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Waterphone by Spitfire Audio
Hg2O by Spitfire Audio is Soundware (samples or presets that load into other products) for macOS and Windows.
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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 instrument 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 "montserrat" pre-amps to a beautifully serviced Studer 2" tape machine and then into digital at 96k via the best Prism AD converters this is an unparalleled signal chain.

We'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 instrument is often used to evoke mystery and suspense.

Articulations 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 then the Mercury Synth (various sound design patches with full Albion III controls).

Presented for the Kontakt platform (full version required) at 48k 24-bit with 8 different mic positions.

{See video at top of page}


Latest User Reviews

Average user rating of 5.00 from 1 review

Reviewed By Kavokei
November 19, 2019

Beautifully recorded spooky textures, though surprisingly versatile. Well-priced too, certainly cheaper than a real waterphone.

Read Review

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