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A Newbie's Appreciation Of Samp V8 Se


hitch
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...because I'm not allowed to post this in the main forum. ;)

I can't play an instrument or read music. I can't afford an extensive collection of CDs or a decent hi-fi. But I've always loved music and harboured a hankering to compose/make/play it. I'd been online a couple of years before realising in the last few months that a know-nothing like me might possibly start to make music, thanks to advances in technology.

The internet has also introduced me to new types of music - I've moved away from rock towards dance/electronica/hiphop, which has further increased my interest in making, for want of a better term, "computer music". There are so many new sounds out there and I wanted to make them as well as hear them.

So I looked around, had a brief flirtation with Acoustica Mixcraft (easy to use but sorely needs updating), tried a few demos, most of which my computer didn't like, and settled for Magix Music Maker. It was an eye-opener and great fun - but it was buggy and it left my PC with a black eye. I'd learned a little about music but the uphill struggle left me disillusioned.

Music magazines proved a balm and a torment - it was like window shopping; all those lovely applications like Cubase and Sonar and Logic and Tracktion waggled their hips at me but I knew that if I asked them out on a date that my wallet and (puny human) PC would explode. A couple of months ago, Computer Music magazine included Samplitude V8 SE on its cover disk and I automatically shoved it on my computer (hey, it was free) and thought, "meh". It looked nice, it seemed professional but I didn't know where to start. ASIO drivers? What's a driver? VIP Projects? MIDI? I knew MIDI was vital but I didn't have a keyboard except for the funny one with letters on it. And there was no way it was going to run on my 1G processor and 128 MB RAM anyway. Stupid program. Stupid me for installing it.

In a flash of inspiration I tried to read the help manual.

*tumbleweed rolls across screen*

So I ignored the program and let it take up valuable space on my valuable hard drive. A few weeks and a few drinks later I tried to follow the Computer Music tutorial.

In the last month I've made over 30 minutes of music, ranging from house to hiphop to funk to electronica to experimental. It's all rubbish. But I have had the time of my life making it and Samplitude has helped me do it.

It is so good. It sounds fantastic. I love how the cursor changes from "pick up and move" to "mark a range" simply by moving the cursor from the bottom to the top of an object. Did I say object? Object editing is wonderful - it's so intuitive. When I first posted here I didn't understand what it meant and now I get it and appreciate its effectiveness and, more than anything, its ease of use.

VST instruments work. VST effects work. I have a "real" mixing desk to use (not that I understand the first thing about EQ) - and I can apply effects and EQ to each single object in a track. WOW! When first I rendered a file in MAGIX Music Maker I had to keep my fingers crossed and wait 10 minutes for the program to chug though rendering. The first time I rendered a VIP to a WAV file in Samplitude it did it so quickly that I thought nothing had happened. And the ability to chuck in a sample and change the tempo is so simple and such fun. Never before have I produced so much crap so easily. ;)

Sorry for all this rambling. I think what I'm trying to say is that Samplitude, even the light version, is easy to use, technically astute and, all things considered, a very clever piece of software. Yes, it has flaws, but the pros outweigh the cons. When I do buy a DAW I think Samp will be my first port of call.

My favourite thing about Samp V8 SE? It's so intuitive. I've lost count of the number of times I've said, "I wish I could do that," then thought, "I wonder if...", only to find out that Samp can do it and do it well. Other programs may be better than Samp but I can only speak as I find.

One small caveat in this overlong post for the people at MAGIX:

First things first, never mind the updates and patches and bugs - if you want to make money, PUBLISH A DECENT MANUAL (Samp for Dummies, etc.), POST SOME TUTORIAL VIDEOS and PUBLICISE YOUR SOFTWARE. The last issue of Computer Music magazine had 6-page and 3-page reviews of Ableton Live 6 and Sonar 6 respectively - Samp 9 was featured in the same issue (two months after the same magazine gave away the free copy of V8 SE) and it got...half a page. PUBLICITY, please! :P

And I'm spent. Thanks to all at MAGIX for a great program. :D

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Too much? ;) Geeks never know when to stop...

I tend to agree with most of your findings on SAM. I am an 8 pro user and have been discovering new cool things all the time... with no help from the wimpy manual mind you.

I am watching the development of 9 quite closely waiting for the day they get some issues ironed out...

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Other programs may be better than Samp but I can only speak as I find.

Nope, Samplitude is the best. :P

I've used/tried many many different programs and none of them speak to me like Samplitude. I was hooked on Samplitude the moment I tried the v6.0 demo. At that time it was a 3 month long "fully functional" demo and after using it for 3 months I couldn't even look at my Cakewalk program anymore. I got Samplitude almost immediately after the demo expired.

That was about 5 years ago, and I've tried every program I can get my hands on since then. But I have yet to find anything I would replace Samplitude with...... Except Sequoia. ;)

-tkr

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  • 4 weeks later...

I think this is an overly convoluted program in terms of layout, needs to be simplified.

Im sorry to say that I dont think this Software is truly intuitive to use, and it lacks some essentials

like folder tracks, group tracks, auto global fadesand crossfades, limited amounts of audio tracks etc...

But I do appreciate the scope of possibilities that can be done with this software, very comprehensive.

Incorporated CD burning, batch editing, possibility to operate like ordinary Audio editor etc...

I use Cubase for multitrack audio/midi, mastering, processing etc which is excellent but lacks things like

batch processing at sub 5ms fade ins/outs, cd burning etc... they put all that stuff in wavelab.

As an affordable all in one solution, Samplitude is very good.

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it lacks some essentials like folder tracks, group tracks, auto global fadesand crossfades, limited amounts of audio tracks etc...

I don't know what all has been taken out for the SE version, but all of these are in the Professional version. The only one I know of for sure is the limited track count in the SE version.

For the others, this is how you do them in the Professional version and you can check and see if any of these work in SE also.

Track Folder: Track menu --> Insert New Tracks --> New Track Folder

Group Tracks: In the mixer there is a button titled "Link" that links all functions of the tracks together that have the link button activated. You can also group individual track controls by using the shift (or ctrl) button to select multiple controls and going to Track menu --> Track Properties --> Group Controls.

Auto Global Crossfades: Open the object editor for any object, then go to the crossfade editor. Set the fade in and fade out faders for the setting you want to be the default and then click on the menu button above the fader (for either the fade in or fade out) and select "Set Global Crossfade". This crossfade setting will now be used whenever you make a new edit.

-tkr

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