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SampleTraxx – Trumpet FX (Review)

sampletraxx trumpet fx

Trumpet FX is SampleTraxx’s latest release, a collaboration with trumpet player Rory Simmons and sound designer & trailer composer Si Begg. SampleTraxx’s sound effects have been used on major trailer campaigns such as Alien Covenant, Blade Runner 2049, Jigsaw, Geostorm, Halo 5, Battlefield, Overwatch, Inhumans, War of the Planet of the Apes, and more. If you’re looking for a unique yet organic sound design tool to create your next Braam or Drone sound, this might just be the ticket.

We were kindly provided with a review copy of SampleTraxx TrumpetFX.

OVERVIEW

The best way to describe Trumpet FX is that it’s a kind of trumpet synth. But instead of using synthesized sounds, it uses human-generated organic instrument sounds ranging from breaths of air to single notes. The library provides many options for unique and creative sound design, especially when it comes to composing for trailers or writing tension and horror cues.

Trumpet FX is a sample library for the full version of Kontakt 5.8 and above. The library provides users with 907 MB of content including over 200 samples in high-quality 48kHz/24bit WAV format. Trumpet FX contains 39 instrument patches in total.

WHAT’S IN THE BOX?

The library comes with a main Kontakt instrument folder containing the following .nki files:

  • Trumpet FX Air and Breaths
  • Trumpet FX Atmospheres
  • Trumpet FX Clusters
  • Trumpet FX Distorted and Glitchy 1
  • Trumpet FX Distorted and Glitchy 2
  • Trumpet FX Init
  • Trumpet FX Phrases 1
  • Trumpet FX Phrases 2
  • Trumpet FX Shorts
  • Trumpet FX Single Notes
  • Trumpet FX Sweeps

Nested within the main instruments folder is another instrument collection called “Trumpets Playable”. While the first instrument folder is all about sound effects, this sub-group has some more musical applications. I suspect almost all of the featured instruments in the Trumpets Playable section can be used to create harmonic background textures and drones in any key. Some are especially useful for tension and horror cues.

THE TRUMPET FX INTERFACE

The Trumpet FX Interface consists of 4 main sections – Sample Mode, Filters, Volume Envelope, and Master FX. While the waveform display shows the current sample, there are 3 different modes for sample editing, including Dynamic, Static, and Global settings. This provides enormous flexibility with regard to creating unique sound effects. For example, in Dynamic Mode, all the controls in both the Filter and Volume Envelope sections can be set independently for each individual sample. This makes it easy to quickly edit or make adjustments to multiple samples. 

Sampletraxx – Trumpet FX interface

There’s also a Randomize feature within Dynamic Mode that allows you to experiment with different values whenever a sample is triggered. This leads to surprising and often very interesting and useful results.

THE SOUND OF TRUMPET FX

Playing through the patches in Trumpet FX made me think “Miles Davis meets Hans Zimmer“. For example, the first patch, Air and Breaths, is perfect for creating organic-sounding background textures. The Phrases and Short notes included are especially good for Braams, quirky dramedy hits, or other attention-getting effects.

But there’s so much more you can do in the different modes. You can play patches individually or layer them together. And the best part is that all of the controls can be automated. Each patch can be mangled and transformed in almost endless combinations, which is what makes it so great for sound design. 

I had a blast playing around with the LFOs and especially the pitch and volume controls. Most patches allow you to create a wide range of effects, from woofy, growly, bottom-feeding low-end Braam noises all the way up to screeching creepies at the top.

TRUMPET FX – AUDIO DEMOS

CONCLUSION

Trumpet FX provides a richly organic and unusual sound design toolkit for composers who want that “special something” that makes their tracks sound different. Its varied and flexible sound-sculpting tools allow you to dig in deep to create organic-sounding braams, drones, textures, and other effects without having to be a synth wiz.

While the interface is easy to use once you play around with it, I wish it wasn’t so cluttered and hard to read against the embedded background image. There are also no presets, so you need to come up with your own starting points. But that’s not bad considering the high-quality samples and creative flexibility that comes with it.

Pros

  • Great selection of articulations and special effects
  • Very useful for sound design
  • Quickly create unique textures and sound effects

Cons

  • Limited uses in music tracks outside of sound design
  • No presets/snapshots
  • Interface is a bit cluttered and hard to read

RECOMMENDED: 8/10

TrumpetFX by SampleTraxx is available through their online store for €39.

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