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alternative to band in a box

Plug-in hosts and other software applications discussion

Moderator: Moderators (Main)

KVRist
 
121 posts since 6 Sep, 2003, from essen germany

Postby FunkyBunch; Tue Jul 14, 2009 9:03 am alternative to band in a box

i'm looking for a arranger software (if possible osx compatible) like band in a box, but with a comfortable user interface and REALLY! good styles.

magic gargeband sounds nice and is easy to use, but i'm missing much functions and it got only a few styles.

the band in a box styles sounds like an 80's arranger keyboard for kids :(
KVRAF
 
1690 posts since 29 Sep, 2005

Postby dsan@mail.com; Tue Jul 14, 2009 11:10 am

FunkyBunch wrote:i'm looking for a arranger software (if possible osx compatible) like band in a box, but with a comfortable user interface and REALLY! good styles.

magic gargeband sounds nice and is easy to use, but i'm missing much functions and it got only a few styles.

the band in a box styles sounds like an 80's arranger keyboard for kids :(


Hi Funky,
I am sorry you seem disappointed with BIAB. I have been using this product for years and find, for what it is designed to do, inspirational and exceptional.

There are few similar products: Jammer Pro v6 by Soundtrek and JMT Orchestrator. I use these also. Some others are still avialable such as One Man Band, which is very similar to BIAB as far as I can tell. I do not use this product.

I do not mean to sound controversial but I think you have not realized BIAB's full potential. If you are disatisfied with the sound coming from the product, I would first look at the midi device(s) you are using. Midi is, afterall, midi and has never sounded like a professionally produced CD, without editing and sound enhancement in a sequencer program such as Sonar or Logic, et. al. BIAB DOES have the ability to host DXi synths, which do sound much better than midi and have a much larger palette of instruments which do sound more like those on a professionally produced CD. (I am hopeful that someday it will host VSTi's)(Since I do not use this softwar on Mac I am not sure how it hosts soft-synths; AU or VST).

If your complaint is not the sound of midi but rather the styles that BIAB arranges, then this product offers a plethora of available add-on styles as well as the ability to create your own styles. The other programs I mentioned allow style creation too, although Orchestrator has just a bit more learning curve to be able to do so (however, I believe it does a great job when making styles). There are some third party developers that produce BIAB styles files as well (Bob "Notes" Norton is one of the best!). Many of the PG Music styles are produced based on current songs. I find it hard to believe one cannot find inspiration in the style files out there, but as I said, one can always make their own styles. This is actually very fun and simple in BIAB.

I'm not sure what "functions" you are looking for. BIAB is a great arranger; it is not a DAW. But it has some really great features to it. Personally I think Peter Gannon has done a marvelous job with this software; at times I think he has done way too much. I believe his vision is to create software that offers the musician a simple, yet effective, way for making music.

I do not know how long you have been using BIAB and if it is just a short time, I encourage you give it another try and learn all the nuances of the program. I do not mean to sound like it is the "do all, end all" in music software; however, BIAB is a valuable tool in my arsenal of creative software.

Check out the programs I mentioned. I hope you will like them.

With kind regards,
dsan
KVRist
 
121 posts since 6 Sep, 2003, from essen germany

Postby FunkyBunch; Tue Jul 14, 2009 11:18 am

the sound is ok when i use vst's or external midi equipment.

i'll use biab for fast composing and inspiration. there are a lot of styles but 90% sounds very bad!!!
KVRAF
 
1690 posts since 29 Sep, 2005

Postby dsan@mail.com; Tue Jul 14, 2009 11:59 am

FunkyBunch wrote:the sound is ok when i use vst's or external midi equipment.

i'll use biab for fast composing and inspiration. there are a lot of styles but 90% sounds very bad!!!


I think I now understand better what you mean by "sounds very bad". Sometimes there is no "richness" or "life" to the music. Sometimes I just do not like the style.

To get that "life" into the music requires manipulation of the midi file in a DAW, adding midi CC to affect things like how soft or loud a passage or note should play (expression, CC 11), or should there be some modulation (CC 1) in this area, or maybe alter velocities so it does not sound monotonous when all velocities are at the same level, etc.

Unfortunately most BIAB styles do not have midi CC imbedded in the style. The program will however permit this. I have created several files that incorporate midi CC to give some life to the style. Mod wheel is one of my favorites to add in the stlye. Have you tried to make styles?

Aside from Garageband for the MAC I'm unaware of any of these arrangers that offer what I think you are looking for. To get that "sound" you need to look at loops. Problem is these are wave or aiff files and much more difficult to edit and then you are limited to the "instrument" they were created by. If you plan to use loops you need more of a DAW than an arranger, although Garageband will act somewhat as both.

Best of Luck!
dsan
KVRAF
 
4316 posts since 4 Dec, 2004

Postby LawrenceF; Tue Jul 14, 2009 6:25 pm

alternative to band in a box


Band In A Bag? :lol:

Sequel, GarageBand?
KVRist
 
121 posts since 6 Sep, 2003, from essen germany

Postby FunkyBunch; Wed Jul 15, 2009 12:19 am

i've visited the biab homepage for more informations.
is it true that the windows version got more functions than the mac version?????
KVRist
 
114 posts since 23 May, 2004, from Denmark

Postby tombuur; Wed Jul 15, 2009 1:26 am

I have three of the major arranger tools:

Onyx Arranger (JMT Orchestrator). Stay away from this. It does have some advantages, but there is no support. They haven't updated for years and only respond to emails, if you want to buy something. Not if you have a problem.

Band in a Box. I hate it, but still use it sometimes because it has the largest selection of styles. The interface is ugly and clunky and is based on the old Windows 3.1 from years ago. Very non-intuitive. Much of the tweaking has to be done by entering numbers, and even here they are not conistant in how things are done. As for the music it produces it reveals that the man behind is a jazz musician, so if rock is your game it may not have the punch you prefer. Also it doesn't use the traditional verse, prechorus, chorus, bridge arrangement you know from pop/rock. A chorus in BiaB includes both verse and "chorus", so the whole arrangement setup puts me off... I could go on like this.

Jammer Pro is the one I like best. It works like a true windows program. You can dive deep down and make changes to how the instruments play, like how to make transitions between chords etc. It also has a plugin which enables you to let it play through your DAW which you then can set up with the instruments you like. What I don't like about jammer is that the styles that come with it are very limited (even though I got all of them). Jammer splits up the styles in intros, groove, ending. Fine enough for getting more control. BiaB keeps this together, so in practice you can multiply a BiaB style with 4-5 before you compare the number you get with what Jammer gives you.
KVRAF
 
2891 posts since 26 Jul, 2005, from dun unda
    

Postby MaliceX; Wed Jul 15, 2009 1:36 am

The alternative: http://www.1manband.nl/

...though it's designed to simulate arranger keyboard-type functions, it does come with an arranger of sorts...
KVRer
 
1 post since 16 Oct, 2009

Postby Krio88; Fri Oct 16, 2009 2:47 am

There is a freeware called band2play. It's simple but it's free :) So perfect for little and easy playbacks:

http://www.pc4pda.com
KVRAF
 
9144 posts since 11 Aug, 2008, from Alto Icon

Postby Aloysius; Fri Oct 16, 2009 3:10 am

Image
KVRist
 
121 posts since 6 Nov, 2003

Postby SharksFin; Fri Oct 16, 2009 3:15 am

Krio88 wrote:There is a freeware called band2play. It's simple but it's free :) So perfect for little and easy playbacks:

http://www.pc4pda.com


constant crashes
KVRAF
 
9025 posts since 6 Apr, 2003

Postby grymmjack; Mon Oct 19, 2009 6:04 pm

Aloysius wrote:Image


eek
KVRAF
 
11955 posts since 22 Nov, 2004, from west of east

Postby eduardo_b; Mon Oct 19, 2009 7:38 pm

grymmjack wrote:eek
Too tasteful. Holy shite is much closer to my reaction. :scared:
We escape the trap of our own subjectivity by
perceiving neither black nor white but shades of grey
KVRAF
 
3591 posts since 9 Apr, 2003, from NE Ohio, USA

Postby dougsyo; Mon Oct 19, 2009 7:40 pm

FunkyBunch wrote:i've visited the biab homepage for more informations.
is it true that the windows version got more functions than the mac version?????

This is true, although they're a lot closer than they were in previous versions.

Doug
Logic is a pretty flower that smells bad - Spock, in "I, Mudd"

For a good time click http://www.belindabedekovic.com/video_fl_en.htm
User avatar
KVRAF
 
9691 posts since 13 Nov, 2006, from in Uranus, playin' lollipop
 

Postby debra1rlo; Mon Oct 19, 2009 7:43 pm

Aloysius wrote:Image

:hail:
marmoset there'd be days like this, there'd be days like this, my marmoset
I'm a dumb c**t
so don't try this at home
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