Polyphonic Aftertouch: why isn’t it always represented?

VST, AU, AAX, etc. plug-in Virtual Instruments discussion
Noumena
KVRist
178 posts since 4 May, 2019

Post Wed Jul 01, 2020 8:07 pm

tapper mike wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:44 pm
Also important to note. Roli has it's own proprietary method of dealing with mpe as does RogerLinnDesign and other brands claiming mpe capabilities. Which is why they all supply their own drivers.
All the ROLI stuff is class compliant. Dashboard just allows you to change the configs, and Roli doesn't do MPE any different... it's just round robining notes through channels 2-16 with some global controls on channel 1, unless you change the config.

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zerocrossing
KVRAF
10254 posts since 26 Jun, 2006 from San Francisco Bay Area

Post Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:02 pm

e-crooner wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 9:30 am
Chrisk-K wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 9:13 am
I took classical piano lessons for 7 years before playing any synths. Obviously, the piano is mightily expressive without offering AT. So, since my synth day 1, I have never cared about AT.
Thinking about it, AT is also pretty rare with real instruments. Once one has hit the key, string, drum skin or whatever, usually the only thing one can still manipulate to a certain extent is the duration of the sound. Most of the player's sensitivity goes into the attack, not the sustain.
Well, as a guitar player you get really used to having full control of at least four notes at a time. Strings can be independently bent. Each not articulation can be different. I get infinite sustain with a built in Sustainiac system. Some very cool things can happen that way. I’m sure it’s the same with any stringed orchestral instrument. I’ve even seen hand drummers do really cool things by applying pressure after a strike.

I used to try and get that feel of control that I had with a guitar by using various MIDI guitar products, but the truth is, you have to play so stiffly and cleanly that any nuance in expressive technique just ends up screwing up your tracking, so you end up programming the sound to do all the expressive stuff. It sucks, to be honest. I gave up with that and just used filters and sustainers on a basic electric guitar, but that’s more of a paraphonic system. Then I bought a TS-10 and man, the polyphonic aftertouch just felt like I’d always wanted the Roland GR stuff to feel. I’m not even a good keyboard player, either. Now I have an even better polyphonic keyboard, and I can definitely not recommend it, because if you get used to it it will break you for life. All other standard keyboard controllers feel like they’re missing something. The Rise is great too, but a different deal and you have to have a different mindset when you play it.
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zerocrossing
KVRAF
10254 posts since 26 Jun, 2006 from San Francisco Bay Area

Post Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:11 pm

Noumena wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:54 pm
I disagree that the Linnstrument is superior to the Roli. I've had both and I've found that for me the opposite is true.
One thing I noticed when I was shopping for MPE controllers is that there are very few good Linnstrument demos. Even ones from Roger sound bad. Something is just off about the performance in nearly all of them. I think I’ve heard a few really good ones. I’m assuming that means there’s a lot of effort needed to become proficient on one. The Rise, OTOH, I felt like in the first day of owning one I was doing stuff that seemed pretty good, and by the end of the week I felt comfortable on it. I know people don’t like the squishy bumps, but they feel right to me. Exactly right. If you don’t want the bumps on your way up the scale, it’s sensitive above and below them as well.

But why is this thread becoming about MPE? I’m asking about polyphonic aftertouch. :?
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BONES
GRRRRRRR!
10136 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Post Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:45 pm

I don't really understand why any of this is hard at all. If MIDI can do per-key velocity I can't see any reason why it can't do per-key everything.
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AnX
KVRAF
7639 posts since 17 Nov, 2015

Post Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:58 pm

zerocrossing wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:02 pm
e-crooner wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 9:30 am
Chrisk-K wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 9:13 am
I took classical piano lessons for 7 years before playing any synths. Obviously, the piano is mightily expressive without offering AT. So, since my synth day 1, I have never cared about AT.
Thinking about it, AT is also pretty rare with real instruments. Once one has hit the key, string, drum skin or whatever, usually the only thing one can still manipulate to a certain extent is the duration of the sound. Most of the player's sensitivity goes into the attack, not the sustain.
Well, as a guitar player you get really used to having full control of at least four notes at a time. Strings can be independently bent.
at the same time?

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Tj Shredder
KVRAF
4512 posts since 6 Jan, 2017 from Outer Space

Post Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:36 pm

BONES wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:45 pm
I don't really understand why any of this is hard at all. If MIDI can do per-key velocity I can't see any reason why it can't do per-key everything.
Its the speed and 8-bit nature of Midi. They could get 3 expressions into it, but pitch bend needs to be 14-bit and would eat way too much bandwidth on a single channel. That is also the reason why Steinberg believed Midi is doomed and put the per-key everything expressions into VST3 without Midi. They completely forgot, that there are performative ways to input notes into a sequence in Cubendo...

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zerocrossing
KVRAF
10254 posts since 26 Jun, 2006 from San Francisco Bay Area

Post Thu Jul 02, 2020 6:41 am

AnX wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:58 pm
zerocrossing wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:02 pm
e-crooner wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 9:30 am
Chrisk-K wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 9:13 am
I took classical piano lessons for 7 years before playing any synths. Obviously, the piano is mightily expressive without offering AT. So, since my synth day 1, I have never cared about AT.
Thinking about it, AT is also pretty rare with real instruments. Once one has hit the key, string, drum skin or whatever, usually the only thing one can still manipulate to a certain extent is the duration of the sound. Most of the player's sensitivity goes into the attack, not the sustain.
Well, as a guitar player you get really used to having full control of at least four notes at a time. Strings can be independently bent.
at the same time?
Well, technically yes, though it’s not really done, but you can slide up an entire chord while you’re hammering notes, so... my point is more that notes can be bent independently of each other. I forgot that with your right hand you can also be partially muting some notes while letting others ring out. The end result of all of that is that notes in a chord can all end up sounding subtlety different in a way that playing a chord on most synths just can’t. You can do a little with velocity, but after that event, the ship has sailed. With polyphonic aftertouch, the ship can sail on.
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tapper mike
KVRAF
5407 posts since 20 Jan, 2008

Post Thu Jul 02, 2020 8:39 am

Noumena wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 8:07 pm
tapper mike wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:44 pm
Also important to note. Roli has it's own proprietary method of dealing with mpe as does RogerLinnDesign and other brands claiming mpe capabilities. Which is why they all supply their own drivers.
All the ROLI stuff is class compliant. Dashboard just allows you to change the configs, and Roli doesn't do MPE any different... it's just round robining notes through channels 2-16 with some global controls on channel 1, unless you change the config.

Then you don't know the linnstrument that well. The linnstrument can be set as per row or per note.

As for Roli there is a thread here which is 82 pages long at last count.
viewtopic.php?f=102&t=445951

Detailing all the issues associated with roli instruments. On the other hand with the slight quibble that the Linnstrument can't simultaneously send usb and midi out owners of the linnstrument are fairly happy with it.

:hyper:

felis
KVRian
653 posts since 25 Jul, 2009

Post Thu Jul 02, 2020 10:23 am

zerocrossing wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:11 pm
.....
But why is this thread becoming about MPE? I’m asking about polyphonic aftertouch. :?
The thread took a significant detour. I get what you're saying though.
I think the same way about release velocity. Why don't all soft synths use it?
Probably for the same reason - because not all keyboards have it.

There's a reason why all keyboards don't have polyAT - it costs more, because more parts are needed.
But there's no reason for all keyboards that have velocity, to not have release velocity.
There are no extra hardware costs, because the sensors are already there.

Another detour :ud: - sorry about that.

Torchlight
KVRist
317 posts since 10 Apr, 2010

Post Fri Jul 03, 2020 4:50 am

e-crooner wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 7:57 am
In my view, with EDM, which most people using plugins seem to make, the subtleties of using poly AT are superfluous. So, most computer musicians don't get an expensive poly AT keyboard. Developers know that...
Different kinds of electronic music might have evolved had the readily available tools been more expressive.

dr_loop
KVRist
57 posts since 5 Apr, 2011

Post Fri Jul 03, 2020 8:32 am

Thinking about it, AT is also pretty rare with real instruments. Once one has hit the key, string, drum skin or whatever, usually the only thing one can still manipulate to a certain extent is the duration of the sound. Most of the player's sensitivity goes into the attack, not the sustain.
... come on, your not serious about it! Take a real orchestra, *most* of its instruments have some form of AT or another. As pointed out, even percussion to some extent. Notable exceptions: pianos, mallets, harps & the like.

As to the initial question: a *BIG* culprit I think is the Ableton-Live team.
Out of some obscure reason they have chosen to completely ignore PolyAT ever since.
Which is a real PITA!!! :evil:

Noumena
KVRist
178 posts since 4 May, 2019

Post Sat Jul 04, 2020 7:27 pm

e-crooner wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 7:57 am
In my view, with EDM, which most people using plugins seem to make
I very much doubt that.

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zerocrossing
KVRAF
10254 posts since 26 Jun, 2006 from San Francisco Bay Area

Post Sat Jul 04, 2020 7:49 pm

dr_loop wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 8:32 am
Thinking about it, AT is also pretty rare with real instruments. Once one has hit the key, string, drum skin or whatever, usually the only thing one can still manipulate to a certain extent is the duration of the sound. Most of the player's sensitivity goes into the attack, not the sustain.
... come on, your not serious about it! Take a real orchestra, *most* of its instruments have some form of AT or another. As pointed out, even percussion to some extent. Notable exceptions: pianos, mallets, harps & the like.

As to the initial question: a *BIG* culprit I think is the Ableton-Live team.
Out of some obscure reason they have chosen to completely ignore PolyAT ever since.
Which is a real PITA!!! :evil:
Actually, they don’t ignore it. They actively filter it out. The odd thing is, it does receive polyphonic aftertouch from Push. You just can’t use it with plugins. :x
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zerocrossing
KVRAF
10254 posts since 26 Jun, 2006 from San Francisco Bay Area

Post Sat Jul 04, 2020 7:53 pm

felis wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 10:23 am
zerocrossing wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:11 pm
.....
But why is this thread becoming about MPE? I’m asking about polyphonic aftertouch. :?
The thread took a significant detour. I get what you're saying though.
I think the same way about release velocity. Why don't all soft synths use it?
Probably for the same reason - because not all keyboards have it.

There's a reason why all keyboards don't have polyAT - it costs more, because more parts are needed.
But there's no reason for all keyboards that have velocity, to not have release velocity.
There are no extra hardware costs, because the sensors are already there.

Another detour :ud: - sorry about that.
No, that pisses me off too. I use release velocity all the time. It’s especially great to control envelope decay time.

I think I was hoping that someone would say, “oh, it’s actually not a big deal to implement, they’re just ignoring it or lazy.” If it’s a major job, though, then I could understand it. I’m currently stumped that Obsession is MPE compatible (yay!) yet does not react to polyphonic aftertouch. :? Wut? OB-Xa V does respond to poly aftertouch, yet no MPE.
Zerocrossing Media

4th Law of Robotics: When turning evil, display a red indicator light. ~[ ●_● ]~

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Tj Shredder
KVRAF
4512 posts since 6 Jan, 2017 from Outer Space

Post Sun Jul 05, 2020 4:45 am

zerocrossing wrote:
Sat Jul 04, 2020 7:53 pm
I’m currently stumped that Obsession is MPE compatible (yay!) yet does not react to polyphonic aftertouch. :? Wut? OB-Xa V does respond to poly aftertouch, yet no MPE.
I have my LinnStrument always set to send channelAT, as most synths respond to that rather than polyAT. In MPE mode this doesn't matter anyway, as all Midi is allocated by channel to the voices.
For Arturia, still not being aware enough of the importance of MPE, they had to implement polyAT for the CS-80, they are simply too lazy to learn new tricks... I guess the coders who did Pigments don't overlap with those who do emulations...

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