I've been listening to the EasWest/Quantum Leap Symphonic Orchestra demos, and what I've heard is absolutely amazing. But almost all of the demo pieces are big, bombastic, brassy productions. I'd love to know how this collection does with softer, more delicate material. How do the strings fare with slow, expressive lines? What would Barber's Adagio for Strings sound like? What would the opening of part 2 of Mahler's 8th sound like?
Any other styles of demos available? Any users with first hand experience?
A couple of months ago someone posted an adagio for strings demo. It sounded very nice. I think the library does good for the stuff you're talking about, but I think VSL does that a little bit better. Keep in mind, this is just an opinion. It all depends on your taste.
I have found that when combined with some elements of VSL, EWQLSO makes for some killer music when going away from the bombastic element. Sure, bombastic is fun but the whole point of orchestral in my opinion is to exhibit many different layers of the human experience emotionally.
I edited out a small excerpt of a VSL/EWQLSO session I was working on for a project done in the Howard Shore vein - here you go:
Thank you all for your replies. Some wonderful music there.
The idea of combining EWQLSO and VSL is tempting, but at this point, I can't afford both. I like the idea of 24 bit (EWQLSO). Is there a concern about VSL being 16 bit and the future usefulness of that format?
Some things I noticed in the demos - please tell me if there are ways around this: Often the ends of notes seemed to cut off abruptly. And, especially in the strings, the connections between notes in a melodic line didn't always sound completely natural, i.e., the end of one note might contain a subtle crescendo leading into the next note, and that next note would begin with the same attack envelope as the first note, etc. Do either of these libraries offer note-off or legato features, or other ways to perfect melodic lines?
EWQLSO/Kompakt has a round robin feature (for alternate notes - strike a note and it triggers one sample, strike it again and it triggers another) is really cool. Also, EWQLSO has already placed the orchestra in the proper seating arrangement, and the need for EQ or reverb isn't really necessary. I find it easier to get professional results from EWQLSO out of the box. When pressed for time under a no-holds-barred deadline, EWQLSO can be a lifesaver.
VSL offers a performance tool for legato phrasing. It takes a lot of the work out of typical expression programming one usually embarks upon in getting a somewhat believable passage articulated. However VSL is relatively dry in comparison to EWQLSO so a lot more work will need to be done to place VSL in the hall that's appropriate for the project you're doing, the seating arrangement is panned to the center so you may want to pan them to their right sections, and EQ may also need to be required. Things get trickier when blending VSL with other libraries that have release samples of the hall (like EWQLSO, Sam Horns etc.)
Either way plan on a learning curve to get the most out of either library. They both have their strong points and different approaches are necessary to get it to where both are doing what you want them to do.