The Italian Harpsichord II library features an instrument built around 1590 by an anonymous maker. Being very typical for the Italian style, the instrument features a housing seperated from the painted cabinet. Furthermore, the instrument - which had been owned by the Australian opera singer Joan Sutherland - sports a special feature: The housing is not bearing directly on the cabinet, but on two ledges below the ribs. This allows for the under-body to resonate.
Although the keyboard is showing signs of wear, the harpsichord still remains in fully playable condition despite its age. It is now available for the first time in the sampler within the Italian Harpsichord II library, presented in its original Kirnberger III-tuning at 378 Hz.
Like all harpsichords, the instrument is not touch-sensitive in the sense of a piano. However, even if the differences are minuscule, not any given note will sound exactly the same due to different resonances of body and strings.
Until now, many keyboards and samplers represented harpsichords by always triggering off the exact same digital sample, leaving a cold and sterile sounding impression. In order to improve upon previous recreations and to pay tribute to the liveliness and depth of this antique instrument, we captured 8 variations of each note.
The release sounds of the keys are also of major importance: What was originally side noise is now often overlooked and even simply left out in artifical simulations, resulting in a very abstract overall picture. Therefore, we recorded 4 release samples of each note.
The sample library consists of nearly 550 single samples.
To start right away, presets are available for all common sample formats including HAlion®, Kontakt2® and higher, EXS24® and GigaStudio3®.
For the critical task of recording this spinet, we employed custom-made Wagner U47w® tube microphones in conjunction with Crane Song Flamingo® preamps and Universal Audio 2192® digital converters to do the instrument justice. For maximum sound quality, we recorded in 192 khz/24 bits resolution, downsampled to 44.1 khz/24 bits.
In addition to the samples, the library contains essays from Professor Andreas E. Beurmann himself, explaining both the historical and musical background of the instrument.
The following reviews have been placed by customers who also bought this product from us. All reviews are provided through eKomi, Europes largest independent customer review company.
Italian harpsichords aren't sampled that often, but Realsamples has sampled two of them (I now own both, and they're quite different from each other). There is good attention to detail, proper miking and playing techniques, and excellent historical write-ups of each instrument in their suite. Sometimes they are a bit sloppy about making sure all variations of the Kontakt instruments are properly sample-mapped, but they are also very responsive, and this particular library had no issues.
This Multi Format Library (included formats listed on top) does not include any software to play the sounds on your computer. Any compatible software is required to load and play the sounds of this library.
For your own protection this library is provided as individual personalized files including a
Digital Water Mark - DWM!