Vienna Symphonic Library Vienna Suite review

  • £425
The Vienna Suite offers superb precision tools and stunning reverbs.

MusicRadar Verdict

A superb collection of high quality audio tools and two reverbs at a price you can afford.


  • +

    Fantastic set of plug-ins that will work with any type of music.


  • -

    Not much.

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Vienna Symphonic has a well-deserved reputation for the highest level of quality in all things Orchestral. Be it incredible sample collections or high-end MIR workstations, its creative solutions to complex technical issues and attention to detail are second to none.

It's no surprise that Vienna has brought out its own set of plug-ins to compliment its sample collections. This version adds a new Hybrid reverb, combining Convolution and Algorithm generated reverbs.

"There are plenty of source IRs, from small rooms to cathedrals."

It's all in the detail

Vienna Suite has been around for a while now. As you'd expect from a set of tools designed with orchestral music in mind, it sounds clean and transparent.

We're particularly fond of the Master Equaliser. With five parametric bands plus high and low shelves and filters, there's no end to the detail you can go into, and it sounds beautiful.

The compressor and limiter are capable of quite extreme settings without mangling the sound, and as you would expect they work well on acoustic instruments of all types, particularly tricky compression candidates such as acoustic guitars and basses.

That said, they are equally at home in the electronic sphere, where they can add a classier sheen to a purely synthetic track.

Exciters can sound overly harsh - not so, this one. Smooth highs and no real nasty artefacts make this a real saviour for a lifeless sound.

More than just space

As engineers often enhance the natural acoustics of a room with digital reverbs, the Hybrid is a sensible way to have this "best of both worlds" approach in one simple unit - simple because if what is going on in this plug is hideously complicated (and it is), VSL have presented it in a way that's very easy to understand and manipulate.

There are two pages, browse and edit. In browse you can look through the excellent and extremely comprehensive set of user presets.

The seven sections have plenty of choices within each. Every preset has a description which gives you a good idea of what it sounds like and even how to treat it.

On the same page you can adjust levels of dry and wet signals, and the balance between the Early (IR) and Tail (algorithm) parts of the reverb. There's also individual adjustment of stereo width for both components.

The edit page gives you separate pre-delay, length, filtering and EQ control for the Early and Tail components, plus you have control of density and modulation for the algorithmic element. What you get is fabulous spatial reverbs with great control over the whole shape and colour.

There are plenty of source IRs, from small rooms to cathedrals and the combination of these with the excellent algorithmic section means you can go from small spaces to completely unnatural but usable reverbs easily.

A bargain?

Vienna Suite is a great sounding collection of precision audio tools that work with any style of music. Add in the Hybrid and Convolution Reverbs and this package has to be seen as a bargain.

You could pay a similar amount for just a convolution reverb without any of the rest. Highly recommended.