PreSonus Blog

Justin Spence doin' thangs.

Let’s step back and take a look at the big picture. Things, they are a-changin’, and while we make an effort to stay humble, facts is just that. Facts! Look:

Reviews for Studio One 2 are off the charts. Sales, too. The StudioLive series of mixers are the best-selling mixer line over at Guitar Center. (Those search results are sorted by best-selling, you see.) We’re building great partnerships with amazing companies like SoundCloudRational Acoustics and Celemony. There’s also a bunch of other stuff we can’t even tell you about yet… but you’d get to know if you joined us.

So, it seems as though somehow we are doing something correctly, which means growth, which means we need more FRESH BODIES! If the idea of mucking around with a pack of  audio nerds in the hot Louisiana sun sounds like your idea of a killer work-week, than maybe we should talk.

Here’s the type of professionals we’re looking for, click the titles for the official job descriptions:

Director of Software Development
Program Manager
Senior Industrial Designer
Mechanical Engineer
Technical Support Representative (Do your part in the fight against hold times!)

So, if you think of yourself and PreSonus as a match made in gumbo, click the above job title of your choosing, read the Job Description, and dutifully carry out the contact instructions that follow.

Please don’t call about job availability. Crystal, our HR director, is kinda slammed right now. Growth, remember?

Category Jobs | 5 Comments »
Posted by Ryan Roullard



PART II:

So, the next thing I am going to explain is how I pan the instruments properly to simulate orchestral placement for each instrument section. This is the chart I reference when panning my instruments.

Panning is where all of those stereo tracks from Kontakt (see part 1) will come in handy, because these are all sections of multiple instruments within the orchestra. Some people would use mono track for a single section and pan them left or right according to the orchestra sitting chart. That is okay, but what you have to realize that what we’re doing with virtual orchestra is that we’re SIMULATING a live orchestra setup. Those instruments are panned left or right, but their sound travels and expands in multiple directions. That’s why a stereo track is more useful.

Usually orchestras are recorded by using multiple microphone positions. For example: The entire orchestra is recorded with a Decca Tree mic setup that’s positioned behind the conductor and is picking up the full orchestra’s sound. In addition, every section of the orchestra has its own stereo mic pair that is positioned very closely to the performers.

What most audio engineers are doing in a setup like this is simply layering the full orchestra sound with close mic positions, and they mix the individual sections more easily through those close mic setups. Here’s what I do:

I use the full string section from Symphobia (e.g. Sustain strings) and layer it with LA Scoring Strings sustain patches. What I like about this approach is that Symphobia has the “room sound” and LA Scoring Strings are very dry, because of their close mic setup. Now, according to the chart above, I ould pan the Symphobia strings from -100 to +100, and individual sections of LA Scoring Strings I pan appropriately to the chart (e.g. first violins from -100 to -20, Cellos from +12.5 to +73, etc).
I repeat this process for every instrument section in the orchestra. If I was using Symphobia Brass, I would pan it from -37.5 to +37.5 according to the chart, and layer that patch with individual patches of Orchestral Brass horns, trombones, trumpets and tuba panned appropriately to their position within the orchestra. I’ve noticed that Studio One doesn’t have the option for dual panning for the stereo track, so I use Binaural Pan as an insert to take care of that problem. (Note to the developers: Make sure you include this in the next patch please!) [editor’s note: We hear you!]
Although this can be taken care of when bouncing tracks by bouncing a single stereo track as dual mono, this approach introduces a problem. If you’re applying EQ on that stereo pair, you will have to insert an EQ on both mono tracks or route the mono tracks into a stereo submix, and then apply the EQ on the submix.

As a matter of fact, that seems like a good stopping point. Next time, we’ll take a look at EQing our orchestra to minimize competition between instruments for your ear’s attention. We’ll follow that up with a few words on reverb, and how to accurately re-create our orchestra’s cavernous environ.

[Update! For your convenience, here’s the rest of the blogs in this series:

  1. Part One: Intro and DAW setup
  2. Part Two: Panning and placement of instruments
  3. Part Three: EQ
  4. Part Four: Reverb
  5. Part Five: Video

Category Studio One | 5 Comments »
Posted by Ryan Roullard



Chirp chirp peep

Music is sadly, quietly littered with many heroes whose contributions are sometimes criminally overlooked: HawkinsDaleQuorthonHaack. Every time I find out about another one of these stalwarts, I sigh quietly, gave a the ceiling, and my grey heart sheds a tear for the poor ol’  PreSonus knowledgebase.

Did you know about it? No? EXACTLY. It isn’t right that people don’t know about the knowledgebase, so go look at it, and make your little buddies look at it too. It’s over here.

Like all things PreSonus, our knowledgebase is an ever-improving labor of love, a sort of dumping ground for feats of braindom from great PreSonus minds: Spence. Hasenback. Harris. Hillman. It’s bursting at its little HTML seams with Studio One tutorials, tips for initializing pesky ASIO drivers, setting up chained FireStudio projects in ProTools 9, you name it. And it’s free, and it’s online, and accessible from your phone, and, and, and.

Point is: while we love to hear from you,  the answer to your tech support question may well have already been answered in the PreSonus Knowledgebase—and it’s worth a search.

In order to do our great knowledgebase justice, I’ve started a Twitter series called “KB’s Greatest Hits.” Starting yesterday or so, I began tweeting out links to great knowlegebase articles once-per-day. Check ‘em out, learn up, and please retweet and share! Let’s not let the PreSonus knowledgebase to be lost to history like so many great contributors.

Category Uncategorized | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan Roullard



Click above to see the video!

This pro tip comes to us from @wdkunkel, who has found a way to get PreSonus Studio One Pro 2, SampleTank, and a sustain pedal to play nicely together. Check it out!

Category Studio One | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan Roullard



Studio One is available in a number of versions: Artist, Producer, and Professional. In this video, longtime PreSonus advocate Byron Gaither breaks down not only why Studio One is right for you—but also WHICH Studio One is right for you. From bedroom producers to established rock stars, you’ve likely heard rumblings of people quitting their old DAW for PreSonus Studio One.

So, you should take a good look at this—we’ve got a version of Studio One in your size.

Category Studio One | 3 Comments »
Posted by Ryan Roullard



Here’s a sort update potpourri video. Byron’s back, and he’s taken the time to bust out a video with details on everything new in Studio One 2.0.5: The Macro Toolbar, MIDI Control of ANY command in Studio One, (WUT?) Tab-to-Transients, on and on and on. Track re-sizing.

It just keeps getting BETTER. What’s your favorite new feature in Studio One?

Category Uncategorized | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan Roullard



WAKE UP. This is important. I know that “Track Management” doesn’t have the same zing as “Transient Beat Detection,” “Groove Templates” or “Lap Dance,” but pay attention.

You kids today have too many options. One of the potential pitfalls of a DAW with unlimited tracks and drag’n’drop instrument placement is that an overzealous producer might just use too many tracks. It doesn’t take long until you have to scroll down to find your MIDI, and your audio tracks are up top, your rack tom is next to the hydrocrystalophone track, and damned if you know where the vocal is.

Proper track management avoids all this. You have a lot of options: Folder tracks, color-coding… oh, just watch the video. And go clean your room.

Category Studio One | 2 Comments »
Posted by Ryan Roullard



Byron Gaither is back, and he brought an autoclave-warm scalpel with him. This video takes a look at surgically-precise drum replacement via Melodyne, as opposed to the usual sort of dull and rusty sidechain/gate/MIDI-trigger pokery that you may-or-may-not be have developed a tolerance for. I know we’re always talking about how easy everything is in Studio One, but this strikes even me as a little ridiculous.

Seriously, don’t blink. I had to watch it twice, it went by so fast. Get yourself 50CCs of efficiency, stat.

Category Studio One | 11 Comments »
Posted by Ryan Roullard



By Nikola Jeremić

[editor’s note: Nikola is a film composer and music director who resides in Belgrade, Serbia. He came to our attention via this video which caught my attention. I invited Nikola to supply us with a blog post on composing for film… and he supplied us with enough material for about 4 posts. :) Nikola, thanks for going above and beyond. -Ryan]

I know that most of you composers out there have already committed yourselves to your most favorite DAW software, and I know how hard it is to start from scratch on something new. To tell you the truth, it was the same for me as well.

Here’s a true story: I accidentally came across PreSonus Studio One from a friend of mine who bought a PreSonus AudioBox and got Studio One bundled with it. He uses a different DAW, so I took Studio One for a test drive—and boy oh boy, was I mind-blown. I got addicted from the moment I started using it.

First of all Studio One LOOKS COOL! Second, it is totally easy to use even if you’re new to it. And last, but not least, every single track that you bounce from it sounds GREAT!

Since I am a composer myself, I like to make my own default template for writing orchestral pieces or contemporary hybrid soundtracks. It’s very easy to do that if you’re using Studio One. My default template for scoring consists of 6 instances of Native Instrument’s Kontakt that are loaded into Studio One. I have to point out that my PC is a bit older, so I can’t afford to load a bit more of virtual instruments because, believe it or not, I am using a 32bit Windows 7 based PC with 3.5GB of RAM and Intel Dual Core processor.

My main orchestral library is Symphobia. I’ve chosen it because it covers everything that I need, and it sounds great. I am layering the string section of Symphobia with LA Scoring Strings, Symphobia’s brass with Orchestral Brass Classic and Symphobia’s Woodwinds section with EastWest Symphonic Orchestra Woodwinds. My percussions are mostly from True Strike library, and my choir is Requiem Light.

Now then, having said that, my template is rather simple, yet very effective. Why 6 instances of Kontakt you wonder? My default template has strings, brass, woodwinds, choir & vocals, percussions and the sixth one is for other types of non-orchestral instruments. Every one of the 6 sections has its own Kontakt, and every Kontakt that’s loaded has 16 MIDI channels and lots of outputs (I’m using 16 stereo outputs in every Kontakt), so I’m using 16 instrument tracks for every Kontakt that’s loaded. And of course, they are all nicely sorted out into folders. So it’s a total of 96 instrument tracks. And here’s how my default edit window looks like when it opens up:

Default Edit Window

I’ve marked the sections of the orchestra in different colors for easier orientation. Strings are brown, brass is yellow, woodwinds are green, choir & vocals are blue, percussions are white and those other instruments are red. It’s easier to spot them when they’re in different colors if you are working with a big orchestral template. Of course, you can use your own color patterns as you see fit.

Easy on the eyes.

Studio One integrates with third-party VST instruments very easily. When you’ve created your desired number of tracks and sorted them out into folders, next thing that you should do is patch the instruments’ inputs into proper MIDI channels and route Kontakt patches into proper Kontakt outputs.

For example: I’ve named my string section tracks as Strings 1 – 16, and I’ve assigned them to their proper MIDI channels 1-16 to match the channels of Kontakt. I’ve also named the Kontakt instance for string section as “Strings”, so I know that it’s only using string patches. Strings 1 are using MIDI channel 1 of Kontakt, and the patch output inside Kontakt is routed into channel output 1 of Kontakt, as you can see on the picture shown. And that goes for every channel of every section in every instance of Kontakt.

Kontakt Strings Routing

Of course, I will rename the tracks properly when I have decided which articulations and which instrument from the section I am going to use for the project. And that varies from project to project. That is why I am naming the tracks as 1,2,3,4 etc. in each section. For example: String tracks are named “Strings 1”, “Strings 2”, etc. you get the point.

Kontakt Strings Patch

Next, activate those Kontakt outputs to be used as individual tracks in Studio One Console (Mixer). Here’s how you do it: You open the Console view (default is F3) and click on the bottom left side where it says “instr.”

Instrument Panel

Now the list of all of your loaded VST instruments will show. Click on the little arrow pointing down to the left of your first Kontakt and click “expand” on the drop-down menu. You have to check out all the channels of Kontakt that you want to use in order to be shown in the Console Window.

Expand the VST instrument channel

Repeat the same process for other instances of Kontakt hosting other orchestra sections and you’re good to go. When you want to save your template, the only thing that you need to do is click File/Save As Template, and name that template as you see fit. Every time you start a new orchestral session, you can load your template from the menu that opens up when you’re creating a new song. That’s pretty much how I do it.

So, to summarize it all: Create a new song and set up the options how you want it (my setup is on 48 kHz, 24 bit because that’s the standard sound setup when you’re writing music for video). Next you load a desired number of Kontakts that you want (or other samplers that you’re using), and create a desired number of instruments tracks for it. Sort out everything into folders and mark the tracks in different colors. Open the console view, select “instr.”, and check all the VST instrument outputs that you want to be active in the session. Finally, save the template and name it as you like. That’s it. Later on when you’re adding patches into Kontakt you will select the MIDI channel for the patch and assign the patch output to appropriate Kontakt output and rename the track in edit window.

Next post: we will pan our virtual orchestra across the stereo image using an orchestra chart for reference and apply reverb—and get these VSTs sounding just like the real thing!

[Update! For your convenience, here’s the rest of the blogs in this series:

  1. Part One: Intro and DAW setup
  2. Part Two: Panning and placement of instruments
  3. Part Three: EQ
  4. Part Four: Reverb
  5. Part Five: Video

 

Category Studio One | 5 Comments »
Posted by Ryan Roullard



PreSonus TechTalk Live is on again today!
Tune in today for a presentation on Ampire XT and IR Maker in Studio One, starring Alex Cronex.
2 p.m. CST / 3 p.m. EST / Noon PST / 9:00 GMT

http://www.presonus.com/community/presonuslive/

Today on Tech Talk Live: PreSonus AmpireXT Sound Designer Alex Cronex will present a detailed discussion of all the new amplifier and cabinet modeling technology in Studio One 2.05! He and Justin Spence will also take a close look at the oft-overlooked IR Maker, which allows you to create your own impulse responses of real-life cabinets and microphones, and use them virtually in your recordings!

Category Uncategorized | 0 Comments »
Posted by Ryan Roullard