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Collecting good pop/rock band libraries (Drums, Guitars, Elec. Bass)

ThomasNL

Thomas van der Burg
Hey guys and girls,

I have a clear overview of all the orchestral libraries out there but I actually have very little knowledge about the best and worst libraries for more pop/rock music styles.

Unleash your suggestions onto my humble soul!

Kind regards,
Thomas

ps. I did try to find the information first but couldn't find anything. Feel free to link a similar thread if there is one.
 

R. Soul

Senior Member
Modo is the best for bass IMO.
It's just so much more alive than all the sample libraries.

I don't have experience with it but Superior drummer 3 seems to be the go to for drums. Personally I quite like Addictive drummer 2 but feature for feature i don't think it's a match for SD3. It's a lot cheaper though.

Guitars: orange tree samples, Acousticsamples, Ilya Efimov and Amplesound are all good options.
 

matt_e

New Member
+1 to Modo Bass - it's great.

These are the other ones I have (and use regularly):

Drums - I've got a lot of mileage out of Toontrack's EZDrummer 2. The midi expansions are really helpful.

Keys - Toontrack's EZKeys.

Guitars
  • Amplesound AGTC (Fender Telecaster) and AGT (Taylor Acoustic) and AGM (Martin Acoustic).
  • Session Guitarist Strummed Acoustic 1 and 2 from Native Instruments
Amp Simulations - Amplitube 4 and Guitar Rig 5. I use these with my real guitars and also the Amplesound VI guitars.

GuitarPro - tablature software. You can import the tabs you download or write into the Amplesound guitars within your DAW.

I hope that helps. If you have any specific questions about these libraries/instruments just let me know.
 

DSmolken

Senior Member
Modo Bass is good indeed, though I somehow always end up using my own bass samples instead. For guitars, Ample stuff is nice and Orange Tree also has an excellent reputation.

Drums, it really depends what sound you want. I like the Drumdrops vintage-style kits a lot - they really can sound like drums sampled off old records. That Sound kits are great for things on the more pop or hip-hop influenced side of things where you're not really trying to sound like a live human drummer - very modern sounds, but not that many velocity layers. For a heavily processed hard rock sound, I don't know to be honest, that's a whole another world. Nashville Sampling Co drums also look great, though I haven't actually tried them.

Also, I know you said you have a good overview of orchestral stuff, but I also find dry strings with small sections and pop/jazz horns very useful. It's much harder to find the right sound with those than it is with a bass, and I say that as a bassist.
 

vms

Active Member
Keys: Addictive Keys, EZKeys studio grand, Alicia's Keys, Ivory Grand Pianos
Guitars: Prominy V-Metal + SC + Hummingbird, Ilya Efimov Nylon
Bass Guitars: Prominy SR5, Rickenbacker
Drums: EZdrummer2 + Progressive & Post-Rock expansions
 

fretti

Senior Member
Guitars
  • Amplesound AGTC (Fender Telecaster) and AGT (Taylor Acoustic) and AGM (Martin Acoustic).
  • Session Guitarist Strummed Acoustic 1 and 2 from Native Instruments
Have you already tried the new Electric Sunburst from the Session guitarist series?
Want to know if it could replace my own crappy guitar playing/recording with it? (even though I took lessons for about 6 years it still doesn't sound good:rofl:)
 

dzilizzi

Senior Member
For an easy to use rhythm guitar, I like UJamm's Virtual Guitarist. The keyswitches make it easy to change up the rhythm every measure if you want so it sounds close to a real guitarist.

You can't do lead on it though.
 

Saxer

Senior Member
I still like the MusicLab RealGuitars. The don't sound impressive naked but the Acoustic works well in a Mix and LPC and Strat are great through S-Gears Scuffham Amp.
 

Fleer

Feeding the Trolls
Piano: Wavesfactory Mercury (with great effects).
Guitar and bass: OrangeTreeSamples (everything)
 

matt_e

New Member
Have you already tried the new Electric Sunburst from the Session guitarist series?
Want to know if it could replace my own crappy guitar playing/recording with it? (even though I took lessons for about 6 years it still doesn't sound good:rofl:)

I haven't tried Electric Sunburst yet but I've watched the demos and I like what I see. It seems to be a big step above the Acoustic ones. I haven't bought it yet because I'm making more orchestral music these days and I'm saving up for a few libraries.

As for replacing crappy guitar playing (I can relate) they've been really effective and time-saving for me. I've found that sometimes these virtual guitars can carry a song, sometimes they can't - depends on the song. Sometimes they need to be mixed in with other instruments to support the song.

Even if you're a rusty guitarist like me, it's often worthwhile to record a couple of real guitar tracks to add some humanity to the song. The session guitarist VI's can be a bit too perfect, and even though they have the ability to humanize and offset, it's not quite the same as the imperfection of a human guitarist.

So, whether you're looking to save time me or if you're a crap guitarist like me, I can definitely say they've been a great addition to my collection of virtual instruments.
 

windyweekend

Active Member
This is very likely unhelpful, but I've become a strong believer in growing your own when you can. Orchestras are big, expensive things, but drum kits and guitars can be begged, borrowed, and stolen a lot easier. Upon my wife insisting it be thrown out last summer, I sampled my son's Walmart drum kit. Eight round robins, ultra deep sampled, and played with everything from hammers to saws for my now favorite 'scraped-vibrato' percussion section. After a bit of processing it sounds pretty damn good, and I can play some pretty awesome things with this now that I never could do (or it could do) in real life. Cost - $0.
 

DSmolken

Senior Member
This is very likely unhelpful, but I've become a strong believer in growing your own when you can. Orchestras are big, expensive things, but drum kits and guitars can be begged, borrowed, and stolen a lot easier.
This is very true - like I said, I do use my own basses a lot. Guitars, too, and fake subtractive synths made from bowed and wind instruments. Now also drums.
 
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ThomasNL

ThomasNL

Thomas van der Burg
Thread starter
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This is very true - like I said, I do use my own basses a lot. Guitars, too, and fake subtractive synths made from bowed and wind instruments. Now also drums.
That sounds awesome. Can you elaborate on the making fake subtractive synths from bowed and wind instruments? :D
 

DSmolken

Senior Member
That sounds awesome. Can you elaborate on the making fake subtractive synths from bowed and wind instruments? :D
Oh, it's really just a matter of looping the notes for infinite sustain, ignoring the attack portion of those notes, and only using the looped regions as oscillator waveforms. Then add typical synth filters, envelopes, LFOs. For unison, I like to use some higher samples transposed to the pitch I want, and of course add standard width and detune controls.

From my free instruments, String Cyborgs and Cowsynth do exactly this. Bear Sax, War Tuba and Weresax also include fake subtractive synths, in addition to "regular" versions of the instruments. They're all open source, so if you can understand SFZ opcodes, you could see exactly how they work, or I can help explain that stuff if you want to roll your own in Kontakt or HISE or whatever other format. The Bear Sax one is probably the best functionally.
 

windyweekend

Active Member
Oh, it's really just a matter of looping the notes for infinite sustain, ignoring the attack portion of those notes, and only using the looped regions as oscillator waveforms. Then add typical synth filters, envelopes, LFOs. For unison, I like to use some higher samples transposed to the pitch I want, and of course add standard width and detune controls.

From my free instruments, String Cyborgs and Cowsynth do exactly this. Bear Sax, War Tuba and Weresax also include fake subtractive synths, in addition to "regular" versions of the instruments. They're all open source, so if you can understand SFZ opcodes, you could see exactly how they work, or I can help explain that stuff if you want to roll your own in Kontakt or HISE or whatever other format. The Bear Sax one is probably the best functionally.
I've done the same thing putting orch sounds, wine glass recordings, and even a cat purring once for a horror film, through Guitar Rig. A lot of synth VIs come with an FX lite plugin as well exactly for this purpose so you can put your own sounds through them, and use their LFOs etc. Absynth works pretty well for this.
 

pderbidge

Senior Member
A lot of great suggestions here. My goto's so far are:

Bass- Ilya Efimov: Classic Bass and Modern Bass. If Mondo was around when I was looking for bass it looks like it might be all you need.

ACoustic Guitar- Ample Sound: Nylon Strings, Acoustic Samples:Sunburst, NI:Session Guitar 1&2 (I will be picking up Electric Sunburst)

Electric Guitar- Ample Sound G, Impact Soundworks Shreddage 2 or any of the Shreddage offerings.

Amp Sims- Le Pou is great for free and very much in line with commercial offerings. Bias Amp&FX is my got to but plan to get Scuffham S-gear. Ni Guitar Rig for more crazy effects.

Drums- Addictive Drums 2 and EZdrummer 2, Battery 4, Izotope Breaktweaker. Sample Logic Havoc (Heavyocity Damage would be similar). Soundiron Ape

Pianos- I use the pianos in Komplete mostly. I like EZkeys, but I don't like the sound of the piano as much as the others so if I use EZkeys to help me construct a piano part I end up replacing it with either NI's Giant (because it's so versatile) or if that doens't work I start trying out the others. Also I like some of the pianos in Sampletank 3 but ST3 doesn't always play well with Kontakt for me in Reaper so I try to stick to Kontakt.

Organs: NI's Vintage organs has some great stuff in it and so does UVI's retro organ suite.

Synths- If I had Omnisphere I'm sure that's all you'd need but I don't so here is what I use- Absynth, Massive, FM8, and Razor. Monark is great, I just haven't actually used it yet.

Strings: Lass (mostly the divisi sections and the First chairs)
Others: Output Rev,Output Signal, Output Analog Strings, Kontakt Factory Library- Mostly the sampled synths. (Starting to use Exhale- not sold yet on the whole vocal chops trend though so I'm trying to see how I can use it differently)

Edit: I forgot to add in a Solo String. Tina Guo is a must when on sale. Still searching for the rest. So far I like the sound of Embertone's new offerings as well as Cinesamples, Virharmonic and Chris Heins. But I think you said you were pretty well aware of string libraries so you probably have your own favorites:)

Horns- I haven't actually used them myself yet but I think NI's Session Horns pro looks like a great product for this. Also, as mentioned Sample Modeling stuff looks great for this as well, probably a little more work but as is usually the case probably a better payoff as well.

I'm finding that sampled acoustic guitars benefit greatly from some tape machine VST's and some saturation(dirt) as well as a little eq and reverb, of course. I also bounce them to mono. I find that a lot of the stereo effect built in, especially with NI's strummed acoustics gets phasey quite easily so I just bounce to mono, double the track pan left and right and create my own doubled effect or if I want a fake stereo effect if I use Plugin Alliance BX stereomaker, but you can also experiment doing this with delay for this as well, which I've done as well. BTW the bx stereomaker is on sale for $29 right now. Great plugin.
 
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vms

Active Member
I'm finding that sampled acoustic guitars benefit greatly from some tape machine VST's and some saturation(dirt) as well as a little eq and reverb, of course. I also bounce them to mono. I find that a lot of the stereo effect built in, especially with NI's strummed acoustics gets phasey quite easily so I just bounce to mono, double the track pan left and right and create my own doubled effect or if I want a fake stereo effect if I use Plugin Alliance BX stereomaker, but you can also experiment doing this with delay for this as well, which I've done as well. BTW the bx stereomaker is on sale for $29 right now. Great plugin.
Hey what vsti / fx did you use in "Wait Now (for me) Remix" ?
it sounds good BTW:thumbsup:
 
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