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SiliconWorldAD says

Most of the music I make is electronic or more live performance, but I’ve been looking for good plugins to make realistic sounds without much success. Anyone know of any good ones? I heard philharmonics is good for strings…

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JohnWiser says

Check Out Eastwest Hollywood Strings, Native Instruments Komplete. Eastwest Has Some Outstanding Plugins As Does NI.Many Developers Create Very Realistic Instruments For Kontakt.

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Coriiander says

Well, there’s tons out there, really. There’s no beginning to name them all. What kind of instruments are you looking for?

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SiliconWorldAD says

Check Out Eastwest Hollywood Strings, Native Instruments Komplete. Eastwest Has Some Outstanding Plugins As Does NI.Many Developers Create Very Realistic Instruments For Kontakt.

Thanks I’ll look into it.


Well, there’s tons out there, really. There’s no beginning to name them all. What kind of instruments are you looking for?
Strings and piano. Sure, there’s tons of “attempts” to be realistic and high quality, but I’ve found very few that are great and produce sounds that I have any confidence would be of high enough quality to be accepted here.
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JBlanks says

Strings and piano. Sure, there’s tons of “attempts” to be realistic and high quality, but I’ve found very few that are great and produce sounds that I have any confidence would be of high enough quality to be accepted here.

Then you haven’t looked very hard. Much of the music produced on this site is done with VSTs/AUs – and there are stunning piano and string libraries out there. EastWest Pianos, Ivory, Vienna, 8dio and so many more produce incredible piano libraries.

Look at EastWest Hollywood Strings, LASS (LA Scoring Strings), Symphobia, Vienna and Albion series for strings (EastWest’s Gypsy has a lovely solo violin, as do many other libs). Top Hwood composers use these tools so should inspire confidence that they will be accepted on AJ. You could literally just buy the 8dio stuff and be set as far as strings and pianos are concerned.

I suggest digging a little deeper and doing a big more research into the subject. There are great options out there and more appearing every year.

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gballx says

Anything by Project Sam, Spitfire Audio, East West, 8DIO – these have been around for a few years now and the market for quality sample library is getting bigger. Yes they are more expensive than other sample libraries but they have the quality that the commercial projects require.

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Coriiander says

As for realisticly sounding instruments, personally I’m using various products of 8Dio, ProjectSAM and EastWest (Hollywood Strings, Brass and Woodwinds for example). It is important to keep in mind that are alot of libraries out there which all have their pros and cons. Many producers use combinations of those libraries. Some libraries just excel in particular articulations; combining them, or even layering them, can yield great results. Yet do understand, there’s no real need to combine or layer them. That would cost alot of money, just saying that some people do. As for the East West stuff; big names like Two Steps From Hell (Nick Phoenix and Thomas Bergersen) use this material extensively. 8Dio has a nice range on flutes, guitars, drums, but also adagio (string). EastWest too but they also have a rather nice collection of ethnic/world-instruments, like Ra, Silk, Gypsy etc.

The best thing for you to do is spend some time on watching videos on YouTube about this matter. There are many audiovisual demos available, with tutorials etc. Also there are many comparisons available. Also read reviews and listen to the demo tracks on the websites.

For in the end, it’s ultimately yourself who knows what his needs are. As the others here said: EastWest, ProjectSAM, 8Dio are excellent.

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Coriiander says

Oh, and ofcourse there is still the entire Vienna Symphonic Library which is really excellent. It sounds rather dry and requires extensive mixing to get it to sound good, but if you know what you’re doing you can get excellent results. EastWest has made this easier for you by supplying various microphone positions. With their gold bundles you typically get 1 microphone position (which sounds good), but with the platinum/diamond versions you get 4 microphone positions (close, stage, mid, surround) which really gives a breath-taking sound. What I really love about EastWest’s Hollywood String is the divisis – they are only available in the Diamond edition. And while I simply loooooove the Hollywood Brass I do also use VSL Epic Horns next to it.

Again: it’s best to do your own research for you know the specific things that you need. It is ok to combine things. Many people do.

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JBlanks says

Chenjesu – which of the piano/string libraries you looked at didn’t live up to your standards? You mentioned you looked at tons of them. Would be good to know which ones are sub par (that I don’t own) so I can steer clear of them in future. Cheers.

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gballx says

Sorry I forgot to mention that the good libraries I stated use key switching for different articulations and also it requires the user to write with the sounds in a realistic way – then one can get the realistic sound. It may take some time but I am sure you will achieve your sound that you desire. Good luck.

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