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Spitfire Symphonic Woodwinds vs. Berlin Woodwinds

TintoL

Senior Member
It's the harmonics of the instrument resonating in the studio. This, to me, is a natural characteristic of the instrument. However, some careful EQ'ing can help tone it down if it is too much for you. You won't get that with VSL because of the fact that they recorded it dry. Dry rooms won't pick up on the harmonics as much.
Sorry I didn't see this before. Thanks The Darris for your answer. It calms down my thought that I had bad samples here and there.

VSL has a perfect tuning that at times felt too perfect. Only the humanization feature will help. Nevertheless, having now the spitfire woodwinds, even thought I love the sound of them, I miss that "perfect tuning " because some times I find some notes in some instruments to be a bit too off, specially the release samples. I am sure now, that it's better to combine samples, maybe SSW with orchestral tools woods combined. I also miss the "runs" a lot in the SSW samples. Nevertheless, the runs in VSL were not tempo locked, which was a bummer. You could only get the tempo lock working by using the additional "sequencer" tool that VSL instruments pro has (up to my knowledge). Anyways, thanks again Darris.
 
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The Darris

Senior Member
Sorry I didn't see this before. Thanks The Darris for your answer. It calms down my thought that I had bad samples here and there.

VSL has a perfect tuning that at times felt too perfect. Only the humanization feature will help. Nevertheless, having now the spitfire woodwinds, even thought I love the sound of them, I miss that "perfect tuning " because some times I find some notes in some instruments to be a bit too off, specially the release samples. I am sure now, that it's better to combine samples, maybe SSW with orchestral tools woods combined. I also miss the "runs" a lot in the SSW samples. Nevertheless, the runs in VSL were not tempo locked, which was a bummer. You could only get the tempo lock working by using the additional "sequencer" tool that VSL instruments pro has (up to my knowledge). Anyways, thanks again Darris.

No worries!! Concerning tuning. There are different camps of users out there on that. I used to be the one who wanted the best tuned sound but then I found that you actually get a more realistic sound with those libraries in a mix than you do with perfectly tuned libraries. One library that sticks out is Strezov Sampling's 2 Trombones library. The tuning in that library is pretty bad in some places. Enough to make you cringe when soloed. However, layer those with some other trombones in a mix and suddenly there's some life brought to it. For me, getting the best out of VSL is to layer it with other instruments that are imperfect.
 

Parsifal666

I don't even own a DAW, I'm just a troll.
I wait for the most opportune time to strike

Really though, something about SM that is breathing to me - a living sound, its a much more intimate experience

I've never played a bass flute patch for longer than 15 seconds in my life before I got the rest of SM going...


I am still planning on using SSS... just not in it'd intended purpose

So I guess you really just don't like Sample Modeling?
 

Parsifal666

I don't even own a DAW, I'm just a troll.
Did you see my for sale posts? I was about ready pawn MIR pro and my first born son so I could buy more

I'd say i have an addiction, but I bought all of it... not many instruments left on their immediate plate

That said though, I can still try to get other people hooked on it... if the company does well, they make more products and refine their current ones


Next thing km obsessed with, is the roli seaboard lol

I get it, you're just not a fan of Sample Modeling.
 

Kaufmanmoon

Matthew Kilford
Reading through this again there doesn't seem to be a swing either way on what library was better.
Any thoughts now Berlin is looking to update?
 

ModalRealist

Senior Member
@Kaufmanmoon and @jacobthestupendous: I think it depends on the kind of writing you want to do, as well as your current setup. If you're already working in Air Lyndhurst, then SSW is a no-brainer because Spitfire's symphonic samples are just so wet—like, dripping wet. If you're working with anything drier (CSS, Hollywood, maybe even CineSamples) then BWW is a very, very serious contender. Here's how I think one might choose (there are all "or", not "and")...

Choose SSW if...
  • you work in Air Lyndhurst/with very wet samples;
  • you mainly write in textures;
  • you don't generally write harmony for the woodwinds.
Choose BWW if...
  • you work with drier samples (EW Hollywood, CSS, Berlin, VSL, etc.);
  • you want to write harmonies in the woods;
  • you want to write idiomatic woodwind lines (runs, twirls, etc.).
This isn't to say that SSW can't do idiomatic or that BWW can't do textures, but these are, IMO, their relative strengths. Personally, I just couldn't do without the three separate flutes in BWW, and nor could I do without all the playable runs and the runs builder. But that's because of the kind of music I write.
 

markleake

Recovering sale addict
@Kaufmanmoon and @jacobthestupendous: I think it depends on the kind of writing you want to do, as well as your current setup. If you're already working in Air Lyndhurst, then SSW is a no-brainer because Spitfire's symphonic samples are just so wet—like, dripping wet. If you're working with anything drier (CSS, Hollywood, maybe even CineSamples) then BWW is a very, very serious contender. Here's how I think one might choose (there are all "or", not "and")...

Choose SSW if...
  • you work in Air Lyndhurst/with very wet samples;
  • you mainly write in textures;
  • you don't generally write harmony for the woodwinds.
Choose BWW if...
  • you work with drier samples (EW Hollywood, CSS, Berlin, VSL, etc.);
  • you want to write harmonies in the woods;
  • you want to write idiomatic woodwind lines (runs, twirls, etc.).
This isn't to say that SSW can't do idiomatic or that BWW can't do textures, but these are, IMO, their relative strengths. Personally, I just couldn't do without the three separate flutes in BWW, and nor could I do without all the playable runs and the runs builder. But that's because of the kind of music I write.
Very useful advice! Thanks!

I have SSW, and they are fantastic, but I've started writing more with woods, and have discovered some of their limitations. I've never been especially taken with the flute in SSW, mainly with the runs (too blured) and the longs (the flute isn't as sweet sounding as the flutes in BWW, the second register sounds a bit off to my ears). So I have my eye on BWW, and love the runs it can do... if the demos are any indication. What you describe is exactly what I had expected from BWW based on what others have said also. So yes, BWW are very tempting...

I've noticed also in other pieces where BWW are used that some instuments have a smoother playing style than SSW - the legato sounds a bit more controlled, where in SSW the instuments have more built in swell and dynamics that can't be controlled. Having both, would you say this is true? Maybe I'm just imagining it?
 

Omji

New Member
I have a question...I am about to get the Berlin Woodwinds Exp B, and maybe C. It appears in all reviews, as well as comparison videos, that is sounds much better than the original library. So, if it sounds so much better, is much smaller and much cheaper...what is the purpose of the original library? Maybe some extra mic positions or articulations? Can somebody please explain this?
 

markleake

Recovering sale addict
I have a question...I am about to get the Berlin Woodwinds Exp B, and maybe C. It appears in all reviews, as well as comparison videos, that is sounds much better than the original library. So, if it sounds so much better, is much smaller and much cheaper...what is the purpose of the original library? Maybe some extra mic positions or articulations? Can somebody please explain this?
The Soloist libraries (EXP B and EXP C) are recorded very differently to the main library. They are recorded in a dry recording booth, and have no recorded dynamic layers. They're designed for exposed solo playing, and have built in expression.

The main library is recorded in the Teldex scoring stage, so will have more natural reverb, variation in mic placement, and have multiple dynamic layers recorded (in particular the original instruments that were part of the original library before it was re-packaged as Revive). They're designed for an orchestral mix, and allow you more control over the dynamics/expression.
 

Omji

New Member
The Soloist libraries (EXP B and EXP C) are recorded very differently to the main library. They are recorded in a dry recording booth, and have no recorded dynamic layers. They're designed for exposed solo playing, and have built in expression.

The main library is recorded in the Teldex scoring stage, so will have more natural reverb, variation in mic placement, and have multiple dynamic layers recorded (in particular the original instruments that were part of the original library before it was re-packaged as Revive). They're designed for an orchestral mix, and allow you more control over the dynamics/expression.
Thank you! So, would you still use the original library for Solo parts? I think that would be my main use.
 

axb312

Senior Member
Anyone know when the last update to Spitfire Symphonic WWs was released and what was included in it?
 

jbuhler

Senior Member
Anyone know when the last update to Spitfire Symphonic WWs was released and what was included in it?
May 2019 is the last update. Here is the fix file:
FIX: [PB-400] - Piccolo Legato - A4 to Eb 5 produces an octave below at the attack.
FIX: [PB-471] - Flute Solo - Long Vib ff C6 | melodyne glitch in tail.
FIX: [PB-573] - Stretch control missing from TM patch for solo flute.
FIX: [PB-601] - Bassoon a2 Tenuto has an incorrect sample on the C#1 4th RR.
FIX: [PB-657] - Audible re-tongue/re-attack in Bass Clarinet long.
FIX: [PB-669] - Flute Trills slightly tuning in the last octave.
FIX: [PB-232] - Articulation keyswitches inconsistent in extended techniques.
FIX: [PB-363] - Odd clicking attack at low velocity (~75% dynamics).
 

axb312

Senior Member
May 2019 is the last update. Here is the fix file:
FIX: [PB-400] - Piccolo Legato - A4 to Eb 5 produces an octave below at the attack.
FIX: [PB-471] - Flute Solo - Long Vib ff C6 | melodyne glitch in tail.
FIX: [PB-573] - Stretch control missing from TM patch for solo flute.
FIX: [PB-601] - Bassoon a2 Tenuto has an incorrect sample on the C#1 4th RR.
FIX: [PB-657] - Audible re-tongue/re-attack in Bass Clarinet long.
FIX: [PB-669] - Flute Trills slightly tuning in the last octave.
FIX: [PB-232] - Articulation keyswitches inconsistent in extended techniques.
FIX: [PB-363] - Odd clicking attack at low velocity (~75% dynamics).

Thanks!

Any glaring QC/ bug fixes needed at the moment that you're aware of?
 

jbuhler

Senior Member
Thanks!

Any glaring QC/ bug fixes needed at the moment that you're aware of?
I like the instruments quite a lot aside from the solo clarinet and clarinets a2 and I haven’t found any glaring issues. The flutes a2 and solo flute are not well well calibrated for sharing midi. The articulations across the library are not as uniform as they should be. Many of the instruments are incomplete (clarinet, oboe, English horn) compared to what would be ideal. It’s the inconsistency across the library that would be my main gripe and I’m hoping they address these issues when they finally port them to the SF player. I also have the full set of mics, and those aren’t currently available.

But in general I find they sound reasonably cohesive as a group and I’ve never had to work hard to make them sit with the other instruments of SSO. The solo instruments work reasonably well as orchestral soloists though there are more expressive instruments for real solo or chamber work.
 
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