SM Violin, Viola (Piazzola & Faure)

Please post here with attachments (Mp3 or zipped files, up to 5 MB) your pieces made with our Virtual Instruments
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dchapiro
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Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:26 pm

SM Violin, Viola (Piazzola & Faure)

Post by dchapiro » Mon Apr 17, 2017 11:08 pm


ModernBard
Posts: 57
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:13 am

Re: SM Violin, Viola (Piazzola & Faure)

Post by ModernBard » Wed Apr 19, 2017 2:53 am

Thanks for sharing these, Dan. Did you record that whole Oblivion piece live along with the piano player? If so, quite impressive recording.

How did it feel to control with the Yamaha controller? I use the Akai EWI-USB and to my ear you are achieving a more subtle note attack than what I can get from my controller. It's pretty handy to have that level of control in some cases but in my listen of the Oblivion track it seems like the violin needs a sharper note attack on some notes without necessarily being louder. I'm not sure whether that would be from a higher note-on velocity or the curve of the breath controller channel. I tried experimenting a bit to see, but on my EWI I couldn't achieve the same sound as yours. I personally find it challenging to use an EWI to control strings realistically, but even with that they are still loads of fun to play.

-John

dchapiro
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Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:26 pm

Re: SM Violin, Viola (Piazzola & Faure)

Post by dchapiro » Wed Apr 19, 2017 2:38 pm

Hi John,

Thank you for your comments! Yep, we recorded it in one take (I still have to learn how to patch portions together). We put an iPhone+RodeXY mic right by the piano (so less of the violin would bleed into that track). At the same time we also recorded SWAM-Violin/GarageBand, directly to wav. Afterwards we merged the two tracks with Audacity.

About the attacks, I set Exp.Curve=0.4, and env.attack speed=4.2, and I am using mostly the breath flow. Tonguing yields higher note-on velocities, and although in places I do use it, I think it gives too sharp an attack (unlike a string - but I'm not a string player, so I may be mistaken). BTW, in some places I simply don’t have the speed, so I slur regardless of what’s in the score… What do you do and what values do you use?

I don’t like of the WX-5 that the keys go click-clack like a toy instrument, and I have not found a way to use its “reed” (too soft for me, and unpleasant). I use just the recorder mouthpiece, so I have too many CCs driven by BC…

To enrich the expression, I would like to find out how to plug a software filter in OSX (between the WX and SWAM), to map pitchbend (which I am not using now), to some CCs. Or I should get a set of pedals. Also I was thinking about getting an EWI, to address some of these things, so I am curious about your experience, and the EWI’s pros and cons for classical music.

Best
--Dan

ModernBard
Posts: 57
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:13 am

Re: SM Violin, Viola (Piazzola & Faure)

Post by ModernBard » Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:49 pm

Yep, we recorded it in one take (I still have to learn how to patch portions together). We put an iPhone+RodeXY mic right by the piano (so less of the violin would bleed into that track). At the same time we also recorded SWAM-Violin/GarageBand, directly to wav. Afterwards we merged the two tracks with Audacity.
Nicely done!
About the attacks, I set Exp.Curve=0.4, and env.attack speed=4.2, and I am using mostly the breath flow. Tonguing yields higher note-on velocities, and although in places I do use it, I think it gives too sharp an attack (unlike a string - but I'm not a string player, so I may be mistaken). BTW, in some places I simply don’t have the speed, so I slur regardless of what’s in the score… What do you do and what values do you use?
My SWAM settings are nearly identical. I think the difference is the controller. I feel like on mine it needs more breath to trigger the note on, but that could be a setting on the EWI that I could adjust. The EWI controller settings aren't particularly intuitive, but I do like the device as a controller.
To enrich the expression, I would like to find out how to plug a software filter in OSX (between the WX and SWAM), to map pitchbend (which I am not using now), to some CCs. Or I should get a set of pedals. Also I was thinking about getting an EWI, to address some of these things, so I am curious about your experience, and the EWI’s pros and cons for classical music.
I really like the Akai EWI-USB. The octave rollers were the hardest part to get used to for me, but it's definitely possible to adapt and after that the EWI+SampleModeling makes for very effective immersion into the instrument. It makes practicing very rewarding. The EWI has a built in bite sensor which makes very good use of subtle pitch bend for vibrato on most of the SM instruments. It also thumb pitch bend pads for more dramatic slides and swoops that works for trumpet and trombone I've found. I don't have any experience with the Yamaha though to make a direct comparison.

In terms of pedals, I'm not good at controlling continuous expression pedals, but I do use simple on/off switches for engaging some effects like portamento for violin while using EWI to control the notes and dynamics. Hope that helps.

-John

dchapiro
Posts: 21
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:26 pm

Re: SM Violin, Viola (Piazzola & Faure)

Post by dchapiro » Wed Apr 26, 2017 2:22 pm

Hi John - Thank you for posting on your experience with the EWI. About the flow sensor, I don't know how it's done in the EWI, but in the WX5 there are two analog adjustment screws for the 0 and the gain. It's tricky to set them right, because the difference between the WX sounding on its own vs being sensitive to a low flow is way too small. Hopefully there's a better mechanism in the EWI. BTW, some friends said the piano was too soft in Oblivion, so I attenuated the violin track another 3dB. Best --Dan

ModernBard
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Re: SM Violin, Viola (Piazzola & Faure)

Post by ModernBard » Thu Apr 27, 2017 6:34 am

The settings on EWI-USB are all via software control from custom app from Akai. Not sure about the other EWI models though.

Kobir
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Re: SM Violin, Viola (Piazzola & Faure)

Post by Kobir » Fri Apr 28, 2017 11:09 am

I played both WX5 and EWI USB for years. Each have benefits and disadvantages. The breath sensor and bite resolution on EWI is higher, but the Yamaha reed is much more natural for sax players. Both have different strange octave rollers that takes months to get used to. I don't like the plastic keys noise of Yamaha, but the EWI touch sensors also can be challenging for quick transitions.

The SWAM engine have very detailed midi mapping that can be tweaked well for both, so I am not sure the issues are with the instrument. Pitch band range can be tweaked in SWAM to your liking as well.

Anyway, if you consider an upgrade, the new Roland AE-10 Getting good reviews as VSTi controller and several EWI and Yamaha players have moved to that.

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