Swam solo brass iOS
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Is it possible to control SWAM instruments using only note-on velocity?
Note-on velocity alone is totally inappropriate to control Expression (i.e. dynamics). Velocity is a “static” value provided at each note-on, while Expression is something that changes continuously over time.
SWAM instruments are expressive instruments. Unlike standard sample libraries, all our instruments need some kind of Expression controller, when played live. This could be an Expression pedal, a Breath Controller, a wheel, a knob, a slider, a Wind Controller, a Seaboard, a LinnStrument, a Touché, a mobile app capable of sending MIDI data, and so on.
Controlling an expressive instrument with just velocity is like trying to paint a realistic landscape using only black and white colors. Can a saxophone emit any sound without blowing into it? Can a violin emit any sound without moving the bow?
At startup, the default mapping for the Expression controller is MIDI CC11, which is usually assigned to a keyboard expression pedal.
We provide a list of pre-defined mappings for the most common MIDI controllers. We suggest starting from one of those presets. To access the MIDI Presets list:
- For Solo Brass v1, Solo Woodwinds v3 and Solo Strings v3: select the MIDI icon, then select the PRESETS icon
- For Solo Woodwinds v2 and Solo Strings v2: click Reset
You can change the default mapping to the Expression parameter if needed.
- For Solo Brass v1, Solo Woodwinds v3 and Solo Strings v3: select the MIDI icon (all sliders highlight), then select the Expression slider and change the MIDI Message and Value accordingly.
- For Solo Woodwinds v2 and Solo Strings v2: go to the Options page -> MIDI mapping and change the MIDI CC mapping for the Expression entry accordingly.
Usually, for MIDI keyboards without an expression pedal, a good start is to map Expression to CC1 (ModWheel) and Vibrato Depth to AfterTouch (AT).
Note: Solo Brass v1 and Solo Strings v3 offer a default MIDI Preset called Keyboard ModWheel + AT Default exactly with this mapping.
You can use the Learn button and move your controller. In this mode, the instrument recognizes the first incoming CC number and automatically assigns it to the Expression setting.
Even without a physical controller, in a DAW or sequencer, you'll need to draw expression curves (also called envelopes or automations). Please refer to the user manual of your DAW to know how to provide MIDI CC curves.
Here’s an example using Logic Pro: