Synchron-ized Special Edition

syrinx

New Member
I have the old SE+ versions with MIRx. Yesterday I bought the new Synchronized SE vol 1. In my initial comparison of the two versions, the new one sounds better - but it feels like a bit like a sidegrade compared to using MIRx (although it does sound a bit better than MIRx). It would definitely be a no-brainer for someone who has SE but no MIRx extension.

The biggest improvement seems to be the brass. They were the weakest link of the "classic" VSL samples, so this is improvement feels great. The piano is also great, I'm glad they included that (it's worth the 35€ upgrade cost alone in my opinion).

I will have to compare the old and new versions a bit more before I decide to upgrade the whole SE library.

I don't know if I'm a big fan of the new UI, the look feels a bit gimmicky and "cheap" to me - but maybe I'm getting old?
 

Ben

VSL Support
The biggest improvement seems to be the brass. They were the weakest link of the "classic" VSL samples, so this is improvement feels great.
Yes, I had often the problem with the SE or the full version to get the brass right. They were often just to weak. But with the brass in Syn SE this is no longer a problem. Makes it easier to mix.

Btw: Did you know that with Vol. 2 you will get Synchron percussion instruments? I missed them when I first studied the product page. They are so awsome. Try comparing them to the synchronized percussion; start with the timpani. :faint:

Regarding the new UI: you get used to it, I think. It looks more modern and clean, but what I like about the player is the better performance, the effects and quicker loading times.
 
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Ben

VSL Support
How is the new piano? Is it worth to upgrade?
Do you know any piano library for 35€ that includes "only" 30 velocity layers, two stereo mic positions, combined with the VSL quality? This piano has so many samples it needs 32GB on your SSD. What I want to say with this: other sampled pianos with these qualities wouldn't be called a "light" version and would have had a much higher price imo.
 
OP
VgsA

VgsA

Abel Vegas
They shouldn't be exactly the same. Several clues say that the library included in Kontakt is a subset of the First Edition. The SE should be derived from the Opus 1, that is derived from the then-developing Pro Edition.

If I understand correctly, the First Edition was then included in the Pro Edition and then in the current Cube/Super Package. So, the base sound should be the same, even if the samples are the earlier ones, now replaced by versions at a higher resolution, longer, with more layers and a ton more articulations.
I didn't do an A/B comparison, but tbh I never really used Kontakt's VSL in a production. I did mess around with the legato scripts back in the day but having the ''real deal'' was like... what's the purpose?

BTW, something REALLY cool from them (and I didn't expect this) was adding the humanizer feature to the SE. It really adds realism to the instruments, and messing around I think it has potential for sound design. Also, having your own ''highschool marching band'' is fun lol
 

rudi

Active Member
My quick take on Synchron-ized Special Edition Vol 1. I haven't tried it next to the original SE Vol 1, so it's quite subjective:

- the source sounds don't feel radically different from the original but the impulses make a differnce (see below...)

- the convolution reverb includes three variations: Close, Classic and Distant. They do add to the original edition, giving it a more organic, less sterile sound. They come in instrument specific versions. I couldn't tell if they were actually different impulses or simply edited ones, but they sounded good, especially on the string shorts, and the brass.

- the instruments are also come pre-EQ'd which is a nice touch.

- I liked the new interface (Synchron player). It feels less cluttered than the original VI Player. I also liked the "humanise" feature that lets you select from a large selection of pitch envelopes, e.g "Fall to Tune Fast V1" etc. They add to the organic nature of the very clean original samples. It's also very controllable - you can choose the type and the amount can also be assigned to controllers . In the case of the string ensembles, which I like a lot, you can assign different humanise settings to each section. That works well on the brass too, and the timp (select "Rise to Tune Slow V1" for example).

- You can choose between mono or poly legato, altho' I found it hard to distinguish between them.

- The Orchestral Percussion, Drums, etc. benefit from the Distant impulse.

- I couldn't find a way to layer instruments in the Synchron Player, but I may have missed it.

- The Piano comes with its own player and interface. On the main Play tab, you get six presets: Concert, Intimate, Player, Pop, Ambient and Mighty. I was rather taken with the Intimate, Player and Ambient variants. You can adjust the Reverb amount, patch Volume, Dynamic response. You also get control over the Body (perceived size), Sympathetic resonance, and Timbre shift (from very dark to very bright). You can also adjust the MIDI response, Half-Pedal loudness (50% by default), and the amount of Pedal Noise. Finally, can adjust the tuning (440Hz by default), octave (-4 to +4) and Semitone (-12 to +12).
On the Mix tab you can adjust between two channels (Close and Room-Mix) in terms of volume/balance, mono and stereo. The Edit tab among other things lets you select a Global dynamic range as well as MIDI response, which is really handy depending on your controller keyboard. There is extensive control over EQ, dynamic range, tuning over individual notes or range of notes (I didn't venture too far in this quick review).


Conclusions:
- the "Synchron" impulses are nice and make a real difference to the tone and spatial qualities of the original instruments.
- The Synchron player, felt fresh and modern, and had some really useful features, particularly the humanise feature.
- The Piano sounds very good - and really deep and customisable. I feel as if I have only barely touched on all its possibilities.
- If you you are an existing SE Vol 1 user, the EUR36 upgrade price is a no-brainer... the Piano on its own is worth it.
 

shawnsingh

Active Member
You can choose between mono or poly legato, altho' I found it hard to distinguish between them.
I don't think there is anything different in the sound, just whether the instrument allows you to pay multiple notes simultaneously or not in legato mode.
 

Ben

VSL Support
I don't think there is anything different in the sound, just whether the instrument allows you to pay multiple notes simultaneously or not in legato mode.
You will hear the difference if you listen closly and overlap the notes. If you program a legato line, mono legato will give a better and more convincing legato transition, because the previous note will be stopped independent of overlapping notes.
 

shawnsingh

Active Member
You will hear the difference if you listen closly and overlap the notes. If you program a legato line, mono legato will give a better and more convincing legato transition, because the previous note will be stopped independent of overlapping notes.
Yes that's totally fair :). But I was interpreting the word "sound" that rudi was referring to as being the innate sound of the samples, and overlapping notes as a playing technique.
 

JPQ

Senior Member
I have the old SE+ versions with MIRx. Yesterday I bought the new Synchronized SE vol 1. In my initial comparison of the two versions, the new one sounds better - but it feels like a bit like a sidegrade compared to using MIRx (although it does sound a bit better than MIRx). It would definitely be a no-brainer for someone who has SE but no MIRx extension.

The biggest improvement seems to be the brass. They were the weakest link of the "classic" VSL samples, so this is improvement feels great. The piano is also great, I'm glad they included that (it's worth the 35€ upgrade cost alone in my opinion).

I will have to compare the old and new versions a bit more before I decide to upgrade the whole SE library.

I don't know if I'm a big fan of the new UI, the look feels a bit gimmicky and "cheap" to me - but maybe I'm getting old?
New gui is not so good. and brass is allready good for non cinematic uses. and my friend when i showed vsl special edition 1 standard for years ago for him sayed (i selected seenttila patches like violin section,flute and trumpet trumpet is best he heared i know he is maye even less serious for virtual orhestra uses than me. and i also like how vsl brass sounds exepct french horn. non i get today these vsl special edition vol 1 standard and extended in synchronied verisons in today.
 

paulmatthew

Senior Member
FYI my installer went so far and says SSD required to install Synchron samples . Luckily I have a few but I did not see this anywhere in system requirements . It only says SSD recommended which is not the case a the time of install.
 

Manuel Stumpf

Active Member
Well there goes that idea lol! Thanks :)
In the EpicOrchestra2.0 (included with Vienna Ensemble Pro) you can see the EQ curves applied to the different instrument patches.
If you can also have a look at the EQ curves here in the Special Edition Synchronized (can anyone having it check if you can see these curves here too?), you could take advantage of this. You just have to apply the same settings in your own EQ plugin. Of course you would still miss the reverb though.
 

Ben

VSL Support
Not only can you see the EQ but also can you alter it. There are different eq-settings depending on the sound preset you are choosing.
 

Manuel Stumpf

Active Member
Not only can you see the EQ but also can you alter it. There are different eq-settings depending on the sound preset you are choosing.
Thank you. I just wondered. Not that the EQ is directly applied to the samples. Obviously it is done like in the Epic Orchestra 2.0, it uses the built in EQ of the Synchron Player and you can see as well as alter these settings.
 

paulmatthew

Senior Member

Ihnoc

Active Member
BTW, something REALLY cool from them (and I didn't expect this) was adding the humanizer feature to the SE. It really adds realism to the instruments, and messing around I think it has potential for sound design. Also, having your own ''highschool marching band'' is fun lol
To note, this was also a feature of Vienna Instruments Pro 2 plugin/software which is a separate purchase to the VI Standard or Full libraries as well as the VI Special Edition. If you own that plugin you can use the humanize function with the VI Special Edition libraries. The Synchron-ized version doesn't appear to have any new functionality compared to Vienna Instruments Pro 2. Nevertheless, it is a very useful feature and now you don't have to pay extra for it (or something like Synchron MirX)!

VSL released a quite excellent video that discusses a number of features that are now also present in the Syncrhon player in a musical context here, which I found quite enlightening:
 
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