Review: Ancient Greek Percussion by Soundiron

by

Ancient Greek Percussion is the new library by Soundiron that follows the previously released Ancient Greek Strings. It features six hand percussion instruments deeply sampled with up to 12 round robins and 10 velocity layers per articulation. Like the Strings, it has a four layer system that allows you to mix together the natural instruments’ sound with ambience and synth textures. It requires the full version of Kontakt.

Jump to the Videos of Ancient Greek Percussion by Soundiron

Jump to the Demos of Ancient Greek Percussion by Soundiron

 

Review: Ancient Greek Percussion by Soundiron

After releasing the Ancient Greek Strings, Soundiron came out with a new library from the same historical tradition: Ancient Greek Percussion, a collection of six hand percussion instruments: Crotalum, Kymbalon, Sistrum, 15-inch Tympanon, 22-inch Tympanon, and Tympanon Zill. Like the Strings, these instruments were built by Lyravlos and recorded by the composer, producer and sound designer John Valasis, marking a line of continuity between the two products, and played by Michael Stefos. The full version of Kontakt (5.5 or later) is required in order to run this library. It comes with one single master .nki file plus 20 custom Sound-Designed FX and Ambient presets.

Ancient Greek Percussion sells for $49.00 (intro price $33.00) from Soundiron

Thoughts

The user manual is very detailed and a reading of that is suggested to fully understand what you can do with this library. It features also a description of the instruments themselves. The GUI is good-looking and very similar to the Ancient Greek Strings. By clicking on the settings symbol at the top of the interface, you will open the Advanced Control Tab for access to the LFO, Filter and Arpeggiator systems. The LFO allows you to assign an oscillator wave shape (Sine, Square, Triangle, Sawtooth, or Random) to a chosen parameter (Volume, Bass, Treble, Pitch, Pan, Reso, Frequency), while the filter lets you select between 13 different filter types. A scale lock system is available to choose a key and a scale type to easily play within a desired key and scale (not so effective on the natural instruments but it works well on the ambience and synth layers.

Unlike the Ancient Greek Strings, this library comes with two mic positions: close and far, assigned to the first and the second layer, while the third layer is assigned to Ambience sounds and the fourth one to the Sub-Synths. In order to choose the instrument, you need to select the layer (1 or 2) and switch between them in the Articulation menu to the right of the parameters knobs.
In the lower zone you can control the per layer volume, attack, offset, release, vibrato, pan and microtuning by using the seven knobs. If you click on the black small circle under the volume knob (that will light up when turned on) the parameters’ values will show up.
Clicking on the FX Rack button at the bottom of the interface, you will see a bunch of slots in which you can load effects like EQ, Distortion, Delay, Phaser, Reverb, Tape Saturation, and many others, to get an even more customized sound, including two post-send slots. You can then save your own preset or load one of the nine that come with the library.

If you already own, or are planning to purchase, the Ancient Greek Strings, I warmly suggest you get this library too, since this is the natural addition to it.

And even if you don’t have it, the price of $49.00 ($33.00 intro price at the time of writing) is a very good deal. These percussion instruments sound pretty realistic and warm, and you have both single hits and rolls available. Furthermore, the layers system allows you to use them both with their traditional sound and to create FX and Sound-designed textures to create your own sound. The up to ten dynamic layers and twelve round robins per articulation help you to achieve a very detailed sound and realism. Beyond the single percussion instruments, the library comes with an ensemble patch you can select from the Articulation menu for the selected layer. The two mic positions assigned to different layers let you use them also to experiment new sounds, for example assigning one instrument to the close mic and a different instrument to the far mic.

The library also comes with 20 FX presets you can load as different .nki files. Like the Strings, it doesn’t support the NKS protocol, so it doesn’t need to be activated via Native Access.

Facts

One master .nki instrument plus 20 custom Sound-Designed FX and Ambient presets
24 bit / 48 kHz uncompressed PCM wav samples
The library weights 3.06 GB installed
It requires the full version of Kontakt (5.5 or later). It doesn’t work with the free Kontakt Player
Intro price is $33.00 at the moment of writing

Ancient Greek Percussion sells for $49.00 (intro price $33.00) from Soundiron

 

Demos of Ancient Greek Percussion by Soundiron

Videos of Ancient Greek Percussion by Soundiron

Contributor Giuseppe Corcella reviews Ancient Greek Percussion by Soundiron
“Ancient Greek Percussion is the new library by Soundiron that follows the previously released Ancient Greek Strings. It features six hand percussion instruments deeply sampled with up to 12 round robins and 10 velocity layers per articulation. Like the Strings, it has a four layers system that allows you to mix together the natural instruments’ sound with ambience and synth textures. It requires the full version of Kontakt.”