VSTi Guitars sound like Pianos
Old 23rd March 2012
Gear nut

Thread Starter
VSTi Guitars sound like Pianos

Hi all,

I recently got tons of VSTi Guitars in Kontakt and Other Vsti as well as Fab Four and its PLAY (v3) player.

Question is this:

i dont know much about midi, im a hands on guy, i just wanna plug-rock-rec. what is it that i need to learn to get VSTi's like Guitars to sound Natural ? I know it can be done since ive heard Demos done and they sound good (not Great) but most of my Stock Setting guitars have a Piano like Attack vs a fingered or picked sound.

Garritan JABB use to have what was called Phrase Models and they would cause random articulations of Expression, Attack etc. To me , i dont know MIDI much , i know Tubes and Preamps, PLEASE someone tell the barebone basics of how to tweak VSTis so the Articulation is more natural , ESP for Guitar Attack and Release..

I think it has to do w CC11 (expression) and Velocity, etc... but i look at MIDI manuals and all i can think is 10th grade calculus class (i failed)...


Old 23rd March 2012
There's really no easy way to get a good sounding VST guitar. It takes some research and a lot of experimentation.

Direct recorded, clean guitars.. that you have to put through virtual amps and effects, are the best kinds of guitar libraries IMO.

With no knowledge of how to play a guitar (I'm a keyboard player).. I bought NI's Komplete and Vir2's Electri6ity a couple years ago. I've been learning how to tweak guitar setup basics.. and amp tone design (w/Guitar Rig) ever since.

Midi editing techniques are really important to learn as well. I do a lot of articulation switching, and design my own layouts for the many keyswitches available.

I know, that even with all this work.. I'll still never get totally convincing guitar sounds.. but i can get close. And I'm still learning.. so hopefully with more time it will get better.

The trick to ditching that piano-like attack.. is to turn the pre-pick noise up to the point that you hear a lot of pick noise, before the actual tone of the string. This will require shifting the entire midi tracks delay time, forward, several ms.. to compensate.

Most guitar libraries ship with patches set to zero pick delay. They do this so you won't get lag when playing the patches live. And it makes the guitar patches sound really terrible.

So.. that might be a starting point for you at least. From there you can tweak various parameters to humanize it further.


My youtube page has a few examples of some of the VST guitar stuff I've been doing: Progtronic - YouTube

Here's the latest:

Old 23rd March 2012
Lives for gear
Real guitar,its a vst instrument...

Sent from my PC36100 using Gearslutz App
Old 24th March 2012
Gear nut

Thread Starter
thanks... how do you shift the midi track ...just grab and move it?'

someone should invent a MIDI Articulation Prog that you could run THRU and choose diff Articulations for diff Type Insts, and it would do this prior to your Midi reaching the VSTi.. The JABB Phrase Modeler did this:

Mike's K2 Scripts

...but its only fo Kontakt.
Old 24th March 2012
How you time shift tracks, depends on the host app.

In StudioOne, it's in the track inspector.. under 'Delay'. You set the offset, plus or minus, in milliseconds. It should be somewhere similar, in other DAW's. Look at all the options available for individual tracks in your host.

Some guitar plug-ins will even give you a time offset estimate somewhere in their settings.. which will vary, depending on a number of settings you may have tweaked, that would affect this.
Old 24th March 2012
Gear maniac
millennial's Avatar

Keep in mind that the notes that you're programming also affect how "real" a programmed guitar part sounds. You have to think like a guitarist when you're programming guitar parts - that means playing a maximum of 6 notes at a time.

Also, if you're programming chords, use common tones when shifting between them. This will make your parts sound more realistic.

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