Best Orchestral Percussion Libraries 2021 Every band needs a rhythm section, just like every orchestra needs its percussion. Here we are going to take a look at some of the most popular orchestral percussion libraries you can use in your template. When we talk about orchestral percussion we are talking…
Best Epic Percussion Libraries 2021
We’ve already talked about orchestral percussion previously, and now the time has come to expand on your percussion ensemble by adding some aggression and punch with epic percussion. No percussion ensemble is complete without massive taikos, epic toms and other big banging drums, so let’s get to it!
Heavyocity – Damage 2
The first Damage library for Kontakt was such a massive hit (pun intended) of a library and it still holds up even today. Damage has such a distinct sound that it’s hard not to recognize it. The guys from Heavyocity worked hard on bringing us a sequel to this already amazing library and now Damage 2 has seen the light of day. It’s as amazing as Damage 1, but bigger and better in every way. It brings a lot of new content that simply screams EPIC ACTION.
Aside from having the traditional single hits multi-sampled drums and loops, like you had in the first version of Damage, now you have a drum kit builder, ensemble kit builder and a loop kit builder. Basically, each of these enables you to create your very own custom kits based on your needs. You can mix and match a lot of different drums and create your own kits for a project that you can save as a preset.
You also have a custom midi performance tool so you can create your own loops, five discrete mic positions, but what really amazed us is the updated 3D positioning tool which enables you to place your drums anywhere you want on the virtual stage. No other sample libraries have this option yet.
Aside from this there are well over 864 loops that you can mix and well over 700 various sound sources that include drums and sound-designed damage FX. All of this is neatly packed in 60GB and you will need the FULL version of Kontakt to run it. If you want to own Damage 2 it’ll cost you $399.
Auddict – PercX
To quote Auddict, this is the most advanced virtual percussion engine. And it truly feels that way because we weren’t able to find anything like it anywhere. This is a percussion library that runs in its own dedicated virtual instrument engine.
Taikos, toms, snares, kicks, hats, hybrid percussion SFX, dhols, djuns, frame drums, you name it, this one has it all. The biggest feature of PercX is the Kit Generator which enables you to auto-generate entirely new arrangements that you can play with the press of a button but it’s not limited only to that. Aside from generating looped performance you can edit the kit and use whatever instruments you want and you can also edit and tweak the generated performance inside PercX’s own midi editor which is an amazing feature. Every performance you create is immediately tempo-synced to your DAW.
There are three flavors to choose from: PercX Core features the core kits samples and you can choose an additional sample library of your choice as a bonus. PercX Pro feature the core version and 4 additional sample libraries: Cinematic Rhythms, Hybrid Pulse, Traditional X and Producer Essentials. PercX Complete has all the features of PercX Pro, and additional raw drum samples you can mix and edit yourself. The prices vary between the collections.
The midi editor inside PercX is truly amazing, because you can get really fast results and edit dynamics with a single button, which is so rewarding. But that’s not all of it. This is not just another epic percussion loop library because not only have you got total control over the loops, you can also turn on the manual mode which enables you to play multi-sampled single hits with many RRs, so PercX acts as a great percussion sample library. It truly is a revolutionary tool and we highly recommend it!
Spitfire Audio – Hans Zimmer Percussion Professional
This is one of the libraries that sparks interest not only because it’s a Spitfire library but also because of the talent attached to it. Hans Zimmer, Junkie Xl, Alan Meyerson… Do we really need to say more?
This library is actually a collection of London percussion and solo percussion libraries from the Hans Zimmer line of products and it features everything you will ever need to get that massive pounding epic percussion in your compositions. From taikos, over tombeks, djuns, boobams and others, this is epic percussion a-la-carte.
Sound-wise it’s the same world class studio, musicians, instruments, signal chain and engineers, overseen in every detail by Hans himself and his team. There are separate mixes of instruments that you pick from either Hans Zimmer, Junkie XL or Alan Meyerson to get THAT sound and each mix version has a different character to it so you get a lot of varieties to choose from.
All of the drums are recorded with up to 6 dynamic layers and 9 RRs per sample which makes this a very deep-sampled library with well over 130GBs of content. If you want to be the lucky owner of this library it will cost you 599 Euros.
EastWest – Stormdrum 3
Here is another library that still holds up even today. EastWest Stormdrum series has been around for almost a decade and it was the first epic percussion library of choice for many composers out there. Stormdrum 2 was a big hit back then (again, pun intended), but Stormdrum 3 was a much needed refreshment featuring a lot of big drums, metals and exotic percussion.
The forefront of this library is a massive collection of various taikos, from huge to the smallest ones, followed by big drum ensembles and various metals and shakers. This library features a hand-picked collection by master percussionist Mickey Hart and it also has a Remo private collection of select drums. It’s an epic percussion warehouse in a way. As with the other EW libraries you’ll need their PLAY engine in order to run it.
Sound-wise it sounds sublime and it was beautifully recorded at EastWest studio 1 in Hollywood. There are a lot of microphone setups per instrument that you can blend inside PLAY engine in order to get your very own sound.
Another interesting addition to this collection are gongs, clocks and waterphones and these instruments have such a distinct character to them, especially clocks that are sampled from Nick Phoenix’s collection of antique clocks. The library will set you back 86GB of space on your hard drive and $299.