I bought into VSL a few months back, now using App Strings 1 and various download wind instruments. Currently working on would-be John Willams Hollywood-style orchestration for a production library project. (Yeah, I know). The VSL sounds are great but I spend a disproportionate amount of time tweaking VSL matrices, and then even longer tweaking the Cubase expression maps to choose the right cell for each note. A few basic questions emerge:
- Is there any difference, processing-wise, between having several matrices key switched within one preset as against one very large matrix? I get the feeling Cubase stumbles when making fast switches between matrices (requiring 2-3 keyswitch commands in sequence, one to choose the matrix and one or two to specify the cell), but not when switching between cells. This is a problem where eg a legato phrase has frequent staccato or detache notes in it.
- Has anyone come up with a consistent method of producing custom presets so that, as far as possible, the same keyswitches and controllers call up the same musical effect regardless of instrument? Obviously some articulations are specific to intrument families but things like staccato, portato, sfz, fp etc are universal for sustained instruments, as is the need for a single controller that mimics blowing/scraping harder as you advance it
- Or should one just accept the need to make a new set of custom matrices for every arrangement?
- Is there a utility which derives Cubase expressionmap data from VSL matrix files automatically? Having done it by hand a few times I can assure you it is an entirely brain-dead algorithmic process, the sort of thing a computer should do rather easily.