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pro's and con's of dry sample sets

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Anton Heger


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pro's and con's of dry sample sets

PostFri Dec 14, 2007 4:44 pm

Positive wrote in an other topic:
Does dry mean no multiple releases ?

As far as I understood, multiple releases are important because of a carefull handling of the reverb in the church.
Multiple releases however, increases also the demands for computer recourses like memory while the the reverb-part of the samples also asks for processor power and a huge polyphony.

For me, the dry sample set of the Litomysl organ proves that one can be satisfied with a completely dry organ too.
And in that case: one has enough when one has a low-end PC (i.e. P4 3 Ghz), 3 GB of memory and the Basic version of Hauptwerk.

Dry samplesets have their own big advantages, IMO.

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PostFri Dec 14, 2007 5:29 pm

One thing about wet samples with multiple releases...

In rapid passages they use up less polyphony because the staccato tail isn't sounding for as long as one for a held note would sound.
This is really noticeable in a piece like Widor's Toccata. Without multiple releases this piece tends to use up a huge amount of polyphony to the point of causing breakup. However with multiple releases and the same registration, no problem.
This breakup was true for me using the Prof. Maier's D-C-C organ before all the pipes had multiple releases. With the revised organ, all was well.
Besides which, a wet organ with multiple releases just sounds so much better,i.e., more realistic.



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PostFri Dec 14, 2007 6:55 pm

I like them "moist", with just a second or two of reverb. Too much reverb doesn't sound right in the context, and artificial reverb just doesn't work for me.

The extremely dry samples I've heard (through their MP3s, the only method of trying them out) tend to sound artifically chopped off.

On the other hand, I like extremely dry champagne, and I hope to enjoy some in a couple of weeks!


Jonathan Taylor


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Wet n Dry Samplesets

PostFri Dec 14, 2007 8:18 pm

All should try using convolution reverb for the dry sets.. It is far more accurate than any "artificial" reverb could ever be. If you own a mac than try LA Convolver and apply Jiris' impulse responses (16 bits are free). The convolver can be plugged into audio hijack pro. For Windows try Convolver v4.4 (VST). I would love to hear others suggestions for convolvers in mac and Windows.
"The organ is in my eyes and ears the king of all instruments," Mozart in 1777



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PostSat Dec 15, 2007 1:00 am

Am I correct in assuming that the problem with convolution reverb is that it can't be used in real-time, or have computers progressed to the point where this is no longer an issue?

Are there any hardware convolution reverb solutions?


Anton Heger


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PostSat Dec 15, 2007 3:46 am

Am I correct in assuming that the problem with convolution reverb is that it can't be used in real-time

It can be used in real time.
On my low-end P4, I can use Litomysl will all stops on together with Reaper/Pristine Space. Latency is negligable and the sound is very good IMO. Reaper uses on my machine in this case not more than 15% processor time.
And using a headpone, the sound of a mono sampleset is very attractive because it is just like a real stereo sound, due to Reaper/Pristine Space.

From this place, I want to thank Jiri for this new and very innovative sollution he proposed to get a satisfying reverb with dry sample sets.

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PostSat Dec 15, 2007 8:45 am

A very important thing to remember is that a convolver places an audio channel fed into it at a single point in the virtual acoustic. So if you use a dry sample set with stereo output and feed that into a convolver then you'll hear the sound come from only two points in the virtual acoustic (with the L and R channels corresponding to the positions of the two microphones used when recording the impulse response, or the virtual microphones if it was synthesized).

From a theoretical point of view, to get the same spatial impression that a wet sample set can give (which allows the brain to separate the pipe sounds more clearly because of their slight differences in acoustic, and gives an increase in perceived clarity as a result), i.e. with each pipe emanating from a different point in the virtual acoustic, you would need one convolver instance and a separate impulse response, per pipe.

Current computers can't handle that many convolutions for organs of any realistic size, so there is inevitably always a compromise in terms of clarify and spatial impression by using convolution, when compared to wet sampling. The situation is basically the same as using dry sample sets in a real acoustic (the more amplification channels, corresponding to the more simultaneous convolvers, the more realistic the virtual acoustic and the higher the perceived clarity).

However, of course wet sampling has other compromises (tremulants are less realistic, no ability to adjust the reverb/acoustic, more memory required, etc.). There are lots of previous forum posts discussing the pros and cons at length, e.g.:

Best regards,

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