The Dunleavy Double Seconds

A steel pan sample library, created for bitKlavier
September 2021


  • Recorded by: Andrés Villalta
  • Steel Pans Played by: Josh Quillen
  • Edited and Denoised by: Josh Quillen, Dan Trueman

Library Specs

This is a sample library of a beautiful low-E double-second set of steel pans, made by Kyle Dunleavy, with the following specs:

  • 44.1k, 24bit
  • at every half-step, ranging from E3 to C#6
  • 7 velocity layers
  • three different stereo mic images 

As of bitKlavier v2.9, all of these packages can be opened directly in the application by setting the “sample search path” to wherever they are stored and then selecting the desired one in the sample library menu. Note that these are large libraries and using the “enable direct-from-disk sample playback” option, with the files stored on an internal SSD or Thunderbolt SSD drive (anything slower likely won’t stream fast enough), is recommended; loading into RAM will take a long time and a lot of RAM. 

We have not created any other formats (e.g., SoundFonts/SFZ) for these, but the license (CC-BY 4.0) allows for that so we welcome it.


Microphone Image Overview:

We used six channels to sample the instrument Princeton University’s Studio A in the Woolworth Center for Musical Studies, as follows:

  1. Neumann TLM 103 pair
  2. Schoeps CMC6U pair
  3. Earthworks OM pair

oriented as illustrated in the photos below:

Recording and Post-Production Process

The session was recorded using ProTools at 44.1k/24bit. Editing took place in Logic Pro X, and all of the samples were batch denoised using iZotope’s RX8 spectral denoise tool to remove room noise.They were then batch edited in Python, using the Essentia library to detect onsets and consistently trim leading silence before the attacks, and also to add short attack (5ms) and release (100ms) fades.

File Naming Convention

  • C4 = middle C
  • Main note names: 
    • [note name][octave]v[velocity].wav
    • e.g., “D#5v4.wav”

Note that bitKlavier should be able to load any folder of samples named according to this convention and map it appropriately, regardless of number of velocity layers, or number of samples per octave, etc.


The Dunleavy Double Seconds sample library is covered by the CC BY 4.0 license.

Have at it…