Kontakt 4 Issues

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dbrendon
Posts: 92
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2006 3:46 pm

Kontakt 4 Issues

Postby dbrendon » Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:08 am

This topic began as a 'PM' to hisdudeness in response to the topic:
"Using Forte on W7 64bit - general questions"
However, we thought the topic may be of interest to others, so we've created this new topic. Here is the discussion so far:

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Kontakt PlugIns

Sent: Mon May 30, 2011 11:23 am
by dbrendon

Hello hisdudeness,

I've recently purchased Alicia's Keys and Scarabee Vintage Keys, but haven't had much success in integrating these into my Forte environment. The issues I'm experiencing are:
1) Long load times - in fact when loading the clav - it can take 3 minutes - and then the doesn't play properly.
2) I can't figure out how to quickly switch between various patches.

I see from your post that you load multiple instances of Kontakt. I didn't try that yet, so perhaps that will help.

Can you tell me some more about how you're configuring these plugins in Forte?

For example, how do you switch from a Rhodes sound to a Wurly? Or how do you change the effects on the Rhodes?
I like to be be able to change setting dynamically. I typically do not create a separate scene for every possible setting I may need. I prefer to use MIDI to say 'turn on' a delay, or increase the amp drive.

Thanks for any advice,
- David

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Re: Kontakt PlugIns

Sent: Tue May 31, 2011 3:25 am
by hisdudeness
Hi David,

yes indeed I`m using multiple instances of Kontakt but I think that doesn`t change the speed of loading the samples nor does it provide any better performances of the plugin - except you`re running a 64bit enviroment using jbridge to encapsulate the "heavy" plugins for having their own dedicated portion of RAM.

I did a couple of other things to speed up my enviroment:
1. I`ve built my own Win7 OS by extracting all kind of parts which I don`t use (Mediacenter, all the networking and driver stuff etc.). This results in a faster boot time and lower RAM usage by the OS itself. It doesn`t affect directly the load time of large samples.
2. I`ve bought a SSD harddrive. THIS was the biggest improvement regarding load time of samples. I don`t know if you`re using a laptop or desktop, but make sure that your SATA controller supports 3Gbit/s and go ahead for a 128GB SSD. I can recommend the Crucial RealSSD which is around 200 Euro and very fast!. Alicia`s Keys and Scarbee Rhodes instruments are loaded below 10 seconds each. But note that Kontakt has this "purge" feature which makes the instrument available quite fast but still loading the samples in the background. So if I immediately start to play while the yellow purge led in Kontakt is still on you can hear while playing that still samples are missing. Another 10 seconds will remain until all samples are purged.
3. I`m using multiple instances of Kontakt for one reason: better overview. One for pianos, one for e-pianos, one for the rest of the Kontakt library (strings, brass and whatever else I need). But the first two instances are configured NOT to load samples on scene changes but instead loading all samples during the start of the entire rack. Therefore I use the "bank" mode in Kontakt, so I open a new bank and then put on different slots the instruments. In the options of the instrument (where you can also change the behavior of loading samples) you can then set the program/bank changes for every scene change in order to get the desired instrument "activated" from your bank. This works pretty well.

Let me know if you have more questions, happy to help!

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Re: Kontakt PlugIns

Sent: Tue May 31, 2011 6:31 am
by dbrendon

Thank you for the info!

I am using Forte on a laptop, Win7 64 bit. I have also invested is a SSD drive, which I found to be a huge improvement in load time of both Windows and Forte. Unfortunately there is some issue with Kontakt that results in very poor load time (on rack load) - not 10 seconds like you are seeing, but more like a minute (or more). I am also using jBridge.

I have been emailing Native Instruments support for the last 2 months, but unfortunately have not found them to be very helpful.

I was experimenting with setting up the Kontakt banks, but couldn't figure out how to quickly change patches using MIDI. This is probably because I already use 'Program Change' messages to change scenes in Forte, so I can't use them to change patches in Kontakt. How do you change patches?

Thank you,
- David

hisdudeness

Re: Kontakt 4 Issues

Postby hisdudeness » Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:43 am

And here is my last reply from our intimate chat, just did a copy & paste:

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Hi David,

I ported my entire laptop-music-system from Win7 32bit to Win7 64bit and I`m done so far except changing from 4GB to 8GB of RAM.

It is incredible! Even without using jBridge, only using 32bit VSTi`s so far with the 32bit Forte 2.2.018 I can now load all the instruments I ever wanted and the system is even faster then before with much less instruments.
The current test rack has included
- Kontakt 4 instance 1 on slot 1 is hosting with preloading samples in a multi-bank Alicia`s Keys and a Steingräber upright piano from the NI Akoustik Piano
- Kontakt 4 instance 2 on slot 2 is hosting 4 EPs from the NI Elektrik Piano (MK1 authentic suitcase; MK2 authentic pure; A200 authentic pure, E7 authentic pure) as well as all Scarbee instruments (Mark 1, A200, Clavinet and Pianet); makes 8 instruments all together in that bank.
- B4 on slot 3
- Hypersonic on slot 4
- Pro53 on slot 5
- MP3Play VST (for training sessions) on slot 6
- Sam!22 (wav-file player) on slot 7

The Hypersonic is going to be replaced by a third instance of Kontakt 4 providing NI Strings Session and all other stuff from the main Kontakt library which is changing frequently from scene to scene (like strings, brass, vibraphones etc.)

The complete rack loads from the double-click on the Forte button on my desktop until the audio streaming is started in exactly 30 seconds! Of course Kontakt is then still purging in the background, but this is even faster then with less instruments (exclude all Scarbee instruments and the Steingräber) on Win 7 32bit.
When I go to memory information in Forte is shows the following information:
Total physical memory: 4022,3MB
Usuable memory: 3334,22MB
Current rack size: 1564,41MB
Warning threshold: 3078,22MB

Seems quite fine, but I have to test it deeply when I`m at home this evening with my keys.

Some more information about how to configure mulit-banks for fast scene changes:
In one of your first messages you asked how I change e.g. from a Rhodes to a Wurly, so let`s take that example:
I go into the instrument slot 2 in my rack which is dedicated to E-pianos with a Kontakt 4 instance and the option in Forte`s Scene Commands set to "do not use per-Scene config...". In Kontakt I click on "files-new instrument bank" and I get a map with a lot of empty slots for instruments.
Then I go into my Kontakt libraries, dragging a Mark 1 into slot 001 and A200 into slot 2 of that instrument bank. Samples of both instruments will load. Then I go again into Forte`s Scene Commands and do the appropriate "Midi Program Changes" settings.
NOTE: THIS is saved individually for every scene you make, only the SAMPLES of that instrument won`t be loaded with each scene change, but those "Midi Program Changes" will change/be saved of course with every scene!
That`s it! Of course, a bit of extra work since you have to set always the appropriate "Midi Program change", but it makes your rack much faster.

So, keep on asking if something seems weird or confusing ;-) Also, just add this reply as well into the new thread if you open up one.

I also think about doing a video explaining everything while showing in Forte, which might be more catchy.

Best regards
hisdudeness

hisdudeness

Re: Kontakt 4 Issues

Postby hisdudeness » Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:44 am

And the last one from dbrendon:

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Hi Thorsten,

Thanks for all the great info!!

I posted the new topic, so feel free to add your last PM to the topic and we can continue the conversation there.

I need to figure out why I'm not seeing the same type of performance with Kontakt as you. It sounds like we have very similar systems. I can't remember my processor speed but it is an i5 with 4GB of RAM running Forte 2 (latest release) under Win 7 64 bit.

I use Midi PCs to control my scene changes, which is why I think I can't use PCs to also control my patch changes. How do you change scenes?

What sound card are you using? I'm using NI Audio Kontrol 1, but it doesn't perform as well (latency-wise)as the Echo MiaMidi that I was using in my old desktop machine.

FYI: Here is a list of my current VSTs
B4, MrRay (because of problems with Scarbee), The Grand, VB3, Wusikstation/ManyBass, Korg WaveStation and DSK Brass.

Thanks,
- David

hisdudeness

Re: Kontakt 4 Issues

Postby hisdudeness » Wed Jun 01, 2011 9:11 am

And to be continued:

Regarding the "Midi Program Change" feature within Forte`s "Scene Commands" tab vs. Midi PC to change scenes in Forte:
This is probably confusing a bit due to the naming but in fact something which doesn`t affect each other. You can easily change scenes in Forte with program changes send from your Midi equipment which is not at all processing anything in the Scene Commands "Midi Program Change" settings. I would describe it that way that Forte "sends" those Midi Program Changes you define within Scene commands internally to the instrument loaded in that very special module.

Regarding my laptop hardware:
Use seems to be way ahead power-wise with your machine since I`m using a Lenovo X61 with an Intel Centrino Pro T7300, 2Ghz, 4MB L2 cache, 4GB RAM and an 80GB Samsung SSD with something around 230MB/s read and 120MB/s write speed. Of course I`m not running the full Komplete 7 due to the limit of my storage but the essential instruments (for me) as listed above.
The soundcard I use is an EMU 1616m with the cardbus interface. Settings are: 5ms latency set in the EMU Asio control panel, in Forte the audio preferences are set to:
- Sampling rate 44,1khz (soundcard is working in 24bit mode, no 16bit supported)
- Buffer size: Auto (greyed out) due to the use of "Use preferred ASIO buffer size instead of minimum size" option. (Need to do this due to issues with that EMU device if not using this option)
- Number of Buffers: 4
- Global Volume Trim: -15db

Forte shows me an estimated MIDI Lateny of 33.15ms which is in fact something around 10ms like with my former soundcard since I feel no difference (or just getting used to the latency due to my age ;-)

Best regards
hisdudeness

dbrendon
Posts: 92
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2006 3:46 pm

Re: Kontakt 4 Issues

Postby dbrendon » Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:15 pm


hisdudeness

Re: Kontakt 4 Issues

Postby hisdudeness » Mon Jun 06, 2011 3:46 am

Hi David,

that`s right, you need to use different Midi CC´s for controlling Forte itself and to control the VSTi. Let me try to explain with an example:

1. Controlling Forte Scene Changes via Midi-Hardware:
I would choose a Midi Channel for controlling Forte itself which you don`t use at all for your VSTi, in my case I`ve choosen Midi Channel 16. So you open the Setlist Manager in Forte and choose for previous/next scene your Midi CC´s on Midi Channel 16, e.g. Midi CC 100 for previous, Midi CC 101 for next scene.
Provided you`ve already setup your Midi-Hardware, let`s say two buttons with the CC`s 100 and 101 on Channel 16 you should be able to step forth and back through your setlist.

2. Changing instruments on Kontakt 4 banks from scene to scene
Let´s assume you`re using the Scarbee Rhodes, playing them on Midi Channel 2 and you want to switch between Mark I, A200, Clavinet and Pianet. So you load Kontakt 4 and open a new instrument bank. Make sure that the Midi Channel for this instrument bank is set to Midi Channel 2. You will see many empty slots and then you just go ahead and drag & drop the four instruments on the banks 001-004. You will see that when you drop the instruments the samples will be already loaded (by the way make sure that you`ve set the instrument to "do not load samples on scene change".
Once this is done you have to set the Midi Program Changes within the Scene Commands tab of the instrument:
First you have to choose the right Midi Channel, so in this case you have to choose Midi Channel 2, then enter the PC information: Bank 0 (except you have multiple banks) and Program number: Please note that the program change numbers starts with 0 which is your bank slot 001.
So if you want to use the Clavinet in the current scene (which is on bank slot 003) then you have to enter here "bank 0 / program change 2".
This program change information you have to enter for each scene to let Forte change the bank slots with every scene change. If you forget to enter here something then this instrument will stay with the last choosen bank slot instrument.
Another thing especially with the Scarbee Rhodes: You know that you can choose per instrument from different presets regarding effects etc. Of course you can choose them as well once being dropped to a bank slot in Kontakt (double click the instrument on the bank slot and then click on the tab "Script Editor". But keep in mind that since you have choosen not to changes samples from scene to scene the setting in the instrument for effects etc will remain for ALL scenes were you use this bank slot. But I want to use different kinds of A200 Wurli`s with different effect settings? No problem, just add as many A200 instruments to the bank slots as you need for your variations of the Wurli and choose the desired effect settings within the Script Editor of each instrument on the different bank slots. As far as I have noticed the samples for an A200 will be only loaded once even if you have the A200 on ten different bank slots.

Regarding your soundcard settings I wonder why you are running with 88 buffers. Doesn`t that increase the latency very much? Doesn`t seem so regarding your posted Forte info but what happens if you set it for 2 buffers?

Best regards
hisdudeness

Dirk Offringa
Posts: 3508
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 3:44 am
Location: Sainte Anastasie, France
Contact:

Re: Kontakt 4 Issues

Postby Dirk Offringa » Mon Jun 06, 2011 5:18 am

Life would be much easier if I had the source code.

hisdudeness

Re: Kontakt 4 Issues

Postby hisdudeness » Tue Jun 07, 2011 6:12 am

Dirk, you`re right. I missunderstood since he wrote 88 buffers but I guess he meant 88 samples with buffers set to auto.

This seems a bit low, but I don`t know what you guys are running elsewhere. I just modified my settings yesterday again, settings are
buffer size = auto
number of buffers = 2
use preffered asio buffer size = yes
Shown samples: 312
Shown Midi latency: something around 22ms

Best regards
hisdudeness


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