The best sounds for Sylphyo
I've got my new Sylphyo and now I am wondering in what should I invest my money to get the best quality sounds out of it.
- SWAM instruments
- Yamaha VL-70m
- Any other hardware/software?
I am particularly interested in tin whistles/flute sounds with lowest latency. Basically I would like to understand if PC based software/sounds are better than VL-70m or any other alike devices.
Could you please recommend.
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Both the VL-70m and the SWAM instruments are based on physical modelling, however they differ in how they implement the technology.
While the VL-70m looks like a pure physical modelling engine (with lots of possibilities and control opportunities), the SWAM virtual instruments have a hybrid engine that also uses samples to make the sound more realistic (but they offer fewer sound design opportunities).
SWAM instruments are also much more recent, run on a much more powerful computer, and sound much more realistic to me.
The MIDI implementation also looks much more robust on the SWAM instruments compared to the VL-70m.
As for latency, I haven't played enough with the VL-70m to give a definitive opinion. While the VL-70m doesn't have all the latency-inducing components of a PC/Mac (USB, audio drivers, non-realtime kernel…), some physical models can be slow to react by nature (it takes time for sound waves to propagate!).
On the other hand, if you get the proper setup, the latency of a SWAM virtual instrument can become negligible. What's a proper setup? I'd say either a PC with a PCI/PCIe/Thunderbolt sound card, or a Mac with a Thunderbolt sound card, with the lowest output buffer size possible and no active audio inputs, and our recommended SWAM settings. Having MIDI through a PCI card and not USB could shave off a few milliseconds as well.
Finally, you won't find any tin whistle on the SWAM instruments, but their flute is great, and maybe you could get something close to the whistle based on their piccolo flute.
So both will play great with a Sylphyo, but then which one is best for you depends on what you find most important.
There are a few tin whistle Kontakt instruments out there -- SoundIron has one that doesn't seem to me to be particularly great, and there's one in Ventus Ethnic Winds which sounds much better, as well as a good shakuhachi.
The Ventus whistle has a complicated system for doing automatic ornaments, which I suppose is aimed more at those using keyboards. It's almost possible to do proper ornamentation on the Sylphyo anyway. All these options, and SWAM of course, usually sound a good deal more like a real instrument than a VL-70m does.
As for latency, well... the onboard Sylphyo sounds have low latency so you could route those through headphones and let the 'real' instrument on the PC lag a little.
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I use many different sound ...
with the KONTAKT 5.8 software which already contains the Kontakt Factory Library of about 1000 instruments (delivered with the purchase of Kontakt).
with the bank Kontakt ETHNO WORLD 6 from Bestservice.de
I just got my Kontakt software but I cannot set it up to work with my Sylphyo properly. No expression, no volume control etc. The instruments just do not sound right.
it is often necessary to modify the default velocity setting so that it works well with the SYLPHYO! (On almost all Kontakt instruments)
It is also necessary to reduce the number of voices to 1 instead of 32, because SYLPHYO is monophonic instrument.
How to do that? Do you have a guide or something? Thanks!
This post is deleted!
@Comrade I have recommended Ketron soundbox elsewhere on this list, and tin whistle and many other flutes are there, here is the EWI USB version. Sylphyo will be similar.