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 Forum index » Instruments and Equipment » General Discussion
Strings section sound
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BillyRocket



Joined: Sep 30, 2013
Posts: 5
Location: Manchester, UK

PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 2:20 am    Post subject: Strings section sound
Subject description: Advice on gettng a full strings section sound from a single violin?
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Does anyone know if its possible - or what kit id need - to get the sound of a violin strings section (ie lots of violins) from a single violin? I've got an electric violin going through a zoom effects box and a Boss loop station - which sounds great, but would love to find a way to add a full strings section for backing tracks. Conceivably it doesnt sound like itd be that tricky, multiplying the input, adding a tincy bit of delay and pitch shifting. Anyone any ideas?

Thanks in advance - all ideas welcome Smile
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sneakthief



Joined: Jul 24, 2006
Posts: 525
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 3:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Can you take your violin to a store and try one of these?

http://www.tc-helicon.com/products/voicetone-d1/

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BillyRocket



Joined: Sep 30, 2013
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 3:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Seems like the D1 is the closest - but looks like it only does doubling. I guess to get that orchestral sound id need a load of those boxes in a line Smile

Thanks for the link tho.
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sneakthief



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 4:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

"Single and multi-voice natural doubling styles are available including octave shifted variants, classic fixed detune effects and even a group shout for extra fun."
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soundwave106



Joined: Nov 24, 2004
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 5:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I would think the most natural way would be overdubbing. Wink

Voice doubling / choir effects and plugins have their place, but any that I've heard have never sounded that natural to me.
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sneakthief



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 5:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I got the feeling this was for live...
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BillyRocket



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Thanks chaps - yes this was for live playing really. So by overdubbing do you mean recording the line multiple times to get the multi instrument effect? Sorry, bit of a newbie...
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GovernorSilver



Joined: Apr 26, 2004
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

TC Helicon also makes a harmonizer pedal for voice. Do try before buying, though, as I've heard mixed reviews from the fiddle community. Along those lines, there's also Eventide's boxes (the Pitchfactor pedal, the Eclipse, and the H-series). The Eventide stuff is not cheap but you might be able to find a deal on a used H-3000 or something.

That all said, I don't think there's any pedal that will make your one violin sound like an entire string quartet playing one of Beethoven's quartet pieces, otherwise the likes of Kishi Bashi would be using one instead of the looper pedal that he relies on for his solo sets.

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sneakthief



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I think the TC doubler is more appropriate than the harmonizer. String sections usually play the same note - with cello and double-bass one or two octaves lower Wink
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GovernorSilver



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

sneakthief wrote:
I think the TC doubler is more appropriate than the harmonizer. String sections usually play the same note - with cello and double-bass one or two octaves lower Wink


You're right, he did say "string section", not "string quartet" - I confused his question with the "quartet-in-a-pedal" one that was posted in the fiddle forum.

If his needs are simple enough, then I suppose he could get away with a doubler pedal.

If however he is expecting to plug his violin into a pedal and produce all the notes from something like this, I predict he will be disappointed:


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Cynosure



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 1:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Another thing to keep in mind is stereo imaging. I have found that I can thicken up bad sounding synth strings by panning the across the stereo spectrum. I often use two synths playing the same thing - one panned to the left and one panned to the right.
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BillyRocket



Joined: Sep 30, 2013
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Thanks for all your comments - really appreciated as i really havent the foggiest whats out there. And yup, the strings from air on a g string are just the sort of sound i was (rightly or naively!) hoping to get near. Guess ill just have to lower my expectations a wee bit. And ill deffo have a go with a doubler and harmoniser - have checked out some demos on youtube and while it does maybe sound a bit unnatural, its probably worth at least a test.

Ill go and check out the same for the eventide boxes - nice one Smile
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soundwave106



Joined: Nov 24, 2004
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

BillyRocket wrote:
Thanks chaps - yes this was for live playing really. So by overdubbing do you mean recording the line multiple times to get the multi instrument effect? Sorry, bit of a newbie...


Yes, by overdubbing I meant just that. I was thinking for recording purposes, though now that someone mentions it many looper pedals probably could do that.

The "instant" way to get the "sort of" effect, I feel, would be to take an input, and add a random phase shift and detune to multiple copies of the waveform. In other words, your basic chorus effect. Now, ideally with more than one delayed copies and would have a much better pitch modulation than what you'd get out of Basic Guitar Pedal (which typically modulates with a single LFO). Probably there's a few pedals out there with this sort of effect, it doesn't sound like it'd be that big of a bugger to program.

The problem is, I've never heard a chorus effect that comes very close to the organic movement of multiple players (or even multiple overdubs).
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BillyRocket



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2013 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Thanks soundwave - yeah, thats exactly what i was thinking - conceptually i wouldnt have thought itd be terribly tricky - a bit of work to make it sound organic by randomising the pitch shifts a little with some delay here and there but surely doable.
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