Art Vista Orchestra Intonation System

The world's first real-time MIDI orchestra intonation system.


Automatic Real-Time Performance Intonation (ARPI)

When musicians harmonize, they play in consonance - their waveforms line up in phase with each other. It makes the music powerful and emotional as waveforms of harmonizing notes support and amplify each other. This comes natural to all musicians, because it is an inherent quality in all music.

Another quality is the musician's melodic intonation which emphasizes the directional quality of leading tones. Tension and release in Western music is emphasized when leading tones reaching for a resolution are given an exaggerated intonation towards the target note. None of this has been possible in computer generated music, until now. 

Sampled instruments and synthesizers deliver a fixed step-ladder tuning where no interval is consonant, and no note has any melodic direction. They are permanently tied into the Equal Temperament - an artificial compromise devised for fixed-tuning instruments such as pianos. This allows instruments to play in any key and with any chord progression, no matter how far the music travels from the initial key. The down side is that nothing is 100% in tune the way we expect from orchestral instruments.

No musician is able to intonate his instrument in Equal Temperament. Simply because it goes against everything that comes natural when creating music. The ear of a musician seeks consonance and every note has a direction in the harmonic context. A violinist who cannot tune his instrument in pure fifths would never be employed by any orchestra. Still every piece of music created with computers forces the music into the rigid grid of Equal Temperament where no fifth or fourth is pure - in tune, and no third is harmonizing. We get symphony orchestras tuned like electric organs, computer choir performances that are tuned like digital keyboards.

The Art Vista Orchestra Intonation System is a 16 channel MIDI intonation system, based on the patented ARPI technology (Automatic Real-Time Performance Intonation.) It is now available for Kontakt and the DAWs Cubase, Reaper, Studio One. The system intonates the music in real-time as if it was played by real musicians listening to each other, striving for consonance and melodic directionality.

In addition to harmonic and melodic intonation, the system offers optional scalable orchestra stretch which subtly and gradually stretches the orchestra's tuning towards the lowest and the highest octaves.

The Art Vista Orchestra Intonation System is subscription based ($39.00/year) and comes with a free full copy of Art Vista Back Beat Bass - Kontakt Edition (value $99.00.)


Orchestra Stretch

Scientific studies have found orchestra stretch to be real and that all experienced musicians have a tendency to apply stretched tuning unconsciously. Already in 1913, C. von Maltzew found that a mathematical octave generally was perceived as a Major Seventh - a psychoacoustic phenomenon resulting in an enlargement of the octave by the musician. Other studies confirming this phenomenon have been done by Stumpf and Meyer (1898), Ward (1954), Walliser (1969), Terhardt (1971), Sundberg and Lindqvist (1973), Dobbins and Cuddy (1982), Ohgushi (1983), Demany and Semal (1990), Hartmann (1993), Rosner (1999), Jussi Jaatinen (2019).

Jaatinen writes: "In conclusion, the stretched scale is natural for a human listener and should be used as a reference scale in tuning machines instead of the mathematical equal-tempered scale."

Source: Jaatinen , J , Pätynen , J & Alho , K 2019 , ' Octave stretching phenomenon with complex tones of orchestral instruments ' , Journal of the Acoustical Society of America , vol. 146 , no. 5 , pp. 3203-3214 .


How the intonation system works

The Art Vista INTONATOR VST3 is loaded onto a track in the DAW, and receives MIDI note information from multiple MIDI tracks or MIDI controllers. The MIDI data is analyzed in real-time, and intonation data is embedded in a user selected “transmitter note”. The transmitter note is received by the RECEIVER loaded in each Kontakt instance, where the intonation is set at the start of each note. The process is comparable to that of a real orchestra where individual instrumentalists listen to each other and intonate their instruments to resonate in consonance or adding an emotional quality by applying melodic intonation to leading tones. Below a schematic drawing of an eight channel setup:



Requirements and Compatibility

The Art Vista Orchestra Intonation System is currently available for the listed DAWs on PC and Native instrument's Kontakt only, but other future formats are possible.

Compatible DAWs and instruments may display the “ARPI” (Automatic Real-time Performance Intonation) logo on their product page. Kontakt instruments are compatible if they have two (2) free, accessible, script slots and the proprietary instrument script does not interfere with the intonation process. The system comes with a test template to make it easy to determine if an instrument is 100% compatible.

Art Vista also offers all developers the open source code to integrate the Pre-Script and RECEIVER in their instrument scripts to eliminate the need for user loaded scripts.


Description: Multi-channel intonation system.

Type of processing: MIDI.

Formats: VST3, Native Instruments KSP.

Number of channels: 16.

Continuous Controller: Available through host automation.

NRPN: 16321


PC with 64-bit Windows 7 or higher.

Native Instruments Kontakt 6 or higher.

Access to two (2) free script slots in each Kontakt instrument.

Supported DAWs: Cubase, Reaper, Studio One.

One MIDI note reserved for INTONATOR use in all channels.

Compatible instrument scripts in used instruments.



J.S. Bach, Violin Sonata No 2 in A minor, BWV 1003 - Fugue.

Recorded with "Chris Hein - Solo Violin" and intonated in real-time during MIDI playback.



Felix Mendelssohn, Violin Concerto in E minor, Op. 64

Recorded with "Chris Hein - Solo Violin" and live orchestra. Real-time MIDI intonation.



"Ack Värmeland du sköna" - Swedish traditional. Aka "Dear Old Stockholm" when

recorded and performed by Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Chet Baker, Stan Getz and others.

Here performed with Embertone's "Joshua Bell Violin" and the "Art Vista Back Beat Bass."

Both instruments are intonated live, in relation to each other, during the MIDI playback.



J.S. Bach's famous "Chaconne" from the Solo Partita for Violin in D minor.

Performed with "Chris Hein - Solo Violin" and intonated live during MIDI playback.



J.S. Bach Violin Sonata No 2 in A minor, BWv 1003 - Allegro.

Performed with "Chris Hein - Solo Violin" and intonated live during MIDI playback.