"Best Free VSTs of 2013"

General discussions on songwriting, mixing, music business and other music related topics.

Session Strings Pro vs. "Non-Pro"?

Postby foolomon » Tue Dec 17, 2013 2:48 pm

Does anyone have any practical experience with Session Strings who can tell me what the difference is between the Pro and non-Pro versions?
_________________

"Just call me Larry."

Dell Lattitude E6430 laptop (Windows 7 64-bit + 16GB RAM)
AMD-Phenom II based system (Windows 7 64-bit + 8GB DDR3 RAM)
Tascam US-144 / M-Audio 2496 interfaces

Other hardware: Too much to mention here
Software: Cubase 6.5; Komplete 9; Melodyne Editor; various VSTs from Blue Cat Audio, FabFilter, Native Instruments, Sound Toys, and Variety of Sound

Stop by and visit!
User avatar
foolomon
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1288
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 7:42 pm
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 27 times

Re: Session Strings Pro vs. "Non-Pro"?

Postby papi61 » Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:04 am

foolomon wrote:Does anyone have any practical experience with Session Strings who can tell me what the difference is between the Pro and non-Pro versions?


Simply put, SSP is about 10 times larger than the earlier release. And you can hear that the sound is MUCH more accurate and defined. Mind you that this is a small chamber strings group and not a symphonic string section, so it has to be used accordingly.

Also a crucial difference is that the original product only gives you one section of "generic" strings, which means no divisi, no violins, violas, cellos, basses, just a unified "string patch." Might work for background "pop strings", but it's not very credible when the strings are exposed or they play more complex lines. Furthermore, SSP comes with a lot more articulations, round robin layers, expression layers etc. Finally, it comes with a lot more automated patterns (including the option to program your own), although I've never been a fan of those (IMHO they still sound mechanical), so to me the latter is a moot point. But then again, some people believe it's actually SSP's best feature. As usual, your mileage varies.

SSP is still NOT competitive with the best strings libraries on the market, but, to be fair, it's not as expensive and it's not meant to be used to recreate classical music on a computer.

P.S. How is your question on-topic? For someone who blasted me (and most likely reported me) for allegedly going off-topic, your post comes off as mighty hypocritical (neither SS or SSP are free VST's.) But hey, I answered your question anyway, and wouldn't even have made a fuss out of it, if you didn't attack me before. Peace.
Desktop: i7 3770k, 32 GB RAM, nVidia GTX770 + GT640-DCSL fanless, 3 monitors (30" 2560x1600 + 2x 27" 1920x1080), 256 GB SSD (OS), 2 TB SATA III (audio), 3 TB SATA III (sample libraries), 3x 3 TB USB 3.0 (backup/archives), RME UFX, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Slaves: 2x i7 2700k, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 3 TB SATA III, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Laptop: 17" HP EliteBook 8770w (i7 3820QM 2.7 Ghz/3.7 Ghz max OC, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 1 TB SATA III), RME Babyface, Win 7 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3.
User avatar
papi61
Member
 
Posts: 570
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:56 pm
Has thanked: 16 times
Been thanked: 48 times

Re: Session Strings Pro vs. "Non-Pro"?

Postby foolomon » Wed Dec 18, 2013 8:13 pm

papi61 wrote:P.S. How is your question on-topic? For someone who blasted me (and most likely reported me) for allegedly going off-topic, your post comes off as mighty hypocritical (neither SS or SSP are free VST's.) But hey, I answered your question anyway, and wouldn't even have made a fuss out of it, if you didn't attack me before. Peace.


You are correct - it isn't on-topic. I asked the question because NI has a $25 e-voucher on its web page with the free VST so I was thinking of expanding my library. Since the OP was really about expanding my library (though not worded as such) I made the internal connection without it being obvious to the readers. My apologies.

Also, I didn't report you. I don't think I've reported anyone on this site ever.
_________________

"Just call me Larry."

Dell Lattitude E6430 laptop (Windows 7 64-bit + 16GB RAM)
AMD-Phenom II based system (Windows 7 64-bit + 8GB DDR3 RAM)
Tascam US-144 / M-Audio 2496 interfaces

Other hardware: Too much to mention here
Software: Cubase 6.5; Komplete 9; Melodyne Editor; various VSTs from Blue Cat Audio, FabFilter, Native Instruments, Sound Toys, and Variety of Sound

Stop by and visit!
User avatar
foolomon
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1288
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 7:42 pm
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 27 times

Re: Session Strings Pro vs. "Non-Pro"?

Postby papi61 » Wed Dec 18, 2013 9:29 pm

foolomon wrote:
papi61 wrote:P.S. How is your question on-topic? For someone who blasted me (and most likely reported me) for allegedly going off-topic, your post comes off as mighty hypocritical (neither SS or SSP are free VST's.) But hey, I answered your question anyway, and wouldn't even have made a fuss out of it, if you didn't attack me before. Peace.


You are correct - it isn't on-topic. I asked the question because NI has a $25 e-voucher on its web page with the free VST so I was thinking of expanding my library. Since the OP was really about expanding my library (though not worded as such) I made the internal connection without it being obvious to the readers. My apologies.

Also, I didn't report you. I don't think I've reported anyone on this site ever.


Like I said, it's fine with me. I think that it's quite silly to talk about "off topic" in a section of this forum that is basically dedicated to chatting about music in general. So, I will not bother you again with "off topic" if you promise to do the same with me.
Desktop: i7 3770k, 32 GB RAM, nVidia GTX770 + GT640-DCSL fanless, 3 monitors (30" 2560x1600 + 2x 27" 1920x1080), 256 GB SSD (OS), 2 TB SATA III (audio), 3 TB SATA III (sample libraries), 3x 3 TB USB 3.0 (backup/archives), RME UFX, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Slaves: 2x i7 2700k, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 3 TB SATA III, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Laptop: 17" HP EliteBook 8770w (i7 3820QM 2.7 Ghz/3.7 Ghz max OC, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 1 TB SATA III), RME Babyface, Win 7 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3.
User avatar
papi61
Member
 
Posts: 570
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:56 pm
Has thanked: 16 times
Been thanked: 48 times

Re: Session Strings Pro vs. "Non-Pro"?

Postby foolomon » Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:40 am

papi61 wrote:Like I said, it's fine with me. I think that it's quite silly to talk about "off topic" in a section of this forum that is basically dedicated to chatting about music in general. So, I will not bother you again with "off topic" if you promise to do the same with me.


Fair enough though, for the record, I was complaining about your desire to simply be snarky instead of actually adding to the content of the thread. Whether it was off-topic or not, to me, was inconsequential.
_________________

"Just call me Larry."

Dell Lattitude E6430 laptop (Windows 7 64-bit + 16GB RAM)
AMD-Phenom II based system (Windows 7 64-bit + 8GB DDR3 RAM)
Tascam US-144 / M-Audio 2496 interfaces

Other hardware: Too much to mention here
Software: Cubase 6.5; Komplete 9; Melodyne Editor; various VSTs from Blue Cat Audio, FabFilter, Native Instruments, Sound Toys, and Variety of Sound

Stop by and visit!
User avatar
foolomon
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1288
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 7:42 pm
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 27 times

Re: Session Strings Pro vs. "Non-Pro"?

Postby papi61 » Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:56 am

foolomon wrote:
papi61 wrote:Like I said, it's fine with me. I think that it's quite silly to talk about "off topic" in a section of this forum that is basically dedicated to chatting about music in general. So, I will not bother you again with "off topic" if you promise to do the same with me.


Fair enough though, for the record, I was complaining about your desire to simply be snarky instead of actually adding to the content of the thread. Whether it was off-topic or not, to me, was inconsequential.


My post wasn't meant to be snarky. I just warned that checking out lots of VST's (especially the free ones, most of which are worthless) can lead to an enormous waste of time, which usually comes at the expense of making music. And I clearly said that I was once guilty of that. Cautionary tale rather than snark.
Desktop: i7 3770k, 32 GB RAM, nVidia GTX770 + GT640-DCSL fanless, 3 monitors (30" 2560x1600 + 2x 27" 1920x1080), 256 GB SSD (OS), 2 TB SATA III (audio), 3 TB SATA III (sample libraries), 3x 3 TB USB 3.0 (backup/archives), RME UFX, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Slaves: 2x i7 2700k, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 3 TB SATA III, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Laptop: 17" HP EliteBook 8770w (i7 3820QM 2.7 Ghz/3.7 Ghz max OC, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 1 TB SATA III), RME Babyface, Win 7 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3.
User avatar
papi61
Member
 
Posts: 570
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:56 pm
Has thanked: 16 times
Been thanked: 48 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby OldFecker » Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:05 pm

foolomon wrote:Anyone use any of these?

Part 1 of 3


Yes! the TDR feedback compressor is great on the 2bus!

papi61 wrote:Maybe you should spend more time actually making music and less time trying out new VST's?
Just an idea...


Maybe you should go play on a busy road.
Just an idea.
Cubase 6.55 (32 bit) on Windows 7 (64 bit) // Intel core i7 920 (4 CPUs @ 3.6 GHz) // UAD2 QUAD
OldFecker
Junior Member
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Aug 06, 2013 9:03 pm
Has thanked: 0 time
Been thanked: 6 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby volterock » Sat Jan 04, 2014 9:13 am

I used to get download and use as many free vsts as I could but it made my daw unstable and I couldn't open any old projects :shock:
volterock
New Member
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Sat Jan 04, 2014 8:52 am
Has thanked: 0 time
Been thanked: 3 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby Sherz » Sun Jan 05, 2014 8:34 am

I've been on a quest for a few years now to actually reduce the VST/VSTi 'clutter' on my DAW. I've been steadily purging various 3rd party plugins, having a bit of a purge as it were, and now with Cubase 7.5, Jamstix 3.5 (coupled with Steve Slate Drums 4), and NI "Alicia Key's" Piano - I actually have everything I need and I am determined to rigorously resist the urge to indulge in stuff I don't need even if it's free! And the reality is that I've barely scratched the surface with some plugins and VSTi's. I could easily spend the rest of my days just getting more familiar and more expert with the bundled stuff. Now, that's not to say some of those listed plugins and others aren't any good... it's just I don't want or need them and I don't believe that unnecessarily clogging my system up with an assortment of miscellaneous plugins will make any real-world tangible difference to any thing I produce. Running a clean lean system has more appeal to me. But that's just me... :)
Cubase 7.5.3 (64bit) | Windows 7 | M-Audio Fastrack C600| 3.4Ghz Intel i5 | 8Gb
--- M Y M U S I C ---
Sherz
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1311
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 10:59 pm
Has thanked: 18 times
Been thanked: 15 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby Strophoid » Sun Jan 05, 2014 10:00 pm

I'm completely with you Ian, I prefer having just a few choices for plugins over a whole list. It makes me work so much quicker because I know what I need to use in most situations as I actually know the stuff I use.
Every now and then I find a new plugin that does something I couldn't do before and I'll add it to the list, but other than that I try to keep my collection minimal.
Software: Steinberg Cubase Artist 6.5.5 64-bit.
Hardware: HP elitebook 8530b with W7 Home 64-bit
Mackie Onyx 1620i - Steinberg Midex 8 - Steinberg CC121.
Analog: Alesis M1 - Behringer Powerplay Pro-XL - Studio Projects C3 - AKG K612Pro
Instruments: Yamaha DTX750k - Yamaha MO-6 - Waldorf Blofeld - Korg Wavedrum WDX.
3rd party plugins: Native Instruments Prism - Rob Papen Distort - Rob Papen Delay

My humble contributions to what could be considered music.
User avatar
Strophoid
Grand Senior Member
 
Posts: 3921
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 2:56 pm
Location: The Netherlands
Has thanked: 19 times
Been thanked: 119 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby foolomon » Sun Jan 05, 2014 11:40 pm

Funny, Ian, that I use pretty much that list too (save for Battery 4 instead of SSD). I do incorporate Vintage Keys for a Mark I, Vintage Organs for a B3, and Kontakt 5 for horns, but that's about it.

That's the reason why I started this thread: I rarely add to the plug-ins I have because I'm picky about what goes into the pool. I was hoping to get some feedback from people here to save me the trouble of downloading, trying them out, then deciding that I don't like them and uninstalling.

Off-topic, slightly: does anyone here have any experience with cinematic scoring using the NI offerings? Yes, I realize most of them are OEM'd via Heavyocity. Sara (my 13 year old) had a huge English project where she had to put together a video about one man's fight against genocide and I got the bug when I helped her put together the track backing her narration track.
_________________

"Just call me Larry."

Dell Lattitude E6430 laptop (Windows 7 64-bit + 16GB RAM)
AMD-Phenom II based system (Windows 7 64-bit + 8GB DDR3 RAM)
Tascam US-144 / M-Audio 2496 interfaces

Other hardware: Too much to mention here
Software: Cubase 6.5; Komplete 9; Melodyne Editor; various VSTs from Blue Cat Audio, FabFilter, Native Instruments, Sound Toys, and Variety of Sound

Stop by and visit!
User avatar
foolomon
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1288
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 7:42 pm
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 27 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby papi61 » Mon Jan 06, 2014 5:40 am

foolomon wrote:does anyone here have any experience with cinematic scoring using the NI offerings?


That's basically how I earn my living, and most of what I use is Kontakt-based. How can I help you with that? (Be a bit more specific, please.)
Desktop: i7 3770k, 32 GB RAM, nVidia GTX770 + GT640-DCSL fanless, 3 monitors (30" 2560x1600 + 2x 27" 1920x1080), 256 GB SSD (OS), 2 TB SATA III (audio), 3 TB SATA III (sample libraries), 3x 3 TB USB 3.0 (backup/archives), RME UFX, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Slaves: 2x i7 2700k, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 3 TB SATA III, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Laptop: 17" HP EliteBook 8770w (i7 3820QM 2.7 Ghz/3.7 Ghz max OC, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 1 TB SATA III), RME Babyface, Win 7 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3.
User avatar
papi61
Member
 
Posts: 570
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:56 pm
Has thanked: 16 times
Been thanked: 48 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby foolomon » Mon Jan 06, 2014 6:36 pm

I have a $25 e-voucher from my update to Komplete 9. I'm half tempted to buy Evolve Mutations Bundle, and want to know if it's a good product for the price. I don't have the need nor the discretionary funds to justify buying Damage (which really gets my blood pumping) so I'm looking for something to cut my teeth on.

Does that help?
_________________

"Just call me Larry."

Dell Lattitude E6430 laptop (Windows 7 64-bit + 16GB RAM)
AMD-Phenom II based system (Windows 7 64-bit + 8GB DDR3 RAM)
Tascam US-144 / M-Audio 2496 interfaces

Other hardware: Too much to mention here
Software: Cubase 6.5; Komplete 9; Melodyne Editor; various VSTs from Blue Cat Audio, FabFilter, Native Instruments, Sound Toys, and Variety of Sound

Stop by and visit!
User avatar
foolomon
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1288
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 7:42 pm
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 27 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby papi61 » Tue Jan 07, 2014 7:49 am

foolomon wrote:I have a $25 e-voucher from my update to Komplete 9. I'm half tempted to buy Evolve Mutations Bundle, and want to know if it's a good product for the price. I don't have the need nor the discretionary funds to justify buying Damage (which really gets my blood pumping) so I'm looking for something to cut my teeth on.

Does that help?


IMHO Evolve Mutation has been over-used by about every composer who writes for tv. Some of the loops have become so cliched, they're immediately recognizable by anyone who watches American tv dramas (and actually pays attention to the music, which --granted-- is not very common...) But if you don't mind that, you can sure have lots of fun with that library. Kids particularly love it: load the infamous "C menu" and let them play keys at random. There's no way they can do anything wrong... :lol:

Main drawback: it gets stale pretty quick, because after all it's just a collection of loops triggered by a keyboard, with minimal to no editing possibilities. Damage is far more advanced in that regard, albeit still being basically a collection of loops. But as you've noticed, it comes at a much higher price.

Here's a suggestion. Can you use your voucher toward the purchase of KINETIC METAL? That's an interesting library that's HIGHLY customizable and allows for virtually unlimited editing. In theory, it never gets old. And it doesn't cost more than Evolve Mutation and actually less than the bundle, if I remember correctly ($99.)
Desktop: i7 3770k, 32 GB RAM, nVidia GTX770 + GT640-DCSL fanless, 3 monitors (30" 2560x1600 + 2x 27" 1920x1080), 256 GB SSD (OS), 2 TB SATA III (audio), 3 TB SATA III (sample libraries), 3x 3 TB USB 3.0 (backup/archives), RME UFX, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Slaves: 2x i7 2700k, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 3 TB SATA III, Win 8.1 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5.

Laptop: 17" HP EliteBook 8770w (i7 3820QM 2.7 Ghz/3.7 Ghz max OC, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, 1 TB SATA III), RME Babyface, Win 7 Pro x64, Vienna Ensemble Pro 5, Cubase 7.5, Sonar X3.
User avatar
papi61
Member
 
Posts: 570
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:56 pm
Has thanked: 16 times
Been thanked: 48 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby foolomon » Tue Jan 07, 2014 3:19 pm

I looked at Kinetic Metal, but with no experience upon which I can judge the quality I didn't know if it was any good relative to the other offerings. I do remember not being as impressed with the audio demos as I was with Evolve or Damage, but maybe that's just a commentary on the demos and not the solution.

I'll have another look today because your characterization of it being "highly customizable" is incredibly appealing to me.
_________________

"Just call me Larry."

Dell Lattitude E6430 laptop (Windows 7 64-bit + 16GB RAM)
AMD-Phenom II based system (Windows 7 64-bit + 8GB DDR3 RAM)
Tascam US-144 / M-Audio 2496 interfaces

Other hardware: Too much to mention here
Software: Cubase 6.5; Komplete 9; Melodyne Editor; various VSTs from Blue Cat Audio, FabFilter, Native Instruments, Sound Toys, and Variety of Sound

Stop by and visit!
User avatar
foolomon
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1288
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 7:42 pm
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 27 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby foolomon » Tue Jan 07, 2014 3:23 pm

I remember more specifically what my issue was with KM: it seems well suited for building tracks but seems to be lacking in the "tension" department, which I associate with heavily percussive material. (Of course, I may be wrong but that's just inexperience speaking again.)
_________________

"Just call me Larry."

Dell Lattitude E6430 laptop (Windows 7 64-bit + 16GB RAM)
AMD-Phenom II based system (Windows 7 64-bit + 8GB DDR3 RAM)
Tascam US-144 / M-Audio 2496 interfaces

Other hardware: Too much to mention here
Software: Cubase 6.5; Komplete 9; Melodyne Editor; various VSTs from Blue Cat Audio, FabFilter, Native Instruments, Sound Toys, and Variety of Sound

Stop by and visit!
User avatar
foolomon
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1288
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 7:42 pm
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 27 times

Re: "Best Free VSTs of 2013"

Postby foolomon » Tue Jan 07, 2014 3:31 pm

This user-created video is a great overview of KM's capabilities by showing it in action over several minutes.

Kinetic Metal demo
_________________

"Just call me Larry."

Dell Lattitude E6430 laptop (Windows 7 64-bit + 16GB RAM)
AMD-Phenom II based system (Windows 7 64-bit + 8GB DDR3 RAM)
Tascam US-144 / M-Audio 2496 interfaces

Other hardware: Too much to mention here
Software: Cubase 6.5; Komplete 9; Melodyne Editor; various VSTs from Blue Cat Audio, FabFilter, Native Instruments, Sound Toys, and Variety of Sound

Stop by and visit!
User avatar
foolomon
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1288
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 7:42 pm
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 27 times

Previous

Return to Steinberg Lounge

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests