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Spitfire Audio has announced that Hg2O, a new Kontakt format sample library, will be released April 18th, 2013, at the introductory price of £33 (RRP £44) - this offer will last 10 days.

Hg2O is a set of samples performed by Paul Clarvis of a metallic atonal acoustic musical instrument consisting of a stainless steel resonator bowl or pan with a cylindrical neck and bronze rods of different lengths and diameters around the rim of the bowl. The resonator may contain a small amount of water giving the waterphone a vibrant ethereal sound that has appeared in countless movie soundtracks, record albums, and live performances.

Recorded by Jake Jackson at Lyndhurst Hall – Air Studios, one of the finest scoring stages in the world, through a huge array of priceless vintage microphones via Neve "monserrat" pre-amps to a Studer 2" tape machine and then into digital at 96k via the best Prism AD converters.

They've sampled deeply both bowed or drummed with movements to affect the water inside. This creates the resonant characteristics of the bowl and rods in combination with the movement of the water. The sound of the waterphone is often used to evoke mystery and suspense.

Articulations will include:

  • C0 to B0 – bowed rods 1 to 7 (4 RR and two bow positions, high and low)
    • bow position controlled by velocity with split at 64.
    • MW controls water level – empty at 0, half at 64, full at 127.
  • C1 to C2 – plucked rods 1 to 7 and 'under' (4 RR and MW control of water).
  • C3 to A3 – hand sweeps.
  • C4 to A4 – brushes sweeps.
  • C5 to A5 – fast bow sweeps.
  • C6 to B6 – bowed sweeps.

MW can either switch samples or xfade them for water control. Three 'tuned' keyboard tines plucked and bowed, and one 'gamelan' style untuned. And the Mercury Synth (various sound design patches with full Albion III controls).

Hg2O is presented for the Kontakt platform (full version required) at 48kHz 24-bit with 8 different mic positions.

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