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Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

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Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

Postby HLM001 » Mon Jan 06, 2014 2:53 pm

Although I've been doing instrumental music via a sequencer for many years I've only recently come across the sort of articulation detail that Garritan offers. Maybe I haven't been looking hard enough, but for orchestral and instrumental mock ups for film TV and other types of work it seems the choice of sequencer is vital. I'm using Logic 9 at the moment and it's mcc# draw window, part of the Piano Roll called Hyper Draw is good, but it only shows one CC parameter at a time per instrument, even then you have to make sure you've selected the region or clip etc. There's a lot of detail that can be achieved now, yes it takes time, but hence my comment about choice of sequencer with the best workflow for this kind of thing.

I'll look forwards to trying out Digital Performer and Pro Tools properly. Used to have Sonar. I did like it - simple, easy to understand. Now the kit that can score out the midi as its heard, with all the assigned cc#'s and save me exporting midi files over and hacking away in a scoring program will get my bucks anyday!
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Re: Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

Postby Ernest Buckley » Tue Jan 07, 2014 4:43 pm

Hello HLM001,

I`m a newbie with GPO but I`ll be using it with Digital Performer (DP) which has been my DAW of choice for the last 13 years. In my experience, it has pretty much everything one could need or want. DP has always been considered the standard for film composers so you may want to consider that. Considering doing some research and see which feature set resonates most with you in a DAW.

Peace,
EB
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Re: Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

Postby rbowser » Tue Jan 07, 2014 9:07 pm

HLM001 wrote:Although I've been doing instrumental music via a sequencer for many years I've only recently come across the sort of articulation detail that Garritan offers. Maybe I haven't been looking hard enough, but for orchestral and instrumental mock ups for film TV and other types of work it seems the choice of sequencer is vital. I'm using Logic 9 at the moment and it's mcc# draw window, part of the Piano Roll called Hyper Draw is good, but it only shows one CC parameter at a time per instrument, even then you have to make sure you've selected the region or clip etc. There's a lot of detail that can be achieved now, yes it takes time, but hence my comment about choice of sequencer with the best workflow for this kind of thing.

I'll look forwards to trying out Digital Performer and Pro Tools properly. Used to have Sonar. I did like it - simple, easy to understand. Now the kit that can score out the midi as its heard, with all the assigned cc#'s and save me exporting midi files over and hacking away in a scoring program will get my bucks anyday!


It's a perennial question, HLM001 - "which sequencer/DAW program to use?" Not surprisingly, you'll get about as many different suggestions as the number of people you ask. Everyone is going to champion whatever program they use. It's really an unquantifiable thing, "which is best?" - and an impossible question to answer.

All DAW software programs do the same thing. They'll look different, they'll name their tools differently, but it comes down to all of them doing the same thing. You just have to get to know a program, and dive into it. You're not going to be seriously missing out on what other programs they have - beyond MIDI editing tools, which they all have, and a decent way to mix projects - the rest is just icing on the cake.

That being said - I'll prove myself to be an example of my rule. I've used Cakewalk for years, and though the company lost me with their huge paradigm shift starting with their X series - I champion the version of their software that I still use, which is Sonar 8.5. I feel they've dumbed the program down and made it clunkier to use in the newer incarnations, but it's not as if I'd go so far as to discourage somebody from trying/using it. It's still Sonar with excellent tools, excellent sound et al.

You said that you used Sonar at some point - Maybe you've forgotten, but it doesn't have the limitation in the PRV that you're describing about Logic's PRV. Logic only shows one CC lane/pane at a time?? You have to be careful about selecting a particular region?? -- That really seems like madness to me. In Sonar, you can have as many CC lanes displayed as you can squeeze on to your screen. And once you've selected a track to work on, the entire thing displays as one continuous flow of data, no matter how many small clips that track is comprised of. I would have to say that's a major design flaw in Logic, if that is indeed the only possible way data can be displayed.

My mantra is that the PRV/MIDI Editor of a program is The Heart of MIDI. Any program can record your MIDI tracks. What you want is to be able to dig in and use all available MIDI tools, and use them in a logical way that doesn't thwart your work flow. Sonar has that - at least it used to!

You mentioned Pro Tools - This is a typical thing for a non-user to say, but I'm extremely under-whelmed with what I see about Pro Tools online. The company is VERY fortunate that through a huge publicity blitz way back, and the clever use of "Professional" in their program's name, they managed to become The Industry Standard. It's true that every studio in the country has Pro Tools. It's all that's used in the major cities - everywhere. If you don't have and use Pro Tools - you are out of it. And yet PT has consistently been behind, sometimes Years behind in catching up to features established by Sonar. There's absolutely Nothing "better" about PT. If you want to be a pro engineer, you have to learn it - otherwise, there's no reason to consider it more seriously than any other DAW program.

Digital Performer is now for Windows too. Its users have an almost religious fervor for it. From everything I've seen, it seems like a perfectly fine program. For myself, I'm already an established Sonar user, I have no complaints about the version I use - I have Zero motivation to seek out a new program, because I know it's difficult to learn any new program, and I know that if I learned DP - I'm rather sure I wouldn't end up any better off than I already am with Sonar.

SO - What "sequencer" - DAW software to use? It doesn't matter. I really think it doesn't--um--but let's not get down to considering consumer products like Garage Band, - and I have to say, again, that the more I hear about Logic, the less impressed I am. It comes across as being the antithesis of it's name!

Randy
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Garritan Organs demos of all 75 stops

"Dorian Gray"

Hardware:

Roland A-800 MIDI keyboard controller
Alesis i|O2 interface
Gigabyte Technology-AMD Phenom II @ 3 GHz
8 Gb RAM 6 Core Windows 7 Home Premium x64
with dual monitors
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Garritan World
Garritan Classic Pipe Organs
Garritan Harps
Garritan Authorized Steinway
Garritan Stradivari solo violin
Garritan Gofriller solo cello

Sundry soft synths:
Dimension Pro, EZDrummer, over 50 others

Sonar 8.5 (have but don't use Sonar X1)
Sony Sound Forge 10
Sibelius 7

Video editing: Cyberlink Power Director 11

Re: Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

Postby buhardilla » Sat Jan 11, 2014 10:43 am

Ernest Buckley wrote: and I have to say, again, that the more I hear about Logic, the less impressed I am. It comes across as being the antithesis of it's name!

:lol: I agree
I own Logic, Cubase and Digital Performer and I also agree that all do the same. But what it's different to them is the relationship between composer-computer-DAW. Q: What's the combo that do the work fine to me??? A: use them and try to learn them in deep. In this way you will able to know what workflow is better for you and your needs. I'm Cubase user since 1999 but recently I moved to DP because I like more the DP workflow ( I think that Cubase has more innovative MIDI tools !). Is a personal choice.
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Re: Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

Postby rbowser » Sat Jan 11, 2014 11:57 am

Ernest Buckley wrote: and I have to say, again, that the more I hear about Logic, the less impressed I am. It comes across as being the antithesis of it's name!


OOPS! -- He didn't say that. Poor Ernie got stuck being credited for My snippy comment about Logic. Just an editing error in your post "buhardilla," but I don't want Ernest to be blamed for something I said!

So many musicians/composers really only need some pretty basic tools, the ones every program has. That's why the "light" versions of programs can be all a lot of people need, especially more "serious" composers who have much less interest in getting overly immersed in DAW software production methods.

The full versions of DAW programs tend to have things that only pop, rock, and electronic composers would be interested i.e. "Vintage Whiz Bang Decimator!" "Mammoth Drums from Outer Space!" and "The Ultimate Mashup Sound Twister!"--you get the idea - software instruments and plugins, often sold separately for high prices, which just make the full program much more expensive without adding anything of interest to the more serious composer.

I repeat, you just get yourself a DAW program, learn it, use it - and there you are! Can't decide on a company? Put names on a dart board and throw a dart - where it lands - that's the winner! :P

Randy
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Last edited by rbowser on Sat Jan 25, 2014 11:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
Garritan Organs demos of all 75 stops

"Dorian Gray"

Hardware:

Roland A-800 MIDI keyboard controller
Alesis i|O2 interface
Gigabyte Technology-AMD Phenom II @ 3 GHz
8 Gb RAM 6 Core Windows 7 Home Premium x64
with dual monitors
User avatar
rbowser
 
Posts: 494
Joined: December, 2013
Reputation: 50
Software Owned:
ARIA Player v1.626
ARIA Engine 1.665
GPO4
JABB 3
COMB 2
Instant Orchestra
Garritan World
Garritan Classic Pipe Organs
Garritan Harps
Garritan Authorized Steinway
Garritan Stradivari solo violin
Garritan Gofriller solo cello

Sundry soft synths:
Dimension Pro, EZDrummer, over 50 others

Sonar 8.5 (have but don't use Sonar X1)
Sony Sound Forge 10
Sibelius 7

Video editing: Cyberlink Power Director 11

Re: Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

Postby Michael.B » Sat Jan 25, 2014 11:16 am

Hello HLM001,

I'm another Sonar user, presently on X3.

The one thing that swayed me many years ago towards Sonar is that it doesn't use a dongle for copy protection. I also like its user friendliness compared to some other DAWS.

However, as always, the best advice is to try the demo versions. I'm sure one will stand out for you and the way you work.
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Re: Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

Postby Ernest Buckley » Mon Apr 07, 2014 11:23 am

rbowser wrote:
Ernest Buckley wrote: and I have to say, again, that the more I hear about Logic, the less impressed I am. It comes across as being the antithesis of it's name!


OOPS! -- He didn't say that. Poor Ernie got stuck being credited for My snippy comment about Logic. Just an editing error in your post "buhardilla," but I don't want Ernest to be blamed for something I said!

Randy


Thanks for clarifying that Randy! I was just reading this thread and had to go back twice because I didn`t recall ever saying that. Thought I was losing my mind…

I`ve been away for a few months, too busy with school and work. I still have tons of questions with Finale and GPO but thats for another thread.
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Re: Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

Postby SysExJohn » Tue Apr 08, 2014 8:23 am

Hi HLM001,

HLM001 wrote:Now the kit that can score out the midi as its heard, with all the assigned cc#'s and save me exporting midi files over and hacking away in a scoring program will get my bucks any day!

Personally, I don't think such a program exists ... yet.

One either gets all the notation details or the very tight MIDI control.
Although, as a new user to Finale, it does seem to go a long way towards the ideal.
I'm finding that starting with the notation and adding articulations and expression there then exporting to MIDI and finishing off in Sonar seems so far the best compromise.
But Finale is a pretty steep learning curve ... at least it is to me.

Like Randy, I haven't been persuaded to move on to the 'X' series Sonar, I'm still with 7 PE.
I started with XGworks (sadly not updated beyond version 3 for the western market) now long out of date, which kept me happy until fairly recently, but was unable to display/manipulate many of the CCs used by Garritan in the controller pane(s). One could, at least, display up to three, individually sizeable panes, in either staff or PRV, which was handy.

I think, as much as anything, it's a personal matter of whether you like the user interface or not, and going for something that at least doesn't get in the way of the creation process.

To Ernest: I too am struggling to learn Finale. I recently forked out some money for the Finale Trailblazer Guide book. I find it very handy. Michael's tutorials here answered a lot of my questions too.

Regards,
John.
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Author of http://midi-tutor.proboards.com/ MIDI tutorials.
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Re: Best Sequencer for this kind of work?

Postby RobertDavis » Tue May 13, 2014 12:29 pm

No such animal exists as the best "DAW" for "x" projects. I have used a number of them and frankly they are all pretty much the same in features, they just call these features different things.

Having tried quite a few from Pro Tools, Acid Pro, to Studio One, my preference is Sonar. I just like the layout. But this never stops me from trying other things and realizing the functions are pretty much the same.

I think this is completely subjective just like a "what sample library is the best for sound style X"....
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