So how do I use this groovy new feature?
Multiple articulation banks are turned off by default, so the first thing you'll want to do is head over to the settings panel in Articulate 1.05 and switch it on. It's right down in the bottom-right of the options panel. Give it a click!
Once you've flipped that switch head back to the articulation configuration panel. You'll now see four little 'nubs' to the left of the articulation icons - one nub for each available bank of goodies. Move your mouse over the Articulate window and give your mouse wheel a little scroll. You'll notice the nubs change as you scroll up or down, and (if you had any articulations defined) you'd see the grid of icons changing depending on which bank you're on:.
Programming each articulation is done exactly the same way as before - click the icon to see its properties and edit below. The only difference is that you can now scroll between four different selections of articulations.
So how do I use these articulations if there are only 16 colours!?
With the Multiple artic. banks option turned on, each note you draw now has a new property called Articulation Bank. To access this property you'll want to click the Control menu in the bottom-left of the piano roll (make sure the note velocity panel is visible) and select Articulation Bank from the pop-up menu (see below):
You'll notice in the first picture, the notes default to being dead-in-the-center. If you leave the Articulation Bank property like this each note colour will access the last selected bank of sixteen articulations. This defaults to bank 1, but changes once a note specifically picks a bank! To prevent the wrong articulations from possibly being played, we'll want to assign a note to a specific bank!
To assign a note to a bank (bank 1 - articulations 1 to 16, bank 2 - articulations 17 to 32, bank 3 - articulations 33 to 48 and bank 4, articulations 49 to 64) we'll be changing this property. It's simple - here's how it works:
In the picture you can see four notes that are an identical-colour-green. However, you'll also have spotted that each note has a different 'Articulation Bank' property in the automation track below. There are four articulatation banks, so we split the track into four separate areas. To select which bank a note belongs to simply draw its pip into the quadrant associated with the bank you want.
In the example above, even though the four notes are identically coloured, from left-to-right, they switch to articulations
1 (colour 1, bank 1 ),
17 (colour 1, bank 2 ),
33 (colour 1, bank 3 ) and
49 (colour 1, bank 4 ). It's this combination of note-colour and Articulation Bank that gives you access to 64 articulations.
This could get confusing! Is there anything that can help me track the articulation a note belongs to?!
It can get a little hard to track sometimes. I'd recommend organising your articulations with shared-colours in mind. Also, It's worth noting that when you click a note, the FL Piano Roll colour picker will update to show all articulations in the note's current bank:
so you're not completely alone. It's definitely not the best solution (that's why it's not turned on by default), but it's the only one until Image-Line can implement more colours into the piano roll. I'm releasing it as an option in this latest update to Articulate to give power users something a little more expansive when it comes to managing and selecting their articulations. If you don't think it's for you, or you're confused - don't panic - just never switch this option on and you'll not even know it's there!
To wrap things up
To sum it up, Multiple articulation banks allow you to access up to 64 articulations per BRSO Articulate channel in FL Studio. This can be combined with systems such as Spitfire Audio's UACC to control whole instruments now with relative ease! What's your thoughts on the system? Leave your feedback in the comments below, drop me an email or ping me a twitter @syntheticorch with your thoughts and ideas!