Gary Garritan: A Personal Orchestra for Everyone
Pages: 1, 2, 3, 4

QuickTip: Personal Garage Orchestra

Rick Schneblin, an artist using Garritan Personal Orchestra, contributed this detailed tutorial to the Garritan web site about using GPO as a software instrument within Apple GarageBand 2. It has been lightly edited.

Before launching GarageBand, create a new folder named "GPO" inside the directory Library/Application Support/GarageBand/Instrument Library/Track Settings/Software. Now open a new sequence file in GarageBand 2; you'll see the default "Grand Piano" channel (Figure 1).

Figure 1 Figure 1. Creating an instrument.

Double-click the indicated channel (1) to launch the instrument editing process, then click the Details arrow (2). I like to have global control over the "wetness" of the sound, so I deselect the default Echo and Reverb checkboxes. That will also reduce CPU usage. Click the Generator pull-down window (3), choose "Garritan Personal Orchestra," and then click the Edit button to launch the Kontakt Player (4). Next, choose the instrument for this channel--for example, French Horn Overlay 1 (Figure 2)

Figure 2 Figure 2. Choosing an instrument.

After loading the sound file into the Kontakt Player (Figure 3), apply an appropriate icon (5). I have GarageBand Jam Pack 4, so there are several orchestral instrument icons to choose from. Click the "Save Instrument" button (6) and enter an appropriate, short description (7) for your new instrument. Make sure the appropriate folder is selected or the new instrument may not be placed where you wish. (If you make a mistake, it's easy enough to change the name and location of the .cst file at the Library/Application Support/GarageBand/Instrument Library/Track Settings/Software folder.)

Figure 3 Figure 3. Saving the instrument.

With the new instrument in place (Figure 4), choose the menu item Track, then Show Master Track. Now double-click the Master Track, click the Details arrow, and then deselect Echo and Reverb to save CPU power. Where the pull-down menu reads "none," click and scroll down to "Ambience," then choose the ambience color you desire. (Ambience is the reverb plug-in that comes with GPO.)

Figure 4 Figure 4. Replacing the default reverberation with Ambience.

Once you've created and saved an instrument setting, there's no reason to call up the Kontakt Player again; just choose the instrument from your Software Instrument library in GarageBand. Another great feature in GarageBand 2 is the ability to drag and drop QuickTime MIDI files right onto the sequence window. GarageBand automatically creates the appropriate channels and sequences, and then all you have to do is choose the GPO instrument for each track you're going to use.

Garritan Personal Orchestra Instruments


String Seating
String Family
  • Solo Stradivari Violin
  • Solo Gagliano Violin
  • Solo Guarneri Violin
  • 9 Violins for Ensembles
  • 1st Violin Section (12 Players)
  • 2nd Violin Section (10 Players)
  • Solo Viola
  • 3 Violas for Ensembles
  • Viola Section (10 Players)
  • Solo Gofriller Cello
  • Solo Montagnana Cello
  • Solo Pierray Cello
  • 9 Cellos for Ensembles
  • Cello Section (8 Players)
  • Solo Double Bass
  • 3 Double Basses for Sections
  • Double Bass Section (7 Players)


Woodwind Seating
Woodwind Family
  • Piccolo
  • Solo Flute
  • 3 Flutes for Ensembles
  • Alto Flute
  • Bass Flute
  • Oboe (Two Soloists)
  • 3 Oboes for Ensembles
  • English Horn (Two Soloists)
  • Solo Bb Clarinet
  • 3 Clarinets for Ensembles
  • Eb Clarinet
  • Bass Clarinet
  • 3 Bass Clarinets for Ensembles
  • Contrabass Clarinet
  • Solo Bassoon (Two Soloists)
  • 3 Bassoons for Ensembles
  • Contrabassoon (Two Soloists)


Brass Seating
Brass Family
  • Solo Trumpet (Two Soloists)
  • 6 Trumpets for Ensembles
  • Trumpet f Overlay
  • Piccolo Trumpet
  • French Horns (Two Solo Horns)
  • 6 Horns for Ensembles
  • Horn f and ff Overlays
  • Solo Tenor Trombone
  • 3 Trombones for Ensembles
  • Trombone f Overlay
  • Bass Trombones (Two Soloists)
  • Tubas (Two Soloists)
  • Tuba Overlay
  • Solo Contrabass Tuba


Percussion Seating
Percussion Pitched
Percussion Unpitched
  • Timpani
  • Wind Machine
  • Grand Symphonic Marimba
  • Vibraphone
  • Glockenspiel
  • Xylophone
  • Tubular Bells
  • Bass Drum (adjustable fundamental)
  • Snare Drum
  • Orchestral Cymbals
  • Gong and Tam-Tam
  • Crotales
  • Triangles
  • Mark Tree
  • Cowbells
  • Hand Bells
  • Assorted Percussion Toys

Keyboards and Harps

Keyboard Family
  • Steinway Concert Grand Piano
  • Duo 1 and Duo 2 Pianos
  • Concert Pipe Organ (11 stops/pedals)
  • Harpsichord (3 stops)
  • Celeste
  • Harp 1 (Venus)
  • Harp 2 (Wurlitzer)
  • Glissando Harp Package

Music Examples

The following MP3s were created by Garritan Personal Orchestra customers. Visit to hear hundreds more.

Randy Alberts is an author, musician, and photographer who lives on Lummi Island, Washington.

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