Winds detuning


I’m trying to detune some notes in the wind parts. My goal is to implement sort of a manual Hermode system, to make wind parts simulate the way real wind players usual tune themselves in chords.

So, for example, in a major chord, I would try to adjust the mediant (‘e’ in a C Major chord) to be a bit lower (about 14c).

I can do this by manually editing the MIDI Pitch Bend lane, keeping in consideration the ±100% range of the control, and the pitch bend settings of the sound player.

This means, however, that pitch bend data are not strictly linked to the note, and any change to the note length or position would unlink it from the detune data.

Is there a way to link a note to a detune/bend data, like you can do with guitar’s bending? I’m thinking to expression map entries, but these don’t support pitch bend. I’m also thinking to using the guitar controls, but I can’t understand if and how to apply them to wind parts.

Does anybody has a solution for this? May I file a feature request to solve this type of issue?


I imagine the best way to approach this would be to actually use Hermode tuning. Full HALion (and I believe HALion Sonic) includes built-in support for Hermode Tuning. Perhaps other virtual instruments do, too.


I have created custom playing techniques (-14,+2 etc…) that you can place over notes in chord. They work with noteperformer, but you have to customize the expression map. It is also possible to do the same with kontakt (I’ve done it with the CSS Series) using the pitch bend function. There you have to specify a very narrow range for pitch bend in kontakt settings for it to work properly.

I can give more details in either of those cases if you are interested! (I’m not with a computer at the moment and don’t remember excactly how everything was done)

Thank you Daniel. My doubt: is the sound player that has to support Hermode Tuning? Being an analytical function, isn’t the sequencer/notation program the one to calculate the realtime tuning, and send the results to the sound player?

VSL players and Kontakt can use custom scales, but then these would be fixed. So, I would have to use, say Just Intonation for all the notes of an instrument part, instead of having it dynamically calculated, depending on the role of a note in a chord.


Sakasuri, I would for sure be interested to know your method!


You might be right, yes. Cubase certainly supports Hermode tuning so you always have the option of taking your MIDI out of Dorico and into Cubase.

you always have the option of taking your MIDI out of Dorico and into Cubase.

Yes, this is an option. In perspective, with the goal of keeping the sound prototype all inside Dorico, it would be a feature handy to have in it. Since there is already a Chord track, maybe that one can help in implementing a feature like Hermode Tuning.

At the same time, I would love to see a way to keep detuning attached to a note, probably with something similar to what you already did for the guitar bend.


So here is one way to achieve just intonation, but with custom playback/playing techniques (instead of a custom tonality system). The benefit I guess is that the playing techniques can be edited and hidden quite easily. Also transposing works normally when 12-EDO is still used as a tonality system.

Here is what the expression map looks for noteperformer:
(So CC102=64 is the baseline and for example CC102=50 is -14 cents)

And this is what it looks for CSS:

With CSS you have to define a narrow range for the pitch bend, it found out that 49.1% to 50.9% was the closest match possible…

Here are the test files, you can listen if there is any difference at all: :slight_smile: The files have first normal tuning and then natural tuning.

Note performer:

(I noticed that noteperformer performs “senza vib.” as an extremely slow vibrato, which causes the tuning to be a bit unstable… )


01_Just tuning test_Full score.pdf (40.1 KB)

Hope this could be of somehow helpful! And I’m aware of the voice leading mistake there, just in case someone is wondering about that :smiley:

One more good thing with the noteperformer EM is that CC102 “stacks” with the custom tonality system - so you can also have your quarter tone flat C-major triad play back in just tuning if you want :smiley:

Sakasuri, thank you very much for the insight!

The use of CC102 is however unique to CSS, or extends to a few other libraries. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem a standard feature in other sound players. I’ll check to see if the players I’m using have something similar.


FOUND! The VSL Vienna Instruments Pro player allows to assign pitch bend to any other CC. Therefore, I can use an expression map entry as a technique for pitch bend!

I don’t know if this can also be done with the new Vienna Synchron Player, but I can’t find how. I’ll ask them.


It seems like Synchron Player, contrary to Vienna Instruments Pro, can’t support messages other than Pitch Bend for controlling pitch bend.

Is there any hope Dorico will also support Pitch Bend in the expression maps? There would be no need to add a new icon in the editor. One of the choices of the CC option could be Pitch Bend, instead of Control Change.

This could also be an opportunity to also add After Touch.

If all the above can already be done by editing the expression maps’ XML file, I would be happy to do it.


About VSL Synchron Player: they added assignable Pitch Bend control as a wishlist. Maybe it will be added with an update.


@dspreadbury Daniel: with this type of modifier, do you think that an Add-On techniques is better suited than a Basic one? Sending messages related to a CC lane looks like something that is added, and not an alternative, to the current technique.


Yes, an add-on is probably better, since you don’t want it to interfere with the regular choice of playing techniques that are being used by the instrument already.

Thanx! I’ll try it.


Bumping this thread, because it seems that VSL is not adding CC as a source for pitch bend.

The possibility to add it as a type of data in the expression maps would for sure be more general, and be also usable with other sound libraries.