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Music Software Needed

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posted on Sep, 23 2005 @ 06:26 PM
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I'm searching for some software that will allow me to write music, using computer generated piano, guitar, clarinet (and other) sounds.

I have no idea what I"m doing as regards music and computers combined, but I can play instruments, and I can use the computer.

I'm looking for something that I can 'pick out the notes' and it will play it back to me like a song. I want to add guitar and vocals to the music as I go along and then play it all back like a wonderful symphony. Then generate an MP3 file.

Can anyone suggest a basic software package for me? Nothing fancy (or too expensive) just something to get me started making some music.

I've done a search, but I'm afraid I'm overwhelmed with all the options out there...

Thanks!




posted on Sep, 23 2005 @ 06:43 PM
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Do you have the real instruments at home? If so you could just record the actual instrument sound and incorporate it into the mix.



posted on Sep, 23 2005 @ 06:44 PM
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It IS overwhelming, innit?!

My ex used to swear by Cakewalk 's various software programs. Pricewise they're probably on the upper end, but some of them aren't so bad.

They include programs for just about every possible use, musically.

hth



posted on Sep, 23 2005 @ 06:44 PM
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Sound Forge v8.0 from Sonic Foundry is, what I understand to be, an excellent program that allows you to edit, create and modify digital sound files. I'm not a musician myself however I am very fortunate to have a number of serious musicians as friends and I can clearly recall hearing them mention this program in glowing terms. You can always get this program and use it until you find exactly the sort of program that you want if Sound Forge doesn't work out for you. Heck, it's a start, right?



posted on Sep, 23 2005 @ 07:04 PM
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Here are some suggestions.

I think this one would be pretty neat:
www.musiciansfriend.com...=rec/search/detail/base_pid/700349/




Easy score setup

Select your instruments or voices, specify the key and time signatures, and the score is set up automatically. Or start from an existing ensemble. Or use one of 68 professional templates.

6 ways to enter notes

Select a note and click it onto the staff, notes space automatically. Notate as you play a solo acoustic instrument. Type note on your computer keyboard with or without MIDI. Notate as you play your MIDI keyboard. Scan printed sheet music; it opens automatically with SmartScore Lite. Import MIDI or Internet files. Also imports Encore files.

Hear your music come to life

Your music deserves to be heard with all the feeling, phrasing, and nuance you felt when you wrote it. Finale will play your music as you would want it to be performed, even if you enter notes manually. With Finale's included SmartMusic® SoundFont, trumpet staves sound like trumpets and flutes sound like flutes. Dynamics and expressions are interpreted. And you can choose a variety of musical styles and customize the playback parameters.


Composition and Utility Software
www.musiciansfriend.com...=rec/search?c=4908&c=4909&c=4257


Plugins and Instruments
www.musiciansfriend.com...=rec/search?c=5220&c=5251

These are probably what you are looking for. Interesting stuff. Id love to own all these programs.

This one sounds neat:
www.musiciansfriend.com...=rec/search/detail/base_pid/708210/




Personal Orchestra contains samples of all the major instruments in a symphony orchestra -- strings, brass, woodwinds, and percussion -- as well as instruments not found in other orchestral libraries -- a Steinway® concert grand piano, a Stradivarius violin, Guarneri Violin, Gagliano Violin, Wurlitzer, and Venus concert harps, Haynes flutes, Heckel bassoons, a Mustel celeste, a Rudolf von Beckerath concert pipe organ, a harpsichord, and many other exquisite instruments. You get everything you need to create orchestrations of any complexity!


The link contains information about all the instruments. Quite impressive.

There is tons of stuff to look through, the only issue is compatibility between programs etc.

Hope this helps.



posted on Sep, 23 2005 @ 08:46 PM
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Wow! Thanks so much everyone! I'm sure I'll make a PODcast with whatever I get!



posted on Sep, 23 2005 @ 09:56 PM
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Audacity, Reason, Rebirth.

Reason and Rebirth aren't for the faint of heart. Takes a while to learn, but wow, holy crap there are sooo many options. Expensive too.

www.propellerheads.se... Watch the trailer.

Rebirth is the Synth version of Reason, same company. Sound Forge is good too.



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 01:02 AM
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If you do try any of these products etc, be sure to update us. Id like to know how well these work.

Ive never been one to try anything like this, but I could see it being fun.




posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 03:15 AM
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Reason and rebirth are currently the top mixing software for Professionals, lol. I know of at least 7 trance groups that do all their tracks in Rebirth before trying to do it for a recording.

If its making music you want, FruityLoops isn't bad either, but if you're just talking about podcast quality, use Audacity, its free.



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 04:21 AM
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the only money you need to spend is if you buy anything physical, such as microphone, midi keyboard, decent soundcard etc. everything else is pretty much free from the internet, unless you feel bad about downloading programs like sound forge 8, cubase SX, reason, then feel free to buy them.

i use a torrent site at torrentspy.com... you have to download a program called 'bitlord' but it's well worth it.

if you do download a cubase program make sure it's an older one than the latest version called cubase SX3, as these are very hard to actually get to work on your computer. you can find various soundforge programs on there and reason too.

sure you could go for a cakewalk program but if you want to make anything decent then you want a better quality program. most studios use protools, logic and/or cubase...they do not use cakewalk


now about vsti programs: there are many out there, some awesome, some not so awesome and some quite awful. i recently found a great one for piano it's called 'MDA piano' and here's the link to that download MDA Piano . another sweet vsti is one called 'superwave p8', i've even got the site link here so you can download it Superwave P8

If you have trouble with getting those programs just let me know and i'll help you out.

o.k now on to the question of what various pieces of equipment you need. obviously you don't want anything too expensive, but you want something that will give you a decent sound, hence you do have to spend a little bit of money. if you want a midi keyboard i suggest you search for 'M-Audio' as they make a vast range of plain midi keyboard, that are quality but also not too expensive. they also make an outboard soundcard called 'M-Audio Firewire Audiophile', which i swear by as it is totally awesome. this will set you back about 150 pounds though. however, it's well worth it, and for it's price is better than any soundcard for the same money.

so alltogether with those free programs you hopefully download, free vsti programs, the only money you need to spend is 150 on the outboard soundcard, 50ish on the keyboard, and anything else you want to buy. there's my solution to starting recording for only 200 pounds. let me know how you get on



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 09:01 AM
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A. I don't have any instruments. I want a program that simulates the sounds of piano, guitar and a few others.

B. I want as low-priced as I can get it. Although my sweetie says it's fine to spend $150+ if it's what I want, I can't justify spending that just for me to have fun with tunes.
(Most of the stuff I've looked at is $300 and that's just too much)

C. I have Audacity (I'm using it to record vocals), but that doesn't generate instruments as far as I know.

D. I'm a novice at best. I don't want anything complicated. I just want to make music for my own personal enjoyment. I have never recorded anything until a week or so ago when I started doing PODcasts. I do sing and play (by ear) a couple instruments.

Kalapadea - Does Audacity generate instrument sounds?
Dulcimer - I will be sure to update you if I ever find what I'm looking for.

shaunybaby - I will look into what you have posted here a little later. Only have a moment now.

Again, thanks to all!



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 09:26 AM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
A. I don't have any instruments. I want a program that simulates the sounds of piano, guitar and a few others.


Not too sure if this is possible. You could mess around with audio samples but you'd probably find it hard to find the exact ones you wanted. But if you don't want to get any instruments then 'rebirth' is probably the best program for that. However, to 'simulate' these piano and guitar sounds, that simulation is called 'midi' and you need a midi controller (i.e. keyboard) to play those.



B. I want as low-priced as I can get it. Although my sweetie says it's fine to spend $150+ if it's what I want, I can't justify spending that just for me to have fun with tunes.
(Most of the stuff I've looked at is $300 and that's just too much)


what have you looked at buying so far, as in equipment and/or music programs? most programs you can find on the internet for free, and well for the equipment you just need to shop around.



D. I'm a novice at best. I don't want anything complicated. I just want to make music for my own personal enjoyment. I have never recorded anything until a week or so ago when I started doing PODcasts. I do sing and play (by ear) a couple instruments.


i think starting off with something like rebirth is a good idea, as you don't need a keyboard or instruments to make music with that. it might be complicated at first but soon get used to it.



shaunybaby - I will look into what you have posted here a little later. Only have a moment now.


i think your best bet maybe to start with rebirth. maybe you could search for a download of that on the net. my brother used to make stuff on there and he can't play one instrument.



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 10:38 AM
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Originally posted by shaunybaby

Not too sure if this is possible. You could mess around with audio samples but you'd probably find it hard to find the exact ones you wanted. But if you don't want to get any instruments then 'rebirth' is probably the best program for that. However, to 'simulate' these piano and guitar sounds, that simulation is called 'midi' and you need a midi controller (i.e. keyboard) to play those.


MIDI sounds rubbish usually though and never recreates instruments that well. Finale (pay for) and Finale Notepad (Free) don't do that bad a job of recreating a piano (if I remember) you can find them somewhere around abouts here (sorry in a rush):

www.finalemusic.com...

Just read on intro, that "Finale 2006 raises the bar with even more power and speed. With key new features
like world-class sounds from Garritan Personal Orchestra®", that sounds good!



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 10:44 AM
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not 'ALL' midi sounds rubbish. there are actually a few midi programs out there that actually sound good, and well you have to do a bit of tweeking with the EQ anyways to make it sound slightly more realistic. i suggest you get 'mda piano' and for it's size (about 2mgbs) there is no better free, small program you can get that will recreate a good piano sound



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 12:16 PM
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I can't tell you all how much I appreciate the responses here.
Thank you so much!

The more I look, however, the more I realize that what I'm looking for probably does not exist in the software world. I wouldn't know what to do with a sound board if it came with a teacher, much less on my own.

I was expecting to see something like a piano keyboard on the screen and be able to select timing and pick out notes with my mouse. Then play it back. Then, select another instrument, like an acoustic guitar, pick out notes (on the piano keyboard) or designate chords and then play that back along with the piano track I had already made. Then, I thought I could sing along with it and have a complete song.

I feel pretty ignorant not knowing that such a thing is probably ridiculous to expect, but then again, I was ignorant about it and there's nothing wrong with that.

With what I would spend for some of this software, I might be able to get a real keyboard or guitar and just play them!
I may look into that option, actually. I'm feeling a need to make some music.

If anyone is interested, I have a couple of PODcasts (just my vocals)
www.abovetopsecret.com... (there are 2 in there)
www.abovetopsecret.com...

I was hoping to fill in the background with instruments instead of my voice.

Thanks again.



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 12:58 PM
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You want Fruity Loops, it's easy to use, takes about 1 day to learn almost everything about it, it has sounds, keyboard, and you do everything with your mouse.

My friends make music all in Fruity Loops,
www.firesickle.com...

DJ Greasy pushes fruity loops to the limit, sean just kinda plays with what he knows, in real life, he can barely play the piano, but in loops he comes up with some pretty cool loops and such.

Fruity Loops: www.flstudio.com...

Specifically you're looking for "Piano roll". its one of the features.

[edit on 9/24/2005 by Kalapadea]



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 01:10 PM
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Originally posted by Kalapadea
You want Fruity Loops,


Ack! This may be it! I'm going to download the demo. Thanks!



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 01:16 PM
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Audacity Very easy to use.



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 02:05 PM
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I think Fruity Loops has what I am looking for, but it's WAY, WAY, WAY overkill.

I want something very basic. I can't see myself spending $150 then using 1/20th of what the thing has to offer.

There's probably a free download of what I want, I just don't know what it's called - I don't know what to search for... Music composition software? Piano Roll program? I'll keep looking.

Cobra, I have Audacity. That's not what I'm looking for. (Unless there are some hidden features in there that I haven't seen.
)



posted on Sep, 24 2005 @ 03:14 PM
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if you're not buying anything like equipment and/or instruments then your set up you require should not cost you one dime. those programs mentioned like rebirth, fruity loops etc, can all be found on the internet for free. i don't think you're going to find 'one' program that has everything you want it to do. i'm certain there is not a music program out there that allows you to play guitar or piano stuff without having a midi controller (keyboard). the only thing i can think of doing without having a keyboard would be to get audio samples from somewhere and just adding them together...but that would sound totally wack.



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