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Topic: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

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  1. #1

    Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    Hello, everyone.

    I do composition in what I'd guess you'd call the "romantic-epic-soundtrack" style, mostly with the goal of making decent video game soundtracks. Therefore, I'm looking for something that has powerful brass.

    Right now, I have Edirol Orchestral and EWQL Silver XP. I have always liked Edirol for its ease of use, but with few exceptions, the brass sounds terrible. I bought Silver in the hopes that I might eventually upgrade to Gold, but Silver has been a disappointment in that most of the instruments (especially the brass) lack an accented sustain articulation; you either have a staccato or an easing-into-the-note attack. Keyswitching is a nice concept, but Edirol will sound almost as good as Silver without adding that layer of complexity, and I really don't want to go through all my compositions and add keyswitches if I don't have to.

    I've been looking at Kirk Hunter, and from the demos I've heard, I like how the instruments sound strong by themselves, or with only two or three accompanying lines. I also like the price, but I'm hesitant as I don't have Kontakt and don't want to spend extra on that if I can avoid it.

    TL;DR: What's the best mid-price-range (<$800) sample library that has good brass? Is Gold enough of an improvement over Silver to justify purchasing it, and is it any easier to use? Is there a better choice?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2

    Re: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    Hi LeGardien,

    Welcome to Northernsounds.

    First, with regards to the Silver/Gold update:
    Make up your mind soon. Depending on when you bought Silver, you are eligible for an upgrade to the PLAY version of EWQLSO Gold for $200-300 (plus shipping and iLok). This offer runs out on Monday and prices go up.

    The are some Gold-specific demos on the product site that can give you an idea of what the brass can do.

    Second, after July 15, VSL is changing their upgrade and purchase plan. That's as much as I know and now I am completely speculating, but there's a possibility that Epic Horns will be available a la carte. This is probably a good investment (if the price is right).

    Third, Kirk Hunter stuff is good for that big ballsy sound. It takes a little programming to make it sound natural, but the effect is quite good.

    Fourth, here's a non-exhaustive list of libraries in addition to the above you might check out that are within your price point:

    Project SAM Brass (a staple)
    Sample Modeling's The Trumpet
    Wallander Instruments WIVI
    Westgate Studios Modular French Horn
    VSL SE and Brass I, II

    Fifth, no one library can do it all, and you're probably going to wind up mixing and matching.

    Best of luck,
    Reegs

  3. #3

    Re: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    Thanks for your reply.

    Wow, Gold is VERY tempting given that upgrade deal! I've looked at the comparison docs and I see that Gold does have a lot more articulations. I'm going to have to give it some thought, though, as I don't want to end up with something prohibitively complex that I can't get to sound good.

    I'm going to be getting several sample libraries in the not-too-distant future: another orchestral library, Ministry of Rock and Symphonic Choirs (or reasonable substitutes). As sample libraries aren't cheap, the best bang for the buck is my objective.

  4. #4

    Re: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    If you already own EW Silver that came with a Kompakt player, you can probably get full Kontakt for a cheaper upgrade price.
    The Kontakt3 library already has quite a bit of brass (from VSL), and then you could also get KirkHunter or numerous other libraries.

    Just something to consider.

  5. #5

    Re: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    I second the rec for the VSL Horns (formerly known as Epic Horns) -- it's probably the best library they've ever produced and is a must-have if you're writing any kind of epica. Project Sam stuff works well alongside it too.
    Mr. Kerry Muzzey

  6. #6

    Re: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    Quote Originally Posted by composernyc View Post
    I second the rec for the VSL Horns (formerly known as Epic Horns) -- it's probably the best library they've ever produced and is a must-have if you're writing any kind of epica. Project Sam stuff works well alongside it too.
    +1 for Epic horns. There's also Fanfare trumpets that is part VSL Special brass. Rob Elliot made a very impressive demo tittled Journey to Greatness. This is worth taking a minute to listen to . Those who liked Epic horns are gonna like this one too I'm sure.

    p.s. Damn, I'm listening to this as i right this and this is the kind of thing you really don't care if it's real or samples. It just sound right.

  7. #7

    Re: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    I would stay away from EWQLSO Brass. It's icky. Ther rest of the orchestra varies from very good to excellent, but the brass is sorely lacking.

    Epic Horns has been available ala carte for a number of years; it sounds very good, but is ONLY horns.

    Project SAM brass is the best value for the money. Very good sounds.

    Cheers.

  8. #8

    Re: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    I use Sonic Implants Symphonic Brass mostly.. it is excellent.. the only real weak spot in it is the trumpets and there is no solo tenor trombone. It's a bit above your price point though..

    I had bought Epic Horns previously to it but now find myself using the 6 horns bells up patch in Sonic Implants for the stuff I used Epic Horns for before, I find it's tone extremely convincing.

    The "Star Trek" fanfare is my acid-test for epic sounding horns:

    SI 6 horns bells up playing the Star Trek fanfare

  9. #9

    Re: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    I think I'm going to go with the Gold upgrade for now. The price is great, and at the absolute worst, I'll have ~30GB of samples to support my presently feeble arsenal. It's pretty difficult to make convincing stuff with $200-300 libraries.

    If that doesn't work out, I'll try one of the myriad options you guys have suggested. Thanks for your input.

    I'll try to show my gratitude by posting some samples in, hopefully, the not-too-distant future. Apologies if they sound like crap, as I'm still learning how to compose well.

  10. #10

    Re: Best sample library for Epic Brass?

    Quote Originally Posted by dalek3 View Post
    I use Sonic Implants Symphonic Brass mostly.. it is excellent.. the only real weak spot in it is the trumpets and there is no solo tenor trombone. It's a bit above your price point though..

    I had bought Epic Horns previously to it but now find myself using the 6 horns bells up patch in Sonic Implants for the stuff I used Epic Horns for before, I find it's tone extremely convincing.

    The "Star Trek" fanfare is my acid-test for epic sounding horns:

    SI 6 horns bells up playing the Star Trek fanfare
    Here's the SAM vers:

    http://www.jeffreyhayat.com/STFan.wav

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