Bank select, VMS

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Posts: 12
Joined: January 23, 2018 - 18:11
Bank select, VMS

Bank select, VMS, (.Ove4)

Hi.

1) When I look at some .sf2 file in 'polysynth' I see some patches are made to be banks. (I.e set as 032-[1/128], instead of 000-[1/128].)

2) In my score prog (.OVE4), when using VMS, I can not see bank controller choices ('0-32' etc) when I click on the 'banks' pulldowns.

I use to see banks choices in those pulldowns, when using other external devices.

Is VMS unable to access banks in the sf2 files?

My instinct says "VMS does access sf2 banks". In that case can someone point me to an explantion that shows how to access banks in OVE4 when using VMS? My score prog 'HELP' is useless at explaining banks.

Posts: 71
Joined: September 25, 2013 - 16:38
Re: Bank select, VMS

I do not know 'OVE4' and Google also could not give relevant results so I can only help with some general guidelines:

Yes, Bassmidi/VMS and SF2 soundfonts support 128 banks. 127 melodic banks and 1 drum/percussion bank.

Sequencers/DAWs and 'Score proggs' has no means to get the capabilities of a Midi out port. So they cannot tell if a port supports banks or not and what way is supported if any (GS like Bank MSB only addressing or XG like Bank MSB + Bank LSB addressing etc.) So usually in a Sequencer/DAW you can tell the program how to handle a given port. E.g in Cakewalk/Sonar you can use instrument definition(.ins) files. In other programs you can associate presets with ports. In this case a Roland GS, Roland Sound Canvas or something similar is usually the best choice for SF2 soundfont synths since the bank addressing mode (Bank MSB only) is the same.

If you cannot find such presets there is usually still a 'raw' approach. Namely in every DAW/Sequencer I know there is a raw Midi Events view where you can insert raw Midi events/messages to tracks. In such a view you should select 'Controller 0' (meaning Bank Select MSB) and the value of the bank you would like to reach in the SF2 file. So in case of Bank 32 insert Controller 0 with value of 32. It's important to know that Bank Select MSB (CC# 0) messages only have a meaning together with Program Change messages. So after you have inserted a Bank Select MSB (CC# 0) you should also insert a Program Change message for Bank Select messages to take effect. If you are testing with full GM/GS SF2 files I usually recommend the last program (Bank Select MSB 0, Program 127 in case of 0 based numbering) named 'Pistol' in GM. If then you send a Bank Select MSB 1 message together with Program Change 127 you should get 'Machine Gun' instead. They are easily distinguishable so you will know if you will have done everything right.