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New Silver Octopus Concert Series Released

PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 12:56 am
by Charles Braund
Silver Octopus Studios are pleased to announce the release of the new Concert Series libraries. Details can be found here;-

Ten models ranging in size from a 20 stop 2 manual instrument up to a 125 stop four manual are available. The two 65 stop instruments are available as either 3 or 4 manual instruments. The larger instruments feature a separate floating String division and most of the instruments include a number of additional free percussion stops including Chimes and Carillon, Celesta and Harp.
A trial set of the 125 stop model is available with a reduced compass of two octaves for the manuals and one octave for the pedal is available for download at:- ... ptwerk.rar

The initial sets are close recorded and presented dry since many users now have their own sophisticated reverberation facilities The sets are designed to be used with this additional reverberation or to develop their acoustic within the room in which they are placed. Wet sets with Convolved reverberation may be available in due course depending on any feedback as to which will be the most popular Convolution settings to apply.

Re: New Silver Octopus Concert Series Released

PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 10:28 am
by adrianw
Congratulations on finally releasing this series. I enjoy your blog and know from reading it how much work has gone into it.

I eagerly downloaded and installed the demo set this morning. Having looked-up how to manually learn keyboard and pedal MIDI settings (one becomes used to images to right-click on) all went well. I was, however, slightly disappointed to find that this was just two octaves - your studio set from a few years ago was one of the pioneers of time-limited cut-out demos which are so much more helpful and I had hoped and expected that you might do this again. (And although a full compass full function 10-stop demo was also promised in your blog and is mentioned on each of the smaller organ details pages, this does not seem to be avaiable?)

So far, only the 65 stop and larger specifications are "published". Actually, the only way of finding out what the specifications are seems to be to squint hard at the stop jamb images. (And I had to resort to trial and error for URLs to find the images for the 4 manual 65 since a typo has made them unavailable.) A downloadable spreadsheet or table would be helpful.

The very understandable lack of details of anything smaller than 65 stops makes me wonder why you would want to make your life so difficult and offer as standard no less than TEN variants? I know your approach makes it possible to make lots of subsets, but surely spending your limited time on two or three well-considered specifications, ("City Concert Hall", "Cathedral", "Parish Church" say) carefully voiced into convincing instruments would be better than the huge number apparently to be offered. And if these are actually each going to be voiced differently according to their specification, which will certainly be necessary, how can just inviting users to choose the available stops from a 125-stop demo monster allow a fair audition?

By way of illustration, with no introductory pricing the price would probably limit me to the 65 stop configurations. Unfortunately what I can see of the specifications of both the 65 stop models look a bit random and odd. Although mine is a 3 manual console, so I might prefer the 3 manual, the lack of a solo division on that version means there is no Tuba anywhere. Sadly, I can't live without a Tuba! And on the 4 manual version (where I could use the Solo as a floating division) the Tuba is present and correct but other reeds seem very sparse. On the Great there is just a rather thin 8' Posaune and absolutely nothing else. (Might the fuller Tromba have been a better choice if that is all there is? Or will you revoice the Posaune to be fuller sounding on this version?) And it seems odd to provide two separate "Gt Reeds on ..." couplers for just this one reed stop! Even worse, there is apparently no room for a 4' reed on any manual despite the version offering no less than 3 different Great mixtures.

Perhaps I will have to save up for the 75. Will these organs allow CODM tinkering to allow us to roll-our-own cut-down specifications from larger instruments?

The tremulants, despite making a racket like a Victorian weaving mill, (that I would have to voice out!), seem to all be computed rather than sampled? I suppose I understand the motivation - it is obviously hard to match tremulant rates from different sources for a composite organ - but real sampled tremulant stops would be one of the big winners from a dry organ since sampled release tails are always a compromise.

Finally, the dry thing. You say that many users have sophisticated reverb options so will only offer dry sets for the time being, but I am not there yet and frankly I am not convinced that is where the HW market is. I know all the arguments for dry sets, but I have found few of the post processing reverb options really work well for me. (And I think I have tried them all short of building a large stone cathedral to play in). Real-time convolution reverb comes closest but is very compute intensive, sometimes in my setup to the extent of starving HW of processor cycles, a bit laggy and generally a lot of hassle. Also, cost is an issue - the best software is not cheap and there do not seem to be a lot of free or affordable options available for spaces - York minster is lovely but not always the right choice! Algorithmic reverb is a lot easier to implement but ultimately never sounds quite right. I found I spent way too much of my time tinkering with reverb paramenters rather than making music. (Probably just a lack of self-discipline, I know). I now use a small hardware reverb box which is miraculous for its price, and allows instant adjustments via proper knobs. It is great for wet sets with just-slightly-too-dry acoustics such as the SP Burton, where it produces a very convincing effect, but struggles with completely dry sets.

All of this is a long way of asking, will there be a free upgrade when you do a convolution set? And will it be coming soon?

Sorry for the length of the post. And I hope it doesn't sound too negative about what is an exciting set - please read it as a reflection of the fact that I am very interested in this set and your approach!

- Adrian.

Re: New Silver Octopus Concert Series Released

PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 11:01 am
by smfrank
The website says, "A fully operational 10 stop Trial instrument* is available to download at:"
and then there is no link.

Re: New Silver Octopus Concert Series Released

PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 2:20 pm
by Charles Braund
Unfortunately I had some problems with loading the web pages which took all night to sort out. There is still the odd link problem but this will be sorted out ASAP.
Since the largest libraries are the ones of most interest to many, the priority was to get these published and available first. I just haven't had time to publish the remaining smaller model pages yet although the various models are finished. The pages will be published in the next few days.
I take note of the fact that the specs are shown as graphical representations rather than lists and I will also provide these in due course.
The lack of aTuba in the 65-3 (there is a Fanfare Trumpet instead) will also be addressed in the next day or so. Whilst the Trumpet is indeed a Tuba like stop in volume it isn't the same tonally.
With over 10,000 samples used for the largest model and correspondingly less for smaller models as they go down in size, it can get very confusing keeping everything tied in together so there are bound to be a few teething problems. However, these should be sorted out as I discover them or someone makes me aware of them.
I am still considering the provision of sampled tremulant stops for a few specific registers such as the Vox Humanas however, careful alterations via the voicing tools will provide an improved result. Providing sampled tremulant stops throughout however, means almost doubling the number of existing samples and would take several months.
The wet versions as, when, or if they come into being will also take a considerable amount of time to produce and will start with the smaller models contrary to the way the dry sets were prepared. Since there will close on 50,000 samples for the 125 stop model as an example, it's all a rather large and time consuming task and whilst it is most likely that there will be some form of upgrade path available, it certainly won't be free as I'm sure you can understand.
As soon as I am able to do them, I will post some performance demos up on the site.
As regards the free complete10 stop demo model, I had decided not to provide this initially (however, the mention of its existence remained on the initial uploaded pages of the smaller models whereas all mention had been removed from the larger model pages). I will probably provide it now in light of the comments received but it will take me a day or so to do so.

Re: New Silver Octopus Concert Series Released

PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 3:34 pm
by Tweedle_Dee
I'm very happy to hear about this release, particularly because they are dry samples which work best for my church installation. I haven't downloaded the demo yet and I'll probably wait for the 10 stop trial instrument first.

I have a few questions:
Are these encrypted? It might be useful to be able to use the CODM for customization.

For the Georgian set it says the following: "PLEASE NOTE THAT THE SAMPLE SETS BELOW ARE LICENCED FOR PRIVATE HOME USE ONLY. PLEASE CONTACT US IF YOU WISH TO USE ANY OF THE SETS FOR NON DOMESTIC USE WHICH ARE SUPPLIED IN A DIFFERENT FORMAT." I assume that means the price goes up for church installations? Is this the case for the concert series also? I apologize if I missed that somewhere on your website.

Re: New Silver Octopus Concert Series Released

PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 4:20 pm
by Charles Braund
The samples are encrypted for general release and many are dongle controlled. Where requested a CODM can be supplied and within certain parameters the use of hbw. encrypted samples makes little difference. Likewise in certain circumstances, some sets are not dongle controlled although they are still encrypted to prevent piracy.
Customers wishing to use our sets in a church environment may need different samples or ones that may have had to be modified for the particular church wanting to use them. In other cases, a church may need non-encrypted wav. samples for one reason or another.
In most cases there is no specific "premium" for "off the peg" sets that are used in churches but this does depend on exactly what is required for each installation and how much support might be required. As an example a church that wants a basic off the shelf library but then wants us to carry out alterations including replacement stops etc. will need to be charged for the extra work required. This of course would apply equally to a home user wanting changes however, churches etc. are very much more likely to require alterations beyond the basic sets hence the T&C's statement
Due to the way in which our sample sets are created, considerable customisation possibilities which are not generally possible with facsimile or wet sets can be undertaken.

Re: New Silver Octopus Concert Series Released

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:56 am
by Gerryo

I am trying to respond to an email you sent me, but I keep getting an error message saying your server refused the message. Could you look into this please?

Final-Recipient: rfc822;
Action: Failed
Status: 5.7.1 (delivery not authorized, message refused)