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  1. thomas
  2. Sherlock Holmes The Voice
  3. Vintage Yamaha Synths
  4. Thursday, 27 June 2019
Two questions:
1) Is this technology used / built into any Motif or Montage series later than ES (expanded using PLG board)?
2) As far as MIDI breath controllers to use with PLG VL board on the ES, is the MRTaudio Headset a compatible alternative to the Yamaha BC3A? Thus looks like a standard MIDI USB controller I didn't know if VL uses standard MIDI controllers like what would run thru a USB on the MRTaudio controller or is it proprietary running only thru BC3A 3.5mm input jack on the back of the ES.
Responses (8)
Bad Mister
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
1) Is this technology used / built into any Motif or Montage series later than ES (expanded using PLG board)?
No. The VL was introduced in 1993 and was available in some form or other through 2007. Available in the VL1, VL7, VL-1m, VL-70m, EX5, EX5R, PLG100-VL and the PLG150-VL.

2) As far as MIDI breath controllers to use with PLG VL board on the ES, is the MRTaudio Headset a compatible alternative to the Yamaha BC3A? Thus looks like a standard MIDI USB controller I didn't know if VL uses standard MIDI controllers like what would run thru a USB on the MRTaudio controller or is it proprietary running only thru BC3A 3.5mm input jack on the back of the ES.
The PLG-boards were used in a variety of XG/GM products as well as the Modular Synthesis Plugin System synths (S80, CS6x, CS6R, S30, Motif, Motif-Rack, S90, Motif ES, Motif-Rack ES, S90 ES)

Sorry, I don’t know about the MRTaudio device or how it works in all aspects... you should contact them for specifics.

The Breath Control is apart of the MIDI Spec... MW is CC1, Breath Control is CC2. It’s about as standard a Control as it gets...
The difference between the device you mention and a Yamaha BC is the Yamaha BC3 connects to the Keyboard as a Controller (through a dedicated port)... while the other device connects via MIDI In.

I’m not sure exactly how that impacts what you can do with it as a controller, how it merges data? Specifically, how the data is merged when recorded or attempting to record a performance... for that you should contact them or someone who has used it.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Vintage Yamaha Synths
  3. # 1
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Ok, would it be correct to understand that VL board works off of standard MIDI specs whether coming from a dedicated controller such as the BC3A or any standard MiDI CC2 mapped breath device. The magic is what the VL board does with the CC2 info to create such amazing reproductions.... Correct?

I was curious about this because I read of other Motif XS / XF talking talking about using BC voicing which I didn't think was possible, at least not though any VL tech....
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Vintage Yamaha Synths
  3. # 2
Bad Mister
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
There is Breath Control and then there is VL Breath Control. As we were fond of saying during the VL Era, “Nothing rewards your Breath Input like VL!”

And this is because the technology, physical modeling, is not just changing volume as you apply breath pressure. The timbre and character of the sound changes in a fashion consistent with a column of air in a pipe. VL could be fashioned to do Single Reeds, Jet Reeds (flutes), Lip Reeds (Brass) and did a good job with Double Reeds (although mostly via program tricks)... it also did a bowed string — the math of a bowed string is very similar to the math of a single pipe supporting a column of air in motion.

As you over blow there is a corresponding change in pitch behavior. VL had an embouchure parameter that when manipulated caused the appropriate change in pitch. Jet Reeds jump an octave when you overblow, Lip Reeds jump to the next higher harmonic as you tighten the embouchure.

BC on synth sounds get the volume change part but miss all the other behavioral functions that happen in an acoustic simulation like VL. It is a physical model... this means the same as a flight simulator is virtually flying, blowing a BC into a VL is virtually playing the instrument model.

In a flight simulator you bank the controls the room itself, tilts (like a Disney ride).
In the VL when apply Breath Control the instrument being modeled will “behave” exactly as the real thing. Too little air in the column you will be flat, too much air the sound jumps harmonics.

Samples unfortunately have a predetermined harmonic content.
VL has no samples, nothing pre-recorded, you have direct input to the resulting sound... bad input, bad output. You can sound like a beginning trumpet player if you do not maintain proper breath pressure. You cannot play notes below Bb2 on a trumpet because the ‘horn’ doesnt Support it mathematically.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Vintage Yamaha Synths
  3. # 3
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Thanks Phil, For all the info.... Can I ask a question about the math supporting the model? You said that you can't play notes on a trumpet below Bb2...Does the model accordingly limit actual voicing to the keyboard to the actual range of whatever VL instrument I choose? In other words, you cant play either higher or lower than the actual physical instrument? I like to think I try to stay within the actual range of whatever instrument I select; however, I never stopped to figure out whether or not I am always playing within range. I just let my ear be the judge.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Vintage Yamaha Synths
  3. # 4
Bad Mister
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
The mathematics of musical acoustics are in full play. The modeled Trumpet’s lowest ‘steady’ note is Bb, if you play an A you will hear the instrument’s mathematics does not support that note. The “Embouchure” parameter was on the second MW, it would be used to tighten the lips — you could play the Trumpet’s harmonic series right there on the wheel... as you moved the wheel up, you’d here the pitch become unsteady, then jump to the next harmonic.

The more accurate the model, the more the range is determined by the characteristics of the instrument.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Vintage Yamaha Synths
  3. # 5
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As a former Yamaha Product Specialist, demonstrator and clinician for Yamaha Europe between 1992-2002, who has been using VL1 since 1993 as one of the first musicians in the world, and still using 2 VL1, 2 VL1m, VL engines in my 3 EX5 and VL plugin cards I have to add something to this.
Mathematical model doesn't include the range of instruments, so it's possible to play for example trumpet in any range. Of course it is possible to set the exact range of instrument if somebody wants it. But the power of VL engine is exactly in the possibility to go far from the basic models, and even to combine different drivers and resonators for creating artificial, non existing syncoustic instruments. Thanks to the breath controller, velocity, aftertouch, two sliders, three wheels and four pedals it's possible to control every aspect of the sound to create very authentic emulations of various acoustic or electro-acoustic instruments - when performer knows also something about the voicing, textures, modulations, articulation, style, scales and typical melodic and rhythmic elements etc. of the emulated originals. Even syncoustic and electronic sounds sound very natural, like acoustic instruments. This is the main point with VL1 and the reason why I like it so much. Until now there isn't such instrument, VL is quite unique even after so many years.
BTW I have worked also with polyphonic VP1. In 1997 I have recorded double CD with my improvisations with factory patches - "VP1 Impressions". AFAIK it is the only record done exclusively with this miraculous instrument. VP1 creates its sound by other physical model than VL1. Some works from this album can be heard on my Soundclick page <http://www.soundclick.com/forrotronics>.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Vintage Yamaha Synths
  3. # 6
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Daniel,

You are so correct in power of the VL1 being 'extending the model' beyond the basics. During the development of it, I'd engage Toshi in discussions of what the model was designed to do and what it wasn't. Then I'd go and try to create a sound or behavior that he thought shouldn't be possible. I ended up suprising him quite a bit in making sounds that fell outside what he thought were the capabilities of the model. "Mr. Zero" in the factory presets in one example of still getting a sound with the reed slit, short length, tube bore and a few other things set to zero which in theory shouldn't work, but it does and is an interesting & quirky sound.

Taking that concept in a more conventional sound design approach showed that one key to really cool VL sounds is having parameters set so the model is right on the edge of stability. This is what makes the VL so 'alive' and playable.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Vintage Yamaha Synths
  3. # 7
Bad Mister
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Taking that concept in a more conventional sound design approach showed that one key to really cool VL sounds is having parameters set so the model is right on the edge of stability. This is what makes the VL so 'alive' and playable.
It is that being on that edge that is so very powerful. The ability to execute a believable violin phrase (which takes a fair amount of practice) is enhanced by walking the tightrope of stability. Example, Embouchure (downward bow pressure) has to be manipulated along with speed of air flow into the BC... not enough airflow the note become unsteady. One of my favorite presentation demos was a badly played violin (thanks to Jack Benny for putting that earworm into society) I’d play the sound of a horsehair bow being dragged slowly and unsteadily across the cat gut string, resulting in a very convincing beginner violinist ... then by manipulating bow pressure and speed, turn it into an authentic sounding well executed violin tone.

The point for those hearing this was clear, unlike a sample, which plays the same every time, with VL and Breath Control it was a living, breathing (pun intended) musical experience. If you practiced, you got better on another whole level... breath controlling a sample is not even remotely similar.

Thanks, Manny!
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Vintage Yamaha Synths
  3. # 8
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