Virtual instruments put the power to create everything from the unmistakable growl of the Fender Rhodes electric piano to the circuit-bent psychedelic tones of the classic Moog synthesizer right at your finger tips; even when the instruments themselves aren’t accessible. Since most home recording studios don’t have the resources, let alone the space, to house the hundreds of different instruments we all wish we had, taking advantage of virtual instruments with your recording software is an effective and efficient way to expand your home recording capabilities.
Types of Virtual instruments for Your Recording Studio
The types of virtual instruments available for your home recording studio are basically endless. With the digital audio workstation software used today, you can successfully re-create everything from an electric guitar to digital synthesizers to acoustic sounding drums. The sheer power virtual instruments add to any digital audio workstation make you and your home recording studio not only incredibly powerful, but versatile and dynamic as well.
With that being said, it’s important to understand the two distinct types of virtual instruments available today.
Sample Based Virtual Instruments — When a Virtual Instrument is said to be sample based, it means that the sounds that are produced are based on real life audio samples created by recording the actual instrument. Sample based virtual instruments use a large library of recorded sounds to emulate how the instrument would sound if it were actually in your home recording studio. For acoustic instruments like a violin, guitar, and many drums, sample based virtual instruments are often said to be better at mimicking the intended sound more accurately.
Sound Generating Virtual Instruments — Unlike sample based virtual instruments, sound generating virtual instruments rely on the software to generate the sound itself. Since instruments like synthesizers, keyboards and electronic drums are digital instruments that have always relied on a computer to generate their sound, emulating their tone is often best done by sound generating virtual instruments that can closely mimic the original software.