January 29, 2010 – Karlsruhe, Germany. The Italian Harpsichord II library offers the beautiful and majestic sound of this unique instrument of an anonymous builder.
Previously only available to the owners – including Australian opera singer Joan Sutherland – the instrument has been sampled, featuring presets for all common software samplers including HAlion®, Kontakt2® and higher, EXS24® and GigaStudio3®.
To make this sound available to players worldwide, German collector Professor Andreas Beurmann and realsamples joined forces to offer a virtual version. The result is a sample library with nearly 550 single samples of the instrument to provide even subtle nuances.
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 resonances of body and strings: Therefore, every key was sampled 8 times to provide the slight yet very important timbre changes of the harpsichord. In addition, the release sounds were recorded with 4 different samples of each note. “The sounds of the key release were originally regarded as side noise and as such, they were meant to be minimised. However, they contribute to the overall picture of the real instrument and are a vital part to the perception feeling.” says Nicolay Ketterer, head of realsamples, who led the recording sessions at the Hasselburg estate, where Professor Beurmann resides.
Presets are available for all common sample formats including HAlion®, Kontakt2® and higher, EXS24® and GigaStudio3®.
Recorded in the great sounding rooms of the Hasselburg estate, custom-made Wagner™ U47w® tube microphones were used in conjunction with Crane Song™ Flamingo® preamps and Universal Audio™ 2192® digital converters recorded in 192 khz/24 bits resolution.
Furthermore, the sample library contains essays from Professor Andreas E. Beurmann himself, explaining both the historical and musical background of the instrument.
The Italian Harpsichord II library is available in 44.1/48 khz, 96 khz and 192 khz resolution, starting at $139.95 US . The sample library can be purchased directly on the realsamples website.