Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?)

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b rock
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2006/03/17 14:27:17 (permalink)

Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?)

You won't believe how easy this is. You can load any Scala file (.scl file extension) within Rapture with the click of a mouse. And you can do that on a per-Element basis. 6 Elements, and 6 potential alternate tunings. I'm assuming that the 1.1 update of Dimension Pro will follow with the same process. This may be even more useful in sample-based Dimension, because of the ability to load historically accurate tunings for period pieces or 'world music' with traditional instrumentation. Of course, Rapture will also "do" samples. No less exciting is the prospect of taking Rapture to unexplored territory with 21st century synthesis.

Here's what you do: navigate to the Pitch Modulator in an Element, and click on the Keytracking window. A loading dialog pops up. I was all set to go to where my Scala files reside, but there are 200 defined .scl files that ship with Rapture. Looks to be the most common choices. A pleasant surprise. Then, just repeat the procedure with the other 5 elements.

You may be wondering what use 6 different tunings might serve. Well, not only can you get exotic stacks of vertical scales, but you can "sequence" different SCALA overlays by stepping through the Elements. Only need three Elements for a piece? Copy & paste these to the last set of 3, and give the 'instruments' an alternate tuning. Then, fly in the two groups of three at the appropriate point in the timeline of a project. Alternately (pun intended), you can load several quite similar Scala files to unique Elements, and have only those points of departure between tunings stand out in exquisite 'atonal' harmony.

This is crazy good, and very easy to try out. If you don't like what you hear, Shift+Click (on the Keytracking window again) resets your Element to standard tuning. You mix this up with those luscious oscillators and detuning, and well, I can't imagine how you would do this in another way that could be simpler. You've got to check this out.
#1

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    René
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    RE: Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?) 2006/03/17 18:42:38 (permalink)
    200? I thought they were 3304 approximately.




    -René
    #2
    b rock
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    RE: Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?) 2006/03/17 18:59:18 (permalink)
    200? I thought they were 3304 approximately.
    Should've dug deeper. You're right on the numbers. And I thought that it was because I copied the .zip download contents over from Sonar.
    That's what I get for glancing at the manual [page 49; last full paragraph]. I'll never do that again. DRTFM.

    Here's betting that the proofreader gets the plain doughnut at this Monday's staff meeting at HQ. No need to download; Rapture's already pre-loaded.

    Edit:
    3304 approximately
    Yeah, you were fairly close. If you consider a tolerance of +/- 0.0000% to be accurate.
    Oh. You gave us a few user-defined LFO waveforms to play with, eh, Rene? These I can count: 8.
    post edited by b rock - 2006/03/17 19:24:57
    #3
    René
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    RE: Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?) 2006/03/18 09:43:37 (permalink)
    Oh. You gave us a few user-defined LFO waveforms to play with, eh, Rene? These I can count: 8.



    Yes. Err, almost. That if you don't count those which are wav files, and which we are using for oscillators. Copy->Rename and you can use those as LFO waveforms as well.



    -René
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    René
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    RE: Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?) 2006/03/18 09:48:04 (permalink)
    BTW. The standard tuning, as we all know, moves the pitch 100 cents/key.

    In both DP and RP, we can adjust that amount using the main KEYTRACK control in the display, for each element. We can make it more or less, resulting in less pitch variation for each new key. This goes down to zero (same pitch in the whole keyboard), and then goes negative (for that very cool reversed-keyboard trick).

    Once you load a Scala file to print a microtuning into your pitch definition, the KEYTRACK control still operates, allowing to 'shrink' the tuning span. Isn't it cool?

    Per element.


    -René
    post edited by René - 2006/03/18 09:54:29
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    b rock
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    RE: Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?) 2006/03/18 09:55:14 (permalink)
    Isn't it cool? Per element.
    It sure is. I just tried that. Rapture -ific!
    Thanks.

    Edit: I give up on the numbers. No time for analysis. It's just time to play.
    Edit 2: I like the way that the Keytracking GUI 'warps' with a loaded .scl file. Nice touch. And 'hovering' tells you what .scl is loaded.
    Just to clarify, we're talking about the overall Keytracking adjustment in the Editing window up top.
    post edited by b rock - 2006/03/18 10:51:37
    #6
    Paradroid
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    RE: Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?) 2006/03/18 16:41:35 (permalink)
    I give up on the numbers. No time for analysis. It's just time to play.

    That-a-boy! I never understood the whole “don't look at the numbers!” philosophy until the SL arrived.
    #7
    b rock
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    RE: Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?) 2006/03/24 00:44:17 (permalink)
    I never understood the whole “don't look at the numbers!” philosophy
    Sometimes the numbers are your friend; other times they just get in the way. Preaching to the choir, Dale?

    I've got two reasons to *bump* this thread. First, it's become the primer for a Scala 1.01 tutorial that I just put up. You read the first post, and that's pretty much all you have to know to get started on your experimental explorations. Secondly, I'd like to relay a little story, and I believe that speaks volumes about the company that we're dealing with on these forums. Bear with me here, folks.

    I was tossing around the idea of exploring Scala online for quite some time. That time is ripe, considering the implementation in z3ta+, the recent release of Rapture, and the upcoming 1.2 update to Dimension Pro. So, I dove into some ideas, and I kept coming up with a little "anomaly" in the process. At first, I assumed that it was 'user-error', so I kept plugging away at testing when time permitted. The conclusion? It wasn't me.
    If you don't like what you hear, Shift+click (on the Keytracking window again) resets your Element to standard tuning.
    While this is true, the GUI 'widget' locks up after Shift+click, and won't allow additional loading of Scala files (on a per-Element basis). It's no big deal, because you can close out Rapture's GUI in your host application, re-open it again, and operation returns to normal. Alternately, you can load up the B Rock Equal Tempered.scl listed first in the Scala 1.01 tutorial, and just keep going. This is a 'reset' file that brings Rapture back to Standard Tuning, so there's no need to close/re-open Rapture and interrupt your workflow.

    I thought that this quirk was important enough to make mention of, so I dropped a quick line to a well-known [Cakewalk] representative. In it, I (very) briefly detailed what I had seen, where I had observed it, and what I had done to get there. Things are busy here, so I checked back my mail again in four or six hours. In a waiting reply, I found out that not only had the "anomaly" been verified, but it had been diagnosed with a fix already put in to QA. The fix will be in place for the release of Dimension Pro 1.2, and it's been added to a future Rapture 1.1 update. In less than half of a normal work day.

    Here's the clincher: I had made mention of the impending tutorial possibility, and how the quirk might inevitably pop up somewhere in the discussion. I was assured that this wouldn't be an issue, as Cakewalk wasn't in the business of sweeping things like this under the rug. They want their products to work as advertised, and work well under any user conditions.

    I'd say that this is one company policy to be admired; one that's not a given by any means among the competition. Great work, Cake team. Thanks.
    post edited by b rock - 2006/03/24 00:54:40
    #8
    Paradroid
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    RE: Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?) 2006/03/24 03:37:41 (permalink)
    I dropped a quick line to a well-known [Cakewalk] representative

    That “well-known representative” is incredible. I can vouch for your bug fix story. Different bug (sfz: offset + end + reverse = argh!) but same turn around. That's why Cake's got my money. Period.
    #9
    awilki01
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    RE: Microtuning in Rapture (and DimPro 1.1?) 2006/03/29 22:24:14 (permalink)
    After what I've seen here in the forum and the support that Cakewalk gives to its user base, I am definitely a Cakewalk customer for life.
    #10
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