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Re: Soft synths for guitar

> On Sun, Dec 30, 2012 at 8:07 PM, Kevin Cheli-Colando
> <billowhead@gmail.com> wrote:

>> So, with that in mind, anyone have any soft synths they find especially
>> fun
>> to play via guitar synth?

I think the most fun soft synths are those with a built-in
arpeggiator. With that the synth becomes an extension of the guitar's
playability rather than just another add-on to its sound.

There are many arpeggiating soft synths around and I personally have
and use Alchemy and Rob Papen Albino. On some occasions I have used
the arpeggiator in Ableton Live to juggle around my guitar chord notes
into some of Live's synths. Alchemy's arp is a little more fun though,
because in one mode it can be set to work similar to "insert" on an
EDP/Mobius, meaning adding each new note you play to the loop length
of the arpeggio. When playing with an arpeggiator it makes sense to
assign an expression pedal to the filter cut-off of the synth, so you
can bring it down or up as your music flows.

Another soft synth with good arpeggiating at hand is Omnisphere. I
have no hands-on experience with it myself though. Given the huge
installation it is a typical instrument that I hold off from buying as
long as I can do without it ;-)  The dozen synths in Logic/Mainstage
is hard to beat for the work I do because they are all so well
integrated and thus very fast to work with. I know though that you can
replicate a lot of Vangelis' classic synth sounds with Omnisphere, so
if such a project should up it might be a reason for me to get it.

Sampling is also great fun with MIDI guitar! I started with a Roland
SE-3000 in 1990 and had each guitar string send over its own MIDI
channels so I could load a unique sound for each string in the
sampler. At one fret a loop could be triggered while the next fret had
a string pad chord going off; I typically set the number of voices for
each string so low that a new sound would take over from the previous
sound on that string, so the fretboard became a kind of sample/loop
trigger grid (like the spreadsheet design of Mobius and Ableton Live
session view). With software samplers setting up and editing sampler
patches is so much faster. The EXS24 of Logic/Mainstage is my main
workhorse both for playing live and producing recordings... oh, I just
recalled I uploaded a video with the EXS24 a while back:
http://youtu.be/P3pOhBKAC-A: the guitar sound you hear behind the
Stick string sound is my Stratocaster that I have sampled and made an
EXS24 patch of  (You hear that best from 3:39 and out). The cool thing
here is that I set the sampler's attack to quite slow, so it won't
interfere with the natural string attack but kind of sneak in
smoothly. Another good, in fact a lot more advanced, sampler is
Kontakt. But for mocking up my own sampler instrument patches I prefer
EXS24 because it faster. Kontakt has its own scripting functionality
that makes it more suited for situations when you buy maybe a string
orchestra library where someone has put in a lot of scripting work to
make it sound gorgeous.

Greetings from Sweden

Per Boysen