Why you left VSTs?

Anything about hardware musical instruments.
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BONES
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9555 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Post Wed Feb 26, 2020 6:36 pm

foosnark wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 4:41 am
The piano-roll-and-VST-plugin workflow I gave up has no equivalent to:
Of course it does. You just need to concentrate on the result, not the process. Wavefolding, for example, is very common in VSTi, even though it usually sounds pretty terrible compared to other ways of creating distortion.
When I make music with modular I don't even think in terms of "notes." Complementary pitches certainly, consonant frequency ratios for modulation, etc. sure. I work a lot with drones and plenty of hands-on control (sometimes combined with simple sequences, but more often with algorithmic or generative sequences). It is a very different experience from drawing rectangles on a piano roll or recording keyboard noodling.
Not really. It sounds to me like what getting into modular did for you was to focus your attention on things you like to do, rather than things you cannot do in software. Having listened to your music a bit in the past, I certainly don't hear anything I think I'd have trouble reproducing ITB. i.e. There were no "how the hell did he get that sound!?!" moments.

In fact, the other night I was mucking about with Quanta and Straylight for a few hours and came up with something I think would probably fit in well with your stuff. It was a nice evening of distraction but at the end of it I didn't see any point in saving the project, it wasn't even worth considering as an intro to a song or a suture to put between songs. Which isn't to diss what you do, although personally I don't value it highly, just to point out that for a lot of us it is a very small part of the overall process we go through (hence my comment about "focus").
NOVAkILL 4.0 : Dell G7 17 (Core i7, 8GB RAM, Win10), UR44C, Cubase, DUNE, Thorn, TRK-01, Equator, Hive, Substance, Arcsyn, Aparillo, Phase Plant, Pigments, Trueno, Analog Keys, MicroMonsta, Uno, Skulpt, Craft 2.

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BONES
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9555 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Wed Feb 26, 2020 7:03 pm

jacqueslacouth wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 1:54 pm
I guess, at least in part, the reason for this is the frustration of not always knowing that they are going to continue to work after buying them (an in all fairness, the vast majority do continue to work fine)... it just tends to be a less and less inviting prospect to spend my money on.

On the other hand, whilst there are a few cases of needed repairs, my hardware instruments have continued to work without issue exactly as intended for decades.
Let me get this straight, you'd rather spend thousands on hardware and hundreds on repairs than take a minute risk that something you pay $100 (or less) for may or may not, at some undefinable point in the future, stop working?
...I guess I am a bit of a fossil and something of a luddite
You think?
Oh yes, I forgot to mention the never ending battle to keep things compatible with OS upgrades.
That is a battle you choose, it is not something I even notice. OTOH, flashing ROMs to update firmware in my hardware is always a terrifying prospect, given the very real chance of bricking the damned things. Of course, both things are easily avoided by choosing to stick with what you have. I keep using Orion and it was discontinued many years ago. I used it as my only music production environment for around 20 years, because it was so easy and cheap to keep it up to date with the latest improvements in technology, whereas the longest I used the same hardware sequencer was about 3 years because the only way to get the latest improvements in technology was to spend another $5000 every few years and hope your old stuff was still worth something on the used market. If I added it all up, I reckon I probably used to lose more money every year on hardware than I have spent in total on software over more than 20 years.
foosnark wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 5:33 pm
I discovered I really liked working with Eurorack because it's a very wide open, anything-goes sort of world compared to the relative restrictions of MIDI and VST instruments and the types of synthesis represented there.
Last year I added a Lyra-8, which is another awesome, hands-on instrument that is like nothing that exists in software.
And what exists in Eurorack to compare to VSTi like Aparillo or DUNE or Kontakt? It's easy to convince yourself you are getting more but much harder to actually prove it.
CapnLockheed wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 8:51 pm
I quit using hardware years ago because I got tired of not being allowed to re-sell it or having to pay exorbitant license transfer fees to do so. And hardware is just to easy to move around and setup. I need to get my exercize in.
Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!
The most expensive license transfer fee I have ever seen is $20. The most expensive software instrument I have ever bought was $100. The best price I have ever managed to get for a used hardware instrument was $200 less than I paid for it. Sometimes I've lost thousands. So if you can explain how losing between $200 and $1000 when you sell a hardware instrument is better than losing $20-$40 when you sell a software license, I might apologise for laughing at your pathetic justification for using hardware.
NOVAkILL 4.0 : Dell G7 17 (Core i7, 8GB RAM, Win10), UR44C, Cubase, DUNE, Thorn, TRK-01, Equator, Hive, Substance, Arcsyn, Aparillo, Phase Plant, Pigments, Trueno, Analog Keys, MicroMonsta, Uno, Skulpt, Craft 2.

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djanthonyw
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7166 posts since 20 Jul, 2004

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Wed Feb 26, 2020 7:21 pm

Because Logic doesn't use VSTs.
You are currently reading my signature.

revvy
KVRist
460 posts since 15 Feb, 2020

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Wed Feb 26, 2020 7:41 pm

I have only sold HW synths at a profit. Twice.

I have paid more than 100 for a soft synth and 20 for a transfer.

I prefer HW to SW for some things and SW to HW for others. Can't even see myself stop using VSTs/AUs or HW either.

Other posters may well have a different experience to me.

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BONES
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9555 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Wed Feb 26, 2020 9:13 pm

dellboy wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 5:51 am
If you live in a small flat with no available space then a laptop and VSTs along with a small controller is the only viable option. :(
I dunno, I live on a yacht and I've got five hardware synths plus a controller in my set-up.
Robmobius wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 6:08 am
I think HW sounds better than software overall.
You are wrong.
chk071 wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 6:09 am
Every now and then, I think about getting a piece of hardware. Pretty quickly, reality grasps myself again. :D Lack of space, cables, no multiple instances of the synth, bouncing, tedious programming, unless you buy a expensive hardware synth with a decent knob for function ratio... and, on some hardware synths you don't even have patch memory. On the plus side, there is the hands on factor, and probably also the fact that you will spend more time learning the machine inside out, because you paid a lot of money for it, and, it simply is more motivation to work on something tangible.
None of those negative factors need to be true. You can buy good hardware synths that aren't a whole lot more expensive than a good softsynth. IK's Uno is awesome, as is Modal's Craft Synth 2, and both of them are cheaper than VPS Avenger. Of course, neither of them are in the same league as Avenger but you don't buy them for the same reasons so that kind of comparison is pointless.
vurt wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:27 am
well so long as its acoustic or battery powered. my modular is shit without a plug. laptops however...
Most of my hardware can either run on batteries - Uno, Skulpt, Craft and Roli Blocks - or is USB powered - Ultranova and KeyStep (Roli, too). MicroMonsta and Analog Four are the only hardware synths I need power for.
lfm wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:18 pm
I prefer physical knobs and buttons - and the convenience of just one power button to sit down and play a bit. Just more accessible.
I'm sorry but that's just bullshit. The only power button I need to switch on is my laptop. Once it's on, so is everything else. OTOH, each of my hardware synths has a power button and so does the mixer. That's at least half-a-dozen more power buttons to press.
The alternative is mouse click-fest, and no fun at all.
Only in your mind. Having to reach across to use the physical controls on my hardware is way, way more hassle than moving a mouse a few cm. Trying to get the lighting right so I can read labels, etc. makes it even worse. Even the worst softsynth GUI is better than hardware.
And best part - physical gear have second hand value - software does not have that, really.
I have always lost more money selling things second-hand than I have ever spent on any single plugin, which means I could give old plugins away and still be better off than I am when I sell hardware. In fact, for that very reason it has never even occurred to me to sell any of my software licenses.
zerocrossing wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 9:10 pm
I remember recreating a patch from my 002 on Diversion, and I pretty much nailed it... but the oversampling had to be so high that I could only get a few notes of polyphony.
Have you got a Modal 002? Wow, I don't know anyone with any of their big synths. I don't think you can even buy them locally here.
Or a synth like ArcSyn that has a modulation sequencer that’s nothing like anything hardware on the market. Or anything by Sugar Bytes.
This!
Vortifex wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 5:33 am
When I used to have hardware many years ago I enjoyed the experience of making music more than I do now with a PC and DAW.
Seriously!?! I'd rather pass another kidney stone than ever have to work exclusively on hardware again. It is just so limiting compared to working ITB.
deastman wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 10:50 am
I guess I find it more enjoyable at the end of a long day to sit down and interact with a physical object.
How are a laptop and a mouse not physical objects?

Anyway, a lot of bogus garbage on both sides. I have hardware because I'm old and set in my ways and I just like having a few hardware synths around. There is no possible justification for it - hardware doesn't sound any better, it isn't any more immediate and absolutely everything is better done in software. I accept that, embrace it even, but I still like having hardware for just noodling around, developing ideas.

As soon as an idea gets to the stage where I think it might actually be something, though, I move it straight into my laptop and turn it into a song there because I know it will be a much better song in every way if I do it in software. How do I know? Easy, in software I have way more options available to get the best possible result in the shortest timeframe. In the end, what matters to me is having finished songs to perform on stage so I will always take the easiest route to that end, having no intrinsic interest whatsoever in the process.
NOVAkILL 4.0 : Dell G7 17 (Core i7, 8GB RAM, Win10), UR44C, Cubase, DUNE, Thorn, TRK-01, Equator, Hive, Substance, Arcsyn, Aparillo, Phase Plant, Pigments, Trueno, Analog Keys, MicroMonsta, Uno, Skulpt, Craft 2.

Robmobius
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3406 posts since 10 Sep, 2010 from A shit hole (Ireland).

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 3:54 am

Sorry Bones you are wrong... :D
We 'the leaders' bring you the ultimate paradigm shift. Dramatization: No paradigms were actually shifted in the making of this statement. Furthermore, any reference to paradigms is for entertainment purposes only.

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Vortifex
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1741 posts since 1 Sep, 2016

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:44 am

BONES wrote:
Wed Feb 26, 2020 9:13 pm
Vortifex wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 5:33 am
When I used to have hardware many years ago I enjoyed the experience of making music more than I do now with a PC and DAW.
Seriously!?! I'd rather pass another kidney stone than ever have to work exclusively on hardware again. It is just so limiting compared to working ITB.
Yeah. For me there's just something about the tactile experience of having the kit with all the dials and blinking lights n shiz. The physical experience of creating that way feels more fun than sitting in front of a screen. The hardware experience can be replicated to a limited extent with controllers linked to the DAW, but it's still not quite the same. I procrastinated less too.

That said, I wouldn't want to go 100% hardware again. The benefits of using a DAW are too great to give up.

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foosnark
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5104 posts since 9 Jan, 2003 from Saint Louis MO

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:40 am

BONES, who is currently on your ignore list, made this post.
I like what I like. What I like is Eurorack gear, and a Lyra-8, and sometimes a Reface CS, and about 1/10 of the time a software synth, and about 1/50 of the time a software sampler. Plus a few hardware FX and plenty of VST ones.

It's working out extremely well for me. I like the music I'm making much better than when I was using 100% software. And I know more about synthesis than I did when I was using 100% software. And I'm happier than when I was using 100% software. And I haven't even had my MIDI to CV converter plugged in for the last several months, and that's been great. It feels like freedom.

That's all that matters to me.

Robmobius
KVRAF
3406 posts since 10 Sep, 2010 from A shit hole (Ireland).

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:55 am

Vortifex wrote:
Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:44 am
That said, I wouldn't want to go 100% hardware again. The benefits of using a DAW are too great to give up.
I'd be the same... There's no way in hell that I'm giving up my DAW and 3rd party FX. Plus, there's a few soft synths that I still love.

I love the sound of the Access Virus... When a vst comes out that can do everything it can I'll sell it happily. I've no allegiance to equipment digital or otherwise. If it does what I want then I'm happy either way.

But it's all good at the end of the day.
We 'the leaders' bring you the ultimate paradigm shift. Dramatization: No paradigms were actually shifted in the making of this statement. Furthermore, any reference to paradigms is for entertainment purposes only.

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BONES
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9555 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 2:42 pm

Vortifex wrote:
Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:44 am
Yeah. For me there's just something about the tactile experience of having the kit with all the dials and blinking lights n shiz.
Me too but I prefer the kinds you can interact with using your mouse.
The physical experience of creating that way feels more fun than sitting in front of a screen.
For me it is infinitely more frustrating, not having everything right there in front of you. It took me a long time to adapt to working in software but there is no way I could go back now.
The hardware experience can be replicated to a limited extent with controllers linked to the DAW, but it's still not quite the same. I procrastinated less too.
I don't think I've turned my controller on this year. I can guarantee I haven't turned any of my hardware on, despite spending 20-30 hours a week on music. To be fair, I am trying to re-finish our album in Cubase, so I haven't had any need of my controller. Once I am done with the album I am sure it will get a lot more use. Mostly, though, that stuff is a distraction.
That said, I wouldn't want to go 100% hardware again. The benefits of using a DAW are too great to give up
For me it's the virtual instruments. The host you choose can make that easier or harder but it isn't the best thing about working ITB for me. I've never had any hardware that can match DUNE or Thorn or Kontakt or Aparillo and I'd never want to be without them.
foosnark wrote:
Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:40 am
I like what I like. What I like is Eurorack gear, and a Lyra-8, and sometimes a Reface CS, and about 1/10 of the time a software synth, and about 1/50 of the time a software sampler. Plus a few hardware FX and plenty of VST ones.
It's working out extremely well for me. I like the music I'm making much better than when I was using 100% software. And I know more about synthesis than I did when I was using 100% software. And I'm happier than when I was using 100% software. And I haven't even had my MIDI to CV converter plugged in for the last several months, and that's been great. It feels like freedom.
That's all that matters to me.
Finally, an honest response, not a sad attempt at justification.
NOVAkILL 4.0 : Dell G7 17 (Core i7, 8GB RAM, Win10), UR44C, Cubase, DUNE, Thorn, TRK-01, Equator, Hive, Substance, Arcsyn, Aparillo, Phase Plant, Pigments, Trueno, Analog Keys, MicroMonsta, Uno, Skulpt, Craft 2.

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pekbro
KVRAF
2869 posts since 29 Sep, 2010 from Maui

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 3:24 pm

Funny thing is, just how much of the hardware is actually software written to control or take the place
of analogue hardware. I would say they do sound different, it's not really practical to model every nuance
of electrical phenomena in software. They can never sound exactly the same, mostly it's the flaws exhibited by analog circuitry that aren't accurately represented in the SW.

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BONES
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9555 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 3:55 pm

When Synapse Audio go to the trouble of modelling the difference between the 50Hz mains power in the US and the 60Hz mains power elsewhere in Legend, I think that software emulations do model every subtle nuance of hardware. Look at Diva, too, where you can put subtle variation into each voice, just as analogue synths have differences between voices. That's a level above and beyond anything you could possibly perceive in the context of a mix but it's there in software because it's there in the hardware.

Ultimately, though, why does it matter if they do or don't sound exactly the same? Surely what people really need is something that sorta, kinda reminds them of that old synth, rather than a slavish recreation? After all, it's not like any of those things were actually even half as good as people's memory of them, is it? e.g. SimSynth 2, which shipped with Fruityloops 20 years ago (before it had VSTi support), sounds as much like an old Oberheim as I need. Doing A/B tests with a real one is pointless and stupid. Anyway, I'd much rather have an IK Uno than a Minimoog, it's a way better analogue synth.
NOVAkILL 4.0 : Dell G7 17 (Core i7, 8GB RAM, Win10), UR44C, Cubase, DUNE, Thorn, TRK-01, Equator, Hive, Substance, Arcsyn, Aparillo, Phase Plant, Pigments, Trueno, Analog Keys, MicroMonsta, Uno, Skulpt, Craft 2.

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pekbro
KVRAF
2869 posts since 29 Sep, 2010 from Maui

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:53 pm

Certainly it's cool that Synapse would do that, but there's a lot of physics going on with the flow
of electricity that are simply problematic or impractical to model. The warm up period for analog synths for instance. Absolutely, it hardly matters in the end, use what you like and what works for you.

Robmobius
KVRAF
3406 posts since 10 Sep, 2010 from A shit hole (Ireland).

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:44 pm

BONES wrote:
Thu Feb 27, 2020 2:42 pm
The host you choose can make that easier or harder but it isn't the best thing about working ITB for me. I've never had any hardware that can match DUNE or Thorn or Kontakt or Aparillo and I'd never want to be without them.
But you can also just switch virtual instruments... It's all about personal preference though isn't it? And what you like working with. I'd never use FL Studio for example but that doesn't necessarily mean it's worse then Studio One. I just didn't like working with it years ago.

And I've no problem about dropping Aparillo or Thorn... I don't particularly like either of them. In fact, I prefer Diversion to Thorn. But I certainly wouldn't be without Dune 3, Omnisphere or My Access Virus.

At the end of the day it's only the results that count. And I still think HW sounds better to software right off the bat. Can you achieve similar results with software, of course.
We 'the leaders' bring you the ultimate paradigm shift. Dramatization: No paradigms were actually shifted in the making of this statement. Furthermore, any reference to paradigms is for entertainment purposes only.

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BONES
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9555 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Re: Why you left VSTs?

Post Thu Feb 27, 2020 6:01 pm

Well, you are wrong. Your beloved Virus, for example, is simply a software synthesizer wrapped in a custom box with keys. It is completely and utterly no different to any VSTi, beyond the code used to create it. If Access ever decided to release it as a VSTi, it would sound exactly the same, just as the sound of my Novation K Station was indistinguishable from that of it's V-Station VSTi clone. IF you find your software doesn't sound as good as your hardware, I'd be looking for problems in your signal path because there is no reason it shouldn't sound at least as good.
NOVAkILL 4.0 : Dell G7 17 (Core i7, 8GB RAM, Win10), UR44C, Cubase, DUNE, Thorn, TRK-01, Equator, Hive, Substance, Arcsyn, Aparillo, Phase Plant, Pigments, Trueno, Analog Keys, MicroMonsta, Uno, Skulpt, Craft 2.

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