Soundware I wish I hadn't bought
During the journey of building my sound collection, I had always strived to get the best titles I could afford at the time, but more importantly the ones that inspired me the most. Unfortunately, I had also made quite a few childish mistakes in the process. Those were frequently caused by financial reasons and for being impatient. Now I’m quite frustrated for making them, but mistakes are after all the integral part of any learning process. Here are some of my most notorious mishaps made while buying music software.
IK Multimedia SampleTank 2 L
I’ve bought this at the time when I’ve begun to look for something extra outside AIR Creative Collection that shipped with Pro Tools 8. Back then, I couldn’t afford myself software from Native Instruments so the products from IK Multimedia seemed like a decent alternative. I’ve started by buying SampleTank 2 L which had smaller sound library than the full version, but was also quite cheaper. By doing so, I had actually made two mistakes at once. I didn’t like many of the sounds included in the L version and was constantly craving for more diversity. Also the GUI of the program was too small to use and read comfortably. At a later stage, I’ve recieved a 50% crossgrade discount so I had finally upgraded to the full palette of IK Multimedia sound libraries. But after I had purchased my first version of Native Instruments Komplete (Komplete 9), I had completely forgot about my IK Multimedia collection.
IK Multimedia Miroslav Philharmonik CE
This was my very first orchestral library. Although I’ve thought it sounds quite good (at the time), I’ve used it very rarely due to its rather small and cramped GUI, sound palette organization and the lack of keyswitches for choosing the wanted articulations. Also, its sound library was quite limited comparing to the full version of Miroslav Philharmonik, but this was too expensive for me back then. Later, I’ve even crossgraded to the full version, but the issues that bothered me before had remained.
Garritan Personal Orchestra 4
I’ve bought this after being quite frustrated with the workflow when using Miroslav Philharmonik. While browsing through Garritan website, I’ve had a feeling their software is much more user friendly and easy to use. Garritan Personal Orchestra was also dubbed as the perfect companion for learning the craft of MIDI orchestration, so I’ve decided to give it a go and use it to brush my skills. Unfortunately, the quality of the included sounds was not that great and I simply wasn’t inspired by those, though I must admit the concept of the project is true to the words.
Native Instruments New York Grand and Upright Piano
The piano is my primary instrument, so I was quite disappointed with the piano sounds I had at my disposal before. Those included AIR Mini Grand, pianos from AIR Xpand2 as well as those found in SampleTank 2 and SonikSynth 2 libraries. I’ve even purchased Piano Expansion from IK Multimedia, but still wasn’t happy. I’ve finally started to think about purchasing Native Instruments Komplete to solve my needs for quality sounds once and for all, but I’ve felt quite guilty at the same time due to all my previous soundware purchases. So I’ve decided to buy only a couple of pianos from Native Instruments to use along with the other sounds I’ve already had. This is certainly one of the worst decisions you can make when buying soundware. With Native Instruments, purchasing individual products from their vast library is the most expensive way to go, so now I’m really sorry I hadn’t took the plunge with their Komplete package much earlier. But at the same time, buying Komplete has been a death toll for all the sounds I’ve purchased before that, hence that guilty feeling at first - soon passed. ;)
Aria Sounds London Symphonic Strings
I’ve bought this when it was 75% off at VSTBuzz. Back then, I was in market for more serious Kontakt strings library and I’ve had my eyes on Cinematic Strings 2. But due to the financial reasons (blah blah), I’ve gone with this instead, thinking I’m doing the “right thing”. This is by far, the most disappointing library for Kontakt I’ve had thus far. It weighs more than 40 GB, however its sounds are not so much impressive and inspiring. Also, the huge library is plagued by technical issues, like poor scripting and the lack of keyswitches, which was never corrected by the team at Aria Sounds. Still, they’ve advertised this as their flagship library for quite some time which was emphasised by quite hefty price (abt. 250 GBP) :() The latest update: it seems that LSS is no longer available for purchase on Aria Sounds website… It seems they’ve given up on its development for good. Nice touch.