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3031 Views 16 Replies Latest reply: Aug 4, 2008 8:53 PM by WarriorAnt
Currently Being ModeratedJul 28, 2008 7:47 AM (in response to WarriorAnt)I think I remember the last time I tried to use SFS under Leopard, the instruments sounded like the sustain pedal was pressed permanently. So it might work with instruments that don't support sustain ...MacBook Pro 2.0 GHz, Mac OS X (10.5.3)
Currently Being ModeratedJul 28, 2008 4:00 PM (in response to WarriorAnt)The problem is not SoundFontSynth, but Apple's lack of care that DLSmusicDevice engine on which SoundFontSynth depends. It had a nasty habit of dropping its loaded samples without warning. That plus its author, Andy Drabble, got tired of reinventing the wheel every time Apple got the whim to completely change its OS foundation. I really can't blame him for that. The latest Intel version I got from him kills GarageBand 4 when you try to load an SF2 file.
To me, the real villain in this plot is Apple for ignoring the outcry regarding DLSmusicDevice. From DAY ONE, they should have allowed the ability to choose from various instruments embedded therein. Today it barely works at all.2.8 8-Core MacPro, Mac OS X (10.5.4), 2gb RAM
Currently Being ModeratedJul 28, 2008 10:58 PM (in response to Schneb)Thanks Schneb,
I never could figure out why Apple's DLSmusicDevice is so lame and why it has never been addressed by Apple.
I need to upgrade to Leopard. I'm wondering is there an application that will allow me to pull out an instrument from one of my soundfonts that has a multibank in it and make a new singular Soundfont that I can use with the DLSmusicDevice.eMac, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
Currently Being ModeratedJul 29, 2008 3:10 PM (in response to WarriorAnt)I'm afraid not without problems. The closest you will ever find is PolyPhontics GB...
Try the demo and see how far you get.
Why not alert us to the instruments you wish to use. Perhaps we know of some that can be used in GarageBand?2.8 8-Core MacPro, Mac OS X (10.5.4), 2gb RAM
Polyphonics sounds promising.
Most of the soundfonts I use I can't really say are actually instruments. They are more like strange and unusual sounds that people have made available as soundfonts. Over the years now I have collected quite a few.
I just realized that the free synthesizer "Crystal" allows the use of soundfont banks as instruments. I'll give that a try a see what happens.eMac, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
Currently Being ModeratedJul 31, 2008 11:20 AM (in response to WarriorAnt)That would be good to know and try. Unfortunately, I cannot find a player that would work with GarageBand.
What I really wish was out there is a utility that would create an EXS file from a SoundFont with a list of radio buttons to choose which instruments within the SoundFont to extract and convert.2.8 8-Core MacPro, Mac OS X (10.5.4), 2gb RAM
OK here's how to use a soundfont in the free Crystal synth.
First find the folder on your hard drive called CrystalPatchBanks. It will be in your preference folder.
Make another folder to be placed in the same preference folder (not in the CrystalPatchBanks folder) and call it CrystalSoundFonts. Name the folder exactly like this. It should now show up in the preference folder right under the CrystalPatchBanks folder.
Inside the CrystalSoundFonts folder you can place your soundfonts. I have made separate folders inside the CrystalSoundFonts folder to categorize them. Such as Ethnic, Orchestral, Synth, and inside those folders I place my soundfonts.
Now its on to the Crystal Synth itself.
Call up the Crystal Synth window. You will see 5 tabs which say "Modulation", "Voice 1", "Voice 2", "Voice 3", and "Mixer"
Click the Voice 1 tab. You will see a window called "Oscillator"
In the Oscillator window you will see a pull down window next to the label called "Type".
Click on the pull down window and you should see "Synthesized", "Sampled", and "SoundFonts"
Select the Soundfonts pulldown to access your soundfonts.
What this allows you to do is to select what source you want to be the Oscillators generator. In this case it is a soundfont.
So in effect you can use soundfonts to create a synth sound that is purley from that soundfont or mixed with other variables.
You can do this with each of the 3 voice sections of Crystal.
Of course when you first access your soundfont it will most likely not sound as if its straight from the soundfont. It will most likely be influenced by leftover parameters already in that selected Voice tab, and also by whatever was happening in the mixer section.
You may have to null all those parameters to get your straight soundfont to sound in its original way.
Yes i know this is a long roundabout way to get a soundfont to play but its also pretty exciting to find a synth that will allow you to use 1 to 3 soundfonts to create a whole new sound. Perhaps thats redemption enough for all the work.
I'm sure this will be exciting to those who like to program a synth for their own unique sounds. Me I'm a preset junky and mostly use whatever presets I find in any synth I use but I greatly admire anyone who can program their own synth sounds.eMac, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
I believe Crystal is one of those freebie synths that makes the user do all the installation work. I do not believe it comes with an installer. You may have to create the CrystalPatchBanks folder and place it in the path >users>your name>library>preferences>CyrstalPatchBanks.
I've had Crystal on my mac since 2004 and I remember having to do a lot of reading in the manual to get things going, perhaps making the folder CyrstalPatchBanks and placing it in the pref folder is one of them, along with making the folder CrystalSoundFonts.
Make those folders and see if you have access to the Crystal .fxb banks. If not then you will have to download the banks from the Crystal site and place them in the CyrstalPatchBanks folder.
The patches are here http://www.greenoak.com/crystal/patches.html
As far as saving a patch things get a bit more mysterious.
Within the user guide there is the patch management guide
There is the following instructions which will most likely give you the same headache it has given me! It says you can rename a patch and save it somehow but I do not see how. I beleive this may be an incompatibility with Garageband itself. Something that has perhaps never been addressed by the creators.
I just made a new Cyrstal sound by using a different soundfont in each of the 3 voice sections and then saving it in GB using the "Save Instrument" function. I then quit GB and restarted it and choose my new intrument and the settings all came back. This may be the best alternative.
From the Crystal manual.
*"Of course, many times when you import a patch, you'll end up tweaking it before you're happy with it. Because it is imported into a preset, your tweaks will be saved with your song. But, what if you want to use that tweaked version in another song? No problem. Notice how the Vintage1, Ambient1, and Motifs1 banks have unused patches? Those are for you to add your own patches. Say you imported "HackSaw", but tweaked it to make it just right for your song and now you want to make it easy to use that tweaked version in another song.*
*First rename it by clicking on the parameter display and typing in a name, for example "MyHackSaw".*
*If it isn't already selected, choose "Vintage1.fxb" from the Banks menu. This means we're going to write the MyHackSaw patch to the Vintage1.fxb bank file.*
*Now choose "unused" from the Write menu (below the Patches menu). This writes MyHackSaw into the slot previously occupied by the unused patch. Popup up the Patches menu and you'll now see MyHackSaw in the menu of patches for Vintage1.fxb. If you later, in a different song want to use MyHackSaw, simply browse to Vintage1.fxb using the browser and you'll have MyHackSaw right there waiting for you in the Patches menu."*eMac, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
Currently Being ModeratedAug 1, 2008 11:09 AM (in response to WarriorAnt)I still was not able to get the patch banks to work, but no matter the Fonts folder does! Saving my patches is a no-need in that I can save whatever presets in GarageBand. So the big and small is that it works great so far as a SoundFont player--which is what we were looking for!
Thanks for the lead, Warrior Ant.2.8 8-Core MacPro, Mac OS X (10.5.4), 2gb RAM
If you can get the presets to work they are worth the free sound.
On the modulation window of Crystal you should see the "Patches" area. there you will see two buttons "Browse" and "Breed". Click on Browse. In the pull down window should now appear the word "Banks" Click on that for the pull down window of all available "Banks". Select one. In another pull down window below the Banks window called "Patches" should appear the first preset of the Bank you selected above. The Patches pull down window will now give you a large variety of cool sounding presets to enjoy.
Cyrstal is definetly the long way around to play a soundfont. Perhaps the most exciting thing is that you can load up to 3 different soundfonts as generators in the Voice windows to create new sounds. You can also modify the soundfonts with Crystals effects within the synth itself.
Crystal does require a lot of CPU power though!
If only Apple would adopt the SoundFontSynth tech for GB all our problems would be solved.eMac, Mac OS X (10.4.11)