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Best virtual strings?
Old 29th January 2007
  #1
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pigpen's Avatar
 

Best virtual strings?

I am need of a good collection of string sounds, esp cello and violin, that are at least usable....of course I know that none are dead money, but not all my clients can afford ot hire the pro cats....I can't spend thousands of bucks, but want to grab something I can actually use.

I have an HD Accel 2 setup on a Mac G5 if that helps.
Thanks ahead of time
Old 29th January 2007
  #2
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UnDeFiNeD's Avatar
 

I have had great results with the "edirol orchestral" VSTi suite
But it's gettin older nowadays, so I woudn't be surprised if there are much better collections now.
Old 29th January 2007
  #3
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NoVi's Avatar
vienna symphonic library, if you have some bucks to spend that is
Old 29th January 2007
  #4
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A440's Avatar
Vienna does it for me too..
Old 29th January 2007
  #5
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Why not try Synful Orchestra?

Instead of using sample-based memory hogs, why not try Synful Orchestra?
Its a treat and very simple to use, and you can get it to sound good.

But the point of using this software is that it is simple to get realistic articulation without too much sweat.

Try the demo?

http://www.synful.com/SynfulOrchestra.htm
Old 29th January 2007
  #6
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Pericles's Avatar
 

Garritan Personal Orchestra is $200 and used by a good number of pros. If you want to check out a bit of GPO, go to www.myspace.com/overworlddreams and click on the song First Movement Quartet. That is an unmixed version of an original classical piece I wrote. I played all the parts into Finale, converted the file to MIDI, then called it up in Cubase and assigned GPO as the VST instrument. It has oboe, viola, cello, and piano. No other effects are applied at all.

While not quite as good as Vienna, it's a heck of a lot less cash.
Old 30th January 2007
  #7
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theoryinmotion's Avatar
 

The best advice I ever got on finding a good string sound and other orchestral intruments was one I read in a book on midi orchestration.

It said for best results (ie most realistic sounding orchestra) to get 2 different orchestration soft synths.

I have Garritan Personal Orchestra and East West Silver Strings Orchestra.


The two both allow modulation and automation of the sounds and complement each other very well.

We have had excellent results using the two in parralel on projects.

All together the two cost me around $400 for the pair.
Old 30th January 2007
  #8
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bcgood's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theoryinmotion View Post
The best advice I ever got on finding a good string sound and other orchestral intruments was one I read in a book on midi orchestration.

It said for best results (ie most realistic sounding orchestra) to get 2 different orchestration soft synths.

I have Garritan Personal Orchestra and East West Silver Strings Orchestra.


The two both allow modulation and automation of the sounds and complement each other very well.

We have had excellent results using the two in parralel on projects.

All together the two cost me around $400 for the pair.
Do you have any samples from your work that you could post?

bcgood
Old 30th January 2007
  #9
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Matt Grondin's Avatar
 

East West Gold is pretty fantastic for the money.
Old 30th January 2007
  #10
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There's a new one that debuted at the Winter Namm... DVO or something? It ran on multiple computers and did divisi parts automatically to prevent basically laying overload, which sounds like hell and rather unlike an orchestra. The demos were pretty sweet. Can't wait to mess with it in person.

It was listed in the Winter Namm area. I don't think it's going to be a cheap setup, but it does it right, and if you need strings then it's a lot cheaper than a union quartet for a few days.
Old 30th January 2007
  #11
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audiomichael's Avatar
 

For the money, East West Quantum Leap Gold or Silver are really good. If $ isn't a factor than the Sonivox Symphonic Strings is the best. Vienna is great, but has a very 'classical' sound.
Old 30th January 2007
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tibbon View Post
There's a new one that debuted at the Winter Namm... DVO or something? It ran on multiple computers and did divisi parts automatically to prevent basically laying overload, which sounds like hell and rather unlike an orchestra. The demos were pretty sweet. Can't wait to mess with it in person.

It was listed in the Winter Namm area. I don't think it's going to be a cheap setup, but it does it right, and if you need strings then it's a lot cheaper than a union quartet for a few days.
That's DVZ by AudioImpressions. Although I think they haven't officially announced a price yet, I heard a rumour saying it's going to be US$ 7500. Also, according to the specs, to play the full orchestra, you'll need 5 (five!!!) dedicated dual core PCs. You better make some serious money with your music (or be filthy rich heh ) to justify this investment.

Here's some more info: http://www.audioimpressions.com/Prod...uirements.aspx
Old 30th January 2007
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoVi View Post
vienna symphonic library, if you have some bucks to spend that is
Absolutely, I did some orchestration for the documentary which was about The Roman Empire. In combination with tascam gigastudio,I 've done really nice and convincing job. Edirol orchestral is nice for some quick laying out the ground ideas, but I'm not so sure about the whole job.
Old 30th January 2007
  #14
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Although, the combination between Vienna and edirol orchestral or Atmosphere string sounds can be huge in dimension and sound. Try combining few sources of sounds(depending what the phrase is).
Old 30th January 2007
  #15
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mOjO FET's Avatar
 

http://www.soundsonline.com/EWQLSO-G...EW-160PRO.html

They have a 40 % discount which is a nice deal for what you get.

Listen to the demos!

You can also get the silver edition for around 200 bucks.

http://www.soundsonline.com/EWQLSO-S...EW-161PRO.html



Michael
Old 30th January 2007
  #16
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mOjO FET's Avatar
 

Just realized those are the expansion packs!

Here's the basic library.

http://www.soundsonline.com/EWQLSO-S...-161PROB1.html

Michael
Old 30th January 2007
  #17
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Tibbon's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by AuraCore View Post
That's DVZ by AudioImpressions. Although I think they haven't officially announced a price yet, I heard a rumour saying it's going to be US$ 7500. Also, according to the specs, to play the full orchestra, you'll need 5 (five!!!) dedicated dual core PCs. You better make some serious money with your music (or be filthy rich heh ) to justify this investment.

Here's some more info: http://www.audioimpressions.com/Prod...uirements.aspx
Yea. Like I said, not cheap, but it's cheaper than getting Union players to do it (although if the union had their way they would get paid the same even though you were using samples..)

And like they pointed out in the demo video, just the copying/scoring fees for a major score can be over 30K. Does seem that if they exports correctly what you hear to Finale or Syblius then it's worth every penny, but just like a PTHD system... it's only if you're actually making money and NEED it. If you NEED this product, then nothign seems better.
Old 30th January 2007
  #18
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AlexLakis's Avatar
 

Another vote for East-West. thumbsup
Old 30th January 2007
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoyJah View Post
Instead of using sample-based memory hogs, why not try Synful Orchestra?
Its a treat and very simple to use, and you can get it to sound good.

But the point of using this software is that it is simple to get realistic articulation without too much sweat.

Try the demo?

http://www.synful.com/SynfulOrchestra.htm
This is a great idea: algorithm- rather than sample-based orchestra instruments. Unfortunately, the sounds are not in the same league as their "memory hog" sample counterparts. When I tried it out a few months ago, my sense was that this could become quite good, but the technology wasn't mature, and the sounds in their current incarnation were flat and synthy. Still, the strings were better than the brass which surprised me because I figured it would be the other way around. It was sort of neat to try, and I would definately be interested in what this product becomes down the road when the aglorithms develop to more fully recreate the complexity and richness of real life. I also wish you all the luck if you are someone from the company that makes this thing which you sound like you are. It really is a great idea.
Old 30th January 2007
  #20
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pigpen's Avatar
 

Thank you thank you thank you....off I go to do some listening and make a decision. The East west is what I dealer advised as well.
We shall see what the ears and pocektbook tell me.
Old 30th January 2007
  #21
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theoryinmotion's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MattiMattMatt View Post
This is a great idea: algorithm- rather than sample-based orchestra instruments. Still, the strings were better than the brass which surprised me because I figured it would be the other way around.
Strange....I have yet to hear a soft synth emulate brass or woodwind instruments as realistic as they do strings. This seems to be the norm.... particularly when it concerns realistic articulation.
Old 1st February 2007
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattiMattMatt View Post
I also wish you all the luck if you are someone from the company that makes this thing which you sound like you are. It really is a great idea.
Hah! No, I am not anything but a happy user. This software is absolutely fine when in a pop/rock/soul - context. This is happily the context I am in these days...

But I would absolutely wish Synful the best of luck too...
A very good idea this software, but the company seems to be kind of small and without the (necessary?) marketing power some others have. Hope they will be able to continue to develop.
Old 1st February 2007
  #23
AB3
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Remember to think about whether you are allowed to transfer any licenses and what information you are required to put on any CDS. A lot of times the licensing requirements are not found out until after the purchase!

Vienna, for instance, does not allow it to be sold to anyone else and requires that credit be given to them on any CD that uses their samples.
Old 1st February 2007
  #24
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Windshore's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tibbon View Post
Yea. Like I said, not cheap, but it's cheaper than getting Union players to do it (although if the union had their way they would get paid the same even though you were using samples..)
Tibbon - you might be careful about dissing musicians (or their reps) on this forum. I'm not necessarily the biggest fan of the union, but just because technology happens to offer you a choice not to use a human doesn't mean your job won't be in the same precarious position in a decade or two. There are already programs, though primitive that can score, and "write".... While more and more "players" get into composing and producing because there's not many sessions,... and more and more work is done overseas,... all of this plus the fast pace of technology,.... there aren't many professionals who's job won't be at risk sometime soon....

apologies for getting off topic
Old 1st February 2007
  #25
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Windshore- You're totally right. I have a love/hate relationship with the unions. They are great when they are on your side, can be hard to work with in certain circumstances. Point in case is the situation that in many Broadway musicals that the score is for only a few musicians... due to the union agreements of min numbers of musicians there are often musicians just sitting there doing nothing on a session. The point being so that there would be no reason to replace musicians with electronic strings or whatever instead, which is good, just silly in implementation. Also I take slight issue with the doubling rules and such for union session musicians. I'm not going to charge someone double to double-track a guitar part, or if I play electric and acoustic guitar on the same session, but I see why they do similarly for union'd gigs.

But the unions mean well, and create an equitable working environment for musicians and make it a viable career. Overall good, just a pain some days. And i don't support replacing musicians with electronics when the capability is there to use them.

And the state of our jobs are already at risk I totally respect session musicians and their unions that help their jobs stay safe. I guess some days I just wish that WE had someone to watch our backs.
Old 1st February 2007
  #26
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macrae11's Avatar
 

Anyone use Miroslav Philharmonik? Have been thinking about purchasing it.

http://www.philharmonik.com/
Old 1st February 2007
  #27
AB3
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Yes - I think it is one of the best deals for the money. Love the french horn on it BTW. And many great sounds. And you do not need a USB key anymore!

In response to another post - remember that all those samples are made by humans who devoted their lives to their music. So humans are always an essential part.

Quote:
Originally Posted by macrae11 View Post
Anyone use Miroslav Philharmonik? Have been thinking about purchasing it.

http://www.philharmonik.com/
Old 1st February 2007
  #28
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u b k's Avatar
 

well i just listened to the demo's of every product linked on this page, and for the ones that are even remotely affordable, the east west puts the others to shame imho. it gets slightly machine-gunny at times but it has something the others lack: it sounds real, especially the ambience. $200 for the silver is a downright steal.

i did like the texture of synful, it seems like a very useful 2d palette to layer up with, especially for adding a lushness that the romplers lack, not unlike what a lex does vs. a real space.

anyway, i've added east west's fare to my shopping list. thanks for the tip!


gregoire
del
ubk
.
Old 1st February 2007
  #29
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cjogo's Avatar
My fav is still the Kurzweils--- $400-800 used --great strings !! It's not only the samples but, the engine that "produces" the string > that creates that quality. The Kurzweils are bargain --especially since we spent $2-3k for our units ...that are now $500
Old 1st February 2007
  #30
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ArcCirDude's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MattiMattMatt View Post
This is a great idea: algorithm- rather than sample-based orchestra instruments. Unfortunately, the sounds are not in the same league as their "memory hog" sample counterparts.
Hey Matt, have you checked this out yet? http://www.pianoteq.com/ Algorithmic piano. Best ever as far as both sound and playability (outside of my Steinway..), IMHO.

As far as strings go, I use the fully blown East West and I (obviously) think that they are the most realistic sounding. Strings (and any other instrument for that matter need to have a reverberant space in order to sound "real". VI dry recordings force you to use artificial reverb. Even Altiverb doesn't give you the impact that the East West technology gives you. In my most very humble opinion.
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