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From the delightfully melodic to the utterly alarming, Gothic Instruments DRONAR Live Strings features a huge range of string articulations which, thanks to the easy-to-use DRONAR engine, spring to life to present hundreds of evolving, highly playable and expressive cinematic presets to add emotion and drama to your music.
With 10GB of world-class live recordings being fed into a huge multi-track modular plus synth, effect, arpeggio and rhythm sequencer controls, this is a powerful cinematic beast worthy of heaven and hell.
731 presets in total
Includes 204 .nki presets each built from 12 individual Drone presets
10GB of audio (compressed to 9GB in Kontakt’s lossless format)
Developed for the full (paid for) version of Kontakt 5.6
Performed by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Evolving, rich and complex sounds that would otherwise take hours to create
Create creepy, otherworldly sci-fi atmospheres or rich, romantic, melodic pads
From sharp, loud and dramatic to soft, soothing and dreamy
Foreboding and suspenseful to relief and calm
The perfect companion for movie, tv and video game soundtrack projects as well as Pop and Ambient music
Expert and beginner friendly
4 ‘ambiences’ - Close (large ensemble, close mics), Small (small ensemble), Hall and Cathedral
6 pages of simple controls deliver massive control
Create your own rhythm patterns in amongst the pad magic with the Rhythm Editor
Dive deeper with DRONAR´s unique independent arpeggiators
Onboard FX provide further sound design options
Live Strings is the third instalment in Gothic Instruments´ critically-acclaimed DRONAR series. This expressive, highly playable module creates a massive range of strings-based textures from natural live strings and live-played effects to awe-inspiring soundscapes. Hundreds of varied presets and a huge set of controls are all designed to invite deep exploration, expression and discovery.
A universe from a single note
DRONAR creates mind-expanding atmospheres from a very small number of notes played (1 to 4 recommended). It automatically spreads out the chord in the mid-range, adds a root bass note, a high note and then adds evolving sound effects. 8 simultaneous different sounds are then animated with LFOs, a rhythm sequencer and arpeggiators to bring them to life. The results are rich and dramatic.
A hand free for expression
This sonic complexity from one hand frees up the other to expressively control dials with mouse drags or external MIDI controller knobs, and record the changes as a performance in your DAW.
Subtle dial movements give deep expression, ideal for soundtracks as well as highly expressive pads, patterns and atmospheres in any genre.
A complete atmosphere
Because DRONAR instantly adds low, mid-range and high sounds plus sound effects, you barely need other non-Dronar sounds to quickly create a complete piece of atmospheric, expressive music.
Beginner and Expert Friendly
Needing to only play a few notes and move a few dials to get such rich expression is inviting for beginners, but an expert will get further by knowing what notes to play and how to express emotions using the dials. Beyond the shimmering immediacy of the ‘Main Page’ awaits a whole other world of expert control, turning DRONAR into a vast modular multi-timbral synth/sampler with multiple independent arpeggiators.
Expect foreboding evolving atmospheres loaded with suspense, otherworldly powerful pulsating pads, haunting swarms and ear-melting scrapes and screeches that will strike horror in to your audience. On the lighter side, complex shimmering soundscapes abound alongside magical melodic strings brimming with emotion and rich tranquil textures.
Performed by players from the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and recorded at Parr Street Studio in Liverpool, the strings are offered in 4 ‘ambiences’ - Close (large ensemble, close mics), Small (small ensemble), Hall (concert hall) and Cathedral (cathedral).
The Hall and Cathedral ambiences were created inside Vienna MIR’s advanced spatial mixing engine which uses thousands of impulse recordings to generate much more accurate spaces than are possible with conventional impulse reverbs.
DRONAR’s Live Strings Module comes with hundreds of presets lovingly designed to show its amazing potential, divided into many categories. The more standard articulations include:
Sustain - instead of flat straight notes (like typical sample libraries), the players were told to undulate in and out in intensity. This creates a very live feeling of movement around the stereo spaces.
Staccato - fast short notes, played alone and in rhythmical loops
Pizzicato - fast plucked notes played alone and in rhythmical loops
Trills - undulate quickly between two notes, either semitones or whole tones. Semitones and whole tones are triggered by drone keys next to each other so you can switch between them.
More unusual articulations include:
Col Legno - where the strings are tapped with wood on the back of the bow for a creepy sound like little creatures.
Pins are strings plucked with fingernails next to the tuning nuts for tight high eerie sounds. “Nails” are the same thing on lower strings.
Groans are the bows being dragged hard against the strings while the pitch slides up or down.
Screeches are similar but with the pitch range more narrow and undulating slowly.
Swarms are played tremolo (fast bow back and forth) with the pitch sliding around.
Swirls are similar but played straight not tremolo.
Ponticello are tremolo played very close to the bridge, producing a silvery sound high up, and resonant sound like a didgeridoo low down.
To learn more about DRONAR Live Strings´ features and potential we strongly suggest downloading the PDF menu to the right of this page.
THE CONTROLS (for full details please download the PDF manual on the right side of this page)
Behold, shimmering clouds of magoc space dust and dazzling light wheels! Hear the immediate impact on the sound and get a good understanding of the way DRONAR works simply by tweaking the six dials on the main page…
INTENSITY (also controlled by the Mod Wheel) takes you from silent to powerful by fading up through different velocity layers.
MOVEMENT has a global effect on the intensity of the arpeggiators – set it high for strong effects and zero for a flat pad sound.
HI, MID and LO control the automatically generated high notes, mid-range notes and bass notes. Moving these dials has a huge expressive effect on the music. It’s only like using a mixing desk and yet – having it so accessible in front of you encourages you to work with the balance as part of the original creative expression, instead of a mix decision later on.
FX controls the level of 20-second futuristic, unpitched sound effects loops in the mix and adds instant movement and complexity.
The Expert Page
The Expert Page shows you all the settings for the current, last played Drone from the 12 Drone Keys. Each drone has four layers – FX, HI, MID, LO, and the Expert page presents a separate set of controls for each layer. Each layer consists of two different sounds.
Need some inspiration? Hit the ‘Randomize samples’ button on the Expert Page and Dronar will keep all your settings but instantly swap the samples in the 8-named sound slots (2 per layer). New sound variations will abound and if it’s not quite the sound you’re after, keep hitting the button for more. Want to thicken up your sound? Each layer has a THICK button which adds in extra notes. Hearing the sound you want? Easily save the settings with the ‘Store Drone’ button.
Rhythm Editor Page
DRONAR’s rhythm editor allows you to create intricate patterns re-generated from live played rhythms and intertwine them with the atmospherics and pad magic. Create your own rhythms at the speed you want - from slow chugs to high speed 32nd notes. Add accents and put in triplets, spread and humanise the chords – experimentation is the key and it’s very hard to make a bad sound! What’s more, DRONAR’s arpeggiator rhythmical tools can interact with the Editor to create unpredictable rhythms and undulations.
LFO & FX Page
Add movement to your sound, including panning, vibrato or siren effects with the LFO settings. Or tweak the Drone Effects to distort or dampen the sound, or add thickness, interest and colour. Reverb and Delay sends can also be controlled from this page.
Get sounds really moving or pulsing over time, synced to your DAW’s host Tempo with DRONAR’s multiple and truly unique independent arpeggiators including PITCH, INTENSITY and FILTER.
Master FX Page
DRONAR’s Master FX page features standard effects including EQ, Compressor, Delay and Gate. DRONAR also includes a couple of digital (algorithmic) reverbs and a set of convolution impulses including some creative and unusual impulses for sound design - again, experimentation is the key!
Andromeda by Bryan Nguyen (Dressed)
Andromeda by Bryan Nguyen (Naked)
Bright Sunset by Michael Frankenberger
Cabal by Chris Porter (Dressed)
Cabal by Chris Porter (Naked)
Frozen in Time by Stuart Sweeney (Naked)
Gateway To Hell by Jonathan Sharp (Dressed)
Gateway To Hell by Jonathan Sharp (Naked)
Interverse by Kyle Kniceley (Naked)
Interverse by Kyle Kniceley (Dressed)
Omega Centaurus by Vinko Borcic (Dressed)
Omega Centaurus by Vinko Borcic (Naked)
Smugglers Cavern by Max Ablitzer
The Source by Kyle Kniceley (Naked)
The Source by Kyle Kniceley (Dressed)
DRONAR Live Strings Demo by Richard Jacques (Naked)
"This time it´s real strings that get the Dronar treatment... and it works brilliantly well. Instant HUGE textures with no effort... full of movement and depth. Amazing presets but when you WANT to get your hands dirty you can do so much deep editing it´s incredible. A PERFECT combination of Symphonic strings and sound design that can sound as real or as synthetic as you like. Amazing!"- Ty Unwin, Composer
"The string samples themselves represent a diversity of articulations and sounds - the patch-building possibilities are endless. The best Dronar yet!" - Rated 9/10 - Computer Music
"Dronar Live Strings is a magnificent sound module that delivers versatile and evolving cinematic soundscapes. An inspiring addition to any composer’s toolkit." - Epicomposer.com Click here to read the review in full
"Ultimately this is an excellent tool for scoring, game and movie sound design and similar applications. Even played with just a couple of keys, it is able to generate organic, pulsing, complex and sometimes terrifying string parts and with great tweakability, can be bent to do pretty much anything you could ask of it." - AskAudio Click here to read the review in full
“DRONAR Live Strings is a fantastic addition to my palette. I never knew strings could sound like this! DRONAR provides endless sonic possibilities through a highly flexible and unique interface that incorporates both Arpeggiator and Rhythmic engines. Perfect for edgy and dark textures across all genres. A must for Game, Film and TV composers.” - Richard Jacques (Multi award-winning, BAFTA and IVOR nominated composer, James Bond 007: Blood Stone, Mass Effect, Starship Troopers).
"Dronar talks, sings and roars in murky tones, and although it isn’t exactly an all-around tool, it fills that one certain, shadowed, murky, ominous and dangerous slot perfectly. I’ve rarely - if ever - encountered such lovely moods from a ready-built library, and just browsing through the presets becomes a dystopian sci-fi movie soundtrack. Be warned, though: give it a finger, and it drags you to shadows for good. They don’t call these Gothic Instruments for nothing.” - Petri Alanko aka Lowland (BAFTA nominated composer, musician, producer. Quantum Break, Classical Trancelations, Alan Wake, Nightwish’s Imaginaerum The Movie)