Chipsounds Magic

Hello all!

I have been playing around with the Chipsounds demo in Renoise to see if I should buy it, and think it sounds absolutely AWESOME!!! (especially the 2a03) However, due to Renoise’s inabilities regarding portamento up/down to pitch with VSTs (I have no idea how that would work either) and other such technicalities, I am rendered unable to due things (like said slide to pitch) that are pretty fundamental to chiptunes. Does anybody have any ideas, suggestions, or wisdom that could help? Or perhaps Chipsounds and Renoise can’t work together like that? (I’ll admit, I am rather spoiled by LSDJ)

Thanks everybody!

When working with VST instruments, the only thing you can really do is use MIDI pitch bend. You can achieve this in Renoise by adding an Instrument MIDI Control device to one of your tracks, linking it to your instance of Chipsounds, and then controlling the pitch bend parameter there. You’ll probably have to play around with the pitch bend range in Chipsounds itself (“b.range” in the Controls tab) to get it under control, then experiment a bit with the parameter in Renoise to get a feel for the sliding behaviour.

You could also try to automate Chipsounds portamento time parameter, to vary the amount of note glide as and when you need it.

It’s a little bit quirky but definitely possible :)

Thanks dblue! I will have to try the MIDI linking. I did play around with the poramento in Chipsounds, but I was unable to surround the portamento notes to other non-portamento notes in the same sequence. That’s where I ran into trouble.

Thanks again!

Ah! I got it! I figured it out! I don’t know exactly why it works, but it works. I’ll figure it out eventually.

Thanks for your time dblue!


Don’t forget to post some rad chip music demos when you’re done :)

Almost exactly a year from my last post, here I am again!

I haven’t worked on chiptunes in a while, and since coming back, both Renoise and Chipsounds has upgraded! Great for improvement, bad for figuring out how to do this again. Here’s for troubleshooting again:

  1. I got Renoise to register and play nicely with Chipsounds. The only thing missing is the ability to slide from one note to another.
  2. The MIDI command “M0” bends the pitch, but everything after that is affected as well.
  3. Using more than one channel creates a break between the notes that are involved in the slide. I can make it sound like it is sliding from one note to another, but not the same instrument sliding from one note to another.
  4. I cannot use the external VST interface, because I would either have to have all of the notes slide into one another, or I would have to use another channel, creating the problem noted above.

Once again, I must ask for advice. Is there any way to do this, perhaps a new feature or a an old secret piece of wisdom, hidden from the likes of me?
Thanks in advance!

If you are working with chipsounds from a VST plugin that generates them, what holds you back from rendering the output to samples using the “Render Plugin to Sample” option? It has a basic feature to detect loop transient points that might work well for chipsounds. It would save you the hassle of fumbling with Midi Commands and you can simply use the Glide commands in Renoise
I mean chipsounds are usually very basic samples so should not be much of a problem to render.
Unless you are also playing a lot with pulse height and pulsewidth fluctuations, this would then require large samples where you can create proper pingpong loops.

I recommend all of the above: having sampled one-off hits like drums or effects that are the same every time (to save CPU,) sampled simple waves for use with Renoise column effects, and multiple instances of the VST for things only it can do. Even if you’re trying to “keep it real” and only use three note columns you can switch between the instruments so liberally that the result is quite realistic.