PB Soundscape

Channel Vocoder manual


Contents


1. Introduction
2. System Requirements
3. Features
4. Usage
5. License
6. Registration
7. Credits
8. Contact


1. Introduction


Thank you for downloading Channel Vocoder! Channel Vocoder is a traditional software channel Vocoder, with a total of 32 channels. A vocoder works by taking a modulator signal, usually a human voice, and a carrier, usually musical chords of some kind, and processing them together to make it sound as if the voice is singing the notes of the carrier. This creates a quite interesting, synthetic effect that is often used to create robot voices for computer games and singing instruments for modern Dance songs. However a channel vocoder has a million other uses as well... The only limit is your imagination and the amount of time that you are willing to spend perfecting your carrier and modulator files.
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2. System Requirements


Windows 98 or above, 128 MB of RAM and at least 10 MB of available disk space. Also remember that high quality Wave files get quite large so make sure you have enough space to store them.

A soundcard is required if you would like to use the preview feature, but not if you are only rendering to disk. Please note that the audio may break up while previewing on older computers, if the processor is unable to stream the audio fast enough. When rendering to disk this is not a problem.
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3. Features

  • Sophisticated processing algorithm
  • High quality output
  • Works with both 8 and 16 bit audio
  • Supports sample rates between 8000 and 192000 hZ
  • Realtime preview feature
  • Saves the result to disk in PCM Wave
  • Adjustable parameters to control the vocoding process
  • Simple and comprehensive user interface
  • Works well with screen reading software for blind and visually impaired users
  • Completely self contained - requires no third party host
  • Requires no sound card if only saving to disk
  • Extremely cost effective
  • A great addition to your audio software collection!
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4. Usage


It is very easy to use Channel Vocoder. First you select the carrier wave file either by entering its path in the text field or clicking on the browse button next to it. You do the same for the modulator and the output files. It is not necessary to select an output file if you only want to preview, but the carrier and the modulator files are always mandatory.

After you have selected the files to use, the interesting part begins. Now you can either save the result to disk if you have selected an output file by clicking on the vocode button, or listen directly without saving the audio to your hard drive by clicking preview. If you are saving to disk you cannot adjust any parameters while the audio is being processed, so make sure you get the settings right first. This is where the preview feature comes in handy, because you are able to change the vocoder parameters in real-time. This allows you to find the perfect settings for your particular project without having to save the audio to a file each and every time.

There are two main factors that control the vocoding process, instrument clearance and vagueness. Instrument clearance simply allows you to select how much of the original instrument you want to hear. If set to 0, the output resembles the voice perfectly and no trace of the instrument can be heard. This may sometimes cause you to lose some of the harmonics of the carrier, so it is not always advisable to set it to 0. Most of the time however, if you are aiming for a clean output and not using a very frequency rich carrier, it will usually produce quite good results.

Vagueness is similar to instrument clearance in a way, the only difference is that it makes the voice sound more like the instrument without actually letting the carrier audio blend through too much unless you crank it up to 80 or 100 percent. As always, the best way to see the difference is to try it out for yourself.

The last parameter that you can adjust is the output gain. All that it does is to set the volume of the output. For example, if you are getting a distorted signal it is most likely because the output gain is set too high. The volume of the output is calculated based on the volume of the carrier, so if your instrument recording is very loud it is not wise to crank up the gain too much. 50 % is good in most situations, but if the carrier is extremely loud you may get distortion even then. Once again... Experiment! In most cases it is necessary to adjust the level of the audio in your sound editor anyway when blending it in a mix, but that is beyond the scope of this manual.
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5. License


If using this program you must accept and abide by all the terms below.

You may
  • Distribute the vocoder package in its original form in any medium, as long as no changes have been made. This includes but is not limited to the vocoder itself, this manual and the audio examples.
  • Sell and distribute material created with the program in any way you like, as long as you own the rights to it.
You may not
  • Disassemble, reverse engineer or in any way attempt to access and/or modify the internals of the program.
  • Charge anyone for the software except to cover your own reproduction costs such as blank cds.
  • Create and/or distribute a method for unauthorized users to access the full version of the software. This includes but is not limited to patches, key generators and any other means of bypassing and/or breaking the registration system.
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6. Registration


Channel Vocoder is Shareware, which means that you can try it out before you decide whether or not to buy the full version. The demo has no time restriction, however it inserts a periodic beeping sound in the output which makes it unsuitable for production use while still giving you the chance to experiment with all the features. The beeping is only inserted in recordings that are 16 bit, 8 bit files sound so bad anyway so that a watermark isn't even necessary. The beep varies in pitch and length depending on the sample rate of the files that are used.

To order the software, follow these steps:
1. Copy your product ID to the clipboard.
2. Visit our website at
http://www.pbsoundscape.net/
and follow the instructions on how to place an order.
3. When you have received your unlock key, click on the register button and enter the key in the text field that appears. When you are done, click OK.
4. If everything worked as expected, the program will be upgraded from a demo to the full version instantly. If something went wrong, feel free to contact us for assistance if you are unable to solve the problem on your own. However, before contacting us please make sure that you entered your unlock key exactly as it appears in your confirmation email with no whitespaces in the beginning or in the end, and that none of the letters are capitalized.

The unlock key that you receive from us is based on your product ID, which is unique for every computer that you run the vocoder on. Thus, the key will only work on the computer from which you obtained the ID. If you have more than one computer and need aditional keys, please contact us.
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7. Credits


The vocoder algorithm was written by Hasan Murod, the user interface was designed by Gemma Hadfield and the surrounding programming and documentation as well as the audio examples was done by Philip Bennefall.
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8. Contact


If you have any questions or comments, if you have found bugs in the software or if you just want to chat, feel free to contact us and we will do our best to help you.