Re: Soft synths

D F Tweedie

@Hayward ... For what it's worth VSTi's (softsynths or virtual instruments) are agnostic on the Windows platforms. That is, it doesn't matter other than CPU power and available RAM what year/ edition of software you are using to host a softsynth. So any VSTi (Steinbergs 'Virtual Studio Technology instrument) softsynth will run on any program, PG Music or otherwise, that supports VST hosting. Today they virtually all do.

@David ... Steinberg's entry level and up versions of Cubase throw in Halion SE (Halion Special Edition), which includes a feature to automatically open in GM mode with full soundset. That is, if you import a MIDI file and instantiate Halion SE, it will load with the correct instruments per channel.

There is also an advanced, full version of Halion that sells separately. It has some additional functions and a very large collection of sounds beyond GM which are categorized in such a way as to very easily be auditioned in the case you might want something close to but more distinctive than the stock GM voice.

On Tuesday, February 2, 2021, 8:08:18 AM PST, Hayward Martin <haywardmartin@...> wrote:

I have been scanning the PGMUSIC BIAB forums an read about the Cakewalk TTS-1 synthesizer that comes with BIAB and integrates with it.   It’s not obvious (at least not to me).  This is BIAB 2021, don’t know that it’s applicable to earlier versions.  


I have placed a OneDrive link below, just incase my screenshots don’t show up below, in this email…!Asf_MVrLFgfY0PEyFxMv14hu27YUIg?e=NblnSa


Below (hopefully) there’s a screenshot of MIDI Driver Tab in the Options/Preferences pull down menu.   This is  how I have my settings setup…




Now, when I go to the Mixer, Under the the PLUG-Ins Tab you can see “Default-Synth” as the first plug-in listed for each MIDI track.   If you RIGHT-CLICK on “Default-Synth”, the TTS-1 Mixer will show up.  For me, this sound incredibly better that what I’ve been dealing with previously.  



Hope this helps someone!




From: David H. Bailey
Sent: Tuesday, February 2, 2021 10:23 AM
Subject: Re: [Band-In-A-Box] Soft synths


Ian gave one reason (cost) but another reason (get the pun?) is that
they're not all "plug and play" GM ready.  At least that has been my
experience.  All the ones you mention are very powerful and have great
sounds but for instance trying to use a muted trumpet in a GM-based
soft-synth just means changing to a different patch.  Trying to get a
muted sound for Garritan requires activating a keyswitch.

Unless they all come with a GM mode that I'm not aware of, which may
well be because I haven't spent a lot of time investigating them.  I do
use Garritan Personal Orchestra because it can work with Finale, but
even that takes special handling to get all the desired sounds.

I've never worked with Arturia and the limited experience I've had with
IK-Multimedia has been less than wonderful.

But I'm very happy to be corrected about how easy it is to use any of
those with BIAB.


On 2/2/2021 6:51 AM, Jim Mings wrote:
> I am curious. Why has no one mentioned native instruments, IK ,Arturia, or Garritan for example. Am I misunderstanding the Termanology for soft synth.  Jim
>> On Feb 2, 2021, at 5:44 AM, David H. Bailey <dhbailey52@...> wrote:
>> Ian -- thanks for making sure your message made it to the group.
>> The original had made it through, showing a time stamp of 4:51pm (my local time when it arrived here in New Hampshire, USA).  I just wanted to reassure that it made it to the group but I can't explain why you didn't get a copy posted back to you.
>> David
>>> On 2/2/2021 5:29 AM, IAN GRAHAM via wrote:
>>> Morning all. I posted last night as a 'reply' to the thread about soft synths and 'hard' synths, and am a bit surprised not to find it in my inbox this morning, so am reposting afresh.
>>> Like David, I’m a long-time Ketron SD2 user. But last summer for probably a couple of months I did look very seriously and widely at soft-synths. If you’d simply like an alternative to Timbres of Heaven, there’s a GM set called GeneralUser GS which you can probably find online as an sf2. There are also a couple of abandonware sets from Edirol - Edirol Orchestral and Edirol Hyper Canvas or Hypersound Canvas. They can be run as standalones, so asvirtually a self-contained sound source. Another possibility to explore is that a lot of producer effort and invention now goes into ‘plugins’, and although the majority are more controller-tweaks, there are some very good sound sources. e.g. one called !Xpand2. These last three I have added to my kit, but in the end I felt that the full sound font thing was just more trouble than it was worth, and I continue to use the SD2 as my main sound box.

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