Sample Bank Granulator Engine Idea


This would be my first post with this account although I am not a stranger to this forum.

I have an idea that could possibly turn into something very useful. I’ve been messing with Reaktor a lot lately, specifically with the Massive sampler/groovebox. Basically this thing has 6 pre-loaded sample slots, each with their own envelope and such, but it includes a clever little “Grain Section” where you can control grain size and speed. So instead of having to feed your sample through an external granulation plugin’s buffer, it’s already in the sample slot. Therefore granulation tweaks and automations would be immediate and much tighter.

After a little pondering, I wondered what it would take to apply this same principle to the sample bank slots in Renoise. Each sample could have its own dedicated parameters such as Grain Size, Retrigger Speed and such. Offset would be unneccesary because you could do it using the regular 9xx code. Automation for these grain parameters can be controlled using their own envelopes in the instrument section like the volume, pan and filter envelopes, or from the effect column using specific codes.

In the near future I can post some screen shots of Reaktor’s Massive for better understanding, to those who aren’t familiar with it. It’s a simple concept from the top down although I don’t know how complex it would wind up being from the bottom up (programming-wise).


bump :ph34r:

if you want my opinion, well… I’ve never been interested in granularity, and this would be a very specific feature, something which is reasonably left to a plugin. Does any other digital audio workstation have a built-in granular synthetizer?

there have been similar debates recently, expecially regarding a beatslicer and a sidechaining metadevice: both of them have become a “we don’t need / we need it desperately” struggle, but in both cases they demonstrated that there could be a way to make both sides happy. for example, an AudioAmplitude metadevice would make both sidechaining guys and their foes happy, but honestly I don’t see how a grainer would be of benefit for people who don’t use granularity.

I don’t want to bash your idea, of course: if there are people who like it, it’s fine.

these are the ones im aware of.

Fl studio - see ‘granulizer’ / automate sample-start/-end

Reason 2 and up (no daw) - via normal nnt sampler… so its not intended as a “granular synth” but u can use it as one (thx to panda, Youtube-video )

buzz - e.g. see ld_grain or ld_grainfx

renoise - via offset programming

ableton live - see sampler/impulse

indeed I forgot to focus on this also: you could already do graining, but of course a dedicated tool would be better

There aren’t too many other DAWs that I know of that feature the use of granular synthesis other than Reaktor. Over the past few days I’ve been using certain pieces of that program as VST instruments in Renoise and the closest thing to what I am trying to explain among those would be this thing called Splitter:

Basically it is a glorified (very glorified at that) sample bank. Where you see the wav is obviously where you load in your samples. I have outlined with a red rectangle the section that controls grain paremeters and such. They go like this:
SEL: Selects the different samples in the sample bank (for example, you could have several different breaks loaded and flip through them on the fly). Underneath it is the OFFSET param.
PITCH: Controls pitch of the sample.
SPEED: Controls the speed of the grains.
GRAIN: Controls the size of the grains.

I’ve been setting all the parameters as midi controllable with the MIDICC plugin. It’s a bit cumbersome to work with because you have to basically use 4 different effect code columns, but the results are worth the work I think.

Of course, it would be best if aspects of this were translated into the Renoise sample bank itself. If the speed and grain parameters could be incorporated into each sample slot it would pretty much eliminate having to use an external device for granulation.

As for KTGranulator, I’d have to download it again and give it another shot. I tried it a while ago when I first started messing around with granular activity but due to my inexperience it kind of confused me.