Spitfire and Sibelius

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Although we do not encourage our customers to use our libraries with Sibelius - as it is mainly a notation software - creating realistic mock-ups with it is also possible, and there are a few tricks that will help you achieve that using Spitfire products.


First of all, have a look at this demo, specifically created to show as many dynamics and articulation changes as you can fit in two lines of music!


Midi CC messages in Sibelius.mp4


You will need to make sure that Kontakt 5 is listed as your Playback Device in Sibelius. Go to Play – Setup and click on the little icon shown below:


This will take you to the Playback Devices options, where you should create a new Configuration and add Kontakt as one of the Active devices:




You should now be able to add instruments in Kontakt through the Mixer:


Note that in the Active Devices, you will have to have as many instances of Kontakt listed as you intend to use.


Inputting MIDI messages

CC (Continuous Control) data is crucial in using our products, since all the different parameters that alter the sound of a specific instrument are controlled by CCs. For instance, if you want a note on the oboe to start quiet – or piano (p) – and get louder – maybe mezzo-forte (mf) or forte (f) – you will tweak the parameter called Dynamics with a CC so as to reflect this increase in loudness.

By default the Dynamics control is assigned to CC1, Expression to CC11, Volume to CC7, Vibrato to CC21 and Articulations to CC32. Look at the following example:


In this particular example, Sibelius will set CC32 at a value of 11 and CC1 at a value of 120.

Midi CC messages range from 0 to 127 and in order to input this information correctly into Sibelius, you will need to follow this syntax exactly:


~C[CC Number], [CC value]


Note that these messages are case-sensitive, so a lower-case ~c will not be valid. The easiest way to type this text is in Technique text (Cmd/Ctrl + T).


With the increasing number of articulations in one same patch, it became necessary to set a standard for our libraries, and this is what the UACC (Universal Articulation Controller Channel) is for. When you Lock to UACC as shown below: 


You will see a message under the articulation that will tell you the value of CC32 you need for the selected articulation:




The CC32 values for all the articulations will be consistent throughout our products (with the exception of some of our older products). Here is a list of all the current UACC articulations:



1: Generic

2: Alternative

3: Octave

4: Octave muted

5: Small (half)

6: Small muted (half muted)

7: Muted (cs/stopped)

8: Soft (flautando/hollow)

9: Hard (cuivre/overblown/nasty)

10: Harmonic

11: Trem (tremolando/flutter)

12: Trem muted (tremolando/flutter cs/stopped)

13: Trem soft/low (trem sul pont)

14: Trem hard/high (flutter overblown, trem sul tast)

15: Trem muted lower (tremolando cs/stopped sul pont)

16: Vibrato (rachm, molto or vib. only)

17: Higher (bells up/sul tasto)

18: Lower (sul pont)

19: Muted Lower (cs/stopped sul pont)

20: Generic

21: Alternative

22: Octave

23: Octave muted

24: Small

25: Small muted

26: Muted

27: Soft

28: Hard

29: Harmonic

30: Trem

31: Slow (portamento/glissandi)

32: Fast

33: Slurred (legato runs)

34: DetachÈ

35: Higher (sul tasto)

36: Lower (sul pont)

37: Single string (sul C/G/etc.)

38: Muted Slow

39: Soft Slow



40: Generic

41: Alternative

42: Very short (spiccato/staccatissimo)

43: Very short soft

44: Leisurely (longer staccato)

45: Octave

46: Octave muted

47: Muted (cs/stopped)

48: Soft (brushed/feathered)

49: Hard (dig)

50: Tenuto

51: Tenuto soft

52: Marcato

53: Marcato soft

54: Marcato hard (bells up)

55: Marcato longer

56: Plucked (pizzicato)

57: Plucked hard (Bartok)

58: Struck (Col legno)

59: Higher (bells up/sul tasto)

60: Lower (sul pont)

61: Harmonic

62: Soft CS (brushed)

70: Trill min 2nd

71: Trill maj 2nd

72: Trill min 3rd

73: Trill maj 3rd

74: Trill perf 4th

75: Multitongue

76: Multitongue muted

77: Fanfare



80: Synced - 120bpm (trem/trill)

81: Synced - 150bpm (trem/trill)

82: Synced - 180bpm (trem/trill)

83: Synced CS - 120bpm (trem/trill)

84: Synced CS - 150bpm (trem/trill)

85: Synced CS - 180bpm (trem/trill)




90: FX 1

91: FX 2

92: FX 3

93: FX 4

94: FX 5

95: FX 6

96: FX 7

97: FX 8

98: FX 9

99: FX 10

100: Upwards (rips and runs)

101: Downwards (falls and runs)

102: Crescendo

103: Diminuendo

104: Arc

105: Slides

106: Crescendo (stopped/muted)

107: Diminuendo(stopped/muted)

108: Upwards stopped (rips and runs)

109: Downwards stopped (falls and runs)

110: Disco upwards (rips)

111: Disco downwards (falls)

112: Longs Single string (sul G/C/etc.)

113: Longs Lower Distorted

114: Longs Higher Soft (super sul tasto)



120: Instrument specific (reserved)

121: Instrument specific (reserved)

122: Instrument specific (reserved)

123: Instrument specific (reserved)

124: Instrument specific (reserved)

125: Instrument specific (reserved)

126: Instrument specific (reserved)

127: Instrument specific (reserved)

Short articulations, which are velocity sensitive, will react to dynamic markings (Expression text in Sibelius) so if you write a in the score, a lower velocity will be triggered than writing an or ff.


So inputting CC data on Sibelius will create hidden text messages in the score that will control our libraries so that you can switch articulations, amount of vibrato or dynamics! This is fiddly and time consuming, but it will result in some great mock-ups if your only audio software is Sibelius.




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