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#1 2016-12-01 10:13:57

molten
Member
Registered: 2016-12-01

Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

While I understood this program was in beta, I navigated Imitones homepage and was surprised to see what looked like a decent little recording program, with a nice, soft, colorful design.

I acknowledged that it was still in beta, as well as being essentially geared towards the more casual user, but perhaps I just expected more from it.

And I don't want to crap on the program or its makers because I can see this being potentially a very good program if it just had some more features involved.

I bought the 60$ pro version because why would I bother paying for the same program twice? I'm no pro, but if I ever decided to get more into music I figure it'd be great to have the new features as theyre added.


But that is neither here nor there and I don't want to make accusations without explaining them.

So when I opened this program, looking towards the websites main video, I expected a nice polished design, but what I got was a pixelated mess with no option to expand the program horizontally to see the whole range of notes, or vertically, because i want them to stay on my screen longer as they play.

imitone.png

(EDIT: If you wanted a quick fix I think changing the background color to a darker purple would hide the jagged edges better until you are ready to address that issue completely. Changing the color of the grey won't help what's inside the purple as is, but it will at least be a little easier on the eyes.)


This was the first sign that I had been had. Those warm, inviting, visuals that were advertised were simply not there yet. And what's more is that this program doesn't seem any more adaptable for the average casual user than any other program.

Typically when you buy a program it should at least look like what is advertised, and while I realize this is beta, it seems that they have no problem photoshopping the program on their website to be perfect, which is upsetting.

And while there was no advertisement showing the program being changed to different sizes, it should be up to the user to decide if they want a long, wide version of imitone, or a very tall one, not stuck on the stock setting and this will upset many casual users that they cannot change the size or shape of the program.


To use such casual visuals in the advertising makes you, or at least made me think, that this program would be more versatile and adaptable to teach casual users more about creating music, which brings me to my next point.

You would think that a program centered around recording voices would have some way to record them itself. While I realize that this program is meant to be used with another program, what exactly is the point of using inviting, casual, design if the user is going to end up using a complicated program they were trying to avoid in the first place?

While having your melodies converted straight into midi data is useful, most people don't know where to go from there.
I was honestly shocked to see that there is no record button on imitone. And really, it should have three options if this program is going to have a future. To record your voice as it is, to record the midi data, and to record your voice AS midi data (basically as it's own instrument you can manipulate.)

While I realize this goes much further than the original scope of the program, I don't honestly see people buying this program once they realize how limited it is, and unless it goes further than the original scope, it will only get sales by inviting people in with warm visuals and realizing that the program essentially does very little.

Another feature which would deviate from the original design, is when you're done recording, there is a playback feature so you can listen to what you've recorded, and in line with other midi programs, it should allow you to pencil in your own notes and edit the notes youve recorded. Why not? Why make someone use another program to do what they wanted to originally do on imitone?

I'm not even saying that this should be a full blown midi program but if you found a way to implement some variable filters, and a save system that lets you export the midi file to things like Ableton, Reason, Fruityloops, or even Garageband, it would be a huge success. As I see it now it is more of a novelty because anyone who makes music on midi controllers already knows how to pencil in, or play with a controller, what they want to. This will only attract people who have melodies stuck in their head but don't really know how to get them out, which is a very small market, because most of those people are going to brush off their ideas and forget about them in the first place.

It is only dedicated musicians who will stick around to turn their melody into a full fledged song, whether they are skilled or not, and really imitone should help them develop their vocal track all that they can before they pop it into another program to add drums and guitar and whatever. This should be a program that someone records their voice on, sees the midi data pop up, and they go "oo, that note sounds bad." So they change it in the program. And then they get a little interested in editing their voice so they play with their filters, and boom, all of a sudden they sound like a robot and they're loving it. Anything that would make this program more accessible and fun and ready to use would be a welcome addition because as it is now, there really isn't much to convince someone to buy the program other than the visuals.


I really don't want this program to fail, but if imitone is going to survive in a world of countless others, it really needs to do two things. Polish, polish, polish, and add more, more, more. I do think the intended design is awesome (even if thats not what it really looks like) and that the general idea is great. But if it was pushed a little further and developed into a full-fledged program it could potentially be a very big deal. It just needs to be handled correctly.

I hope I haven't offended anyone here, or on the team, but that's just my opinion and I really do hope this program makes some improvements, because as of now, I can only really see it being used in very self limiting scenarios.

Keep up the good work, don't give up yet.

Last edited by molten (2016-12-01 19:48:08)

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#2 2016-12-01 11:47:37

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Hello, molten ---

Thanks for the detailed feedback!  I'll address this point-for-point:

Graphics:  Looks like you have a hardware acceleration problem making the graphics jagged.  While the causes vary, there's a good chance that my next update will fix the problem.  Otherwise, try updating your graphics drivers.  You'll find it looks quite a lot more like what's advertised on the site afterwards.

I'm about to put out the biggest update (0.9.0) in the history of the project, and it includes a top-to-bottom redesign of the app.  That should be available tonight, with an official announcement to follow.

Resizing:  This is a nice feature, but it's just not a high priority.  The pitch tracking and note interpretation tech need to be perfected before features like this become a big concern.

That said, I did implement a note zoom function, and I could slip in a hidden keyboard combination to enable that in today's build.

Recording, Editing and Pitch Adjustment:  It sounds like you might be after a product more like Melodyne.  I have no plans to develop imitone into a pitch editor the likes of Melodyne or AutoTune at this time.

I do plan on adding features for MIDI recording/saving, built-in instruments and audio file input, but imitone will not develop into a DAW.

This will only attract people who have melodies stuck in their head but don't really know how to get them out, which is a very small market, because most of those people are going to brush off their ideas and forget about them in the first place.

You might be surprised --- this "small" market is my livelihood.  Everything about my app, from the wording on the website and the graphic design to the internal algorithms (designed to work even with low-grade microphones) is tailored for the needs of the beginner musician.


You'll find the new update does add quite a lot of polish, plus a handful of important features.  My top priority moving forward is going to be the continued development of the pitch tracking and note interpretation technology.  While those have made some strides here, they're still not up to the level they'll need to be for a final product.

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#3 2016-12-02 05:54:10

Handmusician
Power Tester
From: North France
Registered: 2015-01-27

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Awesome upgrade, good job Evan ! Pitch tracking pretty good now, fastest notes are well recognized even if not perfect yet. Love the new visual, presets and the quick-bend key. Now i suggest a key for holding the note when we stop singing (sometimes don't have enough breath...).
Just one problem : I don't see anymore my prefered Asio driver : "Focusrite USB 2.0 audio driver" (scarlett 2i2).

Last edited by Handmusician (2016-12-02 05:57:00)

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#4 2016-12-02 09:50:15

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Hey, HM ---

Collect imitone's log file for me, please --- control-R opens the folder, it's called "log".  I'll have a look and see if the ASIO driver is getting skipped over.

Does imitone 0.8.2 still recognize your focusrite?

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#5 2016-12-03 12:47:31

Handmusician
Power Tester
From: North France
Registered: 2015-01-27

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Thanks, but today i have it again ! Perhaps my focusrite half failed yesterday (i could use the mic plugged in it but not the asio driver). I tried imitone 0.9 on ubuntu too, it failed, i read the log and see that audio APIs are unavailable (-1000), previous versions work.

Last edited by Handmusician (2016-12-03 12:50:49)

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#6 2016-12-05 17:26:22

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

WINE emulation might work again if I provide some alternative PortAudio DLLs, omitting ASIO and Kernel mode audio.  That will probably happen after this next patch.

Actually I might be interested in seeing the error report that Ubuntu generates, if it succeeds in writing one.  Try searching around for "app_error.txt", possibly in the directory opened by control-R.  I may also be doing a proper Linux port in the coming months --- time will tell.

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#7 2016-12-06 05:05:43

Handmusician
Power Tester
From: North France
Registered: 2015-01-27

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Here's the error report for imitoe 0.9.0a on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS :


Plaid Error Report (level 1, Fatal) (critical) (back. thread) (NO engine)

Memory Violation in  plaid_portaudio::Driver::refresh

Executable: C:/Program Files/interactopia/imitone beta 0.9.0a/imitone.exe
Run status: Running
Run status info: SDL_Main
Source: CRT Signal Handler
Run Timer: 00:01
Start Time: 2016-12-06 11:59:39
Error Time: 2016-12-06 11:59:40
Error Time (GMT): 2016-12-06 10:59:40
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Profiler: Main Thread
Hashcode: AQRDM7

Backtrace:

void __thiscall plaid_portaudio::Driver::refresh(void)
bool __thiscall plaid_portaudio::Driver::initialize(void)
__thiscall perilymph::Devices::Devices(class perilymph::App *)
__thiscall perilymph::App::App(class plaid::Universe::Entity &)
"Task Launch"
void __thiscall plaid::Program::handle(class plaid::Command &)
void __thiscall plaid::Console::handle(class plaid::Command &)
"tasks"
[root]

**********************************************************************




Just for information, on Ubuntu, previous versions crash when i quit imitone and, if you're curious, that's the report :


<Plaid/Gadget> Error Report (level 1)
on 2016-12-6 at 12:10:12

Binary: C:\Program Files\interactopia\imitone beta 0.8.2\imitone.exe
Start-up Error: (CODE #PBDX)
Memory Violation
in
plaid_sdl::GraphicsImp_SDL::~GraphicsImp_SDL

Signal Handler
Main Thread

Backtrace:
__thiscall plaid_sdl::GraphicsImp_SDL::~GraphicsImp_SDL(void)
__thiscall plaid::Graphics::~Graphics(void)
void __thiscall plaid::ModuleSet::cleanup(void)
__thiscall plaid::Program::~Program(void)
[root]


--------------------------------------------------

Last edited by Handmusician (2016-12-06 05:24:55)

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#8 2016-12-06 15:01:57

Will Brown
Member
Registered: 2016-10-31

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Hello!

Well, I’m not sure how many potential customers there are out there like myself, but so far this software is exactly what I was looking for. Originally I was looking for a way to do something similar through hardware, like a vocal harmonizer or vocoder, when I ran into imitone. While I play a little guitar, I’m not proficient enough to recreate some of the ideas I have in my head or at least not as fluid as I could sing them. While not perfect yet, I am super excited about this software. I am able to quickly sing a melody line or solo and get my ideas down. I can layer drum tracks and live guitar tracks in the DAW and then use imitone to add bass lines, synth leads, etc... Awesome!  It’s also been a catalyst to get me deeper into virtual instruments which is an area I have been a little skittish of in the past.

I will play devil’s advocate and say that I would prefer to keep the program simple and focus on the core functionality vs. adding a bunch of bells and whistles that could probably be done easier and better in a DAW.

The added plus, this software is just fun. Being able to sing and have your voice directly converted to music is pretty freaking amazing in my opinion and if folks can’t see how this kind of technology could really open the doors and stoke creativity I just don’t get it.
To the original posters feeling like he had been “had”, there is really no excuse because a quick google search will bring up multiple demos and youtube videos walking through the functionality and interface.

Last edited by Will Brown (2016-12-06 15:05:29)

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#9 2016-12-07 01:26:50

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Hey, Will ---

Thanks for the words of encouragement!  I'm glad to hear that the software is working well for your creative process --- it has taken a lot of work to make it viable for jotting down ideas like that!  And the new tech I'm planning will make it better still.

It's worth noting that I had an E-mail conversation with molten (the OP) and he concluded that he was after a product more like Melodyne.  I'll have to think about how to avoid setting up the wrong expectations for my software in the future.

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#10 2016-12-07 13:06:58

Handmusician
Power Tester
From: North France
Registered: 2015-01-27

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

On Ubuntu, visual c++ 2013 can't be installed (only vcrun 2010). perhaps it's the reason why imitone 0.9.0 can't run.

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#11 2016-12-07 17:25:09

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Hey, HM ---

Actually you can just uncheck Visual Studio and it should install fine.

You'll want to replace imitone's portaudio_x86.dll with a reduced one from our library of alternative versions.  I suggest trying WASAPI only or, failing that, MME only.

Odds are your chances of getting it to work with one of those is pretty good.

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#12 2016-12-08 06:12:21

Handmusician
Power Tester
From: North France
Registered: 2015-01-27

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Yeah, imitone run with MME, but crash as soons as i select the audio input.
The report :

Plaid Error Report (level 1, Fatal) (critical) (back. thread) (NO engine)

Exception E06D7363 (C++ exception) in "SEH Error Reporting"
at address @7B83C3DE
Exception Class: ".?AVscheduler_resource_allocation_error@Concurrency@@"

INFO: @19930520, @0033F484, @009FD028

Executable: C:/Program Files/interactopia/imitone beta 0.9.0c/imitone.exe
Run status: Running
Run status info: SDL_Main
Source: Structured Exception Handler
Run Timer: 00:20
Start Time: 2016-12-08 13:06:36
Error Time: 2016-12-08 13:06:56
Error Time (GMT): 2016-12-08 12:06:56
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Profiler: Main Thread
Hashcode: MENEGC

Backtrace:

class plaid::Ref<class plaid::AudioDevice::WorkerThread> __thiscall plaid::AudioDevice::Stream::createWorker(class plaid::Ref<class plaid::AudioStream>,bool)
__thiscall perilymph::Scheme::Detection::Detection(unsigned int,class plaid::Ref<class perilymph::Scheme::Input>,unsigned int,class perilymph::Scheme::Output *,unsigned int,const struct perilymph::Config::Tonal &)
class perilymph::Scheme::Detection *__thiscall perilymph::Scheme::connect(unsigned int,class perilymph::Scheme::Input *,unsigned int,class perilymph::Scheme::Output *,unsigned int,const struct perilymph::Config::Tonal &)
void __thiscall perilymph::Devices::selected(class perilymph::Devices::Selector *)
void __thiscall plaid::GUI::dispatch(class plaid::GUICursor &,class plaid::GUIElement *,void (__thiscall plaid::GUIElement::* )(class plaid::GUICursor &),class plaid::GUILayout *,class plaid::GUILayout *)
void __thiscall plaid::GUI::update(void)
[root]

**********************************************************************

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#13 2016-12-08 15:59:02

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Having some problems, but I can see the potential...

Heya, HM ---

I'm moving this discussion to its own topic:  http://imitone.com/munity/viewtopic.php?pid=1141#p1141  --- I replied there.

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