Vienna Symphonic Library Forum
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  • The end of raw samples?

    Do the Vienna Instruments signal the end of raw samples (those lovely .wav files that we can do all sorts of out-of-the-ordinary things with)? Will VSL be phasing out gig, exs, nki, and so on? As I understand it, the VIs use a proprietary file format -- is this just like a VI sampler/articulatioin program file, or is it actually a "monolithic" sample file, with both audio and metadata about the mappings?
    I ask mostly because it seems to me there's no destination product for the all the new content other than the Vienna Instruments.
    Come to think of it, do the Vienna Instruments install raw .wav files on the drive still, or is it all in proprietary format?

    J.

  • As I understand it, the samples are not accessible (in any way) to the user and not editable either.

    This is the new trend and I guess it's ok, but it also means the developer has a greater responsibility when it comes to sample quality and concistensy, since the user is unable to do any tweaking or editing to try and correct some of the possible problems.

    In the example of the VI's, there are some problems that have been known for a pretty long time, namely inconsistency between samples within some instruments.

    Listen to the VI demos and you'll hear some examples of this, where for example the timbre changes dramatically from one sample to the next in an unnatural sounding way), and there is of course also the phasing occuring when crossfading within some instruments.

    As the user is cut out of the loop with the VI's and has no chance of doing anything about these problems, we can only hope that VSL does their best to try and correct these problems.

    Hopefully they will, since they are audibly pretty obvious and some of the very few serious downsides remaining in an otherwise extremely brilliant and excellent product.

    R

  • hmmm... It would be good to hear from the VSL-ers themselves... I'd be disappointed if we couldn't access the raw files, as it seems that's at least part of what we're paying for -- though I guess that's debatable when we buy a Vienna "Instrument"...

    I've had several opportunities to use the raw samples in the past, so it would be a shame not to have access to them anymore.

    I suppose I could "fake" a raw sample by capturing output of the instrument, then saving that... kind of lame though. But I do understand that it's simpler for them to integrate a propretary format with their instrument (since they can include info specific to the way their instrument operates). But still, it seems a bit of a shame...

    J.

  • The samples won´t be accessible, but of course you can always use the samples of your existing libraries anytime in whatever context.

    You can also bounce a Single note in Vienna Instruments and use them, of course.

    Paul Kopf Product Manager VSL
  • well, well... then back to the original question, and title of the thread:

    Are raw-sample baesd formats being phased out?
    (read: is the Pro Edition going to become a thing of the past?)

    J.

  • oooh! Thunderous silence...

    I suppose apps like Translator Pro, CDXtract, and so on will probably develop ways of translating -- that's their bread and butter, after all. Also, the built-in importers from Kontakt, Halion, and so on... Hopefully, anyway. Which isn't saying that I'm not going to use the Vienna Instruments (if and when I can afford them), but there are other samplers out there that also have great feature-sets, and it would be a shame for VSL to go all uber-proprietary, like Protools or something...

    J.

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    @jbm said:

    oooh! Thunderous silence...

    I suppose apps like Translator Pro, CDXtract, and so on will probably develop ways of translating -- that's their bread and butter, after all. Also, the built-in importers from Kontakt, Halion, and so on... Hopefully, anyway. Which isn't saying that I'm not going to use the Vienna Instruments (if and when I can afford them), but there are other samplers out there that also have great feature-sets, and it would be a shame for VSL to go all uber-proprietary, like Protools or something...

    J.


    However, some transfers could be considered illegal by terms of the licence agreement (Like ProTools) so in those cases there will be no commercial translator.

    DG

  • hmm... I don't quite get the ProTools part of what you're saying, but do you really think translating the content from a Vienna Instrument would be a violation of the license? That would kind of suck. I've used raw samples for cross-synthesis and other funky techniques, and I'd love to be able to do that with some of the new sounds -- especially the extended stuff they're doing with harmonics, etc.

    J.

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    @jbm said:

    hmm... I don't quite get the ProTools part of what you're saying, but do you really think translating the content from a Vienna Instrument would be a violation of the license? That would kind of suck. I've used raw samples for cross-synthesis and other funky techniques, and I'd love to be able to do that with some of the new sounds -- especially the extended stuff they're doing with harmonics, etc.

    J.


    ProTools have encrypted their files from version 5.1 upwards. If you try to break the encryption you are breaking the licence agreement (which forbids this sort of thing) and therefore any developer that tries to write an application to do this would get sued immediately.

    Regarding VSL, I don't know, but if we are not being given access to the samples any more it wouldn't surprise me. I also assume that constructing our own instruments would not work either with this new set-up. However, long time users still have access to all the raw data from the GS samples that we already have, so it could be that this will be our limit; old stuff but not new. We'll have to wait and see.

    DG

  • Wow! I didn't realize ProTools had done that... they really suck more than I thought! But I guess if you're that worried about actually competing, then you've got to do something.

    My guess is that VSL's instrument samples will be accessible at some point. And Paul already mentioned the idea of bouncing the notes you wanted to use outside the VI, so I don't imagine there's any legal issue... I guess there probably won't be any great reason for the average user to pull individual samples out, but you never know -- I could see people writing specialized scripts for Kontakt 2 or something, and wanting to use them with the newer content.

    To be honest, I'm just a bit bummed that the program I've worked almost 2 years at developing, and which is now working well enough for release (just needs some GUI stuff added) will be limited to only the existing material, and won't be able to access any new samples from this point on. I've put in a huge amount of time and effort, particularly into the extremely difficult problem of making one tool that could adapt to a wide, and somewhat unpredictable range of VSL libraries... the question of generality was a big question. But now there will no longer be any question... it's all locked away (well, maybe not forever).

    I will probably still release my tool, as it will certainly help those of us who can't afford Vienna Instruments (though it will be Mac-only for now, and with the proprietary move on VSL's part, it will probably stay that way). But it's sad to think that it won't be able to access any new content. But I suppose I am sort of like "competition"... sort of...

    (As a bright spot, I have been working on an interface element to allow mixing of non-VSL with VSL libraries, to create hybrids capable of the same level of automated interpretation. That should place a little light at the end of the tunnel!)

    J.