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#2008528 - 01/03/13 01:13 PM alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't
adak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/27/12
Posts: 282
Loc: Canada
so it has been said on this forum that pianoteq doesn't sound like a real piano. what are some alternatives? i would like to try them all.


Edited by adak (01/03/13 01:16 PM)
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#2008549 - 01/03/13 01:56 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
thercman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/15/12
Posts: 126
Loc: Spokane WA, United States
I am currently trying two.

Addictive Keys - http://www.xlnaudio.com/productline/2

Kawai EX Pro - http://acousticsamples.net/kawai-ex-pro

Of the two I like the sound of the Kawai better.
_________________________
NP2, Arturia Laboratory 61

Addictive Keys, Kawai EX Pro
Heil PR-40 Mic, Allen & Heath Mixer, Yamaha HS80

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#2008553 - 01/03/13 02:01 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3797
Loc: North Carolina
Pianoteq, you may know, has a demo. Most other piano software packages are NOT available as demos. This makes it difficult to assess the offerings. Those few that had demos (as of a couple of years ago) were crappy pianos, and the demos only made me glad I did NOT buy them.

There's an online live demo at try-sound.com. They offer online play-sessions that let you try several different pianos. But this service is difficult to use. The long internet latency interferes terribly, rendering it all quite useless to me.

There are plenty of recorded samples from the piano software makers and on You Tube, but those don't give a proper sense of the sound, and they offer no means to assess the responsiveness.

You'll frequently see here recommendations for the Galaxy Vintage D. It's among the best, I think. At $150 or so you can't go wrong. There is no demo software.

I also like the Galaxy Vienna Grand ... but, again, no demo.

I originally used Synthogy Ivory v1.5. It has four grand pianos: a German Steinway, a Bosie, a Fazioli, and a Yamaha. But my other pianos are much better so I've abandoned Ivory.

I've not tried Ivory v2 (or their American Grand), but Ivory is expensive (and, for me, unnecessary since I'm happy with the Galaxy pianos). Once again, no demos.

There are many more: Kawai EX Pro, Cinesamples Piano in Blue (discussed very recently in another thread), Garritan Steinway, Alicia's Keys (blah!), The Giant, Imperfect Samples Fazioli, Art Vista Virtual Grand, TruePianos ... and many more. So ... since you originally said "I would like to try them all" ... be prepared to pony up a few thousand dollars! smile

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#2008585 - 01/03/13 02:41 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
dmd Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1817
Loc: Pennsylvania
I have Pianoteq and a bunch of others, including Galaxy Vintage D and it has been my experience that none of these live up to whatever hype surrounds them. I liked all of them for a time but that never lasted. Apparently that is not the experience of many others on this forum since it appears they are completely happy with what they are hearing. I have not been so lucky.

It has not been for lack of trying, I assure you. Things have now evolved to where I have a reasonably good (meaning expensive) setup for sound production and delivery and still the result of generating sound with software products just does not please me.

I currently have the best sound I have ever produced and this has been stable for a couple of weeks. The major contributing factor to this was the purchase of the Kawai ES7 keyboard. It has a very nice internal sound and reasonably good speakers. I also purchased a pair of FOCAL CMS 40 powered monitors. I now run the sound from my ES7 out to a MIXER, do some EQing and then back through the powered monitors. I can leave it at that or layer it with some sound also through the ES7 speaker system. The combination often blends quite nicely to something pleasing to my ears. It probably could be improved with better (meaning more expensive) components (i.e. mixer, monitors) but for now it works for me.

As for the software products (Pianoteq,Vintage D,etc ...), I can run them through this same system and I just do not like what I hear. So, software might be the answer but maybe not. In my case, it hasn't worked out.
_________________________
Don

Current: ES7, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio device, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Racvenscroft275, Ivory II American Concert D

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#2008713 - 01/03/13 08:27 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
Bane Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/03/12
Posts: 91
Loc: USA
Large sampled piano libraries are the best as for the sound quality (over modelled), no doubt. But if you are looking for quick load times Addictive Keys is supposed to have a load time more around the speed of Pianoteq's, although I think it was sampled? Small library I guess.

So fast-loading libraries like Addictive Keys and Pianoteq are good for songwriting and DAW sessions where you wanna get in there and get your creativity down fast, and yet better than the lousy piano sounds included in your DAW. Then later you can load up your performance into one of your better, larger sample libraries for better quality. Unfortunately I don't have the luxury of this setup, yet...
_________________________
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Cable-Nelson upright piano, Casio WK-200, Mackie MR5MK2 monitors, Cubase Artist 7, Steinberg's The Grand 3, Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 interface, Asus R500a-RS52 Windows 8, i5-3230M 2.6 gHz, 6GB RAM, 750GB HD (5400RPM)

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#2008837 - 01/04/13 03:50 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
o0Ampy0o Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/18/12
Posts: 473

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#2008841 - 01/04/13 04:34 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: dmd]
EO3 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/01/11
Posts: 142
Originally Posted By: dmd
I can run them through this same system and I just do not like what I hear. So, software might be the answer but maybe not. In my case, it hasn't worked out.


But can't the same be said also about acoustic pianos? Different people prefer different pianos. I think ultimately if we want to try to evaluate each piano in an objective way, first we have to establish, what's the end goal (playability, the best sound or a healthy mix of both).

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#2008856 - 01/04/13 05:54 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
Irmin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/12/12
Posts: 7
Loc: South Africa
Originally Posted By: adak
so it has been said on this forum that pianoteq doesn't sound like a real piano. what are some alternatives? i would like to try them all.


I think the first thing that you need to do is make a decision to 'like what you like' and 'dislike what you dislike'. There are lots of people with different opinions, big egos, small egos etc etc on a forum such as this one. If you buy TruePianos and you think that it sounds and plays like the most amazing thing you have ever heard/played. Then keep it and use it. If other people tell you are wrong, it sounds poor, artificial so what.

I happen to like pianoteq. I like how it plays although it doesn't sound quite real to me. Imagine playing a real piano: the notes pop out as big 3D chocolate quavers, semi-quavers, crotchets etc. When you play pianoteq the notes pop out just the same but they have been laminated in plastic :-) Dunno how else to describe it.

Vintage D sounds better to me and I use it as well, but sometimes it doesn't feel quite as expressive as pianoteq.

So play the pianoteq demo, if you like it buy the stage version. If you don't maybe buy Vintage D, its not expensive.

Irmin
_________________________
Acoustic: Restored Blüthner Grand - 1889
Keyboards: Korg M3-88, Korg Radius, Korg Trinity
Software: Pianoteq Stage+Blüthner addon, Vintage D, 4Front TruePianos, VILabs True Keys American
I need: Kawai VPC1

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#2008863 - 01/04/13 06:51 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: Irmin]
sullivang Online   blank
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2202
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Originally Posted By: Irmin
Imagine playing a real piano: the notes pop out as big 3D chocolate quavers, semi-quavers, crotchets etc. When you play pianoteq the notes pop out just the same but they have been laminated in plastic :-)


That's such a cute way of describing Pianoteq's shortcomings - I love it. smile

Greg.

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#2008874 - 01/04/13 07:47 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3797
Loc: North Carolina
I have to agree with that, regarding Pianoteq. But their latest, the Bluthner, is quite good. It's easily their best effort yet.

Unlike the rest of the Pianoteq stuff, this one is enough to make me think that maybe modeling has a chance.

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#2008878 - 01/04/13 08:10 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: Irmin]
bfb Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/11
Posts: 539
Loc: Atlanta GA USA
Originally Posted By: Irmin
Originally Posted By: adak
so it has been said on this forum that pianoteq doesn't sound like a real piano. what are some alternatives? i would like to try them all.


I think the first thing that you need to do is make a decision to 'like what you like' and 'dislike what you dislike'. There are lots of people with different opinions, big egos, small egos etc etc on a forum such as this one. If you buy TruePianos and you think that it sounds and plays like the most amazing thing you have ever heard/played. Then keep it and use it. If other people tell you are wrong, it sounds poor, artificial so what.

I happen to like pianoteq. I like how it plays although it doesn't sound quite real to me. Imagine playing a real piano: the notes pop out as big 3D chocolate quavers, semi-quavers, crotchets etc. When you play pianoteq the notes pop out just the same but they have been laminated in plastic :-) Dunno how else to describe it.

Vintage D sounds better to me and I use it as well, but sometimes it doesn't feel quite as expressive as pianoteq.

So play the pianoteq demo, if you like it buy the stage version. If you don't maybe buy Vintage D, its not expensive.

Irmin


+1. Pianoteq is very playable, just not all that recordable for non-classical music. But i think its a great little company that keeps moving forward in its offerings. I really like Ivory 2's German Grand and American Grand but i guess i'm a steinway homer- i just find these two to be a very usable combination of believable playing and recording in a sampled piano. I also like Vintage D- not quite as much but that's just personal opinion- and in my opinion the Vintage D is the best value proposition in the sample piano market and a no-brainer at $150.

It really is purely individual ear preference. There are many acoustic recordings on youtube that i just can't stand. when i hear a hardened felt hammer, detuned grand i just want to pull a Jerry Lee Lewis and douse it with lighter fluid. To me, i'd much prefer to hear an in-tune digital sample than an out-of-tune acoustic. but some folks really like the harmonics and resonances of a de-tuned piano, and who am i to argue with them (unless they are trying to sell me their recordings). And many others find the resonance limitations of sampled pianos to be off-putting no matter how many GB's of sampled sound the program contains. you just got to develop your own opinions about this stuff.


Edited by bfb (01/04/13 08:10 AM)
_________________________

Steinway M; Roland V-Piano; Yamaha P250; Roland FP 5
Ivory II Grands, Italian, American D; Galaxy Vintage D; Alicia's Keys; Garritan Steinway; Galaxy Pianos; The Grand 3

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#2008890 - 01/04/13 08:47 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: MacMacMac]
Hookxs Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/02/13
Posts: 247
Loc: Czech Republic
Originally Posted By: MacMacMac
I have to agree with that, regarding Pianoteq. But their latest, the Bluthner, is quite good. It's easily their best effort yet.
...


Is the Bluthner available in demo? (and if I only have Pianoteq demo)

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#2008901 - 01/04/13 09:37 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
dmd Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1817
Loc: Pennsylvania
I use Pianoteq as a change of pace, periodically. I turn the volume down on the Bluthner (Player) model and it can sound very nice for some lights-down-low jazz through phones.

Or I might blend the Pianoteq sound through my monitors with my ES7 sounbd through my ES7 built-in speakers, very lightly. The various options are endless. It seems I need this variation periodically to keep the sounds fresh.

I rarely even try the other software products I have anymore. For me, they just are not particularly pleasing or interesting.



Edited by dmd (01/04/13 09:51 AM)
_________________________
Don

Current: ES7, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio device, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Racvenscroft275, Ivory II American Concert D

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#2008905 - 01/04/13 09:46 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3797
Loc: North Carolina
Hookxs: Yes, the Pianoteq demo includes Bluthner.

bfb: This is spurious:
Originally Posted By: bfb
I'd much prefer to hear an in-tune digital sample than an out-of-tune acoustic.
That's like saying you prefer a shiny new Toyota Corolla to a run-down, blown-engine, rusted-out, up-on-blocks Ferrari. At least the former goes, the latter not. But I don't think that's what's meant when someone compares a Corolla to a Ferrari.

Likewise, setting such conditions is not relevant when comparing acoustic pianos to digital.

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#2008910 - 01/04/13 09:56 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: Hookxs]
kurtie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/06/10
Posts: 207
Originally Posted By: Irmin
I happen to like pianoteq. I like how it plays although it doesn't sound quite real to me. Imagine playing a real piano: the notes pop out as big 3D chocolate quavers, semi-quavers, crotchets etc. When you play pianoteq the notes pop out just the same but they have been laminated in plastic :-) Dunno how else to describe it.

Vintage D sounds better to me and I use it as well, but sometimes it doesn't feel quite as expressive as pianoteq.


+1

I am in the same boat. I also have Pianoteq and Vintage D. From the first one I like its playability. From the second one I like the sound. So it is a tradeoff. For playing I use Pianoteq (I mean, when I cannot play the upright... my preferred one smile )... for recording (I only record something from time to time) I use Vintage.


Originally Posted By: Hookxs
Is the Bluthner available in demo? (and if I only have Pianoteq demo)


Yes it is. Download the last Pianoteq demo and you will get a demo of all of its pianos including the Bluthner. I have Pianoteq 4 but not the Bluthner frown ... IMHO is the best sounding piano they have released to date... they are improving with each release.

Regards,
Kurt.-


Edited by kurtie (01/04/13 09:58 AM)

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#2008923 - 01/04/13 10:37 AM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: kurtie]
Hookxs Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/02/13
Posts: 247
Loc: Czech Republic
Originally Posted By: kurtie

Yes it is. Download the last Pianoteq demo and you will get a demo of all of its pianos including the Bluthner. I have Pianoteq 4 but not the Bluthner frown ... IMHO is the best sounding piano they have released to date... they are improving with each release.

Regards,
Kurt.-


I see, thank you. I probably have some older demo. I'll have to try it.

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#2009020 - 01/04/13 03:40 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
Temperament Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/19/10
Posts: 424
Loc: Hun,EU
Hi, All!

For some 2-3 months I became a true bigamist with Pianoteq and VintageD. Pianoteq for playability, VintageD for the big sound. (The Galaxy Vienna Grand - their Bösendorfer - is an excellent instrument also.

I thought to have discovered the main shortcoming of sampled instruments: the carved in sound space perspective in the miced samples themself, which narrows the hearing experience to a very intrusive direction like traveling through an acoustic pipeline. How to heal the Achilles' heel of sampled Pianos Recently (before I have got my long awaited clavichord just before Christmas, since then I barely had the time to play digital) I could get a big breakthrough for myself, based on the above assumption about destructive perpectives:

I tried VintageD as a VST within Reaper (a good DAW) and let the sound go through the Spatialiser coming with Reaper (ReaSurround). The default stereo arrangement did it, I have a wonderful experience with it through my Genelec monitors - a big improvement to the shortcoming.

Perhaps another remedy contributing to eliminate the tiring effect was that I sold my 5 Ys. old CA51 and replaced it temporarily by a very old Kurzweil slab (PC88 with Fatar TP10), and the monitors are now sitting on it some 20 cm lower, so the sound is not beaming directly into my ears - also a change to the sound perspective.

VintageD is now a big revelation! I am recommending this very simple experiment and am very courious, what you would say to it.

Attila
_________________________
Acoustic: own clavichord!, Burger&Jacoby,Biel (nice vintage vertical)
Digital: CA65; Pianoteq; Sampled:Galaxy VintageD+Vienna(Bösendorfer)
Sampletekk Black,PMI, etc...
Harpsi: Beurmann Dutch+Sampletekk, Clavichord:PMI+Wavelore+organs

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#2009066 - 01/04/13 05:37 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: Temperament]
Aeons Holle Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 55
Loc: Hamburg, Germany
Originally Posted By: Temperament

I tried VintageD as a VST within Reaper (a good DAW) and let the sound go through the Spatialiser coming with Reaper (ReaSurround). The default stereo arrangement did it, I have a wonderful experience with it through my Genelec monitors - a big improvement to the shortcoming.


Woah! Then I need to try this... like, right now!
_________________________
Kawai CA95
VI Labs True Keys: Pianos
Synthogy Ivory II American Concert D, Italian Grand, Grand Pianos
Galaxy Vintage D, The Giant

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#2009107 - 01/04/13 07:08 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
Aeons Holle Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 55
Loc: Hamburg, Germany
Ok, just tried ReaSurround, but with Ivory American D. And I used my AKG K501 headphones, as I never play via monitors.

So here is my observation:
When I loaded the default stereo arrangement for ReaSurround(as described above), the main effect was a decrease in stereo width.
Which seems plausible to me, as the default arrangement in ReaSurround placed the left and right inputs basically at 50% of the stereo field.
I then disabled the ReaSurround plugin and decreased the Stereo Width parameter in Ivory itself, which yielded practically the same effect. After reenabling ReaSurround, playing around with the virtual input placement in ReaSurround did not produce any other significant changes to my ears.

Temperament, is it possible that due to your usage of monitors and their placement, you experienced an overly extreme stereo effect, which was then corrected by your usage of ReaSurround?
Could you describe in more detail how the sound changes for you when enabling ReaSurround?
Maybe you could also try turning of ReaSurround and then decrease the Stereo Width in Vintage D to compare the change to the sound?

I'm interested in your comments on this because I think you certainly might be onto something with your theory discussed in the "achilles heel" thread. However, right now I don't understand how ReaSurround could help changing the perspective of, let's say, a close miced sampled piano to a sound more resembling the player's position.
_________________________
Kawai CA95
VI Labs True Keys: Pianos
Synthogy Ivory II American Concert D, Italian Grand, Grand Pianos
Galaxy Vintage D, The Giant

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#2009132 - 01/04/13 08:18 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
adak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/27/12
Posts: 282
Loc: Canada
here is a good review of pianoteq from hugh sung

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2qHip2Gc29k

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jTbXnbfymdc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ulS-N6PSRuc

he will probably be a greater piano player than i will ever be, and if pianoteq is good for him then it is good for me.


Edited by adak (01/05/13 12:12 PM)
_________________________
Casio Privia PX-150


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#2009149 - 01/04/13 09:38 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
w i l l Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/22/12
Posts: 10
When you guys refer to the playability of these software pianos what is the main contributing factor? Is it the number of velocity layers? This is the obvious advantage modeled pianos have over sampled as far as I can see.

And with the narrow sound which Temperament is talking about, having an acoustically sound setup to monitor is important as Aeons Holle pointed out, what about having the ability to layer the recordings of multiple mic placements once you've got that? Of the three pianos I'm looking at only one gives you a range of mics to play with, and another (Galaxy) says they considered this but decided against it as it introduces more problems than it would be worth.

What is the consensus on these questions?

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#2009158 - 01/04/13 09:53 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Playability is a bit of a squirrely concept. Mostly it has three elements:

1. Does the piano respond correctly to all sequences of pedal and key correctly? Partial pedal is one issue. Another example is repedaling. For the most part the best VST's do at least most of these correctly. Some new VST's, even pretty good ones, don't see the need to handle some of these cases, though.

2. Is the relationship between incoming velocity and sound natural? Some people complain that sampled VST's don't have extreme enough fff or ppp (or that you can't get there with a normal keyboard, which seldom gets to velocity 127). In any case, sampled pianos are made from recordings that were pulled from a sampling session and may not correspond to any particular velocity, so it's possible for them to set up a velocity curve in which the timbre doesn't change where and as much as expected. Further, some sampled pianos do not blend the layers across velocity levels, so you get the same timbre at velocity 67 and 68, for example.

3. Modeled pianos have benefited from marketing that has persuaded people that there's a playability difference. We go in expecting to find it, so we do, even if we can't define what playability differences there are or what the shortcomings of the sampled VST's are.


Edited by gvfarns (01/04/13 09:54 PM)

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#2009184 - 01/04/13 10:56 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
adak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/27/12
Posts: 282
Loc: Canada
what does VST stand for?
_________________________
Casio Privia PX-150


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#2009191 - 01/04/13 11:19 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
There are a number of terms people use to refer to software pianos, some of which are probably not technically correct. VST is one of the more common terms you hear here, although I think not all software pianos are VST's. You can wikipedia VST for details. When I use it, I am generically referring to software pianos.


Edited by gvfarns (01/04/13 11:20 PM)

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#2009477 - 01/05/13 02:12 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: Aeons Holle]
Temperament Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/19/10
Posts: 424
Loc: Hun,EU
Aeons Holle, I am badly occupied for a week or so and cannot do much experiments nor document this in detail. Some qualitative remarks: I think the beneficial effect I definitely have and enjoy can be attributed to the mere fact to have a more processed sound out of the spatialiser. This type of processing is probably adding some phase changes/enrichments to the by compressed phase image out of the mics. (Beside of using a moderate convolution reverb provided by the instrument like "Jazz Club").

Just my assumption. This very positive effect is definitely there, my son has noticed is also immediately. It is not a sudden pleasent "wow" at the first moment, by far not, but the sound gets wider, you get a background feeling for the sound source and the previously tiring intrusive presence of punctual sound source is tamed, getting a context. Is a matter of playability also.

I don't have Ivory, there is the original "narrow perspective" not a bottleneck or to a lesser degree and therefore it brings not that much improvement.

Another interesting observation I could make with Kontakt sampled instruments: to change interpolation algorithm of Kontakt (HQI) to perfect (instead of standard, high) an to chose 192 KBit Bitrate for my EMU0404 USB I could get some minor audible improvement, but this one was not thus emphasised as this effect of the spatialiser. (I am constantly retuning my instruments, so the effect of HWI with normal stretch tuning could be even lesser.)

Some other experience with Galaxy and Reaper (or perhaps other DAW with spatialiser)?

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#2009583 - 01/05/13 05:41 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: gvfarns]
Macy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 609
Originally Posted By: gvfarns
Playability is a bit of a squirrely concept. Mostly it has three elements:

1. Does the piano respond correctly to all sequences of pedal and key correctly? Partial pedal is one issue. Another example is repedaling. For the most part the best VST's do at least most of these correctly. Some new VST's, even pretty good ones, don't see the need to handle some of these cases, though.


I agree that these are vitally important issues.

Originally Posted By: gvfarns
2. Is the relationship between incoming velocity and sound natural? Some people complain that sampled VST's don't have extreme enough fff or ppp (or that you can't get there with a normal keyboard, which seldom gets to velocity 127). In any case, sampled pianos are made from recordings that were pulled from a sampling session and may not correspond to any particular velocity, so it's possible for them to set up a velocity curve in which the timbre doesn't change where and as much as expected. Further, some sampled pianos do not blend the layers across velocity levels, so you get the same timbre at velocity 67 and 68, for example.


Setting up the velocity curve correctly for use with a given keyboard is all-important. It radically changes the timbre range and response when playing. I suspect many people's objections to the "best" sampled pianos are because the velocity curves are not optimized properly for their keyboard.

I also suspect latency settings have a major affect on how people perceive the playability of sampled pianos vs modeled pianos, which is a much bigger problem with sampled pianos (because of drive access time to the samples). There is a range of latency (buffers around 256 samples) that affect the feel and response of playing before the latency because obvious. I believe you need buffers of 128 samples or less to avoid those effects. I can certainly tell the difference between playing with 256 vs 128 even though the difference doesn't appear audible at first impression.
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#2009591 - 01/05/13 06:04 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: Macy]
sullivang Online   blank
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2202
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Originally Posted By: Macy

I also suspect latency settings have a major affect on how people perceive the playability of sampled pianos vs modeled pianos, which is a much bigger problem with sampled pianos (because of drive access time to the samples).


I disagree with this. The latency of disk-streaming software pianos has almost nothing to do with the latency of the disk. The reason is that the very first part of all the samples is stored in RAM, and so when you play a key, the first part of the sample is already there, ready to play. The rest of the sample, on disk, is simultaneously read in the background, so that when the first bit has finished being played, the next bit is ready, providing seamless playback.

Now, I know there can be secondary affects. I am well aware that you observed an improvement in polyphony when you increased the sample buffer size, and of course when you increase the sample buffer, latency increases. Generally, though, I assert that the latency of software pianos is by and large seperate to the latency of the storage system.

Greg.


Edited by sullivang (01/05/13 06:07 PM)

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#2009601 - 01/05/13 06:13 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: Macy]
Kawai James Online   content
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 9009
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted By: Macy
Setting up the velocity curve correctly for use with a given keyboard is all-important. It radically changes the timbre range and response when playing. I suspect many people's objections to the "best" sampled pianos are because the velocity curves are not optimized properly for their keyboard.


Very good point.

James
x
_________________________
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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#2009627 - 01/05/13 06:46 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3797
Loc: North Carolina
gv: I'm not having trouble getting fff from my VSTs. ppp is bit more difficult, but I attribute that to my ham-fisted ways, not to the piano or the software.

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#2009651 - 01/05/13 07:23 PM Re: alternatives to pianoteq? (since some of you say it doesn't [Re: adak]
joflah Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 08/09/09
Posts: 295
Loc: St. Louis, MO, USA
Originally Posted By: adak
what does VST stand for?


Virtual Studio Technology.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtual_Studio_Technology
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