So, with Iconica being on sale I have to ask

Does anyone here have a suggestion for another orchestral library that I should look at instead? I’ve been on-and-off about getting an orchestral library since they tend to be pricey, and I don’t want to pay for one that I end up not liking. Right now, I have all the NI stuff, plus the Kirk Hunter Diamond set. It is ok, but I don’t really love any of it.

I’m auditioning Iconica right now and I’m on the fence about it. It’s good, better than NI overall, but I’m not over the moon about it. Anything else in the same rough price range that I ought to check out before pulling the trigger (or passing)?

You can check up East West Hollywood Orchestra, Vienna Symphonic Library or Spitfire Audio BBC Symphony Orchestra plus myriads of libraries for Kontakt player.

I am also undecided about Iconica. I think its the only real library specifically made for Cubase and HALion pipeline, its light on system and perfect for fast sketching. Not bad at all but yeah not that inspiring for serious work.

With East West… How is their software these days? I used them back in the day right around when they decided to switch from Kontakt to Play and man, that was a disaster. Play was just utter garbage. I ended up having to just put them all aside.

So how’s their new Opus software do? In particular can it do a proper offline bounce? Play couldn’t, it’d drop tails and East West claimed that it was just impossible, and realtime was the only way. Also how is it CPU wise? Again with Play I found that it seemed to be real hungry, compared to Kontakt.

I don’t have this library, and I’m a bit curious about these statements. Is this about the sound, like the playing or recording technique, or is this down to not fully “trusting” the library, since there’s not as much word of mouth on it compared to other ones?

So I can’t speak for 3DC but having tried both Iconica and Hollywood Orchestra (they also had a trial) and settling on Hollywood Orchestra:

Both are extremely good. Very well-done recordings in both cases. The advantages I saw in Iconica:

-More ambiance in the space they were recorded. Put in the surround mics and you have some excellent reverb right there.
-Lighter weight on the system.
-More consistent sound from all the instruments I tried, like the dynamic levels smoothly transitioned between each other and it all sounded very “correct” with little work.
-Easier control over what you use for things like dynamics control. You can just pick what causes dynamic changes in the user interface so if a sustain normally uses the mod wheel for volume, you can change it to not velocity if you have a piece that uses that.
-Better ensemble setups.

The advantages of Hollywood Orchestra:

-Less live space, meaning you can shape the sound more to your liking. The stage they recorded it on is pretty dry, mostly just some ERs even in the wide mics, meaning it’ll slide in to other reverbs easier.
-More dynamic layers for a number of instruments.
-Better instrument selection, in particular it has solo strings but also small sections and such.

The final thing that pushed it over the top for me was the price. At the time both were on sale but Iconica was $500 for the whole deal, or $400 for just sections and players. Hollywood Orchestra was $340 for the whole package. Given that this is all a hobby for me and a silly expense, I decided to save the money.

If they were both the same price? I still probably would go for HO because of the better instrument selection and I like that it can be put in other spaces better. However it would be hard, and I might have gone for Iconica instead.

I’d love to have both, just not worth it for me.

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Oh and I should add I have so far not and any real issues with Opus. I had great misgivings based on my experience with Play, but it seems to be stable and seems to know how to properly offline bounce audio.