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Old 11-18-2005, 11:45 AM
shakti shakti is offline
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 63
Default Converting Sample Cell libraries to Kontakt

I've got a big library of Sample Cell stuff and I miss using it.

I'm looking for anyone who has successfully converted them to a more modern library format like Kontakt for instance.

What did you use? Did it work? Did you successfully convert Banks?
What did you lose in the conversion?

Anybody? I can't believe I'm the only one out there with this situation.

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Old 11-25-2005, 05:59 PM
musicabos musicabos is offline
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Sao Paulo/Brazil
Posts: 78
Default Re: Converting Sample Cell libraries to Kontakt

some usefull links for convert samplecell files

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Old 05-28-2006, 12:56 PM
Keith Hernandez Keith Hernandez is offline
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 23
Default Re: Converting Sample Cell libraries to Kontakt

I have CDxtract and it works great for converting almost any kind of sampler file. It can do samplecell to kontakt but I have never done it.
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Old 08-23-2008, 07:46 PM
Miklin Miklin is offline
Join Date: Dec 1969
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Posts: 6

Shakti (or others), how did you get on with this? (I know it's 8 years later!)

I'm looking at Kontakt 3, partly on the strength that it says it can load SC mac libraries, but it seems vague what this means. Obviously anyone can open aiff samples, but what about banks which consist of lots of instruments which consist of lots of effort in mapping....

I suppose the real answer is that there aren't many 10-year-old libraries that aren't bettered by new stuff, but there are things like Erskine's Living Drums that I'd like to be able to carry on with.

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Old 09-04-2008, 12:40 AM
Alimos Alimos is offline
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Athens, Greece
Posts: 97
Default Re: Converting Sample Cell libraries to Kontakt

What about Structure?
Even the Free edition can import Sample Cell libraries.
I have the LE edition and like it a lot, but I don't have any "vintage" sample cell library around to give it a try. (Actually I would love to have access to that Peter Erskine living drums)
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Old 03-13-2023, 01:27 PM
shakti shakti is offline
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 63
Default Re: Converting Sample Cell libraries to Kontakt

Welcome to 2023 thread!
So, I never made a move on this Sample Cell to modern sampler project. I am considering doing it again. I found that importing Sample Cell into Sample Tank, while possible, is a right pain in the ass. I'm not blown away by Sample Tank at the best of times either.

So, for those of us still out here with old libraries, what did you end up doing?
I've just written to the Chicken Systems folks to see if they're still in business.

What is your go to Sampler these days that let's you easily integrate your old libraries like Sample Cell? Hell, I even have some Synclavier sounds laying around that I transferred to CDROM, but nothing can read them. Chicken Systems says they can read them for big money, but I can't think that they are worth that kind of spend...

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Old 07-03-2023, 04:30 PM
makinworks makinworks is offline
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 8
Default Re: Converting Sample Cell libraries to Kontakt

I am glad it says 2023 because this thread was looking quite old and over the years it has become easier to just drag and drop samples from one app to another but Sample Cell I am not sure but again it must have something.

First, I had a power Mac NuBus with an old digidesign ProTools 442 card and v 3.2 ProTools but I did not have the daughter card for fx power nor did I have the sample cell card for the TurboSynth and sampler functions.

But I did have SoundDesigner2 the two track software that sd2 files were created .

I know it has long since become obsolete as a software just like Peak by Bias and many people are sad as well

I still have a version of Peak that connects to my hardware sampler E4XT and that format is strange like Akai with all the programming for samples , presets and the huge amount of midi data that can be programmed . I mean layers too depending upon which sampler emu or Akai

But I digressed

I did see a Sample Cell card still for sale at a music store and it was new in the box
Ha ha Ha! Likewise if I had the powermac I might have tried it just for fun

But today it seems like choosing to use a horse and buggy vs a jet.

Kontakt is or NKS is the most popular sampler for translating samples and I mean presets and patches not just samples because to many samples is the basic waveform and or the first Lego of the entire structure.

And again I know very little about this if only to use it for a midi controller and then it becomes very useful and important for all the third party apps and AU and VST and etc etc

I use iPad and iPhone apps like crazy today and there is a few good ones that have so much power and yet some have the same nomenclature or lack of programming ease that many many people are just not aware or interested in these apps.

But for me I wanted a sampler app that was like Emu or Akai and to have the ability to program the splits and layers as well as have some sort a f control over the library and I mean libraries of samples and entire GB of these too!

I will end here because I am not sure if this is still live or not but also I just wanted to refer you to ask Sweetwater music because the sales reps there are very good at finding answers if they don’t know and they are also for years been my goto for tech support when many times Avid or ProTools wanted to charge me.

The last thing I just inquired about was a midi controller and there are so many to choose from it really takes a good deal of research or just asking the sales rep and he breaks down your options without trying to over sell you but also and I love this last part , also I was educated and reminded they midi and controlling new features like polyphonic after touch and the even newer scales and modular Ai sequencing tools or whatever they call it . Sorry it’s new but it is like the older synths that used to play arpeggio and go random or up and down? The Korg karma at one time was so new it would emulate a real guitar player picking style and many were fooled indeed
This is not Ai as we call it today so I may have used the word incorrectly

But the fact I was looking for a hammer weighted 88key I had assumed Kurzweil was the best for my budget

Then when I learned about the midi controlling my and players and or midi utilities and or sequencer arpeggio warp things? And the whole business of just being able to act as a usb midi interface and even allow you to plug in a usb stick or drive being GB huge! And then the midi controller had a editor that was able to read these files and then give you the ability to then edit them into your own programs for performance presets without a computer !

It’s a different beast that the main brands like Native Instruments or Arturia or even the Roland or Kurzweil which lacked many features I had assumed were standard.

Ok but back to the SampleCell issue

It is not really that hard in fact and many options will do this for you automatically give or take maybe some of the System exclusive data but in most cases like Peak the software I mentioned before it was SDMI and or SCSI and this was to control a CDROM and well as we know optical drives are almost dead

If you are on an iPad or iPhone check out the app AudioLayer because it is a sampler for the iPad and iPhone and it has the ability to just keep this iCloud library or libraries and like a virtual cdrom you can load more or less anything depending upon how large your internal storage space has available

Another reason I mention this app is because it comes with a huge library of orchestral and I am simply amazed at how serious a package this is for composing or demo composing for the film composer to then later re-record with live orchestra.

We all know we might not need this much but the point is that never in all my years had I had the opportunity to have such a library available on the cloud and the ability to read other formats like the windows sample version and or sd2 and or wav and or aiff files ..,which have been changed I think now to AU by Apple?

Anyway. I hope this long letter will help you and others

But again it is not an answer to but a software but to say I don’t know yet
But assume that the answer is Sweetwater rep or tech

And or the access to these apps that are newer and so they can read and convert the old formats in the fly and also as I said in the cloud in my case iCloud but Dropbox is a solution too

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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Old 07-27-2023, 07:24 AM
John_Toolbox's Avatar
John_Toolbox John_Toolbox is offline
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Minneapolis
Posts: 5,461
Default Re: Converting Sample Cell libraries to Kontakt

The chicken systems translator is by far the best one out there. But I wouldn't expect more than a conversion of sample mapping data for pitch and velocity zone from any translator.... you will find that it isn't an exact swap. I never did an exact comparison to see what doesn't transfer over, but the way an ADSR envelope behaves or how the sampler responds to a specific velocity will never be the same.

I started converting some of my old sample cell stuff to Kontakt about 10 years ago and the amount of tweaking I was doing in Kontakt was taking too much time, so I only finished a few discs.

Is it worth it? If you like the sounds and they are used frequently - absolutely, Kontakt is a very powerful program, especially if you have the ability to implement the scripting language. One of the main things that improved for me was managing samples. When you aren't limited to 32MB of RAM, you can create a Kontakt instrument with all of your goto sounds ready to go. Even without scripting, you can do quite a bit, like controlling different layers with key switches or MIDI CCs.

Another method you can use to get a more accurate conversion is to use an auto sampler program to record the output of the sample cell card. Apple bought the company that made "auto sampler", so it 's no longer as powerful as it used to be, but you can use it to create instruments in exs format in MainStage, and then use chicken systems translator to convert from exs to Kontakt. There may be better solutions out there now, I haven't done much with sample libraries for the last 6-7 years so I'm out of the loop (pun intended).
- John

If a MIDI event triggers a sample of a tree falling and there's no one there to hear it, does it make a sound?
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