I have been wanting to program velocity layers and round robins together in Decent Sampler for a while so I took the opportunity to practice with a small Lap Harp labelled Cymbalon on the box. It is a trapezoid shaped sound box with a circular sound hole in the center and has 15 strings. Quite commonly available on your favourite auction site. I chose a string close to ‘C’ and tuned it before sampling with a Tascam DR-40x in XY mode.
I have set the usable range from C0 to C6. It could be probably stretched a little further down but within these six octaves the best sound is to be had. Feel free to extend it if you know how to edit the .dspreset file.
The instrument was sampled in my bathroom (quietest room in the house!) with a portable vocal booth surrounding it. The recording was carried out with a Tascam DR-40x with the Mics in standard XY position and supported on a small tripod. The strings were plucked with a Herdim plectrum.
Reviews for Cymbalon
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Well featured and delghtful
This appears to be based in the same instrument as the recent Gusti Perepylolochka by Illian Ladov?
This version has a more extended range (ie outside the "natural" range of the instrument) but still sounds natural and very pleasantly musical. It is well sampled and the GUI is very straightforward yet versatile (eg extending attack times gives a subtle pad effect.)
One fairly trivial observation. Not that you would want to do it I guess but the two instruments do not play well together (to my ears at least). The tunings are slightly different (apart from the unimportant fact that octaves are mapped differently). Illian's version seems to be ever so slightly sharp in places compared to standard tuning. This version seems to fluctuate a little less (but I haven't tested every note.) In any case I reckon this is not an error since the instrument is naturally subject to quite obvious vibrato - in fact, it's part of its particular charm I think so pitch drift is inevitable.
So if I am right we now have two excellent choices for this distinctive and atmospheric instrument.
Great work on this, It's a simple and clean sounding string instrument. Fun to play with and sounds pretty good!
Interesting Plucked Stringed Instrument
Slowing the attack gives it even more character. Something like a bowed instrument.
I appreciate the Round Robins and Velocity Layers. These things really increase the usefulness of a patch.