Abbey Road Orchestra Professional 1st Violins - Sets A New Standard


Too Many Notes
Apr 26, 2012
I realize that maybe two or three members here are interested in orchestral string libraries. But you never know. So I'm sharing this.

Spitfire Audio came out with a new violin library that was sampled at Abbey Road Studio - which, BTW, will soon no longer be doing orchestral sessions. As you might expect from Spitfire, the sound quality is wonderful, and the mic positions capture a very realistic and lovely sound.

But the magic with this library is that in addition to sonic attention to detail, it's programmed to respond to performance and touch more realistically than anything else I've tried - and I've got and used them all - with a lot less need to use controllers other than the keyboard, and less need for external articulation switching.

What this translates to is that you can play it more expressively. So it's pretty effing nice to compose with.

If the rest of the library is this expressive, it's going to be a very expensive adventure - that's the only drawback. Because for a violins-only library, it's pricy at $449. Worth it if you compose with strings a lot.

Interesting to follow the technological growing points of digitization of real life.

So cool for something that gives you more expression directly from keys. Their clips are pretty impressive and hard to distinguish from the real deal. Would be interesting to see what logic/algorithms they're using to translate more directly translate keys to strings and determine which samples to use with less controller use & articulation switching.

As you say not cheap, but the idea of buying a string quartet for something like 3 x $449 isn't bad.
As you say not cheap, but the idea of buying a string quartet for something like 3 x $449 isn't bad.
It's only bad if you already have more than 40 of their other libraries, which, yes, I have.

I'm a complete sucker for every damn thing they come out with. It's an illness called Sample Library Syndrome.

I know because I was just nominated its poster boy. ;)
Just an update on this Abbey Road Orchestra 1st violins Pro thingy...I'll start with the important thing:

1. I wrote a piece of music with it. Sounded realistic, but the piece sucked.

2. There was a 48 hour sale at Spitfire. Based on the quality of nuance of the 1st Violins Professional, I bought the Abbey Road Orchestra Low Percussion. Holy Sh!t, the sampling is unbelievable. Sounds like big drums in a real studio.

3. I'll now sit down and write another bad piece of music no doubt, only this one will have great low percussion sounds.

4. None of it will matter at all, because I've run out of talent. The well is dry.

"You never had any talent in the first place."

"Thanks a bunch."
I knew this 1st Violins library would cost me more money. Even with the 48 hour sale, I blew more money on the low percussion library, and honest-to-goodness would have bought the high percussion and metals libraries if they were on sale, too, but buyers were limited to one library at the discounted price.

Thank you for small favors, O gods of sample libraries! There will be an end of year sale. I'll get the rest of them soon enough.

Because I'm that guy who waits for sale unless I have a project that will pay the freight on new gear.

"Did you have a project for the DGT?"

"Nah. Just a jones for it."

"How about your 4x10 Mesa cab a few months back?"

"That would be a predictable 'not really'. But one will come along."

"You'd be a lot better off if you cut that debit card in half."

"I'd be better off if I cut my dick in half, too, but it's too late. I've already reproduced and caused myself other trouble."
I'll now sit down and write another bad piece of music no doubt, only this one will have great low percussion sounds.
"Commenting on bad music with great low percussion sounds got guys like DTR kicked off the forum."

"Not quite, he said that a highly percussive genre wasn't music at all."

"Oh, that's different then. So as long as it's bad music then it's OK."

"Maybe better then to throw out the bad music part and retain the lovely sampled great low percussion."

"Fine, just don't say that your percussion is lower or bigger than mine."