Crashes of SampleTank 4

Hi all,

I’d like to share my recent experience with crashing SampleTank 4 in Cantabile
I’m using since about 1 year SampleTank 4, bought in the Summer sales last year :slight_smile:
I did use it in some previous projects and had relatively more crashes with it than with e.g. Kontakt player, however normally only during setting up a setlist and not during performance. This changed with my most recent project that is using SampleTank more intensively, with SampleTank and Syntronic instruments. I just created 1 SampleTank rack with virtual links to open it multiple times in 1 song. Typically I try to make an unique coupling between a virtual link and an instrument, which makes it easier to switch quickly between instrument as I can pre-load the instrument one of the instances.

I did read the topic of bgober on duplicate paths, SampleTank 4 C4 Still an Issue, which I actually had as well. I took out those duplicate paths by moving the Syntronic directories on the same level as SampleTank and Sampletron. That improved the situation, however I still had some systematic crashes at some song changes, the impression was when changing from Sampletank to Syntronic instrument. Meanwhile I found out as well that sampletank badly crashes if there is some mistake in the filename. To understand things better I looked into the presets and I did see that they are called with a relative link:

Instruments\SampleTank 4 MAX\Instruments\Acoustic Pianos\My Preset.st4i

So, I guess that this part is not changed correctly when changing from SampleTank to Syntronic and thus changing this

Now I separated the SampleTank and Syntronic instruments. No crashes up to now, fingers crossed!

As it costed me my Sunday to find this out, I thought it might me useful information to share.



I was having similar issies with Miroslav. I think it’s the same basic engine for sample tank and syntronik. I eventully walked away from Miroslav. I’m gradually replacing anything I had been using in syntronik or sample tank.

I am almost ready to completely uninstall them. Which is not completely stragtforward with IK. I’m still kind of pissed at them from day one where they used up way too much of my drive space. No control of what goes in. All or nothing. And then manually clean out what you don’t want.

Definitely a love/hate relaionship with IK. I absolutely love B-3X, modo bass, and modo drums. But those are completely separate from their sampled instruments.

I’m actually moving the other way, even just do get some experience with the instrument. It is absolutely a struggle to get it working smoothly and it is 25% my instrument SSD. Still there is so much in the collection that you can find a suitable sound for almost any situation. Unless you need really a high quality sound, then you’d better go to some dedicated vst.
I would think that it maybe possible to find a solution to this naming issue, something for @brad ?
And yes, quite sure Miroslav, SampleTank and Syntronic have the same engine,


No doubt it has plenty of decent sounds. I would probably have continued with Miroslav if I wasn"t having problems. But since then I have splurged for SWAM. It is way better than Miroslav for your basic strings, brass, and woodwinds. Of course, Miroslav has lots of other spunds.

As far as Syntronik It sounds good. But, for me, the whole concept of a bunch of samples of synths buried in UIs that sort of resemble the originals is just not for me. I am definitely an Arturia fan boy for classic synths. With a few from Cherry that Arturia doesn’t cover.

As far Sample tank. Yeah, there is a ton of stuff there. Also a ton of stuff in Komplete 13 ultimate. So mich stuff that I will probably never get through it sll. Kontakt is much easier to use and manage disk space, so that has become my go to.

Just my opinion. YMMV. Ain’t it great that we have all these options available?

Yes. IK uses the same engine for all of its sample-based instruments, except (maybe) for Pianoverse, which is even worse.

I haven’t paid any attention to pianoverse other than shaking my head about the need for yet another sampled piano. Isn’t there something unique they could be working on?

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Very good sounding, but with a lot of issues (crackling, hiss…) and cpu hog.
IK is disapponting me.

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B-3X and modo bass/drums show me they are capable of great things. But, yeah, some overall disappointment.

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I forgot to mention IK’s effects. Amplitube is my go to for fake guitar. I’m not really a studio guy, but T-RackS also seems like good stuff.

I actually do not use it regularly for orchestral sounds. My strings go-to are Session Strings and Steinberg Ionica Ensemble, where Session Strings is somewhat nicer but also more CPU hungry. Recently I used the Miroslav Timpana, quiet nice I would say.
Also for piano it is not my standard (that is Vienna Imperial Grand, for which I also seem to be quiet alone,…). The sampletank Yamaha C7 is really nice in my opinion and you can give that a bit more bite in the attack. I also use the Yamaha CP70.
I just had a look where all that bytes go to in Syntronic. 35 GB on the Yamaha GS-V, and that is quiet nice as well.
For synths it is just easy to pick some sound that is close enough. In case needed there is a pletora of synths to choose from and make something more specific. First choice for me is still Vital, although development of that one seems to be stopped. Otherwise Surge, Loom and maybe I should revisit something like Retrologue for retro-sounds.
Still I would hope that the directory name issue would be solved,…
cheers, Joop

I think this is outside the scope of Cantabile.

I’ve found SampleTank 4 to be both a CPU hog, and a crash risk,

I’ve been using SampleTank since v2.2. It started as a love-hate relationship, evolving into a dislike-hate one over time. :rofl: That said, ST4 covers a lot of areas and if you watch the sales it might be your best jack-of-all-trades option. I never use the synth samples (prefer modeled instruments); and found that the acoustic guitars sound good, but strumming 2-3 of them at once easily crashes the VST. I use the brass a bit, certain vocal Oohs and Aaahs, and orchestral strings.

What I dislike about SampleTank, and IK VSTs in general, is their philosophy of drowning the user in choices, some that are first rate, others not so much. It’s hard to find the gems, and encourages wasting time debating whether one should use this vintage Rhodes, that Fender amp, a particular compressor, or a certain speaker pair vs. a half-dozen alternatives that pretty much produce the same result. After spending years – and a lot of $$ in the Custom Shop – I’ve abandoned AT5 for S-Gear 3: only 5 amps, but each one is well-designed, and very flexible. I don’t regret this decision at all. I may reach that point with ST4, too.

FWIW, I have been able to reduce the size of my ST4 XL sample set (+ bonus files) to ~12GB vs. 113GB (10x!), keeping saxes, brass, strings, a few exotic instruments, and backup vocals. There are no tools to do this in ST itself, but if one a) copies the entire ST3+ST4 libraries to new folders; b) deletes unwanted files with a given name in both the Instruments and Samples folders; c) redirects ST to use the new location in Setup; and d) rescans the libraries; it is possible to pare things down yet stay bug-free. (The old libraries can then be deleted/archived.) To be fair, I still have some unwanted items, having been cautious with the Delete key during the paring. These could be removed by trial and error, I suppose, but I haven’t bothered.
Regards, BW

Yup. I was a little less cautious with deleting. I backed up everything to my NAS and just started deleting from those two folders. There is also stuff in another folder. Multis? Or somehing like that. Any of those that referenced what you deleted wil be messed up. But too much work to clean up thoroughly.

Kinda scary the first time. I was worried I was going to break the registry or whatever. But thses things are more like a doc files or xls files. They are not registered programs. You shouldn’t have to manage things this way. But once I got confident I deleted almost everything. That CP 70 was one of the few things I kept. Though i think that wil go bye bye once I have had a chance to play around with Arturia’s latest.


I actually started with all the content on an external hard disc, but now copied the whole thing to a new SSD where I (still) have sufficient space. Moving the content is a pain as Sampletank will not find all the content immediately. I do like that it gives a clear error with the place where it expects the content to be, which makes it more easy to get it in the right place.
Arturia CP70, that is 3x the cost of the complete Sampletank Max, so that is a different league,… :slightly_smiling_face:

@raydyo I don’t use Multis, but we’re thinking along the same lines. There are so many duplicate and near-duplicate sounds in the master library! I’m sure that some users need access to all the variations for soundtracking, etc. but for live performance I just need one good brass section, 2-3 lush string sets, some backup vocals, and maybe a banjo or a mandolin now and then.

All of this file-deleting nonsense could be eliminated by IK releasing a ST Librarian – similar to their ST Editor I downloaded a while back – so that users could eliminate unwanted instruments and know that all the threads and dependencies were taken care of. My Nord Stage has software to handle this task nicely.

The same is true of Amplitube: why can’t I permanently hide say, all the metal amps if I don’t play metal? Or all the fuzz pedals, if I prefer the Fuzz Bender VST?


Arturia CP70, that is 3x the cost of the complete Sampletank Max, so that is a different league,… :slightly_smiling_face:

Exactly. It’s why SampleTank still exists. (Although to be fair, ST prices vary a lot.) It covers a lot of needs, and while not always inexpensive it’s much cheaper than a collection of specific VSTs. But it badly needs a major refresh and some ‘helper’ apps, and maybe go on a diet, too. (I rarely use the ST3 sounds anymore.) But I doubt that IK is spending much effort on it these days.

IK was my first foray into software instruments. I had been on B-3 quest since I got back into playing in my 40s. Hammond was what I played for a “living” in high-school/college. And I could barely afford the Hammond. No Rhodes or Minimoogs for me.

I ended up buying Total Studio Max. I was dismayed that my huge (at the time) 1G SSD was well over half full after install. Initially amazed at all the sounds I now had available. But once you dig deeper into bread and butter sounds like pianos EPs, classic synths, strings, horns, guitars etc. none were as satisfying as B-3X. You get what you pay for. I have eventually ended up paying for arguably some of the best avaiable stuff out there with lots of money wasted on the way there.

Sadly, this is all to satisfy an old fart where music is not much beyond a hobby. If I had even the cheapest of this stuff back in the day…