In the world of game audio there’s often a need for the sounds of the earlier game consoles. Whether this is to help emulate a feeling of nostalgia of the 80s and 90s or to create all new styles of music with the older sounds, the tones of these classic consoles have had a persistent presence in the gaming world. This has been especially true with the rise of the indie game scene and the emphasis on the styles of the 8-bit and 16-bit eras.
Through the years there have been a number of software tools available to composers and audio designers for recreating these sounds. Programs like FamiTracker and Little Sound DJ have allowed composers to generate chiptune music, but they require considerable time to learn the various functions and limitations of the software. Meanwhile different FM synthesizers can be used to create sounds similar to the Sega Genesis, but often didn’t have the same limitations or imperfections of the sounds that you would hear on the original system hardware.
Now after many years of planning and development, Impact Soundworks, in collaboration with OverClocked Remix, has come forward with a collection of samples recorded from the systems themselves. The result is the sample library Super Audio Cart, which aims to provide a simple way of producing the authentic sounds of these consoles, while also presenting tools to let you do some new and complex things with the available instruments. I’ll be taking a look at the core functions of the library and examining how it stacks up against other methods of creating these sounds. (more…)
The sound engineers over at Rattly and Raw have just released a drum kit sample library for Kontakt 5 titled Martin France Drums. The collection includes a wide range of recordings of vintage and modern drums. The library contains over 32,000 samples to cover the recording of 36 different drum kit pieces. The demo video below shows off just some of the library’s capabilities and features.
The Martin France Drums library is available at the Rattly and Raw site for £99, or about $150 USD. The software is also compatible with the free Kontakt 5 Player, so you won’t need to shell out extra money for Kontakt 5 to use this collection. You can find out more information about Martin France Drums at the Rattly and Raw website.
There have been some great advancements in sample libraries when it comes to brass instruments. As someone who grew up on game soundtracks in the 90’s, I became accustomed to hearing some really terrible MIDI brass in orchestral arrangements in my favorite games. While the other instrument families were by no means brilliant in their attempts at accuracy in those days, I’ve always felt that brass instruments faired the worst in this regard. Over the past few years, with the technology available to produce better and more complex sample collections, it’s become easier and more common to obtain lifelike brass performances for projects without the use of a live ensemble.
One recent addition to the handful of brass instrument collections out there is Impact Soundworks’ latest orchestral sample library Bravura Scoring Brass. The library is focussed on providing lifelike performance for orchestral/classical music composition. Bravura contains collections of ensemble performances, as well as solo performance samples and a selection of aleatoric effects. Today on OSV, I will be taking a look at the full version of Bravura Scoring Brass and giving my overall impression of the software after spending a few weeks using it. (more…)
If you’re a hobby musician or someone looking to break into music composition, you might want to take a moment to fill out a survey over at Ask.Audio in order to be entered to win a ton of music recording and production gear from some of the biggest brand names in the industry.
To celebrate our new website design, new name, and the Ask.Audio Academy, we’ve partnered with the biggest & most popular music industry companies to give you the chance to win $33,000 of music gear.
All it takes to be signed into the giveaway is sign up for a free account on Ask.Audio, enter your email address and answer a 22-question survey about the types of setups and DAWs you might use, the brand of interface and midi controller you use, and so on. Submit your answers by August 31st in order to be entered to win one of 8 super bundles, such as the “Recording Musician Bundle” or the “DJ & Performer Bundle” that include a ton of music production hardware and software. Seven runner-ups will be given a 1-year subscription to the Ask. Audio Academy. You can gain an extra entry by sharing the contest post to your Facebook also.
So if you’ve got a few minutes to answer some questions (and also being subscribed to macProVideo.com and Ask.Audio newsletters; be sure to read those ToC), then this might be worth your time.
Software company Impact Soundworks has launched a weeklong sale on their sample libraries, with products on sale for as much as 40% off. This includes the guitar pack Shreddage, world instrument packs like Sitar Nation, and scoring tools Celestia and Vocalisa. There’s also special 15% sales on software bundles. These include a full Shreddage: Rock Band Bundle, a Complete World Bundle, and an Everything Bundle.
We’ve reviewed a few of these sample libraries in the past. In particular we’ve taken a look at Celestia: Heavenly Sound Design, Rhapsody: Orchestral Percussion, and Pearl: Concert Grand. The sale ends on August 3rd, so be sure to check out the offers before they end. I know I’ll be grabbing some of the music tools that have been on my wishlist. You can check out the full list of products for the Summer Sale on the Impact Soundworks website.
Of the various subjects that we like to cover on Original Sound Version, we occasionally turn our attention to the music tech side of game music. While our focus is primarily on the soundtracks and arrange/remix albums for game music, we also feel it’s important to review and examine some of the tools available to musicians, remixers, and composers. With that in mind, today we will be taking a look at Pearl Concert Grand, a new piano sample library from Impact Soundworks.
Pearl Concert Grand initially caught my attention because, being a composer myself, I’m always on the lookout for more realistic sounding piano libraries to use on my projects. Due to my classical music background, I have some very high standards for the quality of orchestral sample libraries. Piano sample libraries in particular have always had shortcomings in my experience. After years of performing on real pianos, I’ve never been able to find a decent substitute when using digital pianos or samples for performance or for composing. Technology for samples and digital sounds have certainly improved over the years, and Pearl Concert Grand is one of the more recent attempts to capture the true sound of the piano in a sample library. So with my high standards and a healthy dose of skepticism in mind, let’s take a look at this new piano sample library from Impact Soundworks. (more…)
Here on OSV we primarily focus on soundtracks and remix albums for videogames. However, every once in a while we like to take a look at some of the music software that’s available for composers to implement in their virtual instrument libraries. Such is the case with today’s review. This time around we will be looking at Impact Soundworks new percussion library Rhapsody: Orchestral Percussion.
The software, as the name implies, is focused on providing a realistic orchestral percussion library for composers and musicians. You won’t be dealing with any synth or electronic drums in this program. The primary focus here is on acoustic instruments, both from western and eastern parts of the world. Impact Soundworks has created and released various types of instrument libraries over the years. These have included guitar libraries, vocal ensembles, and a hybrid synth program, the latter of which we reviewed on OSV earlier this year. This new instrument library was designed by Dickie Chapin & Andrew Aversa. Like their previous products, the program is designed to work with any DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) through the software application Kontakt 5. For this review, I’ll be examining the program, analyzing how well the instruments work, and the overall quality of the product for the end user. With all of that said, let’s take a look at Rhapsody: Orchestral Percussion. (more…)
Detune, the company which brought the Korg M01D to the Nintendo 3DS last year, is bringing another synthesizer program to the platform. This latest music program is the Korg DSN-12.
What on earth is the Korg DSN-12? Well, it’s a synthesizer program that allows you to assemble music patterns to create your own songs. There are twelve analog monophonic synthesizers, sixty four sequence steps for building songs, a series of effects that you can use for the synths, and the ability for users to exchange and share data between systems.
One of the main features is a 3D oscilloscope, which gives you a visual representation of the sounds that you are creating. You can see this used in the demo songs below.
Because this is on the 3DS, users can make use of the touch screen to configure note patterns, sequences, and other attributes. With these tools you can create real time changes in a live performance or simply build a sequence for a static composition. The Korg DSN-12 will be coming to the US and Europe on the Nintendo eShop this fall for the 3DS and 2DS. Be sure to check out Detune’s main site for more information.
Here on OSV we focus primarily on the music of videogames. However, we do occasionally review music software, as these programs are a vital aspect of music writing and creation. While there are some game composers that are lucky enough to work with live musicians and orchestras, many still rely on sound libraries and samples to produce our favorite game music.
Today, we are looking at the Impact Soundworks library Celestia: Heavenly Sound Design. The library was created by Andrew Aversa, Jordan Aguirre, and others at Impact Soundworks. Many videogame music remix fans may be more familiar with Aversa and Aguirre by their artist names, Zircon and bLiNd respectively. This latest library is advertised as a collection of atmospheric and ambient hybrid synth sounds. The focus is more on the softer and ethereal synthesizer instruments, rather than heavy hitting and dramatic instruments. With all that said, let’s take a look at this latest product. (more…)
We can say we’re very curious about NOX Audio’s Admiral headset that we saw at Comic Con last year, but while they’re still working on finalizing that beast, we wanted to take a look at NOX Audio’s Scout Portable Headset. While they appear to be earphones more than a headset, the compact design offers more than a few surprises.
Find out if you’re worth picking up in our review after the jump. (more…)
We’ve reviewed many headsets over the years, but this is the first time we’ve taken a look at ASTRO’s lineup. The company needs no introduction as it’s long been one of the biggest names in the field of gaming headsets, being the official headset for Major League Gaming as well as being a constant presence at events including E3, Comic Con, and others.
Does the ASTRO A40 headset live up to the ASTRO name? Find out in our review after the jump. (more…)
We’re still wrapping things up from Comic Con a few weekends ago, and thought the touch-screen enabled Admiral headset from NOX Audio was one of the strangest things we saw at the show (yes, even more strange than some of the cosplayers).
We’ve talked about last year’s Specialist headset and Scout earphones, each with their own unique design elements, but NOX Audio is working full-throttle on the Admiral headset, a unique beast equipped with a touch screen and Wi-Fi capabilities.
Is it worth your attention, or just a gimmick? Find out after the jump. (more…)