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Posts from April 2008

Green Oak Crystal VST - Free Semi-Modular Synthesizer for PC and Mac

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I've been doing some research to find new synths to increase my palette of sounds. Along the way I "re-discovered" Crystal which is a very cool Semi-Modular synthesizer. It reminds me a little of Zebra 2 and Absynth 4 but - it's free! Pretty amazing considering the feature set - "...semi-modular software synthesizer featuring both subtractive syn  and frequency modulation (FM) synthesis. It offers abundant modulation control with over 90 parameters which may be modulated, multi-stage envelopes with graphical editors, extensive tempo sync of envelopes/lforates/delay times, built-in effects for chorus/flanging/comb filtering/echoes, and a band splitter for effects processing by frequency band. Not only that, Crystal has wave sequencing, granular synthesis, program morphing, MIDI learn, and imports soundfonts. The musical applications for Crystal are literally boundless."

Installation is manual but straightforward. Simply follow the instructions on the download page. Don't forget to grab the additional waveforms and patches. 

As I mentioned this synth is free and the developer, Glen Olander, says creating Crystal is a "labor of love, so I don't accept payments from Crystal users." He does accept donations on behalf a senior center though so if you want to donate go to the bottom of the about page.

Mark Mosher
www.markmoshermusic.com
www.modulatethis.com


Ableton Live 7.0.5 Free Update Available

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Ableton has released Live 7.0.5, a free update for registered users. You can download the update from http://www.ableton.com/latest_versions or by using the 'Check for updates...' command from Live's help menu.

While the list of improvements and fixes is rather small (see below), users on the Ableton forum are reporting that 7.0.5 improves stability and performance (load times, drops outs). I've not used it much yet, but in a quick test agree that songs load faster.

Improvements:

  • Updated manuals.
  • Updated texts.
  • When switching the Library to a folder on a different hard drive, a message box appears asking if the current library should copied to the new location too.

Bug fixes:

  • Playing the “Clavibell.adg” preset from Puremagnetic Wavebase package could lead to a crash.
  • Live could crash if the root dir of a file browser is set to a non-existing directory.
  • Folders below the current selected Library folder or the current project could not be bookmarked.
  • The message box with the information about the installed packages would miss a scrollbar if many packages would be installed.
  • In Sampler, pan would not working properly.
    http://www.ableton.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=88744
    Duplicate an audio track containing a clip with certain envelopes could lead crash Live.
  • http://www.ableton.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=88971
    Grouping a top level effect device that has any of its parameters macro-mapped would crash Live.

Mark Mosher
www.modulatethis.com
www.markmoshermusic.com


MusicTech Focus: Ableton Live Magazine - Great Info for Those New to Ableton Live

MusicTech Magazine has created a 132-page special edition that concentrates purely on Ableton Live and features. It contains brand new Live 7 tutorials, interviews with power users, 9 classic Live 6 workshops, full Live 7 review, free DVD with workshop resources and 20 Ableton video tutorials. This is available online and at local bookstores.

I flipped through a copy I found at my local Borders here in the US and thought that the tutorials were very comprehensive. If you are new to live this would be money well spent.

Mark Mosher
www.markmoshermusic.com
www.modulatethis.com


Novaton Music Automap 2.0 Now Available for ReMote users

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Novation Music announced Universal Automap 2.0 back in January. The first Novation product to utilize Automap 2 was the Nocturn. Automap 2.0 is now available as a free download for Novation’s ReMOTE SL series and ReMOTE SL COMPACT owners.

I own the Remote SL 25 and just installed the 2.0 update on Vista and all seems fine. Two general tips I can offer when installing updates for Novation controller is to 1) exit the Automap application running in your tray prior to installation 2) turn off or unplug other USB controllers during install.

I'm still trying to figure out the best way to use this with Live and will offer more posts on this in the future. Also, while the software is available, the documentation hasn't been posted yet but there is a manual from the beta test listed in links below.

Links:

Mark Mosher
www.markmoshermusic.com
www.modulatethis.com


FL Studio Video Tutorial: Using the Keyboard Editor to Modify Pitch, Drag Notes, and add Portamento

Watch this video on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLZTxaNsCEg.

This video tutorial covers how to go sequence with the Keyboard Editor and covers creating notes with different pitches, moving notes, and using portamento.

If you are new to FL Studio, you can save 10% with this link.

Mark Mosher
www.markmoshermusic.com
www.modulatethis.com