The Null Device
Posts matching tags 'midi'
It's about time somebody did something like this: Japanese synth maker Korg have announced a series of laptop-sized USB music controllers. The nanoSeries, as they call it, includes a 25-key MIDI keyboard, a 12-pad drum controller with X/Y pad and a mixing controller with 9 faders, 9 knobs, 18 switches and transport controls; all of these will be about 13 inches in width and will come with download codes for light versions of music software; according to these UK retailers, this series is expected to arrive in October 2008, costing between £49 and £59 each.
A company in North Carolina claims to have solved one of the hard problems of audio processing: how to transcribe recorded music with chords into note data. They claim to have successfully transcribed recordings of a Glenn Gould performance of the Goldberg Variations into (a high-resolution variant of) MIDI.
Each voice was controlled by two hamsters: one that was responsible for adjusting the rhythmic qualities of the melody and another that modified the note sequence. With all of these elements in combination, an output was produced with very musical qualities.
I wonder whether the hamsters actually responded to the sound, introducing feedback into the system, or merely acted as a source of randomness.
Some hints for those wishing to compose polyphonic ringtones that work with Nokia phones:
- Get this PDF file; it describes, among other things, which instrument sounds are available and which ones are mapped to other things. So if your harpsichord ends up sounding like a grand piano, you'll know why.
- A General MIDI sound module doesn't sound like a Nokia phone, though it's close enough for testing (especially if you keep in mind what's mapped to what). The godawful Universal Sound Module softsynth that comes with Cubase is useful enough for this task.
- If your tone won't play on your phone, it's probably too large; try cutting it down a bit. I think the limit (for the Nokia 3200, at least) is somewhere betwen 8 and 15K.
- Remember: it's a ringtone. Get rid of any intros, elaborate filigrees and buildups and get to the meat of it. It's probably going to play only for a few seconds (unless you're the kind of wanker who lets their phone ring out so that everybody on the train can hear how k3wl your tone is, of course, in which case you should probably be garrotted).