Pc Sound Module

The main advantage of using a PC for audio is that it can handle very large samples, especially if you have multiple gigs of RAM. There are two main routes for this:

Use a stand alone software instrument.

These typically have a nice GUI that makes it easy to vary the parameters of the sound. They don't rely on any other software to work, but they usually cost $200-$300. A couple examples:

  • Native Instruments Akoustik Piano
  • Synthogy Ivory Grand

Use a sample library with a software sampler

Sample libraries are just a folder full of sound files with another file specifying how they should be used to produce music. A software sampler is required to play back these files in a useful manner. Some examples of software samplers:

  • Apple's Garage Band (free with some macs), Logic Express, and Logic use the EXS24 format
  • Gigastudio (Gigasonic)
  • Halion
  • Native Instruments Kontakt
  • [ The Linux Sampler] uses Gigasonic files

Some keyboard sample libraries that might be of interest to DIYers:

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