Programming strings with slow attack

edited November 22 in Composition and Production

Hi all, I am relatively new to the world of scoring and writing orchestral music. I have been trying to make covers, study my favourite scores etc and one of the things I get stuck with is programming legato parts.

So the crux of the problem is this. I start out on making melodies on piano and then transfer those ideas to strings. Whenever I have phrases in the melody with faster parts, the slow attack of the string patches just seems to not get triggered fast enough even if I change the attack to the highest possible (if there is an option).

How do you mitigate this. When I listened to programmed scores by other people, their melodies come of well defined. Is it articulations I need to look into better, do I need to program differently?

Apologies if this is a very vague question but i would appreciate your input. If there are any video resources on Youtube you can direct me towards for this specific issue then that would be great too.

Thanks for reading and helping out


  • Hey! It's a bit difficult to answer without knowing what DAW you're using and, more importantly, what libraries you're using. Different libraries differ a lot from one another so it's really hard to say.

    I saw a video on predelay (for logic users), I also saw one (Paul Thomson I think it was) where he combined legato patches with staccato patches so that you got both the clarity of when the note is struck as well as the beautiful long tail.

    I'd recommend Christian Henson's and Paul Thompson's individual youtube channels. They're immensely helpful and there's loads of them to go around. Good luck.

  • Angus
    Angus admin
    100 Answers 500 Comments 250 Likes Spitfire Employee

    Hi @Anshul,

    I would recommend using both Dynamics (CC1) and Expression (CC11) to shape your note attacks in the form of Crescendos.