Scaler 2

 I am always skeptical of anything that is said to lend a hand to composition. Most here have likely either been exposed to music theory or have self trained on the basics.Enter Scaler, a relatively recent addition that loads in a DAW as a plugin. Most recent release of the plugin is Scaler 2.

I looked at this for quite some time before I finally bought it because I reasoned I wanted to be the one composing and didn't want any help. That hasn't really changed for me. I'm glad I have it though, let me explain.

The plugin is a crash course in music theory on steroids. Simply amazing. Some admit to using Scaler as their composition partner. I won't go as far as that. I doubt I'll ever use it in that capacity. What I really DO like is the accessibility to any kind of music construction all in one place. Think a smorgasbord with all selections present. One could easily get fat on this plugin.

Since I don't have a 500 page music encyclopedia in my head ready for instant retrieval Scaler makes an excellent way to remind myself of the musical possibilities in any given musical situation. TBH I haven't directly used any of the suggestions and instead, found myself playing with it like a toy for grown ups.Hopefully soon I'll put it to better use.

I thought maybe someone else might find this most useful. I am in no way paid or recompensed for mentioning Scaler. I just think it's a cool tool and I wanted to share it.

Some videos describing products are captivating. Let's just say that most videos out there on this plugin weren't made by people especially gifted in this area *yawn*. If you can manage to plod through the details or download the demo I think when you actually try it you'll be impressed!

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Replies

  • Part of me was wow, really amazing tech.

    and then it was “just press a button and out pops a full composition”.

    Not sure if this is really the way we should be going.

  • Sounds like a good deal for those who work diatonically and who'd like help on how chords should progress. As Michael Lofting has said (more or less) it might encourage laziness. As within compositions themselves there are tensions in working out how to proceed and the consequent resolution when a solution is found. All part of it.

    How it would deal with surprise modulations and the more difficult modes, the locrian for example, I wonder.

    My misgivings about it concerned the labelling of the keys which pitches it at the less experienced.

  •  I can certainly see that it might encourage laziness. The main thing about it I flagged was the comment, " If you have no musical training", or " If your  musical skills are limited."  That tells me it might be aimed at producers as opposed to composers as one target group. I don't claim to know everything about music theory. My issue is if I haven't used a scale or system in awhile the relationships can become foggy. This is where the product shines for me personally. I can immediately pick out both modulation connections to a different key or look at the various possibilities within a key in a composition. Since I don't often strictly compose to a chord system it isn't as useful that way to me personally, though the chords could lead me to a melody.

    The software itself is a little more complicated than it first appears. It's like a slide rule for any and all possibilities in not only the most common scales but in more uncommon ones. I could take an idea and immediately hear how it would sound in another key or in an unusual scale immediately if I know how to use it.

    I see it more as a musical  reference. I don't look to be plopping those chords into my compositions any time soon. Back in the day if a composer was attempting to expand his or her ideas based on solid theory they might have reached for a book, I guess today this is another option. Probably a boon for EDM producers since that music is chords based right on the beat. To be fair a lot of other music is solidly chord based as well.

    I never want to get "lazy" so I'll just be using it as a reference....maybe. Only then if I can't figure it any other way.

  • Scaler 2.1 updates and bug fixes.

    Changes to v 2.1.0:

    • New Chord Editor
    • Control individual notes and velocities in each chord
    • Use the circle of fifths to easily create chord progressions
    • Search for any chord in Scaler
    • More than 100 new expressions in triplet feel and across several time signatures
    • Add bass/inversion display in chord name
    • Audio-Detection
    • Improved accuracy of detection
    • Reduce the number of duplicate chords in results
    • Filter-out unlikely chord types to reduce noise
    • Add ability to detect from a file in the source dropdown
    • New Modulation Preset - Neo-Riemannian
    • Create harmonic transformations from any chord
    • Support custom sounds folder location
    • Support custom chordsets folder location
    • Multi-Select Pattern and Pattern Chaining improvements
    • Add ability to apply extracted voicing to a multi-selection of chords
    • Ability to export chord names to MIDI markers when dragging to DAW
    • New Arpeggio Octave Range option
    • Add ability to select the output MIDI channel
    • Keys-Lock - Chord Mute function now works properly when used with DAW-Sync
    • Ability to select and remove multiple notes with lasso in Detect panel
    • Add ability to synchronise the selected scale across instances

    Bug fixes:

    • Fix “Right-Click -> Select All” in Pad View
    • Fix erratic behaviour when deleting from a multi-selection in Pad View
    • Fix bind to suggested pathways refresh issue in Modulation
    • Fix UI not redrawing correctly after Clear State
    • Fix lowercase display for minor chords in Modulation panels
    • Fix empty large clip when dragging from MIDI Capture
    • Other fixes and overall stability improvements
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