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John Williams' Lost World Theme Mockup

AlexanderSchiborr

Senior Member
Hi all!

Wanted to share this simple mockup I recently uploaded.


I used VSL (All standard except strings) with MIR Pro (Vienna konzerthaus).

Cheers!

Good work here. Dont know if you are after some suggestions. Some stuff sounds cool, most of it a bit very midi..don´t know what your goals here is but if you want to replicate a live performance you have to spent more time into programming, and expression. Some balancing issues are there too and a lot of the things sound too clean and and in tune. The orchestra doesn´t also blend together that much so that the tuttis sound like a "unit". But what most doesn´t works for me is the room sound overall which is very artificial. Now..Maybe the idea could be to go one step back and rework the reverberation settings. I guess you didn´t used a live reference? If so, that can help incredibly. Anyways a good start. :)
 
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JuanSebastianBach

JuanSebastianBach

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Good work here. Dont know if you are after some suggestions. Some stuff sounds cool, most of it a bit very midi..don´t know what your goals here is but if you want to replicate a live performance you have to spent more time into programming, and expression. Some balancing issues are there too and a lot of the things sound too clean and and in tune. The orchestra doesn´t also blend together that much so that the tuttis sound like a "unit". But what most doesn´t works for me is the room sound overall which is very artificial. Now..Maybe the idea could be to go one step back and rework the reverberation settings. I guess you didn´t used a live reference? If so, that can help incredibly. Anyways a good start. :)

Suggestions are always welcome! I know it sounds a bit MIDI on some places, and yes I think it is a matter of programming: needs moar CC!!! I guess my goals were to explore & study the orchestration, it is a real challenge!
Also, MIR PRO, although a really good tool, needs a lot of tweaking and "ear resting" to get it right. Plus, I worked with headphones all the time, so it's tricky!
Thanks for the feedback Alexander!
 

AlexanderSchiborr

Senior Member
Suggestions are always welcome! I know it sounds a bit MIDI on some places, and yes I think it is a matter of programming: needs moar CC!!! I guess my goals were to explore & study the orchestration, it is a real challenge!
Also, MIR PRO, although a really good tool, needs a lot of tweaking and "ear resting" to get it right. Plus, I worked with headphones all the time, so it's tricky!
Thanks for the feedback Alexander!

Ah no worries. Headphones are good. I think this is anyways a challenge, but that you chose only VSL is even more a challenge. Not because VSl is bad but just because you are limited with one library and design astethics. If you habe other libraries it can help to combine different libraries, because some have other strenghts than others and you can combine them to your own needs. Just as an idea ;)
 

Paul T McGraw

Senior Member
@JuanSebastianBach it sounds good. Yes, there are places that could use some work, but great job so far. If you have VSL Instruments Pro player, don't be afraid to use higher humanization settings. And if you control the humanizations with a CC, then you can push them to the max for runs and quick passages.

I own just about everything sold by VSL, as well as the full Spitfire Orchestra and Berlin Brass, among many other libraries. I still find myself going back to VSL on tracks after trying out the material with other libraries. Sadly, nothing will sound exactly like a live orchestra. But I think you can get very close with VSL, and the advantages of VSL in low memory and CPU usage, customization of the player, the humanization feature, etc. make VSL a joy to use.

Your mix actually sounds pretty good to me, but here are some things I have learned about working with VSL instruments, in case it helps.
  • Increase humanization settings if you have VI Pro Player
  • Put a low cut filter on every instrument. For bass instruments you can cut at 50 hz, all others cut at 100 hz. When using MIR it is easy to get a kind of noise buildup like a rumble that can really hurt you.
  • In MIR less is often more. Try to never use more than a 40% to 45% wet/dry setting on any instrument. For very low instruments like tuba, double bass, etc. use a 30% to 35% wet/dry mix.
  • The overall MIR setting can be -15% to -30%.
  • Do use an additional reverb (just barely heard) to add complexity to the soundscape. I have tried MIRACLE, Altiverb and the TC6000 plugins. All are good and will work fine.

Please return the favor and share with me any tricks you might have learned for working with VSL instruments and MIR.
 
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JuanSebastianBach

JuanSebastianBach

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Thanks @Paul T McGraw!
I toyed a bit with humanization, but I think next time I need to "exaggerate" a bit (some times you need to do that with a real orchestra). I definitely need to play around with EQing, although I find it quite difficult to "hear".
In regards to reverb, I reduced dry/wet to -20% and added a tad of Miracle, but I think the "build up" you mention went out of hand.
In terms of tricks, I'd say something you might have read somewhere else: don't trust the instruments locations, rather your ear. I ended up putting the trumpets closer, but with a higher dry/wet ratio, and found the sound I was looking for.
 

WhiteNoiz

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I think it's pretty good. Programming-wise it seems to be fine, maybe it needs slightly stronger dynamics at the loud parts and the woods are the weakest part (mostly in timbre). Not sure what you could do with them. Maybe kinda different placement or dynamic/EQ. Overall, I think it suffers slightly production-wise (eq/reverb/coloration); dunno how much better it could be playing/programming-wise, but I guess you could try to edit some more if you wanna get super detailed (but you will probably soon be reaching a point of diminishing returns for the editing time put in). So, yeah, it's some details that strike a bit, but nothing too major I feel.

(Is it synchron libs for strings + perc? Or are all from the older ones?)

I'd probably move towards this direction production-wise (trying to make it a bit more uniform/blended/shaped, for a quick comparison):
https://instaud.io/private/49a9c4eb7ed1c827097be7d4ef0f52168ee37abd

In general, I think you have some room to exaggerate your settings some more.
 

Paul T McGraw

Senior Member
I think it's pretty good. Programming-wise it seems to be fine, maybe it needs slightly stronger dynamics at the loud parts and the woods are the weakest part (mostly in timbre). Not sure what you could do with them. Maybe kinda different placement or dynamic/EQ. Overall, I think it suffers slightly production-wise (eq/reverb/coloration); dunno how much better it could be playing/programming-wise, but I guess you could try to edit some more if you wanna get super detailed (but you will probably soon be reaching a point of diminishing returns for the editing time put in). So, yeah, it's some details that strike a bit, but nothing too major I feel.

(Is it synchron libs for strings + perc? Or are all from the older ones?)

I'd probably move towards this direction production-wise (trying to make it a bit more uniform/blended/shaped, for a quick comparison):
https://instaud.io/private/49a9c4eb7ed1c827097be7d4ef0f52168ee37abd

In general, I think you have some room to exaggerate your settings some more.

Nice, is this your mockup or someone else?
 
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JuanSebastianBach

JuanSebastianBach

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Whoa @WhiteNoiz that sounds good! I have lots of trouble with dynamics, I don't know much about mixing and/or mastering. I think I mostly care about the musical aspect, I think you round it up with:

In general, I think you have some room to exaggerate your settings some more.

Also:

(Is it synchron libs for strings + perc? Or are all from the older ones?)

Just the old ones. (Appassionata String + standard String + standard perc & WW & Brass)
 
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