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nostalgic gen

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Posts posted by nostalgic gen

  1. I think I have a synth that allows you to so-called pwm all waveforms. It might be the z3ta+ in fact. I don't know what it's actually doing, but I presume it's made possible due to the way pwm is implentated on wavetable synths. If a synth creates pulse width modulation of a square wave by applying an algorithm to the wavetable itself then clearly if you load a new sample into the wavetable it too will be affected in the same way by that modulation.

    I discovered this freeware synth from NI today. I'll share it here for anyone who's interested.

  2. :) Always look forward to hearing new stuff from Gray. The first 1:37 of this has a real Vangelis feel about it, especially when the melody kicks in. If you have it Gray, check out "Wait for Me" in the Bladrunner ost and you'll see what I'm talking about.

    I'm really not too keen on the transition at 1:37. That cymbal sounds like it's trying to mask the change to me. Really liked the percussion from about 2:20 to 3:00 (the part of the track I most attributed to arabic music) but again, the cymbal hits didn't really do it for me. I think the transition might have been smoother without them.

    Aside from that I thought it was excellent. Lots of really nice touches in it.

  3. Pd and jMax have to get a mention in there somewhere. Not only are they free, released under the GNU general public liscence, but they're also developed from the MAX/MSP software for Mac. Unlike MAX/MSP they unfortunately have no rewire support, since they're not commercial, but having evolved from MAX they could be consider superior in a number of ways. jMax is a java implementation of MAX/MSP and uses the java language to provide a much nicer looking user interface. Pd is a project developed by the same man who wrote MAX, which he was unhappy with for various reasons. Pd overcomes some of the limitations in MAX and is supposed to be more efficient. In fact, the MSP part of MAX/MSP was developed from pd. As you can see, the three programs are closely related and there's some information on the background of the programs here.

    Both jMax and pd are well supported in linux but have limitations under windows (incentive enough to warrent a closer look at linux for audio methinks). Jmax has an installer for windows but, as of yet, only the beta version is available in binary form. For later versions you have to compile the code from source. Pd, on the other hand, is quite well supported and has a dedicated community following at www.pure-data.org What's nice about pd is that it can be used as a vst host, so you can use your vst synths and effects seemlessly with it. What's not so nice is that it's much harder to use pd as a vst plugin itself, although I did find (but not yet test) a version of pd designed for this task here.

    I should point out that, although the software is very powerful, pd, at any rate, has a pretty steep learning curve and you're going to get your hands dirty if you really want to utilise it to its full potential. If you're new to concept of synthesis you're in for a lot of late night reading. However, if you're willing to learn about the meat and veg of digital audio (and there are some online resources to help you do this) then the sky is the limit. Not to mention you'll now be an audio guru.

    I've not used jMax at all so I can't really say much about it. From what I can gather its user interface is a lot similar to pd's although it looks much nicer. I suspect, however, that programming the two synths is quite different, although I think jMax ought to be easier owing to its modular nature. I'm sticking with pd, though. It's fairly straight forward once you get the hang of it and seems to be more actively supported by the community at large.

    Both are an exciting prospect though, particularly for those who like the idea of using their computer as a musical instrument. They're worth checking out.

  4. Ah, cool stuff. It's nice to see that OCR has grown outside of fruity loops finally. Whether intentional or not, the off-notes add bags of character and atmosphere to the tune and (perhaps luckily) really compliment the eerie style well.

    I'm glad the judges let this one through because, although there's undoubtedly room for improvement, this tune is the essence of what OCR is about for me. :)

  5. ...why be hatin on the other remixes posted recently? I like them a bunch, although they all have their faults.

    I don't think I've been particularly negative about anything I've commented on recently. I certainly didn't say I hated this piece: I said it sounds nice, which it does. But, while this piece sounds good I feel that it's working well inside its limits, playing it safe. There's nothing here that stands out and makes me want to hit the repeat button. If other people think it's great then that's wonderful. My comment is just one of many so I don't really see how it matters one way or t'other.

    Different people respond to music in different ways. This is my honest reaction to the tune. I can't offer any more than that.

  6. maybe its just in what i do, but i have come under the impression that clipping doesnt really happen until you actually compress it cause technically clipping doesnt happen unless you're playing the track really freaking loud, so loud that the speakers the sounds are coming out of cant go any louder. so really you cant clip until its being played really loud outside the computer.

    Well, it's not really to do with the speakers - they'll keep going until they tear themselves apart - but the amplifier. There's a limit to what the amplifer can take and once this is passed the signal starts to clip. This analogy can be applied to digital clipping as well. With both analogue and digital systems compression is often used as a means to prevent clipping. I know everyone likes to talk about a compressor making things louder but I think this is misleading. A compressor literally compresses a signal (which would indicate it gets quieter) then, after compression, a seperate amplifier is used to boost the amplitude back to a desirable level if required. This may be the same as it was at the input or it may be lower. Occasionally it may be higher. Usually one simply tries to return the signal level to what it was at the input (normalisation).

    What's important to realise here is that what we perceive as loudness and the actual amplitude of the signal in question is not necessarily the same thing. Sure, if you increase amplification you increase loudness but if you introduce a compressor into the chain then you can increase perceived loudness without additional amplification at all.

    A look back over this thread, on the rest of the forum and on the internet in general should explain why this is the case.

  7. I don't think I can be so positive about this one. Technically it's excellent and quite stylistic (I'm tempted to call the guitar clichéd and I know others would say the same about the synth bells) but it seems an odd marriage between the tense, shouting electric guitar and the soft ambient background. I can't say it particularly works for me. If these were two seperate tracks then I'd love them both. Put together like this they seem to be fighting for attention. It's an interesting project, to use these two contrasting styles but it's not a success for me, I'm afraid.

    Nevertheless, it's great to finally see more people submitting stuff that's not generic techno. Keep it up :)

  8. hehe, yeah it's funny when you read the posts of some people on the ineternet you'd think that their music must be some of the most amazing stuff since... ever, given their aparent expertise in the subject, and then you listen to it and find out it's a bit crap. Protricity, in contrast, (and I hope you don't get too offended by this :)) comes out with so much bullshit sometimes as to have you believe he's an idiot and then really surprises you with some of the best music at OCR. :P

    I think this is my favourite of yours as well. The whole thing flows wonderfully from begining to end, unlike some earlier pieces which seem to be impatient and want to move on to something else. Production is great as well - flawless, even. The only thing that I can say against the piece is that clarinet noise near the begining. Urghh, cheap GM patch #33? Anyway, thankfully it sounds a lot better (even good) when accompanied with the rest of the instruments. Perhaps one of the toms is a bit loose near the 4:30 mark? Ok, now I'm just searching for problems.

    I think I could listen to this all day actually; really great stuff. In fact I think this might be my favourite mix here. It's a real joy to listen to. :D

    Edit: With subsequent listens I regret my joke about the clarinet patch. It does stand out a bit on its own but fits into the arrangement perfectly and I love the vibrato and pitch bending that's applied. I'm still not entirely keen on the drums from about 4:10 to about 4:20 though (basically where the whole kit is used). It just comes over a little too strong for me and I'd be inclined to either tame it with some EQ or reduce the length of the release of some of the drums, or possibly both.

  9. It was hard to do though, not because of the notes or anything... but because the prelude itself needs to be quite legato and smooth, while the bass should be punchy and not muddy...

    It's interesting that you mention this because I was going to mention it in my feedback. I found it hard to pick out the bass especially on some of the low notes and actually couldn't tell if they were dissonant or not. The recording is probably a factor, as is my playback. My speakers I'm sure are emphasising (or indeed creating) the problem since they don't have a very good bass response, I've noticed.

    There have been a lot of comments regarding the second half of the arrangement being better than the first.

    I would concur with this view. I'm not sure quite why though. Perhaps the composition just gets a bit better as you get more into it? The left hand really wasn't doing much at times and felt quite detatched and almost distracting. Playing the same note over and over, at a different octave once in a while, was where it was at its least successful for me. I think this happened more in the first half.

    I noticed it complimented, and indeed shaped, the tune much better when it sat an octave higher. This might be a compositional thing; it might be also to do with the fact that, since the left hand is quite far down the keyboard it's panned a good deal to the left, so it sounds detatched in the mix, played to one side. This can't have helped any.

    To be honest I was a little underwhelmed by the use of dissonance in this piece, after all the discussion. I suppose it's a bit more unusual for here but I think most of the progressions used are well tried and tested, to be fair. That's not meant as a criticism btw; the important thing is whether or not it works and I think most of it does.

    ...but my roots do lie in the early 20th century, where music still has a tonal basis, but strays far from it at times.

    This is probably where I'm most comfortable as well. Debussy had it sussed. I think modern composers can get caught in a vice and, so desperate not to sound too boring or normal, just end up rearranging it into a sound akin a cat walking up and down the keyboard, which can become just as boring in itself. One tends to become immune to it after a while. It just become background noise. But I digress...

    Good work anyway, this was a good arrangement for sure and, although there's room for improvement, it's not half bad as it stands. :)

    I'll be sure to check out your other piece some time.

  10. yay, this is coolness, although I think I'm passed the best of it now. The great sound effects at the begining should appear more. :) I also don't like that snare. Not enough bite; it needs a shorter and sharper decay. Hehe, the pseudo fade-out is cool and a little cheeky, I think.

    For once I actually know the original and I really like what's been done with it. This is certainly moving into my permanent directory. :)

  11. I find it amusing and kind of strange that given the abundantly warm welcome this remix has found at this site, that PC game soundtracks are still under-represented and under-appreciated at this, and many other game soundtrack communities. Does it take a remix of a console classic for Mr. Soule to earn some well-deserved recognition? I mean, this track is great... the original is a favorite of mine, and Mr. Soule certainly does it justice in this remix. I'm just saying that his own ORIGINAL pieces in games like Icewind Dale, Giants: Citizen Kabuto (which had just an AWESOME soundtrack), Neverwinter Nights, Morrowind, and Star Wars: KotoR are absolutely wonderful (in my opinion, even better than this remix) and don't really get the praise and attention they should. Maybe because they're PC games, maybe because they're non-Japanese games, I dunno.

    This is possibly a subject for discussion in its own right. If it's any consolation I'm currently working on a remix of a pc game. But that's for a different thread..

  12. Anyone notice the clipping around the 2:14 mark?

    No clipping here even at considerable volume. There is a trill being played that might be confusing you though. I suppose it could sound like crackling on a lofi system.

    Reliance on gigasamples will only get one so far, and yet there will still be a point that lack of technical skill will still catch up with them.

    Well given that this is an orchestral piece, and seeing it's unlikely how he'd hire an orchestra for the sole purpose of providing OC with a remix, I don't see what else his options are. He's clearly not just fired up gigastudio and played a .mid file through it but has spent a lot of time putting this arrangement together. He obviously knows his way around both this (vast) sample library and a *real* symphony orchestra. From that pov I'd say technical skill is displayed in abundance and I can't really see where you're coming from.

  13. Didn't really like the variation much. Didn't like the chord choices. Seemed to me the original sections did not fit the terra sections well at all. Example: at 1:40, its as if he made some original progression and played terra over it whether it fit or not. He does this alot throughout the song. There is a lot of repeating.

    Heavy Heavy reliance on sample quality; the gigasamples or whatever they are, they carry the song which wouldn't be much without them.

    Way too short. Really ends too soon, and considering how much repeated, its kind of a let down.

    I suppose my standards were held at the Final Fantasy Symphonic Suite on the Reunions cd or whatever it was called. That piece is very similar to this, but damned damned creative and well done. Simply put, I never really see these fake orchistra pieces even comming remotely close to the level of the professional real orchistrations or matching their creativity.

    Ha...sounds like someone's a little jealous. :D

    Hehe, I'd have enjoyed reading that in the judges decisions forum.

    There is a lot of repeating.

    This is a criticism I've heard from you time and again and I must say I think it's a lazy one. Music by its very nature is repetative; your own submissions prove no exception.

    Well I agree with Fritz that obviously one expects a professional with a top notch studio to submit a top notch remix, which he has, but surely that's missing the point. I think it's great that somebody from inside the industry that inspires us has chosen to show his appreciation for our efforts in this way. Regardless of the work submitted, I for one say "thank you."

    I also hope that it's not your last contribution. :)

  14. I think I have to agree with Raven. I did enjoy it and technically it's very good but it didn't really do anything for me, I'm afraid. The original has me dancing in my chair everytime I play the game so that's the essence that I'd like to see captured in a remix of it. This doesn't make me bounce up and down with excitement, rather I stiffle a yawn instead. Like I said, this isn't bad by any means, it's... well, it's nice.

  15. ah here we go. Finally something closer to the sort of music I often listen to. :) This is pretty good. I'd get rid of that flute though. I guess it's personal taste to me but I thought it was a bit cheesy. Also there's no expression in it, perhaps why it sounds cheesy. The rest of it was cool though and the beat was a surprising but welcome addition. Not least because, until it came, I was worried with the swelling pads and its new age sound that this was going to sound an awful lot like an OCR WIP of my own! But yeah, the breakbeat added a nice modern touch to the song.

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