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Selcuk Bor @MaestroRage

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East West Symphonic Choirs

Posted by MaestroRage - December 12th, 2007


East West Symphonic Choirs
Size: 35 gigs
Price: $599
Rating: 4.3/5
Has: Velocity Layering (5), Key Switches (9)
This library has won award after award and it's definitely deserving of each and every title! The power of symphonic choirs comes from it's ability to sing whatever you write inside a wordbuilder program which comes with it. It can sing latin and English pretty well. Though good luck trying to make it sing in German/Spanish/French or any other language which requires certain accents to perform. The library though advanced and complex does not have the accent base to be able to branch out to these areas effectively. It's not IMPOSSIBLE per say, but the amount of work necessary to make it happen, are often enourmous.

The words you can make them sing only affect the choir, there are soloist patches also available however these you cannot make sing. It would nearly double the library size to make them all as flexible. Though I would welcome such an addition it is perfectly understandable why this was not done so. Getting a soloist singer to work with you is infinitely easier then getting a choir.

You have your usual range of the choir of course, Bass, Tenor, Alto, Soprano (no baritone, go home!).

A note to make is the massive size of the library. 35 Gigs is not a small amount and really if you're only looking for vowel articulations (ie, aaaah, eeeee, ooooh, oooo, eeeeh), then there are much cheaper and more useful libraries for you. No library i've seen to date offers the power EWSC offers, but only about 1-2 gigs of it is actually vowel articulated. So watch your back, 35 gigs to use 2 gigs of samples? You've got better use of that space.

Now lets talk briefely about your goals. The choirs is an excellent program, but do you really know how choirs work in regards to equalizing? Sure you've got your range from Bass to Soprano, but you're going to have to consider what exactly you're getting this library for. Working with choirs is not easy, and they are rather thick instruments. By this I mean to hear a choir effectively and properly, especially if they're singing something requires a good deal of knowledge in the mastering/equalizing department. Each range requires different attention. Technically speaking putting a high pass on the Bass singers is going to kill them, putting a Low pass on the Sopranos is going to muffle them, whilst paying no attention whatsoever will force you to heavily reconsider what instruments you'll be using alongside them, or risk losing clarity and substance.

This, like most East West products is not a joke. It's geared towards serious artists and you will need to be patient with yourself to learn it. The wordbuilder is not as user friendly as most people think and there is a wide range of Syntax and commands you will need to know in order to tell the wordbuilder what it is that you really want it to sing. So before you go all uppidy on it's power, step back and really really ask yourself if this is something you're getting simply because "it's so powerful everybody should have it!" or "I'm really going to bust out the choral works!" Having a keyboard connected to the system makes using the Choir Builder infinitely easier as you can hold notes on the keyboard to the length you'd like rather then manually control it via mouse.

One of the pleasent additions in this library is the Key Switches available for the soloist singers. They can sing any vowel articulation in a good range of dynamics and it's evident the effort that was put into making them realistic. Never once let me down in my expectations these patches.

The Velocity Layering on the library is somewhat weak when it comes to choir overall. I don't get the sense of hushed singing, or loud blaring. The Soloists however have a very good dynamic layering of their voices.

Remember, confusions and frustration are both inspiration killers. Don't walk into the trap without bringing an informed decision to the table.

Recap:
Strengths
- Can make any choir sing any word you want
- Very powerful vowel articulations (oh, oo, eh, ah, ee)

Weaknesses
- Complex without proper steps taken to study the wordbuilder
- Quite large
- Solo singers cannot be told what to sing

East West Symphonic Choirs


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