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SEQUENTIAL/DSI => Prophet => Prophet 12 => Topic started by: WytchCrypt on December 17, 2015, 08:11:49 AM

Title: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: WytchCrypt on December 17, 2015, 08:11:49 AM
Hi all, I've had my P12 module about a week and am just getting to know it.  Yesterday I decided to try out the Soundtower PC editor which lead to a very concerning problem (which I was able to fix).  I was running the 1.3.0 release editor in demo mode connected to my P12 module running OS 1.2.26(beta).

I was testing the send and receive program features.  I sent the P1/U1 voice from the editor to the P12.  Next thing I knew, every single factory and user slot on the P12 was set to the "It's a Prophet!" voice and there was no output sound...ya, even all the factory presets!  I opened up midi-ox and reloaded my sysex of the default user banks.  No change.  Every voice still set to "It's a Prophet!" and no output.  I reloaded my 1.2.26 OS sysex and still no change...every voice the same name and no output.  Finally, I read the P12 manual and tried the "Reset Globals" command as it suggested and everything cleared up and is running fine.

I contacted Soundtower and they suggested I have an "OS leak" and should notify DSI that I have a defective unit.  I spent 14 years as a software engineer and in my experience an "OS leak" is what we used to call a "memory leak" and has nothing to do with hardware...it's strictly a software issue (which in this case is supported by the fact that the "Reset Globals" command got me back to full functionality). 

Was this a software issue in the editor or in the 1.2.26(beta)?  Could it have been that the editor 1.3.0 does not support the upcoming P12 1.3 release (though the editor 1.3.1 does)? 

Anyone ever see this before or have any ideas on why this occurred?

Thanks!
Dennis
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: BobTheDog on December 17, 2015, 08:18:13 AM
If I was going to blame anything it would be the rather buggy Soundtower editor! OS Leak sounds like a load of bullshit to me.

After putting the beta version on originally did you do a reset globals?
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: WytchCrypt on December 17, 2015, 11:05:09 AM
If I was going to blame anything it would be the rather buggy Soundtower editor! OS Leak sounds like a load of bullshit to me.

After putting the beta version on originally did you do a reset globals?

I suspected the same thing but since I'm a P12 noob I wanted to hear from at least one long time P12 user who knew about the editor before I called "BS"  ;) 

1st thing I did after receiving my P12 last week was use Midi-Ox to sysex transfer user banks for storage and load up the 1.2.26 OS and I never had a problem with an "OS leak" or corruption of any voices.  And as I mentioned, back when I was writing code every bug related memory leak I encountered - though quite rare in occurrence - was always due to software not hardware.  It's a shame because I really liked the mix/morph/mutate/random voice creation feature of the editor and was ready to pull the trigger, but after this there's no way I'm buying this software and risking messing up my P12 to the point I have to ship it back to DSI for repair...just not worth it.

To answer your question, I'm sure I did a global reset after loading 1.2.26, probably a few - though never because the OS update messed up the voice banks/programs like my experience with the editor did  ;)
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: dslsynth on December 17, 2015, 11:26:28 AM
I really liked the mix/morph/mutate/random voice creation feature of the editor

Other existing and future editors can or will be able to do that so not to worry. Oh and consider reading up on research by Palle Dahlstedt into such techniques. Its not terrible duffycoat to implement!
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: WytchCrypt on December 17, 2015, 11:37:38 AM
I really liked the mix/morph/mutate/random voice creation feature of the editor

Other existing and future editors can or will be able to do that so not to worry. Oh and consider reading up on research by Palle Dahlstedt into such techniques. Its not terrible duffycoat to implement!

Great!  I had a Yamaha SY22 Vector synth (which according to the book, "Vintage Synthesizers", was directly based on Dave's Prophet VS) and it had this great feature called "random".  You could choose to either randomly select the 4 waves which populated the voice or the x-y axis volume mix movement between them that made the vector synthesis sounds evolve over time...fantastic feature!

I've already written a simple program to randomly select specific parameters on the P12 and print them out.  Problem is, it's obviously stand alone and not integrated into any editor so I have to manually set the values by hand.  Since you mention other existing options, are there other editors for the P12 besides the Soundtower that I'm not aware of?  Anything new coming that's worth knowing about?

Thanks  ;)
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: dslsynth on December 17, 2015, 12:08:56 PM
Since you mention other existing options, are there other editors for the P12 besides the Soundtower that I'm not aware of?  Anything new coming that's worth knowing about?

Well there is the iPad app Patchmorpher (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/patch-morpher/id718129807?mt=8) which can do multi-dimensional patch interpolation. Not sure if its updated for the most recent P12 OS as the preset format changes have been made recently by DSI.

Not sure what features ctrlr (http://ctrlr.org/) offers but consider checking it out as its free and open source.

Oh and maybe other options may exist in the future. ;)
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: WytchCrypt on December 17, 2015, 01:12:45 PM
Well there is the iPad app Patchmorpher (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/patch-morpher/id718129807?mt=8) which can do multi-dimensional patch interpolation. Not sure if its updated for the most recent P12 OS as the preset format changes have been made recently by DSI.

Not sure what features ctrlr (http://ctrlr.org/) offers but consider checking it out as its free and open source.

Oh and maybe other options may exist in the future. ;)

 8) Thanks...
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: yewtreemagic on December 17, 2015, 01:34:41 PM
Hi Dennis,

Shame we're now running two forums - I've just replied to your post in the 'other' one, and since I see that others here have largely echoed my views in their replies I'll post again here.

First of all, this sounds most odd, and I hope you weren't wearing any expensive trousers at the time  ;)

I've not heard of anyone else suffering from something like this with the 1.2.26 beta version, but judging by my own experiences with the Soundtower P12 editor I suspect it could possibly be some error at their end, resulting in the P12 bank memory being overwritten in some strange way.

I remember from many years ago that the Korg M1 could be persuaded to make all sorts of weird noises (unintended by its developers) by totally randomising the patch parameters and then sending that randomised data to the M1 itself, so it worked in unexpected ways. Some sounds were even released like this in commercial banks (IIRC it was Valhala's International Gold, although after so many years I might be wrong on this). Interestingly, these patches didn't warp the sound in odd ways if you loaded them into Korg virtual M1 - it was only the hardware that freaked out when faced with weird parameter values.

Perhaps your experience was something along the same lines. I would try working on editing your P12 module using its on-board controls for a bit - I suspect you won't have any similar problems, and if so would hopefully rule out an 'O/S memory leak' and point elsewhere :-X

No doubt such things will be eradicated once we all finally get the official 1.3.0 O/S release 8)


Martin
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: yewtreemagic on December 17, 2015, 01:42:22 PM
Yes, I was correct about that Korg M1 Valhala sound bank - it was the Valhala International Gold Series B-101 Soundbank, whose patchhlist you can read here:

http://bobbyblues.recup.ch/korg_m1/soundbanks/Valhala_B-101.html

Programs 92 and 93 M1 ALIVE!1 and M1 ALIVE!2 were the ones I was thinking of.

I'm amazed by my own memory now - this was released in 1998!!!! :-[


Martin
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: WytchCrypt on December 17, 2015, 04:10:45 PM
Hi Martin,

  sorry for the multiple posting in both forums, just wanted to make sure I reached as many P12 owners as possible :)

Anyway, yes I'm only editing directly from the P12 now and transferring programs/banks via Midi-Ox and have had no further issues.  After this misadventure I removed the Soundtower demo from my pc and have no intention of purchasing - and the trousers were completely ruined after seeing a completely silent "I'm a Prophet!" fill all 792 program slots  :o  In the midst of my panic, I knew what I was seeing was most likely impossible since the factory presets are probably hard wired in ROM or something and unchangeable, but the feeling of, "Oh No!  I broke my Prophet 12" was screaming in my ear loud and clear!  Either way, I'm definitely ready for the 1.3.0 release  8)

Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: BobTheDog on December 17, 2015, 11:57:22 PM
You can change the factory presets they are not hard wired. The sound tower editor can also change them.
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: Razmo on December 18, 2015, 02:17:05 AM
I think the problem lies with the editor... The latest OS had a change to a versioning byte in the sysex structure, that Will screw up the mod destinations because the indexes has changed... If the editor does not tale This into account, or is not updated for the last versioning nummer, that could be the cause og it going nuts.

It could be something else, but i just thought i would mention it.

The reason the Factory presets got wiped is simply that Any sysex Write to Them Will overerite Them, but you cannot overerite these from the p12 itself... DSI agreed to let ud overwrite the Factory presets This way, after many og ud requested This feature on the other forum.

My own editor for the old sounddiver program Works fine with my p12, and have never experienced what you have, so i am pretty certain that it's the ST editor that is screwing up.
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: WytchCrypt on December 18, 2015, 08:37:10 AM
You can change the factory presets they are not hard wired. The sound tower editor can also change them.

Didn't know that.  Even so, that doesn't explain why after reloading the user banks via Midi-Ox sysex they all remained set to the "It's a Prophet!" voice (and the same after reloading OS 1.2.26)  ???
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: WytchCrypt on December 18, 2015, 08:40:35 AM
I think the problem lies with the editor... The latest OS had a change to a versioning byte in the sysex structure, that Will screw up the mod destinations because the indexes has changed... If the editor does not tale This into account, or is not updated for the last versioning nummer, that could be the cause og it going nuts.

It could be something else, but i just thought i would mention it.

The reason the Factory presets got wiped is simply that Any sysex Write to Them Will overerite Them, but you cannot overerite these from the p12 itself... DSI agreed to let ud overwrite the Factory presets This way, after many og ud requested This feature on the other forum.

My own editor for the old sounddiver program Works fine with my p12, and have never experienced what you have, so i am pretty certain that it's the ST editor that is screwing up.

Interesting...again, had no idea an overwrite of the factory presets was expected behaviour from the editor.  I do agree though that the newest P12 OS and the demo version of the editor OS are not on the same page which could be the cause of my problem  ;)
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: Razmo on December 18, 2015, 09:14:06 AM
Sorry for my mobile's terrible spelling by the way... It thinks i am writing in Danish  ;)
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: yewtreemagic on December 18, 2015, 09:50:52 AM
I've battled on with the Soundtower P12 Editor on quite a few sessions, but get nowhere with it - it claims to be 'ON LINE' and you can send your P12 individual programs from the editor, but I've never been able to work out how to try out edits from my PC, or (probably the most interesting part) auditioning the Program Genetics or Morpher sections.

It doesn't help that the claimed PDF manual isn't included with the demo, so it's really difficult to work out what's going on, and I also seem to remember someone else claiming that some parts of the editor don't function in the demo version. Certainly a message 'Demo - sysex sending disabled' pops up if you attempt to download an entire bank to your P12 (which is fair enough), but I for one am not prepared to pay for a license based on what I've managed to get working thus far.

I've just spent the last half hour trying again, and have met a brick wall - it's one of the most impenetrable applications I've ever used ::)

And to put that into perspective, in the past I've written various computer games from scratch in assembly language, and reviewed software for a music tech magazine for the last 20 years!  :P

Martin
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: dslsynth on December 18, 2015, 10:56:42 AM
Just a general advice, yewtreemagic: find another tool or write your own! ;)

Soundtower editors look great and have interesting features. Unfortunately there are often problems with them and it doesn't help that DSI have made not very well announced changes to their preset formats.

As for the P12 preset format I am working on a documentation generation tool that can improve on that situation. But it does require DSI to use the gawk heavy Unix shell script that I wrote and of cause commit to make precise documentation of their modern instruments (p12 and on) where there are an obvious need for improvement. So far I have been given access to most of the information that I need in a very friendly way. But there are still some way to go before the documents can be published.

Right now there is around one month until gearmas (aka Winter NAMM) so DSI have their hands full and minds busy. Not to mention that for most of us shopmas is at its peak and eatmas preparations are starting to take time.

So calm down, learn to use your instrument, be sure to use the one of the officially recommended sysex tools to make regular backups of your presets and start to plan how you want to use your instrument in the future. Things could possibly improve a bit in the new year if you look in other directions than soundtower.

Good luck with it!
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: Razmo on December 18, 2015, 12:54:34 PM
Honestly... this has been said countless times before, but:

DSI should be developing their own editors! ... period! ... MOOG can do it, so can DSI... Dave just have to search a little deeper in his pockets to hire another developer... it would definitely be about time...

Let's just say that I'm happy that DSI synths up until now (exept Tempest) have been VERY easy to make editors for in the old SoundDiver program from Emagic, so I personaly don't really care, but... anyway... I think DSI should start thinking more about this, instead of letting the fate of functioning editors be up to third party developers... sure it's cheaper, but there must be a limit to this...
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: dslsynth on December 18, 2015, 01:48:24 PM
Yet another case of Press Play Syndrome (TM), hehe! . o O ( :o )

First things first: precise, easy to make sysex documentation with all details documented and zero errors. That in itself would be a huge step forward compared to the current situation for Prophet 12 and on.

Next are better editors. Surely it would be great if DSI offered that for all customers especially given the challenges of current soundtower offers. But I think the core of the problem is that a high quality editor will cost much more than the market wants to pay.

Also some people use unsupported platforms and these users need sysex documentation to progress towards usable tools. A standard DSI supplied editor even if it was working perfectly would not solve all the problems.
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: WytchCrypt on December 18, 2015, 02:54:00 PM
I've battled on with the Soundtower P12 Editor on quite a few sessions, but get nowhere with it - it claims to be 'ON LINE' and you can send your P12 individual programs from the editor, but I've never been able to work out how to try out edits from my PC, or (probably the most interesting part) auditioning the Program Genetics or Morpher sections.

It doesn't help that the claimed PDF manual isn't included with the demo, so it's really difficult to work out what's going on, and I also seem to remember someone else claiming that some parts of the editor don't function in the demo version. Certainly a message 'Demo - sysex sending disabled' pops up if you attempt to download an entire bank to your P12 (which is fair enough), but I for one am not prepared to pay for a license based on what I've managed to get working thus far.

I've just spent the last half hour trying again, and have met a brick wall - it's one of the most impenetrable applications I've ever used ::)

And to put that into perspective, in the past I've written various computer games from scratch in assembly language, and reviewed software for a music tech magazine for the last 20 years!  :P

Martin

The Program Genetics screen functions (mix/morph/mutate/random) were the only reason I considered buying the editor and the Soundtower tech support guy told me the ability to audition (actually hear) the new patches created by those functions is disabled in the demo version.  There was no way I was buying this if I couldn't successfully try out the mix/morph/mutate/random functions even if I had to actually transmit a resulting patch to the P12 for audition...and as my original post stated, that transfer attempt met with disastrous results so I'm passing on the editor  :(
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: yewtreemagic on December 19, 2015, 04:36:40 AM


As for the P12 preset format I am working on a documentation generation tool that can improve on that situation. But it does require DSI to use the gawk heavy Unix shell script that I wrote and of cause commit to make precise documentation of their modern instruments (p12 and on) where there are an obvious need for improvement. So far I have been given access to most of the information that I need in a very friendly way. But there are still some way to go before the documents can be published.

Well I look forward to that - well done dslsynth!  8)

Quote
So calm down, learn to use your instrument, be sure to use the one of the officially recommended sysex tools to make regular backups of your presets and start to plan how you want to use your instrument in the future.

Oh, I've been doing that fine already for the last few months (the two DSI forums are a mine of useful information as well).

MIDIOX is also in daily use backing up my new presets as they are created ;)


Martin
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: yewtreemagic on December 19, 2015, 04:38:58 AM
The Program Genetics screen functions (mix/morph/mutate/random) were the only reason I considered buying the editor and the Soundtower tech support guy told me the ability to audition (actually hear) the new patches created by those functions is disabled in the demo version.  There was no way I was buying this if I couldn't successfully try out the mix/morph/mutate/random functions even if I had to actually transmit a resulting patch to the P12 for audition...and as my original post stated, that transfer attempt met with disastrous results so I'm passing on the editor  :(

Aha! Now that nugget of information has finally come to light I won't need to spend any longer with that editor - thanks for the heads up Dennis! :)


Martin
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: dslsynth on December 19, 2015, 05:33:35 AM
The Program Genetics screen functions (mix/morph/mutate/random) were the only reason I considered buying the editor

Though I am more of a tool person than music person I do have practical experience with such methods using another tool. Overall its fun to play with. The primary challenge is that the set of possible sounds from a synthesizer can best be described as islands of good sounds in an ocean of noise. So to get good results one need to have practical sound design experience too and simply use the random techniques as a search tool in said ocean of noise. Its definitely a good and cool tool to have at hand but it do usually not beat manual sound design skills on sound quality as one gains experience. Hope that make things more clear!

Well I look forward to that - well done dslsynth!  8)

Thanks! Just extended the tool this morning so that types like sources and destinations can be loaded too. Its petty handy. Still have to see if DSI wants to use it as they are the only ones with the required knowledge to make such documentation. And its not fully automatic so some elbow grease is required. That is usually a limiting factor! ;)
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: yewtreemagic on December 19, 2015, 07:56:32 AM
Since you mention other existing options, are there other editors for the P12 besides the Soundtower that I'm not aware of?  Anything new coming that's worth knowing about?

Well there is the iPad app Patchmorpher (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/patch-morpher/id718129807?mt=8) which can do multi-dimensional patch interpolation. Not sure if its updated for the most recent P12 OS as the preset format changes have been made recently by DSI.

Not sure what features ctrlr (http://ctrlr.org/) offers but consider checking it out as its free and open source.

Richard Meyer's excellent 'Patch Morpher' tool hasn't been updated since Feb 2014, so sadly it won't support the latest P12 O/S changes.

There's currently no Ctrlr panel for the P12, although there's a good one for the P8 that looks far more what I'd like to see for the P12, with far more simultaneous controls on view:

(http://ctrlr.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/POWER08-Screenshot-1.2-638x300.jpg)

http://ctrlr.org/power08-editor-for-dsi-prophet08/


Martin
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: dslsynth on December 19, 2015, 08:24:08 AM
Richard Meyer's excellent 'Patch Morpher' tool hasn't been updated since Feb 2014, so sadly it won't support the latest P12 O/S changes.

The one reason why I am doing that doc gen tool is that the sysex formats are not documented with enough detail and further more new mechanisms are added without telling about it. The sound format version feature was only revealed because one of the usual suspects asked the right questions while testing an OS update. We need to arrive at a state with complete documentation and timely announcement of new features. My hope is that making easier to make precise documentation in theory could improve on this situation.

While a sound format version may seem like a little thing to the developer of the instruments OS its actually a change with many implications for an editor as the programs are only converted once they are loaded from the preset storage. This means that an editor with full support for the instrument need to be able to handle and display multiple versions of programs all with the same sysex encoding and the same instrument identification. Not sure how many editors supports this.

Anyone working on framework based systems absolutely loves when such things happens! . o O ( >:( )

:o . o O ( repetitive rant apology )
Title: Re: Very Strange Problem...Anyone Else?
Post by: WytchCrypt on December 19, 2015, 09:49:39 AM
The Program Genetics screen functions (mix/morph/mutate/random) were the only reason I considered buying the editor and the Soundtower tech support guy told me the ability to audition (actually hear) the new patches created by those functions is disabled in the demo version.  There was no way I was buying this if I couldn't successfully try out the mix/morph/mutate/random functions even if I had to actually transmit a resulting patch to the P12 for audition...and as my original post stated, that transfer attempt met with disastrous results so I'm passing on the editor  :(

Aha! Now that nugget of information has finally come to light I won't need to spend any longer with that editor - thanks for the heads up Dennis! :)


Martin

Hey Martin, you're very welcome! 

1st I watched the youtube vid all about the editor and specifically the Program Genetics screen and they specifically said to click the "Auditions" box to have the P12 instantly play any of the "Children" created by mix/morph/mutate/random.  Did exactly that on the demo version...no sound.  Then after trying 5 "Children" patches, the Auditions box is disabled and you can't click it again (unless you quit & restart the editor).  When questioned, the Soundtower guy told me the audition feature is disabled in the demo but as long as I had a working midi interface connection that everything would work fine in the purchased version...Guess I just wasn't convinced  :o