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Any MetaSynth or XX users out there?

VST, AU, etc. plug-in Virtual Instruments discussion

Moderator: Moderators (Main)

imprint
KVRist
 
40 posts since 2 Sep, 2011

Postby imprint; Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:26 am Any MetaSynth or XX users out there?

I've been given an opportunity to get Metasynth at a relatively very low entry price. If you had to peg my style, it would be best described as ambient/rock electronic music.

I've been playing with the demo along with their companion compositional tool Xx. It would be about $249 for the bundle - not cheap but that's a huge discount.

I did this last fall but passed...really didn't feel I could evaluate it in a short time. Now I have a limited window again...
still find it massively interesting but not terribly intuitive...feels like you could spend six months with it and still not scratch the surface. BUt its capable of some astounding sound exploration.

So any feedback would be quite helpful since I have a limited amount of time to make my decision.
lofty
KVRist
 
117 posts since 13 Nov, 2011

Postby lofty; Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:48 am

all of the U&I software is wonderful and capable of amazing results. Even at full price I thought it was very well worth the $. I think it works best to consider it all as a suite - the graphics and animation software is wonderful fun to integrate with sounds too

I think it's refreshing to be able to take a change of scene of working environment and the interfaces are fairly easy to navigate around after a little exploring. The quality of the results is reason enough though - really would be almost impossible anywhere else to create the same content anywhere else.

I do enjoy working on whole projects within U&I (I create audio-visual abstract pieces for playback within a rave context and post-genre beats for midtempo dancing) but I struggle sometimes with the workflow when trying to integrate into Live or Logic. In my ideal world, U&I would re-wire into a more conventional sequencing environment. I am somewhat adjusted to the workflow of Logic and happily set up a track with a film clip running and can then compose around that and at the moment I generally cut & paste audio from Metasynth / Logic backwards and forwards but it's quite a faff if I'm trying to tweak sections to sit well together. I love the sorts of sounds U-he Zebra and Logic Sculpture / Kontakt can make and am reluctant to let them go but I sometimes get stuck trying to then open up another environment and shape sounds that fit in Metasynth or vice versa. Depending on the sort of music you want to try and create, you might find that something like Camel Alchemy fits easier into your workflow and is capable of some similar sounds with the additive and spectral synthesis options.

I hear that more and more producers are moving over to MetaSynth for full audio production though - people like Jackson & his Computer Band interviewed as saying that he's given up all of his plug-ins and can do all that he could ever want inside U&I.

At the price you've been offered and if you can stretch to the amount then I'm certain it's not a purchase you'd regret.
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aMUSEd
KVRAF
 
19655 posts since 14 Sep, 2002, from In teh net

Postby aMUSEd; Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:59 am

XX was a bit disappointing for me as I thought it would support microtunings seeing as the sequencer in Metasynth itself does. I thought wrongly it was Metasynth's sequencers "big brother" but in this respect it is more limited. Hopefully that will come at some point soonish. On the other hand it does have some useful algorithmic tools and plays with plugins too which is useful.
imprint
KVRist
 
40 posts since 2 Sep, 2011

Postby imprint; Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:06 pm

Speaking of tuning, is there any way to pull more scales into Xx? It's missing several basic modes like Dorian, Locrian, Phrygian, etc....also the demo seems to crash a lot.
Spitfire31
KVRAF
 
1854 posts since 18 May, 2003, from Sweden

Postby Spitfire31; Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:56 pm

imprint wrote:...also the demo [of Xx] seems to crash a lot.

System specs, please?

/Joachim
If it were easy, anybody could do it!
imprint
KVRist
 
40 posts since 2 Sep, 2011

Postby imprint; Sun Feb 24, 2013 9:04 pm

Mac Mini Server, Corei7 4gb RAM OSX Mountain Lion

Certain AU modules such as U-he Podolski crash when launched (there is a note on this issue with random AU on the U&! FAQ pages and should note that U-he's Diva does not seem to have the same problem.)

Moreover, using the compositional algorithm tools with any AU on one or more of the tracks seems to trigger a crash as well.
Spitfire31
KVRAF
 
1854 posts since 18 May, 2003, from Sweden

Postby Spitfire31; Sun Feb 24, 2013 9:16 pm

Thanks for the info, Imprint!

I've just downloaded the Xx demo and will start exploring it in the coming weeks, as time permits, on a MB Pro Early 2011 (i7 2.2), 16 GB RAM and OS 10.6.8.

I also noted in the Xx readme that it supports a maximum of 48 AUs and needs Carbon GUIs. I have 330 AUs in my folder, so we'll see what happens… ;-)

/Joachim
If it were easy, anybody could do it!
pdxindy
KVRAF
 
8666 posts since 2 Feb, 2005, from in the wilds

Postby pdxindy; Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:19 am

You gotta decide if it is for you... Every 18 months or so I think, oh, Metasynth looks so cool... then I try it out and come back to Live, Alchemy and my other synths and tools... :hihi:
lnikj
KVRist
 
213 posts since 23 May, 2005

Postby lnikj; Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:24 am

Related I think to the Carbon issue:

I still have some old NI plugs: B4, Elektrik/Acoustic Piano, Pro-53 (yay!!) and every time I fire up the XX demo it seems to scan these and flag them up with a warning message about being short on memory. I have seen this before - the first time a new Live 9 beta is installed and scans the plugin folders.

Live 9 beta only does it the once though, XX does it every time.
lnikj
KVRist
 
213 posts since 23 May, 2005

Postby lnikj; Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:29 am

pdxindy wrote:You gotta decide if it is for you... Every 18 months or so I think, oh, Metasynth looks so cool... then I try it out and come back to Live, Alchemy and my other synths and tools... :hihi:


Me too. It is always the workflow issues that have me doubting, and also the worry that I don't have the time for something so vast .... this time I think I might just go for it though (but I am unconvinced about XX).
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aMUSEd
KVRAF
 
19655 posts since 14 Sep, 2002, from In teh net

Postby aMUSEd; Mon Feb 25, 2013 1:31 am

The most irritating limitation is the lack of an undo history. But you can get some great effects with it.
gabebrunogarza1021
Banned

Postby gabebrunogarza1021; Mon Feb 25, 2013 6:51 am

imprint wrote:Speaking of tuning, is there any way to pull more scales into Xx? It's missing several basic modes like Dorian, Locrian, Phrygian, etc....also the demo seems to crash a lot.


Unless I'm missing something here, why wouldn't you just choose Custom Scale and create your own scales? :D
Image
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Numanoid
KVRAF
 
8204 posts since 20 Jan, 2008, from Down on the farm

Postby Numanoid; Mon Feb 25, 2013 7:38 am

imprint wrote:So any feedback would be quite helpful since I have a limited amount of time to make my decision.

If you can forward $599 to me, I'll be happy to help you check it out :D
Instant Automatic Instamatic
imprint
KVRist
 
40 posts since 2 Sep, 2011

Postby imprint; Mon Feb 25, 2013 9:51 am

gabebrunogarza1021 wrote:
imprint wrote:Speaking of tuning, is there any way to pull more scales into Xx? It's missing several basic modes like Dorian, Locrian, Phrygian, etc....also the demo seems to crash a lot.


Unless I'm missing something here, why wouldn't you just choose Custom Scale and create your own scales? :D
Image


Just wondered if there was a way to shortcut it...I like using different modes and would rather not have to key them in individually.
espiegel123
KVRist
 
68 posts since 12 Aug, 2009

Postby espiegel123; Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:30 am

imprint wrote:Mac Mini Server, Corei7 4gb RAM OSX Mountain Lion

Certain AU modules such as U-he Podolski crash when launched (there is a note on this issue with random AU on the U&! FAQ pages and should note that U-he's Diva does not seem to have the same problem.)

Moreover, using the compositional algorithm tools with any AU on one or more of the tracks seems to trigger a crash as well.


Try setting the MIDI delay in the prefs to 0. On faster machines that seems to solve many problems. Unfortunately, AU-compatibility is a tricky thing. What some people do, is turn off AUs in Xx and use MIDI IAC to communicate to AUs running in a host if you need to use AUs in Xx.

Best,

Edward
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