Midi control automation / key transpose

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mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Fri Nov 01, 2013 4:04 pm

Hi Forte experts.

I am about to set up a computer system for live playing with a master keyboard. I intend to use Forte as a versatile VST host in the center of the software setup.

Now I am positive that I can program multiple scenes with one or more VST instruments enhanced by VST effects, and switch between these scenes by Midi program change events.

I suppose I can route the sliders, knobs, and push-buttons on the Master-Keyboard to control inputs of the VSTs, differently in each scene.

I would like to make use of (at least) two features that I did not easily find in the Demo:

1) Continuous Controller Morphing:
When using an B3-Organ VST, I would like to control all the drawbars with a single slider on the Master-Keyboard (the same technique would be handy with other VSTs as well.) I would like to create two sets of parameter settings for the controls in questions and with the slider I would like to blend one setting to the other (linear interpolation of all the CC values in question). How can this be done ? Of course there could be another slider controlling different CCs (of different VSTs). Of course another scene would have it's own setup on this behalf. (NI "Kore" heavily uses this technique, even a lot more sophisticated: using eight CC parameter setups and control the blending in a two-dimensional way way with two input CCs .)

2) Key Transpose:
I would like to press a pushbutton on the master keyboard followed by a key to set a general key transpose that supposedly should be done before the midi-data is sent to the VSTs, so that the sounds of all VST instruments is transposed. (No idea if this is better done globally or on a per scene base.

How is this doable (Forte "out of the box" or using certain "Midi-function" VSTs) ?

Thank for listening
-Michael

DarkKman
Posts: 168
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 10:07 am

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby DarkKman » Tue Nov 05, 2013 4:58 am

Hi there,

I've been meaning to reply to this for a while but been a little busy at work. I think I have a solution but... well, let's see...

1) Continuous Controller Morphing:
You can assign the same MIDI CC to multiple parameters, so for example if you have a fader which outputs MIDI CC #21 and you want this fader to control Filter (i.e. as fader moves up, filter level increases) and REDUCE resonance (as fader moves up, resonance level decreases). If this kind of scenario describes the kind of thing you do (I don't use drawbar organs so don't know how they work) then the below should do what you want;

1 - Expand the VSTi and select MIDI Routing.
2 - Select the MIDI Port and Channel your fader is outputting on
3 - Then on the right of this you will see all the Key Range and Controller tabs for that Port/Channel
4 - Click on "Controllers"
5 - In the "From" column, select 21 (that was the e.g. I am using from above - you select whatever MIDI CC your fader is outputting).
6 - In the "To" column, right click and select the parameter you want to amend. In this example I'll select Filter Cutoff. Now as I want the fader to operate 'normally' I'm not going to adjust any of the other attributes

Now to add another "parameter" to be affected by the same MIDI CC;
1 - follow steps 1-5 above (if not already there)
2 - right-click the "To" column and select "Add Layer" - this means you can now select ANOTHER parameter to adjust using the same MIDI CC
3 - to invert the movement, so when fader is 0 (bottom) but parameter is max value, simply enter Max=0, Min=127 in the corresponding columns "Max" and "Min"

2) Key Transpose:
Not sure about this I'm afraid. I think this can be done per scene via the Scene & Setlist window but I'd need to check how this is done. I'm not sure that the scene settings can be changed via MIDI CC however... I'll look into this later (likely tomorrow when I get a chance).

Hope the above does what you're looking for...! :)

*edit*
In addition to adjusting the transpose per Instrument (via MIDI Routing -> Key Range 1, 2, 3) you can adjust the Transpose for a whole scene or song by going into "Setlist Manager" (the little screen button) and adjust transpose for a whole song/scene by double clicking in the "Trn" column. Still not sure how you'd control this via your keyboard - I assume you need these as the band-master or whomever says "lets play this in another key today" and you don't want to have to go into this page... But this will give you a global type option.

mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:01 pm

Thanks for you answer.
(1) seems a little bit too complicated to be useful e.g. with morphing the 9 drawbar slider of a vritual B3.

(2) It does not seem that Forte provides "transpose definition in realtime via Midi" out of the box.

Both this In fact this is not a real problem. I already did test the "Midi Transpose" (demo-) VST that is available in Delphi sourcecode and I am able to do Delphi programs. So I suppose I can create appropriate VSTs to use with Forte myself.
I'll let you know when I come up with something useful in case somebody else might be interested, too.

-Michael
(First I need to get the hardware up and running and purchase a permanent License for Forte. )

mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Fri Nov 08, 2013 5:48 am

In fact I did order the hardware and thus I hope I can do some test soon, and also order a fore license :) .

So I dare to ask some more questions.

I want to create and use some (Delphi based) VST plugins to do some special things Forte does not seem to provide out of the box.

Of course I will be happy to offer the programs to any Forte user who wants them for free.

These plugins will be pure Midi filters and don't output any audio. (AFAIK, Forte requires them to offer a dummy audio output).

The plugins will have a GUI (AFAIK Forte requires them to have one, but it's useful in any case.)

- Are there any additional requirements Forte imposes ?

AFAIK, forte can issue predefined program change commands to the plugins included in a scene, when the scene is selected by an incoming program change (from a master keyboard)

- Can Forte also issue predefined continuous controller settings at that point ?

- Can forte read back continuous controller settings from a running plugin ?

It would be helpful if a live-usable midi Filter can keep its internal status independent of the Forte scenes.

- Is it possible to assign (such) a (midi filter) plugin to multiple scenes in a way that it does not get restarted when the scene changes, even if an intermediate scene does not include this pluigin ?

Thanks for any tips,
-Michael

DarkKman
Posts: 168
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 10:07 am

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby DarkKman » Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:30 am


mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Fri Nov 08, 2013 11:46 am

Of course the midi filter offered by Forte would in realtime in fact do what is required for" Morphing". But it seems not to be practical to configure it for this purpose.

So I intent to do a VST plugin myself, that has a surface with a number of sliders, that can be moved with the mouse and by received CCs signals from external hardware (while these CCs are sent to the VST-instrument(s) that are routed "behi9nd" my plugin, as well to hear the resulting sound).

It has an A/B switch and with that, two virtual sets of sliders, than can be shown and their values are stored in a "program".

Now another external CC (Slider on the masterkeyboard) is used to "Morph" (doing linear interpolation between the two sets in the same way as you describe that Forte can do it).

What do you think ?

-Michael

mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Thu Nov 14, 2013 1:59 pm

Follow up.

I intend to us a Window 7 64 Bit system and the Forte 64 bit version. I understand that the readily available VST's I intend to use can be installed as 64 Bit versions.

Now I plan to do my own "pure Midi-Filter" VSTs. I could do this using the "Delphi" programming system. I do have the VST SDK for this and already did some initial tests with same (on a 32 Bit system).

I understand that Delphi (at least the version I have) can't produce 64 bit software, so the VST's I'll be doing are pure 32 Bit thingies.

Can I use them in a 64 bit environment ?

Do I need jbridge even for pure midi / no audio stuff ?

Does it impose any problems when theses VSTs are 32 Bit ?

I can do C software and so I _could_ do 64 bit VSTs instead if I could be provided with an appropriate SDK . (No audio and no fancy graphics necessary, so the ways of the C SDK might be rather easy to learn.)

Any comments ?

-Michael
Last edited by mschnell on Sat Nov 16, 2013 11:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

ChristianRad

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby ChristianRad » Sat Nov 16, 2013 6:01 am

Hey,

interesting thread.
Did you ever think about using Plogue Bidule? I have that program and it works very nice and adds endless midi (also audio too) filter options. Check this out!

mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Sat Nov 16, 2013 11:22 am


ChristianRad

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby ChristianRad » Sat Nov 16, 2013 10:03 pm

Bidule is a full audio and midi filter and routing system. I wouldn't compare it to Forte, because Forte is a real live performance tool.
Maybe you can reach the same results with Bidule you can reach with Forte, but that would be a lot of work.

Nice idea with the embedded PC and good luck! I do try this for almost a year now and it's nearly impossible in my experience. First in the technical way. I first used Mainstage, but that gets unstable and buggy, if you have a big concert (in my case up to 60 patches). Now I do try Forte but I have crashes and troubles with that too, so I do need to access the computer also on stage. Maybe you are more lucky ;)
In the second place it's the point of performance. I really can not remember all splitzones and layers on my whole setup. In my eyes this is the biggest issue in Forte. With Mainstage, one look at the monitor and I knew where my splits were. No chance with Forte... sadly.

Back to Bidule: I don't think, that it's convenient to build such a setup with Bidule... but! I had no crashes or other troubles with it. So, if you want to set up your rig just one time without making major changes in the future, I would give it a try. But setting it up is not easy and requires work and a lot of reading. It is indeed possible to build something you need with Bidule. But Forte is more user friendly of course ;)

You can say, that Bidule is an alternative to MAX for live...

mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Sun Nov 17, 2013 2:35 am

Hmm.

I did not experience any crashes with Forte during my initial tests.

I did read positive comments about Forte's stability (e.g tested vs cantabile), that is my my main focus is on Forte. OTOH, I suppose that Reactor offers better stability due to it's Linux OS which is better suited for embedded devices than Microsoft stuff. But as the VST's are not done with Linux in mind, there seem lots of them failing in Receptor.

I do hope that the Forte "powers" read your compliant and will offer help on that.

Happily Forte offers a decently usable trial version. Or do you suggest that crashes occur only after one hour ?

-Michael

ChristianRad

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby ChristianRad » Sun Nov 17, 2013 6:58 am

No, it's not limited in time.

I'm on Win8.1 64bit. Maybe that causes many problems. I don't know. As I reported in this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=4679
I get errors when saving the rack for example. Forte crashes when I do changes in the rack editor. Forte crashes when trimming the rack.

Anyway: I want to set up a new system with Win7 64bit, because I read, that the developers are working on that system too. Maybe it will work stable than....

Regarding Cantabile: I've read and I friend of mine confirmed, that Cantabile is at least as stable as Forte, maybe even more. I want to give it a try too... after that I have everything tested, what is on the market ;)

mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Sun Nov 17, 2013 1:04 pm

Yep I also suppose Win 7 might be less error prone than Win 8.

To support the amount of memory the system I ordered offers, for sample-RAM, I will need to use the 64 Bit versions of Win7, Forte, and Kontact.

I do hope that Brainworks will provide appropriate support, when their software should crash on a proven system.

-Michael

MikeG
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Joined: Tue Nov 19, 2002 11:56 am
Location: Houston, TX, USA
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Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby MikeG » Sun Nov 17, 2013 9:01 pm

Hello,

I saw this thread and look into Chris' crash reports. Most of them are related to Kontakt 5? Opening the GUI? Do I have that correct? That is a new thing that's happened with the latest update to Kontakt and we are still reacting to it. See the post at the top of the forum about this.

Mike
----------------
Mike (brainspawn)
www.brainspawn.com/support

PLEASE NOTE that the forum is not monitored as frequently as the support site above. This forum is intended primarily as a way for users to ask other users questions about the use of Forte.

mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Mon Nov 18, 2013 3:40 pm

In fact I would be astonished if Forte indeed has severe stability problems. I would be even more astonished if Brainspawn would ignore such problems. :D

So looking forward to installing Forte 3 on decent hardware.

-Michael

mschnell
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Midi control automation / key transpose

Postby mschnell » Mon Nov 25, 2013 12:54 pm

Any comments on how to do my own Midi-Filter VSTs ?

Abstract:

- Using a Delphi based VST SDK, I already have been able to do a midi filter VST using the Delphi Programming language, but Delphi and the SDK only can create 32 Bit DLLs.

- I also can do C software and am positive that there is a C based SDK to do 64 bit VSTs. While it's more effort to do the GUI of the SDK in C than it would be in Delphi, I suppose I can learn this.

How to proceed ?

Thanks,
-Michael


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