Spitfire Symphonic Series Opinions?

5Lives

Senior Member
Hi all,

The lively debate on Spitfire’s BBCSO has highlighted a few things for me:

- The library has a number of sampling shortcomings in terms of editing, dynamic layers, etc. It seems unlikely that Spitfire will be able to address these anytime soon (especially if it requires more recording) without re-using existing samples and modifying them, which is not a real solution.
- The cohesion of the library is really nice - no need to spend a ton of time blending instruments recorded in a variety of spaces.

Based on this, I was contemplating if their Symphonic Series (plus their percussion library) would address both things - more in-depth sampling and hopefully fewer issues / inconsistencies and that cohesive sound. For folks that own it, what are your thoughts and reviews?

Berlin is the other option but expensive or wait for CSS to finish the sections. Not a fan of EastWest’s Hollywood Orchestra.

Cheers!
 

Nemoy

New Member
For me, it's absolutely still the SSO...Symphonic series wins totally. And after countless updates, it just works. And you'll find more satisfied users overall vs the other one. Both have their issues and gripes, but at the end of the day, its always nice to have more colors. Enjoy!
 

ed buller

Senior Member
It has a more symphonic cohesive sound. It doesn't sound like a collection of separate recordings. It feels like they are all in a room playing together. The sound IS it's selling point. Some of the sampling and programming could be better. But that is ALWAYS the case in every library. Some patches are just nailed...others ...not quite. BBSO is no different. but for the very first time it sounds like an orchestra. As you add the sections it builds up in a very natural way. All the instruments just slot together like a jigsaw and make a complete picture. I know AIR lyndhurst well. And I get that the Symphonic series was recorded there. But it's an odd room. It is very wet. It's hard to locate an instrument. It sounds great for massive strings and Huge Brass....but if your after the orchestra sound of most tracking rooms MGM, TODD AO, FOX, Abbey Road..etc...this is it. Very Focused and clear.....everything sharp and full of detail. I honestly don't have another library like it !

best

ed
 

ed buller

Senior Member
For me, it's absolutely still the SSO...Symphonic series wins totally. And after countless updates, it just works. And you'll find more satisfied users overall vs the other one. Both have their issues and gripes, but at the end of the day, its always nice to have more colors. Enjoy!
You Have BBSO ?

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markleake

Recovering sale addict
I don't have BBCSO, but I will say this: all libraries tend to have their strengths and weaknesses.

You can't just say, "oh, this one is the best". Libraries don't work like that.

SSO is fantastic for the wonderful hall atmosphere, but that is also its limiting factor. SSO has its own tone (not just "more reverb") which to me sounds very different to BBC. SSO string performance legatos are great but the shorts are not tight, the woodwinds are great, the brass can be a bit finicky and doesn't turn up to 10, but sounds great too. Their percussion library is one of the best out there, in my opinion, but again with a different tone to BBC's percussion.

With SSO you will need to put more effort in to balance the instruments.

You get more things in BBCSO that you don't get with SSO.

SSO is mature and polished (mostly), more dynamic layers, more articulations (but less consistent between instruments). And dare I say it... the solo horn sounds good in SSO.
 

ed buller

Senior Member
You can't just say, "oh, this one is the best". Libraries don't work like that.
to clarify...i'm NOT saying that. But I am saying IMHO taking into account all the Sample Libraries I own that attempt to sound like a complete Symphony Orchestra in situ.....BBSO is by far the most realistic. Just in terms of reproducing an orchestra in a setting. As individual samples and sections....I don't care...i already have that....What i wanted was a convincing complete orchestra. For me this is it ( so far )

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OP
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5Lives

Senior Member
SSO has almost too many articulations for my personal taste. I like the CSS approach - single master patch containing everything. BBCSO seems to be more inline with this approach.
 

markleake

Recovering sale addict
SSO has almost too many articulations for my personal taste. I like the CSS approach - single master patch containing everything. BBCSO seems to be more inline with this approach.
To be fair, SSO does this also, as much as it can. But yes, too many to fit in just one patch sometimes.
 

shireen

New Member
SSO has almost too many articulations for my personal taste. I like the CSS approach - single master patch containing everything. BBCSO seems to be more inline with this approach.
I do wish that CSS had individual articulation patches though.
 
OP
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5Lives

Senior Member
Paul Thompson’s new video is an interesting comparison of the sound of SSS vs BBCSO Strings. BBCSO does sound good - very cohesive as be says while SSS is more disparate almost.
 

Henu

Senior Member
What do you mean by that? I've got SSS, but I think they're pretty good.
It's the scripting (releases, volumes, etc) and the attacks in the sustains which is my biggest annoyement.

This being said, I'm just currently fighting to get a "LotR"- type of horns out of SSB and boy oh boy am I loosing my marbles with the same issues soon. Especially the fact that there is not a decent marcato in this library. Period. What the hell am I doing with repetitions that have a forced ending note or an overlong tenutos, when there is not a single long note articulation without a swell?

I love the sound of SSO, but CONSISTENCY FOR THE LOVE OF GOD PLEASE CAN I HAVE IT.

PS: The fun part is that after trying out four (!!) different brass libraries, I nailed the part with CSB with a single articulation. >.<