Like the trumpet, the trombone is one of the most versatile, dynamic, flexible and expressive musical instruments. It covers an incredibly wide range of sounds and moods. Whether a classical sacred work, a military march or a powerful fanfare, a pop song or a huge orchestral arrangement – the trombone is an indispensable instrument in a vast majority of musical styles. However, it is extremely difficult to emulate, even more than the trumpet, due to the presence of the slide – a true challenge for developers of virtual instruments. That is why we chose it next.
The Trombone family expands Samplemodeling technologies beyond the original limits. An entirely new class of Harmonic Alignment has been developed, allowing continuous transition across virtually infinite dynamics, at the same time perfectly preserving the peculiar, spiky waveform of this instrument. Multi-microphone anechoic recording, coupled to a specially devised �early reflections� impulse response, allowed to reproduce the full, rich timbre of the instrument including its radiation pattern, adding at same time a virtual space to the anechoic sound.
The base material of the instruments (two Tenor, one Valve and one Bass Trombone) consists of 714 MB of samples, chromatically performed by a professional trombone player over a very wide dynamic range. All samples are unlooped, and have a minimum duration of 8 sec. As �The Trumpet�, the Trombone engine is structured according to an adaptive model, based on the performance �fingerprints� of the real instrument. The purpose of the model is to minimize the differences between the real phrases and those played by the virtual instrument.
Proprietary modal resonance IRs, innovative techniques for sample modulation, and advanced AI midi processing are used for real time construction of all articulations and morphing across dynamics, vibrato, legato, portamento, trills, vibrato-like endings, shakes and so forth.
Pseudo-random detuning, based on real performance-derived trends, is another outstanding new feature of The Trombone, adding further realism.
A completely new chapter concerns the slide. The real trombone is one of the few wind instruments that can produce a true glissando up to six semitones. Though very difficult to obtain with a sample-based instrument, the effect of the slide has been perfectly reproduced in our virtual trombone by a novel application of the �Harmonic Alignment� technology. Ultra-realistic slide effects can be obtained by proper use of the pitchbend, but are also automatically activated by overlapped legato. As in the real instrument, a continuous glissando effect will be obtained if the portamento interval is within +/- 3 semitones.
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