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My EWI setup & favorite instruments

Updated: Jan 3, 2021

Someone asked me how I set up my EWI, WX5, VST and other instruments. Here I summarize my configuration, setups and favorite instruments. I will update this post continuously.

1) EWI / EWI5000 / WX5 setup

- If you want to see my hardware setting, please click My EWI.

- I wanted to control more midi parameters by Midi. So I attached a Livid Guitar Wing, Source Audio Hothand USB controlled to EWI and WX5. I can have more buttons to control midi parameters but these two devices have motion-sensing accelerometer. I raise up and lower down wind controller to add more expression such as volume augmentation, flutter, growl, or portamento time control.

A. EWI Initial Setup reference

I think the following reference is very useful but you will need to choose your own setting that fits most to your music style.

- EWI5000 Setup and Calibration Video by Bernie Kenerson (see video below)

* I had used Sax fingering for years but nowadays I am adopting EWI fingering since I watched above video.

B. My EWI 5000 setup (from EWI Patch Editor)

C. My MIDI setup

I use Cantabile as a main performance music station, which enables multiple midi plugins, midi filters operation in various ways - creative ways! My EWI/WX5 are sets as the following ;

- Breath : midi CC 2

- Bite : Vibrato depth control

- Glide : Growl control

- Pitch down : pitch down

- Pitch up : pitch up or portamento time control by midi CC

- Livid Guitar Wing (button, sliders, motion): control volume or portamento time, other multiple midi controls

- Hothand USB midi controller (motion) : control flutter, etc

- Necktar Pacer midi foot pedal controller : control mutiple midi CC : Glide, portamento, expression, program change, etc

D. Audio Processing

In my opinion, most VST instruments sound flat, less dynamic and less musical. VL synth sounds are great out of box though. So I use multiple effect plugins to overcome these problems. My favorite effect plugins are ;

- Compressor : Fabfilter Pro-C, PSP Vintage warmer2, Soundtoys Radiator & Decaptator

- Voice enhancer : Noveltech voice enhancer

- Delay : Echoboy

- Reverb : Ozone 5 reverb, Fabfilter Pro-R, Soundtoys Little plate , Reverberate 2, Valhalla reverbs

- Equalizer : Fabfilter Pro-Q, Console 1

- Loudness monitor : Youlean Loudness Meter

2) My favorite instruments & programs

There are so many synths, VSTs for EWI players. I own many but the followings are my favorites(I also added some audio examples);

1) Flute – Swam flutes, XpressO flute patches

A. Swam Flute

2) Clarinet/Oboe – Swam clarinet/Oboe, VL1-m patches

A. Swam Oboe : Gabriel's Oboe played by Sandalo Giordano

B. Gabriel's oboe I played this with Swam oboe and Swam flute

3) Saxophones – VL1-m saxophone patches, Vl70-m Saxophone patches, Swam Saxophones

A. VL1 synthesizer Soprano Saxophone patch played by Miliotakis Kostas

B.VL1-m Soprano Saxophone patch played by me

C. VL1 Alto Saxophone patch player by Kostas Miliotakis

D. VL1-m Also Saxophone patch played by me

E.VL1 Tenor Saxophone patch played by Edgar Hernandez

F. VL70-m Alto Saxophone patch played by Dave Chambliss

G. Swam Tenor

H. Swam Alto Saxophone

4) Strings - Swam Violin/Viola/Cello, VL1 violin patches , XpressO violin/Cello patches

A. Swam Violin played by Alistair Parnell

B. VL1 violin patch played by Kostas Miliotakis

5) String ensemble – NI Session String pro , Motif Rack XS string patches

6) Trumpet – Sample modeling Trumpet, VL1-m patches, VL70-m patches

A. Sample modeling Trumpet , how to set up with Aerophone by Alistair Parnell

7) Trombone – Sample modeling Trombone, Motif Rack XS trombone patches

8) Brass ensembles - Impact Soundworks Bravura scoring brass, NI SessionHorns pro, Motif Rack XS brass patches, XpressO brass patches

A. Bravura Scoring Brass by Impact Soundworks (well responded to EWI)

9) Harmonica – VL1-m harmonica patches, VL70-m harmonica patch, Chris Heins Chromatic harmonica

A. VL70-m Harmonica patch played by Dave Chambliss

10) Analog Synth : Roland SE-02 with Boss RV-500

11) Analog Synth : Moog Mother 32

12) Digital Synth ( Monophonic Wavetable synthesiser) : Craftsynth 2.0

13) Digital Wavetable Synthesizer : Serum

14) Digital emulation soft synth : Korg Monopoly VST

3. My Patch Editing Programs

A. VL70-m : VL wizard , developed by Rudy Verpaele

B. VL1-m : SoundQuest - PC version and iPad version

C. Motif Rack XS editor : Yamaha Voice Editor Essential(iOS) , Motiff XS Rack Editor (PC)

Motif Rack XS Voice Editor :

Motif Rack XS Mix Editor :

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