Workflow Question: Pros And Cons To Sampling A Vst Synth And Best Prac

I would be interested to hear/read the pros and cons for sampling a synth as I don’t currently use this approach, but have noticed people mentioning this approach.

Plus how does one sample synths for Renoise? I do have Renoise 2.5 and noticed the capture instrument ability. How does this work compared to the pre 2.5 approach? Any discussion about this approach and how to do it would be appreciated.

Regards, James

One pro is that you can share the project with people who do not have the same set of instrument plugins.

A con is that you loose some of the expressiveness of the instrument by sampling it, since the standard capture just captures a single velocity.

I’m sure there are more, but those two are the primaries for me.


  1. Some people who don’t have your VST can play the song
  2. You can use Renoise effects such as panning, pitch bend, and playing a sample backwards
  3. You can render FX to a sample


  1. Using the “Auto-Loop (crossfade)” feature can mess things up and make… say… a piano sound unnatural
  2. Huge scads of samples can mess up your hard drive with, like, several MB of samples
  3. Can be difficult to figure out what to set the sample length to…

Biggest pro for me is that by rendering vsti to sample, you can create completely new type of sounds out of ‘standard’ synth sounds by adding looping/vst/dsp/pattern-command tricks. You could leave the normal vsti in the instrument list and add a sampled variation to use as a contrast in your song etc.

I would not have thought of that, but I guess the pattern effects could solve that.

Right, that would take some experimentation

It is nice to have more options for effects :) and the layering idea makes sense.

Kool and thanks for the replies …

Regards, James

Capture instrument is the only feature of renoise that I rarely use , why should I make samples of a vsti when I have the vsti itself ?
If I want to process the track that has the vsti with effect commands , I just render it to selection .

Possible, in some cases it might also come in handy simply to save yourself some cpu resources as some VSTI plugins are quite heavy on the CPU.
Ofcourse you would not need a complete noterange to sample in that case and you could settle for a smaller sample-size and less exact looping.
All a matter of choice depending what kind of computer you use Renoise on…

In my experience, there are inconsistencies with some of Oatmeal VST’s sequencing and sustain, so the rendered samples sound fairly different than the VST. I only tried once though, to move a song from windows to mac.

The trick is more to create an as dry as possible sound (without effects and no sustain, yet long enough that the auto-loop works) with the plugin and then try to use the instrument envelopes and DSP effects to achieve the desired output.
It is hard to capture a complete plugin preset profile if variables that make the sound authentic are no longer variable after the capture.
The instrument envelopes are then your new variables and may help you better accept the outcome if you start with a dry sound. At least the result won’t turn out that disappointing.