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Old January 11th, 2009, 07:24 AM   #1
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Toast 10/Smartsound (Music Creation Software?)

A friend of mine pointed me at Toast 10 as it has a capability, I believe, to make a music soundtrack which "responds" to what's going on in the video (as well as all the other features it offers which seem to make it very well worth considering for it's modest purchase price), assuming you don't end up with really naff 'musac' (elevator type music) that is! I can't find any specific mention of this on the Roxio website though unless this is the Smartsound Pro feature?

My typical normal route is royalty free music that has commercial use permission from jamendo or within FCS2 etc. (and I'm aware of the many other similar options as these get mentioned regularly on here).

This question is specifically aimed at seeking anyones experiences with this particular music creation feature of Toast 10/Smartsound Pro. Thanks!
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Last edited by Andy Wilkinson; January 11th, 2009 at 07:57 AM.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 09:42 AM   #2
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As a Toast and Jam user, both Roxie products, I've found getting in touch with them for support has been very difficult.

One of the features, streaming to disc never did work on my computers. They got entangled in the Mac OS the wrong way a few years back and after upgrading their program, some features no longer worked. I hope they have cleaned things up a bit. I still use Roxio and Toast, but based on past experience, I think they could do better.

The music feature you refer to appears to be SonicFire. It looks like it may be available as a stand alone from the original company. SmartSound Sonicfire Pro 5 - Overview

Looking at the above site and at the Roxio Site, it appears that this is sort of a low level, chopped down version for Roxio. You know, one of those "extras" that come with so many softwares. Not very well implemented unless you get the full version. It looks like you have to purchase their music CDs in order for the system to work. The SonicFire website seems to be selling them for $99 each. The Roxio site doesn't talk about this.

So your friend may be right that you can create moods with music, but it appears you need THEIR music to do it. Garage Band, Sountrack Pro and Acid Loops have mood choosing features for their royalty free music although they rely more on loops than complete compositions.

All in all, not a bad idea as a way of marketing the repackage of a music library, but how well does it really work? Do you really want to change the level of the guitar, keyboard or other instruments? Will that change the mood of the piece enough to matter? Dunno.

if you're willing to put down $99 for ten tracks on each CD. Here's the library. You can listen to what's on each CD. SmartSound Sonicfire Pro 5 - Order Form

Is this what you're talking about?

Regards,

Ty Ford
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Old January 11th, 2009, 09:46 AM   #3
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Yes, that sounds like what he was talking about. Thanks Ty for, as always, an informative and interesting reply. Doesn't seem such a bargain now!
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Old January 11th, 2009, 10:09 AM   #4
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Just FYI, guys, if you have the Sonicfire software you can preview all of the tracks from the entire library online and if you don't think you want enough from a given disk to justify purchase of the entire CD, you can purchase the individual tracks via download. Most of them run $15 to $25 per track when bought individually. Sonicfire's multilayer selections are especially interesting because they leave the various instrument tracks within a cue separate so essentially you can remix them to suit your needs. The full version of the software is something like $50 but if you buy a disk or two they usually give you the full version of the software free.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 11:02 PM   #5
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I've been using Sonicfire 4.5 for 2 years now and find it better than Cinescore especially from the music side.
I only buy the ML multilayer discs which come in 8 track form for mood mapping and remixing. Using the rhythm tracks I create underscores to follow main themes helping give the impression of an original music score for the program. Works very well.

My preference is for the studio orchestral and rock stuff; you can't beat real musicians and they're very well recorded with great studio separation between the sections to be able to use the rhythm only tracks. Nice exercise for the recording studios involved.

Version 5 has features to help you select suitable music for your video sequences, which may help folk get started.

SmartSound have superb support, their software is fast and reliable, you can download your music and they regularly offer bulk discounts so make a note of what you want to buy later. Last year I complained about a poorly mixed disc and they withdrew and remixed it, 2 of the 3 owners are pilots...can't be all bad :)

Steve, they've discontinued selling single tracks off their discs, they found it wasn't good marketing. And they've closed their Backstage library at $199 per 10 tracks for limited sales.

Sign of the times specially when you can buy 10 great, current Hollywood muso tracks for $25!! No copyright, just amazing. I really do hope SS is making some profit at this time.

And they've now got low package pricing for film festivals, educators etc.

SmartSound Solutions

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Old January 12th, 2009, 07:29 AM   #6
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I've used Sonicfire on-and-off for almost 10 years. I think it's a great product and simple to use. Having said that, I favour working with musicians face-to-face to get specific results. On a low-budget often time-constrained schedule then Sonicfire could be the answer. Just be sure to check the redistribution rights/agreement for each library because IIRC they can differ between tracks.
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Old January 12th, 2009, 08:25 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allan Black View Post
Sign of the times specially when you can buy 10 great, current Hollywood muso tracks for $25!! No copyright, just amazing. I really do hope SS is making some profit at this time.

Cheers.
Hey Allan,

I was on their site yesterday and they were selling discs for $99 each. Can you post the discount?

Regards,

Ty Ford
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Old January 13th, 2009, 12:42 AM   #8
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Hello Ty,

Yeah, $US99 is the current full price. If you have SF vers. 4.5 or 5 Martha offers you short time deals...none this year so far.

'There's only a few more days left in our FINAL Deal of the Week for 2008! It's our third "Cheaper by the Dozen" sale with 12 different stereo music discs on sale for $25 each or All 12 for just $249! You'll save 75% to 80% on music with this sale. Since this music works with the new timing control, spotting and sensory searching features of Sonicfire Pro 5, it offers more creative possibilities than ever before.

Listen and Order Here:
Specials

This sale ends on December 31st, 2008 at 11:59pm Pacific Time.

Enjoy,

Martha.


Cheers.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 12:10 AM   #9
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I find SonicFire to be a pretty versatile medium. I also very much like DigitalJuice's similar product, Stacktracks, which does pretty much the same thing as SonicFire Pro... you can select or deselect various instruments, rearrange the music, and create music of a pre-determined length... plus they include 15 and 30 second cuts for most of their selections. Again, as with SonicFire you have to buy their music, but for StackTracks, that's only $15 per album if you buy them 5 at a time. You can also preview them online.
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