Welcome Guest! To enable all features please Login or Register.

Notification

Icon
Error

Forum Jump  
Should I buy Chamber Strings?
Last post Tue, Jan 03 2012 by Sander M., 21 replies.
Options
Go to last post
2 Pages12>
Posted on Sat, Dec 20 2008 06:52
by musicman1919
Joined on Sat, Dec 20 2008, Posts 5
Hi Everyone,

I'm recording pop/rock songs, and I'd like to create some "chamber pop" songs by adding (you guessed it) a chamber orchestra. Naturally, I ended up finding the Vienna Chamber Strings collection (http://www.ilio.com/vienna/instruments/chamber/index.htm).

Is anyone using this with Logic Studio? Is it a good choice for what I'm trying to accomplish? Can I use it alone with the Performance Tool, or will I need to purchase the "extended version" to start getting the automated articulations, etc.?

Any advice would be much appreciated.

All the best,
Brian
Posted on Sat, Dec 20 2008 07:18
by Mark Schmieder
Joined on Mon, May 07 2007, Concord CA, Posts 207

I feel these are the best strings in the industry for accompanying pop/rock material.

After I bought both libraries and their extended licenses during the promotional special that accompanied the release of Chamber Strings II, I quickly found these to be the best strings for every project I am currently working on, regardless of genre.

For some reason, the articulations just seem to flow more naturally for me than the Solo Strings, Appassionata Strings, or Ensemble Strings. And this is even when sticking to the basic articulations of the standard edition and/or special editions.

What I really like about this library, is that the ensembles are big enough to give smaller arrangements depth, without overpowering anything. And they have character. I feel no need to layer this library with any other strings; it sounds as good and natural to me as layering solo voices.

My Solo Strings II is on its way. I haven't worked as much with the solo strings yet, but am now shifting over to some projects that have far more solom string voicings than emsemble voicings, so look forward to the con sordino option.

I recently sold my Garritan solo strings, not liking the timbre. I'm hoping Sample Modeling will release improved versions at some point, as those might work better for jazz, klezmer, etc.

Before getting Chamber Strings, I had been using Miroslav Philharmonik, finding that it was easier to control articulations and get good phrasing than with the scaled-down versions of the string libraries in Special Edition. I sold Miroslav Philharmonik after delving into VSL's full libraries.

VSL's Chamber Strings is the first string library where I have been successful with minimal effort in octave-doubling parts between different string voicings (e.g. cello-and-violin) and have it blend perfectly. These are very playable libraries, and seem to account for the heft of the bow.

Due to my weak computer, I can go no further than Matrices at this point. Once I upgrade, I can start taking advantage of Presets and make my own. But I only have 764 MB RAM and 800 MHz to play with. Nevertheless, I have made do with mostly the Standard vs. Extended so far.

Posted on Sat, Dec 20 2008 07:51
by musicman1919
Joined on Sat, Dec 20 2008, Posts 5
Thank you very much for your response, mhschmieder. I really appreciate your advice. I think I might just purchase Chamber Strings II and not I. The samples sound awesome. How does the Performance Tool work? Am I correct in believing that I can play "live" with the Performance Tool and it will sound natural? -- Brian
Posted on Sat, Dec 20 2008 15:25
by Beat Kaufmann
Joined on Fri, Jan 03 2003, Switzerland/Brugg, Posts 1740
Tosaguy wrote:
Thank you very much for your response, mhschmieder. I really appreciate your advice. I think I might just purchase Chamber Strings II and not I. The samples sound awesome. How does the Performance Tool work? Am I correct in believing that I can play "live" with the Performance Tool and it will sound natural? -- Brian

Hello Brian

Let me jump in. I understand that you need help because we are not able to test the four strings before. 

As mhschmieder already mentioned the chamberstrings are very agile, contain all instrumentsand sound close to the solostrings (nice vibrato) even if we have an ensemble. A disadvantage could be that you don't get a "fat" string sound which is sometimes necessary for playing melodies in the pop and rock world.

Here you can listen to some U-music - done with VSL strings.

Perhaps you will find the stile in my demos like you want to produce yourself.

Let me know the piece and I can tell you something about the used library.

How does the Performance Tool work?

Load the Vienna Instrument (VST-Sample-Player). Load then a performance sample - such as "legato" into the VI and play what you want. If the first tone/note overlaps while playing into the following tone/note then the VI selects automatically the "crossing noise/sound" between these two tones/notes. So you will be able to recognize keys, valves, fingers, portamentos or what ever. 

You can switch between several articulation by assigning keyswitches (midi controllers or notes on the keyboard and...).

This tutorial shows the necessary steps  for creating a short music sequence - done with the VI.

I might just purchase Chamber Strings II

Keep in mind that all the instruments of the library "Chamber Strings II" are played with Sordino (mutetd)!

They sound really nice but it is not the everyday case in the "orchestra world". So I'm not sure whether it

is the best library for starting with.

All the best

Beat 

www.musik-produktion-createc.ch (Konzertaufnahmen, Musik mit Samples)
at www.beat-kaufmann.com : MIXING an ORCHESTRA - TUTORIAL
Posted on Sat, Dec 20 2008 16:35
by musicman1919
Joined on Sat, Dec 20 2008, Posts 5
Thank you very much, Beat! I really enjoyed your demos -- you are very talented! For my songs, I think I would like a string sound similar to what you used in "Carefree Life" and "Flight Close to the Clouds". Were those made with Chamber Strings I?

I can understand your point about Chamber Strings II. I saw another message on this forum -- someone thought Chamber Strings II sounds livelier and "less muted" than Chamber Strings I when the opposite is supposed to be true. That's why I thought I might just purchase II.

I will study the tutorial you sent and try to get a better understanding of how this would work for me.

Thank you again!!!

Brian
Posted on Sat, Dec 20 2008 17:48
by Beat Kaufmann
Joined on Fri, Jan 03 2003, Switzerland/Brugg, Posts 1740

Hello Brian

Thanks for the compliments Embarrassed

Chamber Strings I & II:  Please visit the demo page of VSL and compare the sound of the two "Chambers" at

http://vsl.co.at/en/67/4587/4590.vsl

I recommend

- Chamber Strings I: Holbergs Suite, Sarabande (1st part Solo Strings, 2nd part Chamber Strings I)

- Chamber Strings II: BWV 622 ( listen to the 3rd/3, there you have the same loudness as in the Sarabande)

You can compare in a nice way the timbre of the two libraries.

Why do I recommend my demos? If you want to compare sounds you need nearly equal mixes... Smile

Unfortunately you like the sounds which are produced with combined libraries. I often take the orchestra- or also the appassionata library and add an unisono track - but played by a solo violin. So I always get a rich string sound but with a touch more of the liveness of the solo strings > or in other words:

The Chamber Feeling with more ensemble-effect Smile

1. Carefree Life: Orchestra Violins combined with Solo Violin.

2. Flight close...:

  • Melody: Appassionata Violins +  Chamber I Violins
  • Dagadada Dagadada Dagadada ....: Chamber I Violins
  • Ta Ta Ta Ta Ta...: Orchestra + Chamber I Violins and Violas
  • Basses:Orchestra Basses + Chamber I Basses

That helps not - I know.

A (bit a more expensive) solution could be to buy the "Special Edition" beside your favorite Strings. There you have all the strings on hand - with a reduced offer of articulation samples of coarse. Together with the Full Chamber Strings or the Full Solo Strings you will be able to add more "Ensemble" if you need it. Further you will get Woodwinds, Brass instruments Percussion instruments a Piano, a Harpsi...

A Link for comparing all the strings (no sordinos)

again: http://www.orchester.beat-kaufmann.com/referenzen/index.php

E- Musik > BK BWV 622... Solo Viola / Solo Strings / Chamber Strings / Orchestra Strings / Appassionata Strings

By the way: Handels Watermusic and "the Arrival of the Queen of.." is played with the Chambers.

Best

Beat

www.musik-produktion-createc.ch (Konzertaufnahmen, Musik mit Samples)
at www.beat-kaufmann.com : MIXING an ORCHESTRA - TUTORIAL
Posted on Sat, Dec 20 2008 18:51
by musicman1919
Joined on Sat, Dec 20 2008, Posts 5
Thank you so much for your detailed responses, Beat. I am always so grateful for experts like you who are willing to share their time and knowledge. You have given me much to consider. I will review the demos again. I have been using the Miroslav Philharmonik, but I want something that is recorded more "dry". I also want a little more control over the articulations. From what I understand, more of this is automated in VSL. I can't afford to purchase any more than just the standard Chamber Strings (I or II without the extensions). Would the Chamber Strings alone be an improvement for me? The strings are never the focus in my vocal-based pop/rock songs. I just want some strings that are easier to mix and don't make people think they are synthesized. It seems like the Chamber Strings would still be a step in the right direction for me, but I'm not really sure. -- Brian
Posted on Sun, Dec 21 2008 01:20
by Beat Kaufmann
Joined on Fri, Jan 03 2003, Switzerland/Brugg, Posts 1740

Tosaguy wrote:
Thank you so much... Would the Chamber Strings alone be an improvement for me? ... I just want some strings that are easier to mix and don't make people think they are synthesized. It seems like the Chamber Strings would still be a step in the right direction for me, but I'm not really sure. -- Brian
 

Hello Brian

Use the Chamber Strings. You can't recognize the large ensembles as good as the Chamber Strings in a Rock Mix. Smile And who would put a sordino (a "damper") on a violin in a rock concert? > Chamber Strings 1.   

Beat

www.musik-produktion-createc.ch (Konzertaufnahmen, Musik mit Samples)
at www.beat-kaufmann.com : MIXING an ORCHESTRA - TUTORIAL
Posted on Sun, Dec 21 2008 01:52
by musicman1919
Joined on Sat, Dec 20 2008, Posts 5
Thank you very much, Beat. I think I will take your advice and order Chamber Strings 1 on Monday. I am extremely grateful for your helpful advice, and I wish you continued success with your outstanding music!

All the best,
Brian
Posted on Sun, Dec 21 2008 02:35
by Beat Kaufmann
Joined on Fri, Jan 03 2003, Switzerland/Brugg, Posts 1740

Dear Brian

I'm sure you will be happy with it. What a nice christmas - Gift.

Thanks once more for your kind words about my music and 

 I'm looking forward to your first track with the Chambers in 2009 - therefore: Happy 2009 Yes Drinks Music  

Beat

www.musik-produktion-createc.ch (Konzertaufnahmen, Musik mit Samples)
at www.beat-kaufmann.com : MIXING an ORCHESTRA - TUTORIAL
Posted on Wed, Sep 14 2011 07:24
by hroiwer
Joined on Wed, Aug 03 2011, Posts 7
Chamber of Commerce, there are many strings, you can choose according to your personal preferences!
Posted on Wed, Sep 14 2011 13:02
by cgernaey
Joined on Mon, Apr 04 2005, Detroit-Michigan, Posts 1062

hroiwer wrote:
Chamber of Commerce, there are many strings, you can choose according to your personal preferences!
 

I don't understand what you mean here.  Can you explain in more detail please?

Windows 10 Pro 64-bit, 128GB RAM, AMD 3970X 32-core
Gigabyte TRX40 Aorus Xtreme, Radeon RX 5500 XT
Studio One 5.1.1, Cubase 10.5, Nuendo 10
RME Multiface 2, All NVMe SSD Drives (OS & Samples)
Posted on Wed, Sep 14 2011 20:24
by Shawn Gibson
Joined on Tue, Sep 23 2008, Toronto, Posts 192

Have you ever had a sound on your keyboard or piano or guitar that you just go to to have fun cuz it's so beautiful? Add VSL Chamber strings to that list, regardless of what you're doing.

Eternal Nube with a passion for all-things VSL.
Posted on Thu, Sep 15 2011 00:06
by Suntower
Joined on Wed, Mar 16 2011, Seattle, Dublin, Posts 276

At the risk of breaking the love fest, if you're doing pop/rock I think you also should check out NI's 'Session Strings Pro'. For backgrounds to pop/r&b they are -outstanding-.

I just got Chambers String I & II and they are -breathtaking- for making 'classical' music....and SSP is pretty useless for that application. But for anything from disco to motown SSP is simply the shiznit.

So get Chamber Strings if you also want to do more than backgrounds. But if you just want instant rock power ballad joy... SSP should also be on yer radar.

YMMV

---JC

DAW: Cubase 8.5/64
Controllers: CME UF8, Roland VDrums, Exp. Pedal, Sus Pedal.
Main: Sandybridge Win10/64 16gb Boot Dr: SSD, Samples: SAT-600
Slave: Intel Q8400, 16gb RAM Win10/64
VEP5, VIPro, Chamber Strings, Tenor Sax, Epic Orch, EWQLO
Posted on Thu, Sep 15 2011 20:29
by Shawn Gibson
Joined on Tue, Sep 23 2008, Toronto, Posts 192

If you try to record Shania Twain's "Don't be Stupid" without breathing people, buy VSL. POP can be hard too. I don't think less is ever more. Only if your time is unimportant and it will be rerecorded...in which case, steal a soundfont:) 

The music that you like takes money. Think of the songs you love (pop songs for example)...I'm sure they cost a lot of money.

Maybe if you're as old as me they relied on talent and cost less...who knows...but today Shania could have written Don't Be Stupid with VSL, For sure...as an example.

Eternal Nube with a passion for all-things VSL.
Posted on Fri, Sep 16 2011 05:55
by noldar12
Joined on Thu, Dec 04 2008, Posts 582

There is a real tradeoff when buying libraries.  One can buy something that is "good enough" for what one is seeking to do at the moment (have done this to often, to my eventual regret).  The problem with buying good-enough-for-now is that as one grows it will cease to be good enough.  I have learned the hard way that it is better to buy libraries that give room for ample growth, libraries that are capable of doing more than just what I need this moment.

Now, if one has a strong reason to believe that the "lesser library" will fit in many projects over an extended period of time, than there is good justification for purchasing that library.

Personally, if I had the option of starting all over again (given that I now have a better idea of what I am seeking to do), there would be several libraries that I would bypass now (in favor of more VSL).

Posted on Fri, Sep 16 2011 06:23
by Mark Schmieder
Joined on Mon, May 07 2007, Concord CA, Posts 207

That is certainly true, but Session Strings Pro is a must-have for anyone occasionally doing Disco or R&B style strings. They are deliberately cheesy, but in a good way. VSL is NOT cheesy, so is not the ideal match. I recently replaced some of my VSL tracks with Sessions Strings Pro and it was a HUGE improvement for those particular pieces. I don't think any level of production would have taken VSL to that same place, as VSL is played professionally in a classical way, with classical articulations, intonation, and expression. Session Strings can go dark, warm, cold, or harsh. It's very versatile and easy to work with. I would NEVER use it for anything classical or Broadway. But oh does it ever evoke the 60's/70's!

As fas as VSL is concerned, as of next week I will own everything VSL makes except the Windows-only stuff. Chamber Strings remains my favourite, as I prefer more intimate orchestrations where there is more expression in each part. I rarely ever even double winds and brass, unless doing Wagnerian/Straussian stuff. I generally stick to Chamber Orchestra type instrumentation.

If I were working with a real orchestra, it might be different. Probably I am just more successful with smaller orchestrations because they are more manageable in terms of not having to do so much layering and sample-switching to keep things from getting muddy, as happens so quickly with larger groupings since that's not how real orchestras play (we would need True Divisi, which we don't have with VSL).

I look forward to the arrival of Orchestral Strings I and Appassionata Strings II so that I can finally do complete comparisons of every voicing of the string family. I do find that certain articulations draw me to one vs. the other, regardless of my intended ensemble size. In those cases, I do some doubling if I needed a larger ensemble.

I'm actually surprised just how different Chamber, Orchestral and Appassionata sound from each other, given that the conditions and in some cases the players were probably about the same. And I'm really glad that's the case, because it allows me to "fake" Divisi to a certain degree.

Posted on Tue, Sep 20 2011 05:12
by Suntower
Joined on Wed, Mar 16 2011, Seattle, Dublin, Posts 276

As a former motown sideman, I can speak to this to some degree. I was honoured to know a lot of the string/horn players on the classic records and FYI -most- of these people were Detroit Symphony members by day. They were the first to say that the arrangements and the surroundings made them -play- different.

What string guy doesn't play differently in a quartet or 4-2-1 (motown) group than in a group of 16 firsts and seconds? What singer? Does a brass quartet play the same as the same guys doing Mahler?

I just can't see the snobbery on Session Strings... it's not a cheap-o by any stretch. It's a special purpose tool done -very- meticulously. As is Chamber Strings. They do different things.

And by the same token, I can't see getting to Appassionata by simply 'doubling' Chamber Strings.

And even more broadly? The sad truth I've learned over the past 2-3 months of research is that you can't go cheap on any of this stuff... you almost gotta get everything. (Where's the crying icon?)

DAW: Cubase 8.5/64
Controllers: CME UF8, Roland VDrums, Exp. Pedal, Sus Pedal.
Main: Sandybridge Win10/64 16gb Boot Dr: SSD, Samples: SAT-600
Slave: Intel Q8400, 16gb RAM Win10/64
VEP5, VIPro, Chamber Strings, Tenor Sax, Epic Orch, EWQLO
Posted on Mon, Oct 17 2011 01:18
by mpower88
Joined on Thu, Aug 12 2004, Posts 729

"Personally, if I had the option of starting all over again (given that I now have a better idea of what I am seeking to do), there would be several libraries that I would bypass now (in favor of more VSL)."

Oh yep, that's so true.

The more time goes by, the more I learn to appreciate VSL. 

XI Machines 2687W, 64Gb Ram, Win 10
Angelbird SSD's..VEPro 7/MIR, Cubase 11 Pro
Almost the Full Vienna Collection.
SSL 2 Interface. Adam Audio S3A monitors
One half of Seraphonica.
Posted on Tue, Oct 18 2011 08:04
by Erik
Joined on Sat, Nov 20 2004, The Netherlands, Posts 144

If you want to compare different libraries visit slb-o.com. Follow the link to the forum > recipes. There are several pieces for strings in which VSL Chamber Strings as well as Session Pro are involved. Especially the Holberg Prelude is interesting in this context.

Since I am the one who made these mock-ups presented there I would like to make clear that these productions are the result of a personal and always subjective way of working and interpreting. Maybe I would come with quite different results if I make them again next week. It is what it is now.

Nevertheless, I would always be interested as visitor of this forum in such comparisons.

best,

Erik

2 Pages12>
You cannot post new threads in this forum.
You cannot reply to threads in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.