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  • OK, Next Noob Question: Where Are The 'Universal' Mode For Chamber Strings?

    EDIT: OK, I did a search on the main site and it answers my question--- one needs to have an Extended Lib.

    QUESTION: Do I need to purchase the Extended lib for -both- CS1 and CS2 or, if I just get Extended for CS1, will that include the Universal Mode (applicable of course only to the articulations in CS1?)


    Finally got round to watching some of Paul's videos this am...

    Where is the 'Universal' Performance? Paul mentions it as available for CS basses so I'm hoping it's available for all CS instruments... But I don't see it in my list of Presets. (I have CS1 and CS 2 but -not- the extended libs.)

    What am I missing?


  • Each one has their own Universal mode.  So if you buy standard and extended Chamber Strings 1, you get universal.  If you later buy standard and extended chamber Strings 2, you will now see a "muted" version of the universal.  I just checked my setup as I own both of them and they are two seperate universal modes.


  • Thanks. From the video, Universal Mode is almost a 'must-have'... this may be perverse psychology, but it kinda ticks me off.

    I was kinda/sorta OK with the PITA factor of VSL libs (not the mention the $) ---because the sound quality and expressiveness really -are- head and shoulders above the competition I've looked at. So long as I didn't know about Universal Mode, I was OK. It annoyed me that the base libs weren't as'playable' as eg. Garritan Strad but I got over it. But now that I -know- about Universal Mode... and that you have to have Extended in order to get it... I feel somewhat gypped.

    In short: you shouldn't have to buy the Extended Lib to get Universal Mode. More articulations? Sure... charge what you like. But the more I dig into CS, the more I realise, how hard it is to do effective real-time performances without a -serious- amount of juggling---or something like Universal Mode. And paying another $600 to get -that- is pretty annoying (I don't really need the articulations in Extended.) If it was something no one else had? I'd understand more, but a lot of competitors have something similar---and it don't take $600 to get it.

    I wish they'd just sell Universal Mode a la carte for like $100. That would be worth it to me.

    OK, I'm done.


  •  Why don;'t you just set up your own Preset version of Universal mode? FWIW I don't use any of the VSL Presets and have a while slew of my own. Maybe this is the way forward for you as well.


  • Great... any thoughts on how to begin?

    For example, from the video... it looks/sounds like the patch is changing all by itself from X-Fade to non-X-Fade and legato to non-legato depending on -some- factor I can't figure out.

    How does one 'program' the matrix to switch cells based on the 'speed'  (I mean the tempo of notes) and then factor in the attack (velocity)? Or turn X-Fade on/off based on tempo?

    In my ideal world I guess I'd program it to work like Garritan Strad---with which I am familiar. So that the mod wheel would control attack/length and the exp. pedal, the X-Fade level on long notes (and CC11 on short notes).

    Any suggestions on programming matrices? Or tutorials out there? (I may not even be using the correct terminology.)




  • Hi JC, 

    I made a big exception and just sent you a second set of demo licenses for the Extended Library, so that you can check out the secrets of the Universal Mode (ItĀ“s basically just making use of the legato speed variations, using the "SPEED" controller, no voodoo there). 

    Hope you enjoy it. 



    Paul Kopf Product Manager VSL
  • Be sure you watch all the video, including the old ones.  There is a video out there that specifically showed how to do speed controls.  It's actually very simple once you understand it, but at first this is very overwhelming.  Watch all the videos.  Download them, and watch them again.  I find that I will grasp one major idea, and maybe 2-3 minor ones from watching the video.  Then one day I watch it again after getting what I want, and find all kinds of new things that I let pass me by because my focus was only on one thing.

    This software will give you unreal results, but it's really a test of patience at times lol.  Good luck!


  • I was =wondering= where that came from... THANKS!

    Actually, I don't even thing I -tried- the Extended Libs the first time.

    But... again... vielen dank

    I appreciate it and will study hard.

    But if it really is no big deal, I suggest again that Universal Mode be included in the hoi polloi versions (ie. non-extended).

    I have written a number of times about how much more 'playable' is Tenor Sax. And I just realised 2 hrs ago -why-... Because it DEFAULTS to Universal Mode. D'Oh! :D

    (In my defense, I'm partially disabled and visually impaired so all the -details- are hard for me to take in... it's why I wish you guys published TRANSCRIPTS of the videos... it's often easier for me to -read- the text than try to sit through the tiny videos---even with your mellifluous voice. ;)  Surely you guys kept the scripts you used to make them, right?)



  • Hi JC, 

    The Universal Mode only makes sense with the sample content of the Extended Library (all the speed-variations of the legatos). 

    I agree that these are great, and the reason for this is that the patches that are used have been the hardest ones to record and edit - also, similar patches are not available in any other library.

    My personal feavourite, although RAM hungry: Use "legato"-"fast legato"-"Performance Trills" in a Speed controlled matrix for absolute freedom concerning authenticity in note transitions for any featured instrument.

    I have just mailed the scripts of the videos for Vienna Instruments and Vienna Instruments PRO.... I may have changed or added a few lines here and there, but I hope they will be helpful. 

    If you have any specific requests like this, it will also help to contact us directly at



    Paul Kopf Product Manager VSL
  • I thanked you via e-mail, but I wanted to also thank you 'publicly'. I sometimes think VSL is an acronym for 'we all drive the CL series here in Wien' but that's because I'm so broke.... and envious. I -completely- appreciate your help. It is -much- easier for me to -read- the scripts (magnified).

    I've been playing with the Extended Libs today and you're -mostly- of right... the added articulations in the L2 patches are really what make it work. And now that I've sampled the marcatos I may not be able to live without. If I donate plasma a few times... and stick to a diet of Ramen and Flintstone's Vitamins, I may be able to afford CS1 Extended.

    But... as is my norm, two final observations...

    1. I still think a 'Basic Universal Mode' could be included in CS1... I've been under the assumption that the standard presets were what I should try to -make- work. I guess you thought they best demonstrate the different articulations, but they are -not- the most performance friendly. OK, now I know what to do. But I know others who have struggled with this sort of thing and all you need to do is a few more presets to ease the learning curve.

    2. I went through -heck- trying to figure out which bits to purchase on my limited budget. If I knew then what I know now I would've gotten CS1 and CS1 Extended instead of CS1/CS2. I don't regret getting CS2, but again urge y'all to make the product lines a bit clearer. I'f go so far as to give dealers (who are -really- ignorant about VSL) some guidance for potential customers like "Recommend they start with CS1, then get CS1 Extended, -then- get CS2."



  • Hi JC, 

    Thanks for your feedback, it is appreciated. 

    I donĀ“t want to start a discussion here (really!!), so IĀ“ll just offer my input on your final observations: 

    1) The structure for all Vienna Instruments is the same. And it has to be, because this way you only need to "learn" the Vienna Instruments as a virtual instrument - the STRUCTURE of the instruments is always the same. I know that the learning curve is pretty steep, and thereĀ“s MUCH more available in Vienna Instruments PRO. 

    The STANDARD Library contains STANDARD articulations.... if you are looking for specialized/advanced samples, youĀ“ll find them in the EXTENDED Libraries.  There are detailed lists of all included articulations available on each product page (in the menu below the product shot => Sample Content), that show which articulations are in which Library. 

    Regarding presets, please believe me: EVERYBODY is working in a different way. I havenĀ“t seen 2 identical presets of any user in the 6 years that Vienna Instruments have been available. And thatĀ“s a good thing, because thatĀ“s what allows you to create your own sound/playbility. The matrices are designed to give you an overview of whatĀ“s available. The Universal Mode is just one example of how to make use of the Speed Control (with, admittedly, a catchy name). 

    2) Chamber Strings 2 contain muted strings. What can I say.

    The good part about your Chamber Strings Bundle purchase: You saved 155 US$ right away AND you received a free Tenor Saxophone!

    Our dealers are working with many musicians. Very few people decide to start with the Chamber Strings in the first place. If you do some research on our webpage, I hope that you can find all the information you need. If you have questions - please contact our support team or ask in the forum. 

    We have been in rather intense email contact since March 2011, when you received your first (out of 4!!!) demo license of VE PRO, and we have worked through quite a few issues together. So you basically know who to turn to if you need any information [:)]



    Paul Kopf Product Manager VSL