Making a new sample format and aiming to take over the market is a long term thing. Ambitious, yes, good to do and have, yes. I have long wished all of Linux-audio would be this ambitious, taking the lead in innovation instead of following and always falling behind. I would, however, argue that this will take longer than making Kontakt and VSL sampling possible on Linux (be it through converters, engine implementations, or through prodding NI/Vienna)...or not.
It's a question of which one is likelier to succeed and which one presents us with a working solution faster. They both may take years. But if one of them takes even a year less, then I vote we go with that one. If reverse engineering is indeed as tall an order as I have been told, then I would concur with Nils. Even if it sounds a bit utopian, the way forward would be to 1. see what Kontakt does to deserve it's popularity, 2. make a format and engine and innovate to make it better than Kontakt, and 3. take over the sampling market.
One possible thing which may have led Kontakt to it's rise - Komplete.
I'm a bit of a newb, but I don't know any other sample pack this comprehensive. If it indeed has been taken up by major producers for the convenience and flexibility (that's the impression I get when I hear people talk about it), then a lot of pros are basically using Kontakt. This is an important win for the VSL format too - they simply have _the_ best samples = the samples are popular = the format is popular. And this is one aspect we cannot hope to compete in, unless we encourage people who charge for samples, which directly leads to the DRM debate. No DRM = loss of money, DRM = unethical. Unless something like 'make small _good_ sample projects (charge for them or not, but do anything to ->), gain reputation and experience, and eventually engage in Kickstarter campaign(s) for production of big-a**, obscene-quality sampling library(s) in an open, non-DRM format, releasing for free' were possible...
Then again, even with good quality samples alone, if the sampling format was crappy, I guess we'd be seeing a lot of Kontakt conversion conversations
) So there's obviously more to it than just that. I'll leave that to the people who've actually used it to answer (I'm afraid I haven't. This might be a good topic for KVR...anyone brave enough?).
AnthonyCFox - Not necessarily. One has to keep innovating (even if just to satisfy investors). If they stop innovating, they'll lose their place as market leader. Of course, that depends on the difference between the spec sheet and ground reality.
falktx - Your DRM point is logical. But the market today (AFAIU) is essentially flooded with DRM'd, proprietary sample formats. Then what makes Kontakt the most popular?
NilsGey wrote:The sample authors had a choice. Sfz is well known but still the authors decide to use Kontakt, without needing the DRM, encryption and other stuff that might be indeed found in Kontakt only and not in sfz.
I'd wager that reasons would differ from author to author. Firstly, there's the scripting, if the question is "why Kontakt instead of SFZ
?" (as opposed to "instead of all other market formats."). If they don't need a lot of its features, then it might be it's popularity. And do keep in mind that the ethical and practical benefits of open formats aren't that widely known, and maybe some are aware of them and yet want to keep their libraries accessible with a popular sampler. 'Name' might be another issue. NI is a big name, Kontakt is a giant, and they are likely to stay and be supported. SFZ on the other hand doesn't support scripting, and the sample players, albeit free, are made by small-name companies and people - no assurance of whether they'll stay for the long run or not.
tux99 - How big is the difference in sound between two sampler engines? As big as between SSO and VSL? :\ Your point is likely valid, but users need better samples first before they start nitpicking about sampler engines.
tux99 wrote:There are plenty good samples out there in generic open formats such as wav or AKAI that can be used to make great sounds
Please, show us a few great orchestral samples that are as good as VSL in those formats. :\
PS - I am elated that this is being discussed, particularly with solutions and plans of action setting the tone rather than despondence.
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Newbie composer, somewhat-experienced classical guitarist.
Largely known as HisaoNakai/contrapunctus on IRC and other places.