I've always wanted access to
decent orchestral plug-ins, so I can try my hand at scoring, and utilize them for various ideas, but I've always been stuck with the various included plug-ins from Ableton, or Logic, or some free packs like the strings that are included in LABS. However, recently, Spitfire Audio has released a new Orchestral plug-in, with samples recorded by the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and an awesome UI. It normally runs $50, but is available for free for anyone; all you have to do is participate in a survey, and then wait two weeks, and Spitfire will send you a link, or make the download available in their app, if you already have that. If you're interested, check it out here on Spitfire’s Website. The strings are decent, though as with all digital strings, you have to sort of layer things to get a realistic sound, as the way the samples start never feels exactly like a real player. I think with more expensive plug-ins this has been solved, but those can run between $1000 to $2000, which is CRAZY if you're not a professional, or don't have access to a company or patron to buy them.
BBC Symphony Orchestra Plug-In UI
As you can see in the image above, the UI is super cool,
showing you the full orchestra as if they were in a performance venue. You can click on each section (violins, violas, cellos, trumpets, trombones, tubas, oboes, piccolos, flutes, etc. etc.) and then choose various articulations (most offer a legato/staccato, though the strings and some percussion instruments have other options, like pizz. and tremolo). This idea here isn't really a song, just an attempt to use essentially each of the sections of the orchestra, so you can hear the samples. The basic progression is just 8 chords, divided up amongst all the sections: Cmin, Bmaj, Cmin, F#min, then Cmin, Bmaj, Abmaj, and finally Fsus4, before repeating. I'm particularly impressed with the horns and the woodwinds; in most orchestral packs, those are the worst sounds, as it is super hard to replicate brass and woodwinds. If they use real samples, often packs will be awkward to play, and not sound real, but Spitfire did a particularly good job with making this sound great and be musical with minimal effort. I will DEFINITELY be using these more, and attempting to create some more complete pieces, so stay tuned!
Hope you enjoy the new sounds! Definitely check out the plug-in here on Spitfire’s Website! Thanks for listening!
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