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have controller, what else do i need


GP2221

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I'm kind of new to this, so please forgive me for asking a stupid question...

 

I have an old Roland 76-key controller that I would like to play with. I also have a M-Audio Audiophile 24/96 which has MIDI IN/OUT.

 

The last time I used this controller (back around 1990), I connected it to a Turtle Beach Multisound sound card which had a built-in hardware (I think E-Mu) synth. There were a couple of programs that came with the sound card that I could use to make music.

 

So, I assume that I will need to connect the controller to the MIDI port on my Audiophile 24/96 and use a softsynth. Will I need anything else just to play around and make sounds/music? I'd like to be able to select multiple instruments and play... Maybe even have different instruments assigned to different zones on the keyboard. The latest issue of Electronic Musician has an article that lists several sub $100 softsynths. I plan to get a copy and read about this tonight. Is there anything else I need to learn?

 

Thanks in advance for your advice!!

 

Gregg

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the main thing to look for is if there is a 'stand-alone' version.

if not, you will need a 'host' program.

i use cubase, and the instruments come as vsti's.

cakewalk uses dxi's, but you can use a wrapper.

not sure about macs.

 

one place to look is here:

 

http://www.harmony-central.com/Software/

 

another is here:

 

http://www.kvr-vst.com/

 

kvr has some programs that can be used as hosts, and also has tons of instruments.

last time i looked, HC had some standalone programs and also some demos that could be used as hosts.

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mildbill,

 

Thanks for responding. I'm sorry, but I don't understand your advice. You said to look for a 'stand alone' version. A stand-alone version of what? And what do you mean by a host program?

 

I assumed all I would need was a softsynth. This program would allow me to select different instruments. I could select one (like grand piano) and play my keyboard/controller. Then the keyboard would sound like a piano.

 

Are you saying I need a stand-alone version of a softsynth?

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gp221: you need to do a little basic research on this, but this might help:

 

stand alone softsynth: a program that can be run on your computer and be played like you describe.

 

plug in soft synth: a program which is 'plugged into' another program so it can be used.

 

host program: runs on your computer, but other, usually smaller programs can be plugged into the host for various purposes.

 

most softsynths are plug ins because there are several benefits. you can record what you play as midi info which can then be manipulated.

you can record the softsynth as audio which can then be processed.

midi/audio sequencers like cubase, logic, DP, etc. are the usual host programs, but i've seen other types at kvr.

 

can anyone else here make this clearer?

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Originally posted by mildbill:

[QB]gp221: you need to do a little basic research on this, but this might helpQB]

That's why I came here to ask the question. :) Can you recommend any other sites for this type of info?

 

Thanks for your help!

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do you have a sequencer?

do you want to record what you play?

are you looking to program your own sounds, or play presets?

do you have larger overall goals, or just want to goof around?

 

if you want to learn more, you could subscribe to some mags - you mentioned EM, and Keyboard is also good for general keyboard related stuff.

but mags like future music, computer music, music tech, and so on, are geared more to computer/softsynth type stuff.

Keyboard/Jim Aikin put together a book consisting of some of their softsynth reviews. if you haven't been a regular reader, it'll give you a lot of new info.

 

taking a class or 2 in this stuff doesn't hurt either.

you can also do some general searches on the net for stuff like midi, softsynths, sequencers and so on.

visit your local music store and see what they recommend you to start with after explaining what you want to do.

usually the concepts and terminology are more confusing than the actual doing.

good luck.

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Originally posted by mildbill:

do you have a sequencer? no

 

do you want to record what you play? possibly, yes

 

are you looking to program your own sounds, or play presets? play presets

 

do you have larger overall goals, or just want to goof around? mainly, just goof around

Mildbill - Thanks for all of your advice.
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