Orb Producer Suite VS Captain Plugins
Orb producer Suite versus Captain chords. They have very similar functions they'll both teach you a little bit about music theory. Both of these do have synthesizers built-in. However, orb's synthesizer has different types of oscillators as well as wavetable synthesis, similar to Serum. A nice surprise. Instruments like this could be the same price as this entire plugin or more.
Both suites have some similar and some different types of plugins. The 4 plugins they have in Orb Producer Suite are Orb Chords, Orb Melody, Orb Bass, and Orb Arpeggios.
Captain Plugins has Captain Chords and Captain Play, Captain Melody, Captain Deep and Captain Beat. An important note, the main thing that Captain Plugins has that orb doesn't have is Captain Beat. This fairly automatically produces a rhythm track for you. If you don't have a way to make drums or find loops that you like to use then this is a great option.
On the flip side, however, Captain Plugins don't have an arpeggiator. Of course, you could just use functions in your DAW or plugins to generate arpeggios from the chords, but something Orb Arpeggios does nicely is add a human element and a feel that goes along with the rest of its composition. This technology is quite advanced.
Another unique plugin Captain Plugins offers is Captain Play. It allows you to play a rhythm on your own. Whatever rhythm you play on your keyboard MIDI or QWERTY is played back with the preselected chord progression.
Also inside of Captain Plugins is Captain Melody. It gives you a lot of control over your Melodies. But because of its clunky interface, it does take some getting used to.
Another minor gripe about Captain Plugins is that if you aren't connected to the internet, Captain Plugins won't work at all.
Both suites of plugins allow you to create chord progressions easily and drag the generated Midi to your DAW to play back on the same, or different tracks.
Orb Chords VS Captain Chords
One thing I do like about Captain chords is that the predetermined chord progressions that you pick are automatically in the key that you've chosen, but for some reason, Orb Chords' progressions are not necessarily correct in the key. So even though I pick a minor or major key, they don't necessarily follow along correctly. So, that could be a little bit confusing if you are not experienced with music theory.
Where Orb Chords pulls ahead however is the categorization of chord progressions by mood. This is a game-changer when trying to write music for a particular purpose very quickly.
Orb Bass VS Captain Deep
This is where I think hexachords outshines Captain deep. The bass lines in Orb Bass make since within the composition and can be changed easily by adjusting the complexity slider or other parameters in the orb section (unique to orb plugins) to easily adjust the timing or feel of the track. Meanwhile, adjusting bass lines in Captain Deep is very limiting, forcing you to select predefined rhythms that may or may not go along with your composition.
Orb Melody VS Captain Melody
When you load Orb Melody, it automatically generates a melody for you that fits your composition. You can use the same orb parameters to adjust the melody or hit the orb button to generate new melodies instantly. These melodies tend to be a little busy so dragging the MIDI out of the plugin and adjusting manually will often be the solution to getting your melodies sounding just right.
For some reason, Captain Melody's interface completely changes to that of the other plugins. To create a melody you have to drag around something called an idea box and adjust parameters in a completely different way than the other Captain Plugins. The learning curve is steeper than Orb Melody, but the amount of control and fine-tuning ability is not matched.
Orb Arpeggios VS Captain Beat?
Ok, so this isn't a fair comparison because these two plugins are not doing the same thing at all, but they are unique to each plugin suite.
Like I said earlier, Orb Arpeggios generate arpeggios with a more human feel that always seems to go along with the composition. I'm always delighted when hitting the orb reset button and something I wouldn't have thought to create with a traditional arpeggiator plugin pops out.
Captain Beat is Captain Plugins' rhythm producer and it does easily generate useable drum tracks in literally seconds. You can quickly select different styles and kits then export the sounds to be edited on separate tracks. If you don't have, or know a way to produce modern drum sounds then this plugin is for you.
Orb Suite creates multiple parts the fastest. The way they all sync together and make sense musically is incredible. If time is something you treasure, then this suite is for you. Get the Orb Producer Suite here.
Captain Plugins can generate chords and parts as well. In my experience, the built-in sounds are unusable so you'll need to use external instruments to produce with Captain Plugins (The ability to launch external instruments within Captain Plugins is a unique feature and helps to bridge this gap). Also, Captain Beat wins hands down for generating rhythms as there is no drum plugin in the Orb Producer Suite.
A gripe about Captain Plugins is that the built-in rhythms are a bit static and lend themselves mostly to EDM while Orb's rhythms seem to work with whatever type of music I'm producing. You can get Captain Plugins here
Based on sound quality, speed, and workflow, I find myself using the Orb Suite more often than not. Occasionally I use Captain Beat in conjunction with the Orb Producer Suite.
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