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Archive for November, 2009

Sonic ReFills Ultra-Loaded

If you are looking to upgrade your sound library for Propellerhead Reason, Sonic Reality (http://sonicreality.com/) has a good deal for you. The company is offering a download comprising no less than 38 ReFills for a total of $399.99. According to Sonic Reality, purchasing these ReFills individually would run up a tab of about $700.

Synths, sampled percussion, vintage instruments and grooves abound in this collection. Easily the majority of the patches support the NNXT sampler, and the Dr:rex Loop Player, but you also get ReFills dedicated to the Thor synthesizer, and a few Subtractor and Malström patches. You’ll find plenty of Combinator patches joining the sampler with left-hand bass patterns handled by Malstrom or Subtractor.

I covered the Acoustic Folk collection in a review in EM some time ago; you can read the review here. That collection remains my go-to sound set when I need to infuse a MIDI arrangement with banjos, mandolins, Dobros and an authentic bluegrass flavor.

I have frequently needed to use GM-compliant instruments, and my trusty old Sound Canvas recently kicked the bucket. That may have been a blessing in disguise, as the Sonic Reality Omnisoundz ReFill is a solid improvement and replacement for the uninspired sounds that tend to inhabit the world of General MIDI.

Favorite ReFills in the offer include SR World Percussion, which offers Combinator and NNXT patches, although Sonic Reality missed a bet by not providing Redrum kits. You can, of course, load the provided WAV-file samples into Redrum and create custom kits. I particularly like the meaty-sounding bodhran (an Irish frame drum), the udu and the spicy djembe samples.

SR Rhythm Section offers terrific drum kits for NNXT and Redrum in Combinator form with processing or straight-up, sampler-only versions. You get an assortment of acoustic and electric guitars, as well as basses that include acoustic, several types of electrics and a particularly expressive pair of fretless basses. The guitar folders include a couple of ethnic instruments such as koto and sitar, but for those, you are better off with SR Ethnic Instruments, which also includes tambura, shakuhachi, flamenco guitar and lots more.

Overall, the offer presents a solid, often inspiring set of sounds, and if they don’t all ring your bells, you’ll probably find tons of alternate sounds in the lot that will. Go online and give them a listen.

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The Bus, EM's editorial blog, features posts from all the EM editors on topics related to gear, recording techniques and much more. It's also home to posts from a selected group of guest bloggers.

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