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SynthManDan

Anyone using Air Structure 2

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Anyone using AIR Structure 2 ..?  I’m curious as to whether it’s worth the money if you already have Xpand!2. I would assume many presets are shared.  I don’t want to download the demo if most of the sounds are identical.  It’s currently on sale at PluginBotique for $29.

SMD

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I got it as part of the AIR Complete bundle.

It pales in comparison to Kontakt to be honest, and I hardly use it. It's not the easiest to use, and pretty long winded, but it does do the job as a sampler.

If you're looking for something as just another sound source, then don't bother. Most of the sounds are exactly the same as Xpand! 2.

I would however highly recommend spending the extra to get the upgrade to the complete bundle ($76). 

Everything except Structure is really usable, in particular MiniGrand, Hybrid 2 & Strike 2 (I normally use AD 2 for drums, but Strike 2 is great for jamming to and demos). Velvet 2 & DB33 are also very good.

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Thx for the reply!  I actually have Mini Grand, Velvet, DB-33, Hybrid2, and Xpand!2.  Strike2 is on my list.  

I had a feeling many sounds with Structure2 would be similar to Xpand!2.  

SMD

Edited by SynthManDan

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I bought the complete bundle a few years ago, and agree with msmcleod regarding Structure 2.

Soundwise there is a fair amount of overlap with Xpand!2, but Xpand!2  doesn't share the flexibility and complexity of a full blown sampler like Structure or others.  Structure, and other samplers, can be a bit fiddly to work with.

Structure has a 37+GB sound library and full multi-timbrality vs. the 4 parts per instance and 1.5GB sound library of Xpand!2.

I don't have Kontakt, but I uninstalled Structure to make room for SampleTank 4 Max.

Would I buy Structure just to have a sampler? Wouldn't recommend it, because there are better options.

Xpand!2 is great for quickly sketching out a few instrument tracks, to be replaced later in production with higher quality sampled instruments.

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AIR Instruments and Sampler are good for beginners and upstarts.  If someone is just starting out, and is on a strict budget (and CbB will appeal heavily to them, given the price point), then AIR's stuff is a really good starting point that they should consider - especially since it's often on sale for rock bottom prices at Plug-In Boutique.

Structure 2 is better than something like Independence Pro.  It has better sounds, less useless esoteric stuff in its libraries.  It's a fairly complete "starter library" for beginners, especially those into orchestral compositions.  I recommend it for those people.

Professionals making money with this stuff are [obviously] going to want the higher quality libraries, but the small fish have to start somewhere.  Nother free is as good as this, and you won't find anything as good as Structure 2 for $30 (the current price at Plug-In Boutique, at least as of last night).

Mini Grand and Strike are also pretty good, as is DB-33.

Their Creative FX Complete Plus is also a good starter set of plug-ins that work well and are easy to use.

A lot of AIR's stuff is bundled with M-Audio Interfaces, as well.  So if you're just starting out and looking at interfaces, factor that in before purchasing their stuff.  You might end up with redundant licenses, otherwise.

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6 hours ago, SomeGuy said:

AIR Instruments and Sampler are good for beginners and upstarts.  If someone is just starting out, and is on a strict budget (and CbB will appeal heavily to them, given the price point), then AIR's stuff is a really good starting point that they should consider - especially since it's often on sale for rock bottom prices at Plug-In Boutique.

Structure 2 is better than something like Independence Pro.  It has better sounds, less useless esoteric stuff in its libraries.  It's a fairly complete "starter library" for beginners, especially those into orchestral compositions.  I recommend it for those people.

Professionals making money with this stuff are [obviously] going to want the higher quality libraries, but the small fish have to start somewhere.  Nother free is as good as this, and you won't find anything as good as Structure 2 for $30 (the current price at Plug-In Boutique, at least as of last night).

Mini Grand and Strike are also pretty good, as is DB-33.

Their Creative FX Complete Plus is also a good starter set of plug-ins that work well and are easy to use.

A lot of AIR's stuff is bundled with M-Audio Interfaces, as well.  So if you're just starting out and looking at interfaces, factor that in before purchasing their stuff.  You might end up with redundant licenses, otherwise.

You’re right about M-Audio.  My M-Audio Hammer 88 came with quite a few.  I got AIR Mini Grand, Velvet, and DB-33.  It also came with SONiVOX Eighty Eight Ensemble, and a complimentary copy of Addictive Keys.  One of the best $399 I’ve ever spent!  

Edited by SynthManDan

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So, thought what the heck, download the demo.  Waste of time, entire factory sound content file is encrypted, and won’t install.  No issues with the sample player, but it’s no good if the factory sound data is encrypted.  

I’m thinking it’s an issue with the download link at PluginBotique.  Went to AIR’s site, and don’t even see “Trial” as an option.  Looks like it’s just “buy” or “upgrade”.

SMD

Edited by SynthManDan

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The Structure sample library is encrypted and only accessible by and locked to Structure.

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I wouldn't recommend Structure since it takes up so much hard drive space, and to me anyway, has limited value.  I have it on my older i5 laptop but decided not to put it on my new i7 laptop.  In the past, I worked with using the provided samples and creating my own, and found it cumbersome to deal with.  However, I like the other AIR suite synths a lot, especially Xpand, Hybrid, and DB33.  I soon found some of the sounds I was trying to get out of Structure were already in Xpand and easy to work with.

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22 hours ago, craigr68 said:

I wouldn't recommend Structure since it takes up so much hard drive space, and to me anyway, has limited value.  I have it on my older i5 laptop but decided not to put it on my new i7 laptop.  In the past, I worked with using the provided samples and creating my own, and found it cumbersome to deal with.  However, I like the other AIR suite synths a lot, especially Xpand, Hybrid, and DB33.  I soon found some of the sounds I was trying to get out of Structure were already in Xpand and easy to work with.

1TB SSDs are like $100 these days.  2TB HDDs are probably cheaper, and cheaper Samsung 2TB SSDs are very cheap, as well.  Disk Space is hardly worth the effort of worry, IMO.

If you like Xpand!2 "a lot," you should naturally like Structure 2 "more than a lot."  Structure's sound library is basically a superset of Xpand's.  And it's definitely a huge step up from Cakewalk's stock TTS-1.

If you have better Synths, then it's not worth caring about Structure 2.  For an upstart, it's more than usable.  They will eventually get better Samplers/Instruments, as well, and drop it.

AIR's stuff was designed to be the out of the box instruments/plug-ins for [earlier versions of] Pro Tools (though later versions still bundle much of it).  They [probably] should not be your "end game."

That is the perspective from which I approach the question 😛

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On 6/15/2019 at 8:12 PM, SynthManDan said:

So, thought what the heck, download the demo.  Waste of time, entire factory sound content file is encrypted, and won’t install.  No issues with the sample player, but it’s no good if the factory sound data is encrypted.  

I’m thinking it’s an issue with the download link at PluginBotique.  Went to AIR’s site, and don’t even see “Trial” as an option.  Looks like it’s just “buy” or “upgrade”.

SMD

Microsoft browsers have been known to have issues with large download (i.e. multi-GB download sizes).  If you're using Edge or IE, try downloading with Firefox, Chrome, or Opera.

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