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Bend Range Selection: Best Option?

I like to use MidiGuitar 2 with bends enabled, both for internal sounds and external synths. For external synths, if the patch bend ranges are not matched with the one selected in MG2, note pitches will not trigger correctly.

When trying out synths with MG2, I always prefer the ones with a Global Pitch Bend option. This vastly reduced the hassle factor, because you don’t need to save individual patches with the correct bend range to be compatible with the one in MG2

I’ve found synths vary a LOT in how they allow you to control bends. Here are some experiences:

Poison and Sampletank seem only to respond to Bend Range 2 Semitones in MG2. Even then, some patches in Sampletank don’t give correct note pitches. I can’t find a Global Pitch Bend option in either of these synths.

Music Studio, Korg iM1 and Synthmaster do have Global Pitch Bend. So far I’ve been using Bend Range 12 semitones in them and MG2, but found they work just as well with Bend Range 2. Since Bend Range 2 appears to be more common, I’m planning on switching to that for all uses.

However, I’m a bit confused: I often bend 3 semitones in my playing. Why does Bend Range 2 still track it effectively? Also, is there any intrinsic advantage in using one bend range over another, as long as MG2 and the synth are matched?

if the bendrange is “full” an new note will be started in MG.
The bendrange balances bend accuracy against range. For guitarsynths -12/+12 range is preferred (to include slides and whammy bars).
But the lowest common nominator is -2/+2 range. So that is why many (often older) synths are kind of stuck there.

Thanks Paul. I’m bending a maximum of 3 semitones. You say:

“The bendrange balances bend accuracy against range.”

  1. Please can you explain more fully - I don’t understand what it means.

  2. If I can choose between 12 or 2 semitones bend range but only actually bend 3 semitones in actual playing, which is the better option in terms of latency, or is there no difference?

  1. MIdi bend info has 14 bit precision, you can see it as: 13 bit for the amount, and 1 bit for the direction. 13 bit means: 8192 steps.
    So if you set it to range 2, the accuracy will be 200 cents / 8192 = 0.02 cents.
    Range 12 would mean 0.12 cents precision.
    Nobody hears better than 1 cent, so even the biggest bendrange will not deteriorate the perceived tuning.
  2. Latency has got nothing to do with it. You simply take the bendrange that is fitting best.
  3. If there is a tuning error then most likely the bendrange settings between MG and synth don’t match.

Thanks Paul for your helpful reply. Since there is no perceived performance difference and some synths without a Global Pitch Bend Option seem to default to Bend Range 2, that seems to be the most convenient choice overall.

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