3) How\'s the documentation? Does it tell you how to get the most out of the product or will we need another seperate manual? - I think the manual is great, fairly comprehensive. There are also online tutorials available for registered members. There is no pdf available of the manual though.
4) Is this a better platform than GS? Should I give up on Gigastudio and convert to Kontakt? - Don\'t really know the answer to this as I am not an experienced Giga user. I have heard some say that cause it functions as a VST that it doesnt perform as well as Giga. Others are reporting incredible note polphony/performance.
One thing I will say, I love the fact that it is a VST. I have the best of both worlds; the ability to perform midi editing on my samples, plus the ability to listen to my samples with eq and fx before the final mixdown.
Kontakt lists at $399 US in the United States. Check with your local dealer though, as they usually offer better pricing.
There is a \"lite\" version of Kontakt to be released within the next couple of months, which will contain East West libraries. This is called Kompakt, and it will be only 8 voice multitimbral. It loses a bit in functionality (filter types, and so on), but some would say it has a little bit of an easier to use user interface.
There is a crossgrade to Kontakt from Giga. You can get this for under $200 from many dealers. The list price from Native-Instruments is $229. This crossgrade is only good until the end of February per the form I downloaded from the NI site.
I plan on building an extra PC to use Kontakt on with my sequencer. Giga will stay on my older machine. You need a powerful machine (P4 2.0 GHz or higher) to get polyphony as high as GigaStudio 160 according to many posts I\'ve read on a couple different forums including Northernsounds.