Review Chamber Orchestra 2 by Versilian Studios (VSCO 2)

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Moving past it’s inconsistencies it’s easy to see that Versilian Studios’ Chamber Orchestra 2 is in a league of it’s own, offering a more-than-complete nice sounding set of orchestral instruments at a very low price point.

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Jump to the Videos of Chamber Orchestra 2

Jump to the Videos of Chamber Orchestra 2

Review Chamber Orchestra 2 by Versilian Studios – VSCO 2

Samuel Gossner of Versilian Studios started working on the first version of VSCO with a simple idea: “make an original orchestral library better than general midi.” After six years of development VSCO 2 has launched superseding that goal with the help of dozens of players around the world and the design and implementation skills of Simon Autenrieth.

SoloObe

The completed library is a god send for students, academics and anyone dreaming of getting a very nice orchestra to realise their mockups. And just from my time reviewing the library I can see how this would be a very efficient orchestra for pro composers looking for a light-weight library for sketching or even incorporating some of the rare or quirky instruments from the library in to their  work for new and unique timbres.

VSCO 2 comes in 3 versions including;

VSCO 2 FREE Edition:
Downloads about 1GB of raw samples, sfz format, nki format, and a WIP EXS24 format.

VSCO 2: Standard Edition:
Downloads as 3.8 GB and contains the main instruments of a chamber orchestra, and a few instruments from the full orchestra delivered in NKI format for use with the full version of Kontakt 5.5+. Standard Edition sells for $99

VSCO 2: Professional Edition:
Downloads as 12.8 GB made up of over 300 individual NKIs f for use with the full version of Kontakt 5.5+. The PRO Edition comes with multiple mic positions, and additional “rare” instruments including bass ophicleide, alto saxhorn, cornets, and eight individually sampled triangles. Pro Edition sells for $229
A USB version (Go Edition) of the PRO library is also available.

 

Chamber Orchestra 2 is available from Versilian Studios

Thoughts

Many developers have learned the key to a great library is focus. And with the slew of “EPIC” & “Hollywood” orchestral libraries out there (with the price tags to match), it seems that Versilian Studios have found a niche with Chamber Orchestra 2 by delivering a more than full set of nice sounding orchestral instruments at a very low price point.

For my review I had a chance to check out the PRO Edition of Chamber Orchestra 2.

The library comes with 300+ NKIs and does require the full version of Kontakt.

The majority of the instrument come with a dry, close mic position. By default the built in reverb loads up with the instrument. As I have stated hundreds of times in my other reviews I usually steer clear of kontakt effects and opt to use a premium plug in for my room sound. With VSCO 2 having close mic positions for every instrument I previewed, this makes it a perfect library for bussing into my favorite orchestral hall. VSCO 2’s instruments load up with a grand orchestral hall that will be suitable for demos and those lacking premium reverb plugins.

SoloTrumpet

A good majority of the instruments come with several additional mic positions, but this is inconsistent and varies from instrument to instrument. Many instruments contain scripted legato patches (some with vibrato and non-vib ) and I found it to be acceptable. To be blunt the legato doesn’t stand up to other deep-sampled 3GB libraries I own, but it’s not bad especially considering several of these instruments sample sets weigh in at 50 – 200MB total!

You can see the complete list of instruments and articulations here.

I found some of the highlights to be the sound of the woodwinds. Maybe it was because they are close mic’d and so intimate, but the character really seemed to shine consistently across these woodwind instruments.

SoloObe

Other highlight include the sampled Pipe Organ instrument that was captured by Ivy Audio’s by Simon Dalzell and the extensive percussion instrumetns including the nice dry snare sample, several articulations for the Brake Drum’s nki and a quirky Ethnic Xylophone.
For the most part VSCO 2 has a very intimate sound. Part of that live and intimate sound comes from the inconsistencies and little tuning issues some of the instruments have. For me this adds authenticity and makes for some very believable performances although I know other composers are sticklers for absolute tuning and note-to-note play consistency. If that statment rings true for you, then this library might not be for you.

Many of the instruments shine with so much character, they are sure to make it in to one of my scores as I am always looking for ways to expand and create unique ensembles with creative and original timbre.

SoloOphicleide

I think a lot of pro composers might get some use out of this library for adding some unique tones or some of the more rare instruments (like the Solo Ophicliede or AltoSax Horn) to their scores. Although some of the solo strings won’t cut it for exposed legato in my commercial scores and a couple of the instruments I played had a noticeable loop for the sustain articulations when held. I really enjoyed several of the adventurous articulations and found they could add something new and exciting to a score.

A couple times I heard an audible loop in some sustains articulations when held.

I love the look of this interface and another PRO is the controls including many key-switchable articulations usually found in more advanced libraries. The interface also gives you controls for stereo width and pan.

Solo-Cello

Overall I heard some very “live” sounding playback for the majority of the instruments. The collections mostly shine with more intimate performances and I think will fall flat when trying to achieve a larger “EPIC” sound. That said, some of the instruments like the Organ and Trombones are full of powerful.

I would recommend VSCO 2 for students, academics and even for some uses for professional composers. For professionals I wouldn’t recommend VSCO 2 as your only complete orchestral librar. The collection falls short with the lack of intensity at higher dynamics, legato quality and some oddities in performance.

VSCO 2 could be very useful for pros looking for a lightweight full orchestra collection with a good set of articulations for sketching

However, VSCO 2 could be very useful for those looking for a lightweight full orchestra collection with a good set of articulations for sketching. I also would recommend this library for pro composers who are seeking some very real and raw instrument sounds for special occasions or for creating unique ensemble timbres.

At the price points (including a FREE Edition) it is hard to go wrong getting a copy of VSCO 2 if either of those uses appeal to you. With all my critique I am walking away from VSCO 2 with an emotional bond to it’s unique and quirky characteristics and rare instruments.

 

Chamber Orchestra 2 is available from Versilian Studios

 

Demos of Chamber Orchestra 2 (VSCO 2)

 

Videos of Chamber Orchestra 2 (VSCO 2)