Miroslav Philharmonik vs. HALion Symphonic Orchestra

As some may have seen, there is currently a deal with IK Multimedia, where by the Miroslav Philharmonik is very reasonably priced. It also seems quite popular.

Myself, I’m not much of an IK fan, so I’m wondering about opinions between that one and HALion Symphonic Orchestra.

The price difference is only $30.00, so not enough to sway my decision either way.

I have just read here on these forums that the 32 bit version can & does work in Cubase 7 - 64 bit versions, but I would tend to think that HALion SO would meld even better, being ‘in house’ so to speak during the install process at 64-Bit already.

Any thoughts and opinions?

[I should mention that I do have Garritan 4 PO.]

I bought the HSO VST Instrument Set a few years ago when purchasing C6. The orchestral sounds overall were ok but I didn’t have any experience using other similar VSTs. I eventually sold it early this year due to lack of use.

But having seen the deal IK are making, I would suggest purchasing that as Steinberg have made no indication that they are purusing further development with the instrument set. Hell I’ll probably purchase Miroslav Philharmonik with such a deal like that!


I’d go HSO, any day of the week before dealing with a bridged product that is pretty much similar in capability. Neither product is a full featured set of orchestra articulations. Both have a “particular” sound. Both work reasonably well in the pop/modern usage. Marginally, for simplified symphonic scoring.

I’ve been using the IK MP for several years. Now, since upgrading to CB7 64 the IK MP crashes all the time. So I switched to Halion SO. In my opinion though the MP sounds are much better than those in HSO. But the constant connection issues between MP and CB7 make it difficult to use. Too bad.

I bought Miroslav on a deal a few months ago and really like the sounds, plus the range of articulations you get. I think it’s amazing value for money at this price. I’ve also got HSO and often use the two together (the trumpets for example blend well). Philharmonik also goes well with GPO 4.

There is a problem with it being 32 bit (fine in C6.5, not so good in C7), but the chances are very high that IK will be releasing a 64 bit version of SampleTank some time this year, and that this will be able to play the Miroslav Library. In the meantime, I’ve found Miroslav to be more stable used in the SampleTank player - different interface but the same controls.

64 bit Sample Tank… nice to know. I will be trying it as soon as it come out. Thanks.

i use sampletank on every production. bridging to 64 bit is not ideal, but it works. in Cubase 7, with all separate outputs activated. no problems. and with deals from esoundz on libraries going so cheap, you could get sampletank xl and loads of other great stuff at a fraction of what I paid! then again, it has paid for itself by now… :slight_smile: ed

Do you use jBridge or C7’s VST bridge with SampleTank? I’ve been using jBridge since C6 but have read in other threads that the bridge in C7 is now better.

I’ve been using jbridge. mainly because I read that Cubase bridge has a smallish memory allocation (2 or 4gb?) for ALL plugins whereas jbridge apparently allows each plugin to use up to 4gb. this matters when using stuff like stylus rmx. having said that, bfd2 and kontakt are now 64 bit so it might be less of an issue. I was using jbridge for my uad plugins but found the Cubase bridge to be better (more stable) for them. ed

Thanks, that’s useful to know. I’m still hoping for a 64-bit SampleTank some time this year but the months are starting to run out.

i have HSO, sound ok, halion 4 has really
great orchestra sound, not the best but ok.
I was trying out the demo of Miroslav Philharmonik
i did expected huge sound, to be honerstly
i was so dissapointed, even my old Roland JV880
with the Orchestra sound card sound much better.
I even did check out the many demos of Miroslav
Philharmonik, it just dosen’t sound realistic enough!.
If you want something that really blows your
mind, that beats anything, buy East West
Symphonic Orchestra gold version, i am sorry
to say that it is expensive (so is Halion).

East West Symphonic Orchestra gold cost
aprox. the same as Halion, but then you will
get exstreme exstreme huuuuuuuuge sound like
never heard before.
I did listen to the demos by East
West product, i am chock, its so amazing.
I dream about having East west product, just
dont have the money now, but in two months
i will buy East West Hollywood string gold and
East West Goliath.

There’s allso Vienna virtual orchestra instrument
( or what ever its called), but their plugins
are very expensive, because their plugins are the

Same goes for Halion 5, i have had many trial demos of virtual
sampler and was dissapointet, only Halion 4-5 is
for me the best, thats why i saved up money for
Halion, now i have it plus Omnisphere ( wauv!).

I dont hope i made anybody angry in this forum when i was
saying that Miroslav was not realistic enough,
but this is because i saw a lot of videos of East
West product , like Hollywood string, etc,
i just dont see any other virtual instrument that
can actually produce this kind of exstreme quality,
for an virtual instrument.
Hardware synth/ sampler just can’t produce realistic sound
like East West or Vienna for that matter.

Vienna virtual orchestra has a piano plugin.
this plugin has sampled sound of a real piano.
the piano was sampled with 24 /96khz ,
each key has over 1200 audio sample.
all 88 keys were recorded. ( yes 1200 audio sample!)
thats equal to thousand of audio sample for
one recorded piano, i am shure this piano
sounds great.

East West use similar technic for their product.

East West link:


Vienna symphonic library:


I have only the le version of miroslav for sampletank. it sounds nice. I think people like it because it was one of the first serious attempts at recreating orchestra. the sounds that come with kontakt 5 are more realistic. then again, the sampletank ones load faster and use less ram. and sound nicer if doing pad type work as opposed to accurate orchestral mock ups. ed

Your right, miroslav doesn’t sound that bad,
but considering
the fact, Miroslav Symphonic Orch
the big version equal same price as East West
gold version, but as said before, there is a
huge difference in quality.
I really dont hate Miroslav, infactc i was considerering
to buy Miroslav long time ago, then i saw East West, which
for me was a better choice.
Anyone should know, if they are considerering
buying East West or Vienna plugins,
the computer requiment is really high,
especially East West eats huge amount of ram.
You will need a relative fast Mac or PC, before you
can enjoy East West or Vienna.
East West plugin is for, if you need that hollywood
movie score sound.
Vienna plugins is more suited for allmost
realistic symphonic orchestra sound with a
fatefull reproduction of a allmost real orchestra sound,
though, a real orchestra can never be beaten.
As i recall it, East West was the first company, that
actually began creating audio sampled library
of orchestra sound , later on virtual instrument.
I could be wrong!.
Further more Doug Rogers ( founder of EastWest ) was involving in creating
the famous Nemsys Gigasampler plugin, which was the one
of the first ever created sampler plugin using
streaming technology for audio sample playback.
East West allso owns the famous studio
" East West studio".

I do remember having Gigasampler Le on my
Windows ME was fantastic back in 2003, what a sound, the
only thing was, Gigasampler was crashing alot.
Nobody uses Gigasampler anymore!.

Strange, Steinberg forum, says i am a new member of
this forum, i did made my acount in 2009!.
Maybe because i changed my passw ?!.
Anyway doesen’t matter.

I would take HSO and day of the week over Miroslav Philharmonik…although I think both are so so libraries anyway.

I feel that different beasts are being compared. each one has its place. - I mean you just cant compare miroslav or HSO or GPO to ewql or albion or project sam or kirk hunter or vsl, it just not right!

whereas miroslav and HSO, well again different beast. I find HSO good for somethings and miroslav quite good for tother stuff, usually both mixed together to do mock ups. saying that - if you use halion 5 as HSO driver. then you can flip the whole thing upside down and backwards, meaning you have more flexibility than mirolslav! ps you will still need miroslav for some stuff- horns etc.
there are times I might use albion for a solo senction and the rest gpo/miroslav.

GPO is also quite good for the price - although there are some background noise ( same with miroslav) but noises could add something intersting and add suspense - depending what you want. The end game is how you use all these.

An extremely important aspect of sample use is realistic simulations of actual playing… Key to this is the VST expression functionality of HSO. Not sure how well IK supports this, if at all?

IK instruments are primitive when it comes to midi control… far as I know, based on using sampletank, no expression parameters built in. a typical sampletank library might total about 2GB or less compared to the 50GB or so of the specialised libraries… Ed

Not at all.
(and I am a real IK fanboi)

Still waiting for 64 bit ST3.

But the current ST does run fine with C7.

hi curteye. I guess i’m an IK fanboy too… sampletank, amplitube, csr etc. do you use st with jbridge? that’s how I use it. did u get it working with Cubase 64 built in bridge? thanks, ed