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Viewing topic "Waveform management on Flash Boards"

   
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Posted on: November 01, 2016 @ 10:36 AM
dsetto
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Hello. I’m trying to get a sense of a game plan for managing loading & deleting waveforms to my flash boards. I imagine I’ll simply add waveforms, and then begin deleting waveforms when I start to fill up my board. And I’ll only need to format and start from scratch if I end up with more waveforms I want deleted than kept. (Like mistaken duplicates.)

1. Can I load & delete samples from the flash boards without trying to keep waveform collections together?

Consider a flash board that that has had many waveforms loaded & deleted. I suspect the XF adds new waveforms to the first available “data slots”. And so, I’d guess the new waveforms that form a particular multi-waveform voice will have its associated waveforms spread out randomly throughout the flash board.
I suspect that playing a Voice that has waveforms spread out randomly over a flash board or 2, and also SDRAM & ROM, will play just as fast as a Voice whose waveforms happen to be next to each other on the flash board.
Do you agree?

2. Also, when deleting waveforms from a flash board, is the “data space” reasonably reclaimed?

Thank you.

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Posted on: November 01, 2016 @ 04:47 PM
5pinDIN
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The read speed of the flash modules is sufficiently fast so that location of data on it isn’t an issue.

After significant deletion, using the Optimize function is advisable.
See (7) [SF4] Optimize on page 230 of the XF Reference Manual.

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Posted on: November 02, 2016 @ 08:11 AM
dsetto
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Great. Thanks for pointing out the Optimize function!

Is that kind of like windows defragmenter, rearranging files to contiguous storage locations?

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Posted on: November 02, 2016 @ 04:26 PM
5pinDIN
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dsetto - 02 November 2016 08:11 AM

Great. Thanks for pointing out the Optimize function!

You’re welcome.

 

dsetto -

Is that kind of like windows defragmenter, rearranging files to contiguous storage locations?

According to the manual…
“Optimization consolidates areas of used and unused (available) memory to create the largest possible area of contiguous available memory.”

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Posted on: November 03, 2016 @ 02:45 PM
meatballfulton
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My way of working with flash may seem weird to some, but it keeps all the samples for all the libraries in the flash. What I rearrange are the voices in the user banks.

My method is as follows:

1. Format the flash
2. Load the first library. Save an All file with FL1 and FL2.
3. Load the second library. Save an All file with FL1 and FL2 (this has the samples from both libraries).
4. Repeat until all libraries are in flash.

Now I have a number of All files, each one with the voices, arpeggios and performances that go with a particular library but also all the samples from every library that was loaded before. Those voices point to the proper waveforms. The final All file also includes a full backup of the flash contents. I can then go into any All file and load any voice into any user bank location and it will play. This can all be done with just the XF and some USB or network storage.

Because of the way the XF deals with performances and arpeggios, keeping them in sync with the library voices is still complicated. The Melas tools can really help here. Even if you never need to edit a sample, the Waveform Editor lets you organize arpeggios and of course the Performance Editor can be used to manage Performances.

To me, it’s important to keep every sample in flash all the time is critical because adding a wavefrom back after it has been deleted is messy. If the waveforms never move, it really simplifies things.

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Posted on: November 04, 2016 @ 08:43 AM
dsetto
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meatballfulton - 03 November 2016 02:45 PM

My way of working with flash …

Excellent. Thank you! I am very interested in flashboard workflows as I’m new to them.

What is the value of making an ALL file after loading each library? (I didn’t understand it when I read the Motifator flash session support article either.)
In other words, I see the value of making an ALL file after completing loading however many libraries you are loading that day, or in that session. It’s a backup, just in c…. Oh, …

I get it. Okay, I think I get it.

meatballfulton - 03 November 2016 02:45 PM

I can then go into any All file and load any voice into any user bank location and it will play. This can all be done with just the XF and some USB or network storage.


If you make an ALL file after loading each & every library, then, and only then - once done loading all libraries - can you browse your usb/network storage, and select the unique ALL file corresponding to a unique library, and you can browse and recall any voice. And it’s quick because all the waveforms are on the flash boards. And all the unique libraries (aka, unique ALL files) can be in one place, next to each other.

Conversely, this ability to fairly thoughtlessly browse & select any voice from any library wouldn’t be available without having saved the ALL file after the loading of each & every library.
- Is this right?

...
That said, if you didn’t do it this way, I suspect one can load in the library’s voice bank without samples, and that would work. But, that may require a little more thinking/organization at that moment, I suppose.

I’ve already added a few libraries, and I stopped making ALL files after each one because I was in a rush. (Rushing is always good!) … I have the hunch, that for those libraries that I did not make a unique ALL file, I can reload just the voice bank, without the samples, and then create the ALL file; and I could get on track with your approach. Is that right?

I haven’t dealt much with performances, arpeggios, or Melas tools yet. So, I may resurrect this when I get there. But, I’ll try to remember “when performance/arpeggio management, then Melas tools.”

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Posted on: November 04, 2016 @ 12:08 PM
cmayhle
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dsetto - 04 November 2016 08:43 AM

...I’ve already added a few libraries, and I stopped making ALL files after each one because I was in a rush. (Rushing is always good!) … I have the hunch, that for those libraries that I did not make a unique ALL file, I can reload just the voice bank, without the samples, and then create the ALL file; and I could get on track with your approach. Is that right?....

Not to put too fine a point on it, but once you have your Sample data installed on your Flash Board, you do not want to continue to LOAD ALL files that contain Sample data “without the samples” (specifically, without sample is the option I am referring to), as literally stated.

Even though LOADING “without sample” each time would not re-LOAD the audio data, it would inadvertently re-LOAD the waveform data, in duplicate, triplicate, and so on.  Your board would begin to fill up with unnecessary duplicate data.

Rather than repeat the entire explanation here, you will probably find This Thread useful.

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Posted on: November 05, 2016 @ 02:19 PM
meatballfulton
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dsetto - 04 November 2016 08:43 AM

What is the value of making an ALL file after loading each library?

Let’s assume each library has exactly 64 samples.

You load library #1, the samples go into locations 1-64. You load library #2, the samples go into locations 65-128. And so on. This is the most important thing to understand about loading libraries...the samples end up in the flash in the first available spot, which will be after the last sample from the last library you had loaded. The XF makes the translation of the pointers from the voice to the samples for you automatically.

Saved All file #1 has samples 1-64 voices use samples 1-64

Saved All file #2 has samples 1-128 voices use samples 65-128

Saved All file #3 has samples 1-192 voices use samples 129-192

Saved All file #4 has samples 1-256 voices use samples 193-256

Saved All file #5 has samples 1-320 voices use samples 257-320

With all 320 samples now in the flash, if you load a voice from any saved All file, the connection between any voice and the sample(s) it uses is still correct.

PS you could save the All files without samples as long as after you are done you save one additional All file with samples as a backup for the flash contents.

EDIT: when I wrote samples that means waveforms in Yamaha speak.

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Posted on: November 07, 2016 @ 02:38 PM
dsetto
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thank you, all. will process & you know i’ll be back if i still have questions. :)

great forum. great board. great participants. grateful.

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Posted on: November 09, 2016 @ 01:54 PM
dsetto
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cmayhle - 04 November 2016 12:08 PM

… Even though LOADING “without sample” each time would not re-LOAD the audio data, it would inadvertently re-LOAD the waveform data, in duplicate, triplicate, and so on.  Your board would begin to fill up with unnecessary duplicate data. …

Ok, I get this.
cmayhle - 04 November 2016 12:08 PM

… you will probably find This Thread useful.

Thanks for this link. It’s got depth.
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Posted on: November 09, 2016 @ 02:36 PM
dsetto
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Joined  01-24-2014
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Consider a scenario where I’ve …
- loaded 4 libraries onto FL1, one bank at a time, always into User 1
- failed to make an archive ALL file after loading each libary
- Library One is the first library loaded.

Is there a way I could load just the Voices of Library One, the whole bank at a time, into a User bank on the XF, without
- loading the samples/waveforms into the SDRAM (on this 2nd attempt)
- loading duplicates of the samples/waveforms into an FL (on this 2nd attempt) ?

Based on what I’ve tried, I will assume the answer is no. I like meatballfulton’s suggestion of making archived ALL files after loading each library. I will start over doing it that way. I am asking this question to try to get a better handle flash file management.

---
Here’s what I tried:
1. loaded 4 libraries onto FL1.
2. then, I went to the vendor’s original library file, for Library One. (That’s because I hadn’t made an archived ALL file made immediately after having initially loaded the library to FL1.) Then, from the vendor’s originaly library file, I tried to load one bank voice back into User 1, keeping in mind attempting to not load waveforms or samples to FL1.

However, when I attempted to do step 2 above, when loading, I was limited to either loading the samples into my USR (SDRAM), or onto FL1 or FL2. I tired both.
When I chose to USR (SDRAM), as expected, the samples loaded into the SDRAM. And the the oscillators in the Voices pointed to Waveforms in the SDRAM. I was hoping to somehow have the oscillators magically point to the Waveforms that had already been installed into FL1 in a previous session.
And, when I experimented with loading the vendor’s original library into FL1, well, as you’d expect it loaded duplicate samples & waveforms, to my FL1.

Thank you.

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Posted on: November 09, 2016 @ 03:13 PM
dsetto
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By the way, I definitely will format my FL1, and begin again following the two flash articles here on motifator. And not in a rush.

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Posted on: November 09, 2016 @ 03:22 PM
dsetto
Total Posts:  401
Joined  01-24-2014
status: Enthusiast

For myself & others:

I believe the answer to my issue lies in this excerpt from the main flash article here on motifator:

“When you start to create your own customized Waveform and Sample setups on your FLASH Board(s) make sure you make a full backup of your customized Library. That is, SAVE as an ALL data file “with samples”. Keep that as an archive file. And anytime you change your Flash board installed Waveforms and Samples, make sure you create a new archive file.”

Though, I am not sure I fully grasp why. Although, I think it’s related to ...

From the Flashboard Session article:
“By installing the Sample data to your FLASH BOARD, the VOICES now are directed to look at your Flash Board for the audio data. You need to make a file that contains this information.”

And a good reminder:
“Then verify your newly added VOICES are all accessing data from your FL1 Board and everything is as you expect… then make your NEW ARCHIVE file ("All" data “with samples")"

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Posted on: November 09, 2016 @ 05:34 PM
5pinDIN
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dsetto - 09 November 2016 02:36 PM

Consider a scenario where I’ve …
- loaded 4 libraries onto FL1, one bank at a time, always into User 1
- failed to make an archive ALL file after loading each libary
- Library One is the first library loaded.

Is there a way I could load just the Voices of Library One, the whole bank at a time, into a User bank on the XF, without
- loading the samples/waveforms into the SDRAM (on this 2nd attempt)
- loading duplicates of the samples/waveforms into an FL (on this 2nd attempt) ?


Based on what I’ve tried, I will assume the answer is no. I like meatballfulton’s suggestion of making archived ALL files after loading each library. I will start over doing it that way. I am asking this question to try to get a better handle flash file management.

---
Here’s what I tried:
1. loaded 4 libraries onto FL1.
2. then, I went to the vendor’s original library file, for Library One. (That’s because I hadn’t made an archived ALL file made immediately after having initially loaded the library to FL1.) Then, from the vendor’s originaly library file, I tried to load one bank voice back into User 1, keeping in mind attempting to not load waveforms or samples to FL1.

However, when I attempted to do step 2 above, when loading, I was limited to either loading the samples into my USR (SDRAM), or onto FL1 or FL2. I tired both.
When I chose to USR (SDRAM), as expected, the samples loaded into the SDRAM. And the the oscillators in the Voices pointed to Waveforms in the SDRAM. I was hoping to somehow have the oscillators magically point to the Waveforms that had already been installed into FL1 in a previous session.
And, when I experimented with loading the vendor’s original library into FL1, well, as you’d expect it loaded duplicate samples & waveforms, to my FL1.


Thank you.

In reading your post, I get the impression that you may have missed the purpose of using the Load option “None”. Since that option wasn’t available with the original XF OS, it’s not covered in the Reference Manual - the “None” loading option was introduced with OS version 1.10. See Additional option in file loading operation on page 16 of the XF Supplementary Manual (http://download.yamaha.com/file/53105).

Although you hadn’t saved “All” files as you added library data to FL1, it still should have been possible to load the “Library One” Voices and have them point to the correct Samples/Waveforms. (That would not be true for the remainder of the libraries.) Loading to FL1 using option “None” should have worked in your “Library One” scenario.

By the way, since when new or after a factory reset the XF Voice Bank User 1 contains unique Voices (ones not found in the Preset banks), you might want to load libraries to a bank other than User 1.

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Posted on: November 10, 2016 @ 04:18 AM
meatballfulton
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Every library expects to load it’s waveforms starting at the very first location in memory, whether RAM or flash. When loading to flash, the XF automatically loads the waveforms to the first available location, which if you have loaded other waveforms previously will not be the very first location. It then adjusts the pointers in the voices to point to the adjusted waveform locations.

Now if you do not save an All file at this point, when you want to reload the voices from the original library file the pointers will point to the wrong waveforms (or worse no waveforms at all).

Saving the All files is the only way to get a copy of the adjusted pointers.

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Posted on: November 10, 2016 @ 06:55 AM
dsetto
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Thanks, 5pin. I made a mistake in my presented example. What I called “Library One” arbitrarily, was actually “Library Two”. And yet, I still learned valuable information from your response. The crucial point I take from yours & meatballfulton’s response is that one cannot load just Voices (sans waveforms & Samples) from the vendor’s orginal library file and expect them to properly point to previously loaded waveforms & samples - when the loaded waveforms don’t occupy the first contiguous slots on the board.

And thanks to this discussion, I’ll take what I thought a suggestion as necessity:

meatballfulton - 10 November 2016 04:18 AM

Saving the All files is the only way to get a copy of the adjusted pointers.

Thank you, all.

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