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When Spitfire is your main libraries

Discussion in 'Tips, Tricks & Talk' started by Kim Arnesen, Mar 5, 2018.

  1. So I’ve been watching Verta’s masterclasses on template balancing with great interest and have learned a lot. But I wonder how much of it applies to working with Spitfire libraries when it comes to reverb and early reflections from a delay?

    Should I use just their close mics and follow. Verta’s process, or use all the mics and use have a very different approach?
  2. Use whatever mics you want. I wouldn't suggest using close mics and reverb - just blend the microphones to get desired "distance". The spitfire stuff is already in position, no panning needed - as it's physically creating it's own "haas effect" because it's hitting one mic sooner than the other one. You will need to balance your template though, and EQ won't hurt it - just don't go overboard.

    are you using full SSO? or just mostly spitfire
  3. #3 Kim Arnesen, Mar 5, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2018
    Thanks! Well, I have the full SSO except for the Symphonic Strings (I have layered their Chamber Strings with Albion One until now), so it has been full Spitfire though.

    But I just recently got the Adventure Brass, as I haven't been very happy with Spitfire's brass, so I'm gonna try to use both. And I've decided to get VSL's Appassionata Strings to layer with Adventure Strings and Soaring Strings. So I have the dry option also now.
  4. Spitfire symphonic brass can sound reasonably good, just takes a little extra effort to blend the microphones, and I actually blend the A6 and A2 patches on separate tracks with a different microphone blend in order to get a reasonable sound

    All that said, if you still want to use Adventure brass and yes, Mike's template balancing tutorial is relevant to getting Adventure brass to sit

    Also, SSS plus SCS is stupidly good, that's what I use

    I use that for a Divisi writing
    Kim Arnesen likes this.
  5. I'm gonna try Appassionata with Soaring/Adventure Strings, and I have a feeling it's not much used together so maybe the sound will be a bit unique.

    When you layer SSS with SCS, which one of them is the most prominent?
  6. Actually, I use the mic blends to make neither more prominent... SSS is darker and Fuller, but this effect is minimized by the way I mix the two libraries to sound extremely similar. The results is a full Lush but detailed string library with a wealth of articulations

    To make it even more ridiculous, I've got the chamber evos and the symphonic Evo, so you don't just have way more articulations then you would with soaring an adventure strings, but I can layer experimental evolving articulations.

    And this is particularly awesome because you can really make a note feel alive for instance, by using an SSS Evo to play a note in unison with and SCS sustained or legado

    Layering something like flautando and one of the harmonic Evo patches for a delicate bed in the upper register while you slammed spiccato dig with a regular spiccato on the cellos for instance... I can show you what they sound like together, and it definitely sounds good just layering to Legato patches together and humanizing one of them, feels more organic
    Kim Arnesen likes this.
  7. For Spitfire you can also adjust how wide the stereo pan is. The default is not very wide so I'd recommend adjusting that - especially for a more modern sound. I often pan the strings all the way and leave brass and woods in a bit more.
    Kim Arnesen likes this.
  8. Thanks, I guess it doesn't hurt to have SSS as well :) I haven't really understood this Evo thing yet, I need to hear and read more about it. Are you thinking of creating motion, which you can acchieve by playing one of the layered instruments in a pulsing way, or is it more experimental than that?
  9. just watch a walk through.

    I have the individual evo articulations loaded. They are orchestrated - not FX.
    ofcourse you *can* use effects with them, but you can just use the raw sound.

    you could try to create random rebowing whole holding out a note, or players randomly tremeloing in the middle of a sustain, but it won't be the same as directed humans. how do you get 2 players in a section to play harmonics with an ensemble library?

    both chamber evo and SSS evo are recorded in the same hall, same mic positions.

  10. around 2:40 or so he'll talk about it for a little and then you see the articulation list
  11. Sounds really beautiful, indeed.
  12. #12 Rohann van Rensburg, Mar 10, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2018
    I think it's just far easier to get a cohesive sound this way. Other composers make blended libraries still sound really damn good, it just takes a bit more mixing. The overall dynamic balance is what's important (getting your dynamics consistent across instruments). I only own a few of their libraries, but sections being recorded in the same space (i.e. Air Studios) tends to help with this a great deal, depending on how they themselves have engineered them. I know the Hollywood Orchestra bundle (minus woodwinds, why they recorded it the way they did is beyond me) blends quite well together, apparently.

    PS -- If I'm wrong, please tell me -- libraries are no cheap investment.
  13. I just wasted 2 days tweaking the SASS close mics, with no usable outcome. Listen to Kyle! As mentioned before, pick a string library that sounds good, maybe somewhat realistic, thats "easy" to work with and build your orchestra around it. In spatial terms: Mike's technique works fine on Perc, I had IMO more success with VSS2 + EQing to get those brass and WW in place.
    Kim Arnesen likes this.
  14. Why is this, do you think?

    I'm thinking, for a general non-textural template, "core" libraries are a better option (with textural, anything goes, as long as you can make it sound believable). Better with drier close mics (the amount of room changing in legato patches in EWHS drives me insane now), and good if recorded in the same hall.
  15. I like the Spitfire stuff OK. I think Mike uses the percussion. Since they’re in the back of the room, the roomyness helps with the Z-plane depth. (And I like a roomy sound like Phantom Menace.)

    I also use their brass layered with Sample Modelling. Which are complete opposites in sound quality but you can blend one way or another for a closer or farther sound. Just do the eq treatment he talks about in template balancing.

    I haven’t tried their strings but loads of people get good stuff from them. I have one of the atmospheric string libs (Evo? London Contemporary?) which is pretty dry. But I don’t use them much. (Have I ever? Hmm, not sure.)
  16. What's wrong with the EWHS?

    The SASS' close mics sole purpose is to support the deccas as spotmics (makes sense right?), but i had the illusion to use them as a drier version. I really like the scripting (esp. performance legato) and dynamic ranges, but the lack of "directness", even with the C mics on, is giving me a hard time creating a meaty/realistic sound. Will try EWHS (do i really need to make space for the 250 gb-ish?) or BS next. BB worked great with c mics only and deactivated release.
  17. I’ve been using Hollywood Strings. I’m a bit shocked how noisy the shorts are.

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/r3t2iyanr038rrt/noisy cello pizz.wav?dl=0

    They seem to work around that by setting the release time super-short, which isn’t great either. So I use the legatos sometimes and that’s about it. Though I often prefer the tone of 8dio strings, Hollywood can be a bit aggressive.
  18. The only issues I've had, really, are with legatos. The close-mic'd legatos sound dry until you do a faster run, during which they sound reverb-soaked. Mike pointed it out in the template balancing class and I hadn't noticed it before, but it's definitely there.

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