Do you know of any software out there that will allow me to play in different musical temperaments (e.g. Well temperament and Meantone temperament)? I'm especially interested in software that accepts MIDI input.
Logic Pro has built-in controls for using different temperaments. Check out the link below:
It allows you to either select a pre-configured tuning system, or customize your own. MAX/MSP is another solution, but if you don't have programming experience, using this as an option might be significantly more trouble than it's worth. However, you could
Here are some other links I found, but cannot personally vouch for:
http://www.cycling74.com/forums/topic.php?id=7392 (If you have MAX, you could use this file to convert MIDI input to specific frequencies).
http://emusician.com/tutorials/emusic_playing_cracks/ (article describing various software programs suited for alternate tunings)
Timidity supports playing just intonation very easily:
-Z file, --freq-table=file Cause the table of frequencies to be read from file. This is useful to define a tuning different from 12-equal temperament. If ``pure'' is specified, TiMid‐ ity++ plays in trial pure intonation. -Zpure[n(m)], --pure-intonation=[n(m)] Play in trial pure intonation by Key Signature meta-event in the MIDI file. You can specify the initial keysig by hand, in case the MIDI file does not contains the meta-event. Optionally, n is the number of key signature. In case of sharp, n is positive. In case of flat, n is negative. Valid values of n are in the interval from -7 to 7. In case of minor mode, you should put `m' character along with -Zpure option.
To make your own, arbitrary tunings, see this.
Midi actually has a 20-year old ratified specification extension just for this. Any synth that supports that extensions should support those temperaments (although you might need an appropriate midi interface too).
The wikipedia page for the extension page lists a number of soft-synths that support the extension.
- Denemo (music score editor. free.) supports a few temperaments.
- Some Synth plugins (vsti...) lets you choose the temperament. Ideal, if you want to play live with a midi keyboard. Edirol Orchestral was one, but I think it's discontinued.
Mutabor allows you to use arbitrary tunings and works on a couple of platforms. It accepts MIDI input from keyboards and files. On Mac I've had some trouble getting it set up, and the translation to English is not done yet, but it has great potential...
Pianoteq. You should really look at this physical-modeling piano virtual instrument plugin . Not only does it support all the historical temperaments, it models many kinds of harpsichords, fortepianos, pianos, and other instruments. It sounds excellent and is light on system requirements, and it's available for Mac, PC and Linux.
Alt-tuner is a midi effect for your Digital Audio Workstation, very powerful. You can sweep the whole spectrum of meantone (1/3 comma, 2/7 comma, 1/4 comma, 1/5 comma, 1/11 comma = 12-ET, 0 comma = pythagorean) and you can even do this with a foot pedal as you are playing, via midi learn. It also does well-temperament, any kind. It does just intonation with commatic shifts, called tapnotes. It does ADAPTIVE just intonation, which adjusts all the pitches very slightly (2-3¢) as you play, for a better sound than quarter-comma meantone, which has fifths flat by 5.5¢, and min 7ths and maj 9ths flat by 11¢.
You can also switch back and forth between all these tunings with foot pedals as you play - as to Monica Cellio's comment above - no need for mp3s, just play and listen!
Korg and Yamaha synths each support a fairly large number of different temperaments. Other makes may as well, these are just the ones I have owned. I'm surprised the companies don't advertise this feature.
According to wikipedia, "A microtuner or microtonal tuner is an electronic device or software program designed to modify and test the tuning of musical instruments (in particular synthesizers) with microtonal precision, allowing for the design and construction of microtonal scales and just intonation scales, and for tuning intervals that differ (or not) from those of common Western equal temperament." See:
"Hardware microtuners" listed there includes "ORIENTAL / WORLD SCALE MIDI CONVERTER", "FSU Dynamic Microtuning Box", and "H-Pi Instruments Tuning Box TBX1".
"Software microtuners" listed there includes "chelles et Modes (Mac & PC)", "alt-tuner", "L'il Miss' Scale Oven (Mac)", "microtuner Max/MSP object", "Scala (Windows, Linux, Mac)", "Tobybear MicroTuner VST plugin (Windows)". "Tune Smithy (Windows)", and "Mutabor".