It's amazing that there is no higher reviews on this product. I just discovered it since the last few months and already can place it easily in soundtrack context.
It's amazing how this company develop such a unique way of programming sounds...since Tassman I was always impress...
The GUI is really nice and easy to understand. The preset management could have been better presented, but easy enough to get through it fast.
The sound is truly unique and does have quite interesting harmonics. It probably depends on which presets you make your appreciation. When I use it the last time, a warm shivering sound was coming out of this synth. It is not the type of overtones that make your ears screech, but the type that gives you Goosebumps (I can't stand those airy high-end bell types of sounds all the time. It makes me go crazy after a while) I like crystal clear sounds, but with some warmth in it, and this VST is capable of achieving such sound.
I didn't work a lot with the features presented, but from what I saw it's capable of doing some quite original sounds. It's probably less deep in programmability than some other great synth out there, but it can achieve something you may not be able to do easily in other synths.
I had some info online and with a small documentation attach...but since this VST is pretty intuitive, there is no need for bigger documentation...just simple and clear explanations.
There are some very good presets in the bank, could always use more, but I think it is a really good start with what they offer.
So far customer supports seems to be good, I had some problems at start with downloading the software and there were helpful telling out to do it the easiest way and even give me an other option.
The buy is totally worthy if you buy the Bundle deal..., which is what I did. It includes some other great gems from AAS such as Lounge Lizard, Guitar Strum, Ultra Analog VA-1 and the super great synth Tassman...all good vsts that can find their places in many soundtracks.
Stability is extra good...no problem and really not hungry for CPU....
This VST is great buy! :) And I think this company should be well more known on KVR ...they truly make some unique and very good VST’s !
GUI: it's clear and intuitive, and lets you begin to tweak presets without even reading the manual. Two pages: one devoted to the modeling parameters, the other devoted to FX, arpeggiator. SOUND: Sound is quite good, but not for all the stringed instruments. It is great for plucked instruments, while other, as piano sound not convincing at all. The bowed instruments, while capturing some aspects of the real sounds are never convincing and often unstable, expecially when you move controllers. In any case, the sound produced by this synth is somehow dull. It is: it lacks higher harmonics, so it lacks realism! FEATURES: These are good, there are: a pick up and amplifier simulator (for electrified instruments), there's a filter, an arpeggiator, and a good FX section. DOCUMENTATION: the boxed version comes with a 50 pages printed manual. This manual is extremely clear. In my opinion it should have a section of tutorilas on how to program effective patches. Presets: it comes with lots of presets, and an extremely good thing is that AAS site hosts a page in which customers can share their patches. In any case I think that many presets are way too similar to distinguish one from the other, and many of them are not convincing at all. In my opinion the best presets are obtained in pad and ambient category, it is in the categories where this synth has not to emulate real instruments. CUSTOMER SUPPORT: I never needed support, but I cannot submit the review without giving it a value. So I decided to give 10, but it can be read as a NOT AVAILABLE. VALUE FOR MONEY: That's the weak point, in my opinion. Quality is almost good, but the price is extremely high for what you get. STABILITY: Never had a problem with it
SOME MORE COMMENTS: The idea behind this synth is great. Making a musician able to create his own stringed instruments is a dream come true. I was convinced to buy String Studio dreaming of developing some strange, convincing, new string sound. When I tried the demo I didn't like many of the presets, but it happens with most of the synths. When a synths comes packed with hundreds of patches, you can't expect their quality standard is excellent. But what I found while programming it (and I spent a lot with it) and while trying the other customers patches, is that the dullness of the sound is something that cannot be avoided. The liquid character of plucked isntruments (no matter if it's a guitar, an oud, a bouzuki) is not recreated by this vst. Nonetheless I hope AAS will continue to develop this synth, giving it more sound flexibility, because, I have to say it again, the idea is really GREAT!
When trying the demo edition of this plugin, i was astonished by the reality of sound this plugin can produce. After purchasing the plug and having the opportunity to fully work with it, the disadvantages came out as well.
This plugin is designed to emulate different caliber string instruments from guitars to violins and even pianos, but aside from string instruments, this plugin is capable of producing some very nice pad sounds too (i even found some percussion instruments). (this versatility persuaded me to register this baby) It comes with a library containing 12 sets of instruments, actually 11 since the "tour" set is a selection of various instruments out of the lower sets. When you register, you can download (and share your own designs) more sets on the user-board at Applied Acoustics.
What makes this plugin really beautiful is the excitator. You can define the behavior of your "string" sets with it along with it's behavior through midi velocity rates.
Creating instruments that behave fully natural however are not that easy and sometimes the randomness of some of the options make an instrument unpredictable on moments you desire the instrument to be predictable. This happens amongst others with the violin, the same velocity rate creates a genuine strike the first time, the second time you get a harmonized sound along with it.
Another problem is that the excitator and the damper do not support a full range punch for the body mass and string range you define it's values for. This is clearly noticeable when trying the piano sets. Once you go beyond or above a certain note-range, you don't hear a piano anymore. Actually none of the piano sets sound real at any octave, so if you would like to have a real piano synth, better skip this plug. Every synth consumes a certain amount of CPU resources, this one doesn't save too much either,depending on your CPU and how many cores it have it can consume a reasonable amount of your cpu resources (one instance regular polyphonic performance consumed 26% measured on a 2,8Ghz Intel single core with 533Mhz FSB)
Next to the known instruments you are free to create your own personal fantasy string instruments and this baby can produce quite some extraordinary sounds. Also for the electric guitar department, String Studio does what it takes to get this genuine feel of having real electric guitar power underneath your fingertips. If you need something that is capable of producing a variable range of electric guitars but takes less than 10MB on your harddisk, look no further, this synth does this all particularly well.
This plugin has two configuration panels to design your instrument and set it's ambience. The A-panel comes with a few general in-housed effects like chorus, delay and reverb, next to it also the more instrument related options like vibrato, portamento and even an arpeggiator. The arpeggiator is not usable in polyphonic mode. The tempo of this feature of the plugin can be synchronised to the speed of it's host exactly (even if the host applies odd bpm rates like 150.042). When designing your own sounds using one of the library's instruments as a base you can compare it to the original by using the compare button so you can check wether your changes give the twitch you actually desire. The plugin has an option implemented to export sounds to wave-files for import in a sample library.
The B-panel has as explained above the excitator in the geometry panel which is really important to set the basic type of your string instrument. Though i would have expected the body configuration board to be found under the same geometry panel, but as it seems there was not enough room to place it there. Also the other configuration boards like the damper, string behaviour and termination are there to be found so you can design your instrument behaviour fully from start till finish. The last two panels set the filter and distortion level you can apply to your instrument to give it the final touch.
The plugin has a few downsides but against the advantages i never regret to have registered this plugin, it's worth every penny even if it doesn't create *every* string instrument right. It has many roads to explore and may surprise you even weeks later when doing some new exploration. If you need some great guitars and great pads and the freedom to design exotic string instruments, this thing is a great add-on to your collection just do prepare to read the manual, because you will need it if you want to go for specific string-designs. That you need the manual does not even guarantee you success:The manual is being written from a scientifical perspective, which makes it pretty hard to understand for musicians what the actual blahblah means if they don't have experience with the type of instrument they wish to design. Even if you have experience with the type of instrument i doubt the documentation gives you a clear idea of how you can create a certain design right from start.
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