=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=APPLE II MUSIC & SOUND FORUM CONFERENCE LOG January 15, 1992 10 PM ET Topic: SoundSmith 1.0!

Forum Leader: Joyce Madden (AFL JoyceM), Forum Assistant: Gene Koh (AFA Gene) Forum Consultants: Greg Dib (ELECTMUSIC), Ed Rosenblatt (AFC Eddie), Lindsay Hough (LindsayGS) Copyright (c) 1992 America Online All Rights Reserved =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=AFL JoyceM We will be talking about SoundSmith soon. Waiting for our guest :) Dr Teeth AFA Parik Hey, Parik. Do you still have any notes on the SoundSmith format? File format, that is. Nothing besides memories, teeth. :) There is a technote in ADV. There is also full source for playing SS songs (both .wav and asif insts) inadv. Really? Okay, I'll check it out. basically everything you need to play, edit, etc, etc both ss and synthlab songs are in the ADV libs. Question---> What is the best file you've come across in your listening years? one of the mods, teeth.

Dr Teeth AFA Parik Dr Teeth AFA Parik

AFL JoyceM For what program, Teeth? AFA Parik Dr Teeth AFC Brite Dr Teeth AFC Brite AFC Eddie Dr Teeth AFC Brite I love row-row-row your boat, Popcorn. (giving Parik a Shoved-Init) the Hallelujah Chorus Hmm. SynthLab, right? I never really check those out.... oops, wrong program ! Why, Brite, how nice of you to say that! And I did mean SS, Joyce when I get my new hard drive, I'll have more room to play with SS files Thanks! Also HouseBeat (500k!)

AFL JoyceM Jim, He (Dave) told me he would try very hard to make this event. If he can't, I have the necessary information. Dr Teeth Atomic D I'm still here, really! It is kind of disconcerting when the Forum leader leaves..... Wasn't sound smith done by Hubiert Aalberts?

Dr Teeth Atomic D

That's him! Does he have a publisher?

AFL JoyceM Well, I can see that SevenHills is late....so...let me see if I can fill in for them. Dr Teeth Yes Atomic. Seven hills is publishing SS 1.0.

AFL JoyceM Okay, as most of you all know, SevenHills will be releasing SoundSmith in the next couple of months. It is still being beta tested. Also, it will have (and does have) MIDI input capabilities. Anyone have a questions, that hopefully I can answer :) AFA Parik True? Dr Teeth AFC Eddie AFL Marty i'm told SS's midi input is, to put it nicely, awful. You need to have a prerecorded song already playing or somesuch nonesense. Does SoundSmith add any more and/or better editing tools in 1.0? True, but there's a way around that, Parik. I don't know that I'd call it awful.

AFL JoyceM Parik, the inputting with MIDI right now is very awkward. (difficult in my opinion), but with the beta version I have, that 'feature' will be changing. AFL Marty Awkward is a good word.

AFL JoyceM I thought so too, Marty :) We are hoping that editing tools and other utilites will be featured with SS (how do you like that non-disclosure comment - I feel like Apple ) :) AFA Parik Dr Teeth it sounds like the only thing changed in ss 1.0 is awkard MIDI input. and the owner. Well, I just wonder if there will be anything like Track volume, etc.

AFL JoyceM Parik, I feel positive that the final release of SS will be a 100% improvement over what we now have available. The Window menu is really quite nice, and with input from the beta testers, I am sure SevenHills will do the best they can to bring us a super, easy to use, edit, program. AFL Marty But MIDI input for SS is a big deal. tunes via that spreadsheet thing. It's such a drudge to input

AFL JoyceM Agree, Marty. and designing MIDI input into a program that didn't have it is difficult. Dr Teeth SPEAK FOR YOURSELF, MARTY (from someone who canna play a note)

ELECTMUSIC Joyce, any idea on cost of the program?

AFA Parik AFL Marty AFC Eddie

is Huibert still programming Soundsmith v1.0? over? I was speaking for myself.

Or has 7hills taken

MIDI capability for SS will mean conversion capability to and from other formats.

AFL JoyceM No, Greg....not yet. I am sure the closer they get to a final, releasable version, prices will be discussed. I am under the understanding that SevenHills has taken it over, but I could be wrong. AFA Parik i dunno, my feeling is that if NoiseTracker gets MIDI and editing capabilities, or if SynthLAB get editing, it would kick.

ELECTMUSIC I am assuming Joyce, that the Midi Implimentation is the Standard Midi File Format? AFL Marty That is correct, Joyce. Dave Hecker posted something to that effect in the Seven Hills area.

AFL JoyceM We are hoping so, Greg AFC Eddie Dr Teeth Dr Teeth AFL Marty AFL Marty AFA Parik I doubt if SLab will ever get editing or NT will ever get MIDI. What Seven Hills Area? Or heck, if NT ever gets editing (useful that is) Go to APR or AGR and select Direct Connect... Seven Hills area is listed there. you could, I guess, use SoundSmith to create your songs and NoiseTracker to set the instruments.

KimBrennan NT has problems with standard SS files. AFC Eddie Dr Teeth I doubt if SS will save or load in MIDI file format, Greg. NT doesn't support any commands other than volume and tempo.

ELECTMUSIC Well, how is the Midi Input working at this point? Nuzz AFC Eddie Dr Teeth If someone would write a good MidiSynth editor, I'd gladly publish it! It's done in real time recording, Greg. Midi is for performers....

AFL JoyceM Greg, it is very awkward/difficult at this point. AFC Eddie Nuzz, we wish!

ELECTMUSIC How accurate is it?

AFL JoyceM We need Parik to write that MS editor!!! AFL JoyceM Greg, I can't answer that....I don't know. thingie to work well enought. AFA Parik Nuzz AFA Andy AFC Eddie AFA Andy i'll pass that duty along to dyajim :)

:) I can't get the MIDI

Yes Parik" If you write it, they will come" Yeah, Go for it Parik. Do it together, Parik and Jim! That would even be better, Eddie.

KimBrennan OK. Under 5.04 I found that SS had to have the MIDI device ON and connected. Otherwise it wouldn't work at all. AFL JoyceM Interesting, Kim....you can leave me E-mail if you would thanks. KimBrennan It works under 6.0...IMHO better than under 5.04 AFL JoyceM I did....that wasn't the problem, hmmmm, how do I say this, the awkwardness of imputting with MIDI was beyond my comprehension/ability. KimBrennan Ok, Joyce, noted. I'll e-mail you Dr Teeth I would think that you would have to have a very fast playing song to get any kind of an accurate input.

AFL JoyceM I use Floyd's FileTools, and have to disable it before I can run SS - otherwise I get dumped. KimBrennan Hmmm. I don't use FileTools (though I keep meaning to put it in my DA folder. AFL JoyceM I figure one needs to take about 4 hours to do it justice. I really think that once they get some of the awkwardness out of the program as we know it today (beta version), it will really be a great one. AFC Eddie Dr Teeth Yes, Filetools will not work with any program in MIDI input. SS .95 takes a LOT of room, I don't see that 1.0 will take any less.

AFL JoyceM I know, Eddie...but I can't even run SS with FileTools active. For some reason, those two are not compatible. AFC Eddie Dr Teeth One thing to note: duration. SS MIDI will never allow changes in note

The main EXE file is an image of some 700K or so (but only about 60-70k on the disk.

KimBrennan I noted some menu changes from .95 to 1.0b5 AFL JoyceM Yes, I did too. Dr Teeth I really think that SevenHills is trying.

Eddie-You can shorten a note by using STP or fading it to a level of 0 and for longer notes you need to use a long sample or a looped instrument.

AFL JoyceM I am positive with their abilities. AFC Eddie Yes, Teeth, but you can't do quarter notes, half notes, whole notes, etc. within a track.

AFL JoyceM Eddie, why is that? Dr Teeth However it is possible to play a sampled instrument with a sustain loop inside of the sample, so that there is an Attack, a sustain and a release just like a model sound wave. Because the basic note length is determined by the instrument sample. Agreed, Teeth, but that's not precise enough for real musicianship. Whereas with full MIDI implementation, as in SLab or DTune, you do get that. Dr Teeth MOD files use noise tracker of a musician smattering of by numbers. them all the time, and can play them (only in mods though).And I am enough (trombone, baritone, tuba, and a guitar) to know that all music can be represented

AFC Eddie

AFC Eddie

Yes, but SS doesn't allow certain numbers!

KimBrennan No sweat, Joyce. Beta testers should communicate between each other. AFL JoyceM Agree :) Dr Teeth AFC Eddie Dr Teeth AFC Eddie All 'true musicianship' is is how less lazy you are to get the accidentals perfect. What numbers? You can't say, for instance, that one note of a certain inst. will be precisely twice as long as the last. Er, I don't understand what you mean, Eddie. Let's say you had a string instrument in Soundsmith and wanted to do a one track tune (boring, I know, but just for argument sake). And you wanted to play a melody which had some notes longer than others. How do you do it in SS? Am I dealing with a looped instrument or not? Either way.

Dr Teeth AFC Eddie

Dr Teeth

Okay. If it were a slow song, in say largo or so, I would use a looped instrument and use STP for rests. If each note followed the next, there is a natural attack bewteen each note to diferenciate between the two, so that all the notes do not run into each other. On a faster song with not really long notes (like a dotted whole note), an unsustained instrument works fine, and again, when silence is needed, you shove in a STP command or turn the volume off at the appropriate time. But what if you wanted one note to be two or three beats longer than the last?

AFC Eddie

AFL JoyceM Our guest has arrived :) Dr Teeth Er, what do you mean "longer than the last". In soundsmith, you can set out how many spaces to a beat (versus beats to a measure). To extend the length of the note you just put the Stp or next note that much further down the line. Or are you talking about having the decay of one note extend further than the duration of the one following it?

SevenHills Hi! Gee, I didn't know you were billing me as an actual guest! I woulda quit early to be here on time! AFL JoyceM No problem, Dave - we are just glad you could make it. Dave, do you want to tell us a little about SoundSmith....I am sure I left out some important items. AFC Eddie Sorry, Teeth, we should allow our guest to go now... continue this with you later, tho! I'd like to

SevenHills You probably covered the "biggie"...MIDI support. Dr Teeth Dr Teeth Okay, No problem Er, I think that you were beat up on MIDI

AFL JoyceM We did, and I know that some people had some questions that I couldn't answer. SevenHills I'll have to read the transcript when it's posted. Keep in mind that this discussion is about a program that is NOT released, so things are still changing. Specifically, MIDI support (being new) isn't yet as advanced as we want it. DanW190 Is SS v1.0 finished or can we still submit suggestions for helpful editor commands?

SevenHills You can suggest features for SoundSmith; v1.0 is NOT done (it only recently entered beta testing). I obviously can't make any guarantees about _when_ a particular suggestion would be implemented, but if you've got any, please send them via email to "SevenHills" (if we get your suggestions there's a chance for inclusion; if we don't get them then there's no way we can include them). Dr Teeth Is there any plans for Global Track volume (where, if wanted you could automatically assign track volumes that would let you

change volume during a song without having to do each note by hand? DanW190 Dr Teeth Great, thanks! Do you mean via track or via selection box? Er, via Track I think.

SevenHills Hmmm...Please forgive my ignorance on what the shareware version of SoundSmith had...I've been only dealing with the new SoundSmith so I might be telling you about something you already know, but.. Dr Teeth It's mostly so you can follow accidentals in music that goes from all soft to all loud. Which is almost impossible with SS .95

SevenHills There is a way to highlight a range of notes (or "cells" in the spreadsheet) and either (a) apply a certain volume to those notes, or (b) Fade in the volume or (c) Fade out the volume. So you don't have to change the volume of each note individually. Is that what you're after? Dr Teeth DanW190 Dr Teeth That's IT! Option A is what I was talking about, that's great! :) How about Fade (From volume) (To volume) Instead of Fade completely in or Fade comepletly out?

SevenHills Good suggestion; we'll consider it! Dr Teeth I've got millions of em, having to punch in all those 'cells' by hand and then doing the post producion on it

ELECTMUSIC Would suggestion be better left in your forum or in AMS? SevenHills It would be best to email suggestions directly to our SevenHills address. Dr Teeth How about a 'Cut instrument from track' option. For use with Ian Schmidts Modifier (converts Amegia Mod files), so you could expand from the MOD's four tracks to the full 15 How about a checkbox in the "Fade" dialog that would only place the "3xx" volume change command in note boxes that have an instrument defined (to eliminate the funny "choppy" sound you get when sometimes fading large selections of unsustaining instruments?) (or maybe I should just e-mail this stuff?) :) (I didn't know that was what was causing the funny choppy sound, hmmmm)


Dr Teeth

SevenHills Dan, that might be possible, but don't know how it would sound (since fading is normally a consistent drop/increase in volume over a set amount of time). DanW190 All I can say is that some selections sound better when you remove the 3xx commands from sections that don't have notes playing.. This happened when fading an entire block, or other size ranges.

I'll e-mail you the full info. Dr Teeth I think that the 'choppy sound is caused by fading a too small area.

SevenHills Email would be best because it'll _definitely_ get saved in our SoundSmith folder so our SS project manager can deal with it. I can imagine a choppy sound could occur fading area, or fading a large area where you've got a and there (because there would be a steady fade then a sudden drop/increase when the next batch Dr Teeth over too small an few notes here during silence, of notes was hit.

BTW, I'm curious. How much of the program is still Huibert's programming?

SevenHills Huibert is still doing 100% of the coding. He's mainly interested in getting MIDI done and releasing version 1.0 ASAP. We'd like to incorporate more feature changes. DanW190 How about adding resource support for the menus and windows? :)

SevenHills We're trying to find a happy medium that'll satisfy us both. AFC Eddie Dave, I'll send you a copy of the transcript of this chat in its entirety so you can see all the suggestions. I appreciate it!

SevenHills Thanks, Eddie!

AFL JoyceM I know it is getting late back east...do we have any more questions for Seven Hills? Dr Teeth Hmm. Well I know that I could make myself a real nuisance for making suggestions. But I'll do them in E mail... I do have one more question though AFL JoyceM Dave, can you stick around a little longer? SevenHills Sure Dr Teeth Huibert sent me a copy of SS1.0 Alpha, and all it does is bomb out. Am i mistaken that he changed the format of SoundSmith.Config file and that he neglected to send me one? (I reason this because I erased my config file from .95 and it bombed out at the same place and time) And the config file from .95 wont work.

SevenHills I'm checking... Dr Teeth Okay..I'm waiting...

SevenHills I don't think so...I don't believe there is a "config" file with SoundSmith 1.0b1. Dr Teeth Hmmm, weird.

SevenHills There's SndSmith.Sys16, Intro.Music, SndSmith.Screen, DOC.Data,

Main, and Title.Screen But no "config"... Dr Teeth Well all he sent was the "Main" along with the fill .95, so maybe therein lies the rub.... "Main" is where all the changes are

SevenHills Remember, it _was_ alpha. taking place. Dr Teeth

True. Or maybe it was damaged in transit, and just 'happens' to bomb out at the same place.

AFL JoyceM Dave (SevenHills), I really appreciate you coming by this evening. I have to leave early, but both AFA Gene and AFC Eddie will be able to help you and the rest of our guests. Again, thanks. SevenHills Thanks, Joyce! Sorry I couldn't make it sooner!

AFL JoyceM Thanks all...and nite Dr Teeth Any proposed release date, or are you also playing Apple Computer on us :)

SevenHills I'd like to go, too...unless there are any other questions? Release date: "When it's done!" ;) We'll be watching for all your suggestions!