Virtual Instruments and Sound Libraries

Here’s a quick roundup of virtual guzheng instruments for composers and producers. You’ll need a version of Kontakt Player to run these. They range from $60-$120. The current recommendation for best value is Impact Soundworks. It has the best interface, best control set, a great set of techniques, and is surprisingly the cheapest.

Evolution Series ranks second. They have a more focused list of techniques with several options for tremolo, a slightly less usable interface, and are the most expensive. Soniccoutoure was most recently updated, so that’s nice.

There are non-Kontakt options out there. Best Service, A company in Germany, Released Yellow River Sound Guzheng in 2009. Price: $129 USD. Sound MAgic / Supreme Piano, an unknown, possibly China-based company released Guzheng in 2019 for $99.

There are various Sample Libraries out there if you don’t want a virtual instrument. One example is the 2009 “Silk’ from Sounds Online. It includes guzheng and 22 other sampled instruments in their $299 USD library.

Impact Soundworks Plectra Series 5: Guzheng:

Price: $59 USD

Sound Files: 24bit, references 10GB install size and 50GB uncompressed.

Release Year: 2017.

Articulations/Techniques: 18

  • Fingers

  • Picks

  • Picks w/ Sponge

  • Harmonics

  • Bend Down Halftone

  • Bend Down Whole Tone

  • Bend Up Halftone

  • Bend Up Whole Tone

  • Bow Down

  • Bow Up

  • Bow Down-Up

  • Bow Staccato

  • Bow Crescendo

  • Edge Bow Down

  • Edge Bow Up

  • Edge Bow Down-Up

  • Edge Bow Staccato

  • Edge Bow Crescendo

Kontakt Version: 5.7

Impact Soundworks Manual

WavesFactory Guzheng:

Price: ~$70 USD (€ 59)

Sound Files 24bit, 2.29GB total.

Release Year: 2013, last update unknown.

Articulations / Techniques: 5- “fingers, pick, stick, bow and ebow".

Kontakt Version: Player 4.2.3

Notes: I have no idea what ‘stick’ is supposed to be.

WavesFactory Manual

Soniccoutoure Guzheng - Atmospheric Chinese Zither:

Price: $99 USD

Sound Files: 24bit 44khz, 2.25 GB total.

Release Year: 2009, updated 2018.

Articulations/Techniques: 3 articulations: "Left hand, right hand, harmonics (finger picks)".

Kontakt Version: 5.6.8

Soniccoutoure Manual

Evolution Series World Strings Guzheng:

Price: $119 USD

Sound Files: 24 bit 48khz, 18GB lossless, total. References 40 GB uncompressed

Release Year: 2013, possibly updated in 2017.

Articulations/Techniques: 14 "techniques".

  • Pick/vibrato

  • Finger/Harmonics

  • Bend Down

  • Bend Up

  • Crescendo

  • Diminuendo

  • Tremolo

  • Tremolo Dim Rel

  • Tremolo Crescendo

  • Tremolo Slow Crescendo Dim Rel

  • Tremolo Fast Cresceno Dim Rel

  • Tremolo Bend down

  • Tremolo Bend Up

  • Various Glissandi

Kontakt Version: 4

No Manual Available.