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2-Bus Hardware for Orchestral Mockups
Old 14th July 2015
  #1
Gear Head
 

2-Bus Hardware for Orchestral Mockups

I'm a composer who uses VSL, EWQL, and many other sample libraries. My mockups are pretty convincing, but they could use some extra life (after you've tasted a live orchestra playing your music it's hard to go back to samples). Any suggestions for analog units to strap onto my 2-bus? I'm thinking EQs and compressors, but I'm open to anything.

A recent sample of my work:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/elt08gd5bl...0Full.mp3?dl=0
Old 14th July 2015
  #2
Lives for gear
 
dhiltonlittle's Avatar
 

Bricasti M7.
Old 14th July 2015
  #3
I'm not really sure 2-bus processing is the way to make samples more realistic....reverb isn't a bad shout, but really it's in the playing/programming isn't it? As far as I recall, there isn't any outboard in abbey road st 1 - just the 88R, I think maybe a rack of GML pres and...that's about it?

Adding the stuff we'd use for rock (transformers + tubes etc) isn't really it.

Maybe try layering single live players (eg one violinist + one cellist) into a programmed section) might help?
Old 14th July 2015
  #4
Gear Head
 

That is a very good point. This isn't so much about the performance of the MIDI as it is the samples themselves. A saying that I've been using is "filling in the space between the 0's and 1's". At a certain point you can hear that they're digitally produced, and I'm thinking that something analog analog would fill in those spaces. Some people will play a recording into a room and record the mix in stereo in order to capture the reverb of the room. I think that serves a dual purpose of filling the 0's and 1's.

To your point, yes, bringing in a live player is a very effective technique, but I don't always have that luxury.
Old 14th July 2015
  #5
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DW FEARN stereo eq or comp
Old 16th July 2015
  #6
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mixerguy's Avatar
bricasti m7.

seriously.
Old 16th July 2015
  #7
Gear Head
 

I have Altiverb- is there that much of an improvement with the Bricasti? I listened to a shootout that was posted and I was hard-pressed to hear that much of an improvement.
Old 16th July 2015
  #8
Gear Maniac
 
Black Ninja's Avatar
 

"DW FEARN stereo eq or comp"

Exactly!
Man, I really love this stuff!!!
Old 16th July 2015
  #9
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bash's Avatar
 

Yea, gonna vote for quality stereo reverb. As someone who assists lots of orchestral recordings it's pretty much verboten to process the sound coming from stage. Spot mic'ing, OK, but hell no on compression.The hall is the "fifth Beatle" and the sound of the space serves to coalesce and mix the sound.
Old 16th July 2015
  #10
7 instances of altiverb.
Old 16th July 2015
  #11
Gear Maniac
 
Black Ninja's Avatar
 

I use EWQL and this library has articulations versions with 3 levels of room: near, mid (condutor spot) and "S"(mics on end of room). The "S" versions has a more realistic and beautiful reverb than any other reverb... Bricasti and Altiverb included...
Because is a real room interacting with real instruments that were sampled.
I think a tube eq like Fearn will help to bring more life, but a real orchestra is a real orchestra...
I like the waves REDD plugin for it sometimes...
Old 16th July 2015
  #12
Gear Maniac
 
Black Ninja's Avatar
 

Sometimes one library with more "divisis" help a lot the "life" and authenticity of arrangement...
AudioBro LA Strings is very nice for it but this one will need a good reverb...
Today, I'm in Love with Spitfire Strings!
Old 16th July 2015
  #13
Manley Passive EQ.
As for Bricasti M7 or older Lexicon 480, those do not go on the 2-bus
Old 17th July 2015
  #14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baddo View Post
Manley Passive EQ.
As for Bricasti M7 or older Lexicon 480, those do not go on the 2-bus
I don't think anyone is suggesting they do.

It's more like "2-buss processing isn't the solution, but this might be".
Old 17th July 2015
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prockamaniac View Post
I have Altiverb- is there that much of an improvement with the Bricasti? I listened to a shootout that was posted and I was hard-pressed to hear that much of an improvement.
I'm also an altiverb fan, but I haven't done any comparisons. I genuinely don't know, apart from the whole layering in live players and working on articulations in programming, what else there is for "more real". I don't think it's stereo buss processing though.

Do you layer different libraries? That's a technique that can be effective....again more texture and variation in the samples, glued together with a global verb...
Old 17th July 2015
  #16
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
I don't think anyone is suggesting they do.

It's more like "2-buss processing isn't the solution, but this might be".
I know, I was being sardonic.

On a more supportive note though. Extensive automation and riding of parameters like modwheel dynamics, breath, expression, coupled with appropriate hi-pass filtering will get you a lot closer to the "real" thing.

Reverb helps a lot in rhythmical parts, but less on hanging chords where texture is more important than space.

Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
Do you layer different libraries? That's a technique that can be effective....again more texture and variation in the samples, glued together with a global verb...
This is spot on, layering a close-miked library with a decca or more ambient library instead of just using reverb for space works wonderfully, it adds density and textural variation, while the close mics help with articulation.

Last edited by Baddo; 17th July 2015 at 02:27 PM..
Old 17th July 2015
  #17
Gear Head
 

I do layer (I didn't in the track that I posted earlier), and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes it makes the sound more "rich", but not "bigger". And "big" to me means a real orchestra playing very loud- it's something that's probably very difficult to replicate on a computer, but still, it's the ideal for which I am aiming. Also, I used to play double bass, so my perception of what is supposed to sound/feel like is probably askew from reality. But again- that's my goal.

I think you all are giving me some good ideas about how to use and mix my samples differently. VSL is dry, but you can use a variety of reverbs in a variety of ways. I can try and emulate various micing positions per each instrument. I could also just layer VSL with Spitfire, I think they might complement eachother....and here I was, I thought I was done buying libraries...

But to address the hardware solutions: how would the Massive Passive compare to the Fearn? Is the Fearn worth twice the price? Are they two completely different things, or is the Fearn kind of the same thing but significantly better?
Old 17th July 2015
  #18
Gear Maniac
 
Tommyswami's Avatar
For dimension I would try the hammer Eq and nail compressor . I've ran tracks through them afterwards and they seem to take on a cool life of their own in a very human way .
Old 20th July 2015
  #19
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If you're using samples, the first best thing you could do imo is to start using stuff like 8dio, Spitfire, Orchestral Tools. These are 2 générations ahead of your old VSL samples, and will give you better sounding full mixes (imo).

Then a nice HW stereo eq for adding some "air". And why not a HW comp such as an Obsidian or SSL?
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