G2500 virtual ARP synthesizer

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davephillips
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G2500 virtual ARP synthesizer

Postby davephillips » Sat Mar 09, 2019 1:35 pm

This:

http://niclasen.name/G2500/G2500.html

The details can be found on the site. Yes, it's priced at 100 Euros ($112US), and yes, it's a standalone application, there's no version in any plugin format.

I like it, it's another workout on a very cool modular for me. Just what I need. :)

Best,

dp

jonetsu
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Re: G2500 virtual ARP synthesizer

Postby jonetsu » Sat Mar 09, 2019 3:24 pm

Apart from the hardware look, I'd say that Bazille has a way lot more to offer on the modular front.

Nevertheless a bit strange to make a stand-alone synth app in 2019 that's not a VST.

Cheers.

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Geomol
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Re: G2500 virtual ARP synthesizer

Postby Geomol » Sun Mar 10, 2019 12:19 pm

jonetsu wrote:Nevertheless a bit strange to make a stand-alone synth app in 2019 that's not a VST.

VST2 or VST3?

Oh, and now we're at it, why not also make a plugin for those, that prefer AU? And AAX/RTAS? And ...
And then there is the 32/64-bit issue. Should I create versions for both?

A short list of the most common plugin formats:
http://support.pluginboutique.com/knowl ... au-aax-etc

Most dial knobs found in G2500 Virtual Analog handle 32-bit floating point values between 0.0 and 1.0, so about 30-bit information giving more than a billion possible positions for each knob. If you put all the modules with most knobs in G2500, you have 2-300 different controllers.

MIDI can't handle this. Some of the different plugin formats might. I don't know, as I havent researched it (yet).

What is the alternative, if you wanna control G2500 to its fullest?

A new open (non proprietary) communication scheme for musical instruments?
(I see talks about MIDI 2 this spring. Is that the answer?)
Would/should I use my precious time trying to please people asking for this and that plugin format, or should I use time to create the "correct" solution?

jonetsu
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Re: G2500 virtual ARP synthesizer

Postby jonetsu » Sun Mar 10, 2019 2:46 pm

Geomol wrote: Oh, and now we're at it, why not also make a plugin for those, that prefer AU? And AAX/RTAS? And ... And then there is the 32/64-bit issue. Should I create versions for both?

A short list of the most common plugin formats:

Well, all commercial plugins have no problem in supporting VST2, VST3, Mac's AU and ProTools' AAX. It's business as usual. Many still offers 32-bit versions although that should disappear.

Geomol wrote:Most dial knobs found in G2500 Virtual Analog handle 32-bit floating point values between 0.0 and 1.0, so about 30-bit information giving more than a billion possible positions for each knob. If you put all the modules with most knobs in G2500, you have 2-300 different controllers. MIDI can't handle this. Some of the different plugin formats might. I don't know, as I havent researched it (yet). What is the alternative, if you wanna control G2500 to its fullest?

Now this is interesting. Never thought about that. So all VST softsynth parameter ranges are severely limited when compared to a full 32-bit range. It does make sense when considering MIDI.

Geomol wrote:Would/should I use my precious time trying to please people asking for this and that plugin format, or should I use time to create the "correct" solution?

It's certainly a different approach, much like playing a real instrument and recording it using microphones. In this case if I understood correctly the G2500 is played like an instrument, has no link to a DAW, possibly cannot be sequenced by a DAW, and is recorded by tapping the audio output into a DAW.

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Geomol
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Re: G2500 virtual ARP synthesizer

Postby Geomol » Sun Mar 10, 2019 3:38 pm

jonetsu wrote:Well, all commercial plugins have no problem in supporting VST2, VST3, Mac's AU and ProTools' AAX.

G2500 is not a plugin. You (and others) complain, it is not a plugin, if I read you correctly.
It is something like this:

I produce a sailing boat, and you complain it is not a train.

I made G2500 in the first place for myself, because I wanted and needed it. As I showed it to others, they suggested, I made it public, so I did.

jonetsu wrote:It's certainly a different approach, much like playing a real instrument and recording it using microphones. In this case if I understood correctly the G2500 is played like an instrument, has no link to a DAW, possibly cannot be sequenced by a DAW, and is recorded by tapping the audio output into a DAW.

You then didn't understood it correctly, I'm sorry.

I mainly use G2500 under Mac OS X together with my DAW, Ableton Live. Now, read on, as I will target Linux in the following.

Under macos, I can send MIDI messages from my DAW to G2500 using the IAC Driver, as stated on the homepage, G2500 Virtual Analog:

    * The G2500 is easily controlled from e.g. a software DAW using the IAC Driver found in the MacOS "Audio MIDI Setup"
To get the audio from G2500 back into the DAW, I use a software audio device known as "Soundflower for Mac", also stated on the homepage:

    * Audio is easily sent to e.g. a software DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) using software such as "Soundflower for Mac"
Under Linux, you get the same functionality in one software package known as JACK, and G2500 has support for JACK under Linux. I will update the manual (and probably homepage) with this info. Under Linux, when G2500 launch, it will try to connect to a JACK server. If JACK is not found, it will fall back to using ALSA for MIDI interface and what you choose for audio. As G2500 uses SDL, you can select audio driver with the SDL_AUDIODRIVER env variable. Info:

https://wiki.libsdl.org/FAQUsingSDL#How ... _driver.3F

So if you use JACK, it is easy under Linux to connect G2500 with your DAW or other audio equipment, and also whatever MIDI equipment, you have.

I hope, this answers questions.

jonetsu
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Re: G2500 virtual ARP synthesizer

Postby jonetsu » Sun Mar 10, 2019 5:16 pm

jonetsu wrote:It's certainly a different approach, [....] and is recorded by tapping the audio output into a DAW.

Geomol wrote:You then didn't understood it correctly, I'm sorry. Under Linux, you get the same functionality in one software package known as JACK, and G2500 has support for JACK under Linux. [...] So if you use JACK, it is easy under Linux to connect G2500 with your DAW or other audio equipment, and also whatever MIDI equipment, you have.

That's what I call tapping the audio output into a DAW.

Geomol wrote: in one software package known as JACK

I once asked Paul about the two jackd packages that are still available to this date and are still installed in most distros if not all. jackd and jackd2. It was not that clear though, it seems that development is going on with jackd and not jackd2. Not sure though.

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Geomol
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Re: G2500 virtual ARP synthesizer

Postby Geomol » Sun Mar 10, 2019 7:58 pm

jonetsu wrote:
Geomol wrote:Most dial knobs found in G2500 Virtual Analog handle 32-bit floating point values between 0.0 and 1.0, so about 30-bit information giving more than a billion possible positions for each knob.

Now this is interesting. Never thought about that. So all VST softsynth parameter ranges are severely limited when compared to a full 32-bit range.

In computer science and numerical analysis, we use unit of least precision (ULP) to count the spacing between two floating point numbers.

The following is part of a C program to show the ULPs between 0.0 and 1.0 for 32-bit floats:

Code: Select all

float lo = 0.0f;
float hi = 1.0f;
printf ("ulps 0.0 1.0 = %d\n", *(int*) &hi - *(int*) &lo);
printf ("0.0f : %X\n", *(unsigned int*) &lo);
printf ("1.0f : %X\n", *(unsigned int*) &hi);

The output is this:

Code: Select all

ulps 0.0 1.0 = 1065353216
0.0f : 0
1.0f : 3F800000

Hex 3F800000 equals 1065353216.

So we have 1,065,353,216 ULPs (or possible different values) between 32-bit 0.0 and 1.0, a little more than one billion.
2^30 equals 1,073,741,824
32-bit 0.0 to 1.0 is almost 30 bit of information.

When developing G2500, I considered 64-bit values to create a situation as close to the real world as possible, but I ended up using 32-bit floats, which I assume is good enough for most or all cases. I would love to be proven wrong.

I see some discussion about Audio Units / VST parameters like this: https://forum.juce.com/t/audio-units-vs ... tion/13204

I haven't really dug into it yet - just scratched the surface regarding plugins.

Prototyping of MIDI 2.0 was announced on this years NAMM: https://yamahamusicians.com/namm-2019-m ... announced/
That might influence any future communication between music hardware and software, plugins and DAWs.

glowrak guy
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Re: G2500 virtual ARP synthesizer

Postby glowrak guy » Sun Mar 10, 2019 10:50 pm

That's all well and good, but it really comes down to just this:

Does Britney Spears use it?












:wink:


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