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"morphing" software/plugins? Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 19th December 2010
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Jfriah's Avatar

"morphing" software/plugins?

Hey folks, working with a director who isn't totally sure how to achieve what he's hoping to (and *I* am not sure he's totally sure about WHAT he is hoping to achieve) but the gist of it is:

He wants to have two actors appear indistinguishable by voice so wants to combine their voices (we are ADRing both actors doing both their own lines and that of the other actor) somehow.

I basically said we could just vocalign each actor and then play with levels of whose voice is overtop another, but that could get messy quickly.

Any suggestions on what to try plugin/software-wise? Haven't done much in the way of morphing before. He mentioned past usage of one of his sound editors doing the usual 'morphing a voice with a pig squeal' but this is different in that it is taking two voices delivering the same line and therefore not as 'extreme'.

Old 19th December 2010
Old 19th December 2010
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Jfriah's Avatar

Yeah thanks Matti, I eyed that one.
Old 19th December 2010
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ggegan's Avatar
Check out Alchemy from Camel Audio. It's a relatively inexpensive sample player and manipulator that allows you to do morphing. Jim Stout has a video on the Designing Sound web site that shows him using it for sound design.

I've been looking at this IRCAM software from Flux. Haven't tried it yet, but there is a demo version. There are two plugins in this bundle that sound like what you are talking about, Trax Transformer and Trax Cross Synthesis. I don't know if they are available individually:

Flux:: sound and picture development
Old 19th December 2010
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tekkentool's Avatar

What about the Aet in Kontakt 4?

Old 19th December 2010
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You can morph with KymaX as well..
Old 19th December 2010
Gear Addict

kymaX seems to have the best editor for aligning transients and perform very good sounding morphs.

alchemy is really cool but I guess it would not be easy to find a workflow with it.

and yes the new flux:: stuff seems to offer the most quality plugin for voice manipulations out there atm.
Old 19th December 2010
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AfterViewer's Avatar

GREAT INFOFILE ! Excellent! thumbsupstikethumbsup
Old 22nd December 2010
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Originally Posted by ggegan View Post

I've been looking at this IRCAM software from Flux. Haven't tried it yet, but there is a demo version. There are two plugins in this bundle that sound like what you are talking about, Trax Transformer and Trax Cross Synthesis. I don't know if they are available individually:

Flux:: sound and picture development

Hey Guys, first time posting...

i saw the post and felt i had to say something..

i've used Flux ICRAM Tools Transformer and cross Synthesis.
Currently working on a Animation feature where we are playing around
with the pitching character voices and making people sound younger/older
the whole bag really.
Flux was suggested to us as a possible high quality voice manipulation tool by the music department and so the production purchased it for us.

But after a very short time (with in the first few minutes of using the plugin) we were very disappointed.

Please note i followed the user manual and online material on correct usage very carefully. I spent around 2-3 weeks getting to know the program and its features

Also for us it is very important to maintain the quality of the voice.

1) Flux is VERY CPU heavy.
2) Simple pitch Shifting from 2 to 6 semitone higher than the original source with the formance linked to the pitch setting.. The Quality of the sound was severely compromised.

Artefacts up to the eye balls! It hates Breathes! and Love to make things sound thin (sounds like when you de-noise a recording to far)
And we found it would sound slightly different everytime we recorded it to the track.

3) Drifting of sync (not uniform drifts like you see when delay compensation isn't happening.. these would happen within words and syllables)

To get the best results we would have to target words or sentences at a time.
You do need to play a lot with it..

I did side by side test on flux against Kontakt 4 and Pitch n' Time Pro.

Kontakt 4 and Pitch n' Time Pro would always maintain sync (within 4-9 subframes drift) and the sound quality was amazing compared with flux

so we abandoned Flux altogether.

I had a little play with The cross synthesis and it frustrated me pretty quick because of the quality of sound issues. but if you wanted to automate the Kinda 'Morphing' it does between 2 sound sources.. i just couldn't get it to do it smoothly because of the load on the CPU.
From what i could tell it was more to do with taking a sources dynamic footprint (if that makes sense) and applying it to the another target sound.
from memory i think same with with Spectral information.. again automating this feature was so annoying i abandoned it.

The AET Function in Kontakt for is interesting!
i've got some good results for far with Morphing human
voice into Animal. Where on the Mapping page in kontakt the Sample on velocities 0-60 would be influenced by a sample on the same note but velocity of 60-127 (above it) and morph its spectral information between them.
So you'd have Man screaming taking on the Spectral qualities of a large Bird Screaming using a script that lets you use Midi CC to control Velocity...
l.. but haven't played with it much more for a little under a month.

i played briefly around the same time with the Camelaudio Alchemy with the morphing.. and i think i'll be able to get it to do what kontakt does.. (not sure if it'll sound any better or not.. plus last i looked it was still VST only.. no RTAS support... that was a month or so ago though...)

Hopefully that all made sense and wasn't to boring but i felt i had to warm people about ICRAM Tools ..Have a really good go at the Demo before you buy it... i think for music stuff it might be alright.. and it does do an ok job at changing singers SEX and AGE..
BUT not good enough i think for the money they charge.... Very disappointing..

hopefully i hadn't upset anyone who uses it...

Old 22nd December 2010
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ggegan's Avatar
Thanks, SoundMiller. That is very helpful info. You can waste a lot of valuable time on a wild goose chase unless you know someone who has actually used the plugin, because the manufaturer hype always makes these things sound like the greatest thing since sliced bread. I had read in a Flux user forum that the demo wasn't allowing people to use all the functions, which kind of made me wonder what the deal was. That's why this forum is so great, you get to benefit from other people's experience.
Old 22nd December 2010
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Denis Goekdag's Avatar

All excellent advice in this thread thumbsup

I use Prosoniq Morph for morphing and their TimeFactory for pitch-shifting/time-stretching/formant-shifting, as well as the KymaX TAU editor, which allows you to do all of the above plus time alignment in one go.

For Morph, you'll want to make sure the two voices align as closely as possible to allow the algorithm to sound as natural as possible, there can be lots of artefacts if you have, for example, roomtone morphed into a vowel.

For aligning as well as subtle pitch/formant processing, Melodyne does an excellent job. It handles all the Vocalign stuff plus gives you pitch-shifting, harmonization and formant shifting that sound OK within a reasonable range. Outside of that range stuff gets artificial sounding pretty fast.
Old 22nd December 2010
Gear Addict

Yes aligning the sources is very important. That´s when I got my first usefull results. Before that I never understood what morphing could be good for....

Thank you Sound Miller for sharing your experiences.
Old 29th December 2010
Gear Head
TLR's Avatar

Might not be exactly what you're looking for, but If you're working on a mac, definitely look at the set of (amazingly free) plugins created by Michael Norris (Michael Norris: SoundMagic Spectral), a bunch of them were used in the Machinarium Soundtrack and you can listen to samples on the website.
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