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Opinions on dronar and shreddage2 please

nik

Active Member
hey would love to hear your oppinions on these vsts. i have to say that i study guitar at university but i broke my arm and cant play for the next two months. i wanted to make some trailer tracks and thought maybe shreddage2 could be a nice addition...
what about dronar,is it worth it?
thanks and best regards
nik
 

Ronald Wilson

New Member
You have Kontakt, yes? You may want to look at the default library or if you have komplete look at strummed, etc too. As a guitarist you may find this lacking. Not to say it's bad, but there is better out there.

Shreddage is excellent. It's on sale now too. I'd recommend it, just bear in mind it's designed for more a rock/metal/pop and musical sound for studio and recording work where you'd use a real guitar (you can obviously vary that tremendously with amp and cab sims), it's not really an "out of the box" scoring library. https://vstbuzz.com/deals/78-off-shreddage-bundle-impact-soundworks/

Personally, though H7S (heavier7strings) is my favorite guitar VST, the leads are gorgeous. V-metal's Prominy is also quite excellent. Some people also like realeight, amplesounds and others. Orangetree is popular in scoring, but as a guitarist by training and not a keyboardist like many people on here, I found it disappointing, due to a the rather low level of customize-ability and a lack of features present in libraries oriented more towards use in studio recordings. This is not a criticism of the product in itself, it is designed for "out of the box" scoring, so that is, for the most part, on purpose. Just not to my taste.

You may also want to look at the Indiginus stuff, they have a lot of good libraries. Their nylon is quite nice.

Dronar isn't a guitar library, it's some kind of pads library. Maybe someone else can chime in on that, I don't own it.
 
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nik

nik

Active Member
You have Kontakt, yes? You may want to look at the default library or if you have komplete look at strummed, etc too. As a guitarist you may find this lacking. Not to say it's bad, but there is better out there.

Shreddage is excellent. It's on sale now too. I'd recommend it, just bear in mind it's designed for more a rock/metal/pop and musical sound for studio and recording work where you'd use a real guitar (you can obviously vary that tremendously with amp and cab sims), it's not really an "out of the box" scoring library. https://vstbuzz.com/deals/78-off-shreddage-bundle-impact-soundworks/

Personally, though H7S (heavier7strings) is my favorite guitar VST, the leads are gorgeous. V-metal's Prominy is also quite excellent. Some people also like realeight, amplesounds and others. Orangetree is popular in scoring, but as a guitarist by training and not a keyboardist like many people on here, I found it disappointing, due to a the rather low level of customize-ability and a lack of features present in libraries oriented more towards use in studio recordings. This is not a criticism of the product in itself, it is designed for "out of the box" scoring, so that is, for the most part, on purpose. Just not to my taste.

You may also want to look at the Indiginus stuff, they have a lot of good libraries. Their nylon is quite nice.

Dronar isn't a guitar library, it's some kind of pads library. Maybe someone else can chime in on that, I don't own it.
hey thanks a lot lot the detailed answer. i will check on your recommendations. yeah dronar is for making drones, maybe i should have posted it another thread Thanks a lot ronald!!
 

Ronald Wilson

New Member
Cool! Glad to help. Feel better. I hope you find a VST you like while you're healing up.

FYI -

Shreddage and related
https://impactsoundworks.com/products/category/guitar-bass/

H7S
http://www.threebodytech.com/

V-Metal
http://www.prominy.com/V_METAL.htm

Amplesound
http://www.amplesound.net/en/index.asp

Realeight
https://www.musiclab.com/products/realeight/info.html

Indiginus Renaxxence (Nylon)
http://indiginus.com/Renaxxance.html

I think Orangetree has a groupbuy sale of some kind too, check the forums
 
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nik

nik

Active Member
Cool! Glad to help. Feel better. I hope you find a VST you like while you're healing up.

FYI -

Shreddage and related
https://impactsoundworks.com/products/category/guitar-bass/

H7S
http://www.threebodytech.com/

V-Metal
http://www.prominy.com/V_METAL.htm

Amplesound
http://www.amplesound.net/en/index.asp

Realeight
https://www.musiclab.com/products/realeight/info.html

Indiginus Renaxxence (Nylon)
http://indiginus.com/Renaxxance.html

I think Orangetree has a groupbuy sale of some kind too, check the forums
oh great ,thanks so much man!! thats really kind!! wish u the best,
nik
 

MartinH.

Senior Member
Odin is one I heard about the first time yesterday (on sale right now it seems):
https://solemntones.com/products/odin

Orangetree is popular in scoring, but as a guitarist by training and not a keyboardist like many people on here, I found it disappointing, due to a the rather low level of customize-ability and a lack of features present in libraries oriented more towards use in studio recordings.
Since you play guitar and know many libraries, maybe you can answer me this: which of the guitar libraries is the best for a) tremolo picking single notes and b) tremolo picking chords, like many blackmetal bands do.

Shreddage 2 has a tremolo articulation, but that isn't ideal for chords, and playing 16th notes sounds on chords sounds rather machine-gunny imho. In such a situation, would you prefer the less realistic sound of one guitar playing 16th note chords or having an unrealistic number of guitars that each play single note tremolo articulations to form the chords?

I do have a real guitar, but I had to give up playing stuff like that for health reasons too. So that's not an option.
 

Ronald Wilson

New Member
Hi MartinH.,

Are you using SII or SII IBZ? IBZ tends to be better for rhythm.

None of them are really ideal for tremolo picking, that's kind of a hard one since it's tough not to get machine-gunning on anything sampled played very quickly. The last time I did anything in that vein was for a surf track, but the picking style is the same as black metal. What I did was I modeled the guitar myself (played the line using a beatpad) and ran it through a tweed ampsim and then a cabsim. With the black metal sound, due to the outrageous amounts of usually unmuted distortion, that might actually work better than a guitar VST provided you use the appropriate amp/cab sims + IRs. The black metal sound is noisy and has lots of reverb so it has a fair amount of wiggle room.

In terms of the VST's though I'd be happy to ask some people I know who use them a lot and get back to you if you'd like. There's actually a guitar discord I'd be happy to invite you too if you'd like (as well as nik). Feel free to pm me if you'd like.

How do you mean tremolo picking chords? Tremolo picking is on a single string. Maybe its called something else where you're from, do you have an example? Do you mean power chords? Rakes? I don't quite know what you mean. Do you have a reference track?

Odin from my understanding and from what I've heard, it just has 1 mute layer, which is less favorable in a new product. Its sound is targeted more towards the "Chango Productions" "chango-core" sound. I think it's "deathcore" though I don't really listen to those genres much. If you're are going for that sound maybe check it out, if you're not, I believe there are better options to consider.

Cheers.
 

heisenberg

Senior Member
DRONAR Guitarscapes, as mentioned above is a pad, drone library that has been derived from guitars. It is not a guitar library, HOWEVER, in my view it is by FAR the best and tastiest library that the DRONAR team have done to date. Just love it.
 
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MartinH.

Senior Member
Hi MartinH.,

Are you using SII or SII IBZ? IBZ tends to be better for rhythm.

None of them are really ideal for tremolo picking, that's kind of a hard one since it's tough not to get machine-gunning on anything sampled played very quickly. The last time I did anything in that vein was for a surf track, but the picking style is the same as black metal. What I did was I modeled the guitar myself (played the line using a beatpad) and ran it through a tweed ampsim and then a cabsim. With the black metal sound, due to the outrageous amounts of usually unmuted distortion, that might actually work better than a guitar VST provided you use the appropriate amp/cab sims + IRs. The black metal sound is noisy and has lots of reverb so it has a fair amount of wiggle room.

In terms of the VST's though I'd be happy to ask some people I know who use them a lot and get back to you if you'd like. There's actually a guitar discord I'd be happy to invite you too if you'd like (as well as nik). Feel free to pm me if you'd like.

How do you mean tremolo picking chords? Tremolo picking is on a single string. Maybe its called something else where you're from, do you have an example? Do you mean power chords? Rakes? I don't quite know what you mean. Do you have a reference track?

Odin from my understanding and from what I've heard, it just has 1 mute layer, which is less favorable in a new product. Its sound is targeted more towards the "Chango Productions" "chango-core" sound. I think it's "deathcore" though I don't really listen to those genres much. If you're are going for that sound maybe check it out, if you're not, I believe there are better options to consider.

Cheers.
Hi @Ronald Wilson, Thanks a lot for your in depth reply! I only saw it just now (months later :( ), because the forum never notified me of your answer (I believe it only does that when using the @ tag or quoting a post directly). Sorry I'm replying so late! I actually only saw your post because I searched for tremolo picking again, and this thread came up.


How do you mean tremolo picking chords? Tremolo picking is on a single string. Maybe its called something else where you're from, do you have an example? Do you mean power chords? Rakes? I don't quite know what you mean. Do you have a reference track?
I'm not very good with guitar terminology because I'm self-taught. I meant playing something like this as 16th notes with alternating up- and down-strokes:

-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-
-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-
-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-9-


As for reference, maybe the start of this track (though I'm not 100% sure what they are actually playing):


Are you using SII or SII IBZ? IBZ tends to be better for rhythm.
I'm using SII, though I'm considering updating to S3 once it is released. I need to ask the devs if maybe their new stratocaster library would be a better fit for me, if I recall correctly I've read something about a greater focus on tremolo picking, including tremolo picked slides. Probably more intended for surf guitar than black metal, but maybe it works?

I've mocked up the tab example from above in shreddage 2 in 3 ways:

bm-chord-example.mp3


(All is double-tracked) First is just triggering single notes, second is using the midi-channel-per-string mode to manually assing the notes to the strings they would be on on a real guitar, and slightly stagger their trigger times to get a bit of that strumming motion, and the last one is just one long 3-note chord using the tremolo articulation. I think that sounds the most natural and least machine-gunny, but I know that it is "technically" very different from how I would play such a chord on a real guitar. It is like 3 people each tremolo picking one note of the chord into the same amp, instead of one person picking 3 strings on 1 guitar.

I have set up my project template to have 3 guitars, panned left, right, and center, so I might just split up chords accross those 3 guitars. Here is an example (not double tracked):

bm-chord-distributed-over-3-guitars-example.mp3

I think it sounds somewhat better, but I don't like how "off balance" it sounds without the double tracking but with hard panned guitars.


And one last one where I have the root note of the chord on the center guitar, and the other two notes each on one double tracked, hard panned, guitar with its own ampsim, so 5 in total:

bm-chord-distributed-over-5-guitars-example.mp3

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/bm-chord-example-mp3.15933/][/AUDIOPLUS]

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/bm-chord-distributed-over-3-guitars-example-mp3.15935/][/AUDIOPLUS]

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/bm-chord-distributed-over-5-guitars-example-mp3.15936/][/AUDIOPLUS]



One more thing that I should add, that probably explains part of my confusion about the whole tremolo picking in black metal thing: I'm not sure if there is a consensus on whether the typical blackmetal tremolo picking is supposed to be precise 16th notes, or just as fast as the guitar player can do for minutes on end without his arm falling off. I also don't know which one actually sounds better in a double-tracked recording.
 

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Henu

Senior Member
That Woods of Desolation is definitely 16th triplets on guitars. The intention is to technically play either the same speed or double speed with the kick drum, depending on the tempo of the song. Or let's say that it's rather a "general guideline" adopted by most of the bands, but naturally it is completely up to people how conventionally they want to do it!

One crucial point is to be made unfortunately, which is that you will have a hell of a hard time emulating that certain style of "arhythmic" picking in VST's and midi. You see, what often happens is that instead of sharp 16th notes you end up playing something between 8th- note triplets and those 16th notes when the tempo is a bit too fast to sustain as a guitarist. And that also makes the overall guitar sound a bit more "wall of sound" instead of sharp and distinguished rhythmic playing. It's part of the charm and part of the style as well which differs black metal from many other metal genres, and is generally accepted to sound like that instead of sounding like technical death metal. :P

So technically- to answer your last question, you are definitely on the right track with your analysis as the players will try to keep up with the tempo as much as they can, but usually it falls down to the "pick as fast as you can"- category which makes the sound more blurred in general. Which one sounds better is completely depending on the tempo of the riff, the complexity of the riff and the capability of the guitar player.

But more than often, the imperfections doubled together is what makes the sound to sound as you know it- a bit like 1st and 2nd violins are playing together a fast run. And we all know how horrible would a grid- aligned perfectly programmed spiccato run sounds like. ;)

PS: Concerning your possible worries on not seeing replies, let's tag you up, @MartinH. !
 
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Ronald Wilson

New Member
@MartinH.

I think the 3rd is pretty convincing, tbh.

Hmmm, let me think about this after reading what @Henu wrote. IDK how you're tuned, I assume drop D or something or if you're using a 7 string. So it's 3 note chords played extremely rapidly. Do you have an example without the black metal distortion/reverb e.g. you playing one of these?

Instead of trem picking using the vst articulation, I would probably do this by hand using my beat pad technique (initially using a non-sampled instrument run through an amp/cab sims to avoid latency), and then copy it to the fifth and octave or whatever the voicing is and add minor delay to the second and third note in the chord like 5-11ms and switch to sampled. A forearm perpendicular to the beatpad lets you tap quicker. Less movement is more.

People (including guitarists) thought my surf track was an actual guitar. The genre has a distinctive tone, and the playing was convincing since I played through it on the beatpad (rather than looping 4 or 8 bars of rhythm or w/e which is a temptation). I imagine you're playing the whole thing within the same octave, so as long as you have 8 beatpads on your controller, this shouldn't be hard to do the same thing. I left in some minor "playing errors" too (!).

I think the beat pad technique will make it sound pretty human plus w/an fx chain like this which is rather heavy and the distinctive tone given the genre (much like surf and tweed) will make it sound even more convincing since you obviously have that whole reverb-y black metal thing down. Your playing chords throws a wrinkle in it since it's not really actually tremolo picking but as someone else mentioned just "playing til your arm falls off", but I don't think it's insurmountable.

With the beatpad, you may also want to try playing at half time or double time depending on how easy or difficult you find the timing. As a guitarist, you may actually play "too well" at speed for the sound you're going for. You're actually emulating someone who, technically speaking, isn't playing well.

Ultimately, if you still get machine gunning, you may have to consider modeling and running a synth tone through the amp and cab instead of using a sampled instrument.
 
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MartinH.

Senior Member
Thanks a lot guys, I feel like we're getting closer to a solution!
That Woods of Desolation is definitely 16th triplets on guitars.
To me it's like magic that you can hear that. Is there something like dyslexia for rythm, because I think I might have something like that. I've experienced trying to play to a metronome and feeling like the metronome beat gets super irregular as soon as I start playing. That's something I never got a grip on.

The intention is to technically play either the same speed or double speed with the kick drum, depending on the tempo of the song. Or let's say that it's rather a "general guideline" adopted by most of the bands, but naturally it is completely up to people how conventionally they want to do it!
Good to know!

One crucial point is to be made unfortunately, which is that you will have a hell of a hard time emulating that certain style of "arhythmic" picking in VST's and midi. You see, what often happens is that instead of sharp 16th notes you end up playing something between 8th- note triplets and those 16th notes when the tempo is a bit too fast to sustain as a guitarist.
Maybe I could automate the speed dial for the tremolo picking articulation in shreddage 2 and adjust the picking speed with it?

And that also makes the overall guitar sound a bit more "wall of sound" instead of sharp and distinguished rhythmic playing. It's part of the charm and part of the style as well which differs black metal from many other metal genres, and is generally accepted to sound like that instead of sounding like technical death metal. :P
I can see that. In one of my experiments I used a transient shaper to soften the attack of each picked note to get the sound a little more silky.

I think the 3rd is pretty convincing, tbh.
Glad to hear that! I was concerned it might sound weird to have "too many guitars", but it's probably still closer to "real playing" than trying to emulate strumming across a chord from single-note articulations.

Hmmm, let me think about this after reading what @Henu wrote. IDK how you're tuned, I assume drop D or something or if you're using a 7 string. So it's 3 note chords played extremely rapidly. Do you have an example without the black metal distortion/reverb e.g. you playing one of these?
Iirc shreddage is a drop g 7 string, my 6 string is B, and my 7 string is Bb. I've uploaded 2 examples:

dry:
guitar-chord-dry.mp3

distorted:
guitar-chord-distorted.mp3

both are the same instrument input, but one dry and one distorted. The first riff is me playing my 6-string, the second riff is me playing my 7-string, the 3rd riff is shreddage 2 with the singlenote articulation and staggered note triggers like this:

upload_2018-10-23_23-47-34.png



Instead of trem picking using the vst articulation, I would probably do this by hand using my beat pad technique (initially using a non-sampled instrument run through an amp/cab sims to avoid latency), and then copy it to the fifth and octave or whatever the voicing is and add minor delay to the second and third note in the chord like 5-11ms and switch to sampled. A forearm perpendicular to the beatpad lets you tap quicker. Less movement is more.
I'm not very familiar with surf guitar, do you mean a sound like this?



I think the beat pad technique will make it sound pretty human plus w/an fx chain like this which is rather heavy and the distinctive tone given the genre (much like surf and tweed) will make it sound even more convincing since you obviously have that whole reverb-y black metal thing down. Your playing chords throws a wrinkle in it since it's not really actually tremolo picking but as someone else mentioned just "playing til your arm falls off", but I don't think it's insurmountable.
I tried using a pad controller to do "tremolo triggering" of the singlenote articulation of shreddage 2 and clean I could see that fooling someone into thinking it is a real guitar, but with distortion it sounds terribly machinegunny. I believe the distortion hides some things, but greatly amplifies others. If you listen to my 3 example riffs, I kind of like the shreddage version the most from the clean ones, but when adding distortion, the machinegun effect starts to show again imho. The real guitar riffs sound really bad to me too though :-/.


With the beatpad, you may also want to try playing at half time or double time depending on how easy or difficult you find the timing. As a guitarist, you may actually play "too well" at speed for the sound you're going for. You're actually emulating someone who, technically speaking, isn't playing well.
I can guarantuee that I'm not playing "too well" :D. I'm roughly at a level of 1 or 2 years of casual guitar practice. I had to stop playing real early because I got medical issues in my wrist from it. I barely touched my guitars in the last 15 years :(.

Ultimately, if you still get machine gunning, you may have to consider modeling and running a synth tone through the amp and cab instead of using a sampled instrument.
At the moment I feel like my best bet is using the tremolo picked articulation of shreddage 2, because that is a real player doing tremolo picking and I can't get "more real" with synths or other means. And even if I recorded my own sampled tremolo picking Kontakt instrument, my guitars sound much worse than the one in S2.
One more example and question if I may:

riff-a-b.mp3

This is the same riff, played twice in a row, double tracked both times, but it is distributed accross my guitar tracks like this:

upload_2018-10-24_0-13-30.png


So the first time you hear 5 guitars (melody left + right, root note left + right, root note center - I guess technically that means it's tripple tracked?), and for the second half I have put the root note left and right into the same shreddage 2 instances that have the melody. It should sound slightly different (or at least I'm imagining it does). Which approach makes more sense?

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/guitar-chord-dry-mp3.15946/][/AUDIOPLUS]

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/guitar-chord-distorted-mp3.15947/][/AUDIOPLUS]

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/riff-a-b-mp3.15949/][/AUDIOPLUS]
 

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