Gu Zheng traditional Chinese instrument library review


Hey what’s up yall, back again with another gem from

This instrument is a collaboration between Best Service and Yellow River Sounds.

You know I’m a fan of ethnic/world instruments and I really wanted to show you this one.

This is the Gu Zheng…a traditional plucked Chinese instrument

So let’s check it out

So what is the Gu Zheng virtual instrument?

Basically this is a very detailed and meticulously sampled Gu Zheng.

The thing that is awesome about this is that it was sampled by local Chinese musicians, who actually know what the instrument should sound/feel like.

While there are many world and ethnic libraries around, and some of them definitely sound good, I can’t find many that go into great detail to get one instrument absolutely perfect.

This one runs on the ENGINE sample player from Best Service so you don’t need a sampler to play it, as it comes with it’s own.

Quick Specs

  • content: 1.6gb
  • format: Best Service ENGINE
  • price: $125

How does it sound?

This thing sounds amazing! And it’s very fun to play, which is important.

I find that it’s very expressive just from playing it naturally without having to trigger a bunch of keyswitches manually.

Most of the samples are one shots…meaning, the samples aren’t looped so you get the authentic decay of the strings when plucked.

I like instruments like this, the kind that respond dynamically to my playing and sound realistic when doing so.

There isn’t much variety here, of course, as it’s dedicated to one instrument.

But in my opinion that doesn’t matter because they cover all the articulations of the instrument from sustains and vibratos, to tremelos and bends.

And again…this thing is FUN to play

There is also a patch dedicated to authentic phrases…I really love those as they allow you to not only get an idea of how the instrument is played, but they are useful to throw into your music as is!

So what is the bottom line?

I think this is an awesome product, I am really looking forward to more from these producers as I haven’t come across an ethnic instrument that has such a “real” sound to it before.

Again, what really amazes me is that I can play it, and it sound real! That’s a great sign of detailed programing and playability because I have absolutely no idea how to play a Gu Zheng, but no matter what I hit it just feels and sounds right.

I also love how simple and clean the interface is, though I wish there was an additional knob that lets you adjust the ambient noise quickly, no big thing but it would be nice for sure. I also love how easy it is to add fx in the ENGINE interface.

I give this library 4.5 out of 5 I really enjoy playing it, I love the tone and feel of it.

You can definitely get some realistic Chinese phrases out of this instrument and it can fit into almost any genre of music or scoring that requires some realistic ethnic spice.

With an instrument this detailed I was surprised they priced it as low as they did, but I won’t complain!  I’m glad they went to the source to get such a traditional instrument sampled correctly, I will definitely be keeping my eyes open for more from these producers.

Can you imagine a traditional Chinese wind instrument from them? I can…and I’m drooling at the thought right now!

Head on over to soundsonline and checkout the demos, all midi performances that are triggering the Gu Zheng instrument:

leave me a comment below and let me know what you think


  1. Love these sounds. That’s over twice the cost it needs to be tho – I buy these Chinese sounds from another source and this instrument over there is every bit as good and only $60!

    Great instrument. Not so great price.

    • @Jon, I hear ya man, I guess price is subjective, I mess with a lot of these different sounds as well, and even though many sound close to similar, sometimes there’s an edge in one over the other, not dependent on price of course, but all are not created equal. As with anything, it’s going to be a personal matter, I just love ethinic sounds and I’ve found good ones that cost a lot and good one’s that cost 10 bucks lol, it’s all about the sound in the end to me. I have some Kontakt library one’s that are pretty good, cost less, but don’t quite have the edge that this one does.

      Now I’m interested in checking out the one’s you’re speaking of…wonder if I have them already? lol.

      • @saintjoe, yeah I definitely hear ya on that but the Kong Audio versions of these instruments are dope – I’d be interested in a comparison review if you have that version as well 🙂

        • @Jon, OK, I just checked some more and I do have to concede that this version has a lot more data so I guess there must be an edge there somewhere, but I still honestly think my $60 version does everything it needs to 🙂

          But hey, that’s just an opinion. Maybe if I had that one in front of me I could assess it more acurately, but I still think I’d rather have that and say the Hulusi from Kong Audiom instead of just this one.

          • @Jon, yo it’s all good man lol, I feel ya, my ultimate outlook is, if you like it, it don’t matter…sometimes the minor details can be minor depending on what you’re doing. I’ve seen Kong Audio but haven’t used it, their demos sound amazing though so I think they would be another great option.

  2. everythingbutthegirl · Edit

    Hey Joe

    I love the authentic sounds this instrument is producing. It sounds so cool. But the price is pretty heavy. I look before to what other instruments they may bring out later.

  3. Great sounds and great instrument man….HEY! I was thinking you would come out with an underground album called sifu saint joe and the deadly maschine vs the widow maker.

  4. Nice sound. Ethnic instruments are not cheap, neither libraries. I think it’s a little overpriced, since there’s cheaper choices. However, for certain dates (Christmas, for example) yellow tools do some special offers. So you should be pending their site time to time, since you can get a good deal.

    • @Angelinni, thanks for the response, I guess price is subjective, for the quality and sound I think it’s pretty cheap, but there are options out there, that’s what’s good about this industry 🙂


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