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Topic: Big question about which libraries to buy next!

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  1. #1

    Big question about which libraries to buy next!

    Hi All

    I'm new to this forum, so first of all, Happy New Year! I'm looking forward to sharing in all the knowledge available here!

    I was drawn here, because I'm looking for some advice with regards to what sample library/libraries to buy next.

    To give you a brief background, I currently work with Cubase 5 and have Vienna Special Edition and EWQL 'Silk' as my libraries. I run them on a PC with an Intel i5 processor, Windows 7, 4GB RAM and 1.5TB hard drive.
    Although I enjoy working with Vienna SE, I do appreciate its limitations and am finding that I need more in the way of articulations and instruments.

    When I'm not composing/arranging, I do a lot of jazz playing, so I have been thinking about going down the jazz route with my next purchase. For my money, I have been considering the following libraries:
    WarpIV
    Fablesounds Broadway Lites
    Mojo Horns
    Sample Modeling Big Band

    I've read loads on each of these and each of them fit my budget. My question is, which one would provide most flexibility? Although I love the SM Big Band demos, they don't seem to have any clarinets and I really think I would need at least one! Broadway Lites would address this, but is it a bit too stylized?
    Regarding WarpIV - it appears to have been around for quite some time, but on their website I can't seem to find any system requirements. Does anyone know if is compatible with Windows 7 or Cubase 5? I have to say that of all the demos I heard, this is perhaps the most convincing sound, whilst also having all the instruments I need!
    Does anyone have any particular opinions on these sets? Can anyone suggest any other sets I may have missed? I'm not too smitten with the Garritan Jazz/Big Band library.


    The other thing I would like to do is extend my string collection. This is perhaps the biggest sticking point for me.
    Again, I have read huge amounts and seen countless demos showcasing all the latest collections available. However, nearly all of them seem to be too 'epic' for my taste. Although that can be thrilling, it isn't really the style that I compose and I would prefer sound sets that are more intimate/small-scale - e.g. for providing a 'cushion' for my jazz arrangements to sit on.
    Nonetheless, this is how I view the following libraries that have jumped out at me for their quality:

    EWQL Hollywood Strings - wonderful, rich sound, but perhaps not ideal for more small-scale work? I would appreciate any info advising me if it's possible to tweak things for a smaller sound frame. Many people also seem to have problems with the PLAY platform. I have never had any trouble with 'Silk', but then again, it's hardly as resource-intensive!
    VSL Orchestral Strings - probably most akin to the kind of sound I am looking for. However, I'm reluctant to get more of their stuff as I figure that it's going to be too costly. Undoubtedly the most adaptable way though, as I can mix and match any of their products.
    Cinematic Strings - nice sound, but possibly not as many articulations? Also, I'm doubtful of their ability to do intimate styling - seems to be more of the 'epic' stuff.
    LASS 2.0 - this seems to be the one that offers the most in terms of flexibility and affordability. It would seem to allow me to do more intimate stuff as well as 'epic' (should I need that!) It would also fit my budget (just!)
    Spitfire Audio 'Solo Strings' - superb sound from the demos I've heard, but reluctant to buy this as I would need to buy the full version of Kontakt also - pushes the bill up somewhat! I also don't want to be entirely limited to quartet writing.

    I realise that there are other libraries that I've missed out, but I've compiled a list of what I think offer the best value for money, in terms of sound quality, realism and ability to perform other styles of music other than 'Pirates of the Caribbean' copy-cat stuff. I also understand that in an ideal world I would probably have all of the products. But in these difficult economic times...

    Does anyone have any opinions/experiences?

    Thanks so much for your time, people!

    Rob

  2. #2

    Re: Big question about which libraries to buy next!

    From what you've talked about I want to suggest NI Session Strings Pro

    http://www.native-instruments.com/#/...n-strings-pro/

  3. #3

    Re: Big question about which libraries to buy next!

    Quote Originally Posted by matolen View Post
    From what you've talked about I want to suggest NI Session Strings Pro

    http://www.native-instruments.com/#/...n-strings-pro/
    That sounds like a good choice given the stated requirements. Might also be worth considering Kirk Hunter Concert Strings. These are quite expensive unless you catch one of Kirk's 75% off sales (one has just ended!). If you need to purchase now, you can select a subset, maybe the quarter divisions. These are a lot cheaper and might give the more scaled back sound you're looking for.

    http://www.kirkhunterstudios.com/pur...2_quarter.html

    Don't be misled by the Cinematic Strings official demos! These are mostly 'epic' and don't all do justice to the warm and potentially sophisticated sound of this library which can lend itself to jazz very well (in the right hands!).

    Regards,

    Graham

    www.soundclick.com/grahamkeitch

  4. #4

    Re: Big question about which libraries to buy next!

    Hey, just wanted to give a second vote for Kirk Hunter, especially for the price. Between the Concert, Chamber, and Solo Strings, I am able to mix and customize how much vibrato and character I want the strings to have, and they are recorded very dry and close so you can completely control whether the sound is lush and thick or intimate and close through your own reverb. Lots of bang for the buck!

    That being said, I am constantly tempted to drop the cash for LASS, and on the Samples board there is a very recent post about a new violin library that is coming out in February that also has a real character along the lines of LASS.

  5. #5

    Re: Big question about which libraries to buy next!

    Hi Folks!

    Thanks for all your suggestions.

    After much thought, I finally decided to go with LASS 2.0. I received it about 2 days ago, so I'm still finding my way around. So far though it seems to be doing just what I wanted! And with the divisi options, it's proving ideal for the intimate, jazzy stuff.

    Now to carry on looking for the brass/wind libraries! Think it will have to be WarpIV...

    R~

  6. #6

    Re: Big question about which libraries to buy next!

    Quote Originally Posted by musicalrob1 View Post
    Hi All

    I'm new to this forum, so first of all, Happy New Year! I'm looking forward to sharing in all the knowledge available here!

    I was drawn here, because I'm looking for some advice with regards to what sample library/libraries to buy next.

    To give you a brief background, I currently work with Cubase 5 and have Vienna Special Edition and EWQL 'Silk' as my libraries. I run them on a PC with an Intel i5 processor, Windows 7, 4GB RAM and 1.5TB hard drive.
    Although I enjoy working with Vienna SE, I do appreciate its limitations and am finding that I need more in the way of articulations and instruments.

    When I'm not composing/arranging, I do a lot of jazz playing, so I have been thinking about going down the jazz route with my next purchase. For my money, I have been considering the following libraries:
    WarpIV
    Fablesounds Broadway Lites
    Mojo Horns
    Sample Modeling Big Band

    I've read loads on each of these and each of them fit my budget. My question is, which one would provide most flexibility? Although I love the SM Big Band demos, they don't seem to have any clarinets and I really think I would need at least one! Broadway Lites would address this, but is it a bit too stylized?
    Regarding WarpIV - it appears to have been around for quite some time, but on their website I can't seem to find any system requirements. Does anyone know if is compatible with Windows 7 or Cubase 5? I have to say that of all the demos I heard, this is perhaps the most convincing sound, whilst also having all the instruments I need!
    Does anyone have any particular opinions on these sets? Can anyone suggest any other sets I may have missed? I'm not too smitten with the Garritan Jazz/Big Band library.


    The other thing I would like to do is extend my string collection. This is perhaps the biggest sticking point for me.
    Again, I have read huge amounts and seen countless demos showcasing all the latest collections available. However, nearly all of them seem to be too 'epic' for my taste. Although that can be thrilling, it isn't really the style that I compose and I would prefer sound sets that are more intimate/small-scale - e.g. for providing a 'cushion' for my jazz arrangements to sit on.
    Nonetheless, this is how I view the following libraries that have jumped out at me for their quality:

    EWQL Hollywood Strings - wonderful, rich sound, but perhaps not ideal for more small-scale work? I would appreciate any info advising me if it's possible to tweak things for a smaller sound frame. Many people also seem to have problems with the PLAY platform. I have never had any trouble with 'Silk', but then again, it's hardly as resource-intensive!
    VSL Orchestral Strings - probably most akin to the kind of sound I am looking for. However, I'm reluctant to get more of their stuff as I figure that it's going to be too costly. Undoubtedly the most adaptable way though, as I can mix and match any of their products.
    Cinematic Strings - nice sound, but possibly not as many articulations? Also, I'm doubtful of their ability to do intimate styling - seems to be more of the 'epic' stuff.
    LASS 2.0 - this seems to be the one that offers the most in terms of flexibility and affordability. It would seem to allow me to do more intimate stuff as well as 'epic' (should I need that!) It would also fit my budget (just!)
    Spitfire Audio 'Solo Strings' - superb sound from the demos I've heard, but reluctant to buy this as I would need to buy the full version of Kontakt also - pushes the bill up somewhat! I also don't want to be entirely limited to quartet writing.

    I realise that there are other libraries that I've missed out, but I've compiled a list of what I think offer the best value for money, in terms of sound quality, realism and ability to perform other styles of music other than 'Pirates of the Caribbean' copy-cat stuff. I also understand that in an ideal world I would probably have all of the products. But in these difficult economic times...

    Does anyone have any opinions/experiences?

    Thanks so much for your time, people!

    Rob
    Sorry, I haven't checked this forum in a while. WarpIV libraries work great on Windows and in Cubase (which is what I use too, except on a Mac) as long as you have the Kontakt player (works great in Kontakt 5 - which is what I use).

    Jeff Steinman

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