Review: Hollywood Brass from East West


Scroll Down To Read My Hollywood Brass Review


Demo Music Using Hollywood Brass

The first thing I do when checking out a library is listen to see how expressive and musical the virtual instrument can be in action. Here are a few demos using East West Hollywood Brass Gold including one of the first tracks I wrote after adding Hollywood Brass to my template.


Review of Hollywood Brass Gold from East West

First Thoughts

To be honest, I have tended to stay away from the PLAY engine as it always seemed to give me problems in the past. Even taking this in to consideration I purchased Hollywood Brass Gold Edition a few months ago because in my opinion, it was simply the best sounding brass sample library out at the time and I needed a Brass upgrade. The Gold and Silver Editions only come with one mic position. I got East West Hollywood Brass Gold at for $399.00 (it retails for 499.00)

Reverb & Impulses

The library comes with it’s own convolution reverb impulses (taken from Quantum Leap SPACES) and they sound amazing.
Even with just one mic position (The Platinum comes with 5 positions) the reverb included in the instrument makes a world of difference. I absolutely love the reverb. So much so, that Quantum Leap Spaces is on my radar for a future purchase.

No Key Switching

I was also aware that there was no key switching built into this instrument (although East West has stated that it will be incorporated in a future release). I found an easy work around by loading multiple instruments into the PLAY engine on different MIDI channels on the same track. All I have to do then is change MIDI channels to access a different articulation. A little work around but worth it for the quality of the sounds.

Controller Data

I find myself using a little less controller data than usual to get the expressiveness I desire out of this virtual instrument. This is a plus as it makes the process of scoring go a little more quickly.

Playback Issues

I have gotten some inconsistent playback with the PLAY engine loaded using Hollywood Brass. I asked around and it seems like a few people have “odd” things happening with the engine.

On my current one computer set up my orchestral template can use up to 28GB of my 32GB of ram. If I do have problems usually all playback has problem from maxing out my ram.
Since adding Hollywood Brass (which is my only loaded PLAY library) I will sometimes get inconsistent playback of just the PLAY instruments (notes not triggered or playback is out of time) when my kontakt libraries perform without issue. As a work-around I sometimes will bounce my brass down and just move on.

Wrap Up

In my opinion Hollywood Brass is the best sounding Brass sample library that was available at the time I purchased it (Jan 2015) It sounds amazing right out the gate and I find I use minimal controller data to get very expressive sounds. Despite the instrument having No Key Switch functionality and some inconsistency in playback with the PLAY engine this is my pick for a brass library.




Details from East West

• Solo Trumpet
• 2 Trumpets
• 3 Trumpets
• Solo French Horn
• 2 French Horns
• 6 French Horns
• Solo Trombone
• 2 Tenor
• 1 Bass Trombone
• Solo Tuba
• trills at 3 dynamics
• Solo Cimbasso
• LowBrass Section (consisting of : 2 Tenor Bones, 1 Bass trombone, 1 tuba and 1 Cimbasso

  • Produced by Doug Rogers, Nick Phoenix, and Thomas Bergersen
  • Sound engineered by Shawn Murphy (Academy Award, C.A.S. (Cinema Audio Society), BAFTA, and EMMY award-winng sound engineer)
  • Extensive multiple-dynamic “true legato” solo and ensemble brass, with multiple sized sections and mutes
  • 5 user-mixable mic positions, extensive articulations, and no shortcuts!
  • Includes new PLAY 3 64-bit/32-bit software on both MAC and PC, powerful scripting for ease of use, more user control and detail than any other collection, all recorded in the world famous EASTWEST Studio 1, the home of major Hollywood soundtracks and television themes.
  • true legato intervals at 3 dynamics that are smooth and realistic in all situations
  • true connected legato repetitions at 3 dynamics
  • sustained legato samples from pp all the way to fff. And when we say pp and fff, we really mean it!
  • true double tonguing for all instruments and sections
  • expressive sustains
  • mute sustains and staccatos
  • 8 way staccato round robin at 4 dynamics
  • 4 way round robin marcato short at 3 dynamics
  • 4 way round robin marcato long at 3 dynamics
  • multi dynamic playable runs patches that will inject real life into your brass compositions
  • trills at 3 dynamics
  • multi speed and multi dynamic repetition performances that work flawlessly with PLAY’s superior time engine
  • multi speed time synced crescendos
  • multi dynamic portato that will breath life into softer compositions
  • sforzando
  • slide trombone legato
  • falls
  • various effects, clusters, and more



Videos From East West

Hollywood Brass – Trumpets Tutorial


Hollywood Brass – Trombones (Low Brass) Tutorial


Hollywood Brass – French Horns Tutorial

Hollywood Brass – Tuba Tutorial