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  • Timpani Pitch issues


     The timpani  in VSL sounds a bit off pitch.  I am hearing off color undertones and they just don't sit well into the pitch of the rest of the VSL orchestra.  It this just me or has anyone else seems to hear that the pitch is off key. 

  •  Hello,

    I have noticed that as well.


  • Wow! since no one answered (except you)   I thought I was the only one..... Now,  I really listened to them again and perhaps it's the overtones.  Seems that after the hit, which still seems a bit off to me, the tones don't sound right.   I also have BFD timps and they sound more on pitch.  Perhaps it's just the timps. I guess we are the only people who hear this.  This is a difficult  issue because  I know  they must have recorded the timps on pitch....   

    Thanks Sabastian.... 


  • I don't expect timpani to be so precisely pitched, out of my own experience. the more overtones that appear in the recording the more it's going to seem out of tune. I bet there's a lot more in VSL than BFD's samples. it doesn't bother me much. I have a high sensitivity to pitch but I don't have a high expectation of accuracy with the drum. for those it does bug, I would recommend EQing, finding resonant areas to cut. Vienna Suite EQ has presets, resonance menus for hard and medium mallets. 

  • Thanks


  • seems like the VSL timpani that's in Kontakt has less going on as well. I like the one in VSL Percussion, it has a lot of presence and 'cut'. I wonder if I was using it more traditionally, as a tonal function, roots, if it wouldn't bug the hell out of me tho.

  • YES!!   That is what I am doing.. roots .. and to my ear...the pitch is off..


  • For those of you who find the Timp. out of tune, is it the whole sound, the start of the note or the end of the note? What velocity does this happen at?


  • Hi DG,

       I hear the off pitch more towards the end of the note.  If my tune ends with a timpani hit, the overtones are off. It just sounds bad!!  I don't use the VSL timps anymore which is sad because they have some nice articulations .  I have some old samples of timps that do not have these overtones, I also use BFD timps.   Maybe it's just me because not many users have complained. 


  • Any Timp. hit at high velocity will exhibit this tendency for the pitch to change during the after ring. The best thing to do is to use a bit of subtle pitch shift to make the hit slightly sharp, so that the after ring sounds better in tune. or just use a lower velocity.

    FWIW if you listen carefully to a Piano, you will also hear a tad of this going on, although nowhere near as much as you hear on a Timp.


  • I had mostly used Timpani A when I remarked. I have been using Timpani B since. I have relied on it for things that I need pitch for. of course the hits were lower velocity to get the effect I needed, a broken minor chord in a funereal ending.

    I believe the Timpani A is more clangorous.

    In real life, you do expect this kind of thing. some samples are kind of too tempered and tamed and misleading as far as what things are like on stage.
    I think the VSL timpani sound right.