Author Topic: Advice for making USTs from scratch?  (Read 807 times)

Meta

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Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« on: August 08, 2012, 02:57 PM »
I looked through and didn't see a thread like this so... here goes.

I really want to try making USTs from scratch so I'm not at the mercy of what midis I can find (and what midis would actually work, on top of that.) I've never tried anything like this before, so I was looking for advice and how to go about it.

I don't know how to start or where to go from there. I know I need to figure out the tempo, but I don't even know how to do something like that. I have a tiny bit of musical training but haven't put it to use in the last 4 years so I'm a bit rusty, but I can at least read sheet music.

So yeah, if anyone would be kind to post their processes, and even steps on who they complete them, that would be really, really, awesome. And the more the merrier, since I'm sure people do things different ways. Thanks!

PKLpikachu

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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2012, 03:20 PM »
I'm not sure if my method is that great, but here goes:

1. Download the off vocal of the song and the original.
2. Listen to the song to find its tempo
3. After you've found its tempo, listen to the song again one verse at a time and add notes into UTAU by ear.
4. render the UST and compare it to the original.
5. make any necessary changes to the UST. (i.e. changing note lengths or pitches)
6. repeat steps 3-5 until you're done.

I'd like to note that you add lyrics after you're completely done with all the steps. It helps with timing the UST if all the notes are "あ". I also like to use Defoko when making USTs, but that's personal preference.

Ant

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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #2 on: August 08, 2012, 04:34 PM »
Now I'm wishing I recorded my last UST making. :\ I make the MIDI separate in FL Studio, though it could work with any DAW. Posted this in a thread the other day:

Quote
Oh snap, I just finished making a UST, I was thinking about screencapping it and doing a tutorial, but it's too late now. All that's left is pitchbends, which I suck at. OTL

I'll try to explain what I do for USTs:
Making the MIDI from scratch:
1. Get the song as an MP3/WAV/whatever (not off vocal).
2. Put it in the timeline (i'm using FL studio) and create another track for the lyrics.
3. Open up the new track in the piano roll and choose a simple instrument like a piano or short synth to act as the "lyrics," or where they would go in the finished product. make sure the two tracks line up, and start placing the notes so that they match the singer in both pitch and placement.
4. When you're done, choose Options > macros > prepare for midi export, then File > export MIDI. Put it in a safe place. Open it in UTAU and start entering lyrics.

Then just make pitchbends and you're done. :) Hope that wasn't too confusing!
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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2012, 06:27 PM »
Now I'm wishing I recorded my last UST making. :\ I make the MIDI separate in FL Studio, though it could work with any DAW. Posted this in a thread the other day:

Quote
Oh snap, I just finished making a UST, I was thinking about screencapping it and doing a tutorial, but it's too late now. All that's left is pitchbends, which I suck at. OTL

I'll try to explain what I do for USTs:
Making the MIDI from scratch:
1. Get the song as an MP3/WAV/whatever (not off vocal).
2. Put it in the timeline (i'm using FL studio) and create another track for the lyrics.
3. Open up the new track in the piano roll and choose a simple instrument like a piano or short synth to act as the "lyrics," or where they would go in the finished product. make sure the two tracks line up, and start placing the notes so that they match the singer in both pitch and placement.
4. When you're done, choose Options > macros > prepare for midi export, then File > export MIDI. Put it in a safe place. Open it in UTAU and start entering lyrics.

Then just make pitchbends and you're done. :) Hope that wasn't too confusing!

Hmm. That's an interesting way to do it! I don't own FL Studio, will it work with umm... is it the demo version?

Ant

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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #4 on: August 08, 2012, 07:18 PM »
yep. But in the demo you can't save halfway through, you have to either export it as a MIDI and then import it later, or do it all in one go. The demo lasts forever though, it's not timed.
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Tala

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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2012, 06:51 AM »
Here's a ... thing to help with the tempo :D
You just play the song and tap the space key to it...

http://www.all8.com/tools/bpm.htm

YOU KNOW YOU WANT ME.

EchoBlossom123

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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2012, 06:49 AM »
I can't make them completely from scratch- I use FL studio to make a midi first, then import it into UTAU ( similar to someone else's post, I think)

poorly explained vid of my process if your're interested >>~*How EchoBlossom123 makes her USTs*~

ntzrmtthihu777

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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2012, 12:05 AM »
Hmm... thank you all for your input on this process, lol. I have been just fiddling with placing notes and trying to make it sound right, but these are more systematic and appealing to my mindset :D
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shinami

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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2012, 02:56 PM »
Here's two things I want to say on this matter:

1) I dislike "tap for bpm" finders. They can be innacurate. Instead I use a free software called MixMeister BPM Analyzer; just Google it and you can easily find it. Just open it, direct it to the folder the off vocal is in, and use the number it gives. Some songs have tempo changes, but it's very very very rare in Vocaloid, but in those cases you have to split the song into the parts.
So yeah, much much much better than just tapping.

2) This really helps with USTs.
UTAU is arranged like music. There are four smaller lines that are contained with a thicker line - four beats to a measure (For waltz beat you can go to View and change to 3/4 for waltz time). After you observe that, observe other USTs. For the most part songs have very solid rhythms and note lengths. And this is applied to UTAU.
So all in all, you use notes to fill in either half of one beat, a fourth, the whole thing, etc. I use Length to edit that.
480 - one note (a whole note)
360 - dotted half note (1/2 + 1/4)
240 - half note
120 - quarter note
Those are the base lengths. BUT there's technically a base of "60" - you can use 60 for an eighth note, 300 for an odd rhythm, etc. If you want a very quick consonant end, like sometimes in Japanese they say "kak" when in romaji/hiragana it's "kaku", use 30 or 15 but be sure to take it off of the preceeding/following note to keep to perfect time.


...Woah music rant.
But yeah, basic math/music knowledge is all that's really needed to make USTs from scratch. That's what I do.
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ntzrmtthihu777

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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2012, 04:43 PM »
Wow, big thanks Shinami-sensei >.<
I am a huge math nerd, and this is the sort of thing I really like/am good at. Very much appreciated.
I recommend all UTAU enthusiasts use 7zip to compress their voicebanks. It includes the character encoding data, resulting in maximum portability for hiragana and kanji named banks.
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PurinPuff

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Re: Advice for making USTs from scratch?
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2012, 11:45 AM »
1. Download mp3 + off vocal.
2. Use the BPM Analyzer for the mp3.
3. Place your tempo into UTAU.

4. For the melody of a song, I usually do it by ear, but if you're prone to losing notes easily, (for example, I sing the note I need to place in, so if you're like: "well that threw me off," when UTAU hits a sour note,) a keyboard can be useful for note names (so you can place it directly into UTAU instead of siding the same note around). For the rhythm of notes and rests, I try to compare the length to the note before it (ie. was the previous note shorter? was the rest earlier the same length as the rest now? etc.)

5. Compare to the original, or try to listen to how it sounds in the off vocal. If you have a bad judge of timing, compare it to the original. If you have a good sense of timing, compare it to the off vocal.
 
Yep, and that's how I'm doing my current .usts.