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Posted on Fri, Nov 08 2013 04:30
by Avacade
Joined on Fri, Nov 08 2013, Posts 8
Could you guys tell me the differences between these three?
It seems like Symphonic cube has less collections, but their full equals the standard price of the super package.. confused. and the se package is listed differently than the other two (volumes, instead of collections). I'm just new to VSL and am very unfamiliar with them... Help much appreciated.

Best,
Posted on Fri, Nov 08 2013 07:57
by noldar12
Joined on Thu, Dec 04 2008, Posts 582

The best thing to do is to take a look at the included collections, and the sample content of each collection.

First, the full collections consist of two parts: standard and extended.  To get all the samples of the full libraries both parts need to be purchased.  The full collections have a large number of articulations that are not included in the SE libraries.  Also, the full collections have samples for every half-step, while the SE instruments have samples for every whole-step, and use transposed samples to fill in the missing half-steps.  In particular, the full libraries include many dynamics patches that can be of great use that the SE libraries do not have (generally, the dynamics patches are in the extended portion of the full libraries).

The SE collections use different terms compared to the full libraries.  For the SE libraries, instead of using "standard" and "extended" to describe that include additional articulations for the same instruments, in SE, the additional articulations are called "Plus".

As far as what to start with, it all depends on what you will be seeking to write, and/or the level you wish to start out at.  If you do start with SE, you will get a discount towards the "extended" portion of the full libraries.  It is not uncommon for people to start with SE, and as they become familiar with the VSL world to then start purchasing full libraries.  One common approach has been to buy SE 1, 2, and possibly 1 Plus and 2 Plus, and then add AP Strings for the first full library (or depending on main interest possibly the full chamber strings, or other strings library instead of AP Strings).

There are others, with more financial flexibility, who do start out with one of the large bundles of the full libraries.  In general purchasing both the standard and extended portion of the full libraries has major benefits, as the extended portion of the full libraries really help in creating more realistic sounding demos.

Whatever you do decide, once you get familiar with the basic free VI, adding VI Pro would be strongly suggested.  Also, many find either MIR Pro or 24 to be of great use (the use of MIR requires the purchase of VE Pro).  The Vienna Suite could be another possible option.

In any case, try to figure out as much in advance as possible, particularly what you wish to accomplish, as your writing and overall goals will help you determine what purchases make the most sense, and whether a large or more modest purchase is the best starting choice.

There is much to learn when starting in the VSL world, though IMO, the VSL sample world is outstanding and allows for great flexibility in one's writing styles.

Best wishes in figuring out what you need.  You will find many users on this site to be most helpful.

Posted on Fri, Nov 08 2013 13:09
by icecubeman
Joined on Fri, Nov 09 2012, Nitra, Posts 201
noldar12 wrote:
(the use of MIR requires the purchase of VE Pro

This is not true anymore, I am using MIR with standard Ensemble, but MIR can work as VST plugin, so I am using it that way, much more flexibility and options than in VE Pro.

Posted on Fri, Nov 08 2013 15:38
by noldar12
Joined on Thu, Dec 04 2008, Posts 582

You are right, I had forgotten that.

And that brought to mind another possibility: MIR X, which could be a very viable and less expensive option to MIR Pro depending on goals.

Posted on Fri, Nov 08 2013 18:46
by mschmitt
Joined on Mon, Jan 01 2007, Posts 147

Hi Avacade, figuring out the difference between all of the VSL products and bundles can be quite confusing. If you could tell us what type of music you would use the VSL libraries for, along with your current hardware and budget, several users here would be glad to chime in with suggestions on which products to look into.

You'll find the posters here very friendly and helpful. Good luck!

Michael

Full Cube and lots of other stuff
Posted on Sat, Nov 09 2013 10:32
by Bombadil
Joined on Tue, Sep 10 2013, Posts 29

There's also a huge difference in price! For the whole VSL collection, one could almost buy a new car. I would have to be either rich (I am not) or a professional composer (again, I am not) to be able to justify the whole collection.

Don't get me wrong, I now have SE I and II, VEPro and VIPro, and I am very impressed with the samples and the software. I figure I have enough to start out with. VIPro is, as Paul mentions in one of the SE Videos, an instrument that one needs to learn how to play.I am just starting to get my head around that! It is a paradigm shift for me, that's for sure!

Again, as mentioned, it comes down to what you want to do with the orchestral samples. I doubt I'll be scoring films anytime soon, but want some quality orchestral sounds to blend into original compositions that are rock/progressive rock-oriented and the orchestral samples are colours on a palette that I will use in addition to things like Omnisphere, some IKMultimedia VIs, piano, and my primary instrument, the guitar. I expect that I will end up with the PLUS versions of the SE collections too, and possibly extend that with some of the string libraries, but my wife would probably divorce me if I wanted the whole shebang! Big Smile

My two farthings,

Bombadil

Posted on Sat, Nov 09 2013 23:03
by Avacade
Joined on Fri, Nov 08 2013, Posts 8
mschmitt wrote:

Hi Avacade, figuring out the difference between all of the VSL products and bundles can be quite confusing. If you could tell us what type of music you would use the VSL libraries for, along with your current hardware and budget, several users here would be glad to chime in with suggestions on which products to look into.

You'll find the posters here very friendly and helpful. Good luck!

Michael



I will be writing classical music (not film). The type of sound I'm looking for leans towards more to Stravinsky(ish) sounds. Maybe his Firebird is a good example. The money I can spend on max is proly $8000. I have Yamaha's MOX8, which is a synthesizer, but I confirmed with Yamaha that it can work as a midi controller. Currently, I don't own any programs or software for virtual orchestras. Thank you for your reply!

Posted on Sun, Nov 10 2013 03:08
by Avacade
Joined on Fri, Nov 08 2013, Posts 8
noldar12 wrote:

The best thing to do is to take a look at the included collections, and the sample content of each collection.

First, the full collections consist of two parts: standard and extended.  To get all the samples of the full libraries both parts need to be purchased.  The full collections have a large number of articulations that are not included in the SE libraries.  Also, the full collections have samples for every half-step, while the SE instruments have samples for every whole-step, and use transposed samples to fill in the missing half-steps.  In particular, the full libraries include many dynamics patches that can be of great use that the SE libraries do not have (generally, the dynamics patches are in the extended portion of the full libraries).

The SE collections use different terms compared to the full libraries.  For the SE libraries, instead of using "standard" and "extended" to describe that include additional articulations for the same instruments, in SE, the additional articulations are called "Plus".

As far as what to start with, it all depends on what you will be seeking to write, and/or the level you wish to start out at.  If you do start with SE, you will get a discount towards the "extended" portion of the full libraries.  It is not uncommon for people to start with SE, and as they become familiar with the VSL world to then start purchasing full libraries.  One common approach has been to buy SE 1, 2, and possibly 1 Plus and 2 Plus, and then add AP Strings for the first full library (or depending on main interest possibly the full chamber strings, or other strings library instead of AP Strings).

There are others, with more financial flexibility, who do start out with one of the large bundles of the full libraries.  In general purchasing both the standard and extended portion of the full libraries has major benefits, as the extended portion of the full libraries really help in creating more realistic sounding demos.

Whatever you do decide, once you get familiar with the basic free VI, adding VI Pro would be strongly suggested.  Also, many find either MIR Pro or 24 to be of great use (the use of MIR requires the purchase of VE Pro).  The Vienna Suite could be another possible option.

In any case, try to figure out as much in advance as possible, particularly what you wish to accomplish, as your writing and overall goals will help you determine what purchases make the most sense, and whether a large or more modest purchase is the best starting choice.

There is much to learn when starting in the VSL world, though IMO, the VSL sample world is outstanding and allows for great flexibility in one's writing styles.

Best wishes in figuring out what you need.  You will find many users on this site to be most helpful.



Thank you for your reply. Some confusions arose when I was reading your post. If I bought the standard super package, could I upgrade individual library(like maybe getting the extended just for the percussion to acquire the full part of it)? Also, now I understand that SE and super package use different terms, but what about in terms of sound? like strings between SE and super package. I was a little confused about this because if "plus" in SE is an another way to describe "extended", I wonder if that means a better sounding than the "standard" package of the super package.

ALso, how much discount would I get if I do buy the SE? Just want to know if starting with SE and getting the extended portion with a discount would be financially beneficial than buying the standard super package right away.

Sorry for loads of questions...
Posted on Sun, Nov 10 2013 03:56
by mschmitt
Joined on Mon, Jan 01 2007, Posts 147

I can answer a few of your questions: I believe if you buy a standard "super package" you can buy individual extended libraries.

With regards to the SE and your budget, you will find the SE even with the "plus" libraries to be very watered down compared to the standard libraries. With regards to discounts, the purchase of SE "plus" libraries will give you a bit of a discount when you buy corresponding "extended" libraries, not the standard ones. So personally I wouldn't recommend going the SE route.

I'd listen to as many of the audio demos as you can, read the sample content of each library to see all of the articulations that are included, and be sure to check out the Dimension Brass and Strings as well as MIR.

If you want to get started right away learning how VSL products work, you could buy 1 or more of the single instruments to try out. They are priced very reasonably.

Full Cube and lots of other stuff
Posted on Sun, Nov 10 2013 08:52
by noldar12
Joined on Thu, Dec 04 2008, Posts 582

Given your goals and budget, I would agree with others, and suggest starting with full libraries, and not getting the SE package, as you will be able to afford a number of full libraries, and would likely soon want to replace the SE instruments with full ones.  Given the symphonic writing goals, getting the full libraries - both standard and extended portions - would be beneficial.  As for which libraries and/or packages to purchase that is another matter.  I don't know how VSL handles extended library purchases after buying a large standard bundle.  That would be worth having a VSL employee clarify.

Certainly, the Cube standard + extended, would provide you with all the key orchestral instruments (though relatively few muted strings), and could be a very viable option.  Given your budget, MIR Pro and the Vienna Suite would also be worth considering.

One other thing not discussed - and it probably is an area you are well covered in, but it is worth checking on - what sort of computer will you be using to run the libraries?

Posted on Sun, Nov 10 2013 09:53
by icecubeman
Joined on Fri, Nov 09 2012, Nitra, Posts 201

I disagree with ignoring SE editions and going directly for 5 grand library {Cube| and figure out that it is not suitable for someone who dont even know how this whole VSL thing works. I am strongly suggesting to go by SE route. You can do amazing sounding demos with them and lately buy those instruments collections you really need and want for your workflow. For example you may found that you dont need solo strings or chamber strings at all, but you will IMHO want Dim Brass or Strings. So SE gives you basic overview {and not unusable sound!}.

And one more thing, for beginner it can be harmful to buy very expensive package and try to run it all at mediocre computer. They relise very soon, that outstanding and expensive I7 with at least 32GB of Ram will be must and I am not even include MIR in this calculation!

Posted on Sun, Nov 10 2013 11:35
by Pyre
Joined on Thu, Jun 28 2012, Posts 143
I ignored the SE libraries and went straight for the Cube, I have never regretted this decision.

Be advised that virtual orchestras have a steep learning curve - that's no criticism of VSL, their products are as straightforward and user-friendly as they possibly could be, but there remains a lot to learn. So I would suggest buying the Cube and then orchestrating a few practice pieces whose quality you are not too concerned with.

I would suggest holding the remainder of the budget for a few single instruments as required (if you need, say, harpsichord, or XXL tam tam), and the VSL software package. The software products included (VI Pro, VE Pro, Suite, MIR and the Roompacks) are brilliant without exception, and quickly become indispensable. BUT, they do add another layer of learning curve, so I would suggest waiting before purchasing them. Learn to use the standard (free) version of VI and VE, get the music sounding as good as you can that way, and then pick up the software package.

That'd be my advice, please of course by all means ignore it.


Pyre
AMD Phenom 9850 Black Edition Quad-Core Processor (Water-Cooled)
8GB RAM
2x 1TB hard drives for libraries and audio, 1x 128GB SSD for OS
Presonus Firestudio 26-in 26-out firewire interface
Korg Triton Extreme-76 master keyboard, M-Audio MidAir-25 lap keyboard.

Windows 7 Ultimate, Cubase 4
VSL Symphonic Cube (standard library), Vienna Choir (standard library) and download instruments Recorders, Harpsichord, Basset Horn and Contrabass Clarinet.
Vienna Instruments Pro 2.4.13260 and Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.4.14074
Vienna Suite, Vienna MIR and all room packs
Sibelius 7 and Komplete 8
All 64-bit.
Posted on Mon, Nov 11 2013 02:22
by Avacade
Joined on Fri, Nov 08 2013, Posts 8
Well, currently I have custom pc with i7 X940 @ 2.13~2.1 GHz (8 cpu)
and.. 8g ram. If it's something that requires a better computer, please let me know about it as well.
Posted on Mon, Nov 11 2013 18:49
by icecubeman
Joined on Fri, Nov 09 2012, Nitra, Posts 201
Avacade wrote:
Well, currently I have custom pc with i7 X940 @ 2.13~2.1 GHz (8 cpu) and.. 8g ram. If it's something that requires a better computer, please let me know about it as well.

8GB of ram is not enough if you want to go with big VSL collections. For SE it is acceptable. If you want implement also MIR, you really need 24GB minimum and for big collections running through MIR second computer for another computing power. I will really start with SE in your case. You soon realise that you have to invest thousands not only in VSL but as much also in computers Wink VSL is very expensive hobby, but untouchable by other sound banks...

Posted on Tue, Nov 12 2013 07:00
by Avacade
Joined on Fri, Nov 08 2013, Posts 8
icecubeman wrote:
Avacade wrote:
Well, currently I have custom pc with i7 X940 @ 2.13~2.1 GHz (8 cpu) and.. 8g ram. If it's something that requires a better computer, please let me know about it as well.

8GB of ram is not enough if you want to go with big VSL collections. For SE it is acceptable. If you want implement also MIR, you really need 24GB minimum and for big collections running through MIR second computer for another computing power. I will really start with SE in your case. You soon realise that you have to invest thousands not only in VSL but as much also in computers Wink VSL is very expensive hobby, but untouchable by other sound banks...



Thanks for the reply. What is the second computer for? Is it due to the capacity problem? I wonder if having an external hard drive can solve having two computers.. I mean I can sort out to get a better computer. But what are some things I should consider for this besides the ram memory? Also, maybe offering a place to buy (online) would be appreciated :)
Posted on Tue, Nov 12 2013 08:15
by noldar12
Joined on Thu, Dec 04 2008, Posts 582

For the SE libraries, 8 gigs will be fine, but as already has been said 24 gigs is really the minimum for the full libraries plus MIR.  Note that if you use SSD's more samples can be loaded into RAM, as you can set lower buffers for any VSL library that streams from an SSD.

As for your i7 940x, again, for the SE libraries, you should be fine, but for large ensembles using lots of full libraries plus MIR Pro your computer would have definite limitations, even with increased RAM.  For smaller ensembles, though, you could possibly survive, but your current setup is underpowered for the type of writing you have described with the large number of full libraries you indicated you will be using, and the potential large number of tracks.  For streaming samples higher GHz is better, as the higher the frequency, the more samples you will be able to stream.  For effects and processing, in contrast, the number of cores will make a greater difference.  You will also need multiple hard drives to hold your libraries (SSDs preferred) in order to be able to stream more samples without dropouts.

OTOH, I am on a lesser system, using the older, and now obsolete, MIR SE with 24 gigs of RAM on an i7 930 (desktop, 2.8 GHz), and for what I do that works fine (total track count is limited to 32).  At such time as I am able to upgrade to MIR Pro, also getting a better computer would be very helpful.  For users who are more on the "power" side, Dietz has reported - for his own workflow and methods - getting roughly 100 instrument tracks using a 3930k i7, again YMMV.

Either that chip, or its replacement, the i7 4930k, would be strongly suggested for larger ensembles coupled with MIR Pro.  As for using multiple computers, there are different methods.  In VSL terms, some keep all VSL instruments and MIR on one computer and run their sequencer and whatever else on a lesser second computer.  Some others use multiple computers for VSL, using MIR Pro on one and MIR Pro 24 on another.  Again, it depends on how sample libraries you want to run from how many different companies and the simplicity/complexity of your overall setup.  If you will be going fairly strictly with VSL, you likely will be ok keeping all VSL libraries on one new computer (and keep using your existing computer for your sequencing software, and other tasks).

Posted on Tue, Nov 12 2013 16:20
by Avacade
Joined on Fri, Nov 08 2013, Posts 8
noldar12 wrote:

For the SE libraries, 8 gigs will be fine, but as already has been said 24 gigs is really the minimum for the full libraries plus MIR.  Note that if you use SSD's more samples can be loaded into RAM, as you can set lower buffers for any VSL library that streams from an SSD.

As for your i7 940x, again, for the SE libraries, you should be fine, but for large ensembles using lots of full libraries plus MIR Pro your computer would have definite limitations, even with increased RAM.  For smaller ensembles, though, you could possibly survive, but your current setup is underpowered for the type of writing you have described with the large number of full libraries you indicated you will be using, and the potential large number of tracks.  For streaming samples higher GHz is better, as the higher the frequency, the more samples you will be able to stream.  For effects and processing, in contrast, the number of cores will make a greater difference.  You will also need multiple hard drives to hold your libraries (SSDs preferred) in order to be able to stream more samples without dropouts.

OTOH, I am on a lesser system, using the older, and now obsolete, MIR SE with 24 gigs of RAM on an i7 930 (desktop, 2.8 GHz), and for what I do that works fine (total track count is limited to 32).  At such time as I am able to upgrade to MIR Pro, also getting a better computer would be very helpful.  For users who are more on the "power" side, Dietz has reported - for his own workflow and methods - getting roughly 100 instrument tracks using a 3930k i7, again YMMV.

Either that chip, or its replacement, the i7 4930k, would be strongly suggested for larger ensembles coupled with MIR Pro.  As for using multiple computers, there are different methods.  In VSL terms, some keep all VSL instruments and MIR on one computer and run their sequencer and whatever else on a lesser second computer.  Some others use multiple computers for VSL, using MIR Pro on one and MIR Pro 24 on another.  Again, it depends on how sample libraries you want to run from how many different companies and the simplicity/complexity of your overall setup.  If you will be going fairly strictly with VSL, you likely will be ok keeping all VSL libraries on one new computer (and keep using your existing computer for your sequencing software, and other tasks).



so with the min of 24 gb ram and a SSD, would i7 4930k do a good job if I were to run massive number of tracks? (70 for instance).
Also, would mac be better or pc?

Appreciating all of you guys' replies!
Posted on Wed, Nov 13 2013 18:46
by noldar12
Joined on Thu, Dec 04 2008, Posts 582

You should be fine with that chip as outlined above (very high end users will go dual xeon, but that gets very expensive and is more than most people need).  Multiple SSDs would be advised as it is best to stream large numbers of samples from multiple hard drives.

As far as which computer is best, VSL staff have commented that their products perform better on PC than on Mac.

Posted on Thu, Nov 14 2013 09:39
by Jiffster
Joined on Thu, Nov 14 2013, Posts 6
Don't lose hope and keep in mind that composing with orchestral libraries doesn't only require huge amounts of cpu and memory grunt - it's also about learning the workflow and figuring out how to squeeze the most out of what you have. It really is a unique process, and whilst having the latest and greatest technology at your fingertips must be a wonderful feeling, it is possible to get incredible results with VSL when using pretty basic kit.

Just look at Jay Bacal's set up -

https://community.vsl.co.at/forums/t/17615.aspx

"I use one pentium dual core PC with 4 GB of memory, a Soundblaster Audigy sound card, Sonar 7 Producer Edition sequencer, Altiverb 6 (sometimes Wizooverb) for reverb, Waves S1 for narrowing and panning, and course VSL VI for all the instruments. That's it. Nothing too fancy."

Granted, that was a while ago and he's probably upgraded by now, but his demos speak for themselves.

In my opinion, he gets better results than anyone I've heard using the VSL instruments, and he's not exactly using mega-tools to do it. Listen to some of his demos.

So, in short, although having the best computer and the fastest cpu and the most ram and the most SSD's is preferrable, you probably don't need to run out and splash thousands on a new machine just yet.

Cheers
-jiff
Posted on Thu, Nov 14 2013 13:58
by icecubeman
Joined on Fri, Nov 09 2012, Nitra, Posts 201

No offense here, but some demos can sound better and should be upgraded  {especially Dim Brass demos}...

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