PRODUCT REVIEW: Sonic Worlds - Meow
Company: Sonic Worlds
Our Rating: 4.4/5
Sonic World’s latest sound library ‘Meow’ is a collection of 157 feline vocalisations recorded with a group of 8 cats, each with unique personalities. Yarron Katz (no pun intended) from Sonic Worlds has put together a collection of recordings taken from cats he has rescued or adopted. Be it a hiss, a purr or a screech, this pack includes all of those and more.
Opening Our Copy
On opening our review copy of Meow, we were given a set of folders named after each cat, as well as a PDF of both the manual and license agreement. Each folder contains a different number of audio files, however most of the files contain more than one sound, these are denoted with a number to indicate how many sounds are in each file. All audio files within this pack are 24Bit 96kHz WAV. The artwork for this release is very nice, and gives you an impression of what's to come.
You’ve Got To Be Kitten Me
When listening to the samples, they are of a very high quality and for the most part, clean and isolated. The nuances of the cat’s vocalisations are captured very well and the softer, more intimate sounds like purring and mewling are captured with a great degree of detail. Yarron’s determination to obtain some of these sounds really shows as he’s managed to capture different moods of some of the cats, ranging from ferocious screeches to soft gentle cries and even playful yelps.
In terms of frequency balance, no sounds are too harsh in the higher frequencies, or too strong in the lower frequencies, this allows for more flexible EQ processing, leading to better localisation for film or games, many of the sounds could be placed into a soundtrack as is with very little post processing needed, if any at all.
So why a cat library you ask? Well, these pesky little creatures can often be difficult to capture, unlike dogs they are notoriously difficult to train. Most recordings are usually dependant on how well behaved (or not) the cat is, and even then you probably have to own the cat to accumulate enough content.
Cats can be a nice and often overlooked background/foreground effect in soundscapes, and we're happy that Sonic Worlds took the time to provide the sound of these Katz.
Cat Got Your Tongue?
An issue we had with small parts of this library was with the presence of room reflections in some of the sounds, this really decreases the level of versatility and usability for those in particular, as they may seem out of place within a soundtrack, or sounding inaccurate to the room. This can easily remedied with some light transient shaping or De-reverb from Izotope RX.
Work can be done to clean up a lot of the reflections, however it would be ideal to have every sound in the library be as clean as possible, as this can greatly improve the versatility of the product. That being said, the cats can be placed in the background of the scene well with some of this distance perception.
The Bottom Line
This unusual but interesting pack is a welcome addition to anyone’s collection of libraries, many of the sounds are at a very high quality and are flexible to work with. The price isn't the best value for such a specific library, but the extent to which it is captured (and the painstaking process with the animals) makes it seem well justified. With our exclusive discount code below you can receive 10% off the current sale price until 10th August!
If you’d like to hear every sound within the library, please check out Yarron’s YouTube video below: