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An update on the future of the Sequencer

Discussion in 'MASCHINE Area' started by Florian G @ NI, Aug 11, 2016.

  1. Drifter

    Drifter NI Product Owner

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    476
    Yeah I can see the difficulties stated. Anyway what would need to be changed in NKS to have moving images in it like Serum's wavetable or Razor's waveform? In terms of having them displayed on the NI hardware screens themselves.
     
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  2. HammyHavoc

    HammyHavoc NI Product Owner

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    1,230
    You mean like a proper visualizer of the waveform in real-time?
     
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  3. Drifter

    Drifter NI Product Owner

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    476
    Yup. Ableton Push is ahead of Maschine right now
     
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  4. HammyHavoc

    HammyHavoc NI Product Owner

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    1,230
    What would need to be changed: far more than NKS. NKS as it stands is just a standard for mapping controls. They're still using individually sized PNGs rather than SVGs, way behind the times. I don't see real-time anything coming to NI's controllers any time soon in terms of visuals. Silly really, because the hardware is more than capable of doing it. Viewing the waveform when sampling is very effective, would work well for synths.

    If NI were to introduce it, it would probably only be for first-party software. Just sounds like something that would happen rather than introduce a standardized API and doing it in a modern, civilized capacity.
     
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  5. van Grieg

    van Grieg NI Product Owner

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    232
    Well that's how I got here after all, so yeah, I guess you are right. But that was because we lost our keyboard player, I needed to do some backing tracks and play keys/samples live occasionally, so I started looking for a keyboard, dismissed standalone hardware, found KK. Also, wanted to have some sort of a DAW controller for Ableton, and found Jam...

    But generally guitar players are an ultra-conservative bunch, obsessed with tubes and instruments from the 50s. Even the most amazing new digital tech does what, replicate that ancient gear. I don't hear much about inventing new sounds, it's mostly in some conservation mode. Guess that's a reason why guitar music is as good as dead these days, IMO.

    Anyway, at least people are slowly getting rid of those stacks on stage and switching to modelers, which improves sound at live shows tremendously.

    The Helix is good, although not quite in the same league with Fractal stuff, IMO. But good. If I were using a floor modeler, I'd get a Helix. Right now I'm using its plugin version for home practicing. There are better sounding plugins though, although not as versatile and convenient. Mercuriall stuff is excellent, IMO. Other packs have this or that model done good. Helix is just a better more balanced package overall. Expensive.
     
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  6. van Grieg

    van Grieg NI Product Owner

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    232
    I've used both Push and Jam. Kept the Jam. The screen on the Push is nice, but encoders aren't as useful as touchstrips to me.
     
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  7. HammyHavoc

    HammyHavoc NI Product Owner

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    1,230
    It's interesting you should say it's dead, it's going through somewhat of a revival currently. Guitar-based bands charting well again, interest in the instrument is coming back. I'd written it off as dead, but it's surprisingly recovering.

    The generation of players coming up are more interested in bang for buck than vintage hardware. It's this same crowd that NI is chasing with budget keyboards and the bizarre screen on the Mikro MK3. It makes more sense for most modern players to be able to make a wide variety of sounds than do a handful very well, especially if you can do a lot cheaply.
     
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  8. Drifter

    Drifter NI Product Owner

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    476
    That's a shame, because if they released a standard API it would be game changing for them. NI have the best MIDI keyboard controllers in the world for that kind of thing, and everyone who could afford one would be rushing out to buy one if that API were released. Imagine being able to look at Massive's perform envelopes , or the waveform in Arturia's Pigments.
     
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  9. HammyHavoc

    HammyHavoc NI Product Owner

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    1,230
    If they did it, I/we would be bringing a lot of interesting odds and sods to the platform, speaking as a Max/MSP/Jitter nerd. :- ) I really want NI to do it, I just know that they probably won't. It's a risk, risks seldom pay off. NI is chasing consumers rather than professionals. It's a sorry state of affairs.
     
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  10. van Grieg

    van Grieg NI Product Owner

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    232
    I don't know, maybe it's a case when it's difficult to see the picture from the inside, but... To me, it's dead in the sense that there are no "guitar heroes" anymore, and not much interesting is really happening in the more mainstream part of it, and that's been the state after grunge ended in the 90s. Sure, there are occasional catchy tunes that pop up, there's Muse, if you can call it guitar music, which is, whether you're a fan or not, something definitely interesting. Most other bands of the day may be charting, but I can hardly tell one from another, and I don't see any progress. Maybe I'm just being an old fart crying about the golden age long gone, but I do enjoy some electronic music and find much more life there. I listen to stuff like Shpongle more often than anything with guitars. It's just... more alive?

    I blame three things - the music industry changed, the society changed, technology didn't deliver.

    The internet killed the album. Previously, a band could record a couple of great songs people would like, and sell an album at 15 bucks per buyer. Now they can sell separate songs at $1 per buyer. And production is expensive, traveling with all the stuff is expensive, gear is damned expensive, so the middle of the whole pyramid sort of collapsed. There are tons of interesting niche bands who can hardly make ends meet, and there are superpopular bands that play stadiums. It's hard to survive if you don't gather stadiums, and labels play it super safe and try to make all bands sound safe. Like the previous ones. There's just no flow of stuff from the underground to the mainstream, no money backing experimental stuff, and stagnation as a result.

    Then there's this whole think positive say no to drugs and smoking political correctness BS that's taken over the world. It's just not cool to be a rebel these days. Who are the "non-conformists" of today? Damned hipsters, that's who! What kind of rock and roll can survive in such a venomous atmosphere?

    Then there's technology. When I first used a subscription service, it was Zune Pass. Man, it was so excellent I can't find words to praise it enough. Its recommendation engine was brilliant. It had those "influenced by" buttons where you could go down the history of a song you liked, and find new stuff you didn't think even existed. That brought multiple me joyous discoveries. But then Microsoft started crippling it to bring the price down, until it became a total mediocrity like everything else, until it died a dull shameful death. People want free or cheap services which just push out the safest stuff commercially. Now, you'd think that with internet's capabilities discovery wouldn't be a problem. But somehow it is. Theoretically, people's tastes are still as diverse as ever, and I'm sure that if someone figures out the tech and especially the licensing part of delivering truly personalized music selection to people, they would make billions.

    Well, sure, bang for the buck is key, especially now that you can't really make any money with this kind of music. But the bang for the buck gear still tries to replicate the ancient stuff. A "good modeler" is one that sounds exactly like some stupid Dumble amp.
     
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  11. HammyHavoc

    HammyHavoc NI Product Owner

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    1,230
    Streaming platforms/discovery are the new record labels. Especially now that streaming platforms are allowing direct distribution, cutting out traditional middlemen distributors and outsourcing the things that labels would otherwise do. The game is the same as it ever was, just the revenue streams and way in which things happen are different. For most sustainable projects, the main money is coming from revenue streams related to the music/entity itself, but not the music itself for the most part. Most artists never "made it" in the past (popularity and/or money), it's the same now. The barrier for admission is lower than ever before, but it's been low for a long while, everything is cheaper than ever in terms of making records and distributing them. Don't get me wrong though, compared to what most artists are making from streaming services, it's not going to break even, but that's not where the money is.

    I think a lot of what guitar is about and has been for a long time is chasing a sound that's been and gone, and whilst it's a great sound (got a sizeable collection of amps in the studio and a massive pedal collection), I think guitarists are afraid to take risks for the most part because there's a "right"/traditional way of doing things, and anybody that deviates too much from the traditional is a target of criticism. It's funny, Tom Morello was shunned by the purists and still is, and now, almost thirty years later, the guitarists coming up think what he did is fairly normal and not all that groundbreaking because they didn't experience what came before it. But the purists still shun people like Tom Morello because it isn't just a guitar into a classic amp rehashing the same old blues-derivative stuff. All that's been done to death. Guitars for the most part aren't any different than they were a few decades ago, it's not like synths where there's new forms of synthesis, new techniques and bits of gear.

    I don't feel like rock has been "dangerous", rebellious or even all that "alternative" for a very long time. Coming from the grim, crusty punk scene of Northern England, I feel like it's been self-parodying across most genres for decades at this point. Nine Inch Nails was that ultimate crossover for me, guitar stopped being guitar, synths stopped being synths, it just started being sound. Completely altered my perception of what making records was about. Synths are infinitely more versatile, but I'm still a major guitar lover. These days, it feels like the studio is the instrument rather than any one particular thing or piece of gear.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2019
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  12. Drifter

    Drifter NI Product Owner

    Messages:
    476
    Maybe we should be friends then. I had similar feelings about NIN.
     
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  13. van Grieg

    van Grieg NI Product Owner

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    Fully agree with you here.

    Funny you mention Tom Morello, as just today on a guitar forum there was a discussion of his "rig rundown" where he says he's been using the same gear for like 20 or 30 years (am I really that old? :)), and people were condescendingly saying that you can't expect everyone to be creative, so not changing gear is okay.
     
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  14. tempsperdu

    tempsperdu NI Product Owner

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    2,121
    LOL Quite by accident I saw his rig break down on YouTube the other day and he decided not to keep chasing gear but at a point say this is what I am going to use and not keep changing. This is what I am going to have to make work. Keef Richards says it doesn't matter what guitar I get I still get them to sound the same. I.E. It's what you do with what you've got that becomes the defining factor.
     
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  15. ajb1965

    ajb1965 NI Product Owner

    Messages:
    40
    It depends on what you consider a guitar hero? Do you mean someone who's talent, style, and equipment, influences or aspires young players? In that case yes, there are still plenty of guitar heroes for this generation, they have just been primarily confined to the YouTube space which is a shame. Nonetheless they have hundreds of thousands of followers, millions collectively. So much so that the brands feel some are worthy of a namesake guitar. Tom Quayle has a signature Ibanez guitar, Rob Scallon has a signature Chapman. Others are banking on their YouTube popularity and dispensing with a signature guitar and just starting their own lines like Ola Englund's Solar and of course, Chapman. While I agree guitar based music is on the decline in the charts, IMHO those charts will matter less and less as more people seek music outside of traditional channels.
     
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  16. ajb1965

    ajb1965 NI Product Owner

    Messages:
    40
    I 100% agree with you. Back in the olden days, guitarists like Mark Mothersbaugh and Adrian Belew were often discounted and/or ridiculed for their approach to the instrument. Ironically, today they are often refer to as visionaries.
     
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  17. tempsperdu

    tempsperdu NI Product Owner

    Messages:
    2,121
    Are we not men?
    We are rugrats .....................:Do_O
     
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  18. van Grieg

    van Grieg NI Product Owner

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    232
    I mean overall influence in guitar world and outside of it. Household names, people every teenager knows, that kind of stuff.

    There are of course a lot of great musicians out there, but they are mostly niche phenomena. Nothing wrong with being niche, and it’s not like I care about charts per se, but to reiterate, this is important because of side effects - stuff from the fringes needs to trickle down to mainstream to create “new normal” all the time, and I just don’t see that happening much.

    Rage Against the Machine was a great example of rap/hip hop influencing guitar music, creating something different. Nine Inch Nails mentioned above is another example of genre-melting-pot stuff. Limp Bizkit took it to true mainstream level. I’ve seen some interesting things at clubs, but those aren’t getting anywhere. Those guys certainly need some professional production and polish to go further. Ola and the like do gear reviews but I’m not even sure I’ve ever heard what they actually play.
     
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  19. Kaldosh

    Kaldosh NI Product Owner

    Messages:
    1,808
    Surely not.... Only good old heavyntage fashion one
     
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  20. Nii-Teiko

    Nii-Teiko NI Product Owner

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    223
    keep the thread on this path. it's decent
     
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