What Is Kontakt Player?

Kontakt Player

As it provides developers with various tools and an expansive scripting language, third-party manufacturers often program sample libraries that run on the Kontakt sampling and synthesis engine.

As Kontakt is a paid sample library development tool, it does not support free instruments downloadable to it; hence the common display of red DEMO text for demo-only instruments that come for free downloads from Kontakt.

What is Kontakt Player?

Many users with experience using sample libraries will likely be familiar with Kontakt, the host software that powers thousands of unique virtual instruments from companies worldwide. Unfortunately, many don’t realize there are two variants of Kontakt software, leading them down the wrong path and buying libraries they cannot use or that only work in 15 minute demo mode.

Kontakt 5 Full is the paid for full version of this software that comes equipped with a large collection of samples that can be used to build instruments and orchestral ensembles in the program. Users also gain access to Native Instrument’s own instruments as well as third-party libraries via this version; its free counterpart, Kontakt Player allows access to a limited set of features offered in full version of software.

NI Native Access license and provide a.nkp file are needed in order for third-party companies to create libraries compatible with Kontakt Player, including Instrument Maps and Sample Mappings, plus bundle up all resources that the instrument requires such as IR samples, the MIDI Ch that serves note input as well as any scripts the instrument may contain.

Some libraries do not license the Player as it costs money to do so, which not all small developers can afford to do. When loading non-Player libraries into the free Kontakt Player they only appear in demo mode for 15 minutes before being autoauthorised in your Quick Load folder if available.

What are the main features of Kontakt Player?

Native Instruments’ powerful sample-based software instrument used in virtually every music production studio worldwide. It offers many useful features that enable its user to transform any sample into musically useful soundscapes.

Kontakt can also be used to program custom instruments through its Kontakt Script Processor (KSP). Third party sample manufacturers frequently package their libraries with customized versions of Kontakt that feature an optimized GUI specifically tailored to that library – providing access to its powerful sampling and synthesis engine without incurring one-time programming fees and per-sale license fees associated with full versions of Kontakt.

The Free Orchestra uses a customized user interface for Kontakt Player that offers only essential SoundEngine parameters as onscreen controls. Although its editing capabilities don’t match those found in full version of Kontakt, its still an extremely capable instrument suitable for multiple uses and sounds great.

How a third-party library is licensed depends entirely upon how the developer designed their instrument. If they license it for Kontakt Full, however, they typically include special features in their instrument to work both ways and detect whether you have installed either free Kontakt Player or full Kontakt. If so, red DEMO text will appear alongside the instrument name when loading up this library.

If a developer hasn’t licensed their instrument for Kontakt Player, they may include an unlicensed feature which requires you to purchase and activate it with full version of Kontakt – usually indicated by entering serial numbers provided by library vendors into Info Pane; then instrument won’t show up in Libraries tab until activated using one.

When running the free Kontakt Player, selecting Help from the system drop-down menu opens a Native Access application with online documentation resources and knowledge base support. Furthermore, an option in the Main Control Panel enables direct access to Kontakt’s website for easier navigation.

How do I install Kontakt Player?

As soon as you first open Kontakt Player it will ask for details of your audio and MIDI hardware. These settings determine how Kontakt will address MIDI and audio hardware when used as a stand-alone app; it differs significantly from when running as part of a sequencer host application.

Once you’ve selected your hardware, click OK and the Library Browser will display a list of all installed libraries. If a library that you would like to use is missing from here, it must first be added via Native Access or its manufacturer’s website; third-party Powered By Kontakt libraries must also be activated via Native Access before they can be loaded into the Library Browser.

The Library Browser allows you to quickly and efficiently organize and filter installed libraries according to their folder structure. Each folder displays its subfolders and files in a column on the right of the Browser; clicking an entry from that column will display its contents in your browser window and you can scroll through its horizontal structure as needed.

Notes about the Library Browser: The Libraries tab shows your installed libraries (excluding those not Powered By Kontakt). A “Player” library indicates it was designed specifically for Kontakt Player version rather than retail software license – as there may be significant programming costs and licensing fees involved when designing instruments specifically for free distribution via Kontakt Player.

Kontakt Player makes it easy to access instruments from non-Player libraries by using its Library Browser’s Locate feature. A popup window will appear, providing instructions on how to download and activate it via Native Access or its manufacturer website – once activated you can add it directly into the Library Browser for playback and launch it!

If an instrument you are trying to load was designed for an older version of Kontakt than yours, the Instrument Info Pane will notify you and it may be necessary to install that version for optimal operation of this instrument. Since Kontakt updates over time with new features and instruments developed for older versions may no longer function in newer ones, so updating is sometimes required in order for all instruments developed for older versions of Kontakt to work within current software releases.

How do I use Kontakt Player?

Kontakt Player can be used both as a standalone program and a plug-in within your sequencer or DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) application. When operating as a plug-in, its instrument will be controlled by MIDI data from your sequencer while its audio output feeds directly into a virtual mixer for signal flow control. This also enables multiple instances of Kontakt Player running at once alongside sound generators and effects plug-ins accessed through one common interface.

Third-party sample libraries powered by the Kontakt synthesis engine typically come equipped with their own version of the Kontakt Player that contains additional instrument building tools that aren’t available in the free player, thus prompting many online sample sellers to state on their product pages that these samples don’t work with it.

The main control panel provides easy access to the Library Browser and various optional interface parts (side pane). Furthermore, The Master Editor offers global controls and options that influence all Instruments within your Multi.

To use Instruments with the free Kontakt Player, it is first necessary to add them to the Library Browser. Clicking “Add Instruments” opens a drop-down menu allowing you to choose from a selection of libraries. Once added, it shows an organized tree view displaying all your sample libraries along with any Instrument Builder projects created.

Only instruments compatible with the free Kontakt Player can be loaded; while its full counterpart (included with Native Instruments’ Komplete bundle) allows access to more types of instruments. You may only build or edit them if your version of Kontakt (Kontakt Player or Full) allows it.

The primary distinction between Kontakt Player and Kontakt Full is cost: the latter costs money and requires registration with Native Instruments in order to use. Furthermore, Kontakt Full includes the Kontakt Editor which allows you to map samples to keys, create and edit instrument scripts defining their behaviour, etc.

Press ESC to close