About EDIT2: yes , this is a "big one" - or maybe not. What the channel meters CAN'T show is the data after combining all channels and feeding the result into the main VST effect bus. As you may realize, the channel information is lost then. There is an option I have in mind for some trickery though - scale the channel data according to the change imposed by the main VST effects bus. Anyway, the VU meters ought to correctly show whatever may have happened to the sound after processing by the effects channel buses.
No, that wasn't the intention! I might actually add the "all-channels" VU as an option.
Here's the next iteration:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/173 … nt2-10.rar
- The smallchange/largechange settings for the various mixers trackbars has been corrected (#Elven)
- The VU Meters are now dynamically created on load of midi/arrangement file to show only the channels in use. Hence, you may see everything between 0 and 32 VUs.
- The Equalizer settings are now stored in the arrangement as well
Thanks Elven. I knew I could rely on you.
- Keep in mind that the Bus feature is already now a channel feature. Even if you assign it to a track in the tracks list it actually is assigned to all tracks for that channel. Think about it.
- I guess I need to make unused channels having the name "unused" or "not used" or "not assigned". But yes, all 16 channels are displayed.
- There will eventually be all 32. I was just a little bit lazy. You will have them all and a scrollbar at the bottom to scroll though them.
- Would it be best to clear them after stopping? I don't know. Maybe you want to see how loudly a channel played?
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/173 … nt2-09.rar
- I've added a new feature for your comments: there is a new tab page called "VU Meters", next to "Other options". This page show 16 old-fashioned LED-type VU meters for the 16 midi channels. Underneath each there is a button called "Bus" but this is not yet connected to anything. The plan is to give you the option to set the VST Bus here. Currently you set it using the Bus button menu in the tracks list, but I think it would be better here as the VST bus is a channel feature and not a track feature. I might also add an additional volume control here, one for setting the midi channel volume (as opposed to the track volume in the tacks mixer). I want comments, please!
- Elven, I've tried to make it so that the VST effects editor windows will never go off-screen.
- Elven, I think - hope - that this version does not unnecessarily ask you to save the arrangement
- Also fixed a number of other minor issues and flaws
There's ONE thing you can do: you can change the Bank number for the presets. For example, there are 6 presets for the slot "000:080". I changed them to "000:080", "001:080", "002:080", "003:080", "004:080" and "005:080". THEN you can of course delete the extra ones if you want to.
People don't LIKE warnings! And they don't understand them. I have a warning when you select a non-GM SoundFont to be the default SoundFont and people are annoyed about it and yet they don't understand why some instruments don't play! If people would be just as clever as you and me...
You can choose the default arrangement if you want to to use a certain VST instrument with certain parameters for a number of midi files. OR, if you want to play to a certain MIDI output port. ANY arrangement can be used as a default arrangement. Keep in mind that this feature was specially introduced for a special need, so it may still evolve.
Forgot to mention that the VOL button introduced in 05A now behaves differently. It pops up a dialogue box where you can defined the position of the event. The position can be set by selecting the current MIDI program change (use the small arrow button in the tracks list to pop up a menu with program changes in a track) OR, by setting the cursor in the Pianoroll (click anywhere). There is a small black triangle pointing down in the Playback Progress (Plug & Play, Synth rack) indicating the position. Note that you CANNOT drag this to a new position but must use either of the two methods above.
Here's why I'm hesitant to offer a default Midi Out Port to override the default SoundFont:
There is no guarantee that the synth at the port is GM compliant - meaning that it is capable of playing all 128 melodic MIDI programs + at least one percussion preset, for all 16 midi channels (omni mode).
This is the same reason for me not offering a VST instrument as a cover for a GM SoundFont.
By doing this I avoid a lot of annoyed people contacting me and angrily complaining that there is no sound - or the wrong sound - coming out of the system (the external synth or the VSTi).
For VST instruments there is one more complication: you may tune the instrument in various ways and save the settings in an Arrangement file. If you would use the VSTi as a default instead of a GM SoundFont, there is no guarantee that the VSTi would load the tweaked settings and play like in the Arrangement - if at all.
For MIDI ports, there is another complication: there is a latency when playing to a MIDI port. It used to be big - 300 ms - but I have been able to decrease it now to a few milliseconds only. Still, I do not recommend using both MIDI Ports and SoundFonts (or VSTis) in the same arrangement.
As I had already developed the concept of a Default Arrangement for a guy needing to a) use a VST instruments and b) be able to tweak the parameters in a consistent way, I decided to offer the same structure for the MIDI port.
But, for testing, and to make RsH happy, I have introduced an option in this version:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/173 … nt2-08.rar
Go to Setup and you will find a new checkbox beneath the list of MIDI out ports. Check this to use the port in all cases where there's no Arrangement defined (not even the Default Arrangement, which still takes precedence). The port will then be used for all tracks.
In this version I have developed the concept of the Default Arrangement further. The menu item "Select default Arrangement..." in "File" shows a dialogue box with a number of options. Have a look!
Elven, you will find the new menu item you asked for in the popup menu ("Default SoundFont (no Overrides)").
Elven, please hurry with the details re the "arrangement has changed" issue. I still do not know how to reproduce it.
You mean like "Default without Overrides"?
I'm back home again! Home sweet home...
So here's the next version:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/173 … nt2-07.rar
- RsH has been asking for a way to use MIDI out as a default when playing a bunch of MIDI files. I have been holding this back a little bit because I have had to consider various options. I have another user who wants to use a VST instrument as the default. Now, I did not want to replace the concept of the default SoundFont with a default MIDI port or a default VST instrument, for various reasons. For the other user I came up with the solution of offering a default arrangement. So he simply creates an arrangement with a number of tracks and sets them all to use the VST instrument (well, actually not necessary all of them). It seems to work for him. So, here is now a version that makes it easy to use a default arrangement. You need to do this: create an arrangement for a typical midi file. Set the output to what you want (and add VST effects as you like). Save the arrangement using a suitable file name, like "Def arr 3 tracks" or something. Next, go to the "File" menu and look for a new item that says "Set the current Arrangement as the default". Click it now and go back to "File" again. Below the previous item you have an another new item which you need to check in order to actually use this arrangement as the default. Now, every time you open a MIDI file for which there doesn't exist an arrangement file, the default arr file will be used. Give it a try! It is definitely a very crude implementation at the moment so I will not be surprised if you find flaws in it.
- The volume trackbar had very small "SmallChange" and "LargeChange" property values, making it look like nothing ever changed.
Elven: I CANNOT reproduce two of your issues:
1) You say 'The message box with "The Arrangement for this Midi file has changed. ..." appears every time you change file regardless of whether you have changed anything or not, or if there is even an arrangement for the file.' I need more help. I am obviously not testing it the right way. Give me a hand!
2) 'It also seems that a lot of these versions won't allow me to open the small dialogues for VST effects.' Can't make that happen either. Any ideas, anyone?
Elven, slightly odd... Give this version a try then:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/173 … t2-06A.rar
Take your time, I will be off now.
Here's the next version:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/173 … nt2-06.rar
- The VOL button is disabled while playing, but wasn't enabled afterwards. Fixed.
- Did a small change to the playback bar part - is it any better?
I have decided to stick to 's2arr'. It rhymes on 'sfarr' and makes it easier for someone already used to identify 'sfarr' files as SynthFont arrangement files to figure out that 's2arr' files are arrangements as well.
I will be away for a week so take your time!
Yes, you get used to UI features and this is ONE reason I decided to stick with the SynthFont1 solution. I hope and anticipate that a lot of S1 users will move over to S2, eventually. That's the target, at least.
Forgot to comment earlier on another change in 05: the two buttons in the main toolbar to save and arrangement and to open files have changed. They are now the same as used in SynthFont1, meaning that you need to use the RIGHT mouse button to pop up the menu. There are two reasons for this change: a) the button I used does not work in Windows XP, and b) I was myself so used to using the right mouse button that I wanted it back.
's2a' looks like a good alternative also. I haven't searched myself but I believe when you say that s2a is not used. I chose 'sfarr' originally because both 'sar' and 'sfa' where "taken".
I have made it '.s2arr'.
Elven, there's a new button in the tracks list header called 'VOL'. Press it to add a new midi volume controller message at the current position. Which is the current position? For example, it is where the small green triangle points or at the current marker. You can make it point to anywhere you want in the file by adjusting the Bar:Beat:Ticks value. Experiment!
This version saves the last used file using another key so that SynthFont1 will not be asked to open an 's2arr' file.
I will be away for a week. Last day in office is Sunday, so if you find something really bad then please tell me soon!
I agree that 'sf2arr' may sound like a SoundFont arrangement. Is 'sfarr2' then actually better? Who knows?
I'll make it 's2arr', I think.
Here's a new version:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/173 … nt2-05.rar
The arrangement files are now stored using another file extension: "sf2arr". SynthFont2 still reads SynthFont1 arrangements, of course, but saves them using the new extension. After much thought I realized that this is the best choice for the future.
New feature: in "Files / Folders", under "... files in the Folder List below" there is a checkbox, "Include sub-folders". You can probably guess how it works.
The volume automation feature did not work before.
The pan feature is now completely changed. The drawback with this solution is that it is not a track feature any longer, but a midi channel feature. So if you change the pan for a track, it will change in the same way for all other tracks with the same midi channel.
I haven't done anything about the blinking/flickering playback bar yet, but I have some thoughts about it. This seems to happen when the time thread doesn't get the CPU time it needs and stalls. More tests required.
Elven, I see your point and agree that it could be a feature for the future. I'll make a note of it. It IS easy enough to add a volume control event into the midi stream and when saving the arrangement with midi data you do not destroy the original midi.
Talking about pan ... it is funny that none of you guys have raised the subject of how poorly the MIXER pan function works. It works correctly only when the original pan in the midi file is close to 0 (in the middle). If it is panned hard to the left and you try to pan it to the right with the mixer, then it will only fade out. This is maybe not a "bug" but a design flaw that I aim to correct in SynthFont2. My only concern is that arrangements may not be totally valid any longer, so I need to think about it. I would also do the fix in SynthFont1 eventually.
Elven, you are right in that pan, like all other controllers, is a MIDI channel feature - not a track feature. Thus the above file behaves like it does. The bug I fixed was only that he value was incorrectly displayed WHILE PLAYING. It was correctly applied, though. I agree with you thought that it could be a good idea to also display the actually applied pan value also for the track having no pan value defined, like in your example. This is only a cosmetic issue as it has no impact on anything, except from the fact that some people will wonder why there reads a pan value for a track which doesn't have a pan value defined in the actual MIDI data for that particular track. En even better cosmetic change would be to consolidate two tracks like these - wherein one contains only notes and the other only controllers - bad design originally.
Found two bugs:
1) if you select a SoundFont which does NOT contain the specified Bank:Preset, then the chosen Bank:Preset was not saved in the Arrangement file. This has been so for ages...
2) SynthFont2 (but not 1) DISPLAYED the pan value incorrectly. It was still correctly used in the synth engine.
Also fixed a very recent bug that would prevent you from writing to a file and playing silently for finding the maximum.
Here's the next version:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/173 … nt2-03.rar
There's nothing new, only bug fixes.
EDIT2: It also keeps forgetting what patches I apply to certain tracks.
This is important. Any additional information will help a lot! I'm running out of time - summer is approaching here in Finland and then I will get 1000 other things to do (outside) - so any details yo can come up with, please. Like, send me the midi and the arrangement, to begin with.
RsH - the idea to be able to play all files in a folder tree has been on the agenda for a looong time. And NOW is the time to implement it!
Chasp - at least Excite shows up for me in "02". So I really don't know. I need more info from you, I guess.