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#508321 - 05/24/23 01:52 PM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: cgiles]
Diki Offline


Registered: 04/25/05
Posts: 14211
Loc: NW Florida
I really think you ought to give SWAM a try, Chas… your note selection is very tasty, but the saxophone sound is letting you down over legato phrases and fingering.

I was amazed at how much going to a modeled sax improves the realism. And SWAM can run on an iPad or iPhone very affordably if you want portability or don’t have a Mac. Very easy to set up (it has auto-map for controllers) and very simple to use. It even sticks to each horn’s natural range, so you can’t play outside and ruin the illusion!

Treat yourself to the best $40 you ever spent! 🎹♥️
_________________________
An arranger is just a tool. What matters is what you build with it..!

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#508325 - 05/24/23 02:45 PM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: cgiles]
cgiles Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/29/05
Posts: 6703
Loc: Roswell,GA/USA
I'm sure you're right Diki, about the SOUND superiority of VST's like SWAM and many others. However, I think personal taste, playability, and how well it 'fits' with the other instruments on the tune, is equally or possibly even more important. I always liked that slightly tweaked (by me) 'breathy' sax on my ancient PA1x-Pro and that's why it's usually my 'go to' Sax, especially on ballads. I'm sure I'd like SWAM (maybe even better) if I were dissatisfied enough with my current choice to try it. Call it 'lazy', but I'm just not the type to go to a lot of trouble to achieve what MAY be a slight improvement in the sound of ONE instrument. I guess I'm more into WHAT is played rather than WHAT it's played on. I really like a lyrical approach to improvisation, especially on pretty, beautifully structured 'standards', and I tend to play it like I would sing it IF i COULD SING smile smile. I guess it comes down to whether YOU, the performer, is satisfied with a particular sound. I'm sure there is a 'better' substitute for practically everything in life but again, sometimes it's just a matter of personal taste, and we all know how subjective THAT is smile.

On another note, so sorry to hear that you're going through such a scary medical situation but happy that you seem to be handling it so well (mentally, physically, and medically). Can't offer you any prayers (you know ME smile ), but I will certainly send lots of good thoughts your way. My own health seems to be on a downward spiral (you name it, I've got it), mostly things related to old age, the one thing we dread (until we consider the alternative smile ).

Get well soon, I miss our loving discussions smile smile smile. Do you know how hard it is pick a fight with Rikki, Bernie, or Paul smile smile smile.

chas
_________________________
"Faith means not wanting to know what is true." [Nietzsche]

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#508326 - 05/24/23 03:13 PM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: cgiles]
Diki Offline


Registered: 04/25/05
Posts: 14211
Loc: NW Florida
Thanks Chas. I’ve missed our sparring too!

The thing about SWAM is, there’s a reason you like what you have. You bought it! It was better than what you had before, so you got to using it. All I’m saying is, if you have a device SWAM runs on, buy it, it’s pocket change. And it may easily make you think of your current favorite the way you think of the sound that that replaced!

You want sexy breathy sax, it does that. Same one also does loud growly sax. And everything in between, all by simply how you play. Believe me, I’ve got my goto sax sounds I’ve used for decades. Breathy Alto. Been in Roland’s my last three arrangers. Never thought I would need better. Then I played SWAM. Game over!

In truth, it’s not the sound. It how it handles legato, something sampled saxes fail at spectacularly. They are amazing one note at a time, but fail horribly trying to join a phrase together. Enter SWAM. It can ONLY play one note ar a time, like a real sax. You might (you did!) accidentally overlap a couple of notes, and you got two notes, not one. You might also join up two notes for a legato, but the sample was tongued for both. Sax players only tongue the start of phrases.

I think the best way to explain it to an organ player is, you know the difference between how a proper B3 percussion tab works compared to a sampled percussion organ patch? Night and day. Phrasing is so much easier when the start of phrases is where you hear the percussion. Even Hammond temporarily lost their way making later models than the B3 have multiple trigger percussion (triggers on every note), and it why the B3 is still King, and the most emulated organ out there (not a lot of L100 models, are there?!).

If you’ve got a device it will run on, give SWAM a whirl. At worst, you’re only out $40. At best, you’ve found your new favorite sax! I think maybe I need to run up a couple of demos doing stuff I know you’d like… 🎹♥️
_________________________
An arranger is just a tool. What matters is what you build with it..!

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#508328 - 05/24/23 04:02 PM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: Diki]
cgiles Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/29/05
Posts: 6703
Loc: Roswell,GA/USA
Originally Posted By Diki
if you have a device SWAM runs on, buy it, it’s pocket change.

...and therein lies the rub. I don't (and probably will never) own anything 'APPLE'. Nothing against it, just never used it, or any Apple products. My Smartwatch and phone(s) are both Samsung and none of my 4 or 5 tablets are Apple. Not even my earbuds. I guess I don't like their sketchy compatibility with the non-Apple world. I can't justify buying even a used/reconditioned/prior generation one just to (subjectively) improve ONE sound, especially since it's not my primary sound. Instead, I'd spend that money on a Legend 273 Soul (organ). I still love my Duo Mk111 but am concerned about getting it repaired if something should happen to it (not currently supported). Still, I'd like to hear your SWAM sax demo, so post it when you get the time.

chas
_________________________
"Faith means not wanting to know what is true." [Nietzsche]

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#508332 - 05/25/23 02:54 AM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: cgiles]
abacus Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 07/21/05
Posts: 5355
Loc: English Riviera, UK
You could always buy a keyboard where you can load VSTs (Instruments & Effects) and integrate them so that they become as one with the instrument, and have Midi features so that external modules can also become as one with the instrument, with the added advantage of getting new features and sounds for free via updates for years on end.

Example

While Apple is good it is still more limited than Windows, particularly as a lot of programs (VSTs are just programs) are still not compatible with the latest Arm versions from Apple. (When it comes to Tablets though the only option is the iPad if you want to use it for music)

Bill
_________________________
English Riviera:
Live entertainment, Real Ale, Great Scenery, Great Beaches, why would anyone want to live anywhere else (I�m definitely staying put).

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#508335 - 05/25/23 08:28 AM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: cgiles]
Diki Offline


Registered: 04/25/05
Posts: 14211
Loc: NW Florida
SWAM can run on Windows… https://kb.audiomodeling.com/en/c/compat...wam-instruments

Whether this equates to tablets I don’t know, but it should be fine on a Windows laptop…

I gig, so the idea that it runs on an iPad or iPhone is very appealing, but for the home player, or recordists who uses a DAW on a laptop or computer, it’s a damn sight cheaper than buying a Wersi!

Unfortunately, the computer version of SWAM is quite a bit more expensive than the iPad/iPhone version, but it does add quite a bit of extra capability, particularly in the area of pitch fluctuation (random or programmed imperfections of pitch, like a real horn player gets).

But personally, I think the idea that you got to buy a MASSIVELY expensive keyboard to run a $40 app in hardware is laughable, abacus.
_________________________
An arranger is just a tool. What matters is what you build with it..!

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#508337 - 05/25/23 10:47 AM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: Diki]
abacus Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 07/21/05
Posts: 5355
Loc: English Riviera, UK
Originally Posted By Diki
SWAM can run on Windows… https://kb.audiomodeling.com/en/c/compat...wam-instruments

Whether this equates to tablets I don’t know, but it should be fine on a Windows laptop…

I gig, so the idea that it runs on an iPad or iPhone is very appealing, but for the home player, or recordists who uses a DAW on a laptop or computer, it’s a damn sight cheaper than buying a Wersi!

Unfortunately, the computer version of SWAM is quite a bit more expensive than the iPad/iPhone version, but it does add quite a bit of extra capability, particularly in the area of pitch fluctuation (random or programmed imperfections of pitch, like a real horn player gets).

But personally, I think the idea that you got to buy a MASSIVELY expensive keyboard to run a $40 app in hardware is laughable, abacus.


Wersi is a low volume organ manufacture (The OAX 1 is just a single manual organ with arranger facilities like the previous generation Abacus) so will always be high priced. (They just sell a few thousand a year)
If there was enough demand then all the remining big boys could make a dedicated arranger with onboard VST facilities way cheaper.
BTW; A genos costs £4100, a Korg PAx5 £3800 and a Ketron Event £4400 with a current typical life expectancy of 5-6yrs before you loose a lot of money on them when you trade in for the latest model, whereas with a software based model would last way longer, (The previous Wersi OAS lasted for about 15yrs before being replaced with OAX, which is the equivalent of buying 3 keyboards from the big boys) and thus long term work out cheaper.
As I said my post was just an example, its up to arranger players to put pressure on the big boys to make them make something similar.

Bill
_________________________
English Riviera:
Live entertainment, Real Ale, Great Scenery, Great Beaches, why would anyone want to live anywhere else (I�m definitely staying put).

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#508338 - 05/25/23 11:14 AM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: cgiles]
cgiles Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/29/05
Posts: 6703
Loc: Roswell,GA/USA
Muhammad Ali said it best...'DIFFERENT STROKES FOR DIFFERENT FOLKS'.

I also agree with our fellow forumite Sokratis 1974 when he says "I respect your opinion" (and IMPLIED)...SO PLEASE RESPECT MINE.
We HAVE to accept the fact that music (and practically every other art form) is highly subjective and that YOUR TRUTH IS ONLY YOUR TRUTH. People think I love the organ; I DON'T!!! I love the HAMMOND organ. In fact, I only like even the Hammond in certain formats ie. Jazz or Gospel. I can barely tolerate the organ in any other format, even classical, and particularly Theatre Organ. That's why, if marooned on an island, I'd rather have a $300.00 Casio than a three manual Wersi (assuming the island had electricity smile smile ).

There is no accounting for taste. Between tradition, environment, and numerous cultural filters, it's unlikely there will ever be a 'standard' in the world of music and art. And to that I say, Amen.

chas
_________________________
"Faith means not wanting to know what is true." [Nietzsche]

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#508340 - 05/25/23 12:48 PM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: cgiles]
Diki Offline


Registered: 04/25/05
Posts: 14211
Loc: NW Florida
In defense of Wersi, it’s only that that ‘sound’ is rather expected if Wersi players that you hear it a lot. You can run a TOTL B3 VSTi in OAX and you’d be back in Hammond heaven..!

The organ scene in Europe (I was around it in the 70’s) is something that never made it big in the States, and that sound is part of it. But the organ itself is a blank slate you can flesh out with anything you like. Sadly, a five figure blank slate! And a back breaking weight thrown in for free!

But I never blame the tool. Only the craftsman… 🎹😂

As a horn player, perhaps my benchmark for where realism starts is different to many. But it’s rare to hear a sampled sax that I can’t tell in four notes it is a keyboard sound. Just as a B3 player can sniff out a sampled Hammond by the second or third note…

The thing about modeling is, you don’t really have to change how you play, or what you play (thank God! We’re all getting too old for that!), but the sound figures out the articulation you intended, and magically turns something that wouldn’t fool anyone using a sampled sound into something that even horn players have a hard time spotting as a keyboard sound. THAT’S my idea of great technology… don’t make me have to change how I play, just figure out what I MEANT to play and give me that! 🎹♥️
_________________________
An arranger is just a tool. What matters is what you build with it..!

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#508344 - 05/25/23 03:04 PM Re: Re-learning old equipment [Re: Diki]
cgiles Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/29/05
Posts: 6703
Loc: Roswell,GA/USA
Originally Posted By Diki
THAT’S my idea of great technology… don’t make me have to change how I play, just figure out what I MEANT to play and give me that! 🎹♥️


Wow Diki, do you really mean that? First of all, I prize great MUSIC over great technology. Secondly, I want an instrument to accurately play what I played, not a technology-derived version of what it THINKS I meant to play. Unless it can read minds, how the heck does it know what I MEANT to play? Unless I've had to much to drink, I PLAY what I meant to play. Wow, how soon we forget how to read, write, or incorporate the word OPINION in our posts. Here is my OPINION about the quality of our musical performances. The biggest problem I see with most of the ARRANGER performances is TASTE!!! Say it with me, T-A-S-T-E, TASTE. By that I mean, song selection, instrument selection, selected arrangement (style), and most of all, poor playing skills. When Mario Parisi (sp) demo's a keyboard, I've rarely heard anyone (even you, Diki) dwell on or even mention, any deficiencies in the keyboard; they're too busy being mesmerized by a great performance by a great player. "Uh, the Sax sound was a little off" is a phrase you'll probably NEVER hear at that demo smile smile.

Soooo, save your money and stop worrying about that 'perfect' Sax sound until after you get the rest of the tune to a listenable state. Just my .03 cents (adjusted for inflation) worth.

chas
_________________________
"Faith means not wanting to know what is true." [Nietzsche]

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