Review: Evolution Jazz Archtop by Orange Tree Samples


Jazz Archtop’s samples really shine in the Evolution engine giving users the functionality and control to create amazingly realistic performances in all the classic jazz and blues styles.


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Jump to the Videos of Evolution Jazz Archtop

Jump to the Videos of Evolution Jazz Archtop


Review: Evolution Jazz Archtop


Orange Tree Samples has released Evolution Jazz Archtop, a hollow body jazz guitar sample library designed for use in traditional and contemporary jazz as well as R&B, pop, latin, and funk music.

Jazz Archtop is a Kontakt player instrument and delivers a warm and inviting tone thanks to the recording sessions directed by Guy Randle at the Rosewood Recording Company. Analog equipment was used in the recording process to achieve this wonderful sound.

Evolution Jazz Archtop sells for $179 (USD) from Orange Tree Samples


I am no stranger to the extremely powerful Evolution engine Orange Tree Samples has developed.If you have seen SLR reviews of the Evolution series guitars ( Strawberry, Modern Nylon, Rick 12 ), you know I am a big fan of the guitar libraries from Orange Tree Samples. Earlier this year SLR awarded Orange Tree’s Steel String Acoustic a TOP PICK in the acoustic guitar Virtual Instrument category. With the release of a new Jazz guitar library from the developer, I was more excited than ever to hear the sounds and dig into this instrument.

The sample set in Jazz Archtop really shine in the Evolution engine giving users the functionality and control to create amazingly realistic performances in the jazz and blues style.

I have been in love with the sound of the hollow body jazz style guitar for years. It is so specialized and a few steps away from most of the work I do that I have never been able to justify buying myself to purchase an authentic hollow body jazz guitar. I was thrilled to see Orange Tree release the Jazz Archtop because now I could get all the expressiveness and tone in my rig. As I fired up the instrument I was not disappointed.


Evolution Jazz Archtop has a great sound. It has a warm, yet clear tone. It delivers as promised and will be a wonderful addition if you’re looking to add a virtual guitar for your folk, country, and bluegrass music or scores.



One of the secrets to the Jazz Archtop’s realistic playback are the huge selection of articulations that include palm mutes, mutes, natural harmonics, tapping, string slaps and guitar body hits. Each of the articulations can be mapped to Velocity, Keyswitch, Controllers and more. As with all of Orange Tree Sample’s Evolution guitar libraries, Jazz Archtop contains legato samples for slides, hammer-ons, and pull-offs.


As with all the Evolution guitar libraries, the SETUP panel allows for tweaks of several parameters and adjustments. This gives the user controls over the parameters such as physical modeling, pick position, track doubling/tripling/quadrupling and many more controls.

The additional controls and parameters such as pick modeling, noise and pick position placement, put the Evolution guitars in the top of their class.

With Jazz Archtop, Orange Tree has also included the “Guitar Signal” parameter in the SETUP panel. This Guitar Signal allows users to slide a fader from the timbre of the samples as-is (standard) to an Enhanced sound that has been processed to increase the richness and sustain of the guitar.


Jazz Archtop comes with the powerful Evolution’s STRUM engine.  The STRUM engine allows for some extremely realistic strumming with both keyswitches and a pattern editor. You can easily create your own strumming patterns, save and load custom presets as well as load one of the two dozens included strum presets.

This feature alone has my guitar in the corner collecting dust as the sound can be so realistic that I don’t need to re-track live guitar when a last minute change in a score adjusts tempo, chord progression or time signature changes.

This feature alone has my real guitar in the corner collecting dust.

As I have mentioned before I am usually not a fan of using effects in Kontakt, but with the same great set of stomp boxes and amp modeling as the other Evolution series instruments, I find them to do just the trick to add a little bit of delay, verb or some special effects to the instrument.


One of my only real criticisms is that the presets seem very focused on the “jazz” styles. In previous Evolution libraries, I felt like the presets had a much broader range of timbres.  It is understandable as the guitar was designed for the jazz/blues styles, but with the power of the engine OT could have really gone far out to craft some unexpected presets.  The presets do sound great delivering a good selection of jazz, funk, latin and blues styles. I found the presets are usable right out the gate, but also are great starting points as I was able to quickly find a timbre and make some adjustment to sculpt my own sound and preset.

Jazz Archtop is another wonderful contribution to the Evolution series of guitar libraries. With it’s focused tone, it’s not an all-purpose electric guitar, but it definitely allows every composer to jam out like Wes Montgomery, John Scofield or B. B. King.



Jazz Archtop downloads as 1.55GB ( compressed files using the lossless NCW audio format). Samples are delivered as 24-bit.

Jazz Archtop sells for $179.00 from Orange Tree Samples


Official Demos of Evolution Jazz Archtop

Dollars to Donuts

Spray On Cheese

Red Coast

Night Drive by Hagai Davidoff

Official Videos of Evolution Jazz Archtop