Tags: posts polarity-music Sampling Atlas Sononym Cosmos Plugins

Comparing Sample Managers: XO, Atlas, Sononym and Cosmos

Tutorial | Feb 18, 2022

In this video, I shared my thoughts on the new sample manager Cosmos by Waves, comparing it to my other sample managers like XO, Atlas, and Sononym. I found that Cosmos offers a lot of additional attributes for samples, which makes it easier to filter down to what you need. I also liked the Galaxy/Cosmos space where you can drag samples directly out. I found Sononym to be more suited for research, as it has a similarity search feature which takes a lot of attributes into consideration. I found Atlas to have better integration of its space, and XO to have the advantage of being able to export multiple samples simultaneously. In conclusion, I found all the sample managers to have different benefits and I use them all for different tasks.

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Questions & Answers

Maybe you dont watch the video, here are some important takeaways:

What is Cosmos by Waves and how does it compare to other sample managers?

Cosmos by Waves is a free standalone sample manager application that scans, analyzes and adds text to your samples. It has a lot of different text attributes like kick, electronic, sustain, wet and more. Additionally, it has a Galaxy/Cosmos space where users can drag samples directly into a directory. It has some features that are missing in other sample managers like Sononym, XO and Atlas, such as a full text search, extended view, and the ability to search for similar samples. However, it is slightly slower than other sample managers, and there is no way to export multiple samples at the same time.

What features does Cosmos by Waves have that other sample managers don’t?

Cosmos by Waves has a few features that other sample managers don’t have, such as a full text search, extended view, and the ability to search for similar samples. Additionally, it has a Galaxy/Cosmos space where users can drag samples directly into a directory, and the ability to create new kits by simply hitting a button.


This is what im talking about in this video. The text is transcribed by AI, so it might not be perfect. If you find any mistakes, please let me know.
You can also click on the timestamps to jump to the right part of the video, which should be helpful.

[00:00.000] Welcome back folks to another video.
[00:03.240] After yesterday's video, some people made the new sample manager called Cosmos by Waves
[00:08.640] and I instantly installed it, tried it out, and I want to show you in this video what
[00:12.840] it's all about.
[00:13.840] Now, I also want to compare it a bit later on to my other sample managers like XO, Atlas
[00:19.720] and Sononym and how I use them and what I think are the pros and the cons.
[00:25.200] So it's highly subjective from my perspective, but you have to decide for yourself what's
[00:30.440] right or wrong for you.
[00:32.120] But like I said, Cosmos is free, so it's basically a non-brainer, try it out and see it for
[00:38.520] yourself.
[00:39.520] So let's go.
[00:42.160] This is how Cosmos looks like and it's a standalone application, it's nice.
[00:49.360] And you can also scroll here through all your samples that are scanned and you can click
[00:54.120] the symbol here to add new folders, sample folders to scan through.
[00:58.920] And what this application does, it's analyzing your samples and adds a lot of text to it,
[01:08.040] to the samples.
[01:09.120] As you can see here, there's this classified as a kick, electronic and a hit.
[01:14.920] And we have a lot of different text actually, also your pet, monophonic, electronic,
[01:20.440] sustain, wet and so on.
[01:23.240] And you can also see the text here on top.
[01:25.880] And this is really nice because in a lot of different sample managers, you don't get
[01:30.680] that.
[01:31.680] For instance, in Atlas or in XO, you only have like classifications for kick, snare, clap
[01:39.960] and so on.
[01:40.960] And that's it.
[01:41.960] But here you get a lot of additional attributes for your samples, which makes it easier to
[01:48.260] filter down to something that you really need at the moment.
[01:53.280] There's also here a column for the key BPM, the length of the sample itself.
[02:01.760] I'm missing columns like file size or something like this, this would be nice.
[02:11.160] But for now, I think for free sample manager, this is really great.
[02:15.400] I think this is not to beat actually because it's free and it's standalone.
[02:23.520] You can also switch your do extended view, which looks like this gives you a small overview
[02:28.240] over the way file, how the file looks like, can play the file, can also loop here.
[02:41.120] And you can then use here the names to drag it out to a different directory or to your
[02:47.840] door.
[02:48.840] There's also here a top of PooTex search where you can search for, I think, the file names
[02:56.240] and also probably the text, which works really nice.
[03:01.280] And I missed that heavily in Atlas.
[03:03.800] There is no PooTex search for file names.
[03:09.160] I always want to have this.
[03:11.760] Yeah, you can also here filter for instruments or certain specifications, also for BPM ranges
[03:23.160] and key ranges and so on.
[03:25.760] And there's also here this called Galaxy or I think in this plugin, it's probably called
[03:32.240] Cosmos and where I have like an XO type or Atlas type of space they can scrap through
[03:40.240] all the samples.
[03:44.720] And at the bottom right here you can see nearby samples that are kind of similar, I think.
[03:52.280] And also here your history, I'm not wrong.
[03:59.120] And you can also rotate the space here to different alignments.
[04:02.920] So at the moment here we have dynamics, so every sound that has the same or similar dynamics
[04:09.440] are close to each other.
[04:11.560] And if you want to have, for instance, your brightness, you see all the samples are grouped
[04:17.480] for brightness now, so these are probably more dark and tone down and these samples here
[04:25.520] are more bright and have more upper frequencies.
[04:29.800] We can turn this around the space and sort it in a way that fits your needs, also in saturation.
[04:43.080] And you can also I think use here a control and drag to track the samples directly out
[04:49.560] of this space into your door or a directory.
[04:53.160] So this is really nice, you can also open up here a small folder on the left side at
[04:59.520] your own collections, or maybe snares I like and drag these into that or use here these
[05:09.680] small icons on the left side where you can bring this into your collections here or even
[05:19.960] favorite here, some of the half samples, but this is possible.
[05:27.760] And there's also here this small little icon, which is not on every sample, I don't know
[05:31.440] why this is, but it is how it is at the moment.
[05:35.600] So you can click on this and it brings you directly into the space here, into the position
[05:42.000] where the sample is to find on this galaxy map, this is also nice to have.
[05:47.600] You can also search for loops or one-shots, and also your half samples of course.
[05:54.320] So a lot of filtering options actually, for a free application standard on application
[06:02.240] this is pretty great.
[06:03.960] The only downside is this one is made by waves and waves has not a nice repetition I would
[06:11.360] say of great software, and you also need to install this whole waves installer thing that
[06:21.200] comes with it.
[06:22.720] And there's also a sample library included with this application, but I haven't installed
[06:29.240] it, I don't need it.
[06:31.320] But if you need some samples, there are also some samples come with this application here.
[06:39.640] And yeah, let's close this down here.
[06:41.720] I want to compare it a bit to my other sample managers I have.
[06:45.920] For instance here, I use also Sononym.
[06:50.120] The only downside for Sononym is for me at the below.
[06:56.160] And it's more aimed at, let's say, research when you really have time and want to create
[07:05.040] some kind of collection of samples that are fit well together, then this is more like
[07:11.320] your tool.
[07:12.320] It also has something like, for instance, I have here some kick drums.
[07:19.680] You can right-click on this kick drum and say search by similarity, right?
[07:25.600] And this tool then creates a new list of samples that are similar to that sample here.
[07:33.560] And it takes a lot of different attributes into consideration to make this happen.
[07:42.840] Not only brightness, not only dynamics, so everything.
[07:46.160] I think it's here, multiple things, spectrum, number, pitch, amplitude, and so on.
[07:56.240] So a lot of different attributes to find the same samples that are sounding similar.
[08:02.880] So this is also missing in here.
[08:05.080] You can, of course, go to the galaxy or to the cosmos and search here for brightness
[08:13.040] or space or saturation dynamics and then find something similar.
[08:19.040] What you can't, you know, take all of the tags, all of the classifications together and
[08:25.880] search for samples that are similar in all kinds of different attributes.
[08:30.400] So this is also missing in here.
[08:32.760] And it's also missing in XO in and atlas.
[08:36.960] So this is unique for this plug in here and that you really find similar samples quickly.
[08:45.600] So basically all of the top samples are kind of similar to each other in terms of loudness,
[08:54.760] brightness, noisiness, length, file length, and so on.
[09:00.520] So a lot of attributes which are really nice to research and to collect different samples
[09:06.600] into maybe a sample pack or something like this.
[09:10.280] Or if you want to make a multi-sampler patch, then this is really nice.
[09:13.760] I use this a lot for searching for the same kind of atmospherics or only textures.
[09:21.200] If you remove basically here the similarity search, if you just remove this here, you can
[09:31.080] see it takes a while sometimes.
[09:34.960] This is a bit sluggish because it's made with Electron.
[09:37.760] It's basically a web app, but it works.
[09:40.560] It's just a bit slow, a bit sluggish if you want to go quickly through this, then yeah,
[09:48.840] this is a bit annoying over time.
[09:51.800] I also have a lot of samples here analyzed.
[09:54.800] I can see in the lower right here I have 116,000 samples analyzed.
[10:03.160] So take this into consideration that it's doing a lot of work here in the background.
[10:12.080] So this one here is, I think, native, at least it feels more snappy.
[10:21.520] And when you add some text to the search and search for something, it's acting very quickly,
[10:31.440] I would say.
[10:33.440] Okay, so the other black inside use is basically here Atlas, as you can see, this one.
[10:41.640] And XO.
[10:43.880] And if I'm not wrong, Atlas was first with this Galaxy view here, with this kind of overview.
[10:53.920] And this is also nice here to search through.
[10:57.680] What I miss a bit here, I think this is better made by XO as you can see using all the
[11:04.960] fine samples in here, you can just drag your mouse through the samples and stop where you
[11:13.640] think it's a great sample.
[11:16.000] And here it's not possible, right?
[11:18.200] If you click and drag, you have basically your sample already ready to drag out.
[11:26.120] That could be probably a key combination, but I'm not sure.
[11:32.680] And also, for instance, you can't find, oh yeah, it's a rimshot.
[11:39.440] Sometimes I don't find the right samples in here, like, for this view, I don't see where
[11:45.920] are the rimshots, right?
[11:47.320] I don't see it.
[11:48.960] And there's also no full text search in here.
[11:54.600] You have to go in or maybe click here and then you see at some point, you're out
[12:02.640] of the rimshots.
[12:04.160] And here I can search for it, right?
[12:06.640] I don't see it either here.
[12:08.240] I know my rimshots are here because I'm used to the plug-in, but you can search at least
[12:14.360] here for rimshots and can basically narrow down your search results this way, which is
[12:21.240] nice to do.
[12:22.240] So let's say this is a better integration of this and this plug-in was first and it has
[12:30.680] some other nice features that I like that XO doesn't have.
[12:37.800] For instance, that you can fill your ads or your sales automatically by just hitting
[12:44.360] new kid.
[12:45.360] And it fills all your sales automatically with random samples.
[12:50.000] That's something that XO is missing.
[12:51.800] You have to drag your or you have to, you know, put this manually in each slot.
[13:01.880] And then you can search here with the sample combiner for random different samples.
[13:06.600] You can exchange them these sales, but you have to fill these slots manually first.
[13:13.480] So this is a downside for me.
[13:16.040] But besides that, I would say this is the better integration of the space in versus Atlas
[13:26.720] and versus Cosmos here.
[13:30.680] But it's just a minor difference, right?
[13:34.440] It's not that big of a gap.
[13:38.360] And I use both Atlas and XO for different things.
[13:44.680] I really enjoy here that you can create new kids by just hitting this button.
[13:50.000] And you can create nice little loops as you see sometimes on my stream when I use Atlas.
[13:57.360] It's pretty quickly to do.
[14:01.040] Another downside of Cosmos is that I haven't found a way to export multiple samples at
[14:06.280] the same time.
[14:07.280] But for instance, I can drag this out and put this here.
[14:10.640] But if I just select multiple samples like this and want to drag here out multiple samples
[14:15.800] into multiple paths, that's not possible.
[14:21.000] With XO, it's possible again.
[14:25.920] And just use your export button, use this rocket thing.
[14:29.360] You can see we have now here filled in five paths or five cells at the same time, which
[14:37.040] is nice to have.
[14:38.520] So small little ups and downs in every application.
[14:45.520] So you have to basically decide what kind of workflow you use most of the times and what's
[14:51.680] okay for you and what not.
[14:53.600] I also heard from someone that he doesn't like that you can't use key combinations here
[15:01.160] in this explorer, I think.
[15:06.240] But it looks like it works.
[15:07.720] You can use just your keys to crop through the samples here and also through the list.
[15:19.400] So easy to do.
[15:21.480] So key combinations kind of work in here.
[15:26.960] It's also possible.
[15:29.920] Yeah, nice.
[15:34.680] So yeah, small little ups and downs.
[15:37.320] It's hard to say which one is the best.
[15:40.400] I use all of them for different tasks.
[15:45.600] So this is more like my researching tool when I create a sample pack, sample libraries
[15:50.640] or multi-sampler patches or something like this and I need really similar samples.
[15:57.160] And I've also created a lot of collections here for stuff.
[16:00.800] I use a lot of your synth wave stuff.
[16:05.440] Not only to have these sample ready but I can quickly go into synth wave here, click
[16:10.000] for a clap and right click and search for similarity and then search different samples
[16:15.000] in the same range, the same similarity, which is nice.
[16:23.920] So I use all of them, that's what I want to say.
[16:26.760] And this one is basically the new kit on the blog and it's free and I will give it a try.
[16:34.760] It takes a while to scan through all your samples as you just saw, I have a lot of samples
[16:43.000] and it wants to classify all of them at attributes to that.
[16:47.600] It would be nice if actually there is a sample manager that could export or write these
[16:56.000] tags as meta tags into the files itself.
[17:00.040] This would be nice to have but none of these sample applications does that at the moment.
[17:06.280] I heard Sononium is wanting to do that at some point where you can export everything
[17:11.640] that's scanned or analyzed in the application and put it into the meta tags.
[17:17.840] This would be really nice.
[17:21.440] And it would be also nice to have this in the DAW already, right?
[17:26.280] A bit with internal browser kind of rocks for quick searches here if you have nice file
[17:34.280] names and it can work and I use it all the time.
[17:39.440] Because I know I have a lot of rightly named files on my hard drive but you really want
[17:47.960] to dig into your sample library and find some samples you never used and you want to make
[17:53.080] use of all of your samples.
[17:54.960] And these sample managers become very, very important in my opinion because you know,
[18:02.320] get something out of you have on your hard drive for years and you can make something out
[18:08.680] of it more.
[18:09.680] So you use what you have more that's basically the benefit of these type of tools.
[18:19.200] So I hope you enjoyed this small little kind of deep dive into my sample managers and
[18:23.600] how I use them.
[18:25.640] Maybe give Cosmos a try.
[18:27.800] I think it's a nice nice new addition to all these sample managers and it's free.
[18:32.960] Like I said, multiple times throughout the video.
[18:35.120] If you liked the video, please leave a like, subscribe to the channel, hit the small little
[18:39.520] bell notification then you are be informed about new videos on my channel which is great
[18:45.520] for me and for you probably.
[18:48.400] Yeah, thanks for watching, see you in the next video and bye.