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Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #20 on: May 18, 2017, 05:13:03 PM »
Well I heard back from Soundtower, not sure how some people have got the demo transmitting , bc the demo has that disabled.

From their email, this is how the demo is limited


- Parameter editing disabled
- Saving and loading files disabled
- Writing programs to OB-6
- Transmitting is disabled.
This means that you cannot really do anything other to make sure that you are able to establish proper MIDI communication between the synth and the Editor and preview all the Editor's features.


Of course I couldn't find this info on the site as it seems a bit half assed, but hopefully the editor isn't.
So basically even though they recommend you test it with the demo on their site, they admit you can't in a customer support email ?

In short I probably don't trust their business as you cannot get a refund if it doesn't work, but you can't test that in demo mode.
Doesn't inspire confidence does it.

Edit: missed pls last posts, so basically it's ok for everybody but effects don't display ? Is this still beta ?
« Last Edit: May 18, 2017, 05:22:39 PM by h4ndcrafted »

Jdoo

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #21 on: May 18, 2017, 06:35:31 PM »
...
Edit: missed pls last posts, so basically it's ok for everybody but effects don't display ? Is this still beta ?

Well... they display..  Just the wrong effect.   :o   Actually, I saves the right value / effect that is on your OB, but the GUI has the wrong text, in it's display. 

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #22 on: September 04, 2017, 05:57:41 PM »
In short I probably don't trust their business as you cannot get a refund if it doesn't work, but you can't test that in demo mode.
Doesn't inspire confidence does it.

Edit: missed pls last posts, so basically it's ok for everybody but effects don't display ? Is this still beta ?

Seems odd they would even have a demo mode if you can't test basic parameter sending. Why didn't they make it time-limited instead of feature limited? I've had issues with communication to my devices while using these kinds of programs before, so I'd like to know it will work before I buy...

Jdoo

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #23 on: September 05, 2017, 06:43:14 PM »

Seems odd they would even have a demo mode if you can't test basic parameter sending. Why didn't they make it time-limited instead of feature limited? I've had issues with communication to my devices while using these kinds of programs before, so I'd like to know it will work before I buy...

Yeah... the only thing you really can do with the demo, is verify communications from your OB *to* the SoundTower editor.  It's a way of at least, seeing that there is 'some' level of comms working.  A few folks have used the SoundTower free version, to take screen snapshots of settings for patches. It isn't anywhere near a working demo though, as the better functions are hobbled.  I agree - a time-limited demo would have been better.  Way better.

Update from me... At 3-4 months, I still get a ton of use from the SoundTower editor.  As an example - this past weekend,  I picked up Luke Neptune's latest library of sounds ( was very nice set... a lot of usable stuff ).  I only wanted to load a couple of handfuls of the sounds onto my OB though.  The ST librarian, made it easy to demo sounds, and move the 'keepers' into specific locations of my OB.  I've organized the sounds on my OB by genre, so it's helpful to have a GUI where I can see / manage patch names.   Just that feature.. saved me a load of grief / guesswork, moving stuff manually with the SysEx Librarian. 

Other features of the SoundTower are still a blast to use.. (the Sound Generators are cool).   In fact.. I have a set of sounds that I have generated (Pads, Brass, Effects), using the Generators for initial inspiration.   I havent wrapped my arms around using the Sequencer editor... though I do use Sequencer templates for every patch I create.  I.E. If I create a patch, I step through the various sequences I have saved off (and there a dozens/hundreds) while I am tweaking the patch, and usually - looking for something to save along with a patch.  Seriously -- if you aren't using Sequences to liven your sounds, you've left some killer functionality at the door.  There are other useful features about the ST editor, but I mentioned those in an earlier post.

At the end of the day...  For me -- this was a good / must-have purchase.  It's something, that perhaps a better coder, or synth guru might not want or need.  It's ripe for an update.  There is a LOT that still feels 'not-quite-finished' about it..  and that's too bad really.   But there is a lot of great functionality / utility in the SoundTower editor.

Joe

Jdoo

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #24 on: April 08, 2018, 08:47:51 PM »
Update.  I was poking around on the SoundTower site, and saw that they had posted a 1.4.0 of the Standalone version.  Loaded it up.. and am happy to report, all the niggling bits that I had encountered - seem to be fixed now.  The effects show the correct values now.  There also seems to be (though I havent verified this) a way to dump single SysEx files for individual patches. 

Joe

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #25 on: April 09, 2018, 07:31:25 AM »
Update.  I was poking around on the SoundTower site, and saw that they had posted a 1.4.0 of the Standalone version.  Loaded it up.. and am happy to report, all the niggling bits that I had encountered - seem to be fixed now.  The effects show the correct values now.  There also seems to be (though I havent verified this) a way to dump single SysEx files for individual patches. 

Joe

This is great news, thanks so much for the report!  ST just earned a purchase!

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #26 on: April 14, 2018, 08:11:32 PM »
Oh, I don't know whether it is the same for everybody else, but the effects on the editor don't always show right even after re transmission. I.e Ring mod effect seems to want to show as 'shifter 1' a lot of the time, other times its fine.

That is one of the known issues...I also have to keep an eye on the LFO Sync button. It tends to be wrong most of the time when I call up a preset from disk or before I save to disk from the editor. In fact, I still visually check all the parameters before I save to make sure the software reflects the hardware's state. What year is this? I recently lost a preset fiddling around with the editor and accidentally over writing the preset I was trying to call up. Losing that preset hurt...I'm putting that down to human error unless it happens again. It was a long night. Anyway, Goodluck!

I just have a couple of days with this so far...mostly delighted, but annoyed as well. My OB-6 has been "misbehaving" with other programs since I loaded...sometimes won't open in SONAR or Reaper until I power-cycle.
Also, the LFO waveform in the program won't go 'all the way' to SINE...just stops at SAW. I have to manually move it to SINE on the instrument. Just the library, however, is worth it, and I haven't started playing with sequence editing, but am encouraged by the look of it.

I bought both the PlugSE and the standalone ($30 extra to support a $2000 instrument seemed the right thing to do). I suspect that I will try to make the Plug work the first project I do with more than one patch.

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #27 on: May 06, 2018, 08:18:22 PM »
Noticed that version 1.3.0 was out on the SoundTower site, so I installed it.  Was hoping they had addressed the problem with the Effects not being reflected correctly between the screen and what's selected on the OB.  No joy... still out of sync.   ::)
I went ahead and bought both the standalone and the PlugSE (a $30 gamble) without much testing, although the setup was pretty straightforward and worked just like the instructions.

Regarding the effects, the order that Soundtower displays is in the same order as the effects are listed in the printed manual...except for the reverbs, the manual lists the effects in alphabetical order:
EFFECT A
bbd-ddl-CHO-FL1-FL2-PH1-PH2-PH3-rin

EFFECT B
bbd-ddl-CHO-FL1-FL2-PH1-PH2-PH3-rin-HAL-r00-PLA-SPr

On the actual OB-6, the order is (listening to these it is obvious they are correct!):
EFFECT A
bbd-ddl-CHO-PH1-PH2-PH3-rin-FL1-FL2

EFFECT B
bbd-ddl-CHO-PH1-PH2-PH3-rin-FL1-FL2-HAL-r00-PLA-SPr

Other misses I have discovered.
LFO SHAPE top position is "SINE" on hardware, "TRIANGLE" in software (I mistakenly reported that the position was missing on my earlier report)

I just went through and checked everything else and these are the only things that popped up, although I have also noticed a couple of glitches here and there like the LFO SYNC, although that seems fine with 1.4.0 (which I am currently running and still has the specific issues listed above).

On a further saga...just gave up on an attempt to use the PlugSE. I had mixed results...first I tried it with Reaper and could not get it to work at all...it would not recognize the OB-6 at all, even though it is clearly connected as the standalone version works fine. Neither of the red lights in the MIDI port selection would come on and a scan reported that it could not find my OB-6.

Then I tried it with Cakewalk SONAR (the final release of the Platinum version), and everything worked fine...the PlugSE fired up properly, recognizing both input and output (both red lights came on) and seemed to work well. Unfortunately, I'm using SONAR less and less since the debacle with Gibson when I decided to try out Reaper, which I am liking.

Then I tried it with Ableton LIVE which I use mainly for idea generation and jamming for song fodder...I was able to get the OB-6 input connection (i.e. I could use the software interface to program and load the synth), but could never it to synch up with the hardware controls. Oddly the red light that indicates successful connection (I think) came on in the <MIDI Out Port> selection, but <MIDI In Port> stayed dark (the opposite of what actually was happening as I was able to send stuff TO the OB-6 FROM PlugSE, but could send stuff FROM the OB-6 TO the PlugSE)

Any thoughts??
« Last Edit: May 06, 2018, 09:10:44 PM by shmuelyosef »

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #28 on: May 07, 2018, 12:40:58 PM »
I paid for both the S.A. & Plugin versions as well. I have never used the plugin version and stopped trying a few days after purchase. Bewildering amount of issues there when I tried it. I have the S. A. version installed on a laptop along with the new SE-02 editor. My DAW ran out of usb ports so having a laptop handle the stand alone editors is working great and it freed up some ports on my DAW. Lucky my girl doesn't need her laptop back.
Original Model D <> Sub 37 <> Minitaur <> Slim Phatty <> OB-6 <> Prophet Rev2 8Voice <> Integra 7 <> SE-02 <> Prologue16 <> Triton Le <> Boss Dr. Rhythm DR-55 <> Sound Gizmo

"They're not aliens...they're Americans!"
(The Mouse That Roared, 1959)

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #29 on: May 07, 2018, 06:42:45 PM »
Followup on my issues above.
I sent a copy of my "measured rant" above to the Soundtower support email. I received an initial reply that was somewhat 'boilerplate' (watch the setup video) and ignored some of the longer message points.
I then replied with a reassertion of the issues (really only 2) and received an excellent reply.

My problems with the PlugSE were relatively straightforward but unsatisfying. I didn't realize that just having a USB port <Enabled> had different responses in different DAWs, that led to my mixed results. In Cakewalk SONAR, the OB-6 USB-MIDI port doesn't get "Grabbed" until you actually connect it to a track. In Ableton, apparently they assume you don't have send MIDI out to a keyboard until asked to so only the receive side of the USB-MIDI got 'grabbed'. In REAPER, just having the port enabled takes the OB-6 USB-MIDI out of circulation. The solution (assuming that you want to record MIDI in from the OB-6 and reserve the ability to "Print" at a later time) is to use the 'Bth' <both> choice for MIDI on the OB-6, use the USB side for the PlugSE and the DIN MIDI for Note and pedal information. Seems to work repeatedly. It's really a Windows problem (still no multi-client USB driver even with the latest Win10 PRO) but the different way that DAWs handle it causes confusion. I've found that just opening REAPER, and then opening the Standalone version of the OB-6 editor disables it from coming on line with USB only.

Now my problem is that I'm out of MIDI ports...sigh

On the filter list, the folks at SoundTower said they were unaware that there was any problem...don't know if anyone contacted them or just posted on the forum. They don't look at the forums (in their defense there are probably too many places to look...).  Any time that multiples of us agree on a problem, we should contact them directly. Their claim is the order they used was the right one when the product was released. I just got my OB-6 a few months ago, so I can't tell, but it is suspicious that their list is the same as the alphabetical list in the DSI manual. Anybody know if the order changed at some point?

Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #30 on: May 08, 2018, 02:18:12 PM »
Followup on my issues above.
I sent a copy of my "measured rant" above to the Soundtower support email. I received an initial reply that was somewhat 'boilerplate' (watch the setup video) and ignored some of the longer message points.
I then replied with a reassertion of the issues (really only 2) and received an excellent reply.

My problems with the PlugSE were relatively straightforward but unsatisfying. I didn't realize that just having a USB port <Enabled> had different responses in different DAWs, that led to my mixed results. In Cakewalk SONAR, the OB-6 USB-MIDI port doesn't get "Grabbed" until you actually connect it to a track. In Ableton, apparently they assume you don't have send MIDI out to a keyboard until asked to so only the receive side of the USB-MIDI got 'grabbed'. In REAPER, just having the port enabled takes the OB-6 USB-MIDI out of circulation. The solution (assuming that you want to record MIDI in from the OB-6 and reserve the ability to "Print" at a later time) is to use the 'Bth' <both> choice for MIDI on the OB-6, use the USB side for the PlugSE and the DIN MIDI for Note and pedal information. Seems to work repeatedly. It's really a Windows problem (still no multi-client USB driver even with the latest Win10 PRO) but the different way that DAWs handle it causes confusion. I've found that just opening REAPER, and then opening the Standalone version of the OB-6 editor disables it from coming on line with USB only.

Now my problem is that I'm out of MIDI ports...sigh

On the filter list, the folks at SoundTower said they were unaware that there was any problem...don't know if anyone contacted them or just posted on the forum. They don't look at the forums (in their defense there are probably too many places to look...).  Any time that multiples of us agree on a problem, we should contact them directly. Their claim is the order they used was the right one when the product was released. I just got my OB-6 a few months ago, so I can't tell, but it is suspicious that their list is the same as the alphabetical list in the DSI manual. Anybody know if the order changed at some point?

Excellent response today:


Re: Soundtower for OB-6 - My experience with it..
« Reply #31 on: May 11, 2018, 09:05:00 AM »
From Soundtower

"A new version (1.4.8) of the OB-6 Editor is available now and includes fixed FX assignment and a new sequencer."