String sounds with natural end


For me it’s nicer when a string sound don’t stop when I release the key of my master keyboard ; I would like a “natural” stop of this sound, what means that all happens like if I press the key until the sound stops “of himself”, I hope you understand what I mean.

Can someone help me ? Let me know if you need more information.



What synth plugin are you using?

The behavior of this depends on the synth or sample-player plugin (more specifically on the release time of the envelope used by the synth).


I am using fluid-synth, see picture.

The sound is 100% determined by the soundfont you loaded into FluidSynth. If you don’t like it, you’ll need a different soundfont, almost certainly. FluidSynth (and SF2 soundfonts in general) do not offer much (any) control over the release duration, it’s built into the soundfont.

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You might try increasing the Reverb dry/wet mix setting in FluidSynth. Technically this doesn’t increase the release time of the instrument sound, but it will create a “tail” of sound that might meet your desires/needs.

In general, I have found SF2 soundfonts quite unsatisfactory for realistic performances of acoustic instruments. They rarely sound like the real thing (which is sometimes a good thing, and sometimes not).

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Thanks Paul, and I am not sure I have well explained what I need…

Let’s take a sample, a bell sound : if I press a key and keep it, the sound stops after 5 seconds.

I would like that this sound lasts always these 5 seconds, even if I release the key after 2 seconds (so the sound lasts 5 - 2 = 3 seconds without I press any key).

Was it already clear for you please ?

tl;dr: get a different soundfont that sounds the way you want.

When you create the soundfont (.sf2) file you have to set the release-time (volume envelope) accordingly. In your bell example to 5 sec for the given sample.

Here’s an example for a crash-cymbal (that likewise needs to ring), when editing soundfont in (env release is set to 100sec):

When you use sfz you can set loop_mode=one_shot to similar effect.

An alternative work-around is to use a MIDI-filter plugin just before the synth plugin.

MIDI Monophonic Legato – Hold a note until the next note arrives. – Play the same note again to switch it off.