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On the importance of Orbasynth for the Orba 2 and pitch-bending

At time of writing I am awaiting delivery of an Orba 2. In the meantime I have been learning whatever I can to help me get the best from it and these two things strike me as vital to turn what could be just a diverting musical toy to a real useable instrument.

As I understand it, pitch bending is possible, albeit it through manipulation of the vibrato settings. This I can live with because the potential of it is more valuable.

The subject of modal scales crops up in the forum a lot. It seems to me that a semitone pitch bend would make it possible to play in the most wanted modes using the diatonic scale but bending one or two notes with pitch bend. (Actually I think all modes would be possible, though difficult in practice.) Accidentals in a melody would also be available. It's not ideal, but it can work.

A whole tone pitch bend would allow a diatonic scale, including some modes, to be played with the pentatonic mode with the added bonus of a whole one and a half octave range without resorting to a disruptive octave change. To me this is a big gain.

(In fact full chromatics would also be possible in both cases but that's pushing it too far practically, I think.)

These would also add the possibilities of playing various cultural styles and greater expression - as in blues for the obvious example.

While all this may seem too difficult for players I think we should remember that music playing has always been about developing technique and practice. A range of different conventional instruments present such difficulties so we shouldn't shy away from it.

To access these benefits the Orbasynth application is necessary and a version that makes pitch bend a feature could do that.

Another element for me is that most electronic instruments these days, favour styles of music that hold little or no interest to me. I understand why, but it has been the reason I have found most current software and hardware useless - and so I wouldn't spend my money on them. However the Orba 2 seemed to have the possibilities that could make it of value to me, and more attractive to many others. The Orbasynth application is a big part of that - I could create presets that suit my own music, and perhaps those of others as well, because I'd be happy to share.

(I really appreciate and admire the effort of the hackers in the community but I'd rather stick to the "authorised" methods if I can.)

I would also mention that my decision to finally order an Orba 2 was based on those possibilities which I saw in Youtube videos. My point here is that the community has shown the potential of the Orba, helping the community, but (in my case at least) encouraging sales - helping Artiphon as well. Help us to do more.

So I would ask Artiphon to prioritise development of a version of the Orbasynth app for the Orba 2, helping yourselves and the community.

By the way, Happy New Year to you all!













1 person likes this idea

...yes, interesting possibilities. This is a chromatic scale on the Orba 1 played using a whole-tone scale with semitone pitchbend.

@BJG145 - as it happened I now have received my Orba 2 and had a quick try of  my idea with a pentatonic scale. It may take more practice than I thought, but it had already occurred to me that the right preset voice would make it work better -  this clip re-enforces that idea. But thanks for passing that on to me it's appreciated, as is the work you and others have done on what the beast can do.

But I've only had a little idling about with it rather than real effort on it so far.

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