Expression map(s) wanted for Cinematic Studio Strings, CS2, CSSS, CSB and CSW

legato does tend to be on average quieter but it depends on the situation. You could scale the CC11 controller upwards (by making the minimum higher for instance) if you’re sure you don’t like the current settings. As for legato “glitching out with 2 or more notes”, I’ve no idea what you mean as legatos usually work nicely in CS (though you sometimes need to reduce the attack on the first note of a legato sequence which requires reducing the velocity to between 20 and 63 as you’ll know if you’re familiar with the programming). Unless you are talking about repeated notes in which case they sometimes need to be separated in the pianoroll or you can use a playback offset in the Properties panel in Write mode. There’s no point in comparing Cinematic Studio libraries to Noteperformer – they work completely differently.

As for playback templates, I have one for full orchestra which requires Vienna Ensemble Pro and a basic one for string quartet (the likes of which you could quickly create yourself but I can send if you’re curious)

I’m very much at the beginning of my journey with Dorico but enjoying the experience so far. Thank you for sharing those CS expression maps. I will experiment with the automation which I’m just starting to get my head around. It will also greatly assist the review I’m conducting of the provisional expression maps I’ve created for other external libraries. I keep going back to them and refining them which I guess is what most people do. I’m always learning something new about Dorico. Thanks again.

I’m glad you’re enjoying Dorico so far! I think automation tends to be a bit underused in many maps I’ve seen but naturally we need more control over the divisions between the note lengths to reduce the number of manual overrides needed. Some articulation-rich libraries could also do with more divisions. It will come in due course – other things took priority in Dorico 4. Automation for note dynamics is one of other possible developments for Expression Maps which have already been discussed.

I also go back and refine the maps from time to time as I get to know ever better exactly how they work and find bugs or more efficient ways of programming.

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The Dorico team have done an amazing job with Dorico 4, much of it I’m sure influenced by user wish lists, so I’m sure more refinement of things like note dynamics is probably in the wings so to speak.

Just for the fun of it I’ve created an expression map for the new Metropolis Ark 5. My first experience of adding very strange new playing techniques and linking them to playback techniques. Not sure I would ever use the map but at least it taught me something new. I will look into automation now.

I deployed your CSSS expression maps today and it made me appreciate how much I still have to learn. You’ve added extra controls on Legato and Natural but I confess that I’m not sure I what they do. Can you explain? I understand the velocity and CC11 bit but not the two extra lines of control you’ve added for Legato and Natural. It all works very effectively although I also realised that if I want to test individual instruments I must create a dedicated expression map for each so I saved the SC Solo Strings expression map individually named for Vi1 Vi2 Va and Vc. I hope at some stage John Barron will run through the naming used when creating expression maps. I’ve always created a dedicated expression map for every instrument rather than a shared map on the basis that it’s then easier to recall them individually for other projects.

I assume you have the manual open when you’re testing these things as it tells you what all the entries do. For instance, for legato, I wanted to check that “vibrato” was on if not already, that “legato” mode was active and that the sustain patch was selected. The solo strings maps are in fact the first I did and have not had a recent revision. With the orchestral ones which I’ve been using more recently, I’ve been starting to rationalise the entries and have removed a few which seem superfluous. Because of the fact that entries can be created with either CC58 or keyswitches, it makes things a bit more complicated than with many other libraries.

I’m not sure if there’s really a point in creating a separate EM for individual instruments in the solo strings as the programming is identical for all four and you can then recall the smart one irrespective of instrument. Nevertheless, it’s possible that a specific patch (maybe for instance the various marcato variants) gives a markedly different result from one instrument to the other. My take is, though, that this is perhaps something for a later stage.

Yes I pulled out the CS manuals so I was able to follow most of the extra controls in your EMs. I was able to make the whole CS series work in reaticulate for Reaper which should enable me to follow your entries. It was more the mixing of CCs with Keyswitches that floored me. I noticed that I need to map Init which I confess I haven’t done for any of the maps I’ve created so far. I like being able to test the individual instruments even though a common map would suffice. I chose the automation EMs you shared in preference to the basis EMs as I want to crack that feature. It must surely add to the realism on playback. Thanks again

yes – to some extent this was a matter of experimentation to see what worked as opposed to what was strictly logical. In general, I find increasingly that CC58 automation seems the best way to go and gradually, I’m trying to make the maps more rational. Solo strings are a bit behind the curve in that respect as in recent months, I’ve been concentrating more on orchestral stuff.

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I must admit that like you I’m more at home with CCs than keyswitches. Creating the reabanks for all the CS libraries in reaticulate taught me a lot. But Dorico is a new challenge. Thanks to your EMs I’m getting a better grasp of it though. I’m working on CS2 now. Can’t seem to make Init work but am reading the manual. There are important differences compared to CSS. I think my first step will be to switch from the default of keyswitches to CCs.

Thanks for your guidance David.

The CS EMs you shared with me have taught me a lot, mixing keyswitches with CCs especially. I’ve almost finished a further refinement of CSB to keep it as simple as possible. Added natural and mute note conditions. Chosen to have Legato always on with Marcato and note condition to select whether it uses Marcato Short or Marcato Sustain. I think I’m almost there now.

Thanks again David

Glad you’re making progress! Incidentally, I happen to notice a couple of days ago that one solo strings map which seemed to be dated as the most recent export obviously wasn’t as it didn’t include any automation. If I happen to have sent you that one by mistake, then I’d put in automation along the lines of the orchestral strings but as you’re clearly getting the hang of it, you can naturally do as you please! Or I can send what is definitely the current CSS version.

Would it be possible to share the expression maps you have created for the CS -series?

I would be interested to just try them out. I have made my own expression maps, but haven’t had to use them for a while now. I remember the they were stripped to only include the most crucial articulations.

Happy to share my own version of the CSB Dorico expression map which I finished today. dko22 has shared several of his CS EMs which are also in this thread. I have learned a lot from studying his EMs. BTW do you need one for CS2? As you will see when you open the zip file I tend to do a separate EM for each instrument. Not essential but I like to audition each one separately and like to have the facility to make little refinements. (15.3 KB)

If you could share the latest version of CSS that would be very thank you.

Hi Andy – this should be the one I’m actually using at present (I’m writing something for SATB choir and CSS string quartet)

CS Solo (2.3 KB)

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Very kind of you thank you David. I will update the CSS expression map. I’m still learning new things but the refinements I’ve done to the CSB EM reflect a lot of what I’ve learned from studying your own EMs.

You EM for CSSS is really good. Most of it I understand but the advanced automation bits like pt.user.homophonic still puzzle me. Is there a simple guide to that?

I’ve added to CSSS a BOB Solo Bass and the CSSS Ensemble. The latter still uses your CSSS EM but the C1 keyswitch becomes C0. So I have a project that I can work with very easily now.
My daughter in the UK is in an all-girls choir so I must see what I can create that might interest her.

I experience occasional sticking notes with all the CS series, possibly more than with other libraries. I’ve reviewed all the settings in the Fantom G8 synth I use as my midi controller, reduced things like aftertouch to zero in case that was causing the problem, but it still happens. I was thinking about switching to an Arturia Keylab 88 Mk II but they aren’t available in the Philippines. My fear is I could spend a lot of money and still have sticking notes in Reaper and Dorico. Somehow the note off messages are not getting through every time but there appears to be no pattern to it.

Thanks David.

homophonic and multiphonic just means legato mode enabled and disabled, meaning the ability to write chords/doublestops etc or not. However I wanted separate patches for these for technical reasons as “legato” itself would normally refer to the “sustain” patch with legator enabled and there can be situations when you want to control the status separately.

Another reason is simply that the sustain with legato is my default patch as I rarely want the sustain without legato, except of course for chords, otherwise you would be forced to write in slurs every time you wanted to use this patch. As I’m sure you’ve noticed, CSS does a quite good faster legato where you mostly wouldn’t want to write in slurs but still want to keep the same patch. There is also the important distinction that a slur will make the length over 100% depending on your Playback Option settings which is essential for the proper lyrical legato that CS is so good at. No slur and the length will be under 100% which sounds quite different. Basically this same patch has then two rather different functions.

Oh I see now. I was thinking that legato is better to have as the default. OK, Thank you for your explanation. I started my Dorico journey last Novermber so I still have much to learn.

so do I!

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