SF3 support

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Anonymous user
SF3 support

Would you please add SF3 support. We can have better sound for the same size of soundfont.

https://musescore.org/en/handbook/soundfonts-and-sfz-files

Posts: 1536
Joined: 25 Mar 2012 - 01:19
Re: SF3 support

Never heard about SF3 format but, AFAIK, it should be like SF2 with compressed samples.

BASS library (used by VMS for MIDI synthesis) already support some well-known compression schemes (like sfArk, MP3, OGG and FLAC); unsupported schemes can be added by downloading additional BASS decompression plugins (http://www.un4seen.com/bass.html#addons) to let BASS and VMS manage compressed samples.

First you could try to rename your .sf3 file to .sf2 and let VMS load it.
If it works and plays well it should be easy for me to add new *.sf3 file type to soundfont selector dialog and let VMS load SF3 files.

If, otherwise, VMS won't load the SF3 soundfont or throw errors, then BASS libraries need to add sf3 support, so you need to forward your request to Un4seen forum (http://www.un4seen.com/forum/?board=1).
If so, please link the created thread back here, so I'll get notifications too.

Anonymous user
Re: SF3 support

I think sf3 is used by music score 2. The size of the soundfont decreasd very much compared to sf2 version.

I get these errors when I try to load it in original format or sf2.

I will add a request there

Posts: 1536
Joined: 25 Mar 2012 - 01:19
Re: SF3 support

I suppose .sf3 is a customized and "proprietary" extension used by Music Score.
If this is the case, I don't think Ian Luck (the developer of BASS libs) will put so much effort in supporting it.

Anyway it worths a try...

Anonymous user
Re: SF3 support

Do you know anyway that I can convert sf2 file samples to ogg? I mean the same sf2 container but compressed. The muisc score performance for playing sf3 is like sf2! So I think the compression does not have any effect on the performance.

Posts: 1536
Joined: 25 Mar 2012 - 01:19
Re: SF3 support

No I don't, sorry ;)

Maybe user falcosoft could jump in; he's much more skilled than me on soundfonts internals.

Posts: 71
Joined: 25 Set 2013 - 16:38
Re: SF3 support
coolsoft wrote:
Maybe user falcosoft could jump in; he's much more skilled than me on soundfonts internals.

I'm summoned :)

amin wrote:
Do you know anyway that I can convert sf2 file samples to ogg? I mean the same sf2 container but compressed. The muisc score performance for playing sf3 is like sf2! So I think the compression does not have any effect on the performance.

1. It's possible but it's not so straighforward as compressing samples into FLAC/WavPack. If you download the bassmidi package from www.un4seen.com you will find sf2pack.exe in the bin folder. With the help of it you can compress samples with FLAC or WavPack. However it dos not support OGG, maybe because OGG is lossy. But Bassmidi itself support ogg compressed samples in SF2 files (moreover in case of OGG compressed samples no extranal libraries are needed for decompression unlike in case of FLAC/WavPack). Unfortunately you have to write your own program or modify sf2pack.c to compress SF2 files with OGG. You have to use the BASS_MIDI_FontPack() function from Bassmidi and give it in a parameter that you want to use the ogg/vorbis compressor. Like this:

BASS_MIDI_FontPack(SoundfontHandle, 'output file name', 'oggenc2.exe -q 10 -', 0);

I have used this method to produce Reality_GMGS_falcomod.sfogg (~10MB) from Reality_GMGS_falcomod.sf2 (~32MB). You can try the ogg compressed soundfont yourself since it's included in my Midiplayer's package:

http://falcosoft.hu/midiplayer_53_bse.zip

Be aware that lower quality than 10 (-q 10) can produce audible artifacts.

2. Unfortunately it's not true that ogg compressed SF2 files have the same performance as uncompressed ones. It's especially noticable with huge (bigger than 1GB) soundfonts. Compressed samples have to be decompressed in real time and it's not free. Overall during playback compressed soundfonts occupy the same amount of memory as uncompressed ones and require more processing (that can cause stuttering) so absolutely no advantages here.

If you load the full soundfont into memory the loading can be much slower. Also they cannot be memory mapped either.

Here's some info in my midiplayer's thread on Vogons about the issues with a big 1.5 GB sounfont compressed to 'sfogg':

https://www.vogons.org/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=48207&p=634129&hilit=sf2pack...

Posts: 14
Joined: 11 Apr 2015 - 01:28
Re: SF3 support

FLAC compression does save quite a bit of download time, and decompresses into memory fast enough to facilitate normal playback of music files, and may even decrease disk or SSD overhead since less is likely to be read per sample.

SF3 is fully documented by the open source editor, Polyphone. It’s basically an enhanced SF2 that is always compressed with Ogg Vorbis.

Posts: 71
Joined: 25 Set 2013 - 16:38
Re: SF3 support
kode54 wrote:
FLAC compression does save quite a bit of download time, and decompresses into memory fast enough to facilitate normal playback of music files,...

Unfortunately it seems FLAC compressed samples can have similar performance problems as OGG with big soundfonts:

https://www.vogons.org/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=48207&p=664041&hilit=sf2pack...

<strong><a href="https://www.vogons.org/memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=29888">t9999clint</a></strong> wrote:

I'm still having some issues with stuttering when I use my SFOGG soundfont, I've noticed however that using a normal SF2PACK (FLAC encoded) format works without issue.
This seems to affect mostly instruments with many samples used in them (50mb+). I'm guessing this is a bug in the BassMidi side of the code, but I figured I'd let you know what I found.

...

After further testing I was able to find some midi files that did this to sf2pack formatted files as well, so It's not just a ogg compression issue. I'm really pushing the limits here with my 2gb monstrosity of a soundfont.

Posts: 14
Joined: 11 Apr 2015 - 01:28
Re: SF3 support

Ah. I haven’t experienced that, but then I only really use soundfonts with a player with at least a full second of buffer, so even dynamically loading gigabyte soundfonts over the network off a Samba share on spinning rust works relatively smoothly.

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