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Sample support in Equator

I'd like to start using my seaboard and equator for sound design, but would require the ability to custom import my own samples.

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Actually I found reviews indicating that it's possible to import SFZ sample packs into Equator, eg this one that is pretty current (Jan 2018): https://www.emusician.com/gear/review-roli-equator.
Via a reddit page I even found an Equator manual with an appendix that explains the procedure of creating and importing such an SFZ  file. Weird enough, the original reddit link to that manual is dead, but an alternative link was posted:
http://questmktg.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Equator-Creator-Manual-Release-v1.7.2-Rev-C.pdf
The appendix is (no surprise) at the very bottom of the document.

Seems like Roli pulled this feature for whatever reason, which is sad, but here is hoping that it will be re-added.
My attempts to import an SFZ anyway failed so far.

 


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Hi there Frank,


Thanks for bringing that up! Indeed, while technically it is possible for creators to import samples into Equator (and the directions for doing so in the version of the manual you linked to are still valid), this process requires quite a bit of technical know-how and is not particularly creator-friendly. If you're feeling intrepid, please feel free to go through the process described in the manual appendix to import your own samples. (Note that we aren't able to provide support on it.)


We do want to make this more creator-friendly in the future, though, so please feel free to share this feature request if you'd like to see more votes for it!


I hope this helps, and please let me know if you have any questions.


Red


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The ability to easily load my wav files into Equator would be incredibly useful.  I am touring with my ROLI and having to trigger samples from ProTools or an iPad app which could easily be played by the ROLI.  I've had no luck getting the SFZ method to work.  PLEASE make this a priority!

 


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This could make Equator reach a whole new level, even if it doesn’t become a full-featured sampler.


Great minds think alike! ;-)

(The forum software didn’t catch the fact that we were making the same request. Guess we can’t rely on this to avoid duplicates.)




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I'm glad to hear that this is useful, and we do want to make sample import in Equator easier to do. 


We certainly want to continue strengthening community engagement. In addition to this forum we just introduced the "Share your ROLI setups" forum, and we'll add more forums over the comings days.


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I'd like to thank Frank for providing a link to the instructions for adding one's own samples using the SFZ method. After reading this comments here, I just initially tried this with a single sample and very quickly and easily got it to work properly!  It sounds fantastic. The next step for me is to create more complex sample "packs" so I can get more out of Equator.  But... I'm kind of miffed that ROLI has withheld those simple instructions for "creators" like me who have paid a whole lot of money for ROLI products, and that I had to find out about this from 3rd parties!


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I just finished creating more SFZ files with more complex multi-samples. Very quick and easy. Everything worked first try! I created some nice expressive patches within Equator using my custom samples, including samples from a Prophet T8 that I used to own (using oscillator sync, a feature which is conspicuously missing in Equator), as well as some interesting sounds from acoustic sources. I wish I'd have known about this possibility a year or two ago! The instructions are clear and easy to understand,  so I don't really understand why so many others were having problems with this.

 


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Announcing sucess :)

I managed to import some instruments from the free Sonatina Symphonic Orchestra library into Equator. Those are quite simple but very nice sounding. Just a few samples each instrument, spread across the keys, no velocity layers, no round robin in those I tried so far. It went pretty smooth, but I had to edit the sfz files, insofar as they use note names, not note numbers as described in the instructions. As soon as I had that changed (eg 36 instead of c2) and restarted Equator they worked fine.

The library does use a subfolder hierarchy for the sample files, the samples are adressed as for example:
sample=Samples\Celli\celli-sus-c2.wav

 

Mind that the directory called "Samples" in that line is not the same as Equator's "Samples" directory! It is at the same level as the sfz file adressing it, together with the other sfz's of that library.  It contains all samples of the library within subdirectories (such as "Celli", "Trombones", etc).
The structure is:
Documents/ROLI/Equator/Samples/Sonatina (this is where all the sonatina sfz's are)/Samples/Celli/

That part seems to be working nice and smooth.
Good times :D Thanks a lot for encouraging people to try, Steffen!

Now I need some application to comfortably find good loop points and embed them in the wav files, I can't find my old Sound Forge I used back in the days anywhere on my backup discs (and don't know whether it would even install on win 10).

 


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My reply never turned up here - maybe because I attached a file or it didn't like the tags. Anyway, my SFZ file is really basic:


<region> sample=G2.wav pitch_keycenter=43 lokey=0 hikey=43

<region> sample=G#2.wav key=44

<region> sample=A2.wav key=45

... the rest of the samples

<region> sample=E5.wav key=76

<region> sample=F5.wav pitch_keycenter=77 lokey=77 hikey=127


Everything in the same directory


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Yes, this does help. Without this comment, a cynic (i.e., a Redditor) would say that ROLI took away the feature to restrict what musicians, users, creators could do. Very nice to realize that there’s an internal roadmap for this.


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Very interesting! Much of the explanation is about creating the .sfz file, which presumably isn’t necessary when you already have SFZ soundfonts (say, from a sample library). Otherwise, the instructions make it sound like it’s just a matter of putting the soundfont folder in the right place (`Documents/ROLI/Equator for RISE/Samples`, which is visible, unlike library folders).

While it’d be nice to have an even easier method, this really doesn’t sound too difficult, assuming you do have soundfonts in SFZ format (same as Sforzando/ARIA).


Tried it with a couple of SFZ soundfonts lying around my computer and got the exclamation mark indicating a problem. But at least Equator does find these files. There’s an instance where it says it “downloads” those samples. This hasn’t worked either, but it’s also intriguing.


So there‘s hope!


By the way, Red, really nice job with this forum and with user “creator” feedback. Dunno if ROLI changed your role, recently, but you’ve been upping the company’s community engagement game over the past few days.


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Hey Steffen,


I'm glad to hear you were able to get this working! Initially these instructions were in the manual, although it turned out that creators were confused more often than they were empowered by them, hence their removal. In any case, we do want this process to be easier in the future, and have fun in the meantime!


Red


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This is biggest thing keeping me from using my Roli products on EVERY score and commercial piece that comes through my studio. You know I love you guys. I cannot say enough good things about the company and staff. All that said, a dedicated sampler, especially something similar to IRIS 2 would blow Roli up! To have the multi-control and custom sound manipulation with my Seaboard... this would be my go-to setup for scoring and high-end sound design. Keep us posted!! :)



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I’m not really good in programming, but I’m looking for to get a sitar sample into equator. I got NI India where a sitar sample is. Is anyone able to support me? Your effort would be rewarded. Cheers, Patrick

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It still works , at least on WIndows 10. Can't test the Mac version.


Check whether the SFZ files you test use note numbers (f.e.: 37) or note names (f.e.: c#2) to assign samples to keys. Equator fails miserably when attempting to load SFZ with note names, in a way that sounds much like the issues you describe.

It can be very tedious to translate all note names into numbers when the SFZ is dealing with lots of assignments, but it's currently the only workaround.


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