Loops, Prerecorded Phrases and Presets
The use of loops, presets and prerecorded phrases is seen very controversial among the community of composers with some people using only their own individually programmed presets and loops.
There are of course two sides to this: using signature presets from very popular synths or loops and even sample libraries will make your sound pretty generic as you might be using sounds that have been used many times before. On the other hand the general audience will not notice that but only people in the business will. So trying to create own sounds/loops will naturally always give you a more unique voice. On the other hand, sometimes there simply is no time or no budget that justifies spending time in programming stuff and looking for new sounds but simply using the existing tools help you to get the job done.
What makes quite a few composers furious in the community are commercially successful composers who use these tools exclusively needing a minimal amount of creativity to deliver a track and still make a living from it while others laborously tweak and program sounds. Of course everybody has to define his/her own work ethics and hard work will eventually pay off.
If you use these tools once in a while just to get the job done somehow, there should absolutely be no problem with that. Sometimes the quick and dirty path has to do it. Also, some of these tools might be extremely helpful to get inspired. Hearing a great loop or playing around with a prerecorded phrase might help you to kickstart one of your own ideas.
A good thing to avoid the “Oh I know where that phrase is from” problems however is that the market has become very crowded nowadays, especially with orchestral samples and it is not as bad as it used to be with literally a handful of libraries sharing the market and everybody instantly recognizing for instance the “SAM Horns” sound.