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News - March 2007

 

Prominiy Sounds LPC Reviewed By Brent Hoover (Audiomidi)  29th March 2007.

Introduction!

What is it?

An exhaustive Sample library of the Les Paul Custom for Gigasampler and Kontakt

What does it do?

Emulates the sound of a Les Paul Custom guitar in a its various articulations

Who would use it?

Someone who either can't play or can't afford a high quality Les Paul to get the sound that launched a million records.

How does it sound?

Astounding, very real sound

 

Prominiy Sounds LPC Electric Distortion and Clean Guitar

Extensive, expensive, and sophisticated symphonic libraries are commonplace now, with several brands to choose from. And it’s easy to see why, the cost of a full orchestra is beyond the budget or even the schedule of many productions. But realistic sounding midi-orchestra performances are still not easy to come by, they still require a great amount of skill and knowledge of both a real orchestra and your orchestra library.

But what about an instrument at the opposite end of the spectrum, the guitar. The guitar is probably the most popular and commonplace instrument in America. You can’t swing a cat in my neighborhood without hitting a guitar player or a place to buy a guitar. So why would you want an extensive library of guitar samples, as painstakingly sampled and sophisticated as an orchestra library. Well a few reasons.

Firstly, while there are lots of places to buy guitars, great guitars are hard to find. Because they are made of natural products and involve at least some handmade sections there is a variance that doesn’t really exist in electronic instruments. My Triton sounds just like everybody else’s.

So while the library is expensive, it is still less than any great guitar. And since the LPC comes in both clean and distorted versions you have the same sort of variance with Marshall amps which are notorious for varying in quality, so it also comes with a great amp.

The second reason is that the guitar retains its popularity for two qualities, the first being it is one of the easiest instruments to start learning to play and get some musical satisfaction out of (0 to “Twist n’ Shout” in less than 5 minutes), and secondly it is a very expressive instrument in the hands of a skilled player. Bends, trills, scrapes, sliding notes, hammer-ons and offs, and other playing techniques continue to develop.

And the third reason is that if you listen to guitar-centered music, you know what a guitar sounds like. You aren’t easily fooled (just like we grew up hearing real orchestras at every movie), and guitar libraries up until now have been lifeless simply because they can’t match the variety of sounds that even a mediocre guitar player can get from his instrument. And that is why I think the LPC is a huge leap forward for guitar sample libraries.

First of all it just sounds great. For the first few weeks I just enjoyed the great, realistic, classic Marshall sound that I could get. And then as I wanted more variety of tones I used the clean tones through the various amp simulators where I couldn’t seem to make a mistake in terms of generating cool, unique tones.

But after using it on a few tunes playing some simple chords or parts I started to really dig in and build some tunes around the LPC because I wanted to get a more aggressive sound without running everything through a “bitcrusher” plug-in.

I found that the LPC just went deeper and deeper in terms of control and realism the more I worked with it. I realized that if I wanted realistic sounding performances, I was going to need to dig a lot deeper and actually learn and practice this library like an instrument as it makes extensive use of both real time control (Mod wheel, aftertouch, pedal) and keyswitching. And honestly I am still not there yet, but listen to these demos to hear the realism. But first check out the video demo, the dichotmoy between what you hear and what you see is surreal. Some of the demos are downloadable as MIDI files so you can see how they acheived such a authentic sound

 

Mp3 - Far Away (jazzy Instrumental)

Mp3 - Mr. Mosquito (Heavy Metal Sound)

Mp3 - LPC Rock (straight ahead, funky-ish rock)

An odd thing about the library was that while it had both Giga and Kontakt versions, the Kontakt version seemed severely underdeveloped. First of all the included manual only covered the Gigasampler version, and in terms of instruments, while there were hundreds of different instruments for the different articulations, there was only one “Players Set” with key-switching set up in a way that a lot of things were available to me. Visiting their site for the manual not only yielded the manual (which is massive and extensive), but also a “LPC Super Performance Multi ” with a much more layered and completely built instrument that I could manipulate in real time. And I’m still learning.

The overall quality of the instrument leads me to believe that the Kontakt implementation will continue to grow, while those of you using Gigasampler will benefit right out of the box with fully developed instruments and printed documentation, which covers every articulation, and the way each articulation can be manipulated. For example, when playing in single note configurations, playing legato will cause the LPC to play the “slide” sample in between the notes (much like the Vienna Library), while normal playing will cause the release sample to play, yielding a very intuitive way of using the fluidity of sliding without having to use any special controllers.

To me, LPC is to guitar (at least to the Les Paul Custom) what the Vienna Library was for orchestra or BFD was for drums; the next step in the evolution of both realistic and great sounding instruments, available to people who don’t play that instrument.

The drawback: the price. $599 MSRP is a lot to pay for one library of one type of one instrument. (I mean, a couple of records have been made with Telecasters and Stratocasters too). But when you see the depth and detail of the library (that's 68 GB) you will realize that for the cost of a Les Paul copy, you can get the sound of a one-of-a-kind Les Paul, well recorded and well played and yielding as much realism as you’re willing to invest the time in going for.

In conclusion no other instrument, except for perhaps my Triton, has made me feel such a leap in possibility in terms of getting the sounds I hear in my head into my computer. The LPC is little advertised and overlooked, but if you need a great sounding guitar, or live for a great sounding guitar, pick up the LPC.

 

 

 

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