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Ensemble versus Orchestra
Last post Sun, Sep 04 2005 by DG, 10 replies.
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Posted on Thu, Sep 01 2005 15:57
by Mike Greene
Joined on Fri, Aug 12 2005, Los Angeles, CA, Posts 13
I assumed that as a VSL Pro Edition owner, I would of course need to buy GigaStudio Orchestra, but as I was getting ready to order, I noticed GigaStudio Ensemble (for almost $200 less) has 160 voices, the same as my previous GigaStudio 160 (on a Pentium 4 2.4Ghz PC) which has always chugged along just fine.

Is the power of GigaStudio Orchestra really necessary? I'll be on a Pentium 4 3.2Ghz machine, so will it be able to handle more than 160 voices anyway? Or is there some other reason besides polyphony for getting Orchestra instead of Ensemble?

- Mike Greene
Posted on Fri, Sep 02 2005 03:57
by techtim
Joined on Tue, Aug 17 2004, Perth, Australia, Posts 10
You need to examine your needs carefully. For example I'm glad I bought Orchestra, not because of the polyphony but because I wanted to get realistic orchestral sounding play back. The best way to do this is to load instrument articulations into separate MIDI channels. If you want a whole orchestra (say 12 instruments, 6+ articulations) you rapidly run out of the 4 ports you get with Ensemble. Also I have the flexibility to "waste" ports. For example, to save time I have my MIDI keyboard mapped to port 1 with no samples loaded, all the samples are loaded into midi channels on the other ports allowing me to quickly select any articulation for the keyboard by using the the GS3 port mirroring and MIDI channel select.

On the polyphony question, you would think that 12 instruments playing only one note at a time would have a polyphony of 12. Not so, since the release of the first note is still playing when the second note is struck. if your playing notes in rapid succession there is clearly a possibility that the third note is struck before the first note is gone. Hence, for a 12 instrument classical orchestra I get polyphonies of around 84.
Posted on Fri, Sep 02 2005 05:10
by Martin Bayless
Joined on Sat, Oct 25 2003, New York, USA, Posts 266
I've got ensemble on all three of my machines precisely because ram limitations kick in MUCH sooner than polyphony. For me, orchestra versions would just take money away from more impotant things. Do what makes sense for you!
Posted on Fri, Sep 02 2005 06:27
by gugliel
Joined on Wed, Aug 25 2004, Posts 383
It's true that polyphony is not a primary reason to prefer orchestra -- the 8 ports rapidly became important to me when I upgraded; the libraries were only somewhat valuable; gigapulse is useful and powerful though sometimes frustrating. Hard to tell what will become important to you: you might consider how many separate midi channels you use today --- techtim's description fits my use pretty well too.
Musical examples at www.soundclick.com/guglielmo
Posted on Fri, Sep 02 2005 08:55
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
I have used more than 160 voices on many occasions (try playing a piano with the sustain down); remember that the layer patches for other instruments can use 8 voices just for one note. However the other thing to remember is that Gigapsulse is only available with Orchestra. As far as RAM goes it seems that you can load many more instruments into GS3 than GS 2.5 with the same RAM, so I think that for such a small extra cost you could end up kicking yourself if you didn't get Orchestra.

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 Fri, Sep 02 2005 14:55
by dpcon
Joined on Sat, Oct 12 2002, Los Angeles, Posts 1646
Don't bother with anything less than the Orchestra (unlimitied) polyphony. Your P4 3.2 will give you three times as many voices. VSL uses tons of voices. I had one machine up to 400 voices and I didn't have that many midi tracks going. I have a P4 3.4. Even my P4 1.8 gives me 250 voices with the Orchestra version.

Dave Connor
Dave Connor
Posted on Fri, Sep 02 2005 18:31
by Mike Greene
Joined on Fri, Aug 12 2005, Los Angeles, CA, Posts 13
Hmmm . . . I can see how more than 4 ports could be very useful. Even more importantly, I didn't realize Gigapulse was not in the Ensemble version. Looks like that's what I'll do!

Thanks very much for the advise! Smile

- Mike Greene
Posted on Fri, Sep 02 2005 18:53
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
Mike Greene wrote:
Hmmm . . . I can see how more than 4 ports could be very useful. Even more importantly, I didn't realize Gigapulse was not in the Ensemble version. Looks like that's what I'll do!

Thanks very much for the advise! Smile

- Mike Greene


However, be aware that you will have to make a copy of the PT to use ports 5-8.

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 Sat, Sep 03 2005 22:51
by gugliel
Joined on Wed, Aug 25 2004, Posts 383
DG wrote:

However, be aware that you will have to make a copy of the PT to use ports 5-8.

DG


I don't use the performance tool at all, so maybe this is wrong: but couldn't you use 4 ports WITH the PT and 4 ports without? Many instruments would have no benefit provided by the PT at all, and many more could be used with understanding by implementing keyswitches and patch changes in midi events.
Musical examples at www.soundclick.com/guglielmo
Posted on Sun, Sep 04 2005 10:21
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
gugliel wrote:
DG wrote:

However, be aware that you will have to make a copy of the PT to use ports 5-8.

DG


I don't use the performance tool at all, so maybe this is wrong: but couldn't you use 4 ports WITH the PT and 4 ports without? Many instruments would have no benefit provided by the PT at all, and many more could be used with understanding by implementing keyswitches and patch changes in midi events.


I think not, at leat I've never manage to get it to work this way. Using a copy seems the best option all round.

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
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