Libraries usually contain instruments that are designed for a special purpose.
A typical instrument consists of the following:
The program structure of your instrument in the Program Tree of HALion might look as simple as this:
The program structure of your instrument must fulfill the following requirements to work in HALion Sonic (SE):
The macro page must be attached to the top element in the Program Tree. In the example above, this would be the element Instrument. HALion Sonic (SE) will not see the macro page if it is not attached to the top element.
In previous versions of HALion Sonic (SE) (< 3.2) the maximum size of the macro page was limited to 595 x 390 pixels. Versions 3.2 and higher do not have this restiction. The macro page can be of any reasonable size.
If you export a Program as HALion Sonic SE Layer preset and the program structure does not comply with these requirements, HALion will warn you that the Layer preset will not be accepted by HALion Sonic (SE).
The following elements can be added freely to the program structure:
The following picture shows the instrument from above, with an additional bus and insert effect.
If you follow these guidelines, your instrument will be compatible with HALion Sonic (SE):
When you design your instrument in HALion, it is created as a Program and saved as VST3 Program preset. The final sound design is usually done in HALion Sonic. However, before you can load your instrument in HALion Sonic, you must export it as HALion Sonic SE Layer preset. The export in HALion Sonic SE format allows you to load and test your instrument in HALion Sonic SE.
The layout of HALion Sonic (SE)'s interface and features requires some specific MIDI modules and busses. When you load a Layer preset in HALion Sonic (SE), any missing MIDI modules, busses, etc. that are required for HALion Sonic (SE) to operate are added automatically. For example, if the Instrument-Bus was missing in the example above, HALion Sonic (SE) would add this bus when loading the Layer preset, because it is needed for the Inserts tab in HALion Sonic.
The following picture shows the program structure of the example instrument after these steps:
The Trigger Pads, two FlexPhrasers and a Program-Bus were added, because HALion Sonic (SE) requires them.
If you load a Program preset from HALion Sonic (SE) in HALion, do not export the Program preset as HALion Sonic SE Layer preset again. If you do so and load this preset in HALion Sonic (SE), the MIDI modules will be added again and the preset will not be compatible anymore. You must use the HS Edit mode instead. See Using HS Edit Mode for details.
Once your instrument is finished, the final sound design can start.
The exported HALion Sonic SE Layer preset usually serves as your init preset for doing the final sound design in HALion Sonic.
Doing the final sound design in HALion Sonic has the following advantages:
You could also do the final sound design in HALion Sonic SE. But, then you would not have access to HALion Sonic's Program and Inserts tab, which limits the sound design possibilities.
After the sound design, you can save your finished sound as HALion Sonic Program preset. In this step you should tag your presets in the MediaBay. See the MediaBay Guideline for more details.
It is recommended to save your sounds as Program presets rather than HALion Sonic SE Layer presets, because Steinberg users mainly use the Program filter when browsing for presets in the MediaBay.
In HALion in the Library Creator, if you choose to build your library as HALion Sonic SE library, all HALion Sonic presets are converted to HALion Sonic SE presets.
To correct settings in your instrument, choose one of the two following ways:
If you need to correct settings in the phase of testing your instrument in HALion Sonic (SE) and if you have not done any serious sound design or saved further presets yet:
If you need to correct settings in the phase of sound design and you already created HALion Sonic (SE) Program presets:
Load the HALion Sonic (SE) Program preset of your instrument. The HALion Sonic Edit Mode will be activated. This ensures that you cannot accidentally change the program structure that is required by HALion Sonic (SE).
Do not deactivate HS Edit mode, it cannot be activated manually.
The HALion Sonic Edit Mode can be switched off permanently with the corresponding setting on the Options page. When loading HALion Sonic (SE) Program presets, the HALion Sonic Edit Mode will only be activated if the setting on the Options page is turned on. See HALion Sonic Edit Mode for details.