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GigaStudio News 2-26-03:

Subject: Giga Newsletter For February 2003
Date: Wed, 26 Feb 2003 14:19:52 -0800
From: gigainfo@tascam.com
To: BuildOrBuy

Updated Information About GigaStudio, GigaSampler & Associated Audio Tools...

Giga Newsletter For February 2003 - A New Giga Website!

For quite some time we have been chipping away at a new website for GigaStudio, and now the time has come to have it go live. Check it out here: www.nemesysmusic.com

Things have been cleaned up, updated, and re-organized to make it easier to navigate around the site to get the info you need right now. Look for more support material to be added over the next few weeks including a brand new FAQ section. We at TASCAM are really proud of the new site, and we hope you guys enjoy it as much as we do!

Although the current address is still www.nemesysmusic.com, the final address will be changed to www.tascamgiga.com in the next few weeks.


3.0 Development

As some of may or may not know, development for the 3.0 release of GigaStudio is in full swing at this moment. The original 3 engineers in Austin are hard at work on what will be the biggest release for GigaStudio since its inception. Joining the staff in Austin are additional engineers from TASCAM's R&D facility in Palo Alto, California.

Together with the team leadership in Los Angeles, TASCAM has poured over hundreds of requests from end users and is hard at work implementing as many of these features as possible into the new version of GigaStudio. Stay tuned for more details as things progress.


New Libraries

Scarbee's R.S.P '73 Rhodes

For those of you who are familiar with Thomas Scarbee and his amazing J-Slap and J-Fingered bass libraries, you know that he is not one to create a library that is anything short of mind-blowing. The new R.S.P '73 Rhodes follows Scarbee's tradition of creating high quality, excellent sounding GigaStudio libraries This '73 Fender Rhodes Stage Piano is a sweet sounding instrument and features no less than 12 velocity layers and separate release samples for all 12 of those layers! If you want a classic instrument created the way it was supposed to be created, give the Scarbee R.S.P '73 Rhodes a look and listen.

Bigga Gigga's "Rain Piano" and "Studio Grand 88 piano"

The Rain Piano: A serious Upright piano with character. Sometimes a Grand Piano is simply too much or lacks personality. Rain Piano is professionally de-tuned to add character while staying in tune with your other instruments. Using a true 8 velocity X2 (pedal Up / pedal Down) system, the extra velocities provide smooth response from softest to loudest timbres. Recorded at Studio Kuling, Sweden using only the finest gear and mastered in 24-bit stereo.

Studio Grand 88: 2 CD GigaStudio Instrument A huge sample instrument with ultra realism from true 8 Velocity X2 (Pedal Up / Pedal Down), which provides extra responsive velocity layering smooth transition from softest to loudest timbres. Recorded at Studio Kuling in Orebro, Sweden One of Sweden's finest rooms for recording acoustic instruments. All samples recorded at 44.1kHz Stereo, originally mastered in 24-bit depth for ultra-low noise. Six user preset voicings included.

Q Up Arts "Voices Of The Aztecs"

Add ancient culture to your music. Voices of the Aztecs is a full compilation of Aztecs instruments, loops and vocals. These samples were recorded in Mexico from archeological artifacts. From the big Huehuetl drum to the smallest of Ocarinas, all of the sounds are unique. Water drums and wooded percussion, clay flutes and incredible sound of the seashell horn all remind us of a distant culture that disappeared 400 years ago.

Online Shopping

Just another reminder that any purchases made from TASCAM.COM or TASCAMGIGA.com are completely safe and secure. Now, the only thing you have to worry about are the neighbors becoming homicidal when you create music with your new Drum & Bass library at 3:00 in the morning :)


Giga-Tip: Sequencing MIDI drums

One of the trickiest parts of creating music with samples is making the instruments sound natural. No place is this harder than with sampled drums. Often, if the person sequencing the drum pattern is not a drummer, the patterns end up sounding mechanical and stiff. Here are a few tips to make your drum patterns sound more realistic:

1. Vary the velocity. This is one of the most important things to keep in mind when programming drums. A real drummer will rarely hit the drums exactly the same each
time. Editing the performance to include some slight variations in velocity will make a world of difference. This is especially true with tom and snare fills. Take the time to dissect what a real drummer would play, and you will find that a human being will interject natural velocity variations into each fill. Often, a note falling on a downbeat of a fill will be considerably harder hit than that of alternating hits that will follow. The feel of the fill will also dictate what notes get programmed harder and softer. Some experimentation against a metronome will help you better understand what notes need to be harder or softer than others.

Hihats and cymbals are another area that folks run into problems when trying to make their drum patterns sound real. Hihats, Rides, and even crashes that get ridden on a specific part of a song can sound very mechanical if you do not vary the velocity. For example, try taking a single bar pattern of kick, snare and hihat playing basic time.

Put a single kick on 1 and 3 and a snare hit on 2 and 4. Now put an 1/8th note closed hihat pattern over the top leaving the velocity the same for every hit. Sounds pretty stiff huh?

Try going into the hihat pattern and merely cutting the velocity of every other hit (on each "and" of the measure) by 30% or 40%…suddenly the track grooves because you have now written the hihat velocity the way a real drummer would physically play it. Try doing this with ride cymbals as well.

2. Program the way a real drummer would play. Often, non-drummers do not pay close attention to what is being hit at what point in the sequence. How does this effect how realistic a drum pattern sounds? Well, even a non-drummer will pick up on a cymbal crash being hit at the same time as a hihat hit in a busy pattern. By taking the time to go through your sequence to weed out physically impossible drum hits, you will solidify the illusion of your programmed drum pattern. To take it a step further, after you eliminate the simultaneous hits, you can go in and remove additional hits to make things sound even more realistic. A good example of this is to take our single measure pattern from the earlier demonstration. Try adding a crash on the downbeat of 1 and removing the immediately following "and" hihat hit. A drummer who would physically hit a raised crash cymbal would not be able to get back to the hihat quick enough to hit this hihat note. Dropping specific notes like this wi! ll help your track groove and sound infinitely more realistic.

3. Alternate hits. Most drum libraries for GigaStudio offer a pair of snare hits to allow for L/R programming, thus reducing the "machine gun effect" that a single sample can create when hit in a drum fill for example. This is a good thing to keep in mind with other elements of a drumset as well. When you program a drum pattern, be sure to alternate crash cymbals as often as possible. This will greatly reduce the drum machine sound of a single crash being hit repeatedly. Alternating kick drum hits is not as crucial because the bass drum on a drum set is not as easily detectable as being a repeating sample.

Hihat Chicks. Any good drummer will always keep time with their hihat pedal whenever the hihats are not being hit by the sticks. Adding an 1/8 or ¼ note hihat "chick" through a ride cymbal passage will greatly increase the illusion that the pattern was actually played by a real drummer. Another good place for this is during drum fills and tom patterns. It will really increase the groove of the part by adding this simple timekeeper.


Drop Us A Giga-line

Got a suggestion or specific question for us? Please feel free to contact us at gigateam@tascam.com. We love to hear from you folks, so don’t be shy!

Let Us Hear From You...

GIGATEAM@tascam.com  is the connection if you need to find a local Giga dealer, or have a question, request, recommendations, etc.

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Web Development, Gill Boyd & Team - Posted 02/28/2003; Updated 03/03/2003