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Old 07-11-2019, 09:03 AM
newew newew is offline
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Default Using "Instrument Tracks" in Cubase with HO?

Hi board.

I've read that the optimum is to load several instruments that may share samples into a single Play instance - like you'd load several 1st Violin Long patches, as they are are likely to share at least some samples.

But watching YT videos on using Hollywood Orchestra, I've seen a few where they're using Instrument Tracks in Cubase.

That means each track has an instance of Play, and each instance of Play has only one instrument loaded in it. Sounds hard on the RAM resources.

On the other hand, using Instrument Tracks means you can Freeze any track you're not currently editing, so you could have only a single instance of Play actually using resources at a time. Super for CPU load. But I don't think freezing unloads the instrument.

Any Cubase users out there who might have experience with this? Do you find any advantages or issues?

Thanks.
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Old 07-11-2019, 07:10 PM
bigfatwombat bigfatwombat is offline
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A single play instance on a single instrument track can load multiple instruments.
I tend to load the different articulations for the same instrument into a single track, single play instance. Then use Expression maps to change articulation. Generally you don't have Violin 1s playing staccato and sustain articulations at the same time so this makes a lot of sense to group articulations into a single instrument track to me.

Much of the confusion around instrument tracks vs rack instruments is due to some very poor outdated advice kicking around about how they work. These days there isn't a lot of difference between a rack instrument and a track instrument. All can support a single VST instrument (e.g. Play), all support multiple instruments in that VSTi. All support multiple channel input and multiple channel output. Instrument tracks can even support midi in from other midi tracks, just like rack ones.

How you organise your instruments then is entirely flexible. There are possibly some minor efficiency gains to be had but for the most part they are utterly minor. I would not lose sweat over it at all. Just organise the instruments and tracks the way you like to work and don't sweat the memory and threading issues.
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Old 07-12-2019, 11:06 AM
newew newew is offline
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I like your method of one instrument track with multiple articulations of the same instrument. Makes sense, benefits from the advantages of instrument tracks, and will employ multiple Play instances to spread load around the processor cores. Of course, this means a single mixer track for all articulations of, for example, 1st violins. So - just lots of automation for levels and effects?

In the meantime I did some more reading and realized I had forgotten about the option to unload the vst instrument when freezing a track. Good ram and cpu saving - bit of a pain to reload if you have to go back and edit.

But I can't help thinking that "one track - one instance of play - one articulation" is still not the best idea. I found an old thread on this:

https://www.soundsonline-forums.com/...ad.php?t=33056

which becomes applicable to our discussion at post #8, and says pretty much that by the end.
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Old 07-12-2019, 06:47 PM
bigfatwombat bigfatwombat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newew View Post
...this means a single mixer track for all articulations of, for example, 1st violins. So - just lots of automation for levels and effects?
I use CC7 to balance the articulations and then CC11 to add dynamics. That way you can set up the articulations so they are balanced your way and everything else is dynamics which you need to add anyway.
For most of my work the effects are the same for all articulations in the same instrument group (Violins 1).
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Old 07-13-2019, 06:09 AM
newew newew is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigfatwombat View Post
I use CC7 to balance the articulations and then CC11 to add dynamics. That way you can set up the articulations so they are balanced your way and everything else is dynamics which you need to add anyway.
Very slick. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 07-14-2019, 03:52 AM
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trumpoz trumpoz is offline
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The one thing I have found (at least qith Cubase 8.5) is that using Quick controls on different outputs in Track Instruments only impacts outputs 1&2 regardless of which output they are attached to.

This doesn't happen with rack instruments.

I may be doing something wrong though.
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Old 07-14-2019, 08:05 AM
newew newew is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trumpoz View Post
The one thing I have found (at least qith Cubase 8.5) is that using Quick controls on different outputs in Track Instruments only impacts outputs 1&2 regardless of which output they are attached to.

This doesn't happen with rack instruments.

I may be doing something wrong though.
Isn't that because the idea of a Track Instrument is that it's dedicated to just that track, so it only outputs on 1&2 to the mixer channel of that track. I don't believe you can have a Track Instrument output to multiple mixer channels, as this would be counter the basic concept.
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Old 07-15-2019, 04:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newew View Post
Isn't that because the idea of a Track Instrument is that it's dedicated to just that track, so it only outputs on 1&2 to the mixer channel of that track. I don't believe you can have a Track Instrument output to multiple mixer channels, as this would be counter the basic concept.
I'm looking at a project with a number of instrument tracks outputting to up to Outputs 9&10.

In reality Instrument tracks are very similar to rack tracks.
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Old 07-15-2019, 06:58 AM
newew newew is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trumpoz View Post
I'm looking at a project with a number of instrument tracks outputting to up to Outputs 9&10.
My bad for spouting off without being sure. But I learned something! Thanks.
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Old 07-16-2019, 08:48 AM
jspencer jspencer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newew View Post

But I can't help thinking that "one track - one instance of play - one articulation" is still not the best idea. I found an old thread on this:

https://www.soundsonline-forums.com/...ad.php?t=33056

which becomes applicable to our discussion at post #8, and says pretty much that by the end.
That thread is 8 years old, things have come a long way since then. Whether or not you use one instance per instrument, or multiple, is personal preference. If you want to save resources on FX, just route all of your strings (for example) to an FX channel in Cubase; that way you are only using one single plugin for all of those instruments (ie; reverb).
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