I've been playing a bit with the woodwinds on my Windows PC, and my EWI.
If there's room for feedback,
There are a few feat requests I'd like to have someone look into. Most of the issues are only minor.
I use the EWI USB in my example, Kontakt Kontrol, and the Audiomodeling Woodwind pack.
1- The biggest issue I have, is the pitch bend issue.
Audiomodelling software sounds very advanced compared to General Midi, but when I pitch bend a note, it doesn't sound very convincing to me.
I can hear the frequency shifting on the entire note, as if an LP was fast forwarded; like say the C is pitch-bent up or down, the tone going from C up to a C# or down to a B, doesn't sound realistic.
Once I hit the full semi note up or down, it sounds more realistic again.
Perhaps also an issue with my EWI, but it's not easy to hit that exact 100% pitch UP or DN on an EWI.
2- I've noticed that the Tenor sax, is about an octave too low for the EWI. I do select the Breath CNTRL, or Wind Contrl preset, but by default I'm not able to hit the highest octave, and can actually hit notes below the octaves that there are samples for.
With my finger centered on the octave rollers, it sounds how a sax should sound, but rolling to the upper octave, I can only hit a C6 (d#6 if I cheat with semis up).
That means I can't hit 2 semis with the EWI if I ever needed them.
On the bottom I can hit as low as C1 (A#0 when cheating).
The samples on the tenor sax, are only from F#2 to F6.
I don't know how this works out for other wind controllers, but wished that by default for the EWI USB, the Tenor sax could be +12 semis up.
3- The reverb.. It's a reverb.. And not a bad one. But I remember hearing better reverbs before. It also uses quite some CPU cycles.
The one I used to working with, was from Buzz Jeskola Tracker . I believe they use 32 bit fpp for reverb, and their reverb is really so clean; the best I've ever heard! (and that was from 1997, 23 years ago).
I was wondering if the reverb is processed in 32 bit INT or 24 bit float? As it doesn't sound as clean as Jeskola.
Maybe it's just my hardware... That's possible too.
Another thing with reverb, is that you can easily leave an additional 5-10ms of latency in it, and it won't be audible. But it'll greatly reduce CPU cycles.
Even if the device can run an ASIO driver as low as 64 samples at 96kHz (5ms latency), the reverb doesn't need to be so strict.
By itself the reverb sounds good enough, but sometimes I want more reverb than the dials allow me to. I wished more reverb could be added.
4- Additional effects in the VST.
I believe it doesn't cost much effort, to add a few basic effects, like: delay, chorus, and perhaps some others that could be useful
5- By default, they keyboard profile is loaded.
I wished if it was possible that a wind controller profile could be loaded (upon starting the VST) when an EWI is detected instead.
Not sure if this is a program issue, or VST issue.
6- By default, for the Wind controller profile, the expression curve for the EWI is set to Ln 0.3. I find at home I put it to linear (lin 0), or Ln 0.1 at most, as Ln 0.3 requires me to blow rather hard through the instrument. Lin 0 should also allow one to have the highest instrument resolution available. Midi only has 128 settings, so curving it, will reduce the amount of steps the output signal is going to be able to play back.
I haven't heard the wind instruments being used live, however I find in the studio/at home, the EWI USB's mouthpiece is very well calibrated. I presume Lin 0 means Linear. No curve added.
That's how I mostly use it.
7- I don't know how I can slide down, from a (example) G to a C, meaning in a continuous tone. If I use the notes (G, F, E, D, C), no matter how fast or slow, and no matter how hard I blow, tonguing or continuous, or lowering the breath pressure while doing the effect, the notes sound chopped (as if I'm playing actual notes in that order). I don't understand how I can ask the engine to give me such a (mostly slide down) sound.
A few other things I don't yet grasp:
a- The bite sensor for me is a bit on the sensitive side. I wished I knew how to reduce it's effect.
b- I'm not sure, but thought the EWI breath sensor is able to send signals to the controller, that can be interpreted for growl. Like, blowing through the EWI while humming a low tone, should rapidly increase and decrease the pressure signal, and can be interpreted by the SWAM decoder, as adding growl.
I thought this was being worked on, on the Sax Brothers. But I could be wrong about this.
c- If the above is not possible to implement, I wished I knew how to change the EWI's bite sensor, to growl. I would use it more than vibrato. And reassign the vibrato to a pitch bend, since pitch bending (especially DOWN) doesn't sound good at all, and seems pretty useless.
Midi learn doesn't recognize any of the EWI commands, including bite or pitch up/dn commands.
Midi Ox tells me the commands are being transmitted though.
I know the list is large, but I hope at least some of the data can be used to improve the user interaction with the program.
Thanks, and keep up the good work!