Spitfire Studio Brass Review and Demo

Today we’ll review Spitfire Audio’s incredible new Studio Brass Pro package. This brass collection is one of the most lifelike, usable brass vsts I’ve used. You can clearly hear how all the articulations of a wide range of brass instruments, played through a range of microphones, can sound so present.

Spitfire Studio Brass Playability

But what I love about this VST is not just how good it sounds – it’s how playable it is. Once you start using it, you’ll see how the instruments are setup in a way to be played naturally. If you just use your ears, they’ll tell you which ranges to play them in, which articulation would sound best, and how to control their dynamics. It’s a very organic process, and helps you feel really connected to the process of writing brass.

What’s Included

Spitfire Studio Brass Pro is loaded full of instruments and articulations that can take you anywhere from mellow, moving slow lines to powerful...

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Fab Filter Pro-Q 3 Review & Tips

I’ve tried a lot of EQs in my life. Each one promising some incredible vintage model the promised to make my life better. To be honest, none of them really have done much for me – until the Fab Filter Pro-Q 3.

And that’s not hype (you can watch my Fab Filter Pro-Q 3 review and see I’m not lying – I’ve got a terrible poker face).

You see, the Pro-Q 3 doesn’t emulate any legendary device, it doesn’t do saturation, it doesn’t have any magic fairy dust. It just lets you make smart, well-informed mixing decisions.

Unlike other plugins, it presents you with tons of extra information that allows you to be a better mixer. And when you use EQ better, you don’t need any fairy dust.

It’s also loaded with amazing features like mid-side processing, dynamic EQ, and a spiffy visualizer. I did a whole post here on how powerful mixing with the Pro-Q 3 can be. Plus there’s a ton of curve shapes, from filters to shelves....

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Spitfire Audio Eric Whitacre Choir Review

Today I’m gonna review Spitfire Audio’s new choir the Eric Whitacre choir.  This is a beautiful, lush choral standalone VST. It doesn’t require Kontakt. 

Note: this review is based on a free review copy of the plugin, I was not compensated otherwise.

Here is a video review of the Choir so you can actually hear it in action:

The Eric Whitacre Choir Sound

The Eric Whitacre Choir sounds great for so many different types of choir sounds – especially these lush arrangements. Sounds that sort of move effortlessly.

But there are also shortcomings to it though which we’ll get into in a second.

The Eric Whitacre Choir Interface

The interface is very easy to understand. This is a standalone VST, like I said, so it’s not a familiar Kontakt player(for better and for worse).

I think it works pretty well it’s not too different from the Kontakt VSTs that Spitfire makes. And it’s very similar to Spitfire’s free line of Labs...

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Best Mouse for Recording Music

I needed to find the best mouse for recording, because, (and I don’t know about you), but after a long session, my hand starts to cramp up. So I’d been looking for a more ergonomic mouse, but also one that would speed up my workflow. 

After I lot of research, I settled on the Logitech G602 as the best mouse for recording in Reason.

The Best Mouse Hotkeys for Recording in Reason

The Logitech G602 makes using Reason so much faster. It’s got 11 buttons that are super easy to program, a comfortable ergonomic grip, and a hassle free wireless design. With Reason, this works great because I’ve mapped 3 of the buttons to each of the major screens (mixer, rack, and sequencer). I’ve mapped three more buttons to the razor tool, the selection tools, and the mute tool in the sequencer. Another button quickly flips around the rack.And two more buttons… well I’m still trying to figure out the best use for them. Maybe zoom? How would...

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Warm Audio Tone Beast TB12 Review and Demos

The bottom line of this Warm Audio Tone Beast (affiliate link) Review? The TB12 is an amazing value, with great sounding, vintage tone.  Retailing for around $599, it’s got good build quality, a ton of flexibility, and is very easy to use.

For those visual learners, here’s a video review of the TB12 Tone Beast.

To begin this Warm Audio Tone Beast review, the TB12 features, from left to right, the input control section, the tone control, and finally its output section.

The input control is incredible, and one of my favorite features that Warm Audio added. It can take an xlr mic (with or without phantom power), a line level instrument, or an hi-z instrument like a guitar. You can pad down the instruments if they’re too loud (which allows you to use more of the TB12’s tone shapping), and add a decent sounding high pass filter.

Unleash the Tone Beast

From there, the real power of the Tone Beast comes out. With two...

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Best Sites for Free Samples & Free Loops

The only thing better than good samples are good free samples or free loops. Don’t worry. I’ve done the digging for you to find the best sites for free samples & free loops.

Since rap exploded on to the music scene, the use of loops and samples has become ubiquitous in all genres.

Whether we’re talking about pop music, rock, hip hop, or EDM, there is always a place for samples .

For example, in rock recordings, producers often layer the sound of real drums with sampled kicks and snares. Electronic music has relied on vocal samples and percussion loops since nearly the beginning.

Of course, samples and loops can be expensive. And that’s not to say that they’re not worth it. I’ve pick up some absolutely amazing sample packs over the years that were worth every penny.

But sometimes money is tight. Or maybe you don’t feel like you need an entire sample pack, just a sound or two.

Whether you’re looking for a song starter, a banging...

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Eastwood Classic 4 Bass Review - A Short Scale Semi-Hollow Body Dream?

Looking for a new bass?

I’m not going to bury the lede in my Eastwood Classic 4 bass review: it’s a very good, unique bass for its price ($549), but probably won’t be your main bass. In short, there are so many things to like about Eastwood Guitar’s Classic IV bass, from its great semi-hollow body look to its round, thumping tone. But there are also some issues with build quality and, for me personally, playability.

First a little background on me: I’ve played bass for about 20 years, and owned an Epiphone, a Gibson, and a couple of Fenders. My current main bass for gigging is an American-made Fender Hot-Rodded P-Bass with EMG Active electronics. It’s a discontinued model, but I absolutely love it.

However, I was looking to add something a little different to my collection, so I started exploring semi-hollow body basses. I’ve owned my Classic 4 at least a year, so I feel comfortable giving a detailed Eastwood Classic 4 bass...

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Best Gifts for Musicians on All Budgets

Having played music for 20+ years, I can say that these are the best gifts for musicians, hands down.

These are tools I use every day to make hundreds of dollars licensing my music.

Most of these gifts are biased towards guitar players, but there’s plenty of affordable gifts for all types of musicians.

So whether you’re shopping for a birthday gift for a musician, a Christmas present for musicians, Hanukkah, or just a thank you, check out these presents. They’re arranged by budget. Under $20, under $100, and $100+. But there’s something for all budgets.

These are also great birthday gifts for musicians, because most musicians neglect to take care of their gear as much as they should.

While some of them may not seem “sexy,” a lot of these gifts are the sort of thing gift a musician would never buy for themselves. They’re high quality and I’ve personally used most of them or have friends that would swear by them. So the musician in your...

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Best Books for Musicians & Music Books

As a guitar player, songwriter, and musician, I’ve learned so much from books form musicians. Music books have taught me how to play my instruments better, how to write and arrange songs, how to mix, and have inspired me to get better at my craft.

These four books are going to be well received by whoever you give them to.

I’d divide the best books for musicians into two categories: books that tell great stories about musicians, and those that teach musicians how to be better.

Both types of books for musicians are important to read, not only because it’s important to invest in yourself, but also because they can provide a lot of extra knowledge and inspiration!

Over my 20+ years of playing music, I’ve read a lot of each. Below are some of my favorite. These books make great Christmas gifts for musicians and also make great birthday presents.

Best Book for Musicians: The Beatles – the Complete Score

The Beatles were simply the best songwriters of the 20th...

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Recommended Recording Equipment

Since some of you have asked, here is the gear I use, I’ve found everything on here to work well for me and would recommend all of it. After a lot of trial and error and money wasted on gear that I didn’t use, I’ve settled on the following selection of music equipment.

Note that some of these may contain affiliate links. But that doesn’t influence my decision to use these.

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