Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) Pianoteq
Latest Pianoteq add-on instrument: U4 upright piano
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
#1983267 - 11/06/12 12:15 AM How to connect Ivory II?
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
I haven't used virtual instruments with keyboards. For a complete newbie, how does this all connect? My understanding is midi out from the keyboard via a midi cable of some type into a laptop, where the software is installed. I'm not sure what happens from there.

I'm guessing as you play the piano, sound comes out of the laptop using the Ivory II samplings. But that seems impractical as there would be too much latency. Are there any youtube videos of this complete setup or does someone here have a video? I see people on youtube playing keyboards using this type of setup. However, they only show the keyboard and nothing else, which gives an incomplete picture.

I have a Kawai MP10 and Macbook Pro (2.2Ghz Intel core i7 with 8GB RAM and SSD drive).

Top
(ads) Sweetwater / PR /Roland
Yamaha Keyboards for Performance and Composition

Pearl River World's Best Selling Piano

Click Here


#1983279 - 11/06/12 01:37 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
RafaPolit Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/20/11
Posts: 263
Loc: Quito, Ecuador
You have the picture right. The latency issue depends on several factors, computer speed, audio hardware, effects added, etc. But in most cases you can configure it to be so low as to not bother you. Your computer has great specs, are you using the onboard audio or do you have an separate audio card?

The usual setup has the computer audio output either returning into the DP or to external monitors.

Rafa.


Edited by RafaPolit (11/06/12 01:38 AM)
_________________________
Roland FP-7F

Top
#1983283 - 11/06/12 02:11 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
TwoFiveOne Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/15/12
Posts: 13
You can use the USB port on the MP10 to connect with your laptop (MIDI over USB) Use the build in audio of your macbook.


Edited by TwoFiveOne (11/06/12 02:12 AM)

Top
#1983308 - 11/06/12 05:10 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
I posted a diagram here.

Top
#1983314 - 11/06/12 05:51 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: brettr

I'm guessing as you play the piano, sound comes out of the laptop using the Ivory II samplings. But that seems impractical as there would be too much latency. ...

I have a Kawai MP10 and Macbook Pro (2.2Ghz Intel core i7 with 8GB RAM and SSD drive).


That should be a quad-core i7 so you won't have any latency issue with Ivory II on that MBP as long as you load the sample library on the SSD. If you have both an SSD and a HD installed in the MBP load the Ivory II program on the HD and the samples on the SSD. Ivory II is MUCH more disc intensive than the Vintage D virtual piano for instance, and unless you have a fast disc drive (an SSD is very fast) you would have to use a larger audio buffer which would increase latency. But with an SSD you will have no problem using around 100 voice polyphony (a setting you make within the Ivory II standalone application). You should be able to use a 128 sample buffer (also set within the Ivory II standalone application) or possibly smaller (depends on that i7/SSD combination and the number of voices chosen) and won't notice any latency.

You don't need an external audio interface. You can run the digital audio output of the MBP to an audio receiver to drive speakers. Connect the USB to Host output of the MP10 to the Mac USB port. No additional Mac MIDI driver is required for that keyboard according to the MP10 manual.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1983361 - 11/06/12 09:44 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
Thanks all. This is very helpful. @MacMacMac, great diagram.

The MBP has a 250GB SSD and that's the only drive. There's 10GB of free space available. I'll have have to make more but what does Ivory require?

I'm mainly interested in the 'Steinway D Concert Grand' (or at least I think I am).

I use the headphones so won't need to go with an external speaker setup. Does that mean I only need a USB cable (no midi)?

Can Ivory also record what you are playing? Will that tax the system too much, creating unreasonable latency?

Since I don't know if ultimately I will like Ivory, do they have a demo that allows a full try out? I think they do. I just have to get a USB cable now.

I drag my laptop all over though. To avoid constantly setting it up and taking it down with the MP10, is just getting a Mac mini or something ideal? Something that is dedicated to the MP10 and remains setup? I'm looking for something small that can be somewhat tucked away.

The MP10 has superior action but crap sound. Rather than getting an Avant Grand at this point, The MP10/Ivory setup might do for the time being and I don't have to worry about hauling around some hulking piano. Even with some dedicated computer for Ivory + the MP10, that will probably come to around $200 (Ivory) + $1500 (computer) + $2100 (MP10) = $3700. If the sound can be made as good as the action, that will be an excellent deal.

Top
#1983428 - 11/06/12 01:00 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
Ivory takes up LOTS of disk space. If you have only 10 GB of free space, that's a problem. I have a variety of piano libraries, some as small at 4 GB, some approaching 10 GB ... and the full Ivory v1.5 package, which takes around 60 GB for it's four pianos. For that reason, I had to replace the original 80 GB drive with a 330 GB drive. Not expensive.

But I wonder ... how is it that you've nearly filled up your 250 GB drive before loading up on piano stuff? I presume that this is not a piano-only laptop?

Mine is dedicated to the piano. I have no non-piano stuff on it, aside from a web browser. Everything fits into around 180 GB ... Windows, tools, and piano libraries galore.

But if your laptop will be a do-everything box, you'll need more storage.

As for connections ... If the MP10 has a USB-to-host connection, you won't need an external sound card ... well, maybe ...

I use the Presonus sound card because my laptop's sound card exhibits too much latency. The Presonus solved that. It also offers a MIDI interface. I use the MIDI connection, but I could just as well use a direct USB connection.

If your laptop sound card does not show much latency, then you could skip the external sound card. All you'd need is a USB cable. (You'll probably need the freebie ASIO4All driver, too. But I don't know much about Macs, so I'm not certain about that part.)

Top
#1983447 - 11/06/12 01:55 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
Thanks. I have a lot of stuff on this MBP and will need to clean it off. I haven't used for anything piano yet. If this all works out, I may get a machine dedicated to the piano.

Does Ivory II offer a trial?

Top
#1983463 - 11/06/12 02:46 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
No trials for Ivory.
Nor for any of the Galaxy pianos (Vintage D, Vienna Grand, Steinway, Giant, Alicias Keys).

You can book an online tryout seesion at try-sound.

They have a bunch of pianos (and other instruments) that you can try. The network introduces a lot of latency, so you can't play properly. But you can get an idea of what the pianos sound like. And it's free.

Top
#1983469 - 11/06/12 03:14 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
RafaPolit Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/20/11
Posts: 263
Loc: Quito, Ecuador
As for recording: you can use any DAW or other recording software to play and record, but I find it much easier to record to a midi track (if you are unfamiliar, midi tracks only record numbers: which note you played, how fast you played it, for how long, if you depressed the pedal or not, etc.) and then I play back that midi track to the sampled sound for record.

This allows several advantages:
- If your latency is an issue, you can 'lower' the settings of the piano for your original play but put them at max for the recording, as latency will no longer bother you.
- You can try different settings for the piano sounds, including varying the amount and type of reverb, etc., or even change the sound completely (for instance, you decided an EP was more suiting for that particular song).
- If you made any mistake when playing, you can correct a single note you missed instead of recording that part again.
- You can make your playing into a score for others to play or to comment on.

Recording midi data puts almost no burden on the computer.

Rafa.
_________________________
Roland FP-7F

Top
#1983497 - 11/06/12 04:33 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: brettr
Thanks all. This is very helpful. @MacMacMac, great diagram.

MacMacMac is trying to be helpful but the diagram shows an external sound card. There is no reason to use an external sound card in this way with a Mac. That is PC thinking. Correct me if I'm wrong MacMacMac, but despite your name you are a PC user, right?

Run the USB to Host connection from the MP10 to a Mac USB input directly. Run the digital audio output from the Mac directly to the audio receiver that is shown in the diagram directly. No sound card. Also according to the MP10 manual, the built-in Mac USB/MIDI driver works, so you don't even load an external driver for that keyboard.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1983503 - 11/06/12 04:45 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
I setup a session with try-sound. But after downloading and trying to open their apps, I get an error that they are both from an unidentified developer. Looks like they don't support the latest OS X. So that's a no go.

Is the only option to shell out the 200 bucks? I like the Ivory II Steinway D sound. In the beginning, I liked the MP10 sound but that all changed fast since the adjustments can't improve it. I think the Ivory II will be a dramatic improvement/difference but I haven't played it so can't be sure.

Top
#1983513 - 11/06/12 05:00 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Macy]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
Yes, I'm a PC user. My name was Mac long before the Macintosh was born ... and even before Steve Jobs was born.
Originally Posted By: Macy
Correct me if I'm wrong MacMacMac, but despite your name you are a PC user, right?

And yes, you can run audio from the macINTOSH to the amplifier without using an external sound card. I needed one because I'm running Win XP on a rather ancient laptop. I could not get low latency with the built-in soundcard, so I went with an external.

In other fora people running Win 7 on modern hardware seem to have success without the external sound card. And likewise with the Mac.

I've also read discussion that the external cards give better sound ... for techno reasons. Maybe that's true, but I didn't have any problem with the sound quality of the internal sound card. Only the latency was troublesome.
Originally Posted By: Macy
Run the USB to Host connection from the MP10 to a Mac USB input directly. Run the digital audio output from the Mac directly to the audio receiver that is shown in the diagram directly. No sound card. Also according to the MP10 manual, the built-in Mac USB/MIDI driver works, so you don't even load an external driver for that keyboard.

Top
#1983515 - 11/06/12 05:05 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: brettr
I setup a session with try-sound. But after downloading and trying to open their apps, I get an error that they are both from an unidentified developer. Looks like they don't support the latest OS X. So that's a no go.


Did you try to right-click and then Open? They probably haven't registered with Apple. This is simply the new GateKeeper security function in Mountain Lion (OS X 10.8)

Originally Posted By: brettr
Is the only option to shell out the 200 bucks? I like the Ivory II Steinway D sound. In the beginning, I liked the MP10 sound but that all changed fast since the adjustments can't improve it. I think the Ivory II will be a dramatic improvement/difference but I haven't played it so can't be sure.

Are you talking about the Ivory II German D (part of the Ivory II Grand Piano collection) or the Ivory II American Concert D? I would recommend the latter, and it's less expensive since its only one piano, but that's a matter of personal taste. The American Concert D is larger however. It takes 49 GB of drive space.


Edited by Macy (11/06/12 05:45 PM)
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1983516 - 11/06/12 05:08 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: MacMacMac]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: MacMacMac

I've also read discussion that the external cards give better sound ... for techno reasons. Maybe that's true, but I didn't have any problem with the sound quality of the internal sound card. Only the latency was troublesome.


No advantage at all (sound or latency) if you take the digital audio out of the Mac. Just unnecessary complication and expense.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1983524 - 11/06/12 05:25 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
@Macy: Thanks. I got it open. My session doesn't start for another 2 hours. But when I open their app, I don't have the sound card field or any of the other stuff. I just have the latency drop down. Is this right?

Screenshot: http://d.pr/i/Ys4g

Top
#1983565 - 11/06/12 08:44 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
I was able to get try-sound working once the session started. It wasn't loud but I could hear the difference. I'm going to purchase it and later get a dedicated laptop for the MP10. Thanks.

Top
#1983743 - 11/07/12 12:08 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
Thanks. I didn't know about the iLok issue. So you guys leaves this goofy key plugged into your machines all the time? Plus it's another $50 for nothing.

Is there anything comparable to the Steinway used in Ivory II's American Concert D that doesn't require a USB key?

What would be a reason to not get Steinberg The Grand 3 instead of Ivory II American Concert D?


Edited by brettr (11/07/12 12:29 PM)

Top
#1983749 - 11/07/12 12:51 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
All of the Ivory version 2 pianos require the Ilok key. That's one of the reasons I stayed with the older version 1.5, which did not require Ilok.

Another reason I did not buy Ivory v2 is that I bought Vintage D (and others) that I like immensely.

As for Steinberg The Grand 3 ... I've not seen any mention of it here, nor heard any samples/demos. Have you? What are your impressions?

Top
#1983767 - 11/07/12 01:25 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
There isn't much on the Steinberg The Grand 3. Lots more of people playing Ivory II American Concert D. I'm guessing Ivory II's American Concert D is top of the line?

By the way, I really like what I've heard coming from Ivory II. I just don't like the iLok nonsense. But if that is the only way to get the best virtual piano, I have no choice.


Edited by brettr (11/07/12 01:28 PM)

Top
#1983770 - 11/07/12 01:27 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: brettr
Thanks. I didn't know about the iLok issue. So you guys leaves this goofy key plugged into your machines all the time? Plus it's another $50 for nothing.

Is there anything comparable to the Steinway used in Ivory II's American Concert D that doesn't require a USB key?

What would be a reason to not get Steinberg The Grand 3 instead of Ivory II American Concert D?


Yeah, the iLok sucks. I don't use any iLok pianos, which include all the Ivory pianos. Besides costing extra money, I find it offensive that they require us to buy an expensive and inconvenient copy-protection mechanism. There are a number of audio software products that require the iLok. Apparently piracy is really big in the audio realm or something.

As an alternative, you can get Galaxy. You can buy Galaxy Vintage D, which is a very much beloved piano here. The Galaxy suite itself is pretty good too, or you can buy the pianos individually for like $150 or less each (download only). Is it comparable to Ivory? Yes, though Ivory is newer (I think) and probably has an edge in the reviews. At least, Ivory appears to have a larger advertising budget and larger file sizes, for whatever those things are worth.

Personally I just use Vintage D. It seems that everyone who buys it comes back and reports that they love it without qualification, so I'm always confident recommending it. In a recent thread we had a piece played on Vintage D and American D (among others) and to me and others Vintage D sounded better. American D is definitely cutting edge technologically (and brand new) but whether it's actually a better piano has yet to be established. Vintage D is already kind of a classic.


Edited by gvfarns (11/07/12 01:32 PM)

Top
#1983781 - 11/07/12 01:48 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Macy]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: Macy
MacMacMac is trying to be helpful but the diagram shows an external sound card. There is no reason to use an external sound card in this way with a Mac. That is PC thinking. Correct me if I'm wrong MacMacMac, but despite your name you are a PC user, right?

Run the USB to Host connection from the MP10 to a Mac USB input directly. Run the digital audio output from the Mac directly to the audio receiver that is shown in the diagram directly. No sound card. Also according to the MP10 manual, the built-in Mac USB/MIDI driver works, so you don't even load an external driver for that keyboard.


PC's do often have inferior latency characteristics and are often benefited by the addition of a USB interface simply because it will come with a better driver. More powerful PC's and Macs sometimes have good enough built-in drivers and hardware to have good latency when running directly from the board.

However it should be remembered that external audio interfaces also often feature superior DAC and other hardware. Of particular note is that they may have better headphone amplifiers, which can make a difference when listening with high-end, high-impedance headphones. They also have convenient things like analog volume control, good ADC, MIDI-IN, etc.

But I guess I do think that it's better to start with direct connections and only get an external interface if you find that you need one or if you suffer from an acute case of gear acquisition syndrome. My impression is that a large proportion of forum members do use external interfaces, partially because we love the gear.

Top
#1983811 - 11/07/12 03:36 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: gvfarns]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: gvfarns
PC's do often have inferior latency characteristics and are often benefited by the addition of a USB interface simply because it will come with a better driver. More powerful PC's and Macs sometimes have good enough built-in drivers and hardware to have good latency when running directly from the board.

There are no latency issues with a Mac, although you might be able to create one using external USB audio interfaces and 3rd party written drivers.

Originally Posted By: gvfarns
However it should be remembered that external audio interfaces also often feature superior DAC and other hardware. Of particular note is that they may have better headphone amplifiers, which can make a difference when listening with high-end, high-impedance headphones. They also have convenient things like analog volume control, good ADC, MIDI-IN, etc.


The original diagram I commented on showed an analog audio output from an external sound card fed to the analog input of an A/V receiver. It is extremely unlikely that a cheap external USB audio card is going to have better DAC/analog output circuitry than a decent A/V receiver, and of course good A/V receivers will have extremely good DAC/analog output circuits. The same can be said about any other part of the audio chain including a headphone output, etc. Of course one can spend thousands of dollars on external audio equipment in the form of external DACs, A/V preamps, etc.

Originally Posted By: gvfarns
But I guess I do think that it's better to start with direct connections and only get an external interface if you find that you need one or if you suffer from an acute case of gear acquisition syndrome. My impression is that a large proportion of forum members do use external interfaces, partially because we love the gear.


I expect a large proportion of forum members also use PCs, which it seems explains the reason for using external interfaces. I'm not immune to the love of gear. On the contrary, (simply to illustrate the point and not to brag) I have 10's of thousands of dollars of equipment and speakers for hi-fi and home theater purposes, and a $20K+ Audio Precision Dual Domain Audio Analyzer for test measurement purposes. But I still don't use an external USB audio interface on any of my Macs for anything.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1983825 - 11/07/12 04:28 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
slowtraveler Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/14/12
Posts: 202
Loc: Chicago, IL USA
Originally Posted By: brettr
... I use the headphones so won't need to go with an external speaker setup.


Since the OP says above that he primarily uses headphones, I believe he will certainly want an external DAC/amplifier of some kind. Either using the MBP's digital output as @Macy suggests if he wants to connect his headphones to a nearby AV receiver, or monitoring via a good external USB interface, will give much better results than headphone monitoring via the Mac's native analog output, IMO.

B.

Top
#1984003 - 11/08/12 04:27 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
Gigantoad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/02/12
Posts: 336
Mac internal soundcard is better than most PC's so there may be less need to get an external solution. However, saying that there wouldn't be any benefits in doing so is a bit misleading. Most every proffessional I've encountered uses an external interface like a RME fireface or similiar. Better connectivity, possibly less latency and certainly better sound quality. How much a cheap USB card would increase quality is a valid question though.

For home use and just for playing the piano with its limited dynamic range, Mac internal sound is probably enough. Also worth mentioning that PC desktop users can also buy an internal soundcard that usually has even less latency and similiar sound quality unless they are cheaply made and not shielded enough (more prone to picking up interference noise from other components in the PC).

Top
#1984074 - 11/08/12 09:24 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
@gvfarns: Does the Galaxy Vintage D have any lag or popping issues when using the sustaining pedal. I've read this is an issue with Galaxy and not Ivory II.

Also, does the Galaxy player software tend to peg the cpu?

Top
#1984090 - 11/08/12 10:01 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
I run Vintage D in Kontakt on an old, lame laptop. No problems with latency nor with CPU utilization.

The first release of Vintage D has some odd behaviors. These were fixed in an update over a year ago.

Top
#1984094 - 11/08/12 10:12 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
Thanks Mac. Since I have a Macbook Pro, I should have no issues going USB to USB and bypassing all of the midi stuff? I plan to record sound and not as interested in midi (yet).

Top
#1984101 - 11/08/12 10:25 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
USB-to-USB is as simple as it gets. You should be good to go.

Top
#1984108 - 11/08/12 10:42 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
kwyn Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/27/12
Posts: 11
Vintage D is awesome. However one issue, not a big one cause I don't use them that much, but the pushing or letting go of the sustain pedal while holding a note or chord will kill the pads. Not sure why.

However, vintage D comes with the old vintage D instrument too, and it works fine.

Top
#1984111 - 11/08/12 10:49 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
Thanks but what are pads?

If anyone knows, is the difference between Vintage D and Ivory II American Concert D negligible? That's what it sounds like. I just want to stay away from iLok if possible. And if Vintage D performs well (no logging or cpu spikes), which it sounds like it does, then probably Ivory II doesn't have any edge over it.

The above being said, I use the sustaining pedal for nearly everything I play. Most songs I play have the sustaining pedal engaged the entire time. Will that be an issue with Vintage D?

Top
#1984113 - 11/08/12 10:55 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
kwyn Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/27/12
Posts: 11
Pads in Vintage D are just a layering of strings or voices behind the piano sound. Most likely you won't use them if you don't know what they are. I hardly do either.

If you're looking for a great piano sound Vintage D is awesome. Your sustain pedal should work just fine.

Top
#1984121 - 11/08/12 11:15 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: brettr
Thanks but what are pads?

If anyone knows, is the difference between Vintage D and Ivory II American Concert D negligible? That's what it sounds like. I just want to stay away from iLok if possible. And if Vintage D performs well (no logging or cpu spikes), which it sounds like it does, then probably Ivory II doesn't have any edge over it.

The above being said, I use the sustaining pedal for nearly everything I play. Most songs I play have the sustaining pedal engaged the entire time. Will that be an issue with Vintage D?


I wouldn't say the difference between Vintage D and Ivory II is negligible. They are quite different in the way they sound and sometimes the way they perform. But you can't unambiguously say which is better. In that sense, the difference in quality between them could be negligible. I know people who prefer Ivory and I know many people who prefer Vintage D.

To answer your other questions, Vintage D is not particularly prone to popping or clicking. It also uses very little CPU and hard drive speed (it has very good streaming technology). I use it on a very old, weak, underclocked computer and I never have performance issues of any kind. There is also no issue with the sustain on Vintage D. It works great and doesn't particularly tax your computer. There's an indicator for how much CPU and hard drive it is using and it almost never gets above the lowest levels.

Some people have complained that the sustain kicks in when the pedal is pushed pretty far down, while it kicks in higher for Ivory (or the other way around) but that's a very small detail and varies a lot between acoustic pianos. I don't consider it a deficiency.

Pads are a type of synthesized sound--a separate instrument from the piano. Most software pianos do not come with pads but for whatever reason, the Vintage D people threw some in. I don't know anyone besides the poster who mentioned it who has ever used the Vintage D pads (I have never used them myself) as they are not part of the piano.

Top
#1984128 - 11/08/12 11:37 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
@gvfarns: Excellent post. Thank you. I'm going with Vintage D.

There seems to be two places I can purchase. One is CD and the other is download. Do you know if there is any difference? I'll get the download if there isn't any difference.

CD @ $135 (free shipping): http://www.floridamusicco.com/proddetail~prod~galaxy_vintage_d.htm

Download @ $138.17: http://www.soundsondemand.com/detail2.asp/best_service_galaxy_pianos/piano_keyb/vintage_d/en/1

Top
#1984148 - 11/08/12 12:11 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
I bought from the Florida music co (which was selling through amazon at the time). There is no difference between the download and CD version. If you do the download, just make sure you save the file that you download somewhere safe in case you want to reinstall at a later point. In either case be sure to keep the serial number somewhere you can get to it later.

Vintage D is good stuff. Basically everyone likes it. There may be pianos some people like even better, but I have yet to run across someone who regretted Vintage D.

Top
#1984314 - 11/08/12 06:52 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Gigantoad]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
Mac internal soundcard is better than most PC's so there may be less need to get an external solution. However, saying that there wouldn't be any benefits in doing so is a bit misleading. Most every proffessional I've encountered uses an external interface like a RME fireface or similiar. Better connectivity, possibly less latency and certainly better sound quality. How much a cheap USB card would increase quality is a valid question though.

For home use and just for playing the piano with its limited dynamic range, Mac internal sound is probably enough. Also worth mentioning that PC desktop users can also buy an internal soundcard that usually has even less latency and similiar sound quality unless they are cheaply made and not shielded enough (more prone to picking up interference noise from other components in the PC).


I never mention the quality of the Mac's "internal sound card" (PC users like to refer to the Mac's DAC [digital to analog converter] and analog output circuitry as an "internal sound card"). I recommended using the standard digital audio output of a Mac.

You can get the digital audio out the Mac using either the direct digital audio interface (standard S/PDIF) or using USB or Firewire or Thunderbolt. Firewire is excellent for streaming digital audio and high quality Firewire audio interfaces are available (such as an Apogee Ensemble at about $2K or a higher priced Apogee Symphony I/O - the RME Firewire interface you mentioned is around the same $2K price).

Whether the DAC/audio circuitry in a $2K A/V receiver or preamp is better than a $2K Apogee is debatable. Both are certainly "good enough" and audiophile-like debates about such matters are a waste of time (at least a waste of my time). But an Apogee audio interface offers many other features that make it more desirable for professional applications.

However, feeding the direct S/PDIF digital audio directly from the Mac to a good quality A/V receiver instead of using a cheap USB 2.0 audio interface is a preferable solution for most users that already own a good digital A/V receiver or preamp, since its less expensive, avoids USB issues (real or imagined), avoids possible 3rd party software drivers, and likely has superior DACs and analog circuitry.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984319 - 11/08/12 07:02 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: gvfarns]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: gvfarns
I bought from the Florida music co (which was selling through amazon at the time).


I also bought the Vintage D from Florida Music with no problems.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984338 - 11/08/12 07:59 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Macy]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: Macy
Whether the DAC/audio circuitry in a $2K A/V receiver or preamp is better than a $2K Apogee is debatable


Wowser. Two THOUSAND dollars? If your equipment is at that level I'd say you would definitely want to let it do the digital-to-analog conversion.

I think I and others in this thread were still thinking along the lines of whether to do DAC on the computer motherboard or in a $150 USB interface. If cost scales with quality, neither are on the same page as what you are talking about.


Edited by gvfarns (11/08/12 08:00 PM)

Top
#1984340 - 11/08/12 08:04 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
I put together a few diagrams that illustrate the possible ways to connect a piano, a PC running piano libraries, and a sound system.
Basic connection using an internal sound card

Basic connection using an external sound card


Adding a mixer to allow use of both the piano libraries and the native piano sounds

Adding equalizers, four speakers instead of two, and a DVD player for CD play-along


Macy, Perhaps you could add one showing a digital audio connection between a PC/Mac and the sound system?

Top
#1984357 - 11/08/12 08:45 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: gvfarns]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: gvfarns
Originally Posted By: Macy
Whether the DAC/audio circuitry in a $2K A/V receiver or preamp is better than a $2K Apogee is debatable


Wowser. Two THOUSAND dollars? If your equipment is at that level I'd say you would definitely want to let it do the digital-to-analog conversion.

I think I and others in this thread were still thinking along the lines of whether to do DAC on the computer motherboard or in a $150 USB interface. If cost scales with quality, neither are on the same page as what you are talking about.


The RME Fireface 800 audio interface was mentioned by Gigantoad as having superior sound quality to the Mac's built-in DAC system. It retail's for $1999. I didn't bring up or suggest using any such thing. I simply mentioned the Apogee as a similar firewire product in the same $2K price range.

What I suggested was using the Mac's DIGITAL audio output to a "good" A/V receiver, which can be had for MUCH less than that, or costs nothing if you already have one around. But if you are going to suggest a $2000 Firewire interface than it is only fair to compare that against a similar priced A/V receiver or digital A/V preamp for sound quality. As I said, I won't get into a sound quality discussion here about components in that price range. That's when the audiophile discussions start to kick in, and they aren't appropriate for this forum (in my opinion).

Again, my original response was to suggest using the owners A/V Receiver with DIGITAL output from a Mac. NO external sound card. NO built-in to the Mac DAC. No cost to a user that already has an A/V Receiver. For most users with a decent A/V Receiver that will likely provide better D/A conversion and better audio output circuits than those in a cheap (few hundred dollars) external audio interface (or the built-into the Mac DAC/analog audio - which I did NOT recommend). And I'm talking about Macs, which is what the original poster of this thread has. I don't concern myself with what PC users do or don't do.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984361 - 11/08/12 08:54 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: MacMacMac]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: MacMacMac
Macy, Perhaps you could add one showing a digital audio connection between a PC/Mac and the sound system?


Really? A diagram? Connect the USB to Host from the keyboard to the Mac USB for MIDI signals. Connect the digital audio out of the Mac to a digital audio input of the Receiver.

Optional - Connect analog audio output from the keyboard to an analog input on the receiver if you want the native keyboard audio.

Use the AVR receiver for equalization, 4 speakers, 8 speakers, subs, a DVD player, concerts on TV, auto equalization/speaker calibration, or whatever.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984371 - 11/08/12 09:08 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
Given that people are posing questions about how to do these things, I think it's fair to assume that a diagram would help. It seems you don't agree.

Anyway, I'm off to the supermarket for some dip ... for the chip on your shoulder. smile

Top
#1984374 - 11/08/12 09:16 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: MacMacMac]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: MacMacMac
Given that people are posing questions about how to do these things, I think it's fair to assume that a diagram would help. It seems you don't agree.

Anyway, I'm off to the supermarket for some dip ... for the chip on your shoulder. smile


Well I feel like I'm getting hammered here for also just trying to help.

I suggest a solution that cost NOTHING if you already have an A/V receiver hanging around, and the next thing I know it's suggested that I proposed using a $2K receiver.

I suggest using DIGITAL audio from a Mac, and someone argues to me that a $2K external interface is better than the ANALOG audio from a Mac.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984387 - 11/08/12 09:54 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
Purchased Vintage D and installed. Here is a comparison:

Vintage D:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/zwsdp8zff35p5al/Kontakt%205%2020121108%201912.1.mp3

Straight MP10:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/kzqmlraiyr5tnmg/Audio-022s.mp3

I'm very pleased with the Vintage D sound pretty much straight out of the box. I have lots of learning to do with it. But it is far better than the straight MP10. Of course this is all personal preference. I'm mainly interested in acoustic artifacts. Not noises (hammer, pedal) that most refer to but other things such as weird resonance and string sounds that even experience players just don't hear. Guess my ear is weird in that sense. You can hear some of this at the very end of the Vintage D recording when the pedal is lifted. The Vintage D sounds more warm and stable in those recordings. That song (part of a piano arrangement for 'Lunar Industries') is particularly good since it requires this kind of double play on certain notes that creates an echo sound. Creating that sound is much easier with Vintage D. I'll keep adjusting Vintage D until I get it closer and closer to the sound I'm looking for. But so far so good.

I also noticed that the MP10 recording has some background static that I didn't noticed before. I used the MP10's USB slot for that recording. For the Vintage D recording, I used Audio Hijack but I did have to drop the file into iTunes then to dropbox before it every uploaded and played properly.

I'm going USB to USB and don't see any problems. I have no plans to drop $2k and not really sure what Macy is talking about. But I'm not familiar with that kind of setup. I'm very much a beginner with the virtual instruments.

For Vintage D, would there be any difference between a Macbook Air (with SSD drive) 1.7Ghz i5 vs 2.0Ghz i7?


Edited by brettr (11/08/12 09:56 PM)

Top
#1984388 - 11/08/12 09:55 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
Well, yes ... if you have a digital audio output and an AV receiver, that makes sense.

As for the quality of the sound ... I didn't have any problem with the (cheap) sound card in my (cheap) laptop, except for the latency, so I wouldn't use an external if I didn't need one for some other reason. And I don't doubt that ANY sound card will suit most anyone, save for the professional studio technician.

As for whether a $2000 interface is or is not better than a Mac (or PC) analog output ... who knows? Maybe dewster knows. But no one has offered anything to support that, and I can offer nothing either.

In the end, it is (for me) a moot point. I use an external card mainly for the improved latency. If I owned a Mac, I guess I would not need the external card. Or, if I had a modern PC, I'd likewise not need one. And if I had a Mac, I'd probably use that digital audio output, because my AV receiver has a digital audio input. (But I don't, so I cannot.)

Anyway ... any one of these solutions is more than adequate.

Top
#1984398 - 11/08/12 10:23 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: brettr
I'm going USB to USB and don't see any problems. I have no plans to drop $2k and not really sure what Macy is talking about.


Do you think I suggested a $2K interface? Can anyone read?
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984401 - 11/08/12 10:40 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Macy]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
Originally Posted By: Macy
Originally Posted By: brettr
I'm going USB to USB and don't see any problems. I have no plans to drop $2k and not really sure what Macy is talking about.


Do you think I suggested a $2K interface? Can anyone read?


I guess MacMacMac isn't back from the supermarket?

Top
#1984404 - 11/08/12 10:44 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: brettr
Originally Posted By: Macy
Originally Posted By: brettr
I'm going USB to USB and don't see any problems. I have no plans to drop $2k and not really sure what Macy is talking about.


Do you think I suggested a $2K interface? Can anyone read?


I guess MacMacMac isn't back from the supermarket?


I hope you get great Mac advice from the PC guys. You didn't know how to open the Try-sound application and they recommended you buy an external audio interface for your Mac. Lot's of luck.

I'm out of here.


Edited by Macy (11/08/12 10:53 PM)
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984414 - 11/08/12 11:38 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: brettr
I'm very pleased with the Vintage D sound pretty much straight out of the box. I have lots of learning to do with it. But it is far better than the straight MP10. Of course this is all personal preference. I'm mainly interested in acoustic artifacts. Not noises (hammer, pedal) that most refer to but other things such as weird resonance and string sounds that even experience players just don't hear. Guess my ear is weird in that sense. You can hear some of this at the very end of the Vintage D recording when the pedal is lifted. The Vintage D sounds more warm and stable in those recordings. That song (part of a piano arrangement for 'Lunar Industries') is particularly good since it requires this kind of double play on certain notes that creates an echo sound. Creating that sound is much easier with Vintage D. I'll keep adjusting Vintage D until I get it closer and closer to the sound I'm looking for. But so far so good.

I also noticed that the MP10 recording has some background static that I didn't noticed before. I used the MP10's USB slot for that recording. For the Vintage D recording, I used Audio Hijack but I did have to drop the file into iTunes then to dropbox before it every uploaded and played properly.

I'm going USB to USB and don't see any problems. I have no plans to drop $2k and not really sure what Macy is talking about. But I'm not familiar with that kind of setup. I'm very much a beginner with the virtual instruments.

For Vintage D, would there be any difference between a Macbook Air (with SSD drive) 1.7Ghz i5 vs 2.0Ghz i7?


I'm glad it's working out for you. It sounds good. By default some of the settings in the noises section are a hit high. Sympathetic resonance, hammer noises, etc. You might try turning them down...it's likely to fix the complaint you have (I've heard it a bunch of times from people playing Vintage D for the first time, actually). Noises like that are selling points because they do technically add to richness, but in practice a little goes a long way.

Macy is saying that Macs typically have a digital audio output and if you are using a receiver with it, you can plug it in and it may do better than onboard audio cards or even external interfaces will do. I'm not sure which models have this feature, but you might check it out if you have a good receiver. Otherwise you can just ignore it.

As for which computer to use, I'm not sure how much I can help except to say that these software pianos typically either work or they don't. If they work on a low end system, there's usually no upside to using a higher end system. I'm still using a Core 2 Duo with a crusty old hard drive and very little RAM and I'm not sure I'm going to change that any time soon.


Edited by gvfarns (11/08/12 11:39 PM)

Top
#1984420 - 11/08/12 11:56 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
brettr Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 33
Thanks. I like all strange noises acoustics produce. I've set the Vintage D to Grand and it sounds even better.

I appreciate Macy's help. I don't have a receiver but I think just the Macbook Pro will work fine. I can probably get away with a little older used Macbook Air if you are using a 2 Duo.

Here's a sample of a real acoustic making some of those strange noises:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/nlgvmxxytia9fhd/resonance.mp3

It's two clips in one file. The noise I'm after is in the background and you have to really listen. But it is some sort of resonance. It builds up really good at :03 and bends into :04. Then in the second part, it gets very distinct and makes this whistling noise at :07 that cuts off quickly at :07 as well. I imagine the player lifted the pedal. This is all happening because they are holding down the sustaining pedal. Do you have any ideas about that sound?

In my experience, most people don't hear it. I believe it comes from the same source. I'd like to try and dial in the Vintage D into it.

Top
#1984440 - 11/09/12 01:22 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
Gigantoad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/02/12
Posts: 336
Macy, you seem to have an awful lot of preconceptions about PC users. Just because I said "Mac internal sound card" doesn't mean I always refer to it like that, nor does it mean that every PC user does so. I'm quite aware that it's not a "card", so please forgive the false information. It's just that I grew up with sound cards in a time when mainboards didn't have any integrated sound yet and there were no external audio interfaces. So I guess it slips out every now and then.

I find your suggested setup using an A/V receiver a bit odd. Of course I can't be sure but I think most people won't have such a receiver anywhere near their computer. I have one in the living room, wired up to a home cinema system and the TV but my PC/laptop and DP aren't anywhere close to that. Not to mention (this is at least true for my setup), this is optimized for cinema and isn't that great for music.

Top
#1984457 - 11/09/12 02:23 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Gigantoad]
RafaPolit Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/20/11
Posts: 263
Loc: Quito, Ecuador
Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
Macy, you seem to have an awful lot of preconceptions about PC users...

I was going to write when I read this comment, which more or less sums up everything I was going to write in a long post! smile

@Macy, phrases like: "There is no reason to use an external sound card in this way with a Mac. That is PC thinking", there are several PCs more powerful out there than your Mac, with different configurations, and there are certainly Mac with less high specs... and LOTS of professionals that use external sound cards on MACs. So its not a brand thing, but a case-by-case scenario. Audio cards or onboard audio are also a motherboard case-by-case scenario.

Perhaps it would be much more 'neutral' to not label people as having preconceptions (like "that's PC thinking") and just stating the helpful info that you have provided between the down-looking-at-PC-users comments? Why is it that every Mac owner (including the Mac designers!) thinks he needs to label the PC guy (remember the 'hey, I'm a Mac... hey, I'm a PC' commercials?) and then talk down the PC equipment in order to feel great about the Mac equipment? Aren't we past that point? By the way, PC users can give great MAC advice as you would probably be able to offer great PC advice now that most applications, files and settings are cross platform (and Macs are using Intel chips, which, by the way, they spoke ill of until they decided to use them themselves!).

@Brettr, I'm happy you are finding the Vintage D to your liking. I myself are now much in love with it smile . It took some getting used to playing again with the onboard sound... it certainly feels a bit 'less' now.

Good luck,
Rafa.





Edited by RafaPolit (11/09/12 02:26 AM)
_________________________
Roland FP-7F

Top
#1984470 - 11/09/12 03:10 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: brettr]
Gigantoad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/02/12
Posts: 336
By the way: most PC mainboards with onboard sound have digital outputs as well. I fail to see what is Mac-specific here.

Edit: ok, that is rich. After some googling I just found that Macs use the same damned Realtek chips that are found on PC mainboards.

Edit2: more on topic, I tried Native Instruments "The Giant" yesterday and have to agree with Mac, it's really nice. I'm still getting to grips with it but I like what I've heard so far. Especially like the long decay times that can be achieved, something that I always found a bit lacking in most sampled pianos.

So that may be another option for you. It's fairly cheap at 99 Euros and can be downloaded directly from Native Instruments.


Edited by Gigantoad (11/09/12 03:44 AM)

Top
#1984487 - 11/09/12 04:48 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Gigantoad]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
Macy, you seem to have an awful lot of preconceptions about PC users. Just because I said "Mac internal sound card" doesn't mean I always refer to it like that, nor does it mean that every PC user does so. I'm quite aware that it's not a "card", so please forgive the false information. It's just that I grew up with sound cards in a time when mainboards didn't have any integrated sound yet and there were no external audio interfaces. So I guess it slips out every now and then.


My only relevant preconceptions about PC users is that they often use an external interface and often refer to Macs having an "internal sound card".

But I could care less if you call the Mac DAC/audio circuitry an "internal sound card" or not. I don't know any Mac users that call it that because it has never been a user replaceable card in a Mac, so I simply wanted to clarify for the original poster (a Mac user) what you (and many other PC users) refer to when you said Mac "internal sound card". And that was a DAC (digital to audio converter) and its associated ANALOG audio output circuitry.

That is important because I never mentioned or recommended using the internal Mac DAC or Mac ANALOG audio circuitry in my earlier comments in this thread. My recommendation was to use the DIGITAL output of the Mac. I made no comment whatsoever about the Mac DAC/analog audio circuitry, but you argued that my comments about not needing an external interface were wrong because an external interface would provide better sound quality than the Mac internal ANALOG audio output soundcard. i.e. I recommended eating a pear and you said I was wrong because an orange tastes better than a tangerine. Your argument that I was wrong had nothing to do with what I recommended. But unless the original poster understood what you meant by the Mac internal soundcard he wouldn't understand that your argument had nothing to do with what I recommended.

Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
I find your suggested setup using an A/V receiver a bit odd. Of course I can't be sure but I think most people won't have such a receiver anywhere near their computer. I have one in the living room, wired up to a home cinema system and the TV but my PC/laptop and DP aren't anywhere close to that. Not to mention (this is at least true for my setup), this is optimized for cinema and isn't that great for music.


This is why I am so pissed by this thread. I was NOT the person that recommended using a receiver in the first place. I responded to the recommendation and diagrams provided by MacMacMac that showed an external interface (DAC) and a RECEIVER in HIS recommended setup. I responded to that diagram with the following:

Quote:
There is no reason to use an external sound card in this way with a Mac. That is PC thinking.


It is quite common with PCs to use an external sound card as a DAC and then feed the analog output of the external sound card to a receiver, power amplifier, powered speakers, or to headphones. But all Macs have a digital audio S/PDIF output. So with a Mac there is no reason to send digital audio over USB to an external soundcard and then feed the analog audio from the soundcard to an A/V receiver. You can simply connect the digital audio output of the Mac directly to the A/V receiver. The soundcard in the loop between the Mac and the A/V receiver serves NO PURPOSE unless the external soundcard has a better DAC and audio circuits than the receiver, and as I said it is unlikely that a cheap $150+ external interface will have a better DAC and analog audio circuitry than even a "merely good" A/V receiver. So my comment was aimed at the unnecessary addition of an external interface between the Mac and the A/V Receiver in another person's recommended setup.

Having said that, there is nothing wrong with using an A/V receiver in a personal setup if you have one (and lots of people I know have an extra receiver hanging around after they upgrade their audio or home theater equipment), or want to buy one and use non-powered speakers rather than purchasing powered speakers to run from the output of an external interface. A decent A/V receiver will likely have multiple audio advantages (EQ/calibration etc) over an external interface, and be less expensive and more versatile if you take into account the additional cost of powered speakers and a more limited selection of powered speakers.

Finally, you brought up using a $2000 "professional quality" external firewire interface in a professional setting. I NEVER recommended anyone use a $2000 interface (or a $2000 receiver), but I agreed there were legitimate reasons for using such a product in a professional situation. But whether or not a $2000 external firewire interface would produce any better sound than an equivalently priced expensive A/V receiver is debatable, but not something I would debate here.


Edited by Macy (11/09/12 06:13 AM)
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984496 - 11/09/12 05:59 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: RafaPolit]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: RafaPolit
Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
Macy, you seem to have an awful lot of preconceptions about PC users...

I was going to write when I read this comment, which more or less sums up everything I was going to write in a long post! smile

@Macy, phrases like: "There is no reason to use an external sound card in this way with a Mac. That is PC thinking", there are several PCs more powerful out there than your Mac, with different configurations, and there are certainly Mac with less high specs... and LOTS of professionals that use external sound cards on MACs. So its not a brand thing, but a case-by-case scenario. Audio cards or onboard audio are also a motherboard case-by-case scenario.


It's completely irrelevant that there are PCs with lessor, the same, or more powerful hardware than any particular Mac. The OP's question was how to setup his Mac, not a PC. It is irrelevant that there are professionals that use external sound cards on Macs (as I said earlier there are reasons for using external firewire cards on Macs in a professional setting). The OP is not using the Mac in a professional situation. Everything you say above is true and irrelevant to the OP's question about how to set up his Mac.

MacMacMac responded to the OP's original question with the suggestion to place an external USB interface between his Mac and an A/V receiver. I wrote that the USB interface was unnecessary and provided no advantage when used in this way, i.e. when placed between the Mac and an A/V receiver. And yes, lots of PC users do exactly as suggested by MacMacMac, so it does come from PC thinking because it is not necessary with any Mac because they all have S/PDIF digital audio outputs. It provides no advantage when connected to an A/V receiver as in MacMacMac's diagram (unless the interface has a better DAC/headphone output than the A/V Receiver - which is highly unlikely for a $150 USB interface).

The fact that there are legitimate reasons for using an external interface with a Mac in a professional installation (as I agreed) is irrelevant to the OP's situation and to MacMacMac's recommended setup which included an A/V Receiver.


Originally Posted By: RafaPolit
Perhaps it would be much more 'neutral' to not label people as having preconceptions (like "that's PC thinking") and just stating the helpful info that you have provided between the down-looking-at-PC-users comments? Why is it that every Mac owner (including the Mac designers!) thinks he needs to label the PC guy (remember the 'hey, I'm a Mac... hey, I'm a PC' commercials?) and then talk down the PC equipment in order to feel great about the Mac equipment? Aren't we past that point?


Apparently you aren't past this point. You took my comment, which simply reflects the fact that a lot of PC users put an external USB interface between a PC and A/V receiver (as suggested by MacMacMac - a PC user) as some sort of insult to PC users. It was simply meant to let the Mac user know that while this was common practice for PC users it is not necessary for a Mac user because his Mac has a direct S/PDIF digital audio output. There are countless examples of how things are done differently on a Mac (Mac thinking) versus a PC (PC thinking). How anyone should be offended as you obviously were, by pointing out a distinction relevant to the user's situation is beyond me.

Originally Posted By: RafaPolit
By the way, PC users can give great MAC advice as you would probably be able to offer great PC advice now that most applications, files and settings are cross platform (and Macs are using Intel chips, which, by the way, they spoke ill of until they decided to use them themselves!).


You seem to have some really hostile feelings related to Macs or Apple. But you are directing them at the wrong person. I use Windows and Macs constantly in my professional life. I owned the first IBM PC model ever produced in 1981 and the first Mac model ever produced in 1984. Until I finally started running Windows on my Macs, I've always had both current PCs and current Macs on my desks continuously ever since they were introduced. I do IC hardware, firmware, and software design under Windows and software design under Mac OS X. They are very different platforms. As an engineer I couldn't function without Windows and OS X so I can't relate to only-one-or-the-other hostility between the two platforms. I happen to use Mac OS X for my virtual piano related activities so I can comment and try to be helpful on these matters as they relate to Macs. I don't use Windows for virtual pianos so I wouldn't dare try to give advice to a PC user on this application.


Edited by Macy (11/09/12 06:11 AM)
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984504 - 11/09/12 06:25 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Gigantoad]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
By the way: most PC mainboards with onboard sound have digital outputs as well. I fail to see what is Mac-specific here


My advice is Mac specific. It was directed to a Mac user only. I have no idea if it would apply to some, none, or all current PCs. I don't try to keep track of PC hardware and I don't give advice to PC users about setting up their systems.
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
#1984515 - 11/09/12 07:17 AM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Macy]
Gigantoad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/02/12
Posts: 336
Originally Posted By: Macy
My advice is Mac specific. It was directed to a Mac user only. I have no idea if it would apply to some, none, or all current PCs. I don't try to keep track of PC hardware and I don't give advice to PC users about setting up their systems.


With all due respect, you said "that's PC thinking". How can you say such a thing after you admit you don't know much about PC technology? Besides, why is something "common practice for PC users" when one guy made a diagram? I know absoutely nobody nor have I ever heard of anyone who uses an A/V receiver as a DAC for their PC sound. Of course this may be just my own shortcoming.

People who use VST's are usually not far away from having a bit of a home studio. If you want to connect your DP and beside playing VST's maybe record the DP's own audio back into the computer, you want an audio interface that has such connectivity. An A/V receiver is just an alien piece in such a setup as it doesn't have any appropriate audio inputs for the signal to get back to the computer. It won't have midi ports either. It doesn't come with drivers and mixing/monitoring software either so it won't be fully integrated with the OS. It also has the wrong kind of connectors, usually cinch instead of the more commonly used jack or even XLR in studio equipment. Let's not even talk about portability for those with laptops: would you rather lug around an A/V receiver or a small, dedicated firewire or usb audio interface?

We're probably beating the dead horse by now, but I just found the sum of your arguments in these past posts a bit strange.

Top
#1984712 - 11/09/12 04:59 PM Re: How to connect Ivory II? [Re: Gigantoad]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
Originally Posted By: Macy
My advice is Mac specific. It was directed to a Mac user only. I have no idea if it would apply to some, none, or all current PCs. I don't try to keep track of PC hardware and I don't give advice to PC users about setting up their systems.


With all due respect,


I don't see any respect. You twist just about everything that I say.

Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
you said "that's PC thinking". How can you say such a thing after you admit you don't know much about PC technology?


I never said I don't know much about PC technology. I design software for use on PC's. I've used PC's since 1981 when they were introduced. I said I don't use PC's for virtual pianos and don't track which PC's include which hardware, which is a completely different thing than not knowing much about PC technology.

Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
Besides, why is something "common practice for PC users" when one guy made a diagram? I know absoutely nobody nor have I ever heard of anyone who uses an A/V receiver as a DAC for their PC sound. Of course this may be just my own shortcoming.


Again you twist what I said. I never said using a A/V receiver was common practice for PC users. I said using an external audio interface was common practice for PC users.

Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
People who use VST's are usually not far away from having a bit of a home studio. If you want to connect your DP and beside playing VST's maybe record the DP's own audio back into the computer, you want an audio interface that has such connectivity.


I reject your claim that people using VST's are usually not far from a home studio unless you mean something very simple that would never qualify as a studio. You brought up using a $2000 audio interface. I would agree if you start purchasing equipment in that range you might be (or should be) approaching a home studio. But simply connecting a DP to a computer to record the DP's analog audio doesn't a home studio make.

Congratulations you made my point again. Using an audio interface to simply record analog audio for home use is another example of "PC thinking". Many macs don't need an audio interface to record analog audio (some do). They do it directly through their audio line-in inputs. My Mac Pro, iMac, and Mac Mini all have ADC's on their audio line inputs. But you apparently don't know that since you are thinking about PC's and not Macs. If you need real studio quality audio recording then of course you use an audio interface, otherwise on many Macs just use the audio line-in for home quality.

Originally Posted By: Gigantoad
An A/V receiver is just an alien piece in such a setup ...

We're probably beating the dead horse by now, but I just found the sum of your arguments in these past posts a bit strange.


You are more than beating a dead horse. You continue to distort what I said to create an argument. You did it from the very beginning when you started this whole argument suggesting I was wrong about NOT using an external audio interface because a $2000 external audio interface has better quality DACs than the Macs built-in DAC. But it was very clear that I never suggested using the Mac's DAC in the first place. From your very first post you ignored that to create an argument that had NOTHING to do with what I said.

You also know I didn't recommend using an A/V receiver to create a "home studio" or any other kind of studio. So nothing you wrote about A/V receivers not working in a studio environment or for professional use applies to anything I said or recommended. You just create another argument that has NOTHING to do with what I said. Moreover, you ignored the fact that I agreed there were legitimate reasons for an external audio interface in such applications.

I recommended not using an external USB audio interface between a Mac and A/V Receiver (which was recommended by someone else). Everything else is just continued attempts to distort and twist what I said to have something to argue with. It's getting very tired.


Edited by Macy (11/09/12 05:03 PM)
_________________________
Macy

CVP-409GP, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere

Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >

Moderator:  Piano World 
What's Hot!!
Our latest Issue is available now...
Piano News - Interesting & Fun Piano Related Newsletter! (free)
-------------------
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Knabe Pianos
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
Who's Online
124 registered (ajames, Abby Pianoman, A Guy, aDino, 36251, 39 invisible), 1721 Guests and 21 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
75588 Members
42 Forums
156302 Topics
2295508 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Happy Birthday torquenale !!!!
by CarlosCC
Today at 08:26 AM
compositional methods
by Michael Sayers
Today at 08:03 AM
Happy Birthday earlofmar !!!!
by CarlosCC
Today at 04:49 AM
Tight Key ??
by moy71
Today at 01:15 AM
Learning progress
by sunnyday
Today at 01:10 AM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission