Vienna Symphonic Library Forum
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  • I Just Don't Get It

    I am completely missing some basic concept and am unable to use VSL in my sequences. I have Vienna Special Edition and Vienna Special Edition Plus running in Sonar X1 as a VST. I can add VSL, put MIDI notes in the track, and hear the sounds. The problem is that I cannot control the articulations. I have watched videos and thought I got the concept, but I cannot make it work. Specific example: - Open Vienna in Sonar, went to Preset Select, and selected SE03 Preset Orchestral Strings. - I clicked through the various views in VSL and saw that there are various articulations: staccato, legato, portamento, tremelo, etc. - I tried putting key switches in the track and this did not control the articulation as expected. I also tried using Controller 1. (Note: I understand that Sonar my use different key values than listed in VSL, so I tried several variations; that is, if Vienna said G#7 was a key switch, I tired G#5, G#6, G#7, G#8, and G#9.) -What am I missing? I really need this to work, but I cannot understand the concept. I just need simple directions about how to select a sound and insert controllers or key switches to get the articulations I need. Thanks.

  • Sonar might use a different octave that VSL. Go in to the sonar preferences and set the Default octave setting up or down 1 octave and see if that works.

    C4 in VSL might be C3 or C5 in Sonar.


  • Thanks for the help, but as mentioned above, I have tried various octaves. What I am missing is that there are horizontal and vertical directions in the matrix, and I cannot tell from the Vienna layout how to move around the cells. How do I know when to use a controller, when to use a keyswitch, which controller, what controller values, etc.? Somewhere there must a basic set of instructions. The manual is not helpful as it does not explain the terms and concepts. Let me try saying this another way: why can't / doesn't the Vienna interface simply say: Top Row = Controller 1, 0 -64; Bottom Row = Controller 1, 65-127. Move horizontally with Key Switches--or whatever. I am trying to guess controller numbers and values and it is quite frustrating. This may be explained somewhere in the interface, but I don't see it. For the record, I use plugins (virtual instruments) from EastWest, Musiclab, Synthogy, Vir2, Cakewalk, and Roland, so I am not incapable of understanding a VI interface. I just can't get the concept with Vienna.

  • Have you tried watching the tutorials?

    Especially if you create your own custom matrix, you can set the keyswitches wherever you wish.  Did you actually set the keyswitches in the VI window?  It is sometimes easy to create a matrix, but forget to set the keyswitches in the other display.  If you don't set the switches in the other pane, VI won't actually be able to read the matrix. 

    Another thing to check: have you set the your midi channels correctly?  It just might be that the keyswitches are set up ok, but being sent on a wrong midi channel, or possibly even no midi channel at all.  The midi channel you have set for a track in Sonar - say a track for Violin I - must match the midi channel for Violin I in the VI. 

  • Thanks for replying. I am able to set up a matrix like the one in the first video and make it work, but not able to do anything useful with the presets. Since I can create a simple matrix, I will just go with that until I figure out how the presets are set-up. I just hate to miss out on all the good stuff that was already preset. I am sure I will understand it over time. Good news: Vienna absolutely has the most incredible sounds I have ever heard in a VI or sampler, and the articulation options are phenomenal. I have no regrets at all about spending the money. Bad news: Vienna is confusing from start to finish. It took me weeks to figure out which packages to buy to get what I need without duplication, and, to make it worse, not every retailer bundles them the same way. I went with Special Edition and Special Edition Plus but am still not sure if that was the best option. (Sweetwater was also confused and they usually know everything.). So, it is worth it, but I think Vienna needs some help from a really clear technical writer who also understands marketing to make their products accessible to more producers and writers. :-) I appreciate all the kind help on this forum. This is a very nice and responsive group. I hope to return the favor as I learn more.

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    @bhartmann said:

    Let me try saying this another way: why can't / doesn't the Vienna interface simply say: Top Row = Controller 1, 0 -64; Bottom Row = Controller 1, 65-127. Move horizontally with Key Switches--or whatever. I am trying to guess controller numbers and values and it is quite frustrating.

    If you click on the CONTROL EDIT box, it shows you the horizontal control (H-Span) and under that the vertical control (V-Span). It shows what is controlling the matrix, either Key Switch, Ptich Wheel, Controller, speed or velocity. When you select "controller", you can then select which controller number to use (CC0 - CC127). So you should be able to see how the presets are set up.

    Once you get this concept, the A/B select should be obvious too.  If you hover your mouse over the H-Span or V-Span box, all the switch points are shown.  You will find it even easier if you upgrade to VI Pro, though the concept is the same, it really is the way to go.

  • A couple other comments:

    Yes, the packages can be confusing... however going with SE and SE Plus is a very good combination.  The Plus package adds some very valuable instruments (woodwind sections and chamber strings for starters).  If you can afford it, I would suggest saving up and adding the extended libraries as well: SE Extended, and SE Plus Extended.  The additional articulations can be very helpful in adding realism to a score.  The only danger is once one starts adding... :-)  

    Many start with the SE libraries, and then eventually add some of the full library collections.

  • OK, andyjh's suggestion should have helped you with switching articulations.

    Let us know.