I've been saying this for years. Samples have strengths and weaknesses.Use them best for their strengths and figure clever ways to turn weakness to an advantage.Remember that you shouldn't try to force samples to sound in a way they were not designed to sound. Hear the samples and adapt yourself to what you can do with them.
I’m a big fan of Spitfire’s SCS. For symphony orchestra needs, I have migrated over to OT.Actually a lot of the paid composers I know have switched over to OT and Sample Modeling. That's far from a knock against Spitfire (I personally use both SA and OT one helluva lot).
Ah yes, of course, Sandy!Don’t forget Sandy.
It's called marketing and it works for a reason if done right. If it wouldn't help pay the bills and they relied on still paying the bills somehow, they would do something else.Spitfire make some great libraries, no doubt, but they're certainly not alone in that. I own some great libraries from several companies, all of which I enjoy and appreciate. However, Spitfire do, to me at least, seem somehow different from the rest. It's a company that is so open and transparent, I feel like I know them personally, and support what they're doing, though I've never met any of them. To illustrate, ask yourself these questions about your favorite developers - I've answered below in relation to Spitfire, and could answer SOME questions positively for most companies, but I wouldn't be able to answer ALL questions for any other company:
- how many companies could you name the co-founders for? (Christian, Paul)
- how many could you name the sound engineer? (Jake Jackson)
- how many could you name the lead musicians for? (Oliver, Homay)
- how many could you name >1 support desk person for? (Ben, Jack)
- how many do you know that used to take charity donations, and now just pay it themselves?
- how many have free instrument giveaways, and you could genuinely produce decent music using only these instruments? (LABS)
- how many have produced libraries in collaboration with numerous artists you genuinely admire outside of samples (Eric Whitacre, Hans Zimmer, Olafur Arnolds)
- how many have developed a separate community-based sample library, that is made freely available to the public? (PianoBook)
- how many have a whole series of videos, with insights into studies, artists, and techniques? (Creative Cribs, 1-1 Interviews, Quick Tips)
- how many developers are active composers as well as sample developers? (Paul, Christian)
- how many have interesting competitions in which they give away their products (Apex; Christmas tombola)
- how many developers do you know who gave away their Mac to someone on Twitter (Christian)
- how many developers show you ways to develop music that could entirely negate their own company's profits? (Modular Mondays)
- how many have developed a separate vlog, only semi-related to the main company, and is not about selling more products, but mainly about supporting composers, and the issues they face? (Christian)
- how many developers arrange an impromptu meetup, go for a nice walk and a chat, film it so everyone can feel some level of participation, and then he pays for the beers in the pub? (Christian)
- how many could you answer positively for ALL of the above? (Me... just 1 - Spitfire!)
Cinematic Studio can be responsive as well. Indeed, various developers show a customer-focus that is to be commended (and a few don't). Where Spitfire stands apart with all their outreach is to usher us all into this world of film/media production, for which they have more experience than most of us. Of course it is good for them - the overall effect is "We're your friends and we know this industry well .. and just listen to this excellent demo of this library" ... and lots of us are clicking on "Add to Cart". In doing so, they are expanding this world. I have no regrets - they seem authentic and generous and I have learned a lot.it can be a cold dispassionate exchange, and so feeling some shared existence and shared enjoyment, is an important part of the process.
Well, you can call it marketing if you like, but I think that's a little cynical. Let me give you an example: Christian noticed that throwing an object across a frozen lake created an interesting noise. So, he got up at 3am so that he could capture the sound in complete silence, and because temperature affects the pitch, and recorded it. Then, back at his home studio, he crafted this recording into a virtual instrument, which he made freely available, and walked the audience through how to do this in EXS - watch it here. He then made this available as a free instrument. Note: that's a leading sample developer, teaching people how to make their own samples (literally, here's which buttons to press in Logic). Now, you can call that marketing if you want to, but I think you'd have to question every benevolent act that people do, and assume an ulterior motive. Even if you're right, and that's all marketing, well, it still something we benefit from directly, whether or not we choose to buy more software from them. I think at some point, its more parsimonious to just say this is a decent guy, who likes to give back to the community that has given him a good opportunity in life.It's called marketing and it works for a reason if done right. If it wouldn't help pay the bills and they relied on still paying the bills somehow, they would do something else.
They have the freedom to be like this because it works. It's not a one way road.