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So... who's got the best timpani?

OleJoergensen

Senior Member
Here a little OT Berlin Percussion EXP A Timpani demo.
It is a mix of Close, Decca, Surround mics. I panned it a bit to the right. Original OT Timpani is recorded to the left.
The Demo is not perfect. Some of the patches has true damping, it needs some more work here.
- Soft mallets
- Medium mallets
- Hard mallets
 

OleJoergensen

Senior Member
Im amazed how good the old QLSO timpany sounds! If I had checked that out, it was not nessecary to buy Berlin Timpani :rolleyes:.
HZ timpani sounds good and dramatic as well but it is more a processed sound, I think.
One of the good features with Berlin Timpani is damping with singel strokes medium and hard mallets.
 

AlexanderSchiborr

Senior Member
Imo there is no such thing as the best timpani. But there are choices and tastes depending on the sound you aim for. Sometimes you like to have a more streamlined, clean timpani, and not with a lot of grit, and then there are exactly cases where you need a lot of ommpf and hall for the sound and composition you have. Still there exists also a my list of my favorites from most to least, I think with percussion it is important that the mics and room somehow captures the resonance depth of the instrument with the room, so here:

1. Cinesamples Percussion Timpani (soft, medium, hard mallets available which gives with the microphones a lot of "mixing" and "performance" options). Imo one of the best if not the best timpani. Sony Stage is imo for that stuff one of the best if not the best, big room resonance but with a nice adsr characteristic with a lot of oompf, splash and very mouldable from ambient to very dry.

2. Spitfire Timpani from the Burgess Percussion. I admit its a love and hate relation I have with that timpani, while I love the tone, I hate the inconsistencies with the stereo panorama, still the sound is massive if you like big hall with classic ambient decca tree recorded orchestra big boom sound. For specific epic stuff (I am not talking about epic modern music) but things from Wagner, Tschaikowsky all that romantic era big symphony stuff really a nice timpani. That thing has a lot of ambience, tail and classic symphony ommpf.

Now the thing which is ass and I think thats a big downside: The timpani is inconsistent and depending on the note you play the positioning is going crazy through the stereo panorama. (there are work arounds for that..though)

3. Eastwest Hollywood Percussion Timpani is a bit on the edge. While I think the tone is nice and can be compared to the CS (regarding the ambience), it lacks of that really loud bang and crack at FFF dynamics what CS has captures somehow really really good. But I like the quiter dyanmics quite a lot and the damped patch also.
 

Syneast

Active Member
I have ranked the timpanis I have, best to not as good:

1. True Strike
2. EWQLSO
3. Rhapsody Orchestral Percussion
4. Kontakt Factory Library
5. Berlin Orchestra Inspire

It's noteworthy that True Strike and EWQLSO are also the lightest on resources, if you compare size per mic.
 

kitekrazy

Senior Member
I don't see any love for VSL here, and they tend to be some of my favorite libraries. I don't have much experience with their timps, what do others think?
I have it. The standard version cost me like $25 as an upgrade from Percussion and More. I've got more than one library and not going to drive myself nuts over which one is the best. I just want ease of use.
 
OP
NoamL

NoamL

Winter <3
Wait... is the timp in Berlin Inspire 1 the same one from Berlin Series Exp A? Because that's the one I've been having trouble working with!
 

Robo Rivard

Senior Member
My favorite timpani is Modwheel's Timphonia. I'm not an orchestral guy, so the pure, close-mic approach of Timphonia suits me well. You also get a lot more "articulations" than any other timp librarie. I also own CinePerc, so my needs are pretty much covered.
 

NYC Composer

Senior Member
For my purposes, I’ve never had to move past the EWQLSO, but I did purchase Rhapsody to have a complete Kontakt library as well. It’s not anything special, but it works well and was reasonably priced. That $48 deal is (was?) really great...I think I bought it for $99.
 

Mark Schmieder

Senior Member
At the risk of repeating myself (another thread?), I'll quickly rank mine again:
  1. Vienna Synchron Player — Adams Artist Alpha (20”, 23”, 26”, 29”, 32”)
  2. Vienna Instruments — Adam
  3. Spitfire Hans Zimmer Percussion (Kontakt)
  4. Spitfire Percussion (Kontakt)
  5. Sonuscore Symphony Series - Percussion (Kontakt)
  6. BFD Orchestral — no rolls
  7. Xsample Library (Kontakt)
  8. UVI Orchestral Suite (Falcon)
  9. Impact Soundworks Rhapsody Orchestral Percussion (Kontakt)
  10. Orchestral Percussion (SampleTank)
  11. Evolution Series: World Percussion: Europe (Kontakt)
  12. Miroslav Philharmonik (SampleTank)
  13. Wavesfactory W-Timpani (Kontakt)
  14. Vir2 Elite Orchestral Percussion (Kontakt)
  15. Quantum Leap Symphonic Orchestra (Play)
  16. Quantum Leap Goliath (Play)
Note that I have the pro edition revamp of Hans Zimmer, which is way more user-friendly and full-featured than the previous edition (HZ01?), but I think I remember seeing almost the same actual sample content for most instruments.

VSL is still my main choice for most projects as it blends so well and cuts through, but HZ usually does as well. I've only soloed the Sonuscore stuff as I've been super-busy since NI Komplete 12 arrived. My BFD Orchestral is up for sale, partly because of the comment "no rolls" that I qualify that ranking with. Great recording quality though, as is Xsample.

Almost everything below that on the list, I have consistently found is either too dark or muffled and/or doesn't cut through the mix -- especially the rolls. Probably the closest mics were still too far away to pick up the warmth of the head sound, thus getting mostly room reverb which quickly gets muddy and loses the distinctness of each hit, blurring the mix and losing the dynamics.
 
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whitewasteland

Senior Member
Wait... is the timp in Berlin Inspire 1 the same one from Berlin Series Exp A? Because that's the one I've been having trouble working with!
I guess the Timps from Inspire 1 are "inspired" from Berlin Percs Exp A, indeed !
But as always with Inspire patches, it is a very light version. The Exp A is 6,2GB alone, according to the official website.

Here is a video from Sascha Knorr :

 

whitewasteland

Senior Member
Just got Drum Fury, and I quite like the Timpanis in there as well !

Here is a little test I made (before my morning coffee, sorry about the playing).

1. Drum Fury "Hard Mallet" patch, raw
2. Same, with a bit of Precedence/Breeze2
3. Layered with the Timps from Ark 3 (Close, AB, Tree)

[AUDIOPLUS=https://www.vi-control.net/community/attachments/drum-fury-timps-mp3.18807/][/AUDIOPLUS]

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/drum-fury-timps-mp3.18807/][/AUDIOPLUS]
 

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Phil Harmony

New Member
Here is my list:

1. NI Symphony Series Percussion (best natural sound and playability)
2. True Strike 1 (wonderful roomy sound and tremolo, but too few RRs)
3. CinePerc (I use this for more powerfull and aggressive sound)

I also own HZ Timpani but I don't use this very often, somehow I just don't like the sound so much, maybe just a matter of personal taste?
 

sekkosiki

Senior Member
I own HOP, Berlin Percussion, ROP, and I'd rank them like this with my experiences with them:

1. Berlin Percussion Timpani: Sounds natural, even the hard hits sound very musical. Wonderful soft dynamics. Lots of articulations. Sometimes hard to make it cut through dense mix.
2. HOP Timpani: Immediate, big sound, easy to play. Loud hits lack just a bit of melodic content in the sound.
3. ROP Timpani: Quite small dynamic scale, doesn't go loud enough.
 

Mark Schmieder

Senior Member
I should clarify that I have been referring to NI Symphony Series Percussion as Sonuscore Symphony Series Percussion as it's the only way I'm likely to develop long-term memories regarding which vendor supplied each member of that series for NI (it's a different vendor for each section!).
 

dariusofwest

Active Member
I own HOP, Berlin Percussion, ROP, and I'd rank them like this with my experiences with them:

1. Berlin Percussion Timpani: Sounds natural, even the hard hits sound very musical. Wonderful soft dynamics. Lots of articulations. Sometimes hard to make it cut through dense mix.
2. HOP Timpani: Immediate, big sound, easy to play. Loud hits lack just a bit of melodic content in the sound.
3. ROP Timpani: Quite small dynamic scale, doesn't go loud enough.
I have those same libs + QLSO and agree with you fully ^_^. In most projects, I tend to use Berlin's timpani most of the time (usually either the normal or hard mallets), haven't really tried the others yet.
 
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