Heavyocity – VENTO Modern Woodwinds,

Heavyocity – VENTO Modern Woodwinds,

KK-Access Review

Heavyocity have now released their third installment into the world of hybrid orchestral libraries, and this time around the Woodwind section is the subject for the New York based masters of cinematic sound design. In the last decade they have arguably redefined the sample library market with a unique genre signature sound that has set the standard for others to follow, so how will Woodwinds fare when put through the Heavyocity hit machine?… read on!


I have been expecting Heavyocity to bring out a Woodwind library for a little while now, to be honest once they had released Forzo brass as a follow up to Novo strings, then it did not really take the sleuthful brain of Sherlock Holmes, or even the predictions of Nostradamus to work out the path ahead, but I was eager to discover just what they would make of the orchestral Woodwind section, which on the surface to my mind at least does not immediately lend itself to the realms of hybrid mangling, of course I have now happily been proven wrong, and the results are an extremely atmospheric product that can easily stand on it’s own feet when it comes to that distinct widescreen soundtrack style of music.

Tech Specs…

The library will require either the full version of Kontakt or Kontakt player version 6.1.1 or above, and runs within Komplete Kontrol being NKS ready.

The samples when uncompressed stack up to over 27Gb of content, but with lossless NCW compression are pulled down to 17Gb of required disk space.

With over 11,000 samples making up the content, there are 7 master NKI instrument files, with a further 285 snapshots providing the Komplete Kontrol presets, which feature 163 articulations.

There are essentially three categories of instruments, Traditional which feature the more standard and realistic sounding Contra Bass , contrabassoons , Clarinets, piccolos, , flutes, and piccolo samples.

The Woodwind Designer enables more in depth sound manipulation, whilst the Woodwind Loop Designer is similarly used to edit and tweak the loop content found within the library.

Download & Installation…

The Heavyocity software application portal is used to initially register and make your product available for download from the Heavyocity servers after logging into your account and pasting in your authorisation code. The application is reasonably accessible on MAC, but less so on Windows, although I could OCR the screen and get some speech feedback, I did require sighted help to complete the installation process, which was a standard procedure of choosing a location and letting the software do it’s thing.

The final step is to use the same serial to authorise Vento within Native Access, again choosing the folder location to do so, and finally rescanning Komplete Kontrol in standalone completes the process making it ready to use.

Komplete Kontrol Browser & Plug-in Edit Sections…


Knob 1 & 2 – Vendor & Product

Knob 3 – Bank: 1 Clarinets, 1 Woodwind Designer, 2 Flutes, 2 Woodwind Designer, 2 Woodwind Loop Designer, 3 High Ensemble, 4 Low Ensemble, 5 Contrabass Ensemble

Knob 4 – Sub Banks: Core, Extended, FX, Rips, Organic, Ambient, FX & Textures, Rhythmic, Loop Combos, Straight, Straight Reverse, Triplet, Triplet Reverse, Performance

Knob 5 – Type: Reed Instruments, Flute, Synth Misc

Knob 6 – Sub Type: Clarinet, Bassoon, Wind Ensemble, Melodic Sequences, Other Sequences

Knob 7 – Character: Sample Based, ARPEGGIATED, Processed, Tempo Synced

Knob 8 – Presets

Plug-in Edit Section

Core Preset NKS Layout

Page One – Dynamics, Delay & Reverb

Knob 1 – dynamics

Knob 2 – Delay On/Off

Knob 3 – Time

Knob 4 – Feedback

Knob 5 – Amount

Knob 6 – Reverb On/Off

Knob 7 – Size

Knob 8 – Mix

Page Two – Mixer

Knob 1 – Full Volume

Knob 2 – Full Pan

Knob 3 – Close Volume

Knob 4 – Close Pan

Knob 5 – Room Volume

Knob 6 – Room Pan

Knob 7 – Hall Volume

Knob 8 – Hall Pan

Page Three – Gate & Dynamic Modulation

Knob 1 – Gate On/Off

Knob 2 – Rate

Knob 3 – Smooth

Knob 4 – Range

Knob 5 – Dynamic Modulation On/Off

Knob 6 – Rate

Knob 7 – Range

Knob 8 – Unallocated

Woodwind Designer NKS Mapping

Page One – Macro Control & Modulation

Knob 1 – Macro Knob

Knob 2 to 4 – Unallocated

Knob 5 – Modulation On/Off

Knob 6 – Rate

Knob 7 – Amount

Knob 8 – Unallocated

Page Two – Punish & Twist

Knob 1 – Punish On/Off

Knob 2 – Amount

Knob 3 & 4 – Unallocated

Knob 5 – Twist On/Off

Knob 6 – Twist

Knob 7 – Tone

Knob 8 – Rate

Page Three – Filter & Distortion

Knob 1 – Filter On/Off

Knob 2 – Cut-Off

Knob 3 – Resonance

Knob 4 – Unallocated

Knob 5 – Distortion On/Off

Knob 6 – Drive

Knob 7 – Tone

Knob 8 – Unallocated

Page Four – Chorus & Delay

Knob 1 – Chorus On/Off

Knob 2 – Rate

Knob 3 – Depth

Knob 4 – Amount

Knob 5 – Delay On/Off

Knob 6 – Time

Knob 7 – Feedback

Knob 8 – Amount

Page Five – Reverb, Voice & Glide

Knob 1 – Reverb On/Off

Knob 2 – Pre-Delay

Knob 3 – Size

Knob 4 – Mix

Knob 5 – Unallocated

Knob 6 – Voice Mode

Knob 7 – Glide On/Off

Knob 8 – Time

Page Six – Channel 1 & Channel 2

Knob 1 – Channel 1 Volume

Knob 2 – Pan

Knob 3 – Tune

Knob 4 – Unallocated

Knob 5 – Channel 2 Volume

Knob 6 – Pan

Knob 7 – Tune

Knob 8 – Unallocated

Page Seven – Channel 3

Knob 1 – Channel 3 Volume

Knob 2 – Pan

Knob 3 – Tune

Knob 4 to 8 – Unallocated

Woodwind Loop Designer NKS Mapping

The mapped parameters for the loop designer are almost identical to that of the Woodwind designer except that they have been spread over six rather than seven pages, so listing them here would merely add to the word count of the review and serve no real informative benefit to the reader.


I resisted the temptation to cut & paste my comments on accessibility for Heavyocity libraries from previous reviews, suffice to say that there is certainly much more goodies available for sighted users who are able to access the visual GUI with traditional mouse clicks.

I did load Vento directly into Kontakt to check if there were any more parameters available via my DAW parameter list view, something I have now gotten into the habit of doing for all of my reviews, however in this case there were no more controls exposed using this method than were pre-mapped for NKS within Komplete Kontrol, but it was worth a try!

Return readers will know that I always stress with Heavyocity libraries that whilst the NKS mapping may lack the desired full implementation of some features, by and large the important stuff is all present, and what is lacking in for example extensive effect manipulation, can by and large be compensated for by turning off reverb and delay, and then adding your own more detailed control in an additional Komplete Kontrol FX slot.

Furthermore as I have frequently said, Heavyocity do provide a great and generous selection of presets which allow us to explore the real meat and potatoes of what the library has to offer.

Vento In use…

As you may have noted from the tech specs description, Vento does offer a selection of more traditional style instruments that cover Clarinets, Flutes, Low Ensemble and High Ensembles. These each come in four different preset flavours, close, Default, full Mix and Wet. We are able to alter the microphone volume and pan for each of these variants globally for the overall combined microphone mix, close, room and hall microphones respectively, but it’s nice to have the presets already set up and available should we want to quickly load one of these mix templates.

We can turn the delay or reverb on or off for each of the microphone settings, which is always a good thing to have under our control, the close mic is very dry, whilst room and hall obviously being less so.

The hall to my ears sounds a little artificial, or at least unnatural, and I suspect the reverb is perhaps being provided by an on board reverb impulse rather than the original natural hall space.

Blending all three microphones seemed to yield the best results for me, but this all depends on the kind of sound you are going for, and given the nature of the library flexibility is readily obtainable.

Each of these core traditional presets have keyswitch driven articulations pre-assigned at either end of the octave ranges, so those with less than a 61 note Komplete Kontrol keyboard will at least be able to get to these without too much octave switch bashing, or the inducement of repetitive strain injury!

Vento Articulations…

On the topic of articulations there are the standard yet essential sustain, staccato,soft sustain, Rips and FX among the variations available.

taking the ‘Rips’ as an example, they do provide the option for the trill to be played either chromatically upward ending on a high note, or you’ve guessed it, downward finishing on a lower note, there are also variations in the lengthth of the Rip.

Dynamic volume is sensibly assigned to CC01 the modwheel, so that subtle fade in performances are easily achievable.

Evolve Instruments…

Naturally for longterm Heavyocity fans, it is undoubtedly the sound designed content of their libraries which is likely to be the most seductive element to prospective owners. These are referred to as evolved content, and have been derived and created by manipulation of the controls found in either the Woodwind designer or Woodwind Loop designer presets.

As ever in a Heavyocity product, the extensive proliferation of supplied presets cover the full gamut of sounds the library is sonically capable of.

The low growls from the Contrabass right up to the shrills of the piccolo are put to excellent use, the obvious choice being for horror scores, but the various Woodwind sections are also great for inducing less obviously scary sounds, with creepy suspenseful tensions aplenty.

There is more than a passing nod to soundtracks reminiscent of Hitchcok movies, and the Rod Serling Twilight Zone TV & Radio series, indeed there are preset names that pay obvious homage to this.

There is a definite sense of something creepy and menacing lurking within the shadows going on within many of these presets, so suspense, thriller, horror, action is generally the order of the day as opposed to a lighthearted romcom!

Looping the Loop, Staying In Sync…

Keeping with tradition, there is a good selection of Arpeggiated, sequenced and tempo synced loop based material to be found within Vento, around 400 individual phrases in fact! Some presets assign multiple loops over several octaves of the keyboard which can then be pitch controlled from a lower octave, and this is great for compiling and constructing tracks either in their entirety or more modestly just as an underscore element.

These come in 4/4 and 3/4 timings, so for those yearning something more exotic will have to live with this I’m afraid, for sighted users this may well be something that is editable within the loop editor.

Old Favourites…

For those who missed the presence of the familiar Punish & Twist FX in recent releases such as Ascend Modern Grand, they will be pleased to find it back in place as part of Vento.

Heavyocity no longer seem to implement the assigned FX keyswitches that were once found in earlier releases which some users were a fan of, which provided a handful of stutter and glitch effects.

We do get delay, reverb, chorus, filter and gate effects which can add some variation for us in terms of basic sound design to personalise the included presets.

Thoughts & Conclusions…

The Heavyocity sound design team have I think, again pulled a winning formula of playability and pure atmospheric presence out of their hat. Any reservations I may have held about the suitability of the Woodwind section not lending itself to Heavyocity’s magic sound wand have been summarily dismissed with an ample collection of presets conspiring to prove me wrong!.

Vento may not prove to be the first choice for composers seeking to add completely realistic Woodwinds to their scores, but this is by no means a criticism, it’s all about the right tool for the job, and Vento squarely has an upfront glossy cinematic edge that suits the needs of film, game and media composers.

From bleak and dystopian landscapes to utopian paradise, Vento is perfectly capable of holding it’s own in the centre stage of a music track or film cue, solo or alongside other instruments it can evoke both dark and light, but generally I feel it is happier when residing in the musical shadows!

Vento is available for purchase from the Heavyocity website at an introductory price of $349.00 until November 17th (usual price is $449.00), in addition existing Novo or Forzo owners can get an extra $50.00 discount.

Heavyocity Vento Product Page:


Vento Content Walkthrough:


Vento Demo:


Vento Preset Selection:


Vento user Manual:


(c) Chris Ankin


November 7th, 2019


The author accepts no responsibility for subsequent purchase decisions made as a result of this article,or Any inaccuracies found within this review. All opinions or product functions stated are based soly on information perceived as a blind user whilst using the product or gathered from official factual sources on the web or product manual.

About the Author

Chris Ankin has worked previously as a freelance review contributor with articles published in Sound On Sound, Home & Studio Recording and ST Format Magazines.

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