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Topic: One last question before I buy GPO...

  1. #1

    Varying quality demo's

    I'm thinking about buying GPO and I've got just one question left...

    When I listen to the mp3 demo's on the Garritan site, I can hear quit some difference between te demo's. For instance, in the Grieg - Peer Gynt Suite (Morning) (amongst others) I don't like the violins: they sound unrealistic. At least not as good in other demo's. The sound itself is thin, too 'synthy' and some endings (note off commands) are very 'hard' (real 'keyboard-like').

    Now I wonder: is this due to 'not so good' programming by the artist (he didn't use all possibilities of GPO) or is this due to a bad choice of the used samples (you can choose different sounds for the violin ensemble, can't you?)? Or both...? Or do other artists make more use of EQ and other plugins? I'm asking this because in other demo's everything sounds ABSOLUTELY AWESOME!

    I didn't post this to insult someone who obviously put a lot of time in his project (this isn't meant personally at all!): I just want to know and find out what's possible with GPO and how you can get things done better.
    I'm thinking about buying GPO and I like to know what causes these differences in quality. If GPO will sound like it does in this demo 'out of the box' and you need a lot of extra stuff to make it sound better I don't know if it's something for me...
    When I say 'extra stuff' I mean hardware or plugins, not 'time'! I'm willing to put a lot of time in it (just as I've always done) to make things as real as it gets, so that's no problem.
    I'm also still not really sure how it works with GPO: if I want a string section: how many options do I have to get the sound I need...? Can I make worng choises and get bad results (like IMHO in this Grieg piece)? Is the included helpfull clear enough to enable me to make the right choices? Or do I just have to try everything? Questions, questions, questions... which will hopefully answered by aksing this 'varying quality demo' question.

    BTW I'm planning to use GPO with Sonar 4 Producer.

  2. #2

    Re: Varying quality demo's


    Demo quality is clearly determined by two factors: sample quality and programmer's skill. In the demo page you can have access to demos made by a wide variety of people with very different background, from professional producers to hobbysts like myself. This is one of the possitive things in Garritan's site, he don't setup a heavy filter on the demos he post on the page, so you can have a more approximate idea on how the library could sound in your hands.

    So, If you want to measure the top quality of this product, go on for the demos of the masters: Francesco Marchetti, Tom Hopkins, Haydn, Danielle, etc... But keep in mind that these people know very well what they're doing.


  3. #3

    Smile Re: Varying quality demo's

    Welcome to the forum, Hellogood!

    I agree with what Galvedro has said. As with anything, each demo is going to appeal to different people in different ways, just like anything else. Subjectivity is one of the greatest aspects of music.

    Here is what I have found, in case it is helpful. I am a hobbyist and have been using GPO for about 2 months now. I will never create anything of the quality of the pros here on the site. That being said, I have found that GPO is a very flexible product. I have not run into limitations with the samples, rather I have found that I am the limiting factor. The best thing about this forum is that you have people with years and years of experience who are willing to help out (sans attitude) with both technical, programming or musical issues.

    If I were you, I would listen to the demos with your requirements in mind. You may very well find the demos will meet your expectations. If you find something that falls short in your mind, post a topic and ask about it. This way you will be able to make a fully informed decision.

    Good luck!

    We are the music makers, we are the dreamers of dreams …
    24" 2.4 Ghz iMac, OSX 10.4.10, MOTU 828 MKII, 2 Glyph 250 Gig external drives, Logic 9, Finale 2008 GPO, JABB, Strad, Gro, Reason 4, EWQL Storm Drum, Adrenaline, Symphonic Choirs, SO Gold,All Arturia Synths, Many NI Synths, Spectrasonics Synths, KH Strings, VEPro on a Windows 7 4x 2.8 Ghz 12 gig of RAM

  4. #4

    One last question before I buy GPO...

    Thanks to a few (private) messages I know now GPO is what I've been looking for! I only got one question left...:

    Do I need the FULL version of Kontakt to get REALLY good results?

    Why I ask this? As I asked earlier it is my (humble) opinion that there is a lot of quality difference between various demo's (and songs posted on the forum). Now a lot of this has to do with using or not using the possibilites GPO offers. It's somehow a matter of how much time you devote to the music to get it just right.

    But there is one thing that still puzzles me: the not so good sounding demo's (BTW I absolutley really appreciate that the Garritan site not only gives us a few profession demo's, but also a lot of user-demo, so I can REALLY hear what things can sound like when I get my hands on GPO... ) are often not so good (IMHO) because the note off commands/the endings of the notes (specially the violins) are VERY sudden and hard and thus unrealistic.
    My question is: is this something you can handle/get rid off by editing the MIDI data (some sort of special CC, which some users find to much work to do) or is this maybe because the GOOD sounding demo's are made by people who own the FULL version of Kontakt and thus are able to edit the samples (by make the notes ring on a bit longer or stuff like that).

    I hope you understand what I'm trying to ask...

    If I need the full version of Kontakt to get REALLY professional results (like those GOOD demo's) I need to think about it a bit longer... because after buying GPO I won't have any money left... (not because GPO is expensive: I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw the low price!)

  5. #5

    Re: One last question before I buy GPO...

    You do not need the full version of Kontakt in order to get the full experience from GPO. I own the full version but still use the Kontakt Player for my GPO needs due to simplicity. I would only recommend the full version if you plan on complementing GPO with other sounds or if you want to access the programming of the samples.

    As to the note off commands. You can shape the note off envelopes with midi controller CC# 1. This way the note ends gradually instead of suddenly. You are right, what you get out of GPO correlates directly with how much work you put into the file.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    West Seneca, NY

    Thumbs up Re: One last question before I buy GPO...

    My answer to your question is no, you don't HAVE to have full kontakt to achieve professional results like what you have heard of the demos. Many of the demos were realized using the bundled kontakt player that comes with GPO. The bottom line is for the price this is by far the best purchase you'll make for your music compositions! You just cannot go wrong!
    By the way, nice to have you aboard and hope to hear your music soon!

  7. #7

    Re: Varying quality demo's

    Each demo is up there because it has something unique to offer, but obviously they are not without their problems. For example, if you're wondering about the quality of Ambience Reverb, then don't listen to my demo.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Orcas Island

    Re: One last question before I buy GPO...

    Thanks for coming to the forum.

    You asked "what causes these differences in quality" among the demos?

    There are over 300 demos (200 on the GPO site and over 100 more posted that need to be added). I intentionally put many user demos on the GPO demo page. We did not want to include just professionally-produced demos designed to create a favorable impression. Such examples could be misleading. Instead we thought it more honest to show demos in real world use by a variety of users.

    From hundreds of demos, of course one can focus on one particular demo that needs improvement. If you don't particularly like a demo, in this forum we do not invoke negative criticism by asserting something merely sounds 'synthy', but rather aim to help the user improve his demo and achieve a more realistic sound.
    What often happens is that a person submits a demo and improves on the next demo and progressively gets better. Th

    Nevertheless, all the demos all come from the same library. The "ABSOLUTELY AWESOME" ones and some of the "unrealistic" ones (in your opinion).

    If you had a real instrument and put it in the hands of several hundred different people, it will sound different in the hands of each person.
    There are so many proficiency levels, varying equipment, styles, approaches, etc. Skill is a very important factor (that's why mum always said the practice ).

    Sample libraries provide the sounds and tools to make better music. A musician can have the best instruments or the best samples but without knowledge to use them it is of little value. As I mentioned in another thread:

    Quote Originally Posted by Garritan
    Some think that it is only the sample library that will make music shine, but it is in the artist that has more to do with the music. GPO probably has the most expensive collection of orchestral instruments of any orchestral sample library ever recorded.... But having great samples is not enough - helping people become masters is what it is all about.

    If you put a Stradivari in the hands of a beginner it will not sound very good. And if you put an old pawn shop violin in the hands of a master, it will sound ever so sweet. This is why education and learning is just as, or more, important as the product.

    I think the following excerpt from the famous poem tells it all:
    The Master's Touch

    It was battered and scarred
    and the auctioneer thought it scarcely worth his while
    to waste much time on the Old Violin but he held it up with a smile.

    "What am I bid Goodfolks?" he cried. "Who'll start the bidding for me?"
    It was "a dollar... a dollar.... then two"... only two.
    "Two dollars and who'll make it three?"
    "Three dollars once - Three dollars twice - And going for three"
    But No!...

    From the room far back,
    a gray-haired man came forward and picked up the bow.
    And wiping the dirt from that old violin...
    and tightening the loosened strings...
    You know, He played a melody pure 'n sweet, as the carillon angels sing.

    Well, the music stopped,
    and the auctioneer in a voice that was quiet and low...
    Said: "What am I bid for the Old Violin?" And He held it up with the bow.
    "A thousand dollars! Who'll make it two?

    Two thousand! Who'll make it Three?"
    It was "three thousand once"... "three thousand twice"...
    and "Going for three!" said he.

    Well, the people stared...
    But some of them cried: "We do not quite understand!"
    "What changed its worth?"
    Swift came the reply... "It was the Touch of the Master's Hand."

    --Author Unknown
    It is my goal to provide the sounds, the tools AND the knowledge to help users become masters. The modern digital orchestrator can wear many hats - composer, arranger, orchestrator, mixing engineer, etc. and we all have something to learn (and to teach). The more information the better.

    With that in mind, we focus on providing information in the form of this forum, manuals, tutorials and materials to help users become better at their art. Not every demo will initially be a masterpeice, but will improve as one gains more knowledge and skill.

    Gary Garritan

  9. #9
    Moderator/Developer Brian2112's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Out of my Mind

    Re: One last question before I buy GPO...

    Hi Hellogood!

    Welcome to the forum! I hope I can offer another perspective here. As an owner of one of the $3000 orchestral libraries, I can tell you that some of the best sounding and most realistic demos I have heard have been with GPO (with no e.q. or processing except maybe a little reverb). Now, having never written for an entire orchestra before, I was overwhelmed by the big library, so I bought GPO both as a scratchpad, and a learning tool. I got all this and more! Because I can load all the instruments on one computer, it is much easier to learn and to compose. While other libraries are great sample libraries, GPO is actually an INSTRUMENT. The more time and effort you put into it, the more you will get out of it. The people of this forum, including Mr. Garritan himself have been so helpful in improving my music which in itself is more than worth the price, but you also get the greatest musical learning tool available. As your skills grow, you will find that GPO will handle anything that you throw at it. It is easy to use, sounds great, and offers you the ability to improve your skills. That is priceless. I couldn’t live without it.
    Hope this helps,


    P.S. I am using Sonar 4 PE and it Rocks!!!
    "So what if some parts of life are a crap shoot? Get out there and shoot the crap." -- Neil Peart
    Hint:1.6180339887498948482 Φ

  10. #10

    Re: One last question before I buy GPO...

    There are definitely ways to make GPO sound marvelous. In Danielle's hands, strings sound fabulous, every time. Unfortunately, in mine they sometimes sound like out-of-tune harmonicas layered with kazoos. So there's a definite learning curve--don't expect things to be terrific right out of the box. Paying close attention to Joseph Burrell's tutorials for voice writing and Danielle's on layering will help a lot. I think the whole package will be helped enormously when Overture 4 comes out with its humanizing feature (later this year, I'm told), for those of us who haven't gotten the knack of making strings sound good; at least that'll cut down on the "quantized" sound people sometimes mention. GPO is by no means easy to master, but if you're willing to put the work into it you can gets results indistinguishable from a real orchestra.

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