Yamaha VL70-m,and I find them quite expressive and playable with my Jazz real book eb pdf EWI 4000s. Alas,I always failed at finding a decent implementation of a virtual sax. I have always been disappointed by the lack of playability and the inability of achieving the many timbre variations that only a real sax can offer. These price tags make Samplemodeling products more expensive than libraries that offer hundreds instruments for a fraction of a dollar each,but this comparison is misleading,because none of the instruments in these libraries can really compete with Samplemodeling.
The company has been on the market for a while and gained a very high reputation among musicians,especially EWI players. The first line of their products is based on the Native Instruments’ Kontakt platform,and in fact they include the free Kontakt Player for users who don’t own the complete product. SWAM instruments don’t require you to install the Kontakt player. USB port on your computer AND you don’t feel you are treated as a potential pirate.
Instead,you get two license keys,which allow you to install their software on two different computers. If you buy a third computer you can have one key deactivated and reactivated on the new hardware. As is common with most vendors,a valid license gives you the ability to download future minor releases of the same product,without having to pay for a yearly subscription. My review is based on version 2. 4,but I learned that version 2. Without any of these MIDI controllers,SWAM instruments don’t sound at all!
I haven’t used by second serial key yet,therefore I don’t know how it works on a Windows system,but I don’t expect any trouble. Quite opportunely,Samplemodeling provides three configurations to start with:for keyboard players with an expression pedal,for keyboard players with breath controller,and for wind controller players. The documentation is short,clear and concise,and just takes a few minutes. Once I grasped the fundamental concepts,it took less than one hour to tweak the many available parameters until I got the sound and the responsiveness I expected. A rectangular area in the center of the main window shows a subset of the messages arriving from the MIDI controller,i. If what you hear isn’t what you had in mind,you should keep an eye on these parameters to understand how the software is analyzing your playing style. In the bottom half of the main window you see more advanced controls that directly affect the resulting sound.
Each variations results in a slightly different timbre,even though the differences aren’t always noticeable,at least to my ears. After some tests,I found myself focusing on two or three different variations for each sax model. I can’t really claim I could grasp the meaning of each of them. In some cases I managed to have interesting sound variations by moving a slider,in others I found no audible difference,probably because some controls must be adjusted in groups rather than individually. For example,I found out that lowering the default value of the Dyn. Some parameters are meant to be controlled dynamically by sending CC messages from your MIDI controls.