Back to the music writing and it's all changed!!
#835138 - 22/05/10 02:30 PM
I used a write music a fair bit of time ago, now it's time to get back
into it. Things have changed a fair bit so I'm in need of some advice! With the following
kit what would you recommend to get me back up to date? I will need a sequencer and would
like to use the power of the newer instruments to make more interesting dance based music.
I favour ease of use over functionality, I really hate spending hours messing around with
a sound and not actually writing anything. I'd like to use sample but generally used to
write things note by note in midi with every drum hit and note programmed in cubase (a
very simple old version). I want simple to use software not highly complex multi function
stuff that'll take a degree to master. I love controllers and being able to tweak simply
without masses of setup.
Music writing: Possibly songs but electronic
instruments and vocals only, low posibility that I'll record guitar.
Kit: Spirit Studio 16 mixer (has Mic Pre-amps in it) PC laptop Acer 2ghz dual
core with Vista Synths: Novation Supernova. AN1X. CS6X. + couple of others Midi: Midisport 8 (8 channels support) Sampler: Yamaha A5000 Monitoring: Very
high quality stereo with stereo DAC Microphone: Basic one but ok.
think I need: Sequencer (Cubase?) Soundcard, Steinberg MR816? or something
cleverer such as Yamaha's mixers (don't know which) that does the lot and interfaces with
Cubase. Controllers for Cubase. Virtual instruments? New sampler? Has
variphrase from Roland been mastered yet?
Re: Back to the music writing and it's all changed!!
[Re: Tim F]
#842173 - 24/06/10 03:28 PM
How many simultaneous inputs and outputs do you need in your computer? If you're layering
things one at a time, then you only really need a stereo audio interface. If you're
looking to track several synths at once, you'll need more.
interfaces now come bundled with a free 'lite' version of a sequencer — usually Cubase,
Sonar, Reaper or Ableton Live. Personally, given the programming MIDI emphasis, I'd be
looking for something with Sonar or Cubase, but any should do the job. If you need
something more fully featured, then I'd be inclined to try Reaper, which is free for the
initial download, though I don't find the MIDI as good as on Cubase.
MIDI interfacing if you're using external synths but programming from the computer. But a
£7 USB jobby off eBay will probably do the job if needs be and there isn't one on your
There are plenty of decent freebie soft synths and effects, as well
as some decent ones bundled in all of the above sequencers if you can be bothered to take
the time to learn to use them — the interfaces aren't always so appealing as the paid
for plug-ins, but the sounds can be good. Those in Sonar have particularly impressed
The one good bit of software I'd be inclined to pay for is a sampler. NI
Kontakt seems to me to be far and away the best available, with the added bonus that a lot
of commercial sample libraries come in that format.
...so you really don't need
an awful lot more than you already have: stereo or more IO interface; bundled sequencer or
Reaper; MIDI interface (if not already on the audio interface) and Kontakt or similar.