A few days ago I tested a very good sample library, the Century Brass, now is the time to move on to something new.
Time to review the Century Strings, another 8Dio Kontaktntakt sample library, this time, it’s all about strings, baby!
So, I just grab their Century Strings! The download itself is pretty big, but, again, didn’t take that long for it to download.
Once downloaded, I’ve found out, that we have separate libraries for strings sections and for Sordino strings.
Both contain patches for all five string sections, that means you’ve got different patches for second violins and first violins. That’s something rather unique!
So, let’s dive in and see what’s great about these instruments!
The user interface is very much like the one found in the century brass library, and by that, I mean, it’s just the same GUI, except for the mixer.
Instead of a dedicated convolution reverb section, we’ve got two different mic mixers: one for the room mics and the other for spot mics.
As with the Century Brass, we’ve got a Decca-tree array, and a Wide stereo array -probably two matched mics in an A/B configuration.
Also, there’s like a preset mixed balance from both signals, which straight away sounds great.
The other mixer is dedicated to the spot mics, with three different close mics, all of which sound very close and kinda dry, I mean, you can almost feel the bow on the strings.
You’ll find the same clever articulation slots, like in the Century Brass, the same EQ and the same FX page with all those lovely rack units.
As I’ve mentioned before, the Strings library, consist of all five string sections found in an orchestra: 4 Basses, 4 Cellos, 6 Violas, 4 Second Violins, and 6 First Violins.
So, having two sets of violins means great flexibility! I mean, don’t just think of them as 1st and 2nd violins only!
You can think of a bigger and a smaller violin ensemble, and yes, two pieces can make a remarkable sonic difference!
These are amazingly recorded samples, and you’ll find every articulation you’d need, from spccatos, to staccatos, legato, double bow – which is a great articulation for more realistic double attack of a single note, sustain patches, pizzicato, Bartok, tremolos, trills, harmonic patches -great for scoring horror or suspense stuff, Col lengo, ricochet, etc, etc.
Legato patches are amazing, and one cool feature about it is that the velocity controls the amount of glissando between one note and the next.
Another remarkable feature is how well the dynamics work, I mean, it sounds really authentic, I mean, as authentic as world-class players playing live, right in front of you.
These are super flexible patches, very realistic, and they sound amazing!
Maybe, one thing some of you might miss is a straight strings patch with all the strings together.
This could be great for unisons and laying some chords, but, if you work programming each part on its own, these are amazing samples!
You can control the room, so, if you need something very dry, just turn off the Dacca-tree and wide mics and you are good to go, and also the other way around!
If you need something that’s really roomy, just turn off the close mics, and you’re done!
Speaking of mics, like in the Century brass, you can route each mic to a different Kontakt output, so, you might wanna route all your close mics individually, but then, all room mics to the same output. Again, great flexibility.
The Sordino library is a bit different in the number of pieces, but, not that much, just 3 basses instead of 4 and 5 violas instead of 6, 4 cellos, 4-second violins and 6 first violins.
Same mic configuration, and mostly the same articulations. The sound, however, it’s totally different, so, again, another option for your sound palette.
Not gonna get much into detail of the FX section, as is exactly the same found in Century Brass which I reviewed recently.
This is a world-class strings library and it sounds exactly like that, but also, these are really flexible instruments, you can tweak almost every single thing, room mics, close mics, articulations you want to load.
Also, having two sets of violins, it makes this library really flexible, and the added Sordino strings, are a bonus, for more options in your sonic palette.
Anyway, this sounds great, and by that I mean world-class.
So, if you work in composing for movies, tv, theatre plays or anything that will need great orchestral brass instruments and ensembles, well, my friend: this is definitely for you!
More Details: Century Strings[author image=”https://www.producerspot.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/piggy-sounds-logo.jpg” ]Rafael Hofstadter is a recording and mixing engineer and sound designer with 10+ years experience in playing and programming synths, recording, mixing and producing pop/rock/folk albums. He also runs piggysounds.com.[/author]