NEW RELEASE | THE ORCHESTRA COMPLETE 3
THE ORCHESTRA COMPLETE has returned for another incredible edition, pushing the boundaries of composition in ways previously unforeseen. It follows the path of its predecessors with the stress on our interweaving orchestration engine, while still expanding in inspiring new ways. Gathering the feedback from our users, we’ve now added a custom sequence designer, broadened the scope of the free play mode, re-imagined how to handle playing legato and staccato live, and completely re-recorded the woodwinds section with incredible new depth and versatility.
“THE ORCHESTRA COMPLETE 3 is a logical continuation of our orchestral color palette,” Tilman Sillescu, co-founder and Creative Director at Sonuscore explains. With STRINGS OF WINTER and HORNS OF HELL, we had already expanded the string and brass sections with special articulations and unusual instruments. Now with WOODS OF THE WILD, it is time to give the same treatment to woodwinds, adding more articulations and new instruments.
“We’ve also added some great new features to the Ensemble nki to improve quick sketching capabilities even more,” Tilman said.
THE ORCHESTRA: A CREATIVE GOLDMINE
There has never been a shortage of virtual orchestras on the market. Ever since composing moved into the digital space, companies have sprouted up to sample their own libraries. But it was a world of innovation that was trapped in one lane: the depth of recording.
THE ORCHESTRA was a completely unique concept on the market at the time. Our focus wasn’t so much on its high-quality recordings, but on how the user would interact with the tool. We wanted to create something that would inspire people in different ways than any other instrument, so we decided to bring something past a mere orchestral library: a real-time orchestration engine.
“THE ORCHESTRA was a complete novelty at the time,” Tilman said. “It had the ability to create complete animated orchestral arrangements in a very short time by just playing simple chords. It was a creative goldmine and an incredible time saver for any composer.”
WATCH THE TRAILER
THE ENGINE EXPANDED
The Ensemble Engine is the heart of THE ORCHESTRA COMPLETE and what makes this virtual orchestra a real pleasure to play. Just press a chord and it automatically plays these deep and complex arrangements. This was powered by the arpeggiator and envelope designer, with individual note assignment for all engine presets.
FREE PLAY MODE
One update here was to expand our Free Play Mode feature to all voicings and enable note placing on our main page. “It allows the user to automatically assign the chord tones to the individual instrument groups,” explains Tilman. “We created over 80 playable voicings, especially for this purpose – when you play a chord on the keyboard, you can create beautiful orchestral timbres.”
THE ORCHESTRA had already given one the feeling of being their own personal orchestrator. But by making the individual note placing accessible for the Free Play Mode, it really makes creating these beautiful, intricate timbres a very easy and simple thing to do.
Never mind selecting one of the hundreds of presets that we designed to take advantage of this change. With just a click on the Engine toggle, you can change it to Free Play Mode and then design your own orchestrations by controlling which instruments play which notes of your note input. This feature alone can help redefine how you confront composing in a DAW.
“We also noticed that our system with interlocking arpeggiators had certain limitations,” Tilman went on. “That’s why we developed the Sequence Designer in the engine and made it available. If you select SEQ in the arpeggiator, then you can specify 100% exact sequences of notes within the played material.”
The new Sequencer feature gives a level of customization that was unprecedented in our THE ORCHESTRA engine. Though we before offered all the arpeggios you can typically find in an instrument of this caliber, we figured that would not be enough. The new Sequence Designer gives the ability to create both user-defined sequences and rhythms, so that you can really capture the momentum and spirit of the piece you’re working on.
It certainly allowed us to create more interesting presets, but more importantly it enables you, the user, to have a greater control over your passages. Tilman adds: “You can now design rhythms and tone sequences that are in a much more musical perspective, sounding freer and more unlimited, and even more like small compositional elements.”
WATCH THE PRESET PLAYTHROUGH
Articulations are always hard for orchestral engines to handle. The question of whether to use keyswitches or simply a different nki or vst always comes up. We believe though that the less a composer has to worry about these things, the better. So we came up with a new option – we could define how the nki detects the need for legato versus staccato.
We call our new system Pure Performance Legato. We have not only equipped all the new instruments with this, but also revised almost all the previously existing legatos. As a result, the instruments play more smoothly and realistically than before.
PURE PERFORMANCE LEGATO
“We had been searching for a really good legato tool for years, because we were not really satisfied with the previous system of placing recorded legato transitions over long notes,” Tilman explains. “Our scripting department has now found a new intelligent legato system, which shall remain a secret at this point😉.”
The new Pure Performance Legato allows you to play both fast true legato and staccato runs without any problems. The newly designed engine distinguishes between both articulations without the need for keyswitches. The amazing playability of the legato is the result of an intense amount of work. Our scripters had to custom fit more than 400 transitions per instrument to ensure the legato was very smooth and playable.
“It involved an incredible amount of balancing work and was a hell of a job,” Tilman summed up. “Every single transition from tone to tone had to be precisely balanced. But now it sounds so beautiful and feels like playing a real instrument that we think it definitely was worth all the hard work! 😊”
THE ORCHESTRA COMPLETE 3
THE ORCHESTRA started as a tool to speed up the process of orchestral composing. But in the latest updates, it’s become even more than that. It’s an engine of inspiration and creation.
As Tilman puts it: “With the countless new and also reworked previous presets, the new buttery smooth legato and the multitude of orchestral instruments with all articulations, THE ORCHESTRA COMPLETE 3 is a real bomb for composers – you better get it!”
You can get your own copy of THE ORCHESTRA COMPLETE 3 below, and you can even purchase WOODS OF THE WILD as a standalone. Sign up for our newsletter to read our next blog about how we approached creating WOODS OF THE WILD.