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  • Relative Volume for Woodwinds Question

    I own Woodwinds I extended. Included with Woodwinds I are each instrument a3. Would there be any difference in relative volume and sound quality of flute 1 and flute 2 playing a unison note, compared to the Flutes a3 playing the same note at the same dynamics?

    A fairly typical orchestration requires woods in pairs, 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets and 2 basoons. With VSL Woodwinds I the solo line and the line for 2 instruments moving as a pair can be covered. And when the pair are playing a unison note, the a3 patch can be used. However if flute 1 and flute 2 have independent lines, I suppose it would be best to have both VSL instruments. I also guess that when they play a unison note using VI Pro with humanization, a very realistic a2 sound would be created. The same suppositions, reasoning and questions also apply to the oboe, clarinet and bassoon.

    I am thinking of buying Woodwinds II extended, plus the Bb Clarinet 2 and Bassoon 2. I wanted Woodwinds II anyway, because it includes the English Horn, Bass Clarinet and Contrabassoon. But I wanted to hear from other users before commiting to the expense. Any advice?

  • Paul, you can definitely use the two solo flutes for a2 unison that sounds exactly right.  The 3 flute ensemble is not so good for that because it not only sounds different and larger but also does not have as much sample detail as the 2 solo flutes. I don't think it is a good substitute for 2 flutes if you want a strictly realistic orchestration.  Also, the two different solo flutes have a different playing character which can be very nice to give one the expressive choice on a solo. 

    Though the 3 player ensembles throughout the woodwinds have a very rich sound, so can be used especially for soli scoring along with the solo instruments.  I really like the sound of the 3 bassoon ensemble for example and have been using it instead of solo bassoon sometimes.  I think for strictly orchestral use the 3 player ensembles  are good for either soli on unison lines, or making a huge Richard Strauss/Mahler style woodwind section especially if you combine them with the solo instruments and pitch shifting.      

  • Thanks William. Your advice is appreciated.

    I love your music. I frequently listen to your creations on You Tube. I like them all, but have been especially enjoying your Heroic Poem. Although all of your creations are wonderful.

  • Thanks very much, Paul.  

  • I would highly suggest getting Woodwinds II. I got those and I love the sound they provide. The Flute II has a wonderful sound! It may work very nicely for some solo lines. I believe you also get the Alto Flute which can be very helpful to have.

    If you are creating larger orchestrations, you could use alternate articulations from the flutes to create a third flute, or use the Alto Flute as a third flute. Some of that writing would depend of the range of the Flute parts.

  • Thanks for the advice. I think I will go ahead and buy Woodwinds II. I was waiting in hopes that woodwinds would be on sale again soon, but no luck on that so far.

  • Afternoon all .  I've spent the last month looking at what Articulations i would benafit from having in my Pallette and after seeing your post Paul i can see im not the only one !


    i Havent got anywere with the Decision as ideally we'd like them all :)))

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    That is so true. Of course, then I have to learn to use them all effectively, which is another matter entirely. 😕