tools for media composers

Gear Overview - Hornberg Research hb1 MIDI Breath Station

I've been using the Hornberg Research hb1 MIDI Breath Station for quite a while now and have always wholeheartedly recommended it to my template clients.
The release of their control app marked a great opportunity to make this little marvel of wood and brushed aluminum the subject of the very first Orchestral Gear Overview.

Dylan Agajanian - Huntington Beach Template Build

Hopping across the pond is always an exciting adventure, and even more so when coupled with the chance to set up a brand new large template for a really great person.
End of April 2017 to early May, composer Dylan Agajanian flew me out to Huntington Beach, CA to set up a 1500 track template focused on corporate video, advertising and game scoring.
This new template, built around Orchestral Tools' Berlin Series is built to last, with expansion in the coming years in mind.

This was a great experience and I was very happy to hear that Dylan was highly satisfied with the work we've done:

Tobias is truly the best at navigating the technical process of setting up an orchestral template on multiple machines. He carefully explained every step on multiple levels so it was extremely easy to follow along. He is a consummate professional on all levels. I couldn't have done it with out his help and am so grateful I stumbled across his website!


Cinematic Studio Strings Review


Finding the right sample libraries for your template is one of the most important parts of template building.
This is why I have decided to start a new Template Reviews section, which will give you overviews of products that I personally use and vouch for. Reviews focus on how to integrate these sample libraries into your templates and also talk a lot about their general usage.

The first such review is for Cinematic Studio Strings, a great ensemble string library by the creators of Cinematic Strings 2!
Head over to the Resources section to read the full review! featured in Thinkspace Education course

Renowned course and music degree provider Thinkspace Education have published a course about the basics of template building, called "Template in a Weekend".
For the course content, creator Guy Michelmore took the time to host a quite exhaustive interview with me about all things templates. Audio snippets from that very nice interview are interspersed with the course text and it is a great source of information!
Check it out and of course if after working through the course you have any questions or want some guidance, you know where to find me!

Vienna Ensemble Pro 6 is out - and we are ready!

Bildschirmfoto 2016-07-30 um 14.21.57

After several years with a gigantic number of free updates to Vienna Ensemble Pro 5, the fine folks at VSL have released Vienna Ensemble Pro 6, the next generation of the venerable plugin host and best tool on the planet for building templates.

VE Pro 6 comes with a completely redesigned interface that now uses tabs for all the instances to keep everything in one window.
The list of changes and new features is absolutely gigantic. VSL have really listened to their user base and added a plethora of much-requested features.

Just a small part of the change list (and my personal favourites):
- Instances can be freely reordered and this order reflect in the plugin inside the sequencer.
- The plugin now lists instances sorted per the machine they are on, which is great with lots of slave machines.
- Instances can be coloured and in general the colour selector is much improved. And you can colour multiple items at once, yeah!
- Metaframes can now auto-save and will only do so when no played is active, thus making sure they only save when not in the way.
- Plugin instances can now be raised directly from the host, jumping to the correct instance without having to click "raise". Even greater, this setting can also be automated!
- Folder Support!

And, here is the single most greatest invention:
Channels can now be disabled, preserving their content and settings, but completely unloading them from memory. This allows hosting tons of instruments within VE Pro, ready to be activated when needed. The enabled/disabled state can be automated, thus making it possible to load pre-assigned plugin instances remote into VE Pro as needed. No more "hosting rarely used stuff directly in the sequencer just so it does not consume memory when not needed".

So - should you use it?

Yes, wholeheartedly YES. VE Pro 6 is a great step forward for template building and if the past is any indication, VSL will provide a plethora of updates to polish it to perfection.
Compatibility with existing projects is extremely good. In my tests here, all existing templates connect and disconnect much faster, thus saving quite a lot of time when switching sequencer projects. Performance in idle has been improved quite substantially, with playback/recording performance being in line or slightly better than with VE Pro 5. Since VE Pro now manages graphics resources much better, a substantial improvement can also be seen when switching between instances/plugins.

Luca Turilli - new template build

Luca Turilli Music Productions

On-location work is always tremendously exciting and satisfying and it is especially so when one has the chance to work with someone at the top of his field.
June 2016 saw me returning to Italy to help Luca Turilli (from Rhapsody/LT's Rhapsody - creators of cinematic metal) with setting up his giant composing template used for all his album productions.

Luca loves to create music at 360°, ranging from classical to modern, mixing the most epic orchestral impact with the electronic ‘hybrid’ vibe of the last generation of soundtracks. The new updated music template, whose sounds are distributed on 3 computers, will allow him to work on his future music beyond any technological limit and with the same sound quality of the greatest Hollywood composers!

Luca Turilli and Tobias Escher
In the words of the man himself:

I want to thank my friend TOBIAS ESCHER from ORCHESTRAL TEMPLATES ( for visiting me in Trieste and to have updated my music template based on the CUBASE 8.5 software. 3500 tracks featuring all the instruments existing on the planet, the real dream tool for every composer!

Logic Pro X Tutorial Update 11/2015

The Orchestral Templates with VE Pro 5 tutorial has been updated slightly to correct some mistakes and new new developments into account.
Make sure you're reading version 2.4, which can be download on the Tutorial page.
Stacks Image 25

Chris Babida (Hongkong) new template

Chris Babida
Summer 2013 had me fly to Hongkong to set up composer and producer Chris Babida's new scoring template tailored towards crossover and soundtrack productions.
For this new setup we conceptualized a new master PC and two powerful slave PCs with 64 GB Ram each that now host a massive 4000 track template in a dedicated scoring room, adding to Chris' existing Mac-based facilities. This provides two separate scoring places that fit all genres and situations.

Chris Babida and Tobias Escher

Tutorial updated for Logic Pro X

Logic Pro X
Apple’s surprise release of Logic Pro X has brought a major I redesign to the software. Some minor changes in the software also mean that some things are done differently than before. All this is reason enough for a brand-new version of Orchestral Templates with VE Pro 5.

Version 2.2 of the tutorial adds redone screenshots made with Logic Pro X as well as some content changes. Because of the differences between Logic Pro 9 and the new version, the tutorial optimized for Logic Pro 9 will still be available for download. Head over to the tutorial page and download the tutorial!

Introducing "Checklists"

Startup Checklist
I’m happy to announce the start of a new kind of resource for composers using orchestral templates: Checklists.
Many clients voiced their wish for short, concise instructions how to do certain things. I’m happy to deliver :)

These checklists contain step by step instructions, along with references to other checklists if something goes wrong or if some special action needs to be taken.
We’re kicking things off with the Startup List, available for free download from the Resources section. This list leads you though loading a template and makes sure everything loads correctly.
Stay tuned for other lists, some of which are already referenced in the Startup List.

This website makes no effort to collect any personal information beyond what you willingly enter yourself (for example in the contact form). If you are in doubt any any data collected, by all means contact us!