Strings Dream 2.0 VST2 x64 for Windows released as free/donationware

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HunterKiller
KVRAF
2124 posts since 10 Mar, 2006

Post Sun Aug 04, 2019 9:37 pm

liqih wrote:
Sat Aug 03, 2019 6:38 am
I'm trying just that but... have you ever tried a real Eminent Solina straight in the mixer? The sounds you hear on Jarre's records have been heavily processed, not just the simple sound of the machine, but surely you know that already.
Uhhh... it depends... heavily.

For example Oxygene 2 and Equinoxe 4 use the Eminent Strings as they are, with very slight eq, to smooth things out for the first track, and to kill the fundamental a little in the second one.

There's a lot reverb and some delay on the first, and some reverb and a lot of delay on the second.
And if you compare those strings to the Eminent 310's output, it's very close to how the organ sounds. Both tracks showcase the strings in the higher octaves.

At the beginning Oxygene 3 has another demonstration of the strings in their higher octaves.
Equinoxe 1 is another example of clean string use, across the whole octave range, but the mix obscures them somewhat.

Most of the other tracks either put the strings in the background, or pass them through the Small Stone -> EQ -> Delay, which changes them significantly.

There are clean sources of the Eminent online, to check the sound out for yourself.
"The educated person is one who knows how to find out what he does not know" - George Simmel
“It's what you learn after you know it all that counts.” - John Wooden

liqih
DASH Guy
7425 posts since 20 Sep, 2001

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5h available

Post Mon Aug 05, 2019 5:56 am

I hear you HK, with "heavily" I mean also the pre-amp and and mixer console stages.
At minimum in Jarre's records you have:
solina >>> some kind of analogue amplifier >>> ("speaker to mike" stage ? Or direct to console) >>>analogue mixer eq >>> mastering to record.
Plus into some of the links above add reverb or EQ or both, and speaking most probably some high-end effects with their own character and boosting.

I don't mean this as a excuse to make my SDS cheap sounding . As Stringzy said you need to have a rich tone in the beginning to have good result at the end. What I mean is a that a fair comparison of SDS to real solina must include a similar chain of plugins to the audio output.

So HK if you have time please try SDS with some other good plugins stage, like an Amp sim and channel strip EQ, and let me know where do you think I should improve the source sound. Thanks
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liqih
DASH Guy
7425 posts since 20 Sep, 2001

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5h available

Post Mon Aug 05, 2019 6:28 am

Could this helps?

With which references the Strings Dream Synthesizer started.


1) I had a real Eminent Solina available (not the next ARP one)
2) I took dry samples from it with Ensemble off to see waveshape,
to analyze spectrum of Stop filters (Brass, Viols etc..)
3) I read the schematic of the Eminent Ensemble and approximate that circuitry with DSP modules
to build the SDS chorus.
4) I had raw samples of another strings machine by Crumar.
5) I played the Solina, the Elka Raphsody and other Farfisa organs
for hours to get the feeling of those sounds.

Elka Raphsody sounded thinner that the Solina, for the simpler filters and simpler chorus it had.

[Note that Wright of Pink Floyd said that he often doubled the ARP Solina low notes
with a MOOG to make the sound fatter. So for him the ARP Solina was not fat enough.
On the other hand Tangerine Dream used the Elka Raphsody straight in a guitar fx phase and to an amp,
as apparently they where interested in a light swirling layer for their drone.]


#SDS can't do everything but can do many things, it aims to be a good source to build those kind of sounds.
#SDS can do a few things that old string machines cannot do, like modulating the wave shape.
#SDS can do the main feature of string machines:
all voices are phase locked due to the divided-down technology emulation.
#The chorus of SDS is a close emulation of Eminent Solina ensemble fx.
#The SDS Phaser FX is quite good as digital emulation.
#The SDS Reverb FX should be switched off for serious mixing when you use external pre-amp and and eq plugins.
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NUSofting : Peti Modelonia Sinnah

liqih
DASH Guy
7425 posts since 20 Sep, 2001

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5h available

Post Mon Aug 05, 2019 10:17 am

Update beta5m:

- New scaling for the "filters per note" of Violins voice to avoid too much low frequencies beating,
when playing complex chords.

- Reduced the range of some Reverb controls. Especially "Spring"

https://www.kvraudio.com/product/string ... -nusofting
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NUSofting : Peti Modelonia Sinnah

Lotuz2019
KVRian
511 posts since 26 Apr, 2019 from Netherlands

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5h available

Post Mon Aug 05, 2019 11:27 am

liqih wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 10:17 am

- New scaling for the "filters per note" of Violins voice to avoid too much low frequencies beating,
when playing complex chords.
Thanks Luigi. I can still hear it clearly, even on basic chords like F3/G#3/C4, but I'm probably much too focused on it at the moment.
liqih wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 10:17 am

- Reduced the range of some Reverb controls. Especially "Spring"
The Reverb doesn't seem to work properly anymore. When Spring is set to 0, the Size functions correctly. When I turn up Spring, I don't hear the typical Spring effect, instead I hear it turns down the Size.

liqih
DASH Guy
7425 posts since 20 Sep, 2001

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5m August 6th

Post Mon Aug 05, 2019 2:48 pm

Thanks I will double check the Reverb
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NUSofting : Peti Modelonia Sinnah

HunterKiller
KVRAF
2124 posts since 10 Mar, 2006

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5h available

Post Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:07 am

liqih wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 5:56 am
I hear you HK, with "heavily" I mean also the pre-amp and and mixer console stages.
At minimum in Jarre's records you have:
solina >>> some kind of analogue amplifier >>> ("speaker to mike" stage ? Or direct to console) >>>analogue mixer eq >>> mastering to record.
Plus into some of the links above add reverb or EQ or both, and speaking most probably some high-end effects with their own character and boosting.

I don't mean this as a excuse to make my SDS cheap sounding . As Stringzy said you need to have a rich tone in the beginning to have good result at the end. What I mean is a that a fair comparison of SDS to real solina must include a similar chain of plugins to the audio output.

So HK if you have time please try SDS with some other good plugins stage, like an Amp sim and channel strip EQ, and let me know where do you think I should improve the source sound. Thanks
With the Eminent, it was E310 direct line out to MCI JH400 console, then to tape.
He used relatively little effects processing, slight EQ, reverb, tape delay. And copious phasing and flanging. Nothing else in the early albums.

"Plus into some of the links above add reverb or EQ or both, and speaking most probably some high-end effects with their own character and boosting."

Not really high end, he wasn't super rich in the beginning. But that changed after Oxygene.
There are pages listing his equipment, it's not top end stuff, aside from the synths.

Also, bear in mind, the ARP Solina String has quite a bit more rough and ... "unrefined" sound to it, compared to the E310. Because the organ had more stuff going on under the hood. That's why everyone's software emulations always leave a lot to be desired. It's a bit like everyone constantly emulating and re-emulating the MiniMoog and the Hammand organ.

But I wound't stress mate. You're doing well.

In no particular order the current software top 3 contenders are:
1. Loomer String
2. The Interruptor Night Flight
3. Eminent-V 310 Strings Ensemble MkII (in the Native Instruments Reaktor User Library)

Check them out, and if you can outdo them, you're set.
Out of the box they don't sound precisely like an ARP or an Eminent, but all three can be set to do that. For some reason, no one quite nailed the chorus settings. But I did for all 3 of them.

The only thing that's really missing on all 3 of them, is that slight (intelligent) dulling of the keys, down the keyboard. Just that alone kills the rawness of the ARP Solina, and makes things sound more orchestral like the Eminent, which is what makes it conducive to a wider variety of genres.

When Eminent sold the Solina technology to ARP, they ARP guys wanted it to be portable, not as heavy, and they were strapped for cash, so the Solina String Ensemble cut corners, and to my ears, sounds like an unfinished Eminent sound (which it actually is).
"The educated person is one who knows how to find out what he does not know" - George Simmel
“It's what you learn after you know it all that counts.” - John Wooden

Lotuz2019
KVRian
511 posts since 26 Apr, 2019 from Netherlands

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5h available

Post Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:05 am

HunterKiller wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:07 am
For some reason, no one quite nailed the chorus settings.
Not sure how spot on these are, but I really like the Solina presets of D16 Syntorus. The SDS Ensemble is a bit less expressive, but sounds nice as well. Variety is good. :)
HunterKiller wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:07 am
The only thing that's really missing on all 3 of them, is that slight (intelligent) dulling of the keys, down the keyboard. Just that alone kills the rawness of the ARP Solina, and makes things sound more orchestral like the Eminent, which is what makes it conducive to a wider variety of genres.
As long as you can switch it on and off, because sometimes you do want that rawness, I'm for adding this 'dulling' feature. 8)

svart
KVRist
50 posts since 20 Dec, 2014 from up north

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5m August 6th

Post Tue Aug 06, 2019 12:49 pm

Sounds very nice. Buying for sure :)
But: the C. Bass and Cello sounds very loud compared to the other voices? At low volume settings it's comparatively very high, and gets somewhat distorted half way. Should there be a bigger "volume spectrum" from low volume settings towards a higher?
What about midi learn and sustain pedal?
8)

liqih
DASH Guy
7425 posts since 20 Sep, 2001

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5m August 6th

Post Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:41 pm

svart wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 12:49 pm
Sounds very nice. Buying for sure :)
But: the C. Bass and Cello sounds very loud compared to the other voices? At low volume settings it's comparatively very high, and gets somewhat distorted half way. Should there be a bigger "volume spectrum" from low volume settings towards a higher?
What about midi learn and sustain pedal?
8)
Hi svart, thanks, sustain pedal! Yes, I will add it, MIDI Learn no, I set fixed CC01 (Modwheel) to Shaper knob and CC07 to master volume, and others on request.

I will scale the the C. Bass and Cello sounds lower. I usually prefer the highs to be not to loud.

###
BTW, to everybody, I'm improving the "fatness" of oscillators, so expect bigger sound with next beta
http://nusofting.com
NUSofting : Peti Modelonia Sinnah

Stringzy
Banned
343 posts since 3 May, 2019

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5m August 6th

Post Wed Aug 07, 2019 12:03 am

"improving the fatness" yes, remove that granny's spinach and lettuce diet for SDS.

feed it with a fine lamb steak, crisp french fries and tabasco. double belly with a cold Grolsch, three pints. repeat.

HunterKiller
KVRAF
2124 posts since 10 Mar, 2006

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5h available

Post Wed Aug 07, 2019 12:35 am

Lotuz2019 wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:05 am
HunterKiller wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:07 am
For some reason, no one quite nailed the chorus settings.
Not sure how spot on these are, but I really like the Solina presets of D16 Syntorus. The SDS Ensemble is a bit less expressive, but sounds nice as well. Variety is good. :)
HunterKiller wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:07 am
The only thing that's really missing on all 3 of them, is that slight (intelligent) dulling of the keys, down the keyboard. Just that alone kills the rawness of the ARP Solina, and makes things sound more orchestral like the Eminent, which is what makes it conducive to a wider variety of genres.
As long as you can switch it on and off, because sometimes you do want that rawness, I'm for adding this 'dulling' feature. 8)
Of course. As SDS will be covering more than one machine. :)

As for the chorus, Chorus is everything. It's the heart of the thing. I've spent months trying to nail these things. And through all that, I've learned how it in itself is important in giving the overall character to a machine. Not all choruses are made equal.

It's a subtle thing to be sure, but it changes everything. It's the foundation, and unless it is level, the whole structure will lean. It's very easy to make something sound terrible, mediocre, very good... but to get it into that special zone of excellence where all of the variables line up, that's a true challenge.
"The educated person is one who knows how to find out what he does not know" - George Simmel
“It's what you learn after you know it all that counts.” - John Wooden

svart
KVRist
50 posts since 20 Dec, 2014 from up north

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5m August 6th

Post Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:44 am

liqih wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:41 pm
svart wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 12:49 pm
Sounds very nice. Buying for sure :)
But: the C. Bass and Cello sounds very loud compared to the other voices? At low volume settings it's comparatively very high, and gets somewhat distorted half way. Should there be a bigger "volume spectrum" from low volume settings towards a higher?
What about midi learn and sustain pedal?
8)
Hi svart, thanks, sustain pedal! Yes, I will add it, MIDI Learn no, I set fixed CC01 (Modwheel) to Shaper knob and CC07 to master volume, and others on request.

I will scale the the C. Bass and Cello sounds lower. I usually prefer the highs to be not to loud.

###
BTW, to everybody, I'm improving the "fatness" of oscillators, so expect bigger sound with next beta
Looking forward to it 👍🏼
Would like the switch between paraphonic and polyphonic to be assigned to a cc if possible :)

liqih
DASH Guy
7425 posts since 20 Sep, 2001

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5m August 6th

Post Fri Aug 09, 2019 5:08 am

Yes I can a CC for any parameter, just remember that the switch between paraphonic and polyphonic will always stop the note on sustain, since it changes from poly ADSR to mono ADSR.
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NUSofting : Peti Modelonia Sinnah

liqih
DASH Guy
7425 posts since 20 Sep, 2001

Re: Strings Dream Beta5 ready to download here: VST2 x64 for Windows, beta5m August 6th

Post Wed Aug 14, 2019 6:27 am

Update for next beta6a to be released in a week:
- upgraded anti-aliased oscillators
- improved volumes sliders range for easier gains control
- going to change how Reverb works, more news soon
- adding more CCs to parameters
- updated the old Silver skin, now included along the others.
silver_skin.png
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