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22 September 2005

Synful Orchestra plugin

Filed under: Music software at 1:36 am (2 comments)

Synful Orchestra is an orchestra instrument plugin. It sounds like a fantastic idea: most orchestral instrument plugins will respond to key velocity and modulation — Synful Orchestra responds as a whole, in a complex way, to a full range of expressive gestures such as staccato notes and portamento. It’s almost as if you are conducting an orchestra rather than playing an instrument. Synful, the makers, put it this way: “Synful Orchestra responds to the performer. When you play a phrase with legato and detached notes, with accents, and pedal nuances, Synful Orchestra responds with realistic sounding slurs, tonguing, and bowing. No laborious editing of performances to select from a limited set of articulations in a sample library.”

Careful — the phrase “slurs, tonguing, and bowing” could easily be taken out of context. Anyway, Synful Orchestra may have rather a plain user interface, but the ideas behind it are pretty interesting. Eric Lindemann, the man behind the software, has a very impressive CV, and has patented the technology used in Synful Orchestra. The website has more information on the plugin. It says: Synful Orchestra is not a sampler or a sampler library. Synful Orchestra is not a physical modeling synthesizer. It is an entirely new concept in music synthesis. At the heart of Synful Orchestra is Synful’s Reconstructive Phrase Modeling (RPM) technology. This is the result of many years of research, several patents, and a lifetime of experimentation, design, and frustration with older synthesis technologies.

To realize the Synful Orchestra sound examples using even the most advanced sampler with the best sample libraries would require many hours manually selecting samples to achieve different note articulations. Even then the results would be disappointing, stiff, and unnatural. This is because it is impossible to achieve realistic musical phrasing for expressive instruments using samplers. A sample library is a collection of recordings of isolated notes. It is not surprising that when these recordings are strung together they sound like a sequence of unrelated isolated notes. With Synful Orchestra things are different:

  • Synful Orchestra models transitions between notes automatically.
  • Synful Orchestra models vibrato and extends the duration of notes using sophisticated statistical techniques. Sample loops with all their limitations are a thing of the past.
  • Synful Orchestra responds to volume, pitch, and velocity changes with continuous changes in timbre, just like a real instrument.

    NELSON on 19 May 2006 at 9:41 am

  2. […] Synful Orchestra pluginSep 22, 2005 … Synful Orchestra is an orchestra instrument plugin. It sounds like a fantastic idea: most orchestral instrument plugins will respond to key velocity … […]

    Orchestral plugin | Purepassionbyk on 16 September 2011 at 9:51 am

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