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Steel Guitar Pro—List of Problem Areas For Yonac To Improve This Wonderful App

edited June 27 in General App Discussion

First of all, I just want to make it clear I love nearly all of the Yonac apps I have bought.

Please list all problem areas you’ve discovered after you’ve used the app so the developer can either collect and address or at least be aware of things users have discovered.

Let them know how you’ve used the app (standalone, Audio Unit, IAA) and on what kind of device.

My initial areas for improvement are:

(Using on an iPad Pro 2017 model, iOS 15.5)

  1. App fails to perform as an AU in saved and re-opened GarageBand tracks, even though it works great as a standalone. Will not play back recorded MIDI information. No sound.

  2. Also, as an AU in GarageBand the string layout collapses on itself and squishes all strings into a single thick line, making strumming impossible unless the full screen version is activated.

  3. The app needs the two-finger mute function included. (After testing, the 3-finger mute option works, but it is far more awkward trying to play that way.)

  4. This is just a general question… could a tool for copying over old presets from Steel Guitar 2 be made? If not, this is not a dealbreaker.

Thanks, @Jessie and the folks at Yonac.

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Comments

  • @NeuM said:
    1. App fails to perform as an AU in saved GarageBand tracks, even though it works great as a standalone. Will not play back recorded MIDI information. No sound.

    Does any other DAW have these issues? GB continues to be the most problematic (and yet wonderful with its own tools) DAW. I'd love to see Apple really commit to making an open DAW for IOS hardware. Maybe this is the year.

    My request would be to allow for 2 finger muting and not make finger muting dependent upon the "bar tilting" feature which uses 2 fingers and exposes the 3rd finger touch for muting. I find the bar tilting just makes me go out of tune for no musical benefit. People report the IAA version of the product had 2 finger muting as the default and they got good at using that gesture. I think this might be an easy option to enable via an update.

    Changing behavior in GB might be a lot more difficult to troubleshoot and fix. It appears they planned for MIDI record/playback in DAW's with their custom MIDI protocol implementation.
    In AUM, Steel Guitar Pro can be installed as an AU Instrument or as a MIDI FX (even tho' AUM still labels it as an AU Instrument). I wonder if this dual capability plays into the GB issues.

  • edited June 27

    @McD said:

    @NeuM said:
    1. App fails to perform as an AU in saved GarageBand tracks, even though it works great as a standalone. Will not play back recorded MIDI information. No sound.

    Does any other DAW have these issues? GB continues to be the most problematic (and yet wonderful with its own tools) DAW. I'd love to see Apple really commit to making an open DAW for IOS hardware. Maybe this is the year.

    My request would be to allow for 2 finger muting and not make finger muting dependent upon the "bar tilting" feature which uses 2 fingers and exposes the 3rd finger touch for muting. I find the bar tilting just makes me go out of tune for no musical benefit. People report the IAA version of the product had 2 finger muting as the default and they got good at using that gesture. I think this might be an easy option to enable via an update.

    Changing behavior in GB might be a lot more difficult to troubleshoot and fix. It appears they planned for MIDI record/playback in DAW's with their custom MIDI protocol implementation.
    In AUM, Steel Guitar Pro can be installed as an AU Instrument or as a MIDI FX (even tho' AUM still labels it as an AU Instrument). I wonder if this dual capability plays into the GB issues.

    The way it works on the prior version of Steel Guitar is 2-finger muting when the bar tilting feature is off, and 3rd-finger muting when the bar tilting is on. We have no option to mute in a natural (2-finger) way during a performance right now.

    My suspicion is they may not know how to implement it yet, because there are new presets which have muting automatically on. They never had that before. BUT if 2nd or 3rd finger muting cannot possibly be implemented in this MIDI controllable version of the app (and I refuse to believe that) then most of my performances and recording will have to be done with the prior version of the app as an IAA.

    Also, yes others have reported this same playback issue on other DAWs, I believe when there are multiple tracks using the app. See @Agatha_aga comment here: https://forum.audiob.us/discussion/comment/1092173#Comment_1092173

  • Im finding that it seems to makes my ipad (M1 pro) very hot. This is pretty unusual. Im using it in Cubasis.

  • edited June 27

    @hat_cake said:
    Im finding that it seems to makes my ipad (M1 pro) very hot. This is pretty unusual. Im using it in Cubasis.

    iPad Pro, M1 version… which version of the iPad? Air? Pro 12.9”? Fortunately, I’ve not seen that side effect yet.

  • The ipad pro M1 11". This is with a few instances running.. but even so, im kinda surprised! (sounds great though)

  • @hat_cake said:
    The ipad pro M1 11". This is with a few instances running.. but even so, im kinda surprised! (sounds great though)

    Good info. Thanks.

  • edited June 27

    The per string muting would definitely seem necessary to me, and limited though my slide skills are in real life, I often use a finger behind the slide to drop a string down a fret or two to make different intervals than chromatic fifths. I’m sure the technique has a name, and I’m not sure how you’d implement it alongside the muting but that’d be ace too if at all possible… I suppose if the muting were on the pickup side, the fret dropping could work at the same time?

  • edited June 27

    @Krupa said:
    The per string muting would definitely seem necessary to me, and limited though my slide skills are in real life, I often use a finger behind the slide to drop a string down a fret or two to make different intervals than chromatic fifths. I’m sure the technique has a name, and I’m not sure how you’d implement it alongside the muting but that’d be ace too if at all possible… I suppose if the muting were on the pickup side, the fret dropping could work at the same time?

    Under the “Slide Bar Vertical Control” setting in preferences, there are 3 options right now: “None”, “Volume” and “Pedals 1&2”. I think the “Pedals 1&2” option might do what you are describing. I only use the “Volume” setting. It seems the most natural to me. But not having 2-finger muting is still a major missing option in the app.

  • @NeuM said:

    @Krupa said:
    The per string muting would definitely seem necessary to me, and limited though my slide skills are in real life, I often use a finger behind the slide to drop a string down a fret or two to make different intervals than chromatic fifths. I’m sure the technique has a name, and I’m not sure how you’d implement it alongside the muting but that’d be ace too if at all possible… I suppose if the muting were on the pickup side, the fret dropping could work at the same time?

    Under the “Slide Bar Vertical Control” setting in preferences, there are 3 options right now: “None”, “Volume” and “Pedals 1&2”. I think the “Pedals 1&2” option might do what you are describing. I only use the “Volume” setting. It seems the most natural to me. But not having 2-finger muting is still a major missing option in the app.

    It’s kinda similar, less intuitive, but at least adds a bit of variety to the voicing. Maybe using a blue board with more options would get me more options as well…

  • edited June 28

    Wasn’t expecting but Steel GuitarPro became a breath of fresh air in my setup. It’s a great sounding virtual guitar. I have two issues with it though
    1. Problem with re-opening saved sessions in AUM. SGP instances become silent. This issue appears clearly if there are 2 or more instances in a session. I noticed that “Guitar volume” fader acts weird in those silent instances. It is set to 0 value and if I try to rise the fader it begins glitching.
    2. This one is a bit nit-picky but… it seems like visual effect of strings vibration (blur) become out of sync with actual sound if we close and reopen the AUv3 UI. What I mean, open AUv3 instance, strum the strings, close the UI window, wait until sound fades out, open the window, the strings visually still vibrate (in blur).
    My setup iPad 5 2017, iPadOS 15.3

  • @Agatha_aga said:
    Wasn’t expecting but Steel GuitarPro became a breath of fresh air in my setup. It’s a great sounding virtual guitar. I have two issues with it though
    1. Problem with re-opening saved sessions in AUM. SGP instances become silent. This issue appears clearly if there are 2 or more instances in a session. I noticed that “Guitar volume” fader acts weird in those silent instances. It is set to 0 value and if I try to rise the fader it begins glitching.
    2. This one is a bit nit-picky but… it seems like visual effect of strings vibration (blur) become out of sync with actual sound if we close and reopen the AUv3 UI. What I mean, open AUv3 instance, strum the strings, close the UI window, wait until sound fades out, open the window, the strings visually still vibrate (in blur).
    My setup iPad 5 2017, iPadOS 15.3

    Thanks for the detailed comments.

  • Not a problem but more an improvement suggestion :

    • the pedals are configured in a "relative" way (ex. pedal 1 = +2 semi-tones on string 1, -1 semi-tone on string 2, etc). I would like to be able to use an "absolute" way of configuration (ex. pedal 1 = C2 on string 1, E2 on string 2, etc). I know the big advantage of the relative way is that you can cumulate the pedals but it becomes frankly the mess when more than 2 or 3 pedals are activated
  • The AUv3 state saving issue persists in all hosts that I’ve tried and across all my devices. When reopening a session I get no sound from Steel Guitar until I open the app and select a preset.

  • @lukesleepwalker said:
    The AUv3 state saving issue persists in all hosts that I’ve tried and across all my devices. When reopening a session I get no sound from Steel Guitar until I open the app and select a preset.

    I think Yonac would’ve benefitted from some beta testing before releasing this one. And there are many here who are willing to do this kind of thing for free.

  • edited June 28

    @lukesleepwalker said:
    The AUv3 state saving issue persists in all hosts that I’ve tried and across all my devices. When reopening a session I get no sound from Steel Guitar until I open the app and select a preset.

    There is a bug when you select the option to keep the guitar when changing presets, the presets changes but with no sound until you change the guitar by hand

    may be related

  • Anyone else have big bug finds to report?

  • Sustain CC 64 disabled.

  • @Paulo164 said:
    Sustain CC 64 disabled.

    Interesting.

  • Hey, this is Jessie! The password reset wasn't working, hence the new account. We'll take a look at these things today.

  • Hey, welcome back then. And thank you so much for this new version !

    My observations :

    • sustain not operative, neither C64 in CC mapping (CC64 even seems to be prohibited)
    • I love the release samples when mute strings option is active -> these release samples seems to be simply ignored when playing with an external keyboard
    • Would be nice to be able to trigger string #1 on channel 1, string #2 on channel 2 etc. and this opposite way

    Thanks !

  • @yonac said:
    Hey, this is Jessie! The password reset wasn't working, hence the new account. We'll take a look at these things today.

    Thanks, Jessie. Just thought it would be helpful to organize feedback on needed fixes. Nice to see you’re back!

  • @Paulo164 said:
    Sustain CC 64 disabled.

    Yonac created a MIDI scheme so the app can be recorded and played back in DAW's.
    Sustain 64 is allowed but only expected on Channel 15. The individual strings output
    on channel 15 as well. So, set your external MIDI controller to input on Channel 15 and it should follow notes and Sustain CC 64. Of course, MIDI on channel 0 seems to be accepted too but the list of CC's are ignored on channel 0.

    There is a list of custom CC uses in the manual:

    MIDI Notes 0-11 on Channel 15
    Pitch Wheel Messages on Channels 4-9
    CC 0 is reserved for bank changes
    CC 32 is reserved for bank changes
    CC 64 on Channel 15
    CC 75 on Channels 4-9
    CC 76 on Channels 4-9
    CCs 102-108 on Channel 15
    CC 119 on Channel 15
    CC 120 on Channel 15

    The pitch wheel spread across 4-9 must be to convert the tilt angle of the bar when Advanced 2 finger titling is enabled. 75-76 too are spread across 4 channels. Watching the
    MIDI using a MIDI Monitor can help understand the protocol mechanisms.

    I've been working on a script to convert this custom MIDI output to make this app work as a custom MIDI controller for synths. It's fun to use the Slide interface on Zeeon, AudioLayer, World Synth, etc. Any app that support pitch bend adjustments to more than 2 semitones is a interesting target. Without wide pitch bend it's just a MIDI keyboard effectively which might be OK for adding synth PAD's, strings of choirs chords to the pedal steel chords.

    Just shifting Notes 0-11 to 60-71 gives you a chromatic scale but I'm creating tuning and scale mappings.

    I just need to re-scale the pitch bends to align with an octave at the 12th fret. Hopefully, I'll have something to try in a day or 2.

  • Fascinating work you’re doing, @McD!

  • @NeuM said:
    Fascinating work you’re doing, @McD!

    Yeah, clearly. Thank you !
    First I think I should start by reading the manual 😅

  • @Paulo164 said:
    First I think I should start by reading the manual 😅

    http://www.yonac.com/steelguitarpro/steelguitarpro_manual.html

  • FYI: Yonac has a forum for their community of users:

    http://www.yonac.com/forum.html#/discussions

    The only feature request I found there was for Steel Guitar Pro to output MPE.

    I wrote a request for the 2-finger mute and an update on my efforts to make the Mozaic script to hack the custom protocol. I'm not sure if it could be hacked for MPE or close to MPE. I think MPE expects pitch bends to be applied for individual channels so users can add vibratos per note. The bar doesn't really fit that mindset but aligning the MIDI channel output with the respective string might be a good MPE-like hack... but converging all MIDI on a single channel is also allowed using MIDI 1 standards and the target will apply pitch bends on all notes equally.

  • edited June 29

    @McD said:
    FYI: Yonac has a forum for their community of users:

    http://www.yonac.com/forum.html#/discussions

    The only feature request I found there was for Steel Guitar Pro to output MPE.

    I wrote a request for the 2-finger mute and an update on my efforts to make the Mozaic script to hack the custom protocol. I'm not sure if it could be hacked for MPE or close to MPE. I think MPE expects pitch bends to be applied for individual channels so users can add vibratos per note. The bar doesn't really fit that mindset but aligning the MIDI channel output with the respective string might be a good MPE-like hack... but converging all MIDI on a single channel is also allowed using MIDI 1 standards and the target will apply pitch bends on all notes equally.

    Fortunately, Jessie from Yonac (now using the @Yonac name here) responded and said they'd be looking at these issues.

    But your investigation into the limits available to the device as a MIDI control surface will also hopefully give them the idea that they could sell another version of this app which would act strictly as a MIDI/MPE controller app. GeoShred does this. There's no reason they couldn't do the same. And GeoShred has no strumming feature which comes close to that of Steel Guitar. In fact, if Steel Guitar started to compete more directly with GeoShred it might spur moForte to work on improving their own app so strumming could be possible.

  • @NeuM said:
    But your investigation into the limits available to the device as a MIDI control surface will also hopefully give them the idea that they could sell another version of this app which would act strictly as a MIDI/MPE controller app. GeoShred does this. There's no reason they couldn't do the same.

    Good point. I think they could sell a few copies of a variation app for that specific use case.
    Doing chords in Geo Shred is really tricky and then sliding that chord around? Not possible.
    I don't think per note portamento is possible either like the "pedal pitch bends" this app provides are possible either but I could be wrong. @Geotony might know. I wonder if he's looking into this app since he needs to use the screen due to pain in his hands.

  • Can Steel Guitar Pro be played with Geoshred or Velocity KeyBoard via midi routing in AUM? Does it provide a realistic pitch bend to perform long slides by using Geoshred?

  • @sujoybose77 said:
    Can Steel Guitar Pro be played with Geoshred or Velocity KeyBoard via midi routing in AUM? Does it provide a realistic pitch bend to perform long slides by using Geoshred?

    I think that's part of what McD is doing. He's working on creating scripts to allow the Steel Guitar app to control AND be controlled by other apps. (Hope I'm correctly stating the facts, McD)

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