Flexphrases import in Synfire

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janamdo's picture
janamdo
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Flexphrases import in Synfire

HALion can export(drag) midi flexphrases to Cubase and than export to a another program

Can Synfire handle (import) the midi flexphrases from HALion5 ?

Thanks  

Bagatell's picture
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Can't Halion export standard MIDI files?

 

I see no reason for Synfire dealing with proprietary formats and would rather have Cognitone use their development time to develop Synfire, not waste their time on someone elses format.

janamdo's picture
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Hi

 

Yes, i can record midi flexphrases from HALion5 and can drag them into Cubase or other DAW who support this.
This dragging cannot be done in Synfire... i must first drag them into Cubase and export to a midi file and than import them as a general midi file.

The flexphrases from HAlion 5 have a quality what surpasses standaard midiphrases
It seems that the flexphrases, they can be loaded in Synfire, although the Synfire AI alter them too much and they don't preserve the same quality found in HALion5, but still usable.
So their is no need for Cognitone wasting development time on this, because it has to do with the musical AI algorhythms.  

People who own a HALion5/HALion Sonic2 Vst i can use their midi flexphrase in Synfire , that 's all..and will be maybe suprized by them ?
I will setup a testlibrary of them.

Note: the best result for lively gitars and other sounds in HALion5 what do have chords under the triggerpads is to bring these chords by hand in Synfire and forget the Midi flexphrase.
Synfire AI will chance the notepositions for sure if you take them over from the HALion keyboard...make a progression in Synfire with the Halionchords and take the rootchords in Synfire  
The trick is to chance the chordnotes position in the phrase in Synfire till they match the same chordnote position of the HALion5 keyboard (it will/must be accepted by Synfire(allow): in all cases to chance chordcases: all achieved, so the AI of Synfire permits these new chordnotepositions ( it proves that the AI works good )) it differs now from the AI of Synfire--> but you get the same chordquality as in HALion5!

 

Example for 8 bars : 3 guitars(all picking) -->  steelstring--- (Bright(1)/Duett(2) and Gently(3)) --Picking /

3guitarsfromHALION5
More realistic guitar is with physical modelling..but for all those guitartypes?

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markstyles
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Hi Janamdo;

 

Do the flexphrases employ articulations in 6 -8th octave.. If they do.. I would strip them off, before sending to Synfire.. import static. When you're done with Synfire export back to your Daw, and add the articulations you stripped off.  You may have to readjust their placement if you used Pause, or Step commands..  Even if you import static into Synfire, it will try to transpose those super high notes into the 'range' of the instrument you are using.  (unless Andrew has changed that lately).  Keep those articulations out Synfire..  

 

On a similar note.  Tyros (and other instruments) make use of multiple similar patches (organ, leslie on, leslie slow, leslie fast..   Again since Synfire only wants to see one patch,  I strip those off when importing into Synfire and later add them back, when I've got the Midi back into your DAW.

 

Yamaha does the same thing with Motif and Tyros 4 'mega' voices.. I strip off the extremely high or (or some machines or virtual instrument might use extremely low notes).  I keep these on hand and sometimes change Tyros patch from regular to a mega patch.  I then add these articulation notes..  Sometimes I also just highlight certain notes in a passage, copy and transpose, and adjust for proper notes, to add articulations to a track that previously did not have them..   

markstyles

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Hi Mark,

Example : One finger FunkGLP gitar ( has 20 articulation and all articulations use the same phrase ( rhythm Funk 04 )

So, i get 20 midi phrase ..dragged into Cubase gives probably information what are the articulation notes ?
I must try this out by direct importing in Synfire and look what the musical result is..as earlier described..the imported flexphrase in Synfire is chanced and has not the mididata anymore the sounddesigners of  Cubase had in mind.
So even with stripped of articulationnotes..the body of the midi flexphrase is probably too much chanced
I must try this out if de imported mid flexphrase in Synfire gives satisfying musical results
Thanks for the idea!

 

markstyles's picture
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I just googled Halion.  It looks interesting.  they call it a rompler..  Is all MIDI data available to the user? 

 

I have a Motif XS rack.. I sometimes use some of their arpegiattors, but I always export the midi into Logic,  so that I have that data, should I later want to re-assign the midi performance to a different instrument.

 

I watched a demo, I'm gonna download the demo and play around with it.. I didn't check closely, but I believe I saw 'Audio Units'..  That is one short-coming of Logic; not being able to use VSTs.

 

Real Guitar made by MusicLab is a nice plugin..It sounds a bit similiar to what Flexphrases does.  Real Guitar needs two inputs.  one is just legato chords, and the 2nd is using any of the 1000 or so rhythm or picking patterns they have.. 

You create two tracks in your DAW one the legato chords,  then you drag out all the 1,2,4 bar rhythm or picking phrases.  The VST version also outputs the calculated MIDI notes.. but the Audio Unit doesn't.  

 

It's a drag, the real guitar sounds good, but there are times when I would rather get the midi performance to play another patch.

 

Importing the flexphrases static into Synfire, and making several libraries, one with bass riffs, guitar riffs, etc would be great.  You could then take from the flexphrase library to spice up your Synfire piece.. 

 

Most of the arranger kbds, have very short parts.  They are originally created by playing one measure in the key of C.  That pattern or riff is then calculated to fit the current chords you are playing in your left hand.. Some of them sound good.. Yamaha' s  "session" styles, are longer and really have a more real feel. Problem is they lend themselves to some chords better than others..

 

Band In A Box recently came out with "supermidi" styles.. These are actually midi performances several bars long.  They make much more interesting parts, then the one bar riffs.  Problem is there are only a limited amount of them (about 40).  I hope they make a lot more.. These will be easy to import into Synfire, and get a lot more mileage out of them. 

 

 

Mark

 

markstyles

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? Mark ... did you delete a post? I just got an e-mail notification, but when I came here, I couldn't find your post?

 

Anyway ... I cannot speak for Halion 5, but I have Halion Sonic, which also has Flexiphrases.

 

As far as I know, these are internal midi routines within the instrument and the midi is not exposed ... so you cannot export a riff in midi, you can only trigger it. That is what I think Jan means by 'articulations.'

 

I don't think they are what is normally considered an articulation, i.e., changing the played style of the virtual instrument from legato to marcato by selecting a different set of sampled notes. I think they are just phrases that can be used withing the instrument ... unless this has changed in Halion 5.

 

Halion Sonic is the replacement for my all time favorite virtual instrument, Hypersonic 2 from Steinberg and Wizoo. It is 16 channel multitimbral polyphonic with full GM2 compatibility ... powerful, compact and deep.

 

The Wizoo developers left Steinberg, became AIR (not to be confused with AiR, the famous audio software hacking group!) and were purchased by AVID and limited to Pro Tools. They made the fabulous Pro Tools Instument Expansion with Structure, Strike, Hybrid and Transfuser. AVID sold them recently to InMusic, which also owns the AKAI brand. They are purportedly issuing V2 of all the Pro Tools instruments, but in VST and AU as well as the new AAX.

 

More than you wanted to know, probably!

 

Como

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As far as I know, these are internal midi routines within the instrument and the midi is not exposed ... so you cannot export a riff in midi, you can only trigger it. 

Seems that the new Halion 5 can export the flexphrases as MIDI now. They write it on their website and obviously Jan has succeeded in doing that.

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Hi Prado,

 

Anyway ... I cannot speak for Halion 5, but I have Halion Sonic, which also has Flexiphrases.

 

As far as I know, these are internal midi routines within the instrument and the midi is not exposed ... so you cannot export a riff in midi, you can only trigger it. That is what I think Jan means by 'articulations.'

 Halion Sonic 2 has now a midi export for flexphrases too ( is the little brother of HALion 5 )
Articulation in HALion sonic 2/ HAlion 5 are sampled sounds of the instrument with articulations of that sound..like it is also in the sample libraries   ( eg HAlion Symphonic Orchestra )

A flexphrase has nothing to to with the articulations of a instrument in HAlion sonic 2/ 5
The  articulations are really layers of samples like you mention.. legato or mercato for violin  

 

I don't think they are what is normally considered an articulation, i.e., changing the played style of the virtual instrument from legato to marcato by selecting a different set of sampled notes. I think they are just phrases that can be used withing the instrument ... unless this has changed in Halion 5.

 Yes it was already in HAlion 4 there ..layers of sampled articulations  ..and not in Halion Sonic ?
Articulations in Halion 5 you can consider as used in the other sample libraries

 

 

 

 

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Hi Juergen

If you can use HALion Sonic 2 ..than you can also export midi flexphrases !

Prado's picture
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Hmmm ... maybe I need take a second look at the upgrade offer!

 

TY Jürgen

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Hi Jan ...

 

Yes it was already in HAlion 4 there ..layers of sampled articulations  ..and not in Halion Sonic ?

 

I didn't mean to imply that articulations are not in Halion Sonic. While I'm not sure if there are any or not, it would just depend on the patch.

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Hi Mark,

Exporting a midi flexphrase for using in HALION Sonic 2 or 5 and than import static in Synfire gives the same flexphrase ( the flexphraser must be set off than )
But composing with synfire is not static .. so Synfire will chance the again transformed static flexphrase in a chanced  midi flexphrase--> now the original flexphrase is chanced ...and that is the problem here
Will this altered midi flexphrase be musical enough ?

 

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Hi all:

 

I appreciated greatly all that information Prado.. Yes I did edit the post, after I googled it (10 minutes probably). This post is about SFP and also a procedure I use to edit in Logic.  Should be able to work in any daw.  

 

Jamamdo:  I have also imported static phrases, that had a nice melody I like; and often SFP modifies them too much for my liking..  errr... Unfortunately I broke my ILOK this morning, so I cannot boot SFP  (after losing it, breaking is my most depised reason for hating Ilok) another $50... 

 

Not being able to open SFP right now, I forget the exact command you use.. It's the one where you tell SFP to stick just to chords, scales, or most 'loose'. (bad wording).  This command will accomodate 'passing' and 'chromatic' notes.  Another situation here is that normally when importing a MIDI, SFP gives equal opportunity to all midi channels (or so I assume, please someone here rectify) when creating it's own chord track. 

 

For me I always create or use a 'chord' track .. This is forced legato chords, so that 'Logic can analyze them', so I have a visual chord reference as I work on a song. This is available in all editors,  It's great for jamming along, cause you always know what chord is coming next so you can make use of your own 'Artificial Intelligence' on what notes to play.

 

Tyros 4 needs these chords for its part generators.. Band In A Box also needs/create one to work also.. Often I will use BIAB to generate a melody or solo, then import into SFP or Logic. 

 

I notice that all three programs 'interpret' the chords correctly somewhere between 30% - 100% depending on the complexity.

 

BIAB let's you specify which MIDI tracks to use; you can assign some or all MIDI channels to chords, melody, solo, and bass. This is a very useful feature.. One I hope someday SFP will employ, or better yet a weight factor of 1 - 10 for each MIDI channel.. 

 

When trying to employ a particular musical phrase into SFP, if you 'analyze' it, you must also have specific chords to support a particular note.  In SFP manual it mentions this, that you will need to add additional chords, in order for SFP to correctly interpret a particular MIDI phrase..  You can get into way too much detail, employing complex chords, temporarily stepping outside the current modal scale or key, for SFP to 'know' what you are trying to do.. Synfire Pro has to do this, it cannot 'look up and see the guitar player mouthing "C7b13" and moving his guitar neck up and down..

 

Currently rather than get too complex with the chords, I leave the track 'static'.. or else I take what SFP does, and manually  correct them in Logic.. so yes Janamdo, you're going to sometimes have issues, getting SFP to do exactly what you want it to do all the time.  

 

In the last two years, I've become much more interesting in creating single note lines for some of my instrument parts.  So yes, a lot of times different instruments are 'going outside' the norm.. This is where the magic of music comes in.  But it makes it much harder to be exactly precise, on what is exactly happening.  (How many times have you bought sheet music to discover it really is not an accurate representation of what's on the record).

 

To facilitate the correction of errors, I use Logic's score editor, with chord symbols using Logic's "insert chords from Global Chord Track".  I have also created a 'chord guide' in Logic to use on piano roll editor.  I take my chord track, and copy/transpose by octaves, so that I end up with a track with 6 octaves of chords.. These notes are all shrunk to a minimal length and muted, so I can highlight two or more tracks in Logic's piano roll editor.  This makes it much easier to correct and add additional notes, without even having to hear it..  

 

I have included a jpg of how I use Logic Piano roll editor sometimes.. In the upper section the tracks that are 'black' are all highlighted in they appear in the piano roll editor.. The grey notes is the chord track transposed/copied 6 octaves. The hot pink is the bass, the purple is the piano, the yellow is a guitar part, and the green is an organ solo. Notice how many notes are outside the chord and scale at any given point.  These look wrong, but sound fine, in fact, it is one of the reason why 'music works'.  You create dissonance and resolve it to consonance. 

 

NOTE;  you can use Logic's chord analyzer, which could be able to be insert chord names at the top of any editor; the unfortunate part of that is that Logic creates a global transpose, which is applied to every track, even if you tell Logic, the chord track is 'for display only' and you lock the transpose option for each track..  The problem arises that if you try to move or copy/repeat any notes on a track, they automatically have the 'chord transpose' applied to it, and your song quickly and permanently becomes garbage. You cannot undo the global transpose..  A major defect.  Still in Logic 9 don't know if they changed it for Logic X.  If you are positive about the structure of your song, you can then use Logic's "analyze chords", to add, correct individual notes. 

markstyles

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Yes, there is no escape to this behaviour of Synfire

Jamamdo:  I have also imported static phrases, that had a nice melody I like; and often SFP modifies them too much for my liking..  

I use the chords under the triggerpads found in HALion designed by Steinberg and i must store them in a library
It is laboroius, but than you are assured to have a outstanding chordquality for the instrument
In Synfire there are no SABT  chords possible with the chord symbols, so you must construct them by yourself. 

 

I think you wil be delighted what Cubase 7 with the new chord features offer and together with HALion
You can drag the midi flexphrase direct in Cubase and with the chord features ( yes with a dedicated chord track now in Cubase 7: new ) you can make  realistic arrangements too.
 

 

 

 

 

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Mark ...

 

Your use of the muted notes in the key editor is a workaround for the idea I was asking about in the below post!

 

http://users.cognitone.com/content/topic-midi-key-editor-question

 

Also, 'Static' isn't static, but relatively static and subject to the SFP/E chord progressions. It would be nice to have an 'absoultely static' independent of the progression option!

 

And, for use of 'absolutely static,' a drag and drop feature for something SFP/E doesn't need to analyze. Oh, well ... I alway end up back in my sequencer anyway.

 

Jan ... after not completely understanding the changes in Flexiphrase in Sonic Halion2, yesterday I got an e-mail from Steinberg announcing Halion5 and Halion Sonic2. I think ... after watching those videos, despite the cheesy tagline from the narrator about 'in your heart' at the ends of the videos ... I'm going to be downloading the update today.

 

Prado

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I think like most of us here. we are heavily invested in our own  applications..  I've been using Logic Pro for over twenty years, and have no desire to but and learn a new one, unless Apple completely screws up.. I had a friend move from Cubase to Logic about 9 years ago.. It wasn't to bad.. But I find, he is often unaware of work arournds or many of the esoteric or poorly documented features..

 

I'm sure  the Cubase, Nuendo, and Cakewalk users aren't likely too 'jump ship', cause they have invested so much time into learning what they have..

markstyles

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Prado .. i got the impression that Cubase 7 (chord features)  and HALion Sonic 2/ HALion 5 are also a impressive composing combination now together.
"in your heart"is a strong advertising ...is promising..or not ?
I am focussed on Synfire for composing ..so Cubase has not my first attention yet


I can imagine that chancing to a anohter DAW if you are used to one for many years..is not easy and pay 1000 USD for Cubase and HAlion is not cheap .. that is the restriction ..the price.   



 

 

Prado's picture
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@Jan

Prado .. i got the impression that Cubase 7 (chord features)  and HALion Sonic 2/ HALion 5 are also a impressive composing combination now together.
"in your heart"is a strong advertising ...is promising..or not ?
I am focussed on Synfire for composing ..so Cubase has not my first attention yet

 

I think they will compliment each other in a wonderful way. Since I am a long time owner of Cubase since SX3 and also own Halion Sonic ... the upgrades are not too bad.

 

For any interested in the Chord Track, you should see this video. It is amazing how it is also integrated with Variaudio 2 for manipulation of both midi and audio.

 

 

Prado

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"in your heart"is a strong advertising ...is promising..or not ?

 

The phrase is way too sentimental to be taken seriously, in my opinion. Maybe for selling DeBeers diamonds for engagement, but not for a 'professional' music application.

 

It is probably also the narrator's voice and tone. He sounds like a 20-something who is as full of life experience and 'gravitas' as an empty paper bag.

 

Prado

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 Yes, it seems that Steinberg thinks this a  program HALion has new  potential.
Ok advertising but i goes on  serious content...

I advise not to upgrade to Cubase 7 and wait if they come up with something more interesting stuff  :)
like : modulation and  improved score editor 

I am focussed on Synfire alone .. i don't see how Cubase can attribute to my composing.  

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