Review: Eclipse by Wide Blue Sound (currently 30% OFF)
250 Presets to browse for inspiration
Very straight forward interface with a massive amount of control
Very light weight – only 600mb installed!
Orbit system uses 4 sound sources, limiting the amount of more complex rhythms you can create.
Eclipse is a cinematic synth, atmosphere, and pulse designer that is focused around the core concept of its engine – the “Orbit” engine. This unique modulation system is easy to understand and the amount of control available in the interface is very impressive. With a little practice, Eclipse could easily become your go-to cinematic pulse toolkit.
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Review: Eclipse by Wide Blue Sound
This particular library is not the first of its kind from Wide Blue Sound. Eclipse is actually the second installment in the “Plantery” series. Eclipse’s predecessor, simply called “Orbit”, was the originator of the titular engine. Eclipse was introduced as a sort of darker little brother of Orbit, focusing on more gritty, eerie, and heavy sound sources that are perfect for scoring horror and action.
Considering the remarkably small sample pool (only 600mb!), most of the versatility in this library comes from the different ways to manipulate those samples. The interface here is incredibly important. Luckily for us users, Wide Blue Sound has done a phenomenal job creating a usable and well organized interface with plenty of options to keep us entertained and inspired.
The primary panel is where most of the action takes place. The 4 columns that take up most of the space represent the 4 sound sources that the engine orbits through. The top of the column is where you pick a sound source – the most basic aspect of this engine. Below, you can control the pan, gain, tuning, and filter cutoff/resonance of each individual source. Further below, on the bottom of the interface, you can select a waveform for the orbit – The “pulse” sawtooth form gives you instant attacks and quick decays. The “Chop” square wave cuts in and out between the sources, which is great for glitchy sounds. The sine “flow” wave smoothly fades through the sources, creating more of an atmospheric pad. You can also control some parameters of the waveform, such as punch, rate, attack, and depth, depending on the selected wave. The randomizer button at the top right is another very useful feature if you need to create new combinations of sounds to keep yourself inspired.
The effects panel is a fairly standard rack interface. Here we have a scream, distort, delay, convolve, chorus, and warmth effect. They all come with their standard controls. The standout effects in my opinion are the distortion and convolution. Distortion is a great tool to add to the “dark” aspect of Eclipse, and the convolution comes with several creative impulse responses that can give your sounds strange and interesting reverb tails.
The Sequencer panel opens up a whole new world of sound manipulation. There are 4 sequencers that can be turned on or off. Each sequencer has a drop-down menu with a huge list of parameters that can be manipulated in rhythm. The strength of the sequencer’s effect can be adjusted, as well as the amount of steps and the subdivision/rate (for example, 16th note or 8th note). With these tools, you can sequence nearly every available parameter in the interface, including volume, FX knobs, and even the waveform that the engine is using to orbit. It really does bring limitless options for movement and rhythm in the finished sound.
Eclipse is much more of a synthesizer than it is a sample library. Technically of course, it uses a sampled sound set, but those samples are essentially no more than a starting point from which you can create interesting rhythms and dark atmospheres via the immense amount of control available in the interface. However, even if you aren’t much of a synth tweaker, there is still plenty in this package to get you going right away. There are 250 presets organized by the type of waveform they use, including “pulses”, “chops”, “flows” and then an extra category called “Effects”, which contains more weird and aleatoric sounds.
The variety here is nothing to take for granted. You could easily write multiple tracks by only scratching the surface with the presets. The pulses are, in my opinion, the most useful category, although the atmospheres are very interesting. Almost every “Cinematic” library has a variety of atmospheric patches, but Eclipse stands out because of the moving and flowing nature of its pads. Thanks to the Orbit engine, there will almost always be some element of movement and evolution flowing through the ambient sounds. The only downfall I’ve encountered in this engine is its exclusive use of 4 sound sources. This is a good and safe number for most music, but it limits what you can do with the less standard time signatures such as 7/8 and 5/4.
While I can’t comment on “realism” for a synthetic library like this, I can say that the available sound sources and rhythmic abilities are nothing short of inspiring to work with.
As with all of our reviews, please check out the official audio and video links to make sure that this is the right tool for you.
Eclipse by Wide Blue Sound normally sell for $149. See Discount offers of Wide Blue Sound at PB .