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X-Bassist

Senior Member
right here: http://www.soundsonline.com/hollywood-choirs

Scroll down and select, "Watch the Walkthrough"

Nick almost always does this for their libraries.

I really like Nicks walkthroughs, thanks for the link. He does actually play the instrument, which I appreciate.

But quotes like "The sound quality and dynamics, they are just in another league" (@4:26 in the walkthrough) sound like a paid quote. Which I suppose it is in a way. I understand wanting to sell the product you put so much work into. But I don't think I've ever heard this kind of used car talk from a Mike Greene or DJ walkthrough. Perhaps they are just a bit more modest, but that's why it comes across as sincere.

I suppose this is just nit-picking, apologies... Or is it Nick-picking?... I'll stop. Thanks again.
 

Quantum Leap

nickphoenix.com
I stumbled upon this thread and have a couple things to say. Since the beginning of virtual instruments there has been a ton of misinformation floating around about libraries. Remember all the guys that insisted GPO was so much better than EWQLSO? GG wasn’t even present at the GPO recordings. He bought bits and pieces from people. It was a con, but it worked for a while. Over a year. Then there was the Cinebrass 1 day recording that was so much better than Hollywood Brass until.... wait for it.... it wasn’t. The list goes on and on. Vienna started the whole legato thing and everyone just jumped on the band wagon and acted like they invented true legato. VSL didn’t get enough respect for what they did. From me either. I was too busy competing and I thought they had made a mistake with the sound.

Back to Hollywood Choirs

Sound- This might be the only choir library without any noise reduction. That makes a huge difference. We did some things equipment and money wise that goes way beyond what our competition has done with maybe one exception. Guys, most of the choir libraries don’t sound that great. Some do sound great. Sometimes it seems that some of you simply can’t hear the difference between a bad sounding library like that old Soundiron one that everyone loved and one of 8 Dio’s newer ones that sound good. I don’t know what to say about that. Some of this stuff has weird imaging, tons of noise reduction, tunnel sound, very little dynamics, vibrato that’s fighting itself, slow attacks etc.. That’s why I make a point about the sound. It’s an attempt to highlight a feature. It’s not used car talk. The best equipment available, great hall and singers and a great engineer with proper dynamics recorded pays off. If we use Shawn Murphy, guess what? It might be the best sounding..... Hollywood Choirs tries to do one thing better than everyone else. And that’s a hyper dynamic, word building, great sounding choir. It won’t sound great in every Acapella unless you really master WordBuilder, but in a piece of music it just works with no effort. And it has no equal in that respect.

Legato-wise this library is poor. We just did a couple quick things as an add on. But, in my experience, the word builder makes the library sound very real and connected. It lends a lot more realism than legato patches in most instances. Unless you just want a legato vowel sound, then there are much better options out there.

Staccato wise this library is poor. We chose not to focus on that at all. You can however use WordBuilder and play staccato and it sounds fine unless you want hyper aggressive and short stuff. Then your fkd.

If you dismiss the word building as a gimmick you are really missing out. Most choral music will greatly benefit from this feature. Because you have control over everything including dynamics and timing, wordbuilding is superior to prerecorded phrases or words. —- That is most of the time. If you base your composition off the feel and timing of a prerecorded phrase, it will probably sound great.

If you can only have one choir library, what do you choose?

The guy that started this thread is an a$$. Why? He accused us of buying reviews. F that guy. He smugly says we are lost in some time warp or some $hit. The internet is great until people with miniature John thomas’ Decide they are going to vomit over people that deserve a bit of respect. He didn’t quite get it. That’s fine. It will happen, but he should have spent the time that he took to make that disrespectful video on learning the product.

You can say whatever you want about me, but I have contributed a lot to the composer community. I love you guys and what we do. Do you think I needed to make this choir library. And share it? Nope. I wanted to complete my 20 year wordbuilding journey with something I could be proud of. Remember Voices Of The Apocalypse? Some of you speak like we are some kind of charlatans. It’s ridiculous. We made the most popular by a mile orchestral library ever - EWQLSO. People really liked and used this library for over a decade, some still use it. We made some of the most popular and deep ethnic products ever - Silk, Ra. We started the trend and made some great and hugely successful epic percussion libraries - SD 1-3. We made what was the best piano library at the time and is still great QL Pianos. Symphonic Choirs was massively successful and popular library in spite of its word building flaws. Virtual Instrument of the year for a reason. Also a trend setter. We made Hollywood Orchestra with the best talent out there including Sean Murphy and Thomas Bergersen. We spared no expense or effort, and in my opinion that library is the best complete orchestra there is to this day, along with Spitfire probably. We also made the best reverb for film composers there is - Spaces 2. You can’t dismiss all that when you talk about us. Thanks to everyone else who has been fair minded and reasonable.
 
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Gerbil

Senior Member
I think so much could be resolved by just being more transparent in the advertising. If it was crystal clear that staccato samples and playable legatos were not the primary focus of the library then maybe the reviews would be kinder as the library would have been purchased by people knowing what to expect. Some companies like Imperfect Samples and Musical Sampling make it clear what you can and cannot expect. Others like 8dio and Spitfire have often touted their products as being the only thing you'll need so it's little wonder people are pissed off when they discover it's not.

All that said, I have zero issue with Eastwest products, enjoy using them all and and grateful that you, Nick, had the vision and tenacity to see these things through to fruition so this isn't a dig at your work; just an observation.
 

Parsifal666

I don't even own a DAW, I'm just a troll.
I'm certainly interested in Hollywood Choirs, but (with no intention of a backhanded compliment) I've perfected my workflow and output with EWSCP so thoroughly that I have a hard time rationalizing yet another choir library (I have to give it to Strezov for being awfully tempting too). As far as that old Soundiron...do you mean Requiem? I have respect for that library, the updates in particular have been nice.
 

thov72

Senior Membr
The guy that started this thread is an a$$. Why? He accused us of buying reviews. F that guy

very kind replies for a not so kind post. Wondering if the sh!tstorm will come....but, Sir, your post is an open invitation to all EWQL haters to join the drama club.
I don´t use your products, just because I use others (that are imho just as good). Might be using some of your vi ´s someday, so I´d say I´m not biased. But man, please read Hans´ posts to get a feeling how someone in your position should behave around here.
 

X-Bassist

Senior Member
I stumbled upon this thread and have a couple things to say. Since the beginning of virtual instruments there has been a ton of misinformation floating around about libraries. Remember all the guys that insisted GPO was so much better than EWQLSO? GG wasn’t even present at the GPO recordings. He bought bits and pieces from people. It was a con, but it worked for a while. Over a year. Then there was the Cinebrass 1 day recording that was so much better than Hollywood Brass until.... wait for it.... it wasn’t. The list goes on and on. Vienna started the whole legato thing and everyone just jumped on the band wagon and acted like they invented true legato. VSL didn’t get enough respect for what they did. From me either. I was too busy competing and I thought they had made a mistake with the sound.

Back to Hollywood Choirs

Sound- This might be the only choir library without any noise reduction. That makes a huge difference. We did some things equipment and money wise that goes way beyond what our competition has done with maybe one exception. Guys, most of the choir libraries don’t sound that great. Some do sound great. Sometimes it seems that some of you simply can’t hear the difference between a bad sounding library like that old Soundiron one that everyone loved and one of 8 Dio’s newer ones that sound good. I don’t know what to say about that. Some of this stuff has weird imaging, tons of noise reduction, tunnel sound, very little dynamics, vibrato that’s fighting itself, slow attacks etc.. That’s why I make a point about the sound. It’s an attempt to highlight a feature. It’s not used car talk. The best equipment available, great hall and singers and a great engineer with proper dynamics recorded pays off. If we use Shawn Murphy, guess what? It might be the best sounding..... Hollywood Choirs tries to do one thing better than everyone else. And that’s a hyper dynamic, word building, great sounding choir. It won’t sound great in every Acapella unless you really master WordBuilder, but in a piece of music it just works with no effort. And it has no equal in that respect.

Legato-wise this library is poor. We just did a couple quick things as an add on. But, in my experience, the word builder makes the library sound very real and connected. It lends a lot more realism than legato patches in most instances. Unless you just want a legato vowel sound, then there are much better options out there.

Staccato wise this library is poor. We chose not to focus on that at all. You can however use WordBuilder and play staccato and it sounds fine unless you want hyper aggressive and short stuff. Then your fkd.

If you dismiss the word building as a gimmick you are really missing out. Most choral music will greatly benefit from this feature. Because you have control over everything including dynamics and timing, wordbuilding is superior to prerecorded phrases or words. —- That is most of the time. If you base your composition off the feel and timing of a prerecorded phrase, it will probably sound great.

If you can only have one choir library, what do you choose?

The guy that started this thread is an a$$. Why? He accused us of buying reviews. F that guy. He smugly says we are lost in some time warp or some $hit. The internet is great until people with miniature John thomas’ Decide they are going to vomit over people that deserve a bit of respect. He didn’t quite get it. That’s fine. It will happen, but he should have spent the time that he took to make that disrespectful video on learning the product.

You can say whatever you want about me, but I have contributed a lot to the composer community. I love you guys and what we do. Do you think I needed to make this choir library. And share it? Nope. I wanted to complete my 20 year wordbuilding journey with something I could be proud of. Remember Voices Of The Apocalypse? Some of you speak like we are some kind of charlatans. It’s ridiculous. We made the most popular by a mile orchestral library ever - EWQLSO. People really liked and used this library for over a decade, some still use it. We made some of the most popular and deep ethnic products ever - Silk, Ra. We started the trend and made some great and hugely successful epic percussion libraries - SD 1-3. We made what was the best piano library at the time and is still great QL Pianos. Symphonic Choirs was massively successful and popular library in spite of its word building flaws. Virtual Instrument of the year for a reason. Also a trend setter. We made Hollywood Orchestra with the best talent out there including Sean Murphy and Thomas Bergersen. We spared no expense or effort, and in my opinion that library is the best complete orchestra there is to this day, along with Spitfire probably. We also made the best reverb for film composers there is - Spaces 2. You can’t dismiss all that when you talk about us. Thanks to everyone else who has been fair minded and reasonable.

Thank you for the response Nick. East West does have some of the best recorded samples I know of. As a recording engineer I can hear the quality of the mics and gear you used, and the choice of players seems top notch as well.

So my question is where is Play Pro? Having such great samples without any way of making your own patches, without keyswitch patches that have many articulations, or a way to stack or layer articulations without multiple instances (see videos of Impact Soundworks Ventus or OT Capsule or Project Sam...), makes East West seem... forgive me... outdated by comparison for a working composer.

Seriously consider revamping Play. Even if it’s not Play Pro, make some more keyswitch patches, ensemble patches, patches that try combining things or allow us to get to all the articulations better. Have a CC assignment section, allow composers to customized how the patches are used and controlled, even if the layout can’t be changed. Consider how to best make the great samples you already have, shine. Check for any pitch or programming issues.

This would revamp every library. Yes, it should be a free upgrade, but it would bring in new customers to libraries that just deserve a little more respect and apprecition. Getting the samples right is where many samples libraries fall short, yet you have this difficult stage covered. In some ways it is the player and the patches that are holding these libraries back.

The Hollywood library could use this, SD3, Silk, Ra, even the new Hollywood Choirs would all benifit with a great player update.

Thanks for listening and putting so much work into these samples, it does make a huge difference.

-XB
 
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StatKsn

Active Member
IIRC Nick had made clear that HC's focus is wordbuilding/sustains playability and not much about legato in this forum or elsewhere. So I can feel his frustration. Furthermore, I believe he has no control over EastWest's advertising practice or the development of Play Pro (which I suspect is a vaporware of the century and they aren't serious about it).

It is however pretty normal for a library to be compared (both technical/peformance-wise and sound-wise) with current peers, especially considering that HC was advertised as the choir product to beat all the competition. The problem is "good sound" is purely subjective and the mainstream definition of that can even change from time to time. It is inevitable to get some criticism from those doesn't share the same concept of good choirs library as Nick. Some may think HC's sound is too clean and lacks punch compared to "dirty" Soundiron libs (I have to confess that I liked them very much). Dynamics range however is clearly the feat HC does better than most peers, and that and the pristine sound makes HC very "Hollywood", which I think is often overlooked. Also wordbuilder is definitely not a gimmick.

Re: if you can only have one choir library, I'd say Genesis (recently released). The library has one of the most advanced scripting and consistently high playability IMO.
 

Quantum Leap

nickphoenix.com
I think so much could be resolved by just being more transparent in the advertising. If it was crystal clear that staccato samples and playable legatos were not the primary focus of the library then maybe the reviews would be kinder as the library would have been purchased by people knowing what to expect. Some companies like Imperfect Samples and Musical Sampling make it clear what you can and cannot expect. Others like 8dio and Spitfire have often touted their products as being the only thing you'll need so it's little wonder people are pissed off when they discover it's not.

All that said, I have zero issue with Eastwest products, enjoy using them all and and grateful that you, Nick, had the vision and tenacity to see these things through to fruition so this isn't a dig at your work; just an observation.

Good point.
 

Quantum Leap

nickphoenix.com
Thank you for the response Nick. East West does have some of the best recorded samples I know of. As a recording engineer I can hear the quality of the mics and gear you used, and the choice of players seems top notch as well.

So my question is where is Play Pro? Having such great samples without any way of making your own patches, without keyswitch patches that have many articulations, or a way to stack or layer articulations without multiple instances (see videos of Impact Soundworks Ventus or OT Capsule or Project Sam...), makes East West seem... forgive me... outdated by comparison for a working composer.

Seriously consider revamping Play. Even if it’s not Play Pro, make some more keyswitch patches, ensemble patches, patches that try combining things or allow us to get to all the articulations better. Have a CC assignment section, allow composers to customized how the patches are used and controlled, even if the layout can’t be changed. Consider how to best make the great samples you already have, shine. Check for any pitch or programming issues.

This would revamp every library. Yes, it should be a free upgrade, but it would bring in new customers to libraries that just deserve a little more respect and apprecition. Getting the samples right is where many samples libraries fall short, yet you have this difficult stage covered. In some ways it is the player and the patches that are holding these libraries back.

The Hollywood library could use this, SD3, Silk, Ra, even the new Hollywood Choirs would all benifit with a great player update.

Thanks for listening and putting so much work into these samples, it does make a huge difference.

-XB

The reason is we haven’t been hacked yet. No pirated libraries. PLAY was the worst best decision ever made. Lol and crying a bit. Some (not all by any means) of the EW haters are actually the guys that can’t pirate the stuff. It’s pisses them off. 90% of kontakt library users are pirates. Play actually has some advantages over Kontakt. And it’s pretty good these days. Hollywood choirs interface is decent. It’s not all bad at all. And soon...
 

Jimmy Hellfire

Senior Member
I have Hollywood Strings, Brass and Perc, but I never use them. I'm attracted to the sound, but in practice, I can't put up with EW PAIN. Not being able to have multiple articulations on the same channel and use keyswitches is ridiculous. It takes away so much value from these libraries, it's bitter.
 

Jdiggity1

Senior Member
Moderator
I have Hollywood Strings, Brass and Perc, but I never use them. I'm attracted to the sound, but in practice, I can't put up with EW PAIN. Not being able to have multiple articulations on the same channel and use keyswitches is ridiculous. It takes away so much value from these libraries, it's bitter.
Come now Jimmy... we know you use Cubase, which has a fantastic tool called Expression Maps. This allows you to create your own keyswitches! Granted, you did specify "on the same channel", but does that actually make a real-world difference, and "take away so much value from these libraries"? Bit of a weak argument there...

Though one thing I would love to be able to do in PLAY is have more control over which samples are enabled, such as taking RR #2 out if it has a noise I don't like. Or adjusting sample start times, etc. But even most new kontakt libraries are locked down and don't allow this, making the differences between Kontakt and Play harder and harder to identify.
 

Jimmy Hellfire

Senior Member
Come now Jimmy... we know you use Cubase, which has a fantastic tool called Expression Maps. This allows you to create your own keyswitches! Granted, you did specify "on the same channel", but does that actually make a real-world difference, and "take away so much value from these libraries"? Bit of a weak argument there...

Well it's not an argument, it is what it is. I have of course created expression maps for those libraries, but having to spread the arts across multiple channels is suboptimal and introduces hassles I choose to simply not have by using other libraries instead.

It's not like I'm asking for some advanced, outlandish thing either. The damn thing doesn't support keyswitches. It's silly.
 

Jdiggity1

Senior Member
Moderator
Well it's not an argument, it is what it is. I have of course created expression maps for those libraries, but having to spread the arts across multiple channels is suboptimal and introduces hassles I choose to simply not have by using other libraries instead.

It's not like I'm asking for some advanced, outlandish thing either. The damn thing doesn't support keyswitches. It's silly.
What do you mean though? Obviously the libraries do have keyswitch patches (though I agree, products like HWS could certainly do with more options). But is it not just a library-specific thing, as opposed to a sampler-related thing?
As far as I know, kontakt doesn't allow you to create keyswitches for libraries that do not include them by default.
 

Jimmy Hellfire

Senior Member
What do you mean though? Obviously the libraries do have keyswitch patches (though I agree, products like HWS could certainly do with more options). But is it not just a library-specific thing, as opposed to a sampler-related thing?
As far as I know, kontakt doesn't allow you to create keyswitches for libraries that do not include them by default.

Technically it is the libraries that don't support it. But if the player had any advanced functionality, this could be mitigated without updating all the libraries one by one. In Capsule or VI Pro / Synchron Player, I can say: put this articulation into that slot and activate it via KS or CC so-and-so. The latter can do a hell of a lot more clever stuff too. But at least give me a library that has keyswitch functionality by itself, and perhaps lets me customize them. Like pretty much almost any Kontakt library you can buy.

In contrast, the EW ecosystem seems a bit primitive. Which does the pretty attractive sound a huge disservice. There's so many options for really great and competitive sounds nowadays. What makes a difference is being able to customize and optimize your workflow and get stuff done.
 

Parsifal666

I don't even own a DAW, I'm just a troll.
Technically it is the libraries that don't support it. But if the player had any advanced functionality, this could be mitigated without updating all the libraries one by one. In Capsule or VI Pro / Synchron Player, I can say: put this articulation into that slot and activate it via KS or CC so-and-so. The latter can do a hell of a lot more clever stuff too. But at least give me a library that has keyswitch functionality by itself, and perhaps lets me customize them. Like pretty much almost any Kontakt library you can buy.

In contrast, the EW ecosystem seems a bit primitive. Which does the pretty attractive sound a huge disservice. There's so many options for really great and competitive sounds nowadays. What makes a difference is being able to customize and optimize your workflow and get stuff done.

The Play engine fer darn sure ain't Kontakt. But it's also not exactly dreadful imo. I personally don't have a problem using single articulations for each track (I'm on Windows 10, Dell Inspiron laptop, 32 gb RAM). A lot of the time it makes it easier for me to navigate my project, doing just that.

I think one of the reasons I champion EW is because I did mostly master using their libraries...though I've got to admit having used them for over ten years now ( which of course makes a difference, especially when compared to folks who're just coming to those libraries through, say, CC).

Play and EW takes patience, patience, patience. But I've found the rewards to be many, and are still ongoing.
 

TeamLeader

Active Member
Thank you for the response Nick.

So my question is where is Play Pro? ....


-XB

There is the million dollar question. How many years ago was that promised to some of us? LOL (And yes, we have tons of EW stuff, but have put a moratorium on it. Along with counseling the 35 synch folks around the globe whom we handle to do the same.) I really wish for this reason that EW had stayed entirely in Kontakt. Sigh....
 

StatKsn

Active Member
I still seriously believe that Play Pro was just a ploy to keep some interest in when Play was still a dumpster fire, haha.
 
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