Old 11-25-2010, 12:37 AM   #1
koenr
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Default MIDI pitch bend range

I'm using Reaper to create MP3 files to play along to my drum practice sessions. Here's my workflow:

1. Find a Guitar Pro file (there are tons of them, I usually use the Ultimate Guitar website).
2. Load the file in TuxGuitar (see remarks at the bottom).
3. Export the file to MIDI.
4. Import the MIDI file into Reaper. Always use the "Multichannel item on a single track" option.
5. Add "instruments" to each track, I prefer the excellent SFZ SoundFont player. I usually delete any Program Change MIDI events, so I can freely choose instruments myself.
6. Muck about with effects and faders until you have something that sounds reasonably well.
7. Mute the drums track. Of course, if you're practicing playing the guitar or piano, mute the relevant track.
8. Export the whole thing as an MP3 file (or whichever format you prefer).

My main problem is that Guitar Pro files seem to assume a pitch bind range of 12 semitones, whereas SFZ uses a (fixed?) pitch bend range of 2 semitones. I still haven't found a way to get around this, so for every track that uses pitch bends, I use the Phenome SoundFont player. It lacks the same sound quality as the SFZ player, but has an easily adjustable pitch bend range. If anyone knows how to set the pitch bend range in SFZ, I'd be much obliged. I secretly hope one day Reaper will include a high quality built-in SoundFont player, much like LMMS does (and probably most other DAW's).

P.S. I originally purchased Guitar Pro 6, but recently discovered the (free!) TuxGuitar software, and find its MIDI export function magnitudes better than GP6. The latter doesn't seem to export pitch bends and vibratos (or I'm too stupid to figure out how).
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Old 11-25-2010, 03:47 AM   #2
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Phenome has several Quality modes, try to change them. To me it's better than SFZ by far.
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Old 11-25-2010, 05:06 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilDragon View Post
Phenome has several Quality modes, try to change them. To me it's better than SFZ by far.
As a simple SF player, I prefer Sfz (especially the special Reaper version of Sfz).
I tried Phenome and came back to Sfz.
You can see what I mean if you make this test :
Load any Vibraphone SF2 in both Phenome and Sfz.
In Sfz I ear a vibra. If I let down the key the sound stops normally at the end of the resonance.
In Phenome I get the attack of a vibra but without vibrato.
And if I let down the key the sound continues as if it were an organ.
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Old 11-25-2010, 06:49 AM   #4
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I believe the PitchBend range is a setting in the soundfont file. If that's so, you can change that aspect using a soundfont editor.

I am not at all into Soundfonts, but there's a good chance there are "players" which can change the pitch range from their own GUI (can phenome do that maybe?).
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Old 11-25-2010, 07:10 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zblogny View Post
As a simple SF player, I prefer Sfz (especially the special Reaper version of Sfz).
The what? Where could I find that?
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Old 11-25-2010, 09:04 AM   #6
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http://chambily.com/sfz_reaper.dll

And you can improve Sfz's efficiency with Sfz Buddy :

http://www.asseca.com/nicfit/sfz_buddy.html

which adds access to some hidden parameters (adsr enveloppe, reverb, chorus, etc)
(Load it before Sfz)
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Last edited by Zblogny; 11-25-2010 at 09:18 AM.
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Old 12-06-2010, 10:48 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gofer View Post
I believe the PitchBend range is a setting in the soundfont file. If that's so, you can change that aspect using a soundfont editor.

I am not at all into Soundfonts, but there's a good chance there are "players" which can change the pitch range from their own GUI (can phenome do that maybe?).
Pitch bend range is defined in the GM standard and not in the SoundFont file. You can set it with both CC#100&101 (RPN LSB&MSB) first to 0 and then adjust the range with CC#6 (Data Entry MSB) in semitones. As you can see, it can get moderately complicated so most all softsynths these days go the easy way don't support these commands at all (even advanced ones like Kontakt imo).

I've not seen a softsynth/sampler that does 24 or 36 range pitch bends... ...other than the very basic Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth (if you're in Windows). You can easily test this, it plays those files right from the box.
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Old 12-06-2010, 01:31 PM   #8
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pitchbend range is usually a function specific to the sound module (soft or hardware) that you are using, so it needs to be changed in the sound module for the most part. Kinda tough when you either dont know how or it is not supported...

Roland modules and software synths suport this very well so if push comes to shove the roland virtual sound canvas is cheap nad has decent sounds.
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Old 12-06-2010, 04:32 PM   #9
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Well, like you said Roland modules and most hardware synths from the last 20 years or so are General Midi compatible and they come with a GM/Midi chart that lists every CC/parameter they respond to so no need to guess... and Pitch bend range is defined in GM. They can also have some specific parameters which can be controlled via NRPN.
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Old 12-07-2010, 06:21 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zblogny View Post
http://chambily.com/sfz_reaper.dll

And you can improve Sfz's efficiency with Sfz Buddy :

http://www.asseca.com/nicfit/sfz_buddy.html

which adds access to some hidden parameters (adsr enveloppe, reverb, chorus, etc)
(Load it before Sfz)
Sweet. This is really a slick little player.
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Old 04-18-2019, 06:56 AM   #11
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Is there a fix for this issue?
When importing some midi files with a lot of pitch bending the song gets out of tune once imported into reaper. But it sounds fine when played in windows media player (Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth) or quicktime. FL studio and Lmms has the same problem. But seems to be working in Reason. Whats the cause for this problem? Something with the pitch bend range in Reaper?

Heres an example of a midi file with this issue:
http://www.filedropper.com/midiexamplepitchbendissue

Plays best in Quicktime, but also works in Windows Media player.
Then hear how it sounds once imported to Reaper.

Thanks in advance

Last edited by HerrKung; 04-18-2019 at 07:50 AM.
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Old 04-19-2019, 06:56 AM   #12
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Anyone know how to fix this?
Is it possible?

Happy Easter!
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Old 04-19-2019, 10:12 AM   #13
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Pitch bend range is adjusted using RPN messages, and a lot of plugins don't support those.
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Old 04-19-2019, 02:47 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilDragon View Post
Pitch bend range is adjusted using RPN messages, and a lot of plugins don't support those.
RPN messages? Whats that? But isnt it just GM and soundfonts in Reaper?
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Old 04-19-2019, 10:58 PM   #15
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http://www.philrees.co.uk/nrpnq.htm

It's a part of MIDI specification, and yes, General MIDI uses it. Your soundfont player would need to support RPN message to adjust the pitch bend range properly.
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Old 04-20-2019, 12:17 AM   #16
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With what are you playing the MIDI files in Reaper?
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Old 04-20-2019, 11:06 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nofish View Post
With what are you playing the MIDI files in Reaper?
Using http://www.synthfont.com/
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Old 04-20-2019, 11:08 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilDragon View Post
http://www.philrees.co.uk/nrpnq.htm

It's a part of MIDI specification, and yes, General MIDI uses it. Your soundfont player would need to support RPN message to adjust the pitch bend range properly.
Has synthfont support for RPN?
Which soundfonts has accurate pitch bend range?
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Old 04-20-2019, 11:25 AM   #19
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I don't know if that plugin has support for RPN. Ask the developers?

Also not sure if SoundFonts themselves need to have specified pitch bend range or not. And I certainly don't know out of thousands of available SoundFonts which would be the right ones for the job.

You should probably use a General MIDI plugin like Roland's Sound Canvas, or Yamaha's S-YXG50, the latter one you can get for free (just google it). And those two for sure support pitch bend range adjustment via RPN.
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Old 04-21-2019, 01:26 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilDragon View Post

You should probably use a General MIDI plugin like Roland's Sound Canvas, or Yamaha's S-YXG50, the latter one you can get for free (just google it). And those two for sure support pitch bend range adjustment via RPN.
Installed syxg50 and it seems to be working now. Thanks!
However it doesnt seem to include any gm soundbanks?
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Old 04-21-2019, 02:51 AM   #21
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It is not a soundfont player. It supports GM and Yamaha's XG soundsets.
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Old 04-21-2019, 04:36 AM   #22
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Isnt soundfont players a midi plugin? Whats the diffrence?
Any recommendations on soundsfonts working with syxg50 or does it need an extra soundfont player? Thought the gm soundsets were standard and free?
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Old 04-21-2019, 10:22 AM   #23
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You're confusing two things: support for General MIDI standard (including all those extra messages like RPN for pitch bend range etc.) and soundfonts. They are not the same thing.
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Old 04-22-2019, 12:03 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilDragon View Post
You're confusing two things: support for General MIDI standard (including all those extra messages like RPN for pitch bend range etc.) and soundfonts. They are not the same thing.
Ah, yes im a bit confused about the terms and what is what.

Soundfonts is just the sounds? Do they include samples or information for the midi synthesizers?
Syxg50 is just a general midi plugin then and not a midi synthesizer or soundfont player?

Diffrence between a soundfont player and a midi synthesizer?
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Old 04-22-2019, 01:37 AM   #25
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Soundfonts just contain samples and synthesis parameters (envelopes, LFOs, etc.). They don't have to be General MIDI compatible at all.

S-YXG50 is a General MIDI plugin with its own built-in soundbank and it doesn't play soundfonts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HerrKung View Post
Diffrence between a soundfont player and a midi synthesizer?
Soundfont player only loads soundfonts and responds to MIDI. MIDI synthesizer responds to MIDI (NOT necessarily General MIDI!) but can generate its sound in many different ways.
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Old 04-22-2019, 04:50 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHA View Post
Pitch bend range is defined in the GM standard and not in the SoundFont file. You can set it with both CC#100&101 (RPN LSB&MSB) first to 0 and then adjust the range with CC#6 (Data Entry MSB) in semitones. As you can see, it can get moderately complicated so most all softsynths these days go the easy way don't support these commands at all (even advanced ones like Kontakt imo).
If we wanted to add this to ReaSynth, to set the pitch bend range to one octave, we'd have it listen for:
B0 65 00
B0 64 00 (simultaneously)
B0 06 0C (not necessarily simultaneously)

Is that right? Is this meant to leave the active parameter "open" so that any subsequent CC6 message will set the range again, until B0 65 7B B0 64 7B is received?

Also, is this intended to set pitch bend range per channel (B0 vs B1, etc)?
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Old 04-22-2019, 05:37 AM   #27
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Yes, RPNs are per MIDI channel, and yes, usually you'd want to leave it "open". Particularly since you probably won't need to add support for any other RPN to your plugins.

If you guys at some point add RPN and NRPN lanes to MIDI editor, there should be a preference for leaving parameters open or terminating them, I would assume. Or, perhaps, a better solution would be Reaper handling all the RPN address setting up depending on how many (N)RPN addresses are used and if there are any simultaneous changes or not.
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Old 04-22-2019, 06:53 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schwa View Post
Is that right?
Is this meant to ?
Also, is this intended to set pitch bend range per channel (B0 vs B1, etc)?
wow-lolz--really schwa?
yeayea--it alll makes sense noowwww... appears as an epic fail on cockitupos behalf....
blimey, after all these years of midi spec,and now asking *users* how it all goes? =
*1 has to wonder no more*
lolz..
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Old 04-23-2019, 12:20 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilDragon View Post
Soundfonts just contain samples and synthesis parameters (envelopes, LFOs, etc.). They don't have to be General MIDI compatible at all.

S-YXG50 is a General MIDI plugin with its own built-in soundbank and it doesn't play soundfonts.



Soundfont player only loads soundfonts and responds to MIDI. MIDI synthesizer responds to MIDI (NOT necessarily General MIDI!) but can generate its sound in many different ways.
Ok

Another question:
When I try to edit a imported midi file in reaper like changing volumes, it reverts back to its orginal volume as i press stop and click play again.
The same thing happens when changing GM instruments. Really annoying. Why? Is the settings locked in some way?
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Old 04-23-2019, 02:10 PM   #30
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There are options for resetting MIDI CCs in Preferences->Audio->Playback.
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Old 04-23-2019, 02:42 PM   #31
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Bri1: Lighten up... Justin & Schwa are just a coupla bright kids, not old enough to remember the MIDI warz back in the day.
FWIW I am secretly glad I can do pitch-bends within many of my preferred VSTi using a virtual wheel... Have been fettling a bunch of my older SMFs recently so I can go do some solo gigs and my eyeballs have been glazing over just looking at all the anal-retentive micro programming I used to do in those sequences in an (unsuccessful) attempt to get it sounding realistic.
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