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#1530919 - 10/08/10 11:30 AM Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5
Dave Ferris Offline
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Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
I recorded two short excerpts last night of me blowing a couple choruses on the Dizzy Gillespie standard "Groovin" High". This was done more out of curiosity sake and not meant to be a controlled , scientific comparison. I added the drums of the CP-5 for more of a rhythmic reference point since there isn't a Bass player.
I tried to match the levels, I think the CP-5 has a tad more reverb. I purposely stuck to more linear playing, I'll try and record some more chordal, sustained examples later on.

Nord Piano "Grand Lady D "
http://www.divshare.com/download/12774435-4a1

CP-5 "CF Grand " (edited)
http://www.divshare.com/download/12774433-8e5
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#1530931 - 10/08/10 11:42 AM Re: Jazz lines on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
EssBrace Offline
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Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
Shame the Nord is in mono on this and left of centre in the stereo field...difficult to compare when the Yammie is resplendent in stereo across the field. It's funny though that the Nord sounds quite authentic...like an old mono recording of the real thing. I own a Nord piano...I prefer Studio Grand 2 (a Yamaha C7) to the Grand Lady D.

Thanks for sharing these recordings!

Steve
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#1530952 - 10/08/10 12:10 PM Re: Jazz lines on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: EssBrace]
Dave Ferris Offline
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Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
It was very late last night when I recorded these. As I went out to the studio and looked at my Soundcraft Delta board this morning I noticed the right NP's channel was not panned to the right cry it was at 12 o'clock straight up, so thus the mono vibe. And yet another reason why no one is paying me for being a "recording engineer". laugh

I'll try and re-record when I get a chance today. Thanks for pointing that out Steve.
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#1531016 - 10/08/10 01:49 PM Re: Jazz lines on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
PianoZac Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 1424
First of all great playing Dave. About the recordings, I think i might like the sound of the Nord (even though it's mono) better than the Yamaha piano. the Nord sounds more authentic. I'm quite impressed. What model Nord is that? And what's the MAP price on that? Thanks for the links Dave!

Cheers
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Nord Piano 2


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#1538377 - 10/18/10 08:57 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: PianoZac]
Dave Ferris Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
Some more examples. Different samples used on both pianos.

Dave Brubeck's "In Your Own Sweet Way".

Nord Piano "Studio Grand 2"
http://www.divshare.com/download/12844997-d39

Yamaha CP-5 "S6 Grand"
http://www.divshare.com/download/12844987-847

2nd disclaimer
Listening to the mp3, the Yamaha level is a little lower then the Nord.
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#1538581 - 10/19/10 06:08 AM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
Dave Horne Offline
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Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5276
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
They both sound very nice! Both the playing and the sound. I'd be happy with either.
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#1539202 - 10/20/10 02:19 AM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
nitekatt2008z Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/24/08
Posts: 552
Dave, those were nice recordings. As far as the Nord series, I honestly don't care for the type of keyboard action they are using compared to the Yamahas and my Korg M50 88 weighted keys. What is your take on the Nord keys action compared to other stage pianos? How heavy is the Yamaha and Nord?

Have you tried the Kurzweil Stage pianos? They are hard to find in the LA area. GC doesn't seem to carry them.

Last week I played the new Casio PX-3 which I liked, especially the price at $799. Of course it can't be compared to the more higher end and expensive stage pianos out there, but a good deal as a MIDI controller and under 25 lbs.

katt

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#1539208 - 10/20/10 02:41 AM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: nitekatt2008z]
Dave Ferris Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
The Nord Piano uses an improved action from the Nord Stage. Action is very subjective to the player and style but imo the NP doesn't quite offer the same pianistic control as the CP-5 and probably not as a fluent action that's on the Korg SV-1. Nonetheless, the NP is a pleasure to play, the action definitely does not get in the way in the least bit. On the contrary, it compliments the sound of the whole instrument nicely.

Both my CP5 and the NP are fairly light, I have to watch it since I've been putting so much time in lately on both. I've gotten back more to regular practice on the D this week so it's cool, but I have to be careful not to spend too much time on them. It will affect my piano chops in the negative for sure.

I've just tried the PC3X and it wasn't my thing. The "triple strike piano" on its own that they still use doesn't bother me that much, it's more the Kurz's Fatar action with the finger/sound connection of their sample...it feels and sounds dull and lifeless to me.

The Nord is a dream to gig with from a size/weight/live sound aspect.
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#1539211 - 10/20/10 02:56 AM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris
The Nord Piano uses an improved action from the Nord Stage. I've never been a fan of the Stage's action, this is definitely more playable, still not like the CP-5 though. Both are fairly light, I have to watch it since I've been putting so much time in lately on both. I've gotten back more to regular practice on the D this week so it's cool, but I have to be careful not to spend too much time on them. It will affect my piano chops in the negative for sure.


This would be another excellent post to add to the sticky "Make sure you play an acoustic piano regularly" thread...

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#1541069 - 10/22/10 02:27 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
voxpops Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/20/07
Posts: 3042
Loc: Oregon
Dave & Steve,

Are you yet romantically attached to your Nord Pianos? Are they boards you would want to keep long-term? If not, would you care to share?

I'm a little worried about the action. My Electro 3 sounded great (same pianos), but I just couldn't live with the action. Dave, I know you've said that the NP's action is light. My RD-300Sx's action was light, and, as a result, it was limiting. How does the Nord Piano's action compare with the best from Roland, Kawai and Yamaha in terms of playability?

Also, does the limited adjustment on effect levels irritate?

Thanks for any insight you can give.


Edited by voxpops (10/22/10 02:30 PM)
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#1541085 - 10/22/10 03:07 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: voxpops]
PianoZac Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 1424
Originally Posted By: voxpops
How does the Nord Piano's action compare with the best from Roland, Kawai and Yamaha in terms of playability?

Also, does the limited adjustment on effect levels irritate?

Thanks for any insight you can give.

I can't speak for Dave, but I can give you my take. I've been making many trips to local music stores playing various keyboards, and as you know currently own the RD-700GXF. I think Roland, and probably Kawai's latest DPs, own the market when it comes to action. It's really hard to say, but I think the PHA II/III actions are steps above what Yamaha/Nord/Kurzweil/Korg/Casio have. Action is a HUGE deal for me, which is what initially sold me on the RD-700GX (pre SN upgrade). Once I added the SN upgrade it improved the action, not in a literal sense, but in the way in which you press the keys and the sound is produced-it's just much more realistic than most other DPs I've played which includes the the best from Yamaha, Roland, Korg, Kurzweil, Casio, and Kawai. I think the PHA III action is about as close as it gets for non-acoustic grand pianos.
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#1541100 - 10/22/10 03:23 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
EssBrace Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
voxpops...

I'm very attached to my Nord Piano...it is somehow more than the sum of its parts. Action really is ok...in terms of grand piano emulation it is inferior to Roland PHA-II or III and Yamaha GH3. I cannot comment about recent Kawai actions other than to say I believe from all that has so far been published that the Nord will also fall some way short of the Kawai, especially the RM3 wooden action.

I have briefly played a Roland with the alpha II action...not impressed and I would certainly choose the Nord over it. Likewise, I had a little go on a GHS equipped Yamaha...not for me. I think the Nord is a heavier action than either of these two.

The Nord action feels smooth and predictable to me and provides rewarding control of the piano and other tones...I am happy to leave it at that personally but as I said above if I wanted as much accuracy as possible in terms of fidelity to a real piano I would look at the big three.

I used to think I was an action geek having owned a Yamaha Gran Touch and god knows what else over the years. But I have acclimatised to the more modest Nord action and it isn't an issue for me.

On the NP I really like the Studio Grand 2 present, which is a Yamaha C7...not sure if it's what you have played before on an Electro because the Studio Grand 2 is much more recent than Studio Grand 1 (also a Yamaha C7 - I don't like it personally). In many technical ways the Nord is inferior to others I own/have owned but I enjoy playing Studio Grand 2 more than any other DP I have ever owned...and I have owned so many it scares me to think how much money I've spent.

I still maintain that the Roland SN is the only hardware DP that can stand comparison with a good sample library and therefore I think it is very clearly the most advanced sound engine available and is COMPLETELY devoid of the defects that some of us have become sensitive to, ie, looping, layers etc. But, the Nord has a character that does it for me...it's a very personal thing I suppose. I find the levels on the effects have quite significant adjustment available so again, I'm happy enough is this respect. And finally, the EPs are just astoundingly good. One of the new Rhodes sounds - Sparkletop - is truly wonderful in my opinion.

Cheers,

Steve
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Yamaha CP1

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#1541127 - 10/22/10 04:02 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: PianoZac]
Hideki Matsui Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/19/10
Posts: 787
Originally Posted By: PianoZac
I think the PHA III action is about as close as it gets for non-acoustic grand pianos.


For me the action on the Yamaha N3 I tried was the best action I have felt in the digital world.

I love the Yamaha action on my CP-1, but it really is more of an EP player's action. I haven't tried Roland's latest boards, but I really couldn't stand the action on my G8 or my 700SX. I'm trying to decide on a 700NX or the MP10... the wait is killing me.


Edited by Hideki Matsui (10/22/10 04:02 PM)
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#1541132 - 10/22/10 04:04 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5276
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
For me the action on the Yamaha N3 I tried was the best action I have felt in the digital world.

It should be good since it's not a digital action per se but a very slightly modified action from a C3.
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#1541138 - 10/22/10 04:10 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
EssBrace Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
I agree, I don't think we can talk about the AG action in the same breath as any other type; it is a grand piano action. It is valid to compare all the others but the AG is on another level entirely. It almost doesn't need to be said...the AG is better than all the others. There, I said it. But it is unfair to the others to use the AG action to make unfavourable comparisons.

Steve
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#1541148 - 10/22/10 04:23 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Horne]
Hideki Matsui Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/19/10
Posts: 787
Originally Posted By: Dave Horne
For me the action on the Yamaha N3 I tried was the best action I have felt in the digital world.

It should be good since it's not a digital action per se but a very slightly modified action from a C3.



Oh I know that. I'm just pointing out that as far as DPs go, its the one with the best action out there. All DP actions have some mechanical element... except maybe the iPhone ones. Ultimately, the action in the N3 is still hitting a sensor(s).
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#1541149 - 10/22/10 04:23 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Horne]
Dave Ferris Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
That's the thing. None of these DPs are in the same universe as a real piano--sound , action, instrument connection.

For me they are nothing more then a tool to gig with. My priorities are weight/size factor, how well does it cut through live over the bass & drums, how well can it sound in mono, do the other sounds work live in different musical situations as well.

Since I already have a serious instrument that I do my practicing on, I just want something that's not going to get in the way too much on a gig. The NP like Steve said has a unique character of its own. After spending some time with it, gigging and just playing it in my studio, I think it's a wonderful instrument but highly dependent on the best speaker system you can pair it up with. In a way it's the best gigging tool I've ever owned from the weight/build quality perspective. The sound live is outstanding especially in mono.. The action comparison is what I stated earlier in the thread. Yeah I can definitely see holding onto this long term. I don't think there's a comparison between trying to play piano on the Electro 3 and the Nord Piano.
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#1541154 - 10/22/10 04:30 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: EssBrace]
Hideki Matsui Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/19/10
Posts: 787
Originally Posted By: EssBrace
But it is unfair to the others to use the AG action to make unfavourable comparisons.

Steve


Apologies. Wasn't trying to do that. I was just pointing out that it is the DP that I felt had the best action. Since there are quite a few home DPs that seem to be in the same size range as the N2/N3, I thought Yamaha's approach of just putting a real action in rather than trying to simulate a GP action was a good idea. Limitations in size are obviously going to limit what you can do with a portable stage DP.


Edited by Hideki Matsui (10/22/10 04:38 PM)
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#1541159 - 10/22/10 04:35 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
Hideki Matsui Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/19/10
Posts: 787
Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris
That's the thing. None of these DPs are in the same universe as a real piano--sound , action, instrument connection.


Completely true. Really excellent playing by the way.

I think stage DPs are great for live performances and an easy transition when you practice on a real piano.

I'm trying to find a DP that is relatively portable (e.g. CP1) but will also serve as a good practice instrument in the evenings and late night when my 7 year old son's activities interfere with my practice... or vice versa.


Edited by Hideki Matsui (10/22/10 04:37 PM)
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#1541167 - 10/22/10 04:47 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: EssBrace]
Dave Ferris Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
Originally Posted By: EssBrace
And finally, the EPs are just astoundingly good. One of the new Rhodes sounds - Sparkletop - is truly wonderful in my opinion.


The Sparkletop is great ! So is the Wurli. It's fun to play these different EPs on gigs and see the amazement on the faces of the other musicians that go back far enough to remember what the real thing sounded like.

I owned the RD700GX for about a month when it first came out. I spent considerable hours on it, gigging and practicing with it. It's very subjective but that action and the sound of that piano just did not connect with me at all. Again like Steve said, it's a very personal thing. The Nord maybe is not as sophisticated from an action standpoint but there's something about the total package of the NP that feels so alive and organic when I get it out live.
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#1541173 - 10/22/10 04:56 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
EssBrace Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris
.....there's something about the total package of the NP that feels so alive and organic....


Yes, you've pretty much put your finger on it with this simple statement Dave!
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#1541190 - 10/22/10 05:12 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
voxpops Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/20/07
Posts: 3042
Loc: Oregon
Thank you all for your input, and very balanced analysis.

However, I hope you realize that you've given me one more headache to contend with! I now have to add the Nord Piano into my search. So far I'm down to:
MP6 - modest weight, unknown action, unknown pianos, drawbar organs, good controller functions;
NP88 - lightweight, great APs and EPs, intuitive, so-so action(?);
FP-7f - possibly great APs, run-of-the-mill EPs(?), good action, slightly heavy but includes speakers.
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#1541191 - 10/22/10 05:12 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: EssBrace]
Kawai James Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 9077
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
But guys, didn't anyone tell you? You're not allowed to like the Nords because they're red!

(joke)
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"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

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#1541204 - 10/22/10 05:31 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
EssBrace Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
James, the red matches the hue of my bank account thanks to the ceaseless quest to find the perfect DP!
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#1541218 - 10/22/10 05:40 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
Kawai James Offline
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Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 9077
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Lol! wink
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Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

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#1541665 - 10/23/10 11:25 AM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
7notemode Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/10/07
Posts: 102
Loc: Raleigh/Durham NC
Hey, Dave F., I went to Nord's website and listened to sound examples of their pianos. It is remarkable they can get such incredible sound out of 64MB's. If they did a sound module, I would get it in a minute!

Tom
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#1541706 - 10/23/10 12:36 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: 7notemode]
Dave Ferris Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
Hey Tom. I kept going to their site and listening to the the Ravel, Grieg and Schumann examples and was pretty knocked out with the clarity of the sound. The Nord sounds very different then all the other DPs. I think it's a great keyboard, especially for taking out to jobs.
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#1541789 - 10/23/10 02:43 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
7notemode Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/10/07
Posts: 102
Loc: Raleigh/Durham NC
I see where the Nord Piano has 500 MB of memory. I wonder if they will ever come out with a single 500 MB piano, for instance. Yes the Grieg, Ravel pieces are amazing.
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#1541795 - 10/23/10 02:54 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: 7notemode]
dewster Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4340
Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: 7notemode
It is remarkable they can get such incredible sound out of 64MB's.

If they tripled that they could get rid of the fairly heavy stretching. Triple it again and the attack and loop samples would be long enough to almost not notice that it's looped. If it's knocking your socks off at 64MB, imagine the drool factor at 10x that.

The Nord specs for the NP say there is Approx. 500 MB is available for the piano sounds. I wonder if there are any engineering limitations in the NP that would prevent a single piano from being the size of the entire sample memory?

[edit]Tom, you read my mind!


Edited by dewster (10/23/10 02:55 PM)
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#1541812 - 10/23/10 03:31 PM Re: Jazz piano examples on the Nord Piano & Yamaha CP-5 [Re: Dave Ferris]
EssBrace Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
I think in theory you could have one piano patch of approx 500 MB. There is a Bosendorfer sample that was due for release third quarter of this year...now quoted as "later in 2010". Their sample sizes have crept up steadily and I expect the Bosie to be maybe just under 100 MB...not much I know but going in the right direction.

Steve
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