EastWest (http://www.soundsonline.com) has announced an update for
its Quantum Leap SD virtual software instrument at this week’s
National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) show. The company has
also introduced Play 2.0, an update of software that programs the
EastWest virtual instrument collections.

Quantum Leap SD2 offers a combination of new percussion sounds and a
collection of the “best of sounds” from the SD1 package, according to
producer Nick Phoenix. The update delivers 2.5GB of percussive sounds
featuring a variety of strike and brush solos and ensemble recordings.

New solo instruments include the mridangam, a two-headed Indian drum
capable of dozens of tones like tablas, but with a different harmonic
structure, played by a lifetime mridangam master. Following in the
tradition of the brushed percussion from SD2, 10 new sampled drums
played with a variety of brushed techniques enhance this sonic
pallet, Phoenix says. The Indian stringed percussion instrument, the
Khamak, offers a truly wild sound, while the Daf, a Persian hand
drum, offers beautiful high-pitched drum sounds, he adds. There’s
also a “tour” of China through the samples of beautiful sounding
Chinese toms in sets of four, various new Chinese gongs and cymbals
played with many techniques, and Chinese blocks.

SD2 delivers MIDI performances created with Roland V-Drums and
Zendrum percussion controllers. This allows the user to change
anything, with purportedly no effect to sound quality. MIDI
performances are pre-mixed, panned and produced for quick use.
Pricing hasn’t been announced.

Meanwhile, Play 2.0 adds editing capabilities. “When we originally
designed PLAY, it was intended to offer a powerful but easy-to-use
interface for users to playback the included sounds,” says EASTWEST
Founder and Producer Doug Rogers. “Now with Play 2.0, musicians who
like to customize our virtual instruments will have the same software
tools we use when we create the virtual instruments.”