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Spitfire Studio Brass

dzilizzi

I just hang around pretending I know something
Thanks Land of Missing Parts. I'm not sure about EastWest. Their presence was EastWestLurker and he didn't really leave VIC, he just left EastWest and became Ashermusic. Shame to hear about Cinesamples, yes it appears they haven't posted since 2017. I wonder why they left?
Nick Phoenix shows up every so often. Maybe he's the one that mostly left?
 

sostenuto

Big NKS Fan !
="paulthomson, post: 4384655, member: 20262"]Hey Allan,

They tend to be programmed to suit the dynamic of the room so they will vary slightly - but if you want to replace the curve you can here:

P
Thank-you for this follow-thru. Quite pleased and impressed with your earlier personal statement. It is well done, and key to personal WL decision process over next few days. :thumbsup:

You are far more involved, as a professional, than I as a serious home-studio enthusiast, musician. Many years on Reaper Forum have exposed some similar 'excesses' as noted here.
To each his /her own style, but a shame when discussion departs from honest, capable critique of library capabilities. Such enormous talents present here and so much to be gained from your /their regular contributions.


Looking forward to more of your presence, when other responsibilities subside.

 

jbuhler

Senior Member
After a few hours of playing with Studio Brass Pro I'm generally pleased. Especially at the lower/lowest dynamic layer the sampling and instruments are simply stunning.
I agree that the lowest dynamic layer of the legatos is pretty good on most instruments (horn 1 remains a problem—even when it doesn't sound bad, it doesn't sound like a horn to me). The higher dynamic layers are often good as well, but the layer transitions can be quite bumpy. As @paulthomson's example shows, even the very bumpy one on Trumpet 1 can be neatly finessed if you play with an understanding of how the patch is constructed, and there are two trumpet legato patches so what doesn't work on one, will likely work on the other. E.g., if you need to write a lot of major sevenths, probably try trumpet 1.

Despite saying that the lowest dynamic layer on the legatos sounds good, I wouldn't say the ensemble has a great sound in the softest dynamic layer on the open longs, however. For one thing, it lacks that velvety sound that I associate with soft brass. For another the longs (as compared to the legatos) don't generally have as much space to work with on the modwheel before it gets rather brassy. Sometimes that's a nice effect—swelling into brassiness—but I find working gentle swells to be a bit harder to produce than they should be because the modwheel range of the lower dynamic layer is so limited. It's another case where if I end up using the library a lot for this kind of thing I'll need to make an alternate patch that expands the modwheel range of the lower dynamic layer.

I haven't decided what I think of the calibration of the shorts. They sound ok in an initial quick listen but are rather soft throughout the range and I have to move the volume quite a lot to get them to balance with my other libraries. I may have to recalibrate with a custom curve.

Some other things I like about the library: the muted patches. The muted and stopped longs sound nice and are rather different from those in SSB, so they make a good complement. Studio Brass also has a bunch of other muted articulations including shorts, sfz long, etc. One of the real incentives for me in getting this library (as a supplement to SSB) was all the muted articulations, which are lacking in SSB. (I would still be most interested in a mute supplement to SSB similar to Berlin Brass EXP B.)

I also quite like the euphonium, especially in the upper register, and this was another draw for me as a supplement to SSB. I haven't yet played extensively with it, so there may be hidden issues but on initial listen it seems a winner. The tenor trombones have what I'd call a lighter but more trombony edge than the more regal sounding trombones in SSB. It makes for an interesting contrast playing something like the Pilgrim's chorus passage in Tannhäuser Overture with Studio Brass and SSB. Very different performances, but each compelling in its own way. I'll be interested to see how the Studio Brass trombones work in context.

I haven't yet got through the tubas, cimbasso, bass trombone or auxiliary trumpets. I also haven't worked much on the mixing end, but initial experiments suggest that they will take quite a bit more work to fit with the SF libraries recorded in the big hall than some of the other SF libraries recorded in Air One.
 

re-peat

Senior Member
Paul,

You don't seriously think that I buy libraries, Spitfire's or others, to then come here at VI-C, or anywhere else, and waste countless hours of everybody's time (as well as my own) knowingly misrepresenting these products by making them sound as bad as I possible can, only because I stumbled upon a few flaws? What could possibly be my reasoning for doing such a stupid and nasty thing? I mean, even if I'm right about it, it's still a very unkind and dishonourable thing to do, I find, and if I'm wrong, the whole thing would blow up in my face and my days as someone I quite enjoy being would be instantly over. As I answered in another thread (after someone else threw that same inane accusation at me): what you suggest, that is not who I am. And you, I would have hoped, should know that.

No, what actually happens is, that I come across these flaws when trying to make music with these libraries. It really is as simple and innocent as that. And in the case of the Studio Series, I have come across so many so frequently — and several of them demonstrating such baffling carelessness, sloppyness and cutting-corners-y-ness —, that I eventually decided to share my mounting disappointment with the multitude. One of the reasons I didn't contact Support first, is because I'm of the opinion that these libraries are unfixable. Well, some of it is, of course, but not its worst weaknesses. If I had any say in the matter, the Studio Series threesome would be recalled and completely redone from scratch. The other reason was that I felt the insult was too grave to remain private.

Making so much heavy weather in public about a library is very uncharacterstic for me though. I’m not averse to causing a bit of a stir now and then if there’s good reason, but libraries with a few flaws in them don’t qualify as good reason. I positively dislike it when someone else complains excessively, and I sure as hell don't like it when I have to do it myself. The aggrevation, the upset, the irritation (on both sides of the fence), the whining and the ranting, the time lost, ... No, thank you. I say all this because it means that a product has to be really-really-really bad, in my opinion and experience, before I will do what I've been doing these past couple of weeks in the context of the Studio Series: exposing it for the effrontery that I believe it is.

Been buying huge quantities of sample libraries, of all shapes and sizes, for 20 years or more, most of which are liberally infested with short-comings, annoyances and bugs, and in all my time at VI-C — that's also more than 15 years by now — I've only railed against products 4 times with the same unpleasant intensity as I now muster to rail against the Studio Series. (I can name you the occasions, but I think you know already what some of them are, and then you also know that you're in pretty lousy company here: the worst of the worst, two developers excepted.)

You don't have to tell me that all libraries are imperfect and that they all can be made to sound bad. I know. I’ve known for more than 20 years. And the thing is: in 99% of the cases, I don't mind. I really don't. I understand. I accept. And I'm prepared for it anyway. I've learned to solve problems and find work-arounds for whatever problem a library throws at me ever since the days, late 90's, of Advanced Orchestra, the EMU Proteus-libraries and Vitous' first libraries. I actually like the challenge, believe it or not. And I'm pretty good at it too.

But the Studio Series, I fear, cross a line where that pleasant game of challenges and clever work-arounds no longer applies. It's the line beyond which decency, integrity, pride and respect have made way for complacency, cheapness, arrogance and disdain. A line which I always believed Spitfire — a company, and people, for which and for whom I used to have immense respect, affection even, and near endless loyalty (there's still a lot of it left, but it is dwindling) — would never cross. But it appears I was a little naïve.

See, as much as I am annoyed by the Studio Series' problems, it's the philosphy and the attitude behind it, that annoys and worries me much more.

Spitfire gave us Sable, the Bespokes and a handful of truly excellent BML libraries, for christ’s sake; an amazing run of unrivalled products which are, as I described them elsewhere, wither-proof classics and summits of the art and craft of orchestral sampling. To hear you now defending — with rather unconvincing, generic stock arguments and that inevitable hint of emotional appeal — the painfully embarrassing Studio Series, as if belonging in the same illustre league as Spitfire’s triumphs of yesteryear, is not only a perplexingly surreal experience but, more than that, a very, very sad one. It doesn't bode well for the future, if you don't mind me saying so.

The Paul Thompson I communicated with some years ago would NEVER have agreed on the release of the Studio Series. “No way!”, his cry would have been heard saying as it thundered through Spitfire’s corridors, studios, editing rooms and car parks. I will never forget — seriously — your rapture, and the underlying passion which it showed, when you described to me the first time you and Christian heard Sable come out of the speakers; a sound, you told me, you guys had been been waiting for for 20 years, and what a glorious moment that was. The excitement dripped from your every word in that mail. That moment, to me, encapsulated everything that Spitfire is, or at least used to be, about. (I’m aware I have no business telling all these things and according so much weight to the past, but I do because I was so impressed by it, and also because this whole discussion is so important to me.)

I can’t imagine anyone at Spitfire ever sharing, like you did when Sable was born, his or her excitement upon first hearing the Studio Series ooze limply out of the speakers. Not if they’re honest. These are weak libraries, Paul. 'Utter crap', I agree, was an uncalled-for exaggeration on my part, but it was the somewhat tense discussion of yesterday that made me write that. I apologize for it. But that is the *only* thing I apologize for. I resolutely and unwaveringly stand by everything else I've written and by every second of the audio examples I posted. Please, take it seriously.

With still a lot of love and undiminished gratitude: all the best to you, Christian and everyone at Spitfire.

_
 
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Sean

I don't know what I'm talking about
I agree that the lowest dynamic layer of the legatos is pretty good on most instruments (horn 1 remains a problem—even when it doesn't sound bad, it doesn't sound like a horn to me).
...
I also quite like the euphonium, especially in the upper register, and this was another draw for me as a supplement to SSB.
Agreed the horn does not really sound like a horn to me (I still have yet to find anything that beats the horns in EW Hollywood Brass), but the euphonium sounds quite good.
 

jbuhler

Senior Member
I'm really liking the tuba and horns here. This would be a steal at the price imo... I am beginning to crumple in the face of the audio, really impressive imo.
TBH, I find the horns to be the weakest instrument in this library by far. So if you like the horns, I'd say you will very much like the library as a whole. The non-legato horn patches are, however, much better than the legato patches.

The bells up patches are suitably raucous, especially in the two solo horns. (I haven't yet done a side by side comparison of the bells up patches in SSB). I also like the very muffled sound of the stopped horns. The long sfz is nice both open and stopped.
 

ionian

Member
It's kind of telling that Paul came here and tried to shift this around to how they're the victims because people are mean to them and criticize the work people there do, instead of trying to fix the problem and tightening up QC and policing the ideas there more to be on the level of their past quality.

But then again this is the company that released the Hans Zimmer Piano and when there was a universal outcry about how substandard the quality of it was, Spitfire responded by disabling comments on the youtube video to silence the critics rather than attempt to fix what was wrong with it.
 

Parsifal666

I don't even own a DAW, I'm just a troll.
TBH, I find the horns to be the weakest instrument in this library by far. So if you like the horns, I'd say you will very much like the library as a whole. The non-legato horn patches are, however, much better than the legato patches.

The bells up patches are suitably raucous, especially in the two solo horns. (I haven't yet done a side by side comparison of the bells up patches in SSB). I also like the very muffled sound of the stopped horns. The long sfz is nice both open and stopped.
You know, there is an earlier post that reminded me of how good that EWHB is. And it can be an eminently malleable, dry library. It has balls, but lower velocity dynamics can be quite pleasing there as well. In fact, I'm going to break out those horns and tubas today. A really good library.
 

Alex Fraser

Senior Member
It's kind of telling that Paul came here and tried to shift this around to how they're the victims because people are mean to them and criticize the work people there do, instead of trying to fix the problem and tightening up QC and policing the ideas there more to be on the level of their past quality.
I think you're reaching there, sorry.
I believe Paul is genuine about his products and I believe re-peat is genuine in his beliefs. It's a difference of opinion, nothing more. I don't think it's helpful to start up a narrative where Spitfire is trying to protect it's interests like a slippery PR company. That'll send the thread downhill fast.

We have a healthy conversation going between the devs and users. Let's try to keep it that way!
 
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StillLife

Senior Member
Dd

I think you're reaching there, sorry.
I believe Paul is genuine about his products and I believe re-peat is genuine in his beliefs. It's a difference of opinion, nothing more. I don't think it's helpful to start up a narrative where Spitfire is trying to protect it's interests like a slippery PR company. That'll send the thread downhill fast.
Absolutely agree.
 

AlexanderSchiborr

Senior Member
Probably its simply that spitfire released too many libraries these days. I think it is better to release less but quality products which are total ironed out in design or at least a huge attempt towards this. I mean look at products from Wallbank. He didn´t released much but all he released was great stuff through the bank, or things from Jasper Blunk. Regarding the pure assessment of the studio series which piet did and I am very behind him as I think as well that the series could be much better in many points. And I tell you what: If Piet wouldn´t care for spitfire he wouldn´t do all that examples and comments. He has a big love for spitfire and it hurts him which I read out of his comments a lot, at least for me.
 
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Land of Missing Parts

flibbertigibbet
Making so much heavy weather in public about a library is very uncharacterstic for me though._
Piet, what brass and, for that matter, winds don't you hate? Since at the end of the day, hating stuff doesn't get the music written.

In this post I believe you dismissed every woodwind library in existence, which is helpful info up to a point. But after all the judgement has been dispensed you still have to load something into your DAW.

EDIT: I came across a post where Piet actually did name the brass he doesn't hate. :emoji_sunglasses:
 
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AlexanderSchiborr

Senior Member
Piet, what brass and, for that matter, winds don't you hate? Since at the end of the day, hating stuff doesn't get the music written.

In this post I believe you dismissed every woodwind library in existence, which is helpful info up to a point. But after all the judgement has been dispensed you still have to load something into your DAW.
Well I don´t think he hates it, does he? :) Well, its dissapointment which speaks there, but hate...come one..I don´t think that this term serves quite accurate here..
 

gussunkri

Member
Because sample libraries do not have demos, my decisions are shaped by reviews, walkthroughs and forum posts to a much higher degree than with e.g. plug-ins. Luckily for Spitfire, the posts and examples that push me away from the studio series push me towards the symphonic range so in the end, Spitfire may make more money off of me because of Re-peat. (Paul sure could use the extra money. That new studio he is building looks expensive and FANTASTIC!)
 

Land of Missing Parts

flibbertigibbet
Well I don´t think he hates it, does he? :) Well, its dissapointment which speaks there, but hate...come one..I don´t think that this term serves quite accurate here..
Instead of "hate" let's say "strongly look down upon".

As in this post "[The] Virtual Woodwind Land, to me, is a dull, barren waste of musically unsatisfying and sonically inferior efforts that will compromise just about every phrase you give to them and every orchestration they’re part of."

He's no shrinking violet when it comes to judging harshly.
 
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AlexanderSchiborr

Senior Member
What are your thoughts on this library, Alexander? I ask because I value your opinion.
Oh mate, my thoughts were very diverse tbh... I dont fire more heat into the thread, so I say something positive here: I liked or still like the Studio or room which SFA recorded their studio series. I am loving smaller venues which let you get a great direct and very clear sound which lets hear all the details in orchestration. I think also the slight vintage touch which the room gives to the woodwinds sound great.
 

handz

Senior Member
Thanks Land of Missing Parts. I'm not sure about EastWest. Their presence was EastWestLurker and he didn't really leave VIC, he just left EastWest and became Ashermusic. Shame to hear about Cinesamples, yes it appears they haven't posted since 2017. I wonder why they left?
Would like to know too, their libraries were usually very well received here and the guys from the Cinesamples were always cool.
 
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