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Topic: Using more than one orchestral library

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  1. #1

    Using more than one orchestral library

    Hi

    Everywhere you can find somebody asking the question - which library should I get, GPO, EWQL, Miroslav, etc, etc.

    And almost all the time you get somebody answering - they are so cheap, get them all. OK, not really that cheap, but libraries are becomming very affordable (thanks Gary for starting it all) and many people have more than one library.

    If you have more than one library, please tell me how you use them. Why do you use different libraries? In what situation do you use GPO.

    I have GPO for more than a year now and (frankly my dear...) I am very happy with it for the kind of music I do - but as the price for the other libraries are tumbling down I am starting to wonder if I should get another one as well. Just, if I get another one I would not know what to do with it.

  2. #2
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    Re: Using more than one orchestral library

    I love GPO as it's the only orchestral library that you can build up ensembles from individual instruments with good, solid sounds. That and its real-time playability and comprehensiveness are its main strengths for me. I also have Miroslav because it has articulations and effects, such as sul ponticello strings that GPO doesn't have (yet) and has a warmer, more "passionate" sound in general. I also have EWQLSO Silver because on some projects I work with I just need something more "slick" sounding. I often take what I like best from each library and mix them together to get my own unique sound. I have acquired what I have through sales, group buys and/or crossgrades so, although not cheap, it has not been as expensive as it could have been.

    I think the more you work with these libraries the more you want to expand your vocabulary and at some point, you'll reach the limits of a single library. Of course, you could opt for VSL with its seventy-gazillion samples but for most of us, that's like buying a Ferrari to drive to the supermarket (unless your supermarket's on Rodeo Drive )

  3. #3

    Re: Using more than one orchestral library

    Thank you for that explanation. I can understand the argument of more articulations. But tell me, when you use another library because you may need another articulation how do you make sure that it is not obvious to the listener that it is a different library. What I mean is, if GPO plays the melodic strings and then for the sul ponticello you switch to a different library the difference in the sound would be noticeable - or not? I have had many thoughts about GPO's lack of proper arco strings as well.

    I find it difficult to define passionate or slick when it comes to choosing. I understand you point - it is just that I am not experienced enough to know when to choose which sound library.

    As you say, the more one works with them the more one will learn. Unfortunately there is no money back guarantee on any of those libraries to try them out for any long enough period. At the current price of EWQl's entry level library it might be worth it to try it, but at that entry level I am scared that I will not really get much extra in the line of articulations etc.

    I've already ventured into getting Truestrike to compliment my GPO. That choice was pretty easy because of the fairly limited percussions included with GPO, and truestrike is really a great library. On the other hand it gave me serious reservations because of the really poor and buggy Halion player. My first experience with a dongle on my computer resulted in multiple crashes for the first time in my life. That experience immediately ruled out miroslaf as an option.

    Anyway. My question was not about bugs and copy protection issues, but rather about music production. Thank you for your input.

  4. #4
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    Re: Using more than one orchestral library

    I sympathize with your dilemma and can only say that there is no really easy answer. As far as the articulation limitations of GPO go, I would think that GPOA, when it is released, will render that a moot issue. I find that if I know I will need, say, sul ponte strings, I will most likely go ahead and use the whole Miroslav string section. Otherwise, I would have to play with panning, reverb and EQ to get a proper fit. On the other hand, Miroslav does not have section string trills, so I would have to use GPO for those. The advantage that GPO, Miroslav and EWQLSO have is that they are sampled "in place" on the stage so there's not much moving around you have to do if you mix them.

    When I refered to "passionate" and "slick" I meant mainly initial aural impression. GPO has a rather neutral sound to it which makes it quite adaptable to many kinds of music if manipulated properly. Miroslav has a definite warmth to the playing (vibrato is a little more pronounced for one) and is more suited to emotionally charged music. It would be harder to mock up a relatively cool Debussy or Messaien piece than it would be to do Dvorak or Mahler. EWQLSO tends towards the "Hollywood film" sound which is to say - big and very detailed. Actually, Silver is quite adaptable as it lacks the release tails of its bigger siblings and allows it to more easily fit with GPO and Miroslav. And with the upcoming release of the Pro editions, it adds more features at a relatively low cost.

    The bottom line is that at the moment there is not one library that will fit the bill for all kinds of music you may ever want to make. I know that it's a real gamble investing in these non-returnable libraries but, at least for me, I have not found myself regretting the purchase of any of them.

  5. #5
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    Re: Using more than one orchestral library

    It was my hope that GPO would bring many people to orchestral sampling and that they would gravitate towards other libraries as well. My intentions were made clear before GPO was released (see this thread). I receive many letters from people who have started out with GPO and then went on to purchase other libraries. Here is an example of a letter I was happy to receive:
    The main reason for my email is to let you know how much we have gotten from GPO. It has opened up a powerful world of music production to us –enabling us to produce the classical works we need in an incredibly short time. I cannot say enough what a tremendous product and tool this is and will continue to be for us. Now ... to put this into context, I also want to say that we will be investing in VSL and perhaps Sonic Implants for many of the samples to be used in some of our “final productions”. This is a step we would never have taken without GPO.
    It was the goal of GPO to open up orchestral sampling to a broad array of people. Just think, before GPO the average price of an orchestral library was in the thousands. Now there are numerous orchestral libraries for several hundred dollars. And the offerings are fantastic - Mirsolav is excellent, as is the Kirk Hunter library, MOTU, and several others make great complements to GPO. There are many good free sounds as well and some bundled with various samplers. This is great for musicians and I hope the trend continues.

    Many use GPO with a variety of other libraries and from time to time you'll hear demos using GPO with other libraries. The more colors and tools the artist has the better. There are many uses for samples libraries and your choice of sounds depends largly upon what you are doing with it. Whether it be a mock-up before going to real orchestra, or learning orchestration, layering, sketching, composing, arranging, practice (music minus one) or a final production.

    The difficulty with getting sounds from different libraries to match is they they are recorded in different spaces and getting them to match can be a challenge.

    The more ambient orchestral libraries such as EWQLSO, Sonic Implants and Miroslav have a signature sound unique to the hall they were recorded in and the hall sound is integral to the samples. The less ambient libraries such as VSL, KH or GOS do not have as much of the space integral to the samples and allow more user control of the space.

    The upcoming 'Real Spaces' attempts to deal with this by having multi-positional impulses of the spaces where some of these sample libraries were recorded.

    We will offer reverb samples (impulses) of the following spaces where some of the libraries were recorded:


    • Benaroya Hall, Seattle (where EWQLSO was recorded).
    • Sonic Temple, Boston (where Sonic Implants Orchestra was recorded)
    • Dvorak Hall Rudolphiumm, Prague (where Miroslav was recorded).
      (Also Chan Centre, Janacek Hall, Cathedral, Harvard Chapel, the Village Vanguard Jazz Club, caves, and other ambient spaces)
    My goal is for user to be able to use these multi-positional impulses to allow better sonic compatibility among the libraries. In time we'll see how well this works.

    Gary Garritan

  6. #6

    Re: Using more than one orchestral library

    Quote Originally Posted by Garritan
    [*]Benaroya Hall, Seattle (where EWQLSO was recorded).
    Aha!!! Now it can be told!!! (I still have a Keyboard magazine where they were jumping through hoops not to reveal the hall EWQLSO was recorded in. Apparently that confidentially was part of the contract they made with the hall- I have no idea why.)

  7. #7
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    Re: Using more than one orchestral library

    Quote Originally Posted by FredProgGH
    Aha!!! Now it can be told!!! (I still have a Keyboard magazine where they were jumping through hoops not to reveal the hall EWQLSO was recorded in. Apparently that confidentially was part of the contract they made with the hall- I have no idea why.)
    Actually, that info leaked out sometime over the summer with no major repercussions - and no lives were lost in the process.

  8. #8

    Re: Using more than one orchestral library

    Quote Originally Posted by loogoo
    Actually, that info leaked out sometime over the summer with no major repercussions - and no lives were lost in the process.
    It had to happen eventually... does anyone know why it had to be so hush-hush in the first place??

    BTW releasing these abience impulses for blending purposes is an insanly cool idea IMO.

  9. #9
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    Re: Using more than one orchestral library

    Hi, I haven't had the luxury of playing with multiple libraries, and as I have GPO, my focus is to gather- incrementally- non-orchestral instruments so I will have at least one high quality sample of every instrument I want to use.

    But it would seem to me that motley collections of libraries would be best, because it would better emulate the ecclectic character of real life collaborations, where different people have diverse brands or grades of instruments, approaches, etc.

    Just speculation on my part.

    Regards,

  10. #10

    Re: Using more than one orchestral library

    Well, plus no single lib can cover every type of phrasing, mood, sound, etc. Even the mighty full VSL mega-hyper cube doesn't coverall the bases, and even a lib that feels weak overall will have something that it does better, or a way of playing it that works better in some given application. My old 8 bit Mirage is basically totally stone-age compared to new sample libraries but there's still a couple things it does that are better than anything else I have (like the layered trumpet/trombone patch) for certain things I do.

    The point is the more colors you have in your paint box the more open ended the pictures you can paint. The beauty of GPO is giving as wide a palette as it does for a single purchase at a great price. But the more you can add to it, the better off you'll be.

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