Review: Spitfire Studio Brass Professional
Spitfire Audio is at it again with the follow up to their Studio line of orchestral Kontakt libraries - Spitfire Studio Brass. Just like Studio Strings the library comes in two flavors, standard and professional, and was recorded at Air Studio One with a dryer tracking to facilitate better mixing control. Spitfire Studio Brass is available for $199, with professional at $399, but they're both on sale until December 27th 2018.
Just for the sake of this review, i'm going to mainly cover the professional edition since its the version I have. If I mention anything about the standard edition i'll be sure to note it, otherwise assume everything is for the professional edition.
Before we dive in, every month i'll be releasing new free content on the Genera Studios store! Head on over to see whats new - it could be samples, presets, or even a small Kontakt library.
Spitfire Studio Brass Professional Specs
This is a massive sample library in terms of file size, sample count, and articulation count. Lets break down the specs of Studio Brass:
230GB Uncompressed .WAV
17 instruments (8 for standard)
13 solo instruments (4 for standard)
260 Articulations (130 for standard)
Recorded by Simon Rhodes
6 Mics and 2 Mic Mixes (Tree Mics for standard)
Here is a full list of the instruments and mic's available for both versions of Spitfire Studio Brass:
Spitfire Studio Brass GUI
Once again, Spitfire is sticking with their standard Kontakt engine for this release. If you're familiar with Spitfire Audio products you'll feel right at home. If you're not familiar with their GUI design, you'll pick it up real quick. Spitfire has a very powerful GUI that they use in almost every Kontakt library of this kind - it provides easy articulation control, mic control, dynamics, reverb, expression, tuning, and more. The consistency among their products makes using all their releases in the same project a very streamlined experience - you only have to learn 1 or 2 GUI's to use all of their products.
Another cool feature about Spitfire Audio GUI's and that is included in Spitfire Studio Brass, is the Ostinatum. I haven't talked about this in the past, and I don't really use it much, but its a very fun and powerful feature thats included in many of Spitfire's product lines. In summary, its like an arpeggiator or sequencer on a synthesizer.
Spitfire Studio Brass Sounds
Spitfire Audio is known for high quality, and Studio brass is no exception. They brought in Grammy award winning Simon Rhodes to help record the samples. Schoeps room mics were used along with a close ribbon mic, such as the Voodoo VD2. The process for recording Studio Brass was the same as Studio Strings, so you can be sure there is as much consistency as possible in the Studio product line. This becomes very important when you want it to sound like your stringed instruments sound like they were recorded in the same space as your brass instruments - you can fake it in the mixing stage, but its much better to have it all just work ahead of time.
Check out this video demo where I explore the sounds of Spitfire Studio Brass Professional:
Overall the recording quality of library is top-notch, as can be expected from a Spitfire library. The sounds are all very organic and natural, with minimal space recorded into the raw sounds to ease the studio mixing process. This is in contrast to something like Forzo by Heavyocity, which focuses more on hybrid sound-designed brass sounds you might drop in a trailer. Not to say that you can't achieve those sounds with Spitfire Studio Brass, but out of the box its a very neutral sound so that you can design the sounds yourself.
Here's a short track I composed using mostly Spitfire Studio Brass along with some Spitfire Studio Strings:
Spitfire Studio Brass is an incredibly large and detailed Kontakt library - perfect for the composer who needs a relatively dry set of brass samples with tons of articulations. In addition to this its available at a pretty great price for the size of library. You can watch my first impressions and review in video form below.