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Hi!

I'm trying to decide which orchestral library to start. There is the Spitfire spring sale going on right now, and I'm thinking about the BBCSO but I'm not sure what to do.
I'm not new to orchestration, I have studied it and scored more than a few songs. I would like a library that I can write all the instrument sessions independently, and achieve a sound that is classical and movie soundtrack, and that's why I think the BBCSO would be a nice start.
I would like some suggestions about it and some suggestions about this questions:

1. I also sometimes work recording keyboards for rock and metal bands. Is the BBCSO too wet for that?
2. Regarding BBCSO professional and core, is the price difference justified by the extra mics, extra instruments and articulations?
3. Should I but BBCSO core and buy other libraries with the 300 dollar difference?
4. I'm thinking about buying Metropolis Ark 1 and 2 later, to get a big epic sound. So I can write independent instruments with BBC and use Ark for the big moments. Would it be a good complement to the BBCSO core or professional?
5. Would you suggest other libraries arrangement around 1200 dollar budget?

English is not my first language, so I hope my thread is not too confusing

Thanks!
 
Gabriel,

Sounds like you have a good plan and know what you need--I would suggest also looking at Symphobia Pandora (or Pandora Core) for the "epic" sound you want. I have BBCSO Professional, and for regular orchestrational needs it is hard to beat as a complete package.
Thank you! I didn't know pandora yet! I'm watching walkthroughs.

Would you recommend getting the professional BBCSO? Or the Core + other library would be a better spent money?
 
If your focus is a classical symphony sound, BBCSO is a great value. I find it struggles to fit well with rock/metal because of the lack of aggression in the upper dynamics.

The Metropolis Ark series can do loud and aggressive, but be aware it does not break out individual instrument groups and is very wet like BBCSO.

If you’re trying to focus on just a single, all purpose library that can do many styles, East West Hollywood Orchestra Opus Edition is very powerful and flexible. You’ll just have to spend some time with the manual to understand the patch structure and variations in CC controls.

Cinematic Studio Series is also very flexible stylistically, very deep and has some of the most highly regarded legato, but it can be tricky to use the legato due to the changes in timing depending on velocity. The rest of the articulation set is very consistent and easy to use. It lacks a percussion section yet, but you can get that from other libraries and blend them fairly easily. Once you buy one of the main libraries, the rest are always 30% off.
 
For the classical orchestra BBC is hard to beat. I'd start with Core and use that for a while and upgrade to Pro later. For blending with the rock genre i'd probably have a look at Nucleus / Jaeger instead of MA, since they offer a more modern and slighly drier verson of the agressive sound, in comparison to MA that sounds more old school and wet. :)
 
Gabriel,

Sounds like you have a good plan and know what you need--I would suggest also looking at Symphobia Pandora (or Pandora Core) for the "epic" sound you want. I have BBCSO Professional, and for regular orchestrational needs it is hard to beat as a complete package.
I quite agree, but maybe Pandora is too much on the dark side...anyhow, if you want some of the epic sound right out of the box then yes, Symphobia 1 (whilst Pandora is considered Symphobia 4) or even Orchestral Essentials 1 might be a good choice
PS: dal nome immagino che sei italiano?
 
+1 For BBCSO Core as your individual instrument classical orchestra and also for Nucleus / Jaeger as the solution for more modern sounding epic-ish pre-orchestrations. With the current sale on at Spitfire, it's a bit of a no brainer.
 
Thank you! I didn't know pandora yet! I'm watching walkthroughs.

Would you recommend getting the professional BBCSO? Or the Core + other library would be a better spent money?
If you’re just getting started, you may want to just grab the professional. You’ll probably want to have solo instruments/section leader patches IMO. I also, personally, really like playing with mic positions 🤷‍♂️.
 
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+1 For BBCSO Core as your individual instrument classical orchestra
...unless you care about viola, clarinet, or trombone solos, none of which Core has. Not to mention no ensembles.

FWIW I am not a BBCSO "hater." I have Discovery and think it sounds really nice. Just trying to provide a balanced opinion...
 
...unless you care about viola, clarinet, or trombone solos, none of which Core has. Not to mention no ensembles.

FWIW I am not a BBCSO "hater." I have Discovery and think it sounds really nice. Just trying to provide a balanced opinion...
Oh, but core does have the wind and brass soloists. Just not the string leaders. :)

And ensemble patches are very easily created by just combining for examples all strings sustains, or all strings spiccato with a track stack, or by just record enabling them all at once. Sounds lovely!
 
Hey all, sorry, I double-checked and outdated info...per Spitfire, and I quote, "here is an accurate list of the solo patches included in BBC SO Core:"

-Flute
-Piccolo
-Oboe
-Clarinet
-Bassoon
-Horn
-Trumpet
-Tenor Trombone
-Tuba
-Most Percussion patches

So as others stated earlier, basically no string solos. Which frankly IMO is even weaker than my earlier assumption. So yay to BBCSO Core...if you don't care about string solos.
 
For classic I would definately go with BBCSO Pro and add AlbionONE for the more epic stuff (or even the Epic bundle from current sale). With both on sale you are under 1200€ budget.
 
For classic I would definately go with BBCSO Pro and add AlbionONE for the more epic stuff. With both on sale you are under 1200€ budget.
For epic mixed with other genres like rock, Albion might be too wet though. I’d probably have a look at nucleus/Jaeger instead for that purpose, since they are much drier. :)
 
In that context of music as you describe, I would rather go with something from NI (Session Strings Pro) or Spectrasonics Omnisphere. In fact, you can't go wrong with Omnisphere either way.

BW, if you don't like the Spitfire stuff, you have no way of passing it on, as it is not resaleable, unlike the Native Instruments licenses. Might be something to be aware of, when you are buying your first lib.
 
I have BBCSO Pro and OPUS / HO Diamond and prefer OPUS 9 times out of 10. The string divisi alone are worth it to me and I like the slightly more opulent sound of EW better.

In the end, I guess it's more of a taste decision in terms of sound.

I find the strings in OPUS, especially the legatos, and the brass to be classes above. I like the woodwinds in BBCSO a bit better. There is something like performance patches in both libraries, I find EW's musically more usable.
 
Since you managed to save a nice budget of around $1200, I would suggest you to also consider VSL Synchron-ized Special Editions Vol.1, Vol.1 Plus, Vol.2, and Vol.2 Plus. There are many demos and walkthroughs on YT.

It is as cohesive and balanced as a virtual symphonic orchestra can be, has an insane number of solo instruments (including a wonderful detailed Steinway D grand piano), a great variety of sections and ensembles, it's very capable of a rich classical sound, and - last but not least - Sychron Player is one of the most capable Players available these days.

Also the whole package is far less demanding on CPU and RAM (if that concerns you) than EW OPUS (any version) or BBCSO Pro. For now it requires a physical USB-dongle, but in the future (before the end of 2021) this will not be the case.

Since it's considered to be a "starter library" (a premium one for sure!), it lacks the dynamic layers of - say - EW OPUS, and you can't control separately the vibrato. It's up to you to decide how detailed you want to go. :)
 
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