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Help With Pitch Shifting

pitch shift vai the blood and tears

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#1 bigkid

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 04:56 PM

Hi all.

 

I'm serious noob when it comes to pitch-shifting but have decided to have a go at Steve Vai's The Blood and Tears, and a pitch shifter is fundamental to the sound.

I understand that Vai uses a Whammy on the '4th up/5th up' setting, which according to the manual bends the harmony between a fourth (toe up) and a fifth (toe down) above the input note. 

 

I have a POD HD Desktop connected to my computer and an FBV Shortboard MkII.  I can assign Pitch Glide to the pedal on the FBV using the HD Edit software but have no idea how to translate the Whammy setting described above to the effect settings.  Would appreciate any advice on the settings I would need to achieve this. 

 

Thanks for the help.

 

Regards,

 

Allan

 


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#2 BlueViolince

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 08:50 PM

The pitch glide works with semitones, which there are thirteen of in any given scale, from tonic to octave. In a major scale, a fourth would be +5, and a fifth would be +7 semitones, or something like that. Just count half steps from your original pitch to where you want the shift to hit. Don't take those numbers to the bank, since I don't know the key or scale of that particular song. The concept is there. So, for the given numbers, min setting might be +5, and max setting would be +7. Start there and play around until you get what you're looking for. Just remember, pitch glide is not intelligent, so it will only give the absolute interval, with no regard for the key or mode you're playing in. That's one reason I gave up on smart harmony pedals, since I shift in and out of modes so much without knowing what I'm doing, as far as theory is concerned.
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#3 bigkid

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 08:34 PM

Thanks for that BlueViolince. However, I don't seem to be able to set the max and min values for the expression pedal.  HD Edit only gives me the option to adjust a single Pitch parameter and the Mix, no Max or Min for Pitch.  Can't seem to figure out what I am doing wrong here. :(

 

Regards,

 

Allan


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#4 bigkid

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 08:50 PM

OK, I think I've got it. Had to fiddle with the controllers settings.

 

Thanks again BlueViolince.


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#5 BlueViolince

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Posted 17 August 2013 - 03:37 AM

No problem. I assumed the desktop software was similar to the 500, at least as far as parameters were concerned, but I didn't know for sure.
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#6 SiCantwell

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Posted 17 August 2013 - 08:28 AM

The pitch glide Exp. Pedal parameters are expressed in percentages instead of intervals, which I find very confusing. 50% is the current frequency or note. I'm not sure what 0 and 100 are, but they're either one octave or 2 octaves down or up. It took me trial and error to set the pitch glide to dive down a fifth (7 half-steps) for one patch.


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#7 BlueViolince

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Posted 17 August 2013 - 12:12 PM

It is? Huh, I guess I should have checked first. Probably an easy way is to set exp-1 to pitch, then make sure the percentage is visible on the screen, and jot down the number when you hit the desired interval, so you can set it as the min or max. I never understood why they would use such non-intuitive values for parameters.
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#8 Guitarmaniac64

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Posted 17 August 2013 - 11:06 PM

OK, I think I've got it. Had to fiddle with the controllers settings.

 

Thanks again BlueViolince.

 

 

How did you do it??

I have tried to do a patch for that song too but i failed..

Anyway are you gonna put the patch up on "custom tone" or maybe write all the settings here? 

In the song you hear the harmony in the background blended very nicely with the "dry" sound

When i tried tweak the patch i could not reproduce that sound the pitched sound was always way to obviouse compare to Vai:s recorded sound


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#9 bigkid

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Posted 17 August 2013 - 11:47 PM

Sorry Guitarmaniac64.  I'm not even close to the tone yet, I was just reporting success at adjusting the controllers, which was a major hassle. The HD Edit software uses percentages, as pointed out by SiCantwell.  I had to edit the settings on the Bean itself which uses a scale of -24 to +24, setting min and max values as suggested by BlueViolince (+5 and +7).  Quite a pain as I seemed to have some conflict with HD edit which insisted on over-writing my settings!  These settings seem in the ball-park but my control of the effect with the pedal is all over the place.  While I've been playing for years, I have never used a whammy and not sure what I am doing.  Worked on it for a couple of hours yesterday but tossed it in for the time being when I couldn't get close. 

 

Regards,

 

Allan


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#10 bigkid

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Posted 23 November 2014 - 08:43 PM

Hi all.

 

I am coming back to this tone after a long time out of action due to illness. Personally, I have still had no luck with getting the setting right  - anything I come up with just sounds plain insane! However I notice that someone has posted their attempt at the tone in the Custom Tone Library. I have downloaded it and a copy is here:

 

https://onedrive.liv...7DEBD1F39!38030

 

Unfortunately it is a .l6t file which I understand can only be opened by Gearbox. I have downloaded and installed Gearbox but it won't open the file unless you have a TonePort or a GuitarPort connected.  I don't have either. I use a POD HD500x nowadays.  It does not appear to be possible to convert the file to a file compatible with my POD. Is anyone aware of any way I can open this file without going to the expense of tracking down a used TonePort?  Alternatively, is there someone out there with one of the devices who would be kind enough open the file and post me some screen shots of the settings?  Would be happy to rename my first born after you, although I expect she won't be happy about it  ;-)

 

Thanks.

 

Allan


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#11 radatats

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Posted 23 November 2014 - 09:22 PM

Unfortunately it is a .l6t file which I understand can only be opened by Gearbox. I have downloaded and installed Gearbox but it won't open the file unless you have a TonePort or a GuitarPort connected. 

 

You need to uninstall Gearbox and the drivers completely.  Then reinstall Gearbox and make sure that you DESELECT everything except the application itself, no drivers or any other stuff.  When you open it now for the first time it will ask you if you want to act as if you have a product installed.  Click yes and don't show this next time.  Gearbox will work just fine without any hardware attached and you can open the l6t files to see how they are constructed.


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Quit complaining and DO something or help somebody with their issues...


#12 bigkid

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Posted 23 November 2014 - 09:52 PM

Thanks radatats. I'll give that a try.


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#13 bigkid

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Posted 23 November 2014 - 10:28 PM

Almost, but not quite. Apparently the designer of the tone had the Model Pack Add-ons, one of which was the 'Bender'. Critical for this particular tone. Gearbox won't show that effects settings unless you pay for the Model Pack. Grrr.

 

https://onedrive.liv...7DEBD1F39!38032

 

Bit of a shame as several years ago I had the Model Packs on another account, an account long gone.

 

Allan


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#14 BillBee

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Posted 24 November 2014 - 04:09 AM

Hey Allen,

 

Once purchased they are your model packs so if you can dig up an old email addy (from that account) L6 "might" be able to find the account for you. Unless you gave it to someone else.

 

-B


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Smell the glove.


#15 bigkid

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Posted 24 November 2014 - 10:37 PM

Hey BillBee.  No luck I'm afraid. The account and any reference to it is long gone.

 

Now, that said, I am having a little luck with this tone.  Went back to editing on the PODHD's screen rather than using HD Edit - which seems to be a bit glitchy when attempting to adjust for pitch harmonies other than 50% and 100% (whatever those might represent in intervals??). The POD display shows a +- 24 numeric range, 2 octaves down and two up.  With a bit of help from blueviolence's helpful post above, as the song is in A major, selecting 5.0 (a 4th) for toe up and 7.0 (a 5th) for toe down seems to get me in the right ball park.  A 50% mix seems about right. I have a copy of the tone here if anyone is remotely interested:

 

https://onedrive.liv...7DEBD1F39!38057

 

It is an early attempt and needs quite a bit more work. My guitar is quite warm so some might find this a little bright.

 

...... edit....... Here is another which, with my guitar, is warmer, with more delay, and is more useful as a lead tone when switching out the pitch glide:

 

https://onedrive.liv...7DEBD1F39!38058

 

Both of these may have too much distortion for some.

 

Regards,

 

Allan


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#16 BillBee

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Posted 25 November 2014 - 04:06 AM

Thanks for posting the tones Allen, I will try and give them a run this weekend - I've been trying to move into a Vai'ish style lately and have been working on a bit of pitch shifting integration. He and Satch make it seem alot easier than it is :)

 

Thanks Again!

Bill


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Smell the glove.


#17 radatats

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Posted 25 November 2014 - 04:33 AM

I've been trying to get the pitch shifter to work well but its not easy.  Still gets that tinny, thin sound no matter where I put it.  Trying to do something like Satch on Searching from Is There Love in Space.  Seems like it is even worse when I am running a JTV alt tuning through it as well.  Maybe two sets of modelling just won't work...  Then again, it might just be me... :huh:


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Quit complaining and DO something or help somebody with their issues...


#18 bigkid

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Posted 25 November 2014 - 11:55 AM

Hi Bill, radatats,

 

I think the secret to getting rid of the tinny sound is to drop the mix down to somewhere around 50%. At 100% it sounds plain horrible, but at 50% you get some of the aggressive, tubey amp sound coming through as well as the harmony.

 

One other thing, you might find the volume of the tones set a bit low and may need to ramp them up depending on your setup. And, again you might find them a bit bright and/or have too much distortion - but they are easy fixed.

 

Would love to hear how you go.

 

Allan


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#19 BillBee

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Posted 25 November 2014 - 12:03 PM

I'll try and give it a go this weekend - got practice tonight and the boys are not too pitch shifting friendly - I thought it would liven Tom Petty up a tad myself :)

 

Thanks for the tips!

-Bill


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Smell the glove.


#20 FlyingSquirrel

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Posted 26 November 2014 - 08:57 AM

If you are assigning more than one pitch assignment, and panning them to either extreme, I've found that it is better to just create a dual tone, and have each one independent of the other.  Just be mindful that the overall preset will be about +6db, so you can adjust it back in the mixer.

You can find an example of this on Custom Tone, look for my preset "Natl Anthem".  It's a Bogner Uber on each side, with a pitch shifter ala H3000 set for A Maj with a -3rd on one side, and +3rd on the other.  

I run all my presets in mono, so you'll have to manually pan Amp A to one side, and Amp B to the other in the mixer when you dial back the output by -6db.


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#21 FlyingSquirrel

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Posted 26 November 2014 - 09:00 AM

Additionally, each harmony is set to its own respective FS.

FS2 is one of them
FS3 is the other.

Preset is defaulted with them "off" so you can toggle them in independently of each other.

FS4 is a Solo Boost + Delay.

If memory serves, nothing is assigned to FS1, and the expression pedal is just a regular volume control until you toe switch the wah into use.

Here's that preset in use: http://line6.com/sup...spangled banner 


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#22 bigkid

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Posted 26 November 2014 - 06:21 PM

Thanks for the input FlyingSquirrel. Will take on board your advice and grab your tone. Nice playing by the way ;-)


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