Arturia V Collection 8 Review

arturia v collection 8 review - decibel peak

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Are you looking for the ULTIMATE collection of legendary keyboards and synths?

If so, then I think you’ll enjoy this Arturia V Collection 8 review. I discovered Arturia V Collection during its 6th installment and haven’t looked back!

So, what is it that makes V Collection so special?

It’s all in the analog/physical modelling technologies Arturia has developed (TAE/Phi).

In other words, the instruments in V Collection are emulations of the real thing. Most of the software instruments on the market are simply sample libraries.

That’s why Arturia V Collection is so incredibly realistic…

I’ll be providing some demonstrations throughout and I’ll also be comparing the V Collection to other popular keyboard/synth VST plugins.

Regardless of what you prefer, I know you’ll find something to resonate with today!

What’s new in the Arturia V Collection

Let’s start off with a little history lesson…

Each installment of Arturia V Collection has added some massive value to the collection. Just when you thought they’d done it all, you find yourself reaching for your wallet again!

V Collection 8

  • JUN-6 V (Roland Juno-series)
  • OB-Xa V (Oberheim OB-Xa)
  • Emulator II V (E-mu Emulator II)
  • B3 V2 (Hammond B3)
  • Vocoder V
  • Analog Lab V

V Collection 7

  • Mellotron V
  • CZ V (Casio CZ)
  • Synthi V (EMS Synthi-series)
  • Analog Lab 4

V Collection 6

  • Buchla Easel V (Buchla Music Easel)
  • Clavinet V (Hohner Clavinet)
  • DX7 V (Yamaha DX7)
  • CMI V (Fairlight CMI)
  • Analog Lab 3

What I like about the Arturia V Collection 8

Out of all the plugins I own, Arturia V Collection is definitely my favourite!

It’s only been getting better with each installment, but its revolutionary analog/physical modelling technology has always been on point.

b3 v2

So, why don’t we start with that?

The “secret ingredients” to V Collection are True Analog Emulation (TAE) and Phi.

As I already said, you’re not working with sampled instruments here. Each sound you make with the keyboards/synths in the V Collection are 100% accurate emulations of the original.

It might require more CPU power (instead of HDD/SSD speed), but the results are worth it!

Actually, I’ve still managed to run V Collection on some pretty outdated machines!

You’ll even save some time and resources by using Analog Lab. It’s basically a massive software instrument and search engine that includes all 28 instruments in V Collection.

Instead of loading each different instrument, you have them all-in-one (including the presets).

This is probably one of my favourite features of V Collection…

It makes it effortless to find the sound(s) I’m looking for without digging into dozens (if not HUNDREDS) of software instruments. The search engine is also well-designed.

However, I usually use this as a starting point and then proceed to load the instrument as its own software instrument. You’ll have much more flexibility that way.

That’s because each instrument in V Collection is truly unique.

It’s also really easy to assign different parameters to your USB/MIDI controller.

Personally, I feel like the M-Audio Hammer 88 really compliments V Collection best because it’s one of the few USB/MIDI keyboard controllers that have an expression pedal input.

That being said, you’ll definitely get the most out of Clavinet V and B3 V with one of those!

So yeh, I could keep talking forever about how cool V Collection is…

Now, let’s talk about some of the things I DON’T like!

What I don’t like about the Arturia V Collection 8

I’m warning you… I’m a pretty huge fan of Arturia V Collection.

That being said, there isn’t much that I have to complain about. BUT, there is definitely one thing that bothered me when I switched computers.

piano v2

Going back to Analog Lab, it’s just missing ONE thing that would make it perfect…

CLOUD-SYNCING!!

In other words, the ability to sync presets and playlists (of presets) to your Arturia account. It would make it much easier when switching computers.

Of course, you can manually export your presets and playlists.

However, it would clearly be better if Arturia could make it easier for all of us. Right?

It might not be a big deal for everybody, but I like to create playlists of presets.

It makes it much easier to find sounds quickly when composing/producing.

That’s pretty much it though…

It’s also kind of annoying that Arturia always manages to add something I never knew I needed in each installment of V Collection, but that’s just part of doing good business!

V Collection isn’t perfect, but it’s consistently getting better so that’s a great sign!

Arturia V Collection 8 vs Spectrasonics Keyscape

Alright, let’s compare Arturia V Collection to perhaps the next best-selling collection of keyboards on the market… Keyscape by Spectrasonics.

Right from the start, Keyscape only includes keyboards (no synths, samplers, etc…).

However, it does include some keyboard instruments that V Collection DOESN’T!!

  • Electric Grand CP-70
  • Pianet M, Pianet N & Pianet T
  • Weltmeister Claviset
  • Weltmeister Basset 1 & Basset 2
  • Vintage Vibe Electric Piano
  • Vintage Vibe Tine Bass
  • Rhodes Piano Bass
  • Rhodes 1943 Pre-Piano
  • Electric Harpsichord
  • Celeste
  • Chimeatron
  • Dulcitone
  • Clavichord
  • Dolceola
  • Harmochord
  • Toy Piano

That’s a lot of rare keyboard instruments (some that I’ve never heard of too).

If you want to compare V Collection 8 with Keyscape side-by-side, here’s a table…

Arturia V Collection 8Spectrasonics Keyscape
TechnologyTAE/Phi analog/physical modellingMultisample-based
# of Instruments2836
# of Presets10,000+500+
Preset Layering*YES**YES
Integrated FXYESYES
MIDI MappingYESYES
Features– Sound Store
– AI Preset Finder
– Omnisphere Integration
– STEAM Engine
*Ability to layer 2 instruments with “Multi” sounds
**Ability to combine 2 presets together using Hybrid “Duo”

Just keep in mind that Keyscape is a SAMPLED software instrument which means you’ll need much more storage space and faster HDD and/or SSD drives.

In regards to sound quality, it sounds just as good as V Collection.

I just think that V Collection “feels” more real to me. What do you think?

Arturia V Collection 8 vs Spectrasonics Omnisphere

Now, you’re not going to find vintage synths in Omnisphere by Spectrasonics.

That being said, Arturia V Collection is focused on emulating the sound of classic synthesizers while Omnisphere is designed to explore endless possibilities.

It’ll be much more interesting to sound designers in my opinion!

That’s mostly because of Omnisphere’s state-of-the-art features…

  • Ability to layer up to 4 different patches
  • Ability to use up to 20 oscillators per patch
  • “Sound Match” matches your current preset with other similar ones
  • “Sound Lock” locks parameters of your preset while loading in new ones

That’s pretty impressive and there’s MUCH more than that.

Here, take a look at V Collection 8 and Omnisphere 2.8 side-by-side…

Arturia V Collection 8Spectrasonics Omnisphere 2.8
TechnologyTAE/Phi analog/physical modellingMultisample-based/DSP-based
# of Instruments281
# of Presets10,000+14,000+
Preset Layering*YES**YES
Integrated FXYESYES
MIDI MappingYESYES
Features– Sound Store
– AI Preset Finder
– Sound Match
– Sound Lock
*Ability to layer 2 instruments with “Multi” sounds
**Ability to layer up to 4 presets

The cool thing about Omnisphere is that it can be both sample-based or DSP-based in regards to oscillators. That’s what makes it so powerful.

You can even load your own audio files to use as source material.

The possibilities are endless with Omnisphere, but let’s not forget our roots with V Collection!

Arturia V Collection 8: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How many gigabytes (GB) is Arturia V Collection?

You’ll only need about 8.5 GB to install Arturia V Collection 8.

How many computers can you install Arturia V Collection on?

You can install and activate V Collection in up to 5 computers using Arturia Software Center.

How many instruments does Arturia V Collection 8 include?

V Collection 8 includes 28 software instruments including analog synths, digital synths/samplers, electric pianos, electric organs and MORE!!

Does Arturia V Collection 8 include Pigments?

NO. Pigments isn’t part of V Collection, so you’ll need to purchase it separately.

Summary: Arturia V Collection 8 Review

If you ask me, I’d find a way to get myself ALL of these software instruments!

However, it’ll be much easier to afford Arturia V Collection 8 if you rent-to-own using Splice.

I also think you’ll be much better off with V Collection.

Keyscape and Omnisphere are much more advanced and require better hardware.

That being said, V Collection is a much better “all-in-one solution” if you want to keep your music production simple and minimalistic. It really has everything I need!

The best part… It doesn’t need as many resources to run.

You just need a decent CPU and you’ll be fine. I was using it on a 2013 iMac back in the day!

I don’t know how Arturia did it, but their TAE/Phi analog/physical modelling technologies aren’t just state-of-the-art, they’re also efficient.

That’s a RARE combo!

So, I’m curious… What do you think about Arturia V Collection 8?

Let us know in the comments and feel free to ask me any questions there as well.

Sources

https://www.arturia.com/products/analog-classics/v-collection

https://www.spectrasonics.net/products/keyscape/

https://www.spectrasonics.net/products/omnisphere/

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