cell. For example if I'd like to load dimension violins staccato patches of all the eight players to cell slots 1a-8a I have to pick them out one by one. So I'm wondering would it be possible to make some kind of a shortcut like by pressing down some key while loading the player 1 staccato to cell slot 1a the staccato patches of all the other players would automatically be loaded to the slots 2a-8a?

(I found it a bit hard to shape this question but I hope the point is understandable.)

I agree this is needed. I don't know if I'd want it implemented exactly as suggested by Sami, but I too have been struggling to manage the crazy number of patches and have found my setup time has increased astronomically for projects using dimension strings. I know there are VSL-made presets that have it all, but what happens when you want to be selective, or arrange things in a different or new way? You're stuck dragging hundreds and hundreds of little items into squares from a side menu that, quite unhelpfully, closes when you switch folders.

I've been going a bit insane with it. I spent several hours making my own set of presets one evening, only to realize that I hadn't thought of one articulation I might need. Redoing them took many more hours still. I need better tools for this! In fact, I would argue that each Dimension collection should have its own special version of VI Pro that simplifies many of these tedious operations into a simple GUI (for example, a single assignable parameter to change the number of players per voice, a single assignable parameter to change whether it's "regular" "open" or "force string," a velocity-fade style slider to change between vibrato and non-vibrato). All these things are completely possible to set up within VI Pro, they're just extremely unwieldy... thus, the special version idea. I don't know if VSL is working on this, but if you are, thank you in advance!!!

Posted on Tue, Jul 30 2013 07:43
by Paul
Joined on Sat, Aug 03 2002, Vienna, Posts 11895

Hello, 

I understand your situation.

clamnectar wrote:
I need better tools for this! In fact, I would argue that each Dimension collection should have its own special version of VI Pro that simplifies many of these tedious operations into a simple GUI (for example, a single assignable parameter to change the number of players per voice, a single assignable parameter to change whether it's "regular" "open" or "force string," a velocity-fade style slider to change between vibrato and non-vibrato).

You are right, there´s always room for improvement. And real improvement needs very good consideration. 

We have established the matrix system within one instance of our sample players, which let you arrange and switch between all kinds of setups (all the parameters you listed, actually) with a simple-keyswitch (alternatively, you can use Program Changes). 

To change the number of players per voice, check out the Auto-Voicing feature described on page 39 of the VI PRO Manual, assignable for each matrix!

Here´s what we do: We are working with the existing, very complete and consistently composed presets that Herb Tucmandl has added to each collection, and you know that you can always modify those (ideally, always the same way).

If you´re working with VI PRO, you should use the dedicated VI PRO presets, that are working with useful VI PRO features already assigned in the Basic View. 

Take advantage of the "Enabled/Disabled Cells" feature in VI PRO. The huge VI PRO presets come with disabled cells by default, and this way you also won´t miss an articulation (simply because you forgot that it is there, because you didn´t add it to your preset): 

Click on a cell, this will enable it (load the samples in the background).

Right-click on a matrix (in the matrix list to the left), you can "enable" the whole matrix.

In "Settings" (the icon left to the Basic/Advanved View), you can also enable the whole instance and find additional options (like "Force Enabled Cells"or "Enable Cells on MIDI Activity").

Please see the VI PRO Manual for more information. 

and check out the many video tutorials that also explain all the new features in detail.

Of course that should NOT keep you from creating your own presets, if you want to invest the time, but we do know how time-consuming it is to create a preset that fits your needs, for all instruments. 

The undocumented feature described above should help A LOT with this task. 

I am travelling quite a lot for VSL, talking to many users, and we´re also answering a lot of questions about Vienna Instruments (PRO) with our Support Team. From what I can tell, 95% of our VI PRO users don´t even scratch the surface of this powerful tool!

Please feel free to ask us questions, we´ll be happy to help with your setup. If you want to create unique presets, I strongly believe that our video tutorials will be a great source of inspiration!

Best,

Paul 

Paul Kopf
Product Manager - Vienna Symphonic Library
Posted on Wed, Jul 31 2013 10:16
by Conquer
Joined on Thu, Sep 28 2006, Posts 812
Paul wrote:

With the stand-alone version (only!) the following shortcuts can be applied:

"ctrl + alt + w" (WIN) and "command + alt + w" (OS X ) will open a dialog window which enables to exchange instruments with matching patch names.

For example P1 substituted with P2 will reload all patches with player 2 instead of player 1.

Thanks for this useful tip Paul - however, I can't see how it speeds up loading all 8 players' patches into a single player? As far as I can see, you still have to load them one at a time. Since using eight players together is such a central function, maybe VSL would consider adding a 'combi' feature to the Dimension Strings libraries? The combis would be exactly the same as the patches, but containing all the players rather than just one. The browser tabs could be expanded to PRESET / MATRIX / COMBI / PATCH. I don't think this approach would work for any other VSL collection, but it makes sense with DS strings.

Having said that, it only takes a minute or so to create an 8-player set-up, so it doesn't strike me too much of a hardship to have to do it one player at a time! The set-up can then be saved and quickly recalled, you only have to program it once. As for the point about browser windows automatically closing when you click on the next one, that confused me at first, but with the extra layers of sub-folders in DS I think it would be a chore to have to close each window separately.

Posted on Wed, Jul 31 2013 11:28
by herb
Joined on Mon, Aug 05 2002, Posts 4618

Here is a very quick and easy solution for building custom matrices: 

start with an empty matrix (which will become your custom matrix) and load also a factory matrix which holds the amount of players you need. (all or any subdivsion). This factory Matrix is just used as resource and any articulation you need can be copied and pasted to your custom matrix. with cell copy/paste. (right mouseclick on any cell and select copy)

With this workflow you don't have to search through the patch browser and you can built a very complex custom matrix within less than a minute.

best

Herb

Posted on Wed, Jul 31 2013 16:00
by Conquer
Joined on Thu, Sep 28 2006, Posts 812

There you go, easy when you know how - thanks Herb.

Posted on Wed, Jul 31 2013 18:15
by clamnectar
Joined on Sun, Jan 11 2009, Toronto, Posts 87

Thanks for the tips, and I do realize these options are there. And I acknowledge that I probably have a thing or two to learn about VI Pro. I just think, when you're getting into these bigger and more complex collections, maybe some custom tools would be extremely valuable to streamline things, so there is less time sepnt on technical fussing and more on music making. As is, they're really straining the usability of VI Pro.

Posted on Wed, Jul 31 2013 21:56
by julian
Joined on Fri, Jan 07 2005, UK, Posts 720

I've had some issues with loading 8 player presets and eventually resorted to the technique Herb described but what would be really useful would be 8 player patches. This would be more elegant than having to load a preset then copy paste individual patches. The patches exist in the presets it would just be great to be able to access them directly from the load menu on an individual basis.

I did a feature request for this last year!

http://community.vsl.co.at/forums/p/33208/209347.aspx#209347

Julian

Posted on Fri, Aug 02 2013 14:28
by Sami Boman
Joined on Wed, Mar 23 2005, Jyväskylä, Finland, Posts 198

Cell copy/paste doesn't work when you need cell xfades that aren't in the original matrix setups.

Posted on Fri, Aug 02 2013 15:28
by Conquer
Joined on Thu, Sep 28 2006, Posts 812

If it was easy for VSL to provide a complete set of 8-way patches for DS Violins, I suspect they would have done it already. It would involve at the very least a redesign of the Patch browser, and for that reason, I feel it may well not happen, though I would welcome it if it did. In the meantime, I don't think it's a gross inconvenience for users to have to create their own presets - people who do this stuff for a living are used to that kind of programming job.

Posted on Fri, Aug 02 2013 17:19
by clamnectar
Joined on Sun, Jan 11 2009, Toronto, Posts 87
Conquer wrote:

If it was easy for VSL to provide a complete set of 8-way patches for DS Violins, I suspect they would have done it already. It would involve at the very least a redesign of the Patch browser, and for that reason, I feel it may well not happen, though I would welcome it if it did. In the meantime, I don't think it's a gross inconvenience for users to have to create their own presets - people who do this stuff for a living are used to that kind of programming job.

It probably won't happen but that doesn't mean it wouldn't be useful. Of course it would require a redesign, but it's probably a very small task compared to recording, editing, sequencing, and testing the million+ samples in the DS collection, and it would make them more of a joy to use. 

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