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Portamento

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Portamento

Postby Eric Labrie » Thu Dec 11, 2014 7:35 am

Hi folks

I would like to know How do you manage Portamento in GPO4? I read the manual but not quiet understand how it works. Do you edit #CC5? Or just turn the knob Inside Aria player until you get an overall satisfying result?
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Re: Portamento

Postby Credo » Tue Jan 13, 2015 10:51 pm

My understanding so far is:

1. To engage the automatic portamento you'll need the instrument to be playing in legato mode. To make this happen with standard patches that support portamento you'll apply CC64 (standard patches) or CC68 (notation version of patches).

According to this excerpt from the manual you have some options for this 'legato' controller:
Legato Controller CC#64 – Legato
This controller is used to create legato lines. You can use an external sustain pedal to control the legato function or it can be entered in your sequencer by hand. Pedal up (CC#64, value 0-63) is detache, pedal down (CC#64, value 64-127) for legato. Alternatively, you could use the Auto-Legato feature.


2. Next you can manipulate CC20 to change the amount of portamento in real time. The interval between pitches will also have an affect on how much and how fast the portamento is, so it might well be essential to be prepared to tweak CC20 throughout a phrase to get a desired effect. You can assign CC20 to a slider, pot, joysitck, wheel, etc. if you have the hardware to do that. Also, most DAWs will allow you to draw this information right into a track editor or control lane.

Notation/Score editing programs should have a way to build 'expression maps' so that inserting a particular symbol or marking into the score will send the appropriate controller data. Some scoring packages will also allow you to record controller data in real time on a separate staff set to the proper channel, edit it at will, and then make it 'invisible' later when you are ready to print.

Also check the manual for a special "Hidden Pitchbend Defeat Controller CC# 19". Some instruments have a special layer that will IGNORE pitch bending (and portamento?) if CC19 is applied, so you can use this as an extra way to get some control over tricky passages that aren't doing what you want with portamento and pitch bends.

3. Sometimes....it's easier just to use pitch bend instead of the automatic portamento. Again, you can use a combination of real time recording and MIDI track editing, and this approach is where smart application of the CC19 controller will really shine.

As a CuBase user, I've gradually built myself a collection of 'expression maps' that allow me to easily call up presets for commonly used dynamics, articulations, styles, and techniques that can simply be dragged onto a controller lane, score editor, or piano roll editor. Other DAWs usually have similar abilities. Once I get it 'roughed in' using my expression maps...I can go back and tweak by hand, or 'record' controller sweeps from my hardware MIDI controller 'in real time' on independent DAW tracks for a more musical phrase.

Hope this gives you some ideas....
The main key is to 'experiment' and 'try things' as you browse through your Sequencer/DAW/Scoring Package manual. These days you get all sorts of choices in how to make things better for your OWN project types and work flow choices.

To get the most of this library, you really will want to experiment with all of the supported controllers. Each instrument will will have a 'controls' section or tab in the Aria player where you can adjust them on screen with the mouse. Each control will tell you what CC it will respond to via MIDI data. Also there are a few universal CC messages that ALWAYS apply (Like instrument volume [CC7], expression volume [CC1], pan [CC10], velocity, aftertouch [CC131], etc.)...as well as some hidden controllers for shifting tremolo effects with string sections...so check the manual for those controllers as well.

It may well save you a bunch of time in the long run to go ahead and see what type of 'expression map' system your sequencer supports. If it doesn't have such a thing....use a good ole note book to jot down your base and most commonly used settings so you can quickly draw them into your editor. I.E. Say you've found a nice marcato sound by using the regular sustained violin and tweaking the sustain, decay, and maybe some other filters you see on the controller tab. Add it to your expression maps or jot it down in your notebook. It won't be long until you get the hang of it.....

Credo
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Re: Portamento

Postby SysExJohn » Wed Jan 14, 2015 3:47 am

Excellent post Credo,

So, play a note, engage the legato control (cc#64 or cc#68 as in Credo's post) then apply cc#20 before the next note, play the next note and you will get a slide from the first to the second note. In a MIDI file the notes should overlap.

If the portamento is no longer required, return cc#20 to zero.

If the legato is no longer required, return cc#64 (or cc#68) to zero.

Release the second note.

One of the other essential elements to understand is that cc#20 affects the rate of pitch change between the first and second note. If the interval is small, e.g. a tone or semitone then a fairly high value is required. If the interval is larger, e.g. a third or a fifth, then a smaller value is required.

The key (sorry) to mastering it is experimentation, as Credo has explained.

Please note too that it's not only the mod wheel (cc#1) that controls expression, although this is the most convenient for playing live. cc#11 (expression) usually a foot controller, and cc#2 (breath) usually found on an electronic wind controller, can be used instead of cc#1. They all work in an identical way. But just use one of them on any single ARIA based instrument.

John.
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