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Topic: GPO4 and great expectations...

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  1. #1

    GPO4 and great expectations...

    The general word "out there" is that GPO4 is a good, cheap program for making "Mockups." FOr listening, however, all the Garritan Personal Orchestra versions are said to be lousy.

    Finale 2011 came with GPO, so I did not need to invest in GPO4 for a few extra, unnecessary instruments, if this is generally true.

    This is my first post to this forum; not sure I am in the right spot. But I think so.

    Who can direct me to truly decent-sounding (I'm not even asking for remarkable) orchestral compositions sampled through GPO4 that sound convincing?

    The Garritan website has some decent-sounding examples. I wonder how many hours & extras it took to create these sounds. Almost no one is able to reproduce anything close to as convincing. And yet, most of us who paid extra for the samples really do expect that the result will be pleasing - pleasing to a non-musician.

    So, if you have a classically scored work that sounds good enough to play in public digitally, with no additional explanations, and it was created with a form of GPO, I'd like to hear it.

    I'm certain that I am not alone in this quest.

    Once I actually hear a score that sounds good, I will then want to put in the time to learn how to create such a thing.

    Peace to all in the new year!
    sylvester

  2. #2

    Re: GPO4 and great expectations...

    First of all welcome to the forum.

    I have to say I'm a little confused at your post. On the one hand you're saying there aren't any convincing demos out there but then you say there are some decent ones on the Garritan site.

    I'm also puzzled at the idea that you'll learn how to use the samples once you've heard something worth emulating. Why not just dig in and start learning for yourself?

    I'm a Garritan user and pretty much exclusively use Finale. I don't particularly worry about detailed realism although the more I experiment and fiddle with hidden articulations and hidden staff expressions, the better the results sound. The samples are what they are for now. I believe the company is working on producing higher quality libraries with higher sample rates and more layers, etc. One example of that is the Steinway they offer. So if you're wanting to go beyond what is currently capable I believe it's coming.

    On the other hand as you've pointed out people are able to get some very impressive results as it is. If you search the posts on the Garritan part of the forum you'll find most use DAWs to get a realistic sounding soundstage and tweak the daylights out of the midi data to resemble accurate phrasing, etc. Another point often overlooked in realistic sounding mockups is the orchestration itself. It either works or it doesn't. It's either "brown" or very colorful.

    So I submit that much work is needed to learn ANY sample library AND much work is needed to write music that works. Just my opinion of course.

    Steve Winkler

  3. #3

    Re: GPO4 and great expectations...

    Hi!
    Here is a bounce I made with GPO 4 of my own music.

    https://www.box.net/shared/k4ma19ni7f

    Everything is done in Logic 8 with GPO 4 only. The 1st recording was pretty good sounding, thanks especially to the legato option in GPO, this really makes a lot of difference. After that, of course, I did the volume tweaking and adding reverb.

    It took me about 5 days, maybe some 2 hours a day, to get this recording the way it is now.

    André
    You can listen to my music on: www.andrevanharen.com

  4. #4

    Re: GPO4 and great expectations...

    A nice composition, André.
    "Music is the shorthand of emotion." Leo Tolstoy

    Listen to me, tuning my triangle http://www.box.net/shared/ae822u6r3i

  5. #5
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    Re: GPO4 and great expectations...

    GPO is one of the easiest to get decent results without doing tons of tweaking. Sure you will need liberal use of the controllers such as CC1 (modulation) for shaping volume and tone and some light use of the other controllers. You will also need a decent reverb.

    If you are looking for even more realism, then you will need to pluck down thousands of dollars for the other higher end libraries. You will find with these libraries that it will take even more tweaking to get a decent sound out of them as you will need to learn each of the articulations, playback engines such as Kontakt or Play, plus you'll need a beefy system to playback these large samples.

    I've heard quite a few GPO mockups that were much better than the expensive libraries. It all comes down to the time spent and knowledge of the user.

    Jim

  6. #6

    Re: GPO4 and great expectations...

    Quote Originally Posted by Haydn View Post
    If you are looking for even more realism, then you will need to pluck down thousands of dollars for the other higher end libraries. You will find with these libraries that it will take even more tweaking to get a decent sound out of them as you will need to learn each of the articulations, playback engines such as Kontakt or Play, plus you'll need a beefy system to playback these large samples.
    Jim
    With all due respect, I think this is not so. Since Play was already mentioned, I would say that today its not about "plucking down thousands of dollars", but there is a specific product, containing full orchestra range roughly comparable to gpo4 instrument wise, but made with different goals in mind of course. Its different, I agree. But for the fairness - its about X3 the price of gpo, and roughly X20 the size of it. Mainly because more articulations are used, and notes chromatically sampled.
    Is it really difficult to handle? Not by today margins. Is it so much better? Only if you know what you are doing

  7. #7

    Re: GPO4 and great expectations...

    Quote Originally Posted by Vladzakr View Post
    With all due respect, I think this is not so. Since Play was already mentioned, I would say that today its not about "plucking down thousands of dollars", but there is a specific product, containing full orchestra range roughly comparable to gpo4 instrument wise, but made with different goals in mind of course. Its different, I agree. But for the fairness - its about X3 the price of gpo, and roughly X20 the size of it. Mainly because more articulations are used, and notes chromatically sampled.
    Is it really difficult to handle? Not by today margins. Is it so much better? Only if you know what you are doing
    I assume you mean the EW Gold that costs 445 dollars? Of course it's a good product but it's also 3 times as expensive and needs a far more powerful mac than GOP 4. These are very important factors for people who are on a low budget. I have a friend who bought it EW products and can hardly run it on his intel dual processor mac, while I can run a full orchestra like I used in the music demo I posted in this post, in GPO on my powerpc mac with 2 gb ram.

    André
    You can listen to my music on: www.andrevanharen.com

  8. #8

    Re: GPO4 and great expectations...

    Quote Originally Posted by AndreasvanHaren View Post
    I assume you mean the EW Gold that costs 445 dollars? Of course it's a good product but it's also 3 times as expensive and needs a far more powerful mac than GOP 4. These are very important factors for people who are on a low budget. I have a friend who bought it EW products and can hardly run it on his intel dual processor mac, while I can run a full orchestra like I used in the music demo I posted in this post, in GPO on my powerpc mac with 2 gb ram.

    André
    André makes an excellent point. In fact Garritan has always done a great job of offering the best quality possible for the price with products that work for those of us who simply cannot afford to bust our budgets on the highest-end computers available.

    Sylvester, I don't mean to sound snippy here, but I take exception to the characterization that GPO 4 is "lousy" for general listening. Yes, there is some technical know-how and investment of time required to get the most out of it, but I dare say that would be true of any orchestral library. I suspect the general word "out there" you referred to comes from people who either are expecting something more-or-less perfect out of the box, or lack the technical skills to use GPO 4 properly. In either case, I wouldn't put much stock in their opnions.

    I'm almost finished calibrating the expressions for a virtual orchestra I'm assembling with GPO 4. When I am, I'll render a symphony-in-progress I did with GPO 2 over the summer. As soon as I can get that rendering online, I'll post a link to it on this thread. Then you can listen for yourself and decide whether what you've heard "out there" about GPO 4 is true or not.

    Steve
    If you'd like to hear a couple of pieces I might actually finish someday, please visit my virtual concert hall.

  9. #9

    Re: GPO4 and great expectations...

    please allow me to answer from a different perspective...

    It is darned difficult to make the leap from mock-up to ultra-realistic rendering. It has something, but not everything, to do with the tools (sample libraries, host, etc.)

    There are some absolutely frighteningly realistic renderings posted here. Go through the member section and you'll quickly discover the folks that really understand how to get the most from GPO.

    There are also some less than stellar pieces, but what we can not know is whether or not they satisfied the objectives of the person that posted them.

    I've used GPO to mock-up pieces so that (a) I could hear them somewhere outside my mind, and (b) so that players would have an idea of what I was trying to accomplish. I have not yet made the effort to go from reasonable mock-up to finished rendering because I haven't needed to.

    I am, I hope, going to finally put together my demo reel this year. That means I have to make the leap. I expect that GPO and JABB will be part of my finished pieces, but no, I won't be trying to do the entire thing using only those two libraries.

    If I knew then what I know now I'd still buy GPO! It is, I think, the best entry level library available! And I think you can continue to use it as you add more sophisticated (read big and expensive<G>) libraries to your arsenal.

    Some say that it is lacking some important articulations. I say hooray, I don't have to pick through dozens of articulations... I'm still learning and I can more than make do with the included articulations.

    Some say that there are tuning problems, or some of the instruments aren't sampled chromatically. I've yet to run into tuning problems, and the lack of chromatic sampling means that the library is less expensive, and demands fewer resources from my computer.

    If I had to pick an issue that I'd "fix" it would be the Aria player. Nothing wrong with Aria, it works brilliantly actually, but it's one more tool I have to learn and maintain. I wish NI had been smart enough to take better care of Gary! They weren't, and from a business perspective it is easy to understand why Gary created his own player.

    GPO, and all the Garritan libraries for that matter, represent a well balanced, well thought out approach to sample libraries. They are not perfect, but then I've yet to come across a one size fits all library at any price point.

    Reasons to purchase, and use, GPO and other Garritan libraries:
    1) the cost is quite reasonable
    2) you will be 'encouraged' to play your parts into your host - which all by itself adds a lot of realism
    3) they are easy to learn
    4) they are not resource hogs
    5) integration with Finale is amazing
    6) they will continue to be useful when you've added new libraries to your tool set. I continue to be amazed at how nicely the GPO strings and woodwinds blend with the Kirk Hunter Diamond library. They also work nicely with the content that came with Kontakt4.

    I don't want to sound like a shill, but I remain quite happy with my Garritan purchases. The only disappointment thus far is the saxes in JABB - they still have a tendency to sound synth-y when played in an ensemble. I have heard demos where that effect is minimized, but I have not been able to get it to work for me.

    To that end, my reasons not to purchase a Garritan library:
    1) you already have all the bases covered, and you know your tools inside and out.

    Hmmm... that's all I have<G>!

    In fairness, I won't be buying the World Instruments library because I do have all the bases that I need covered by other products, some of which arguably sound better (that's personal taste, nothing more.) And I should probably amend that to say I won't be buying it today, since I might get it just for the instruments I don't have.

    To each his own, of course, or YMMV, but as a first or second comprehensive library I just don't see how GPO or JABB could ever be a bad choice.
    Bill Thompson
    Audio Enterprise
    KB3KJF

  10. #10

    Re: GPO4 and great expectations...

    Thanks, André for offering a link to your music, which made fun listening. Exactly what I would like to hear.

    I can hear the hard work you put into your score. At times, the synthetic qualities are very present - I guess that is how it is in 2011. At other times, there is a optimisitic, realistic quality that makes it better than just a "mock up" program. The music is able to come through.

    I'll continue this thread in a new box. I appreciate your willingness to share what you have learned. Many thanks sent from Sylvester.


    Quote Originally Posted by AndreasvanHaren View Post
    Hi!
    Here is a bounce I made with GPO 4 of my own music.

    https://www.box.net/shared/k4ma19ni7f

    Everything is done in Logic 8 with GPO 4 only. The 1st recording was pretty good sounding, thanks especially to the legato option in GPO, this really makes a lot of difference. After that, of course, I did the volume tweaking and adding reverb.

    It took me about 5 days, maybe some 2 hours a day, to get this recording the way it is now.

    André

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