Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5

Hi all
New Take 5 owner as 2 days ago - also new to Sequential. I have Novation Peak and Novation SL MK3 also in my setup.
I'm using Ableton Live 11 on Windows 10 and would just like to find my favorite presets and create some favorite banks of my own and then start creating music, but the potential automation ease with PlugSE is also appealing.
Ideally I would also overwrite the factory preset banks with something I need, but that looks to be a little more challenging although there seems to be somebody who know how :-)
I'm in dialog with Mark from SoundTower troubleshooting why the Demo is not connecting correctly, hopefully this will be solved.
Any suggestion or recommendations from you experienced nice people in here, if you also note that I don't want to get to much into the deep technical solutions even though I work with IT :-) I rather make music...

Thanks in advance
Jens from Denmark

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2022, 01:15:14 PM »
Just discovered that with the SoundTower Take5 Sound Editor, you can freely use all 256 preset slots - reuse some of the factory presets or completely overwrite all of them with your own or ones you purchased.
Also SoundTower support (Mark) is in super helpful and friendly - fast to respond as well :-)

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2022, 09:57:37 AM »
I also bought the TAKE 5 editor today to finally be able to arrange and sort my sounds decently.
But an additional highlight is actually that you can overwrite the factory programs! Now we have 256 memory locations for user sounds!
I have also played around with the "Program Genetics", it's definitely a good source and inspiration for new sounds.

I also noticed a bug, let's see if Soundtower has a solution.

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2022, 07:03:19 AM »
One can also replace/overwrite the factory bank with the user bank using the hidden debug menu in Take 5.

The problem is that the factory bank is quite good and I would prefer to keep it and have more patch storage space instead.

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2022, 11:38:21 AM »
Let's hope that Soundtower will also update the TAKE 5 Editor so that we have access to all of the 256 user and the 256 factory sound locations (obviously it doesn't work properly at the moment).

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2022, 12:18:38 PM »
It's actually been a huge pain thus far heh.

I was able to use the editor to swap some plugins around so I'd have patches I need right in order in Bank 1, but for some reason, it kept resetting my custom ones to whatever the factory preset it's based on was (and also wouldn't update any patch name changes when I SysEx dumped to it). Infuriatingly frustrating, but after I unplugged, then re-edited, I could use my custom presets for the gig.

I'm afraid to use USB MIDI anymore, only 5-pin MIDI out so that the editor doesn't screw up what's on my Take 5 again. Hopefully fixes are coming!

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2023, 04:08:13 PM »
It's actually been a huge pain thus far heh.

I was able to use the editor to swap some plugins around so I'd have patches I need right in order in Bank 1, but for some reason, it kept resetting my custom ones to whatever the factory preset it's based on was (and also wouldn't update any patch name changes when I SysEx dumped to it). Infuriatingly frustrating, but after I unplugged, then re-edited, I could use my custom presets for the gig.

I'm afraid to use USB MIDI anymore, only 5-pin MIDI out so that the editor doesn't screw up what's on my Take 5 again. Hopefully fixes are coming!

Were your issues ever resolved?

I'm considering picking up the PlugSE version so I can see all my current settings for a given patch at a glance, but am thinking perhaps I should wait until sometime after the firmware update is officially released.

Also, does the PlugSE include the sequencer editor? It's unclear to me how the standalone and plugin versions differentiate, but despite the website's lack of clarity I'm guessing the plugin is missing the generative patch and sequencer editor features since they're not mentioned in the manual?

I don't really get why so much emphasis is placed on using the plugin for automation -- are there things that the plugin can make available for automation that can't already be done natively in your DAW, or is it just the facility of being able to see the patch settings at a glance while automating?

It's also weird that the manual uses screen grabs from other synths, and that some pages on the website have the wrong synth name in their title -- I mean I understand it's all got to be a lot of work maintaining documentation when you could be working on software features/fixes but a demonstrated attention to detail is a quality I look for in my tools.

Cobblers kids always need new shoes and small operations, yada yada, I get it, but gotta say my comfort level is not super-high and has def kept me from pulling the trigger.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2023, 04:20:21 PM by lewisfrancis »

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2023, 03:11:00 PM »
I don't really get why so much emphasis is placed on using the plugin for automation -- are there things that the plugin can make available for automation that can't already be done natively in your DAW, or is it just the facility of being able to see the patch settings at a glance while automating?

Watched a video on the Rev 2 product and see that automation written using the plugin version provides human-readable names of the adjusted parameters, which def has value, as does watching the virtual synth interface change in real time as automation runs.

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2023, 05:44:18 PM »
Is anyone using the Plug SE in Logic?

Finally got around to trying the demo and it's acting oddly -- I can turn any knob on the synth and see its equivalent change in the plugin, but when I tweak a given knob in the plugin, the change is not reflected in the synth except for a few controls. Is this a limitation of demo mode?

I tried to record some parameter changes in Logic and while the changes are captured, once I stop editing a given control, like say cutoff or resonance, additional data for that control is sent by the plugin to Logic -- is this another demo mode limitation -- a kind of data poisoning?

In the standalone editor changing the filter cutoff knob on the Take 5 looks janky/jerky/stuttery in the Editor equivalent knob animation, which is super-odd as control movement of any other knob is emulated smoothly, and it works fine in the plugin version. Į\_(ツ)_/Į

I can find no documentation on what might be disabled in the plugin demo mode, but in the standalone version when I turn a knob in the editor interface I can see a flash alert of "Demo Mode" in the app tab bar.

« Last Edit: February 10, 2023, 05:51:31 PM by lewisfrancis »

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2023, 12:53:56 PM »
I can find no documentation on what might be disabled in the plugin demo mode, but in the standalone version when I turn a knob in the editor interface I can see a flash alert of "Demo Mode" in the app tab bar.

Ugh, I am blind.


Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2023, 01:26:12 PM »
Got a quick response from SoundTower after emailing them this morning.

I tried to record some parameter changes in Logic and while the changes are captured, once I stop editing a given control, like say cutoff or resonance, additional data for that control is sent by the plugin to Logic -- is this another demo mode limitation -- a kind of data poisoning?

This appears to be a bug, awaiting further information from SoundTower.

In the standalone editor changing the filter cutoff knob on the Take 5 looks janky/jerky/stuttery in the Editor equivalent knob animation, which is super-odd as control movement of any other knob is emulated smoothly, and it works fine in the plugin version. Į\_(ツ)_/Į

This appears to be an optimization that is present in the PlugSE version but hasn't made it to the standalone editor yet.

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2023, 01:30:50 PM »
I can find no documentation on what might be disabled in the plugin demo mode, but in the standalone version when I turn a knob in the editor interface I can see a flash alert of "Demo Mode" in the app tab bar.

Ugh, I am blind.



The potentially confusing thing about this is that you can actually record changes in any of the buttons/knobs and they will be reflected in Logic and in the PlugSE during playback, but only the features listed in the screen grab will be "heard" by the Take 5.

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2023, 01:19:22 PM »

I tried to record some parameter changes in Logic and while the changes are captured, once I stop editing a given control, like say cutoff or resonance, additional data for that control is sent by the plugin to Logic -- is this another demo mode limitation -- a kind of data poisoning?

This appears to be a bug, awaiting further information from SoundTower.

Welp, maybe not a bug per se but perhaps a FOL/documentation oversight -- works as exected when the Take 5 has Local set to Off. Will pass this along to Mark and see what he has to say.

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2023, 11:05:34 PM »
It would also be nice if we could finally get an update from Sound Tower that takes into account the Take 5's new memory structure. Unfortunately, I can't do much with the software at the moment.

In addition, there are a few bugs in the program that I've been waiting half a year to fix.

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2023, 08:04:11 AM »
It would also be nice if we could finally get an update from Sound Tower that takes into account the Take 5's new memory structure. Unfortunately, I can't do much with the software at the moment.

In addition, there are a few bugs in the program that I've been waiting half a year to fix.

To be fair it likely makes sense to wait until the firmware update is officially released, but does the Phantom Banks feature utilize the new memory structure? It's not documented in the manual, but neither is the sequencer edit mode. Į\_(ツ)_/Į

What are the bugs you've noted still awaiting fixes, if you don't mind sharing?

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #15 on: March 12, 2023, 12:00:25 AM »
What are the bugs you've noted still awaiting fixes, if you don't mind sharing?

Sorry for answering only now. I just checked my "bug list":

- "Save all data as sysex file doesn't" work (loading a sysex file works)
- Renaming programs doesn't work properly, program behaves stangely and changes aren't stored in the synth
- Renaming by right clicking on the program in banks overview doesn't work
- Program often freezes
- Data exchange (e.g. receiving banks) stops short after having started ("data not received or received incomplete")

Iíve told these points to Mark in September and he wanted to look at themÖ

The program is a great tool and itís looking fine, but in the state it is now itís almost unusable (at least for me).

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #16 on: March 12, 2023, 10:13:13 AM »
What are the bugs you've noted still awaiting fixes, if you don't mind sharing?

Sorry for answering only now. I just checked my "bug list":

- "Save all data as sysex file doesn't" work (loading a sysex file works)
- Renaming programs doesn't work properly, program behaves stangely and changes aren't stored in the synth
- Renaming by right clicking on the program in banks overview doesn't work
- Program often freezes
- Data exchange (e.g. receiving banks) stops short after having started ("data not received or received incomplete")

Iíve told these points to Mark in September and he wanted to look at themÖ

The program is a great tool and itís looking fine, but in the state it is now itís almost unusable (at least for me).

Ugh. Thanks much for that -- are you using the Mac or Windows version?

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #17 on: March 12, 2023, 10:41:35 AM »
Ugh. Thanks much for that -- are you using the Mac or Windows version?

Iím using Windows 11.

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #18 on: March 12, 2023, 11:35:23 AM »
Ugh. Thanks much for that -- are you using the Mac or Windows version?

Iím using Windows 11.

Thanks again, and huh. My guess is that that's the primary platform of the developer and I might expect less problems there than on ported versions, but software is hard.

Do we have any Mac users here seeing the same (or different) bugs?

Re: Experience with SoundTower plugins (Sound Editor and PlugSE) for Take 5
« Reply #19 on: April 06, 2023, 11:17:30 PM »
Hi all,

I've just updated to the recent version 1.14 of the Editor (for the new OS 2.0) and checked "my old bugs" (see post above).
Fortunately it seems that several issues are solved but I still have the following problems. Perhaps someone of you can also check or confirm them:

- Renaming a program in the software still isn't stored/updated in the synth
- Renaming by right clicking on the program in the banks overview still doesn't work.

Thanks in advance!