Tales from Sibelius 6 and VDL

I have to admit, every upgrade of Sibelius and VDL is bitter-sweet for me. I really enjoy the new features, but there is always a potentially confusing and cumbersome re-mapping  & re-configuration. Or, there are features among Sibelius, VDL and Kontakt that don't jive well. I spend weeks on the phone with tech support with all the the players involved only for them to tell me it's the other guys' software causing the jam... Meanwhile, my scores are staring me in the face. In one instance, I had to downgrade Sibelius to an earlier version because I was using 3rd party sample libraries. Usually, it's Jim that gets me out of the bind, in his defense. The Tapspace support usually puts the other folks to shame.

With this new update, there was nothing!!! Nothing, but install, download the Sib. 5.2.5 Template... and start writing!!! It seems like Sibelius runs faster and more efficiently (however, I have no technical evidence to back this up.) The ReWire to DAW (in my case ProTools) is worth the price of admission. As percussion writers, we can have a huge amount of score entries that wind up colliding. The magnetic layout has saved me hours alone. Also, the virtual keyboard for note entry has saved me from having to lug around a physical keyboard controller!!!

The Tapspace reorganization of the VDL Sibelius Template ReadMe file is great as well. I used to be an unmovable Finale user for years, but switched to Sibelius about 5 years ago. I think these two products work VERY seamlessly together. Kudos to Tapspace and Sibelius! Can't wait for VDL 3!

Tony Lymon
Hattiesburg, Mississippi
That's really good to hear.  Mine should be arriving tomorrow and am very excited.
Tony - you just made my blood pressure drop 40 points!!! 

I've been drooling over the new Sibelius 6 features since discovering the new version.  My upgrade arrives this week, and I've been frantically searching around to see if I'm going to be able to write my marching show is Sibelius 6 or if I'll have to work with 5 still.  VDL has become such an integrated part of the work I do...can't imagine not having it.

I'm curious...Does your VDL integrate with the new ";non-Kontakt"; playback system, or is VDL still running from Kontakt alongside the new interface?

Thanks for easing my stress level!!!
Joe Ferguson

Tony - glad to hear things are working well for you, and thanks for the kudos!

As for VDL within Sibelius 6 - VDL still works via Kontakt Player 2. So you'll still host that the same way you did in Sibelius 5. If, however, you used to set up a KP2 instance for Essentials, you'll no longer do that for those sounds. Instead, run those from the Sibelius Player (with ";essentials"; sound set), and you'll be good to go.
Geez, what an exciting time for gear heads! First Sib 6, then the new iPhone 3G S, soon will be iPhone OS 3.0. All that PLUS GI JOE! I just can't take it!!!!!
[quote author=JoeFerguson link=topic=3134.msg16548#msg16548 date=1244491637]
Tony - you just made my blood pressure drop 40 points!!! 

I've been drooling over the new Sibelius 6 features since discovering the new version.  My upgrade arrives this week, and I've been frantically searching around to see if I'm going to be able to write my marching show is Sibelius 6 or if I'll have to work with 5 still.  VDL has become such an integrated part of the work I do...can't imagine not having it.

I'm curious...Does your VDL integrate with the new ";non-Kontakt"; playback system, or is VDL still running from Kontakt alongside the new interface?

Thanks for easing my stress level!!!
Joe Ferguson

[/quote]

Yes! It works great with the Sibelius Sound Essentials! I prefer to use the Kontakt Player 2 for the VDL stuff just for consistency's sake. You just go to your playback devices, as normal, and make a VST or AU Kontakt Player 2 instance active in your devices panel. Make sure it's on the correct VDL 5.2.5 sound set (which should automatically selected), save it... and start flyin'! Make sure you have the Sibelius 5.2.5 VDL Template and place the sound set .xml file in your sounds folder.

I also use Kontakt 3 for 3rd party wind sounds. I'm also integrating EWQL Symphonic Choirs as a VST instance using their new ";PLAY"; sound engine and FXpansion BFD2 drum module as an Audio Unit. So far, all the kids are playing nice on my MacBook Pro. It zaps memory, but I am exploring using a dedicated hard drive to store the sample libraries... I haven't used them all at once. I plan on doing that in the next weeks to come. I'll give you a full report if my machine melts.

I agree with the the other guy... It's a great time for Audio Geek-etry!
This is all very good to hear!  I typically update and then remember AFTER the fact and end up pulling out my few remaining strands of hair that I have.  I'm still thinking that I don't want to waste a day (or more) taking a risk that could stop my production until later this summer.

Those of you that are working with it, please keep us updated with any tidbits of advice or information.

Key Poulan
Since it will allow you to keeping using Sibelius 5, I decided to install Sibelius 6. I was surprised
how easy it was to get up and running. The speed improvements, virtual keyboard, and magnetic
layout are worth the price. I look forward to finishing my project so I can play with it some more.

Brady
I have found only 1 small problem (or big, depending on perspective).

If you input stickings, the dynamics will force the sticking to move (magnetic layout).  Unless you move the dynamics further away from the staff.  There is no specific option for Percussion stickings in the magnetic layout options.  So take that for what it is worth.

Aside from that issue, I have seen nothing wrong with the upgrade.
[quote author=Flamdragz link=topic=3134.msg16588#msg16588 date=1244787654]
I have found only 1 small problem (or big, depending on perspective).

If you input stickings, the dynamics will force the sticking to move (magnetic layout).  Unless you move the dynamics further away from the staff.  There is no specific option for Percussion stickings in the magnetic layout options.  So take that for what it is worth.

Aside from that issue, I have seen nothing wrong with the upgrade.
[/quote]

That is less of a problem and more of just going in a fixing the order in which the Magnetic Layout prioritizes what stuff gets moved first. Do as follows:

1) Layout > Magnetic Layout Options
2) Select ";Misc. Text";
3) Change the number in the number in the left drop down box from 9 to 7

This will group it with lyrics and the percussion stickings style should now take priority over expression text. I'm not how this will affect other text styles, since ";Misc. Text"; probably includes a pretty large collection of text styles. So, if other text styles start to look weird, this would be why. However, I'm willing to bet that should get you going.
I have found one other issue using Sib 6 and the VDL 2.5 Sib 5.2 template.  I wrote 4 8th notes in unison bass drum, and only the right hands play.  The left hands don't come through.

Has anyone else had this problem?
That is a known issue with the template, and is being addressed. I have just been using all right hand unisons for the time being.
Sounds good!  Thanks for the response.

Is there any idea how long it will take to update the template for use with Sibelius 6?
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