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Taking A Look At The Expression Crossfade Feature

Workshop Introduced - By Ken Belton

The workshop pages will be open and ongoing.  Content will be added or amended when new information is available, or contributed from members.

Latest Additions to this Workshop   'Lower Manuals and Pedals'   22/1/14

Basic Operation

The "Expression Crossfade" feature was first incorporated into the OAS system with Version 5. It is a very useful feature particularly when playing orchestral combinations or Jazz music. Regrettably, it is not available for the Pegasus Wing as yet.

The feature does not operate with the OX7 drawbars or the Wersi drawbars. Basically it is for use with the long wave sounds. However it can also be used with some imported Akai samples.

In its basic form, the 'Expression Crossfade' feature allows us to fade from a sound such as Piano on Upper Manual 'Level one', to a different sound such as strings on 'Level 2,3,or 4' by use of the Volume/Expression pedal.

In its extreme 'crossfade' position, the Piano would sound only when the Volume pedal was in the 'Back' position, and by pushing the Volume pedal 'Forward', the Piano fades out and only the String sound is heard.  This can be a very useful feature as it can be used on all Manual sound Levels.

If you look at the picture of the 'Selectors Advanced' page below and check the Expr.Pedal settings you will see that the standard factory setting is 100 This applies to all manuals and Pedals so please ignore the settings I have in the lower and Pedal sections for the moment.

You will note that Upper 2,3 & 4 are as the factory 'standard' setting 100 whereas Upper 1 is set to - 100 This is what I refer to as the 'extreme' Crossfade setting. Upper 1 sounds only when the Volume Pedal is in the back position.  Upper 2,3,& 4 sound when the Pedal is pushed forward

ECF1

Just to give an idea of how this feature sounds in its extreme position, here is a short Demo of my interpretation of the 'Cuckoo Waltz.  The Cuckoo 'calls' on the off position of the Volume pedal, Push it full on, the Cuckoo fades and the German Accordion sounds.

 Extreme Position Demo

Note: Any Demos I personally attach to this workshop will only consist of 'one preset' of which I hope will help to demonstrate the sound variations that can be achieved with this feature within just one preset on the 'Upper manual'. Later, I will incorporate it also into other manuals.

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How It Works in practice

In an attempt to explain how 'Expression Crossfade' works and can be used to good effect, I have made this line drawing of the possible parameter range of the Expr. Pedal settings (on the Selectors Advanced page) for the four Upper sound levels.  They were made for a preset that I use for some folk music. The graph shows the instruments selected, and the Expr. Pedal values they are set at. Also the individual instrument volume levels are shown which can be set at the same time (from the Selectors page).

ECF2

------ If instruments are set at the STD 100 value, sounds on the related levels operate normally. Louder when pushed forward, quieter in the back position

 

 

 

 

 ------- If instruments are set at the value 0 the related sound on the level will be constant between 100 and       -100 with no fade effect when the pedal is operated

 

 

 

 

--------  If instruments are set to the     -100 value,  the related sound on the level  fades in on the back pedal position, and  fades out when pushed forward.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                         Harmonica      Strat Guitar -1     Vocal 1    Atlantis Organ

 ECF Value     - 98                70               100               40

Volume Lev.     85                90                70              105       (Approx,  Adjust to suit your preference)

 

Lets then explain how the sounds and Exp. Crossfade values for this preset operate.

Upper 1 Is a Harmonica that is used for counter melody or fill ins. Its Exp.Crossfade value is 98 and sounds only when the pedal is in the back position.

Upper 2  Is Strat Guitar -1 which is the lead instrument.  Its Exp.Crossfade value is 60. This sounds from about the middle to full pedal position.

Upper 3  Is Vocal 1. It is turned off, and only sounds when WersiChord is triggered with the right hand foot switch.  It is set at the STD 100 position, so sounds soft and loud when the pedal is operated as normal.

Upper 4  Is the Atlantis Organ. Its Exp.Crossfade value is set at 40.  This provides a backing sound for all the other instruments. It is almost a constant sound except that the value 40 makes it slightly softer for the Harmonica sound in the pedals back position. Push the pedal forward and the sound increases slightly.           (if you do not have the Atlantis sound, use another organ preset sound that is not to dominant) 

 Preset Demo  (Played on Upper Manual only)

It is appreciated by myself that many would not like the way this preset works.  As an instance, most would use the lower manual to play the Harmonica sections, but using it on the upper manual with 'crossfade' is just a way that suits me personally.

It is also appreciated that if you use the Volume Pedal to play in the conventional 'Organ Style' ie. Pedal in back position, no sound, pushed forward full volume, to have sound when the pedal is in the back position may seem to be a little 'alien'.

However, as we are aware, the Wersi instrument is more than just an organ, it is a full orchestra, and when used with the 'Exp. Crossfade' feature, it can transform your orchestral and Big band combinations from playing just a solo instrument through to the full orchestra on one preset without necessarily having to touch a switch, as it is all controlled by the Exp. Pedal.

 

Latest Update 22/1/13

Making Adjustments to the Lower Manuals And Pedals when using Expression Crossfade    

So far we have only dealt with using this feature on the Upper Manuals, and if you have tried the settings above you are probably questioning the lack of volume from the Lower Manual and Pedals. So lets now put it altogether so it operates correctly on all manuals and Pedals.

If you are a 'Style Player' (using the auto ACC) such as myself, it is only really necessary to make adjustments to the Lower Manual Exp. Pedal Values, so as the volume is not totally lost when the Volume Pedal is in the back position.  However, as most use pedals as well, adjustments need to be made to the Foot Pedal Exp. Pedal Values also so the Pedal volume is not completely lost when the volume pedal in the back position.

Setting the Pedal and Lower Manual values to approx. 40 or 50 as shown below, allows them to sound when the Volume Pedal is in the back position, with an increase in volume when the pedal is pushed forward.  It is of course then necessary to adjusted the volume levels for the sounds as desired. 

 

ECF2

 

 

The preset I have used in this example uses a 'Big band' Style and the selector screen below shows the Volumes and Panorama settings that I have used in conjunction with the Expression Crossfade values.

Note: The Volume level of 64 for Ped. 1 is the volume level set for use with the Foot Pedals.  When Auto Bass is used in the accompaniment, the bass value is usually higher. Exp.Crossfade can be used with the Pedals also but I have no experience on using the feature on the pedals.  However, if any member has used it on Pedals to good effect then please feel free to add your experiences to this workshop.

 

ECF3

 

 

Downloadable Preset

The screens below shows the instruments used for a downloadable demo preset of 'Big Band Crossfade' that you may wish to try.  It is of no particular 'Big Band' or song, just a selection of different instruments applied to all the manual levels to demonstrate the possibilities of the crossfade effect.  I personally like to play crossfade presets without making any changes to the manual switches apart from triggering WersiChord when needed leaving all the variations to the Expression Pedal.  However with this particular preset I do turn off the Upper 2 sound 'Jazz Trombone' at points when I like to include the familiar 'Miller Sound'.

 ECF4

Some other settings on the Selectors Page 1

You will note that the 'reset Controllers' box is unchecked, this prevents any changes to the octaves from being reset to standard when loading or changing the sounds.  Also the Lower 'Split Point' is set to G2. This is just my own preferred position for playing. If you play in the more conventional organ style you may need to alter the split point to suit. Also, the sound on the Lower one manual will need lowering by 1 octave.

ECF4

 

Preset Demo Download

How each manual is set to work.

Upper 1  'Clarinet Swing' sounds in the Exp, Pedals back position and fades when pushed forward. Used as a solo instrument.

Upper 2  'Jazz Trombone' fades in about the half way position and becomes a lead instrument. (turned off when the 'Miller Sound' is required)

Upper 3  'Alto Sax MF' fades in at the full on position and is enhanced with Wersichord BB Reeds when required for the 'Miller sound'.

Upper 4  'Big Band Brass Soft' also sounds at the pedals full on position which is more prominent when the Wersichord is not in use on the Upper 3 manual.

Lower Manual

As you will be aware, the lower manual can be used in two variations when it is split, ie. 1 2 + 3  or 1 + 2 3 In the case of the preset used the 1 + 2 3 variation is used.

Lower 1  'BigBand Brass Soft' is used as a single sound for playing the chords etc.

Lower 2  'Sax Section 2' can sound as a solo instrument with the Exp. Pedal in the back position but also intermingles with the Lower 3 sound when pushed forward.

Lower 3  'BigBand Brass Soft' crossfades over the Miller sax which can still be heard.

 

Expression Crossfade can also be used with the 1 2 +3 variation to good effect although I have not used it myself. So again, if any member has used it to good effect, please join in with the workshop.

This of course applies to anyone that uses the feature and would like to add content or comments from your own experiences and uses of the feature, please send in, we would like to hear from you.

Ken

 

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