Top Loops & Instruments – March 2014

Acou6tics 1.1 Update From Vir2: What’s New


We spent the weeks since the release of Acou6tics working on the 1.1 update, which adds quite a lot of new features and improvements to the playback engine. Today we want to give you a short overview on what’s new and what has changed.

New Features:

 • Playback: Picking mode:


If you turn the Strum Speed knob all the way to the left, the engine switches into picking mode.This means that chords are no longer automatically voiced as guitar chords and makes it very easy to switch between full chord strumming and picking.


 • Legato: Quick controls added to the main page:


When switching to legato mode the strum settings knobs are replaced by legato settings knobs. This, for example, allows you to quickly change or automate the crossfade and sample start of the legato samples, which can help you to make a legato line fit perfectly and to achieve the best possible realism.


 • Legato: Play Slide:


The new Play Slide keyswitch (G#0 in legato mode) allows you to connect two notes via slide on any string. To play a slide, press the Play Slide forced keyswitch and keep it pressed, play a note, also keep it pressed and play another note. As long as the slide is physically possible on the fretboard, the engine will now play a slide. The faster you play the notes the faster the slide will be.


 • Legato: Engine and sample update:


The legato engine has been rewritten from scratch and most of the Legato Setup page settings have been changed as well. To get a full overview over all the new settings please refer to the updated manual, which covers all the changes. One especially nice feature of the new legato engine should be mentioned here: it’s now possible to mix polyphonic playing and legato lines. You now can, for example, play a chord, keep it pressed, play a trill and switch back to polyphonic playing. To switch to the new mode go to Advanced Setup → Legato Setup and disable Force Monophonic.

Additionally to the engine update, all legato samples have been recut and the best possible start for each sample has been set, which helped to improve the legato playing a lot.


 • Realism: Hit next string noise:


This simulates a rest-stroke, where the finger rests on the next string after plucking the string, which produces an additional attack sound and more punch. This is especially useful for the finger picked instruments, especially when playing Flamenco for example, where this technique is used quite often. You can setup the volume, probability and at which velocity the additional noise is added by going to Advanced Setup → Noise Setup.


 • Realism: Bad notes:


This allows note buzz to be added at the beginning of a note. To setup the volume, probability, and when the buzz occurs (only at a higher velocities, for example), go to Advanced Setup → Noise Setup.


 • Sequencing: “By MIDI Channel” instruments update:


It’s now possible to mix by MIDI channel string positioning with auto detection. If the MIDI Channel is in the range of the strings, e.g. 1 to 6 or 11 to 16 (since the latter is how GuitarPro outputs the channels when exporting MIDIs) the engine places the note exactly on that string. If you set the MIDI Channel out of the range, e.g. 7 to 10, it uses auto positioning.

The way to work with this is the following:
   1.    Set your track MIDI Channel to any channel between 7 to 10 while working on your song,
          that way the “By MIDI Channel” – Instrument behaves just like the normal one.
   2.    When finished with your piece, mark all events in your track and set the MIDI Channel to
          any channel between 7 to 10.
   3.    Set your track MIDI Output to “omni”.
   4.    Now you can go through the track and tweak the string positioning whenever you feel like
          a certain string should be played by simply changing the MIDI channel for those notes
          to the string you want to play them on.

Note: There are two By MIDI Channel modes. One goes from 1 to 6 (MIDI channel 1 = lowest string, MIDI channel 6 = highest string) and one which goes from 6 to 1 (MIDI channel 6 = lowest string, MIDI channel 1 = highest string). The mode can be changed in Advanced Settings → String Setup.

Note: Obviously if using By MIDI Channel instruments, each instruments needs its own Kontakt instance (unless you want to double track, then you can use two instruments in one instance).


 • Other features, improvements & bug fixes

➔ Fix: Various smaller mapping issues fixed accross all instruments
➔ Fix: When rotating the User Chord-knob while playing back a MIDI track in a sequencer or playing live, sometimes a “Array out of range” error was displayed in the status bar of Kontakt
➔ Fix: 12 String loaded up in legato mode
➔ Improvement: The strum noises have been adjusted. Strumming in general should sound quite a bit more realistic and better now
➔ Improvement: All noise volumes Advanced Setup → Noise Setup now are at 75% per default. The difference to 100%, which was the old default value, has been compensated. So there now is more headroom to adjust those settings
➔ Feature: Play On String 6 to Play On String 1 forced keyswitches (starting at C-2) added and included in the default mapping. This is especially useful when using Acou6tics in a sequencer since it allows you to quickly force the engine to play on certain strings via keyswitch


Click here to download the Acou6tics 1.1 update.

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Top Loops & Instruments – February 2014

Acou6tics Development – Behind The Scenes


My Name is Benjamin Stelzer, I am the lead developer of Acou6tics and Electri6ity and I’d like to take you on a behind-the-scenes tour and give you some insight on the development of our newest virtual acoustic guitar library.

Maybe you’ve already heard of Electri6ity, which is our award winning electric guitar library. The reason why I’m also talking about Electri6ity in this blog – just in case you were wondering – is that Acou6tics is meant to follow in the footsteps of this critically acclaimed library, using the same advanced technologies only to re-imagining the acoustic guitar instead of an electric guitar this time.

After releasing Electri6ity, the library quickly became very popular and we’ve got so much feedback from customers on it and even more request to create an acoustic version of this library using the same technology. So when we started to plan Acou6tics we first sat down, took all the feedback, the feature request and read through almost all the discussions on the internet about Electri6ity to get a feeling on what would be the perfect acoustic guitar library. 

Doing this, it quickly became clear on what we had to lay our focus on:

1. Recording & Tone
2. Realism
3. Ease of use
4. Chords & Strumming
5. Flexibility


1. Recording & Tone
recording When we did the first recording tests we spent almost a month, only testing different microphones, micing techniques with various guitars. We tested traditional micing techniques like AB-stereo micing, XY-stereo micing, M/S-stereo micing, but we also tried mics inside the body of the guitars and various types of transducers. We tried different mic characteristics, (omni, cardioid, hyper-cardioid), different micing distances, different rooms and different room treatments – all to get the idea of an ideal acoustic guitar tone for a perfect acoustic guitar library.
You need to know, that this is something completely different compared to recording a live acoustic guitar part for a particular song, because in that case you only need to find a tone which fits this one song. An acoustic guitar library will be used in a lot of different songs and music styles later and ideally it needs to fit all of them all equally!

What we came up with in the end, was much simpler than our initial tests, but tone wise it was the most versatile recording setup, which perfectly captured the natural tone of all the guitars:
We recorded the guitars in Blumlein-stereo using two large condenser mics in a room which was treated in a way that is was almost completely dead, except for some carefully placed diffusers. This technique has a lot of benefits: it’s fully mono compatible, the mics used have figure 8 characteristics, which sounds much more natural than cardioid, the stereo image is excellent and the samples are very dry. Additionally we also recorded the piezo output of all instruments.


2. Realism

The realism of a virtual instruments depends on two factors: First of all, the important articulations, noises and nuances need to be captured in the recording process. And the second factor is an engine which plays back the samples in a way that resembles what a real player would do when playing that instrument. Our experience with Electri6ity, which also was samples extensively, already gave us a pretty good idea of what we had to record and how we had to record it.

But we also wanted to push the playback engine to a new level in terms of realism. So we spent weeks analyzing different playing techniques and nuances of a real guitar and figuring out ways, how to implement them into the engine. In the end we had a completely new sympathetic resonance engine, a physical modeling based approach for the pick position simulation, a completely new strum engine, a new chord detection engine – pretty much everything was completely rewritten from scratch.


Ease Of Use

3. Ease of use

Here the feedback we got on Electri6ity was very helpful. We went through all the critiques and all the improvement requests to figure out how it would be possible, to offer the same flexibility and control the Electri6ity engine offered, but much easier to use. The Acou6tics GUI is very easy to handle and easy to understand, the instruments load pretty fast and the memory usage is very reasonable.




4. Chords & Strumming

We are especially proud of our new chord & strumming engine. The chord library contains up to 25,000 guitar chords per instrument. This means that for almost every chord you are playing on your keyboard, the engine will instantly find the correct guitar voicing for that chord! But not only that, Acou6tics also allows you to learn user chords with only one knob. Whenever you play a certain chord on the keyboard, the guitar voicing you’ve learned for that chord is selected – and you can choose from up to 50 different guitar voicings for each chord.

The new strumming engine has a lot of humanization build and allows you to play realistic strum patterns in no time. We’ve even added transition strums, which are strums that often occur on a real guitar between two chords, since your finger will need time to finger the new chord on the fretboard. That added quite a bit of realism, since those transition strums are so audible and recognizable on a real guitar.



5. Flexibility

Acou6tics can be adjusted to exactly fit your needs! You don’t like the default keyswitch layout? 
No problem. You can simply customize it.

You don’t like the default setup of the instrument? 
No problem. You can customize it.

Almost every aspect of the playback engine can be customized and automated if necessary!

I hope you enjoyed this insight into the development of Acou6tics.

For more information and demos visit the Acou6tics page.

Cheers, Benjamin
Vir2 Development Team

Acou6tics from Vir2 Instruments is Now Available!



Following in the footsteps of Vir2 Instruments’ award-winning Electri6ity electric guitar virtual instrument, Acou6tics applies the same advanced technologies to re-imagine the virtual acoustic guitar. Vir2 has meticulously recorded six different acoustic instruments: a steel-string guitar, twelve-string, nylon string, ukulele, mandolin, and guitalele, and presents them in astonishing detail. It features both plectrum and finger picking, and Blumlein stereo recordings alongside the piezo pickup perspective. Thousands of samples across more than a dozen articulations were recorded for each instrument, including sustains, mutes, releases, legatos, hammer-ons and pull-offs, slides, harmonics, and effects. Acou6tics also features virtual room control with adjustable mic distance and sympathetic resonance.

Acou6tics is powered by the industry-leading Kontakt engine. It is compatible with VST, RTAS (Pro Tools 9 & 10), and AAX (Pro Tools 10 & 11) plug-in formats allowing it to work seamlessly within any major sequencer, in addition to standalone use.














The Acou6tics interface is very easy to navigate. There are four main pages: Playback, Keyswitches, Chords, and Mics & FX.

Ease Of Use





































































This week in loops

Welcome back, readers! I’ve got some pretty legit products to share with you today.

To start us off, the folks here at Big Fish Audio and Dieguis Productions are proud to announce the release of Gravity, a massive collection of Cinematic Electronica, Electro Rock and Dubstep styles. It’s something you won’t want to miss.
We’re also excited to share Modern Roots Reggae XXL with you – a hot new Reggae library from Big Fish Audio and VIP Loops.

Loopmasters has a handful of great new titles, I’ll highlight a few here:

Eddie Amador & Danny Cohiba Presents A Journey Into House: covering an extensive range of four to the floor dance styles from Classic House to Tech, Tribal Deep and beyond

Mediks Drum & Bass Surgery: an adrenaline rush of a sample pack featuring club smashing breaks, heavyweight bass lines and bold synths

Essential EDM Vol.2: 1.1 GB of awesome samples for producers aiming at the dance floor

The rest can be found HERE.

That’s all for today. Peace!

Best Service Releases Cantus By Eduardo Tarilonte!

Now available from Big Fish Audio, Cantus brings you a real Gregorian Monk Ensemble featuring the sounds of the dark Middle Ages.

A perfect tool for composers and sound designers to create ambiences and music for films, documentaries, video games and new age music.

Unparalleled realism…Pure inspiration

Cantus is a unique choir library aimed at easily creating your own ultra-realistic liturgical melodies, without using any phrases. Cantus offers a powerful and innovative word builder which combines 24 words (120 elements including words and their syllables) with 5 true legato vowels (a, e, i, o, u) and a special Mmmh articulation, all at your finger tips in one patch.

Cantus offers:

• 5 different true Gregorian style legatos (a, e, i, o, u)
• Mmmh articulation
• A powerful word builder with 24 words, 3 different articulations (staccato, fast and slow
• Words can be splitted to offer a total of 120 words/syllables
• Words can be combined with true legato playing while the corresponding vowel is
automatically selected
• A collection of 20 Gregorian chants splitted into 400 phrases
• 60 minutes of music
• 20 soundscapes, created from vocal samples.


View product.

Top Loops & Instruments – January 2014

Dieguis Productions Releases “Elevate” Song Kits Update

Elevate – Evolution of a Sample Library
An interview with Phil Symonds of Dieguis Productions


About a month ago, around Christmas time this past year, I was talking with many owners of the Elevate library to check-in with them to see how they were getting along with the library and to basically find out if we had done a good job. Hoping they were going to be overly satisfied, instead what I found out was that the owners of the library were pleased with the product but wanted more control and ease of use. This realization led to many phone calls and Skype sessions to discuss with the owners what they felt would improve the library.

I wanted to know what types of things they wanted in additional to what was already there, what types of customized control were they wanting, how Dieguis Productions could aid them in creating in a more intuitive manner than ever before. So, I sat down with the Dieguis Productions and Big Fish Audio team to put the plans in place that would fulfill the owners needs as well as deliver a few surprises!

Below is a list of the items you guys said you most needed and wanted and what we’re delivering to you!


Elevate OwnersWe want the option of having “Song Kits” (Construction Kits) for quick and easy song creation as well as “Instrument Kits” for overdubs and single instrument song creation.

Dieguis Productions – Done, We’ve gone back to the original recording sessions and created Massive “Song Kits”, with tons of instruments and multiple versions and feels on many instruments.

1) Elevate - Multi-Format - Folder Overview
  (Click to enlarge)

Elevate OwnersWe need to have DAW Sessions of the all “Song Kits” in Multiple DAW formats so we can pull-up a session and get started immediately at creating.

Dieguis Productions – We’re delivering Logic, Pro Tools, Cubase and OMF (for all other DAWs) for ALL Song Kits in the library and we’ve included three DAW session types to choice from, for every song kit.

- Full Multi Drums (All Instruments as well as Multi-Drums)

- Full Multi Drums (Multi-Drums Only)

- Full Stereo (All Instruments and Stereo Drums)

2) Elevate - Multi-Format DAW Sessions 3) Elevate - Full Multi-Drums 4) Elevate - Multi-Drums

5) Elevate - Full -Stereo 6) Elevate - Drum Elements 7) Elevate - Mult-Drums

KLI Format

Elevate OwnersIt would be nice to have “Song Kits” (Construction style Kits) for the entire library, so we can easily match the various song sections together and create super quick mock-ups.

Dieguis Productions – Yep, no worries, we’ve created two versions of “Song Kits” for you!

- “Song Kits” – All instruments grouped individually for maximum creativity and usability. Create depth, texture and intensity quickly and easily. Instruments are mapped one instrument to the octave and song sections placed on corresponding and matching keyboard keys. No more wondering which song section goes with which song section.

- “Song Kits Masters” – All Instruments grouped as one instrument with matching drums (or multiple drum parts) for ultra-quick mock-ups and song creation. Independent control of Melodic and Rhythmic Instruments means you can mix n match various drum grooves over the melodic instruments super easily.

2) Elevate - Song Kits Masters  1) Elevate - Song Kits

Elevate OwnersWe love the performances included in the library but it would be cool to be able to re-arrange and customize the performances even more.
Dieguis Productions – Hmmm, we like that idea too we say with a sinister laugh.
We went into the Dieguis Productions/Big Fish Audio lab and have created an update to the KLI Series interface that will give you the ability to customize and tweak the included content even more than previously possible. We introduce to you “Phrase Play” (trumpeted fanfare and red carpets pulled out)

There are four controls on “Phrase Play”.

3) Elevate - Phrase Play - Phrase Play Overview

“Mono” – Turned Off (Default) multiple notes within the instrument group are able to be sounded simultaneously. Turned On, only one note is able to be sounded at a time.

4) Elevate - Phrase Play - Mono

“Legato” – Turned Off (Default) the loop performance will be triggered and played from the start of the loop. Turned On, when switching to a new loop, in a legato playing manner, the new loop will pick-up where the previous loops playing position was. This update allows for tremendous creative control in real-time performance of parts. No longer be stuck to the chord changes or melodies of a performed loop. Now you can re-arrange and truly perform, in real-time, a new performance.

5) Elevate - Phrase Play - Legato

“X-Fade” – Controls the amount of cross- fade when switching between two notes. Customize it for your individual playing style and needs.

6) Elevate - Phrase Play - X-Fade

” Mod-Start” – When turned on, the Mod-Wheel will control where the loop will start from. Down all the way, the loop will start from the beginning. When moved up, the loop will start and be triggered further into the loops performance.

7) Elevate - Phrase Play - Mod Start
Elevate OwnersIs that all you got?

Dieguis Productions – Nope, We got some more for you!

We’ve added a couple extra features that will give you even more control and aid in your ability to create intuitively. Color coding of the KLI Interface and the ability to control and change the key of the song on the keyboard. You can still change the key with the tuning knobs if you prefer and now your able to adjust the key of the song on the keyboard as well.
Color Coded Interface and Key Change

- Green – Represents a “Group” of instruments. Used exclusively on “Song Kit Masters”

- Blue – Represents “Individual Instruments” group

- Red – Represents the range the song can be transposed

- Yellow – Represents the “Root Key” (Original key the song was recorded in)

- Cyan – Represents the “New Key” or transposed key. Note that the yellow (root key) will continue to stay lit in order to show the root key.

8)  Elevate - Colors and Key Change

Ok, so now for the best news of all ……….
If you’re a current owner of the Elevate library than all of these updates are completely free for you!!!
Simply contact Big Fish Audio customer service ( and request the new song kits.

It is Dieguis Productions’ plan and goal moving forward to deliver future libraries with all of these updates and improvements. Over time, we are also planning on updating previously released Dieguis Productions libraries as well so keep your eyes open for the fun! As always, thanks for supporting Dieguis Productions/Big Fish Audio, we strive to create libraries that you will love using and aid you in creating at your highest potential.
Do you like these changes, updates and improvements?

Let us know and tell us what you think, we’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions.

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