Amateur Orchestra
Amateur Orchestra

Amateur Orchestra

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Sometimes when I record an acoustic guitar or piano with a singer songwriter and want to add orchestral elements to it, I want to feel like it’s recorded in the same environment by the same kind of player. I might want it to sound like someone pulling an old instrument out of the attic and blowing a few notes for a unique texture, or picking up an instrument for the first time and just seeing what happens. The attacks are inconsistent, the tuning isn’t perfect and the air comes and goes.

That’s what Amateur Orchestra is for. The DIY orchestral sound at your fingertips.

There is a really wide range of tones here and a lot of niche instruments and beginner instruments were sampled for more options. From plastic brass to contrabassoon to someone trying a cello bow for the first time to someone who hadn’t picked up a trumpet in 20 years. None of these are perfect recreations of any instrument. Just a really big collection of colors to choose from that get you to a place where it’s clearly not your big city philharmonic.

How it works:

Choose from one of four libraries; percussion, brass, strings and woodwinds. From there, use the arrows or the dropdown menu to browse sounds and use the upper menu to browse character presets to get you started and tweak from there.

Use the ‘loose’ control to randomly delay the start time of samples up to 250 ms. Use the ‘detune’ control to randomly detune notes up to .3 semitones. The pitch bend wheel is set for .3 semitones up or down so you can correct for this in real time on long notes if you want the feeling of someone trying to ‘find’ a note.

Other controls are for attack, decay, release, filter, tape sat, and room verb.


Brass - Cimbasso Long, Cimbasso Short, Euphonium Long, Euphonium Med, Euphonium Short, Flugelhorn Long, Flugelhorn Short, French Horn Long, French Horn Short, Kids Trombone, Plastic Bugle, Plastic Horn Long, Plastic Horn Short, Plastic Trombone Long, Plastic Trombone Short, Plastic Trumpet H Mute, Plastic Trumpet Long, Plastic Trumpet Short, Plastic Trumpet S Mute, Trombone H Mute Long, Trombone H Mute Short, Trombone Long, Trombone Short, Trumpet Long, Trumpet Mouthpiece Buzz, Trumpet Short, Tuba Long, Tuba Short

Percussion - Marimba, Timpani, Triangle, Tubular Bells, Vibraphone, Vibraphone Short

Strings - Cello Bridge Bow 1, Cello Bridge Bow 2, Cello Chop, Cello Fingerboard Bow 1, Cello Fingerboard Bow 2, Cello Long 1, Cello Long 2, Cello Long Bow No Vib, Cello Mini Bow, Cello Pluck, Cello Ricochet, Cello Snap, Cello Trem, Viola Bridge Bow 1, Viola Bridge Bow 2, Viola Chop, Viola Fingerboard Bow 1, Viola Fingerboard Bow 2, Viola Long 1, Viola Long 2, Violin Beginner Bow, Violin Mini Bow, Violin Pluck 1, Violin Pluck 2, Violin Snap, Violin Trem

Woodwinds - Alto Flute Long, Alto Flute Overblow, Alto Flute Short, Bass Clarinet Honk, Bass Clarinet Long, Bass Clarinet Short, Bass Clarinet Swell, Bass Flute Long, Bass Flute Overblow, Bass Flute Short, Basset Horn Air Notes, Basset Horn Airy Short, Basset Horn Honk, Basset Horn Long, Basset Horn Short, Basset Horn Swell, Bassoon Long, Bassoon Short, Bb Clarinet Air Long, Bb Clarinet Air Short, Bb Clarinet Honk, Bb Clarinet Long, Bb Clarinet Short, Bb Clarinet Swell, Concert Flute Long, Concert Flute Overblow, Concert Flute Short, Contrabassoon Honk, Contrabassoon Long, Contrabassoon Short, Eb Clarinet Airy Long, Eb Clarinet Long, Eb Clarinet Short, Oboe Long 1, Oboe Long 2, Oboe Short, Piccolo Long, Piccolo Overblow, Piccolo Short.

What you need;

  • A full version of Kontakt 6.8 or above (not Kontakt Player). 
  • 4.19 gb on your drive