Realistic solo violin

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mediumaevum
KVRist
200 posts since 14 Feb, 2013

Post Fri Oct 18, 2019 7:54 am

I've composed two pieces featuring a realistic sounding solo violin VST.

In-fact I used a very old library from 8Dio and their solo violin sounds TERRIBLE out-of-the-box.

But with some tedious work on three controllers (Dynamics, Expression & Vibrato/Speed) manually drawing the curves for each and every single note + using the Dynamics patch and switching between the different articulations, I was able to achieve a very realistic sound. Some notes aren't quite as realistic as I'd like them to be, but this could be taken care of using some simple counterpoint with a second violin (from Performance Samples, free violin also adjustable using Expression & Dynamics) and a few ensemble patches.

I hope you like my two compositions anyway and would like to give your feedback:


NEW composition featuring the soloist (violin, of course) (21-10-2019):
https://soundcloud.com/mediumaevum-arti ... the-season

---original tracks for this thread---

https://soundcloud.com/mediumaevum-arti ... on-strings

https://soundcloud.com/mediumaevum-arti ... for-violin
Last edited by mediumaevum on Mon Oct 21, 2019 7:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Bansaw
KVRian
793 posts since 19 Aug, 2008

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Fri Oct 18, 2019 3:09 pm

1) I think you made a pretty good job of making them sound realistic. There are parts where the piece sounds "synthy" rather than realistic, e.g. 1:20, but you did a pretty good job.
8Dio (and SoundIron - which was at one point the same company) , their libraries do tend to take some work to get them to sound good, and are really not that playable. E.g. I have Requiem Light choir, and that takes some automation and tweaking.
2) 0:55 nice complimentary melody line there.

drumity
KVRian
1151 posts since 28 May, 2007

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sat Oct 19, 2019 4:13 am

Hi !
I know which amount of work you have to put in in such pieces.
With that said, I think you did a good job, not only with the automation, but also
with the short compositions.

You don't have to be Nostradamus to predict, that this thread will only get 4-5 comments, while other
dumb Troll-Threads of Kindergarten-Tom&Jerrys get thousands of views.
That's the way it is here and I just let the trolls trolling around with their sandboxes ...

Keep it up !
I used some orchestral libraries in these tracks,
if you'll get the chance to listen to them let me know.

SONG 1: viewtopic.php?f=14&t=524062

SONG 2: viewtopic.php?f=14&t=528509

(( D ))

dellboy
KVRian
1069 posts since 28 Mar, 2007

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sat Oct 19, 2019 4:33 am

Forget about whether they sound realistic - these are beautiful compositions, you have real talent.

I have bookmarked your soundcloud page to listen to more later.

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jancivil
KVRAF
19139 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sat Oct 19, 2019 10:08 am

Actually, this really isn't what a solo violin does on a stage, neither as regards the virtual acoustics nor the role or repertoire. Far be it from me to strenuously object to an unconventional modi operandi, but this sucks up every bit of oxygen in the 'room', and would be a violin if the instrument was 10 meters long and very deep... and still you have it amped, with tall stacks.
EG: the actual instrument just doesn't produce that kind of bass at all; kudos for that rich sound but as convincing violin idiom, no, not in this spacetime on planet earth.
Last edited by jancivil on Sat Oct 19, 2019 12:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

dellboy
KVRian
1069 posts since 28 Mar, 2007

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sat Oct 19, 2019 10:54 am

The violin is usually considered to be the hardest instrument to play, so hoping to emulate it with samples and using a keyboard or whatever is a pretty impossible task.

enroe
KVRian
1059 posts since 19 Mar, 2008 from germany

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sat Oct 19, 2019 12:19 pm

@ mediumaevum: You've created two very good violin songs! I amply enjoyed
listening to your medieval sounding string tracks!

Also I think the violins sound very realistic, no synth-like sterility - that is
astonishing! :tu:

Keep up this marvellous violin-work, please! :clap:
free mp3s + info: andy-enroe.de songs + weird stuff: enroe.de

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jancivil
KVRAF
19139 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sat Oct 19, 2019 12:33 pm

A violin filling up a room uses the room, its reflective capacities and it can do so only with a certain quality of instrument, which has the ability to project. A very different character than what appears here.

mediumaevum
KVRist
200 posts since 14 Feb, 2013

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sat Oct 19, 2019 12:33 pm

jancivil wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 10:08 am
Actually, this isn't what a solo violin does on a stage all, neither as regards the virtual acoustics nor the role or repertoire. Far be it from me to strenuously object to an unconventional modi operandi, but this sucks up every bit of oxygen in the 'room', and would be a violin if the instrument was 10 meters long and very deep... and still you have it amped, with tall stacks.
EG: the actual instrument just doesn't produce that kind of bass at all; kudos for that rich sound but as convincing violin idiom, no, not in this spacetime on planet earth.
Thank you very much for the critique.

I may have misunderstood your comment, so please let me know:

The bass isn't part of the solo violin sound.
It's... a bass. :)

I combined the solo violin with a string ensemble, including doubling the solo violin with a violin ensemble. The soloists are only there to emphasize the melodic part and to create a more "rich" sounding string ensemble.

Try listen to André Rieu playing a solo violin doubled by the entire string ensemble.
(at 46 sec)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pxD_NwWzKxU

enroe
KVRian
1059 posts since 19 Mar, 2008 from germany

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sun Oct 20, 2019 10:47 am

The debate about realistic sample instruments and acoustic
intruments is quite special:

--> If you play a sampled piano, a trained piano player will
always question the "realism" of that performance.

--> If you play a sampled drum set, a skilled and well-trained
drummer will always complain about the artificiality of the drum
sound.

--> This also counts for the play of a sampled violin: Everyone
who plays an acoustic violin will always encumber himself
about the sterility and artificiality of the sound.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

It is very difficult to value the qualitiy of a sampled instrument
and to rate the "realness" of a sampled instrument in an
objectiv way.

First you have to ignore all those persons who always say
that it doesn't sound right. That are those who have learnt to
play the mentioned acoustic instrument. And that are also
those who always like to complain about everything.

While ignoring these guys and listening unbiased from a
more distant view we can achieve a better valuation. I think
that the majority of listeners will hardly be able to differentiate
between most sampled instruments and acoustically recorded
instruments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

I carefully listened to "Medieval Fair For Violin". It has a
nice melody and I really like it. The violin sounds good and
realistic - though after a minute I had the impression that
it is all a bit too even and too uniform. This uniformity
feeds the suspicion that this might be a sample-violin.

But nevertheless: The effort put into this performance is
gigantic, and I think this song sounds excellent!
free mp3s + info: andy-enroe.de songs + weird stuff: enroe.de

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jancivil
KVRAF
19139 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sun Oct 20, 2019 11:29 am

"First you have to ignore all those persons who always say
that it doesn't sound right. That are those who have learnt to
play the mentioned acoustic instrument. And that are also
those who always like to complain about everything.

While ignoring these guys and listening unbiased from a
more distant view..."

I said what I said and I stand by it. If you don't agree with something about the assessment, you could go into that, but you'd rather talk shit about what people (or your straw men) do, isn't it.
I have no bias except to the reality of a violin, recorded on a stage. When people are able to capture such an idea well, I wouldn't "complain", I would in fact give kudos. A music critic I never wanted to be, I have no opinion really about this as a piece of music, it's none of my business and I'd bet its creator likes it a lot. Complain? I could absolutely ignore it, it's so absolutely no skin off of any part of me.

It's just an observation: it's not realistic. The topic title: "Realistic solo violin". Whatever this vague 'majority' of listeners represents, this is a naive effort and I get a pretty strong impression maevum is not really experiencing much orchestra in a hall in his life. These are going to continue to be inadequate for the world it aspires to or the person creating it gets a much clearer set of information about the materiel and gets back in the woodshed with that input.

There is a reason films use real orchestra in theatrical releases: the sense of the space. You won't miss in on a TV, you aren't missing it frankly in most reproductive media, but if the goalpost is *orchestral*, this is too 2D. If the idea is please yourself and not be burdened with people who do notice, fine. However, there are things which one can speak to in terms of the learning curve.

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jancivil
KVRAF
19139 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sun Oct 20, 2019 11:49 am

You won't miss <it> on a TV etc. This kind of result is never going to be a score for a film or series because it doesn't sound like what it's supposed to sound like in a really basic, generalistic way. It might be something for a game
enroe wrote:
Sun Oct 20, 2019 10:47 am
The debate about realistic sample instruments and acoustic
intruments is quite special:

--> If you play a sampled piano, a trained piano player will
always question the "realism" of that performance.

--> If you play a sampled drum set, a skilled and well-trained
drummer will always complain about the artificiality of the drum
sound.
the presumptuousness of this pronouncement is really impressive; almost solipsistic

But there's a perfect excuse?
Last edited by jancivil on Sun Oct 20, 2019 12:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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el-bo (formerly ebow)
KVRAF
14791 posts since 24 May, 2009 from A galaxy, far far away

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sun Oct 20, 2019 12:07 pm

Personally, I think the less said, by way of introduction, the better. At least, to allow people to judge on the strength of the pieces alone, which I thought were far more worthy than to just serve as tech demos :tu:

Really enjoyed both pieces.

Great job :tu:

fastlanephil
KVRian
827 posts since 3 Jan, 2016

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Sun Oct 20, 2019 7:48 pm

I thought the violins sounded pretty realistic for a VI. I don't think they sounded realistic as in a recorded live stage or studio recording as the sounds are of course by then second generation.

I enjoyed both.

I thought I'd post an old piece of mine that used the 2005 Garritan Stradivarius Solo Violin. I believe it was the first solo violin library. It was just a little too difficult to master for most people as you had to actually play it in using velocity while you controlled vibrato with the mod wheel and expression with an expression pedal. Editing was kind of a nightmare. One poster on the Garritan forum said his wife, who was a violinist told him it didn't sound like a violin to her. One of the developers is now part of Samplemodeling. They claim to have best solo string library for realism.

The violin starts at 1:32 for a short time. It is tribute to russian composer Galina UstVolskaya, "the lady with the hammer".

https://app.box.com/s/r4hfftibo5ispwkg59zchapctz7l9g44

mediumaevum
KVRist
200 posts since 14 Feb, 2013

Re: Realistic solo violin

Post Mon Oct 21, 2019 4:50 am

jancivil wrote:
Sun Oct 20, 2019 11:29 am
"First you have to ignore all those persons who always say
that it doesn't sound right. That are those who have learnt to
play the mentioned acoustic instrument. And that are also
those who always like to complain about everything.

While ignoring these guys and listening unbiased from a
more distant view..."

I said what I said and I stand by it. If you don't agree with something about the assessment, you could go into that, but you'd rather talk shit about what people (or your straw men) do, isn't it.
I have no bias except to the reality of a violin, recorded on a stage. When people are able to capture such an idea well, I wouldn't "complain", I would in fact give kudos. A music critic I never wanted to be, I have no opinion really about this as a piece of music, it's none of my business and I'd bet its creator likes it a lot. Complain? I could absolutely ignore it, it's so absolutely no skin off of any part of me.

It's just an observation: it's not realistic. The topic title: "Realistic solo violin". Whatever this vague 'majority' of listeners represents, this is a naive effort and I get a pretty strong impression maevum is not really experiencing much orchestra in a hall in his life. These are going to continue to be inadequate for the world it aspires to or the person creating it gets a much clearer set of information about the materiel and gets back in the woodshed with that input.

There is a reason films use real orchestra in theatrical releases: the sense of the space. You won't miss in on a TV, you aren't missing it frankly in most reproductive media, but if the goalpost is *orchestral*, this is too 2D. If the idea is please yourself and not be burdened with people who do notice, fine. However, there are things which one can speak to in terms of the learning curve.
Perhaps I should clarify my thread title: What I meant was this:

"As close to a real violin as _I_ could get a Virtual solo violin to sound like".

Of course it won't sound completely realistic. It never will, regardless of the library used and effort put into this.

But won't you say "it's good enough"? What would you like me to change to make it sound closer to a real violin?

Nothing can compete with the real world.

I do not have access to a real orchestra, so I have to use a virtual one instead.

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