Spitfire Abbey Road One

Is anyone interested in the new Abbey Road One library by Spitfire? It’s a full orchestral library that was recored in the famous Abbey Road One studio where they recored some of the most well known film/game scores (Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Final Fantasy XV).

While I have a zillion string libraries already, I really need a high quality woodwind library and unlike Spitfire’s BBCSO, which has most of the woodwinds a3, which is too much for my taste, this library has them a2. So, the rest of the library would be a nice plus.

I’m really looking for a smaller chamber-sized orchestra since I feel many film/game scores are actually done with smaller ensembles, Abbey Road One has me quite interested. Any thought? @Geoffers, I know you’re a big Spitfire guy, what’s your verdict? I know many here are using BBCSO, but I think this library may be even better.

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It’s a sketching tool. I must say that it does sound very nice. It’s been executed perfectly. Though if you have Albion 1 I wouldn’t bother. Just because it’s basically the same sort of library but a bit dryer. At least that’s my take on it…

From a more subjective stance I was quite dissapointed with this release. Up until now Soitfire had seemed to innovate with their releases…but this seemed to just give a different flavour to what they already have. Don’t get me wrong, it sounds much better for certain genres than albion 1… so if you were going for that aggressive Elfman sound then go for it… id probably get it if i got a commission for that style… just for convenience… fit then again Albion 1 can do that with a bit of EQ :slight_smile:

In terms of if it’s better than BBCSO… well I wouldn’t know as that library is the apple of my eye… in some ways it would be perfect for me but to be honest I love the orchestral tools libraries sound much more… so that’s what I’m slowly investing in. If the A3 sound is a bit much try pulling a bit of the low mids out… that will make the instrument seem smaller. It’s not always about getting new libraries… unless that Library is part of the studio series :stuck_out_tongue:

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Ah, thanks mate. I was purely looking into the Spitfire studio series, as I want a smaller ensemble that sounds more “cinematic” to me (one of my fav composers is Yuki Kajiura, and her works are BIG and epic sounding, but they’re really smaller ensembles) but then I saw this.

I’ve also been slowly getting some of the OT individual instruments as well–bassoon, harp, and thinking of getting the other solo winds (and the cool Jeff Russo Klingon choir!) I’m a bit torn between OT and just the full Spitfire studio series.


I’ve always found smaller ensembles can sound much bigger and more detailed. Especially when you are layering them with a wetter library… I think that’s the way I personally like to work as you have more detailed. Precision.

I’m in the process of upgrading the studio series I have to pro. If you can afford to get pro from the start then I suggest doing that. Also, the strings and woods are perfect… they have lovely response and the detail imo is unparalleled. However, like any library there are shortcomings… not many though. The biggest is the brass, they are very bright. In some instances you want this. Otherwise I usually roll the top end off a little when mixing them.

Finally, and this isn’t really a shortcoming… just an FYI (if anything). This series is extremely dry and detailed so you hear exactly when it’s wrong and because it’s so dry, it doesn’t sound good out of the box. I guess this is one thing some don’t like about Hollywood strings etc… there are pros and cons to this idea depending on how you like to work.

If you like to hear where you are going wrong so you can fix it easier then this is the library for you.

If you prefer quick editing that’s masks errors then this isn’t the one you’ll go for.

I’m a bit of both of these extremes… when I know I need this dry sound I go for this library as it responds extremely well. It’s a triumph in library creation in a lot of ways.

To finish… you said you wanted a woods library… I don’t have this but I really wish I had it… I’ll be getting it soon… but check out Westgate studios Woodwinds series. They are hugely detailed… expensive for the whole bundle but you buy each section/instrument separetly. The library is around 15+ years old but IMO there’s no woodwind library out there quite like it. Think they’re sold on bigfish audio. There are quite a few tutorials on YT that will let you get a feel for the sound… because it’s so old there are a LOT of nay sayers in terms of these instruments. For some reason older libraries get a bad rap and im not really sure why… I mean, imo no other woodwinds library has come close to how good it sounds, so use your ears and not your eyes when you check it out. It’s used by Pros everywhere even today :slight_smile:


From the demos I’ve heard I like the sound of it a lot. If you’re writing something where you don’t need to get granular to the point of having each string instrument doing a different thing and you can just load up a nice sounding ensemble sound, it would be really convenient.

Conversely, I just got BBCSO Core this year, which for me is a large purchase, and I think Abbey Road One sounds a little “too similar” to BBCSO to justify going in that direction. If I do another large purchase I’d like to get more variety into my palette.

Regarding BBCSO’s woodwinds. They might be my favorite part of BBCSO. I can understand if a3 is too many for what you’re going for. But it also has a solo selection for each woodwind if you don’t want a group of 3.

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Thanks Mike. That’s really the key, the woodwinds. The whole library does sound good, but I’m really just looking for woodwinds, the rest of the library would just be a plus. My reasoning for getting the whole library is just to ensure that I have woods that can nicely blend with the rest of the library, rather than trying to blend woods from one with strings and brass from another.

Christian has done a comparison video between that and albion and BBC. I’d suggest watching it. I feel a lot less sceptical after seeing it.

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I kinda feel more sceptical about Albion and BBC SO like Spitfire are going to focus on Abbey Road for the foreseeable future. The BBC announced its plan to move away from Maida Vale as its live music hub in 2018, hoping to complete the move to a building in the Stratford Waterfront development in the Olympic Park in East London. So not sure what that means for BBC SO.

According to the Christian Henderson vid they are going to move modular and focus on abbey road and the Air Lindhurst studios. I really hope they do this as at least they will be developing instead of making what they already have. Apparently BBCSO ISNT BEING DEVELOPWD NOW, just bug updates and sample updates where needed, plus a piano update in the future?


Yes looks like that, there are some additional articulations people have asked for on BBC SO Pro, but maybe no chance of getting them?

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Still not sold on it yet. Sounds really good, but it’s just ensembles? Emailed Audio Imperia the other day, wondering if the’ll extract the woodwinds from Nucleus like they did the strings (Areia) and Brass (Talos) and their response was not “if” but “when” :smile:

I’d maybe like to get ARO as a nice all-in-one but I’m leaning on the studio/chamber libraries. For now, I’ve been picking off some of the individual bits from Orchestral Tools Berlin series, which sound real nice.

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I doubt there will be many additions to the BBCSO as apparently it cost Spitfire an arm and a leg just to get all of the players together AND they have to pay royalties to the players for each purchase. So I don’t blame them for not doing too much extra with it :sweat_smile:

@MaestroX I think that sounds awesome. I was intregued with both of those releases and the thing I love the most is when libraries make their instruments more accessible to us meme mortals :stuck_out_tongue:

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As I’ve been saying for a while now, I’m really loving Areia–it’s my go to if I’m not writing an actual score with Dorico. It’s not perfect, but me not being a mixing guru, I’ve found i don’t need to do a whole lot for the newer Audio Imperia stuff to sound great.


I think the one I’m really becoming extremely fond of right now is Orchestral tools inspire. I’ve been getting it over time, piece by piece and it’s just getting better with each download.

What is so good about Areia? Do you have other dedicated strings libraries to compare it to, like Cinematic Studio Strings etc?

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Are you happy with the one mic position though? I agree that if you buy individual pieces its ok. To me BBC SO core, originals and layers is enough to not buy Inspire. I sketch in originals and layers then build out the instruments in Core.

In comparison to Spitfire, Orchestral tools and Cinematic Studios, which I own, Areia is most comparable to CSS in terms of overall sound and quality, but I find it to be a tick better as Areia contains far more articulations, contains a dedicated vibrato control, and at least has been my experience, the samples are much cleaner and easier to mix.

There’s two pre-mixed mic positions, “classic” and “modern” with the classic sounding the most like CSS, with a darker, “hall” type sound and the modern being a louder, “studio” type. Like I said, it just seems to sound better overall and mixes better with other libraries than what I’ve experienced with CSS. So for all the libraries I own, I think it’s best in its price range.

It’s more than enough. It’s one mix, not one mix position. So all layers are perfectly balanced in the stereo field… in essence it’s an overall snapshot which works very well. I can’t stress enough how conviwnient this is, especially when you use multiple libraries in the first place to build up your sound.