The big, BIG news for this month is that Native Instruments have announced the release of the Komplete 8 bundle, due September 1st 2011 - so we only have one month to wait! Being a user and a HUGE fan of the current Komplete 7 software, I felt that this was something that deserved a little bit of on investigation in order to inform you all of what you can expect from this updated bundle, which is set to include over 11,000 sounds and 110GB of samples…
KOMPLETE 8 – WHAT IS IT?
Whilst I’m sure that most of you are completely familiar with what this software is, I thought that it was worth giving a brief description just in case this is the first that you have ever heard of this renowned bundle!
Native Instruments Komplete is essentially a bundle of VST instruments and effects, along with a host of sampled sounds, that provide you with a… well… complete sonic arsenal for your studio! The package covers such a wide range of production areas including drums, synths, bass, guitars, effects and amps, sampling, pianos and more! In terms of creating sounds, if you can’t do it with what you get in Komplete, you probably won’t be able to do it anywhere! If you are wanting an all-in-one VST package for any situation, then Komplete is very likely to be it!
KOMPLETE 8 – WHAT’S NEW?
First up, you get an all-new version of the industry leading software sampler, Kontakt, now in version 5! Being a user of the highly-flexible Kontakt 4, I am very excited about this!
Secondly, you get an all new version of Komplete's standard amp modelling software, Guitar Rig 5 Pro, giving you a selection of amps, cabinets, mics and effects in order to find that perfect tone for your guitar.
Next, we have Transient Master, an all-new powerful studio effect, helping you to place instruments in the mix.
Onto Studio Drummer, a brand new Kontakt powered instrument, which seems to offer a similar visual way of working to products like BFD and EZdrummer, giving you a virtual representation of a drum kit and allowing you to mix, match and tune individual drums. Whilst I have already sworn my allegiance to Battery (also included in the Komplete 8 package), I think that this new instrument will have a great appeal for beginners and real drummers, compared with Battery's less exciting pad-interface.
Komplete 8 is also bundled with the ‘West Africa’ package, giving you a range of unusual instruments that you probably don’t already have in your sample library, and may not even have heard of! From Dunuba’s to Kenkeni’s and Balafon’s to Ngoni’s, this pack gives you a range of drum and melodic instruments from West Africa and even features a built-in sequencer with an aesthetically pleasing tribal-style interface to help you program your own rhythms… or of course you can also use the brilliant pre-programmed grooves.
However, for me, the most exciting inclusion in Komplete 8 is Retro Machines Mk2 – a collection of legendary analogue synths and keyboards! This sounds like something very special to me! Anyone else excited about this one?
On top of all this, a few of the old favourites have also been bolstered… Absynth 5 features 400 additional sounds, Massive features 750 new sounds, and FM8 has 200 new presets! All good news!
All sounds in Komplete 8 have been optimised for seamless integration with Maschine and are ready to run in all major DAWs!
KOMPLETE 8 – WHAT’S OLD?
On top of all these new additions, Native Instruments Komplete 8 also comes with everything from the Komplete 7 bundle! You are supplied with all the standard classic instruments including Reaktor (and all it’s included instruments), Battery (my favourite drum software), Massive (one of the leading synths on the market for huge bass and leads sounds), The Finger (an innovative tool for live performance, allowing you to trigger and chain effects using a MIDI keyboard), along with all the old included effects (e.g. Rammfire distortion) and all sampled Kontakt instruments (e.g. Abbey Road drums, funky Scarbee instruments, a range of highly detailed grand pianos, etc, etc).
KOMPLETE 8 – THE ULTIMATE PACKAGE
If you thought that Komplete 8 sounded like the bees knees, then you are in for one extra surprise… Native Instruments have also announced the release of what is set to be the daddy of all software bundles… Komplete 8 Ultimate! This absolute monster of a package includes 50 Komplete instruments and effects and an absolutely HUGE 240GB of sounds! This really is an all-inclusive premium bundle for music production, live performance and sound design.
Now, if you are like me, the first thing that will jump to mind when you read about Komplete 8 Ultimate is, ‘flipping heck, 240GB! Where on earth am I going to put that?!’ Worry not though, as the Komplete 8 Ultimate bundle comes on a dedicated USB 2.0 hard drive, which apart from preventing you from eating up all your computer memory, also makes for an extremely easy installation... no need to faff about with the chunky box of DVDs that comes with the standard Komplete 8 pack!
So, what exactly do you get with the Komplete 8 Ultimate package? As well as getting everything from the standard Komplete 8 bundle, the Ultimate pack also comes with a huge range of extras, specifically:
• Abbey Roads 70's, 80's and Modern drums: I've not heard them before, but the 60's drums (as included in Komplete 7 and 8) sound brilliant, so I would expect more of the same here!
• Session Strings Pro: A Kontakt powered instrument full of lush string sounds, played in various styles.
• Alicia’s Keys: A virtual piano instrument with design input from pianist and RnB star Alicia Keys.
• Razor: An Additive synthesiser used by a range of professional artists.
• Solid Bus Comp, Dynamics and EQ: A range of professional effect plug-ins.
• The Mouth: Generates audio melodies and harmonies out of whatever audio material you feed it – very cool!
• Balinese Gamelan, Maschine Drum Selection and Vintage Organs: More instruments designed for specific sounds.
• Scarbee Funk Guitar, George Duke Soul Treasures: Funky and Soulful sample instruments.
• VC160, VC2A and VC76: Some lovely sounding vintage compressor emulations!
• Evolve Mutations & Evolve Mutations 2: Kontakt powered sample-based instruments, specially built for cinematic sound design.
• Scarbee Jay-Bass, Scarbee Pre-Bass, Scarbee MM-Bass Amped, Scarbee Pre-Bass amped: A host of sampled bass instruments!
Remember, all this is on top of what is already included with the standard Komplete 8 package, so this bundle really is the ‘ultimate’ deal!
KOMPLETE 8 – SUMMARY
Whether you are already a user of an old Komplete version, or if you are new to this party, what Komplete 8 gives you is an outstanding range of sounds and software instruments at an amazing price. To purchase everything individually would cost an absolute bomb, so these bundles really are an amazing deal! In fact, the Komplete 8 Ultimate bundle offers you a saving of an incredible 82% compared to buying each product individually!
The good news for current Komplete users is that you can upgrade to the new versions for a massively cut-down price, so for me it is a real no-brainer! With Komplete 8 you also get a free €25 e-voucher, so it’s also worth popping along to the Native Instruments e-shop and seeing what else they have to offer!
Well, that concludes my little preview of these new software bundles… I’m certainly very excited to get my hands on them… and I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest if you felt the same!