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Garritan Instruments and Mixing Levels

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Re: Garritan Instruments and Mixing Levels

Postby mightierpen » Sat Oct 04, 2014 2:13 am

Hi
I've just found this thread, which seems relevant to the problem I'm having - can anyone help? I'm using Aria with Logic Pro 9 as my DAW. I'm trying (for the first time) to mix an orchestral arrangement using 3 instances of Aria, one with 14 instruments loaded (woodwind/brass), one with 3 (strings), one with 1 (solo harmonica). The problem is that while I can set an overall rough balance easily enough, I run into problems as soon as I try to adjust individual instruments (e.g. to bring out an oboe decorative phrase etc). Normally, this is a job for volume automation - but adjusting one track applies the adjustment to all tracks for that instance of Aria, so that's no good. I've therefore tried using Hyper Draw instead, which does seem to provide a means of controlling individual instruments separately; but applying multiple Hyper Draw instructions to the same passage of music on different tracks (to boost one and dip others) creates a chaos of rapid level changes on the channel gain - which isn't at all what I want.

So I tried giving up on working within MIDI, and bouncing each track to audio instead, so that I could use volume automation in the normal way. Unfortunately, bouncing crashes after about 14 tracks - I get a 'disk too slow' message, because I'm overloading the buffer. I can't see any way of creating/playing back 18 tracks of audio - altering the buffer size in Logic doesn't seem to help.

So I'm stuck. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.....
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Re: Garritan Instruments and Mixing Levels

Postby Michael.B » Sat Oct 04, 2014 8:41 am

Hello Mightierpen,

First a warm welcome to our forums. :D

I don't use Logic Pro so in that sense I can't be of much help however, my thoughts are that I cannot believe Logic Pro is unable to control the individual instruments.

You mention that this is your first time so my approach would be that there has to be some setting somewhere in Logic Pro. Like Randy, I also use Sonar X3 and, as Randy wrote, we do have the options to use either the Aria faders or for Sonar to take control of the faders. I can't believe that a DAW of the status of Logic Pro doesn't offer similar options.

You also write that you are giving up on MIDI and now bounce your tracks to audio. Actually, that in itself is quite a standard work-flow but only after having completed a lot of work in the MIDI realm and this is how I work.

My suggestion would be to persevere with your MIDI score and try to resolve the problem controlling the individual instruments so you can perfect the MIDI aspects before bouncing to audio for final adjustments.

I know there are members here who also use Logic Pro and I hope that someone will chip in and have the solution. Alternatively have you tried asking in the Logic Pro forums?

Regarding the problems you describe of crashing and the messages. This sounds like it could have something to do with system specs. Have you tried freezing some tracks and bounce fewer tracks, freeze those then bounce a few more. This is a 'trick' I have read that some Sonar users do although I have never tried this.

I hope there is something here to help and good luck. :)
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Re: Garritan Instruments and Mixing Levels

Postby mightierpen » Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:45 am

Hi Michael,
Thanks for the quick and helpful response. OK, I'll investigate the DAW end. It may be to do with automation preferences or something - maybe it's possible to 'unlock' the tracks from each other? The root cause, I think, is that launching Aria creates 16 tracks assigned to the same AU plug-in - so Logic treats them as one instrument, with the channel gains grouped. Node data entered on one track affects the others as well. You're right - I wouldn't expect it to be a limitation of Logic - so I was worried it might be a limitation of Aria. Good to know that other users don't have this problem, therefore.

When you say "use the Aria faders" do you mean just riding the faders manually, or do you mean using Aria like a control surface to write automation data to the DAW? At the moment my Aria faders don't seem to do anything beyond sending a mix of attenuated levels to the Aria output, and level changes made in Logic don't cause any movement in the Aria faders, so I didn't think you could do that.

As to freezing tracks, that would be counter-productive in my situation, wouldn't it? As I understand it, freezing tracks lightens the CPU processing load, at the expense of placing heavier loadings of data into the buffer; whereas my problem with bouncing to audio is not CPU - it's that I'm already over-loading the buffer with all the audio tracks (and muting them doesn't seem to help).

Any more light thrown upon this would be very welcome!

thanks
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Re: Garritan Instruments and Mixing Levels

Postby Michael.B » Sat Oct 04, 2014 12:56 pm

Hello again Mightierpen,

It seems like I'll have to cancel out my thoughts that Logic Pro should be able to control the individual Aria sliders. I tried a quick online search and found a few people asking the same thing, some of them in the Logik forums.

From the replies, as I understand them, it seems that this feature isn't available in Logik Pro. :? I also did a test to re-check that this can be done in Sonar to make sure I'm not imagining it. Sure enough it can be indeed be done in Sonar.

So, it does seem that your example is correct. I'm stumped as to what you can do for automation on individual instruments. Here's hoping an experienced Logik user can intervene here.

Regarding your crashing with the bounced audio. The only other suggestion I have, other than updating your computer specs, is to process your recording in smaller separate parts. Save each section as separate audio files then open a new score and bring them all together. This is not ideal I know and, of course, you're missing out on all the MIDI opportunities.

I hope someone comes up with a better solution.
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Re: Garritan Instruments and Mixing Levels

Postby mightierpen » Sun Oct 05, 2014 1:49 am

Hi Michael,
OK, thanks. I'll carry on trying things, and maybe check out the Logic forums. It doesn't sound right to me that quite high-end Apple software would have such a serious limitation, so I think I'm just not getting something.

I could, of course, just launch 18 separate instances of Aria, each containing one instrument - but I suspect that would quickly get me into CPU overload. It makes a nonsense of having a multi-timbral plug-in, if you can't work with it as multi-timbral.

I'll post an update if/when I come up with something. Meanwhile, further thoughts still very welcome.

Cheers

mightierpen
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Re: Garritan Instruments and Mixing Levels

Postby Credo » Wed Oct 08, 2014 1:14 am

mightierpen wrote:Hi
I've just found this thread, which seems relevant to the problem I'm having - can anyone help? I'm using Aria with Logic Pro 9 as my DAW. I'm trying (for the first time) to mix an orchestral arrangement using 3 instances of Aria, one with 14 instruments loaded (woodwind/brass), one with 3 (strings), one with 1 (solo harmonica). The problem is that while I can set an overall rough balance easily enough, I run into problems as soon as I try to adjust individual instruments (e.g. to bring out an oboe decorative phrase etc). Normally, this is a job for volume automation - but adjusting one track applies the adjustment to all tracks for that instance of Aria, so that's no good. I've therefore tried using Hyper Draw instead, which does seem to provide a means of controlling individual instruments separately; but applying multiple Hyper Draw instructions to the same passage of music on different tracks (to boost one and dip others) creates a chaos of rapid level changes on the channel gain - which isn't at all what I want.

So I tried giving up on working within MIDI, and bouncing each track to audio instead, so that I could use volume automation in the normal way. Unfortunately, bouncing crashes after about 14 tracks - I get a 'disk too slow' message, because I'm overloading the buffer. I can't see any way of creating/playing back 18 tracks of audio - altering the buffer size in Logic doesn't seem to help.

So I'm stuck. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.....


It seems to me like maybe you've instruments in ARIA set to OM instead of a specific MIDI channel? If that is the case, then all of the instruments will pick up controller messages and not care what channel they're set for.

Make sure each instrument set up in ARIA gets its own MIDI channel.

Use CC7 (Volume) and/or CC1 (Mod Wheel) events to the corresponding MIDI channel(s) to adjust.
Also be sure that your track(s) are set to send MIDI sequence data to the correct ARIA instance.

Whether you're using the MULTI-Output version of ARIA to work with multiple audio streams, or the one with just a single stereo bus...It should always be possible to control the Aria Volume MIXER via MIDI Controller CC7. Quite a few Garritan sample sets also accept dynamics from CC1.

You can also control Pan in the Aria Mixer with CC 10.
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Re: Garritan Instruments and Mixing Levels

Postby mightierpen » Thu Oct 09, 2014 2:58 am

Hi
Thanks to Michael B and Credo for the helpful posts. I've finally cracked it with help from Apple's Logic forum. What I was doing wrong was selecting 'multi-timbral' in Logic when creating the track, and then using the 16 tracks for the corresponding voices in the Aria player. It seemed the right and obvious thing to do. Wrong, because automation nodes then apply to all voices together. It seems there's no way (in Logic 9) to apply separate automation instructions to each voice of a multi-timbral instrument.

The way to do it is to create a normal single instrument track, then load Aria into it, taking care to select the 'Multi-channel 16x Stereo' version of Aria (don't try any of the others - you will get very peculiar output routings that don't make any sense). Route each of the instruments to a different output channel (1/2, up to 31/32). Then, back in the Logic mixer, create 16 aux channels, and create an Arrange window track for each channel (ctrl-click on the channel). You can now record to the aux tracks, they will solo correctly, and you have independent automation available.

Footnote to Credo: good thoughts, thanks. I wasn't using an omni setting in MIDI, though, so that wasn't part of the problem in this case. As to CC7, that's just the volume message, isn't it? - the one that the volume automation nodes write to? So it wouldn't solve the problem that the automation tracks were locked together. I think what you advise might apply to Logic X, but not Logic 9 (I've been told that in Logic X you can now route CC7 and CC10 direct to the plug-in, rather than to the instrument channel strips). I've been a bit reluctant to upgrade to Logic X, because it would mean converting to 64 bit, and that would give me a stack of problems outside of Logic.

Cheers :)

mightierpen
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