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I've seen bass.dll present in numerous games' folders. I'm trying to wrap my head around this VST — what's it for, how it could be useful? Is it different from an SF2/SFZ player in terms of features or structure?
Do you remember Cakewalk/rgc:audio SFZ? It's something like that but tries to correct some of its issues:
1. It cannot run reliable on systems with more than 2GB of RAM.
2. It can only load 1 SF2/SFZ file at once.
3. It uses a buggy XG/GM2 addressing mode that is weird since Sondfonts are inherently more GS like.
4. It's does not follow the SF2 specification. Bassmidi library is much more reliable in this respect, ans it's still constantly evolving.
But the most important one: there is a need for it :)
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So I've been using this for a bit, but I'm sometimes experiencing a recurring crash when I try to load a soundfont.
I'm using Ableton Live 9, 32-bit, on Windows 10 Educational. I have an instrument track using this VSTi with a soundfont loaded into it. When I go into its control panel to load a different soundfont, the plugin and Ableton Live crash when the explorer window for selecting a soundfont appears. This problem will persist when re-opening the arrangement. In fact, I'm unable to open any sort of soundfont anymore now it seems... Even when making new instances of the plugin on different tracks, or even in entirely new arrangements.
The weird thing is, when I try to load additional soundfonts (the load buttons and fields further down below) instead of the main soundfont on the soundfont selection screen, it doesn't crash.
Any idea what it could be?
Unable to use this plugin for anything anymore... So far this bug is ocurring on two computers, both running Windows 10.
Since I cannot test with Windows 10 Educational I can only give you some tips about testing what can be the problem.
1. Try another VST host. A very simple one like SAVIHost can be useful here. If the issue also occurs with other hosts then it can be concluded that your issue is system wide, else it's most likely host related.
2. Try to disable your AV solution temporarily. Many AV software are notoriously paranoid nowadays an tend to falsely detect Bass/Bassmidi libraries as harmful.
3. If the issue started to appeared at the same time when Windows 10 upgraded itself to a new version/ installed a bigger update, try to restore your Windows 10 a previous system state.
Report back, and based on your results I may able to find some workarounds.
Hi, thanks for your response.
I also had this happen on another system (my main system, the other one with Educational is a laptop) running Windows 10 Professional. As far as I know, Windows 10 Educational's feature set is nearly identical, so I don't think it is related to that.
It's also unlikely to be related to the anti-virus, as I have none on the laptop (though I have AVG on my desktop), in both cases the issue occurred.
Never really upgraded Windows between when I started using the plugin and now, so that can be ruled out as well.
It could possibly be the VST host, but the problem is that it happens pretty much at random, but when it occurs once, it will keep happening indefinitely. I haven't checked whether a system reboot fixes it, but I can also try some other VST hosts to see whether they remain stable over time.
I'll let you know.
So one identical thing I had when the crashes happened, was that the soundfonts were located on an external harddrive which can be quite slow at times (in fact, on the same drive, as I moved it to my laptop). Could this be related?
Right now the plugin seems to work on my main rig again, but it's a different version of the plugin (64-bit one), and the soundfont I load is on my SSD. I'll try adding some more soundfonts to see what will happen.
I understood. But unfortunately I cannot reproduce the problem on Windows 10 Professional either with the 32 or 64-bit version of the plugin. You can also try drag&drop the affected soundfont file to the plugin's interface instead of opening it by the file select dialog. This way you can figure out if the problem mysteriously related to the file select dialog or actually the reading/interpreting process of the soundfont file by the plugin's engine. Also it would be good to know if only special soundfont files are affected or all of them. If only special ones please try to upload them somewhere so I could inspect them.
Also as a useful info: there's a memory size limitation of the 32-bit plugin version. Namely you cannot load reliably soundfonts if the overall used sample sizes are equal/bigger than 2GB. Actually some stability problems can happen even close to this absolute 2GB limit. This problem manifests itself sooner if you also enable the 'Preload Soundfonts' or 'Map Soundfonts into Memory' options.
Good one, forgot about the drag and drop feature. I'll try to use this on the problematic device tomorrow, when I move back to it. There I have the case that it always crashes, 32-bit version indeed, and I may have happened to tick those boxes that you mentioned due to hickups when reading from the external drive.
I will let you know.
So it seems that it no longer crashes now, after not having used the laptop for a while. I'll have to wait until the issue occurs again before I can trace it down properly.
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I have tried, to no avail, to natively save the plugin state (settings) so that I don't have to set it up with my chosen defaults every time I use it in a project. Apparently the plugin isn't capable of this on its own and requires outside assistance (via the plugin host). Is this correct? Or am I missing something.
BTW, thanks a ton for making this plugin. Aside from the above noted issue, it works flawlessly in my DAW (REAPER) on my Windows 7 Pro system. I recently resurrected my 20 year old MIDI system (AMD K6II+/500MHz, 128MB RAM, Win98se) which has a (STILL WORKING) 16-bit ISA Sound Blaster AWE 64 Gold (4MB SoundFont memory onboard) with an 8MB daughter board. Yay me.
Your Bassmidi VSTi allows me to similarly "resurrect" my old SoundFont-based MIDI files on my new production system with REAPER and really add new life to them. So a million thanks for your ingenuity and gracious efforts.
Sorry for late reply.
In VST world in general there is a standard mechanism to save plugin settings. Namely the VST Host asks the plugin to save/load its state by getChunk()/setChunk() functions. Usually this happens automatically when you save/load a project but in most VST host you can ask the host to save the plugin's 'Bank' manually and then you will get an '.fxb' file. Later you can also load this fxb file manually by the Host. This is because ini file/registry based saving would not work good in a VST environment since there can be many active instances of the same plugin in a project that would constantly overwrite each others settings (globally). But manual fxb file saving/loading works in Cubase/Reaper/SAVIhost and in my own player (Falcosoft MIDI Player) among others.
Also fxb files are defined in VST specification so they are Host independent, meaning an fxb file saved by a Host can be loaded by another Host (for the same plugin).
Hey Falcosoft, .
No apologies necessary. Actually, I should apologize for not updating my original post to reflect that I DID do the research and discovered FXB bank file/plugin state saving in REAPER. And if you dive even deeper in Reapers VST plugin load settings, you'll find that you can set a particular .fxb settings file to default load every time you load that VST. PROBLEM (more than) SOLVED.
Thank you for taking the time to respond to my initial query and as well flesh out the reasoning as to why it's better that the host application save the plugin settings rather than the plugin itself.
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Hi, a complete newbie here hoping you can help with a small problem -
I'm using BassMidi VSTi 1.4 as the soundfont loader into Reaper v6.04/x64 under Windows 10 Pro 64. No matter which soundfont I load through the BM interface as soon as I play the MIDI track the BM Program (patch) changes, usually to 052 which is empty. If I change the program while the track is playing I get the correct instrument for the remaining duration of the track. But when I rewind the track to the beginning and hit play, the patch changes back to (eg) 052 again. The MIDI files do play correctly in Reaper if I use VST instruments instead of soundfonts.
I'll be really grateful if someone can explain what I'm doing wrong and how I can prevent the unwanted BM Program (patch) changes.
Th problem must be that you have accidentally inserted a Program Change 52 MIDI message into your MIDI track. It's also possible that some imported MIDI file contained this unwanted Program Change message and it became part of your project. In case of normal VST Instruments it's usually not a problem since many VST Instruments do not react to MIDI program Change messages at all. So you should open your MIDI track in MIDI event view and look for existing Program Change messages at the beginning of your MIDI track. If I remember correctly at the left hand side of Reaper's MIDI event dialog there is a filter that you should set to Program/Bank Change messages to see this kind of messages:
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Hi Falcosoft, .
And many thanks for your prompt reply.
I think I have followed your instructions, but please check: Double-clicked on the MIDI track to open the in-line MIDI editor. View > Filter Events / Event type = Program Change. Tick "show only events that pass filter". Nothing shows.
Also, this problem does not occur if I use Sforzando as the soundfont loader - if it was caused by a PC MIDI message, I would have expected Sforzando to give the same output as BassMidi?
No, since Sforzando is also among the VSTi plugins that does not respond to MIDI Program Change messages at all. Maybe it's because first and foremost it's an SFZ player and contrary to SF2 soundfonts, SFZ files can only contain a single instrument. Sforzando (unlike Bassmidi Vsti) is not multitimbral plugin, so it cannot be used to play standard multi channel MIDI files that use Bank/Program Change messages. It plays the same instrument on all channels and instruments have to be selected on the user interface.
So as I said before:
There must be some Program Change messages sent to Bassmidi Vsti from your project (or Reaper). There is no other explanation.
You should upload your reaper project somewhere so I could take a look at it.
Good morning Falcosoft, .
You are, of course, completely correct. It seems that because I monitored the notation with Choir Aahs, Sibelius inserted this PC into the MIDI file when exporting .sib as .mid. I didn't see it in the Reaper on-line MIDI editor but it showed up on the full MIDI events list. So all is well.
Many thanks for your patience and kind assistance.
Just to correct this a bit.
"No, since Sforzando is also among the VSTi plugins that does not respond to MIDI Program Change messages at all"
Yes sforzando can't operate as multi-timbral within single instance, but it respond to MIDI Program Change and also Bank Change. The opcodes are there in the SFZ version 2.0 specs and implemented in sforzando.
Great job, Falcosoft. This just works. 64-bit, no fussying, no setting up per-channel mappings, full multitimbral and compliant with GM program changes. It sounds as good as the soundfonts you load into it. I wonder why it is not widely well-known as the best option for multitimbral, quick-and-easy GM MIDI playback.
Wonderful job and THANK YOU.
Thank you, Falcosoft. Works very well in Reaper. However, one thing I haven't been able to discover is whether I can create a glissando of more than 4 semitones. Ideally, I'd like to be able to gliss over a range of 3 octaves. Normally, this means using the Pitch Wheel (I'm using ReaControlMIDI ahead of BassMidiVsti in Repear) but with the Pitch Wheel *range* in the VSTi set to 36 semitones (rather than the default 4, actually +/- 2). It is this 36 semitone range that I don't know how to set in BassMidiVsti. Is it currently possible? It seems to relate to CC100, CC101 and CC6 but may be also RPN 0.
Sorry for the late reply but I have not visited this site for a long time and did no get any notifications.
Back to topic. Yes, you can modify the Pitch bend range as defined in GM specification.That is you have to send RPN (0,0) and the range in semitones. The default is +/- 2 semitones as defined by GM/GS. To modify this sequence of messages should be sent to desired channels in Reaper: Control change 100,0; Control change 101,0; Controller 6, 'semitones'.