How To Create Authentic, Expressive String Ensemble Sounds

NI's Symphony Essentials distils the best of its larger Symphony series into a more affordable and compact collection - but it still sounds great, as Matt Vanacoro demonstrates.  

Native Instruments makes an impressive range of sample-based orchestral and scoring instruments that use its Kontakt technology to provide you with access to the kinds of orchestral sounds that would be hugely complex to work with in real life. In this short video, Matt Vanacoro explores one of its latest releases, Symphony Essentials. It's a lush, orchestral library with a wide range of potential uses. 

We begin by focusing in on the String Ensemble, a great-sounding, ready-mixed instrument that eschews complex controls and instead provides you with a rich and full string section playable right from your keyboard. Matt gives you hands-on examples of using the Dynamics, Brightness and Expression controls to quickly and easily create authentic, believable and pro-sounding string parts. It really is the easiest way to get the sound of a real orchestra in your tracks. Check out the other videos in the course for even more tips for this powerful collection of instruments. 

Watch the full course Symphony Essentials 101: Symphony Essentials Explored in the AskAudio Academy here. 

Symphony Essentials 101: Symphony Essentials Explored

Symphony Essentials is loaded with solo and ensemble libraries (Woodwind, Brass and String) to cover almost all your orchestral needs. Although the interface might look simple at first, there’s a lot going on under the hood. In fact, Symphonic Essentials is a real beast… so watch and listen as trainer and composer Matt Vanacoro explores the depth of this Kontakt library!

Matt starts by giving you a tour of the included five solo and ensemble instruments. After sharing some important Kontakt tips, he gives a detailed explanation of everything Symphony Essentials has to offer. You learn how to create realism with the articulation, legato and repetition features. You discover how to enhance the instruments with the built-in effects, how to use the arpeggiator, and you learn everything about key switches. The course also includes lots of resource management tips, and Matt even shows you how to create a one-man massive orchestra multi that won’t crash your computer...

So sit back, launch Kontakt and watch this Matt Vanacoro course to learn everything you need to create Hollywood-worthy soundtracks!

Watch the full course Symphony Essentials 101: Symphony Essentials Explored in the AskAudio Academy here.

Hollin Jones was classically trained as a piano player but found the lure of blues and jazz too much to resist. Graduating from bands to composition then production, he relishes the chance to play anything with keys. A sometime lecturer in videographics, music production and photography post production, Hollin has been a freelance w... Read More


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