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Old 18th July 2004, 02:44   #1  |  Link
ursamtl
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Old thread for obsolete version of V.I bidule layout

Please Note, this original version of V.I has been replaced with a VST plugin and new Bidule layouts. This new setup improves on the original V.I by providing more flexible controls, the possibility of using the V.I algorithms in various programs besides Plogue Bidule, and professional solutions to avoid problems with file overloading, etc.

You can read all about it in
GUIDE: V.I Stereo to 5.1 Converter and II Surround Generator VST plugins

The rest of this thread contains messages about the old version, which is no longer available.

Regards,
Steve (UrsaMtl)

Last edited by ursamtl; 25th November 2004 at 00:26.
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Old 18th July 2004, 20:25   #2  |  Link
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needfulthings was updated

Hi folks,

I uploaded all the new files to needfulthings this evening - so go on transcoding
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Last edited by daphy; 18th July 2004 at 20:56.
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Old 19th July 2004, 13:58   #3  |  Link
DSP8000
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Very pleased with the results from the bidule, I like it!!!
Simple and very effective layout.It gives nice surround for instrumental music.
ursamtl, can you try to filter the rears with vocal remover so the bidule can be suited for vocal music as well?
The LFE sounds real & not overdriven, every channel sounds very good & gives clean sound stage.
Keep up the good work, I'm following the other thread about stereo2surround in NUENDO as well.

DSP8000
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Old 19th July 2004, 14:53   #4  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally posted by DSP8000
Very pleased with the results from the bidule, I like it!!!
Simple and very effective layout.It gives nice surround for instrumental music.
ursamtl, can you try to filter the rears with vocal remover so the bidule can be suited for vocal music as well?
The LFE sounds real & not overdriven, every channel sounds very good & gives clean sound stage.
Keep up the good work, I'm following the other thread about stereo2surround in NUENDO as well.

DSP8000
Thanks for the feedback. Yes, I was really happy with the LFE as well. It seems to give just the right amount of "omph" to the bottom without sounding unnatural. I also noticed the same with the center channel. It added to or reinforced the soundstage without sticking out or sounding disjointed.

As for the vocal remover idea, I'll give it a try, but I didn't really run into a problem. Vocals are present in the rear, but on my system, they were much stronger from the front so there was no problem with the soundstage. For instance, on two of my test tracks, Elton John's "Tiny Dancer" and Robert Plant's "Heaven Knows", the lead vocals were clearly front and center, but the background vocals in the chorus were pleasantly spread right around the back and front with ambiance. I got similar results for the choral part of Beethoven's 9th, although some of the solo voices in the recording I have of 9th tend to stand out in a strange way, so they almost sound like they're coming from the back. When I compared with the stereo version, I discovered that they don't sit well in the stereo mix either.

So again, what's been said so many times applies here, the source material is the key. It's the method of recording and mixing that determines the outcome. Sounds that are hard-panned to either side of the soundstage can sometimes sound weird in an upmix. I found that running the stereo versions of some old Four Tops songs sounded amazing through V.I-just like having the singers plus the Funk Brothers playing in my living room! Still, some of those hard-panned 60s recordings give unpredictable results.

I'm reading some material during my vacation that might give some more clues. I also got some nice results last night from adding some third-order ambisonic calculations to the encoder section of V.I. The added harmonics tended to both reinforce the front center and the ambience in the rears. That's to be continued when I get back from vacation.

Regards,
Steve.
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Old 19th July 2004, 15:26   #5  |  Link
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I agree totaly, it is the actual source that gives the final upmix sound.
However, the vocal remover(partial remover) idea sounds good to my ears & makes me "feel" real original 5.1
For now take a break & enjoy your vacation.

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Old 3rd August 2004, 20:52   #6  |  Link
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I set this up originally according to the "new method" in the original post for converting stereo to 5.1 surround and then came across the "V.I." method. I got confused by the diagram included in this thread especially since the instructions said to set up bidule according to http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.p...2851#post362851.

Other visual examples in http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.p...2851#post362851 show straight line connections that contradict how pin connections are supposed to be from the Emigrator to the Recorder. For example, the poster that added LFE capability showed straight through pin connections. I also saw graphics of straight through pin connections by Eye of Horus after showing the 1>3, 2>1, 3>5, 4>6, 5>2, 6>4 pin connections. I just find it hard to be sure what will work between the Emigrator and the Recorder if the pin connections aren't consistently the same.

As another point, automatic links are created in the vi.bidule. The player-recorder link can become inaccurate. After adding and deleting parameters, bidule appends a number for the next instance of each parameter. The default vi.bidule link is audio file player to audio file recorder. When you add a player instance it becomes audio file player_0. If you leave the default vi.bidule link, your recording will not function. You have to make sure the audio file player instance you've added in the interface is the player used to link to the vi.bidule audio file recorder instance.

Another observation. While I like faster processing of files, the vi.bidule grabs 100% of the processor time and has side affects. The cpu & disk utilization indicators at the bottom of the screen turn into a counter instead of cpu utilization and is empty for the disc utilization.

These aren't complaints, they are observations that I haven't seen posted by anyone since this thread started.

Edit: When I add Microsoft Sound Mapper, the cpu & disk utilization values appear. Must be because it has to play the audio at a normal rate of speed.

Here's something odd. The audio is speeding up during processing. The player shows what appears to be the normal playback time while the recorder is 11 seconds behind.

Last edited by old-hack; 3rd August 2004 at 23:13.
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Old 3rd August 2004, 23:04   #7  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally posted by old-hack
I set this up originally according to the "new method" in the original post for converting stereo to 5.1 surround and then came across the "V.I." method. I got confused by the diagram included in this thread especially since the instructions said to set up bidule according to http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.p...2851#post362851.

Other visual examples in http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.p...2851#post362851 show straight line connections that contradict how pin connections are supposed to be from the Emigrator to the Recorder. For example, the poster that added LFE capability showed straight through pin connections. I also saw graphics of straight through pin connections by Eye of Horus after showing the 1>3, 2>1, 3>5, 4>6, 5>2, 6>4 pin connections. I just find it hard to be sure what will work between the Emigrator and the Recorder if the pin connections aren't consistently the same.

As another point, automatic links are created in the vi.bidule. The player-recorder link can become inaccurate. After adding and deleting parameters, bidule appends a number for the next instance of each parameter. The default vi.bidule link is audio file player to audio file recorder. When you add a player instance it becomes audio file player_0. If you leave the default vi.bidule link, your recording will not function. You have to make sure the audio file player instance you've added in the interface is the player used to link to the vi.bidule audio file recorder instance.

Another observation. While I like faster processing of files, the vi.bidule grabs 100% of the processor time and has side affects. The cpu & disk utilization indicators at the bottom of the screen turn into a counter instead of cpu utilization and is empty for the disc utilization.

These aren't complaints, they are observations that I haven't seen posted by anyone since this thread started.
Hi old-hack,

Sorry if the instructions caused some confusion. When I said to follow the instructions from the other thread, I was referring mainly to what to do with the 6-channel file, as in how to run it through Besweet. I was going on vacation and someone asked me to post what I'd developed so far. I still intend to write a step-by-step guide once I clear a backlog of work that piled up while I was away. For now, I'll edit my original post to clarify the statement.

Nonetheless, I should point out that V.I is not meant to be used with Emigrator at all. The only VST plugin required is as stated at the beginning of this thread, the mda dither plugin. The pin connections for V.I follow the standard ITU spec for 5.1, Left Front, Left Right, Center, LFE, Left Surround, Right Surround. The pin connections in EoH's original guide are different because he is using the Pentagon speaker layout and then rotating it 36° to the left so that the #1 speaker serves as a center, #2 as left front, #5 as right front, etc. If you check other bidules uploaded here that use different speaker layouts either in Emigrator or elsewhere, you'll find that the pin connections change according to the setup. Just always remember that the target output connections (whether they be a 6-channel file recorder or a multichannel ASIO device) should be the ITU 5.1 layout L, R, C, LFE, sL, sR.

Yes, if you delete any objects in bidule, parameter links associated with them will also be deleted. Likewise, if you add a device, it won't automatically be linked. The choice here was to provide the V.I file in a "ready to go" state so that all someone needs to do is load a 2-channel file and choose 16- or 32-bit output format, and then create the 6-channel file. I left the bidule set to a 44.1 sampling rate, since the main interest in the threads here seems to be music and as far as I know, surround CDs need to be at a 44.1 sampling rate to work with DVD players.

Depending on your computer system, offline processing can take up a lot of processing power. The indicator changes at the bottom of the screen are part of the bidule program so there's no way to change that behavior in the bidule.

Thanks for your feedback. These are good points that I'll certainly take into account when I write a full guide.

Regards,
Steve.
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Old 3rd August 2004, 23:17   #8  |  Link
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That certainly clears up some of my confusion. However, when I load the vi.bidule, I can only see the audio file recorder with line running up and out of the screen. I can't see any connections that resemble your graphic in this thread.
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Old 3rd August 2004, 23:54   #9  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally posted by old-hack
That certainly clears up some of my confusion. However, when I load the vi.bidule, I can only see the audio file recorder with line running up and out of the screen. I can't see any connections that resemble your graphic in this thread.
Just hold down your up arrow key to scroll up in bidule, or CTRL+the up or down arrow keys to zoom in and out in bidule.
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Old 4th August 2004, 00:40   #10  |  Link
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Whew! I was going nuts trying to find a window refresh command or something that would center the graphics. Thanks.
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Old 23rd August 2004, 13:14   #11  |  Link
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Thanks to everyone for the encouraging remarks and feedback concerning V.I. Rather than answer your PMs and emails with the same response over and over, let me say that I'm working on the complete V.I guide. I've been experimenting with ideas I got from my vacation reading, so I may even implement a couple of these. In the meantime, V.I in its present form still provides excellent surround results, so enjoy!

Steve.
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Old 25th August 2004, 06:44   #12  |  Link
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Hi Steve,

after a really long 'abstinent multichannel periode' I tried your new bidule
Sounds cool to my ears - maybe I have to play with the LFE a little. Using Teufel speaker system M200/M6000 on a Yamaha A2/Luxman M02 (only for LFE) is always a little critically because this system is too 'honest' - if there is no bass in the source they wonŽt invent one!
On the other hand real good sources will be played fine

Back to the LFE - is it possible to integrat two controller for high bass f.e. (80-250HZ) and low (80-20HZ) ones? This should give possiblities to turn over the gap between some satilite + subwoofer systems in frequenzy process (hope youŽll understand what I mean -
my English... )


Finally I noticed again -> transcoding to DTS gives the whole thing the final kick! So I would always prefer DTS not AC3

Thx
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Old 25th August 2004, 11:54   #13  |  Link
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Not that I misunderstand something:

Is there a real ProLogic Surround decoder involved? Or does it just add some kind of reverb to rear channels, to give these speakers anything to output?
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Old 25th August 2004, 13:18   #14  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally posted by LigH
Not that I misunderstand something:

Is there a real ProLogic Surround decoder involved? Or does it just add some kind of reverb to rear channels, to give these speakers anything to output?
Hi LigH,

V.I is based on Ambisonic algorithms that are found around the internet. Although these are designed for material recorded using specific miking techniques, when they are applied to ordinary stereo signals, they redistribute harmonics and ambience already in the recording. In other words, no reverb is added. Reverb that already exists in the recording is spread out around the listener. If a recording is very dry with no reverb, then the dry sounds will tend to spread around the listener. ProLogic tends to put ambience only in the rears, whereas V.I distributes it around the full soundstage.

The best thing would be to give it a try. Some recordings will sound better than others due to how they're originally mixed, but so far I haven't found any music that didn't benefit somewhat from V.I.

Steve.
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Old 25th August 2004, 13:28   #15  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally posted by daphy
Hi Steve,

after a really long 'abstinent multichannel periode' I tried your new bidule
Sounds cool to my ears - maybe I have to play with the LFE a little. Using Teufel speaker system M200/M6000 on a Yamaha A2/Luxman M02 (only for LFE) is always a little critically because this system is too 'honest' - if there is no bass in the source they wonŽt invent one!
On the other hand real good sources will be played fine

Back to the LFE - is it possible to integrat two controller for high bass f.e. (80-250HZ) and low (80-20HZ) ones? This should give possiblities to turn over the gap between some satilite + subwoofer systems in frequenzy process (hope youŽll understand what I mean -
my English... )


Finally I noticed again -> transcoding to DTS gives the whole thing the final kick! So I would always prefer DTS not AC3

Thx
Hi daphy,

Glad to hear your period of abstinence is over. You might try adding a bit of equalization in the bidule between the Audio File Player and the V.I. group. Boosting the bass frequencies you seem to lack might do the trick. Don't try more than 3dB at a time because what seems to be a small boost at a given moment, often sounds too much the next time you listen to it. Our ears tend to get to accustomed to the modified sound. There are several good freeware EQ VST plugins out there. Probably one of the nicest I've seen is at http://www.kjaerhusaudio.com/ although Voxengo also offers a free basic EQ VST, the Voxengo EssEQ VST at http://www.voxengo.com/freevst/. You could also go into the Outputs group inside the V.I group and change the LFE crossover frequency.

For testing, you could try using CDRWs if your DVD player reads them ok. Mine does and I find this a great way to test a DTS CD before burning the final copy.

You're right, DTS really does seem to sound nicer for music. Depending on the encoder used, AC3 sounds good, but DTS seems to have that extra kick or sheen.

Regards,
Steve.

Last edited by ursamtl; 25th August 2004 at 13:31.
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Old 25th August 2004, 13:36   #16  |  Link
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I might also add that tons of free VSTs can be found at http://kvr-vst.com. Their search engine takes a bit of getting used to. If you do a search and get 0 results, chances are you clicked something wrong somewhere, but keep trying. I've found a lot of gems there!
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Old 25th August 2004, 13:42   #17  |  Link
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Understood.

I was just afraid, because many people want to prefer 5.1 over 2.0 just "because 5.1 is cooler", not because there are real 3D positioning parameters available at all (they tend to waste bitrate by uselessly blowing up audio streams).

So I'm probably not quite your target: Ambisonic might be fine for chill-out music, but not suitable for giving audio sources (like speech in movie audio) a more exact position in a sound space, or even reverse-engineer 5.1 sound from ProLogic encodes.
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Old 25th August 2004, 15:29   #18  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally posted by LigH
Understood.

I was just afraid, because many people want to prefer 5.1 over 2.0 just "because 5.1 is cooler", not because there are real 3D positioning parameters available at all (they tend to waste bitrate by uselessly blowing up audio streams).

So I'm probably not quite your target: Ambisonic might be fine for chill-out music, but not suitable for giving audio sources (like speech in movie audio) a more exact position in a sound space, or even reverse-engineer 5.1 sound from ProLogic encodes.
All I can say it to give it a try. You might actually be quite surprised with the results. No one is "targeting" you. We're simply sharing this info because it's fun and cool.

V.I is primarily designed for music, but I imagine it could be useful for movie soundtracks as well, depending on the quality of their stereo mix. If you just want a big movie-style surround, you're probably better off just running it through ProLogic II. for music, however, I'm much more satisfied with the results from V.I than from my receiver's ProLogic II circuit. The sense of realism is better and more of the natural ambience present in the original recordings comes through. I've tested V.I on a variety of music. Yes, it sounds good on "chill out" music, but anything with ambience benefits greatly. Here are some examples:

Led Zeppelin - Gallows Pole: acoustic guitar and vocal intro appear as in the stereo version mixed left and right respectively but with recordings natural reverberation in the surrounds. Song buildup spreads the instrumentation out nicely all around. Repeated background vocals near end are much more distinct than in stereo version.

Pink Floyd - Time: dry clock sounds appear everywhere. Deep reverberating drum sounds in intro come from front but with big reverberation sound spreading all around. Good separation of keyboards.

Beethoven's 9th (fairly generic recording): Solo vocals appear in front with choral parts spreading all around. Music in front with reverb all around.

Four Tops - Bernadette (stereo mix): Bass and lead vocals appear in front center. Music spreads across fronts with some wrap around to the side and reverb in the rear.

Rush - A Farewell to Kings: Classical guitar has uncanny sense of realism as it moves from front left to right side. At the same time vibes sound spread out. Chirping bird sounds come from right and sound as if they were outside a nearby open window.

Pink Floyd - High Hopes: Bell sound from front right with a great sense of distance and reverberation. Buzzing fly sounds incredibly realistic.

John Williams - Concierto de Aranjuez: Tremendous sense of realism on guitar with natural reverb all around. Orchestra sounds natural and big.

Led Zeppelin - Black Country Woman (remastered): Plane at beginning sounds very real. Guitar and vocals bright and real with front imaging good and reinforced by very slight reverb in rears. When drums come in they sound as if they're right in front of you.

Roxy Music - Avalon: Percussion comes from front but is reinforced by natural reverb spread out all around.

Seal - Love's Divine: Thunder claps and rain at beginning come from all around. Vocal is dry in the front center. Reverb on vocal appears gradually. Synth strings fade in nicely and sound really spacious behind dry instrumentation and tight bass.

Deep Purple - Lazy (remastered 2-channel version): Incredible recording to start with, but the sense of the room is amazing when the guitar riff starts and the drum stabs happen. This is a great example of how a good recording can shine through a good surround upmix (it's even more amazing given the circumstances of the original recording

Anyway, I could go on. The point is, you have to try it. Test a track or two, burn them to CDRW using the instructions in this forum and see what it sounds like when played through your DVD player.

Regards,
Steve.
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Old 25th August 2004, 16:01   #19  |  Link
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Indeed - I never shall argue without testing first.

I just wanted to state "This is not a Dolby Surround Software Decoder".
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Old 25th August 2004, 16:13   #20  |  Link
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Quote:
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Indeed - I never shall argue without testing first.

I just wanted to state "This is not a Dolby Surround Software Decoder".
Ok sorry, I didn't get this from your original message or follow-up.

To decode a Dolby source it has to first have surround information encoded. What we've been doing here is create a surround mix from an original two-track stereo source. We have two choices, either add some sort of artificial reverb--whether it be by a synthetic processor or convolution--or else extract the natural ambience already present in the stereo recording. V.I uses the latter approach. Dolby ProLogic II also extracts some natural ambience from a stereo recording , but it tends to route all the ambience to the rears. V.I and many of the other methods here attempt to distribute the sound a bit better than this.
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