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#2029256 - 02/08/13 11:27 AM Software piano's
StefaanBelgium Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/14/12
Posts: 53
Loc: Belgium
In the 'Digital Pianos' part of the forum, I sometimes run into posts that talk about software piano's. I'm intrigued by that.
How is the general consensus? Excellent thing or just another gadget ?
I looked at the website from one developer, and it was a hefty price ( around $ 250 ) ...
Also, are there excellent software piano's for Ipad's ?
So what's your opinion and experience with them?
I have a Kawai CA65 and I like the standard 'Concert Grand' a lot, but that's about it. The other piano samples are not to my taste... Especially not when listening through headphones.
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#2029265 - 02/08/13 11:42 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
kurtie Offline
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Registered: 07/06/10
Posts: 207
Some of us use exclusively software pianos and don't the sounds stuffed into the digital piano. I think that it is safe to say that software pianos are ahead of what digital pianos offer, and some people even think that the industry should improve the quality of the samples found on digital pianos. They are improving... but very slowly.

Take a software piano like Vintage D... it sounds gorgeous. If I recall correctly it has a size of something like 4 o 5 GB. Is out there any digital piano with something comparable in it? That is for sampled pianos. For modelled pianos, let's take Pianoteq. Here the situation is more tricky because the Roland V-Piano is something comparable to Pianoteq (I don't dare to say which one is better)... but the V-Piano is outrageously expensive (compared to the cost of Pianoteq).

Because of that I think that Kawai will have success with its new VPC1, because has realized that some users don't really are going to use the sounds inside the digital piano and they don't want to pay for them. Of course, software pianos are too risky for a gig situation (you don't want to experience a freeze on the computer on stage), but in a studio or at home... for me software pianos win hands down over the sounds inside digital pianos.


Regards,
Kurt.-

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#2029311 - 02/08/13 01:28 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: kurtie]
anotherscott Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 3159
Originally Posted By: kurtie
Take a software piano like Vintage D... it sounds gorgeous. If I recall correctly it has a size of something like 4 o 5 GB. Is out there any digital piano with something comparable in it?

Korg Kronos (and a somewhat scaled down version in Korg Krome). Though not everyone agrees that they are the best sounding self-contained pianos. For example, some people prefer some of the Nord piano sounds, even though they are much smaller. So size isn't everything. But overall, I'd say your post is generally correct.

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#2029331 - 02/08/13 01:58 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
For the most part software pianos stand head-and-shoulders above their hardware equivalents, especially in terms of sound detail and realism (on the sampled side).

They have a few downsides:

  • They are another thing to set up and configure
  • Their velocity curve isn't always just right for your piano and finding a better curve by trial-and-error can be a hassle for some people (the Kawai VPC1 apparently addresses this for the most common software pianos)
  • They are only as reliable as the computer they are in (with the audio interface, if present), which is way less reliable than a hardware piano
  • Even at their best they have more latency than the hardware piano, though for most configurations and players their latency is fine


I only use software pianos. Can't bear listening to the imperfections on hardware pianos any more.


Edited by gvfarns (02/08/13 01:59 PM)

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#2029333 - 02/08/13 02:04 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3788
Loc: North Carolina
I hear you, gv. I sometimes re-engage the piano's internal sounds ... and I cringe. What was I thinking when I bought this thing? It's piano software or nothing.

I think the velocity curve is easy to set up on some software pianos ... but, unfortunately, not on my favorite ones (the Galaxy Vintage D and Vienna Grand). If only they would use Pianoteq's poke-the-dots method!

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#2029336 - 02/08/13 02:08 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Yeah, you've pointed out something I find generally to be true: PianoTeq's interface is always the best and most convenient. I'm not a particular PianoTeq fan but I do think they are more considerate in designing their UI and built-in functionality than other software piano designers tend to be.

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#2029337 - 02/08/13 02:09 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: gvfarns]
Michael H Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/23/05
Posts: 98
Loc: Long Island, NY
Originally Posted By: gvfarns
Can't bear listening to the imperfections on hardware pianos any more.


+1 on that. The lack of detail and especially resonance ruins solo playing for me on digital pianos. In a band context I'm not so picky.
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2012 Solo Piano CD of original pieces, entitled 'Journeys'. You can listen to samples at:
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#2029687 - 02/09/13 06:50 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
StefaanBelgium Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/14/12
Posts: 53
Loc: Belgium
What's the view on the IGrand software? High quality samples or not ?


http://www.ikmultimedia.com/products/igrandipad/
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#2029701 - 02/09/13 07:33 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1779
Loc: Pennsylvania
Well, if you go by the demos on their website, they sound terrific. They actually have me thinking of purchasing an Ipad just so I can try the IGrand product.

The only thing restraining me is my previous experience with demos. What I hear on demos is not always (EVER) what I get on my system.

I will just have to wait for further confirmation on this one.
_________________________
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My current system: Kawai ES7 + Focal CMS40 Powered Monitors, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, Mackie ProFX8 Mixer, Ravenscroft275, True Keys American Grand, Ivory II American Concert D, Steinway Basic, Galaxy Vintage D, True Pianos, Pianoteq, Alicia's Keys

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#2029707 - 02/09/13 07:53 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
Nikolas Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5223
Loc: Europe
About the IGrand. It doesn't really sound THAT amazing. I mean given that it's for an iPad, it's an app, and it costs 9$ it can't be THAT amazing. Some demos sound good, others sound quite poor, to be honest... So...

Now, on the topic at hand. One thing that's not mentioned about software pianos is that they can be used in studios: The digital piano will produce audio files eventually (even if you rig it to midi and fix it, etc... Eventually you'll have to bounce it in your computer as audio). The software pianos will remain midi until the last minute, which means further tweaking and toying with the pedal and any wrong note you may have done... It's all in the game!

And, yes, software pianos are simply much better than their hardware equivelant, in terms of sound.

The rest has already been mentioned.
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#2029738 - 02/09/13 08:36 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
chickenlump Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/13/12
Posts: 54
Loc: Canada
iGrand doesn't mention if it emulates other piano noises, particularly sympathetic resonance...

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#2029798 - 02/09/13 10:13 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: gvfarns]
kiedysktos. Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 425
Loc: Europe, Poland
Originally Posted By: gvfarns
For the most part software pianos stand head-and-shoulders above their hardware equivalents, especially in terms of sound detail and realism (on the sampled side).

They have a few downsides:

  • They are another thing to set up and configure
  • Their velocity curve isn't always just right for your piano and finding a better curve by trial-and-error can be a hassle for some people (the Kawai VPC1 apparently addresses this for the most common software pianos)
  • They are only as reliable as the computer they are in (with the audio interface, if present), which is way less reliable than a hardware piano
  • Even at their best they have more latency than the hardware piano, though for most configurations and players their latency is fine


I only use software pianos. Can't bear listening to the imperfections on hardware pianos any more.


Other disadvantage is that DP's cooperate with damper pedal better in a technical way. For example, half pedalling.

Or other thing - in my Roland FP-4, you can catch the sound of a note even 0,5 second after you released it, using damper pedal. That's quite realistic compared to real grand. I recorded in studio using some beautifully sounding VST (sound man choose it) and it didn't tolerate using damper pedal even 0,0001 second after releasing a note, which resulted in some aborted chords. Very artificial phenomenon and unpleasant feeling. Even if it did have that feature, it should support half pedalling to take full advantage of it. This is quite surprising for someone like me who plays DPs, and will be even much more surprising for someone used to playing acoustic pianos daily.

But sound quality, sound selection and timbre are great at software pianos. Add other sounds, and potential effects you may find. I consider buying laptop instead of new DP, even for gigging. Just compare price/sound quality ratio...
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#2029806 - 02/09/13 10:36 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Luckily for everyone, for the most part your comments are out of date. All the good, current software pianos implement half pedalling and repedalling well.

Software pianos that don't do that stuff (or don't do it right) are either outdated or are cheap, "entry level" software pianos. They sound just as good as the current generation, but don't play well.


Edited by gvfarns (02/09/13 10:38 AM)

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#2030022 - 02/09/13 07:03 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: gvfarns]
kiedysktos. Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 425
Loc: Europe, Poland
Originally Posted By: gvfarns
Luckily for everyone, for the most part your comments are out of date. All the good, current software pianos implement half pedalling and repedalling well.

Software pianos that don't do that stuff (or don't do it right) are either outdated or are cheap, "entry level" software pianos. They sound just as good as the current generation, but don't play well.


That's great to hear smile I examined it and your'e right, some better software do it in right way, like Galaxy Vintage D, Alicia's Keys or - of course - Pianoteq. But these don't respond to half pedalling:
- LIMEX Vienna Grand Piano Expansion
- Garritan Steinway Professional
- EastWest Quantum Leap
- Ivory Bosendorfer Imperial 10
- Vienna Symphonic Library

... and I suppose a few others.
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#2030114 - 02/09/13 09:52 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
I was pretty sure Garritan did, actually--it doesn't seem to be for sale any more, though. But yeah, the lack of partial pedal is one major things that makes those others unpopular in this forum (I'm thinking mainly of VSL and EWQL here). There are other forums where people like them better.

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#2030176 - 02/09/13 11:55 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: gvfarns]
dbudde Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/10/13
Posts: 30
Originally Posted By: gvfarns
...the lack of partial pedal is one major things that makes those others unpopular in this forum (I'm thinking mainly of VSL and EWQL here). There are other forums where people like them better.


I'm fairly new here, but have read through many of the threads. Can someone explain to me why half pedal feature seems to be the whipping boy for the high end soft pianos? This one feature seems to have an inordinately heavy weight when comparing libraries. Some of you just dismiss a given library if this one particular feature is missing, in spite of that library having many other features that other libraries don't.

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#2030199 - 02/10/13 01:10 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: dbudde]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1779
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: dbudde
I'm fairly new here, but have read through many of the threads. Can someone explain to me why half pedal feature seems to be the whipping boy for the high end soft pianos? This one feature seems to have an inordinately heavy weight when comparing libraries. Some of you just dismiss a given library if this one particular feature is missing, in spite of that library having many other features that other libraries don't.


Well, as near as I can tell, for those that feel that way ...

It is similar to how you might feel if piano was just perfect in everyway except that a particular key on the keyboard didn't work properly.

If you never use that particular key you might wonder why that matters so much. But, if you do use that key, you can't live with that issue.
_________________________
Don

My current system: Kawai ES7 + Focal CMS40 Powered Monitors, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, Mackie ProFX8 Mixer, Ravenscroft275, True Keys American Grand, Ivory II American Concert D, Steinway Basic, Galaxy Vintage D, True Pianos, Pianoteq, Alicia's Keys

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#2030259 - 02/10/13 04:29 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: kiedysktos.]
Macy Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: kiedysktos.
I examined it and your'e right, some better software do it in right way, like Galaxy Vintage D, Alicia's Keys or - of course - Pianoteq. But these don't respond to half pedalling:
- LIMEX Vienna Grand Piano Expansion
- Garritan Steinway Professional
- EastWest Quantum Leap
- Ivory Bosendorfer Imperial 10
- Vienna Symphonic Library

... and I suppose a few others.

The Ivory II Bösendorfer 290 Imperial Grand certainly does have half-pedaling, as do all Ivory II pianos. I guess you are thinking of the old, and discontinued Ivory I pianos.
_________________________
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

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#2030277 - 02/10/13 05:50 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: Macy]
Macy Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
I would add that the Ivory II and Vintage D also have re-pedaling, which is MUCH more important than half-pedaling to me.
_________________________
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

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#2030486 - 02/10/13 01:08 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: dbudde]
anotherscott Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 3159
Originally Posted By: dbudde
I'm fairly new here, but have read through many of the threads. Can someone explain to me why half pedal feature seems to be the whipping boy for the high end soft pianos? This one feature seems to have an inordinately heavy weight when comparing libraries.

You can get some more perspective (from both sides) in the recent thread, "Entry level digital piano with continuous sustain"

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#2030503 - 02/10/13 01:26 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: dbudde]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: dbudde
Originally Posted By: gvfarns
...the lack of partial pedal is one major things that makes those others unpopular in this forum (I'm thinking mainly of VSL and EWQL here). There are other forums where people like them better.


I'm fairly new here, but have read through many of the threads. Can someone explain to me why half pedal feature seems to be the whipping boy for the high end soft pianos? This one feature seems to have an inordinately heavy weight when comparing libraries. Some of you just dismiss a given library if this one particular feature is missing, in spite of that library having many other features that other libraries don't.


A software pianos isn't all that complicated a beast. Basically a bunch of recordings that are triggered by various MIDI signals. Add a nice convolution reverb and you are pretty much done. That is basically what the first generation software pianos were.

But the first generation of software pianos earned a poor reputation because they weren't very "playable." In order to make the instrument respond in a somewhat realistic way you add 1) sympathetic resonance 2) partial pedal 3) repedalling. Once you get there things behave fairly realistically. To omit one or more of these is a grievous error in a current-generation piano. Their omission makes a big difference in how naturally the piano performs in my experience. There aren't really that many features like this, so they shouldn't be neglected.

I've oversimplified things here, but you get the idea. There's no point in adding other features if you miss the basic ones. That would be like adding leather, warmed seats to a car that doesn't have the ability to steer (or something else really fundamental). We don't see a lot of difference between pianos with 10 sample layers and 128. We don't see millions of different types of release samples making a difference. We don't even see layer blending making that much of a difference. I'm not sure what other features you may be thinking of.

At the end of the day the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Basic features I've class as "playability" items are important for a piano to respond naturally. More important than what's offered by other expensive but nonetheless first-generation pianos. The latter sometimes sound very good when processed or recorded, but often don't respond the way you expect them to while playing live. If you only care about sound, you can get a SW piano from 10 years ago and it will sound great. Sound quality and detail are not really areas of growth for software pianos.

With programs like Kontakt almost any yahoo with a mic can make a "software piano" but it won't behave like the ones discriminating digital piano players pay for. That's why lack of implementation of playability features is sufficient to disqualify a new software piano.


Edited by gvfarns (02/10/13 02:19 PM)

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#2030509 - 02/10/13 01:30 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: anotherscott]
dbudde Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/10/13
Posts: 30
Originally Posted By: anotherscott

You can get some more perspective (from both sides) in the recent thread, "Entry level digital piano with continuous sustain"


Yeah. I've read that thread before. I understand the issues involved. What I'm having a hard time understanding is the totally dismissive perspective that if this one feature is not supported then the library is no good.

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#2030579 - 02/10/13 03:03 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: dbudde]
o0Ampy0o Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/18/12
Posts: 473
Originally Posted By: dbudde
What I'm having a hard time understanding is the totally dismissive perspective that if this one feature is not supported then the library is no good.

Certainly there are people who use and rightfully desire a feature.

That said, a percentage of a point of view is based on hear-say. Some people repeat what appears to be common opinion. The same is true of a reaction.

People follow the crowd especially when going against it suggests you know less or are less skilled.

There is an element of implied knowledge and skill-level if you demand a certain feature in a product.........even when you do not use it........often or at all.

This parroting is common on internet forums where there is relatively little accountability.

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#2030585 - 02/10/13 03:14 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
Nikolas Offline
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Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5223
Loc: Europe
Almost all sample based pianos are aimed to computer production musicians. Media composers, computer game composers, and the such. Those who are interested in getting the final result (the recording) out from their own studio...

In that sense half pedalling is hardly a problem for a lot. The sound, however, is. So having tons of velocity layers, and RR triggers and the such are much more important than having half pedalling options, which either way will get burried underneath enough reverb and orchestration.

Personally I find that the Garritan Steinway has a lovely sound (for classical stuff), but as far as playability is concerned (which is more the focus in PianoWorld) it's pianoteq hands down for me...
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#2030629 - 02/10/13 04:21 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
kiedysktos. Online   content
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Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 425
Loc: Europe, Poland
Thanks guys for corrections, I just quickly looked at DPBSD at could overlook something.

I don't use half pedalling in it's common understanding for 99,9% of my playing, BUT sometimes you may push damper pedal slightly too less - and in acoustic grand piano you have many levels of damper pedal. If a certain piano doesn't support half pedalling, the sound will be aborted. It will ignore any pushing pedal less deeper than let's say 50%. When you play fast piece with a lot of pedal changing and chords, half pedalling will forgive you some laziness or inaccuracy. But of course accepting pedal a few milliseconds after striking a chord is also very important in this case.

I think there are many cases when people use partial pedalling on acoustic piano, and don't even know it, because it is done automatically, connected with feeling of a moment.
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#2030656 - 02/10/13 04:58 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
Bane Offline
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Registered: 11/03/12
Posts: 91
Loc: USA
EWQL doesn't have half pedal cause it's an older piano. Neither did Ivory I, NI Acoustiks, Grand 3, or the other pianos popular a few years ago.
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#2030710 - 02/10/13 06:19 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
Fscotte Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/23/13
Posts: 35
I've only played piano for 8 months but I bought a Yamaha CLP340 new, so I started off with a good piano.

I can't believe that I am now actually considering the Vienna Imperial VST for $600+. It's either that one or the Ivory II American Concert D. Both of them are gorgeous even hearing them on the Try-Sound website.

They are the only one's I've been impressed with.

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#2030724 - 02/10/13 06:42 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
o0Ampy0o Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/18/12
Posts: 473
I also think the Vienna Imperial is one of the best sounding. The Ivory pianos occupy a different area of the universe. I have not been impressed with their tone. Have you ever seen this video? There are several that sound good enough to look into.


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#2030844 - 02/10/13 11:32 PM Re: Software piano's [Re: Fscotte]
Macy Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 605
Originally Posted By: Fscotte
I've only played piano for 8 months but I bought a Yamaha CLP340 new, so I started off with a good piano.

I can't believe that I am now actually considering the Vienna Imperial VST for $600+. It's either that one or the Ivory II American Concert D. Both of them are gorgeous even hearing them on the Try-Sound website.

They are the only one's I've been impressed with.


Don't make the mistake of picking a software piano for LIVE playing by listening to demos. I learned that the hard way after buying expensive software pianos. Most importantly, the demos tell you nothing about how the pianos will play. Try to find an acoustic piano that doesn't partial pedal (called half-pedal in this thread) or more importantly re-pedal. Of course they don't exist. So playing a software piano without those features will never feel like playing an acoustic piano. It will simply feel (and sound) unnatural to you while playing. That's why 2nd generation software pianos replaced 1st generation software pianos, not because of sound improvements in the samples themselves.

Demo's don't really tell you how the piano will sound (rather than feel) while playing either. Are you listening to the demo with the same speakers you will use to play the piano? Very likely you will listen to the demo over poor speakers attached to your PC. Or maybe over very good speakers in a high-end hi-fi system? Neither will sound much like the speakers typically used for playing live instruments.

Plus, (in my opinion), we listen very differently to a demo recording than we do while playing. The demo is simply recorded music (a final result) that we listen to and like or dislike as an audience member in a hall, or as we would sitting in our hi-fi room. Aside from our physical perspective (which matters - the piano doesn't sound the same sitting at the keyboard vs sitting in a room or an audience), we aren't involved in playing the music. While playing we hear the nuances in our playing as the piano responds to small changes in our touch. We receive feedback from the sound while playing and adjust our playing accordingly in real time. Playing the software piano allows you to hear how the piano timbre and dynamic range changes as you actually vary your attack and velocity on the keys, play repetitions, vary your pedaling, and so forth. You get none of that information listening to a demo. Plus inconsistencies between notes and non-monotonicity in volume or timbre will stick out while playing a software piano.

And the sound of demos doesn't tell you much because they can be doctored in so many ways. A sample set with major note-to-note inconsistencies in volume or timbre can easily be fixed after the fact in demos. Try that while playing in real time. For example, check out this note from Joe Felice, who did demos for EWQL :

Quote:
From: http://www.forum-pianoteq.com/viewtopic.php?id=1429

My live performances with sampled libraries often had notes that "stuck out" in various unintended places. For example, if a note sounded fine between velocities 88 and 94, if I happened to play with 95 velocity, the note stuck out like a sore thumb. As a countermeasure, I kept finding myself having to record my live performance into midi, using midi as a pseudo tape recorder -- zero quantization and zero click tracks, and then subsequently edit individual velocities to correct for note velocities that fired the wrong velocity-based sample set for a given note.

The above trouble occurred when I made a live recording of "Rhapsody in Blue" using the Boesendorfer piano in the demo recording that appears in EWQL Pianos' website. I had to go back and edit, by hand, numerous velocities that had "tripped" the next highest velocity layer ... in a piano library that sported 18 separate velocity levels. This is not to badmouth EWQL, because they do have a very fine library. It's just that sampled libraries often require that a live performance get note velocities edited here and there, in order to produce a polished-sounding performance. ...

All of my six demos that currently reside in the EWQLP website were, in fact, performed "live" by Yours Truly. I hasten to add that these live performances were recorded live into Digital Performer with zero quantization and with zero metronome usage, but velocities of a few of the noisier sounding samples were altered (by me -- almost always reduced in velocity rather than increased in velocity) to bring them inline;


I would say the 2nd worse way to pick a software piano is to listen to the same MIDI recording played by different software pianos. That simply does not work. A MIDI recording that was recorded with one software piano will not be optimum for another software piano. The first problem is that velocity curves for different software pianos are not the same. So what was optimum for the original piano may be not be optimum, or it may even be very poor, for another piano. Secondly, when we play we adjust our playing to the piano being played. I wouldn't play the same piece of music the same on the Vintage D as I would on the Ivory II American D for instance. So playing the same MIDI file on both can't be optimum for both. Finally, there is so much customization available on software pianos that an Ivory II (or Vintage D, or whatever) audio recording from a MIDI file is simply one of thousands (or millions) of very different audio recordings that could have been made from Ivory II (or Vintage D, or whatever) using the same MIDI file. So picking one tells you nothing about whether you would have preferred one of the thousands (or millions) of others you could have created using the same software piano.

So how do you pick the best software piano for LIVE playing? Listen to the people on this forum (or other forums that have people playing LIVE) that have used a lot of them. Listen to what they like and don't like about their playability, their sound, etc. Ignore people that aren't playing LIVE. They are interested in entirely different issues. You will find there is a general consensus about several pianos being "the best" for LIVE playing.
_________________________
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

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#2030891 - 02/11/13 01:18 AM Re: Software piano's [Re: StefaanBelgium]
o0Ampy0o Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/18/12
Posts: 473
Listening to a recording made with a software piano plug-in can be a viable starting point along with recommendations or reading expressed comments and reviews. If you don't like how something sounds in a recording what is the point when you are essentially playing recorded notes of a piano when using software piano plug-ins? I havn't notice anyone suggesting people ought to base their decision on any one source of information. Unfortunately it will take some luck with your research to find something you like the first time you make a purchase. You will probably end up making an investment to chalk up as a learning experience before you are satisfied with something.

I don't understand the argument that the piano's sound while you are playing is more important than the sound of the recorded plug-in when it is what you will be working with if using software piano plug-ins. The idea seems to be that you must have the sound of playing at an acoustic piano. If you get a sound to match sitting at an acoustic piano chances are it will be alien to an audience and no one but the player will appreciate it. It might work if all you are looking for is a good playing experience and you are not interested in what anyone else hears. If there is any conversion to audience acceptable tones something is bound to be lost in the translation like working with a single MIDI file and multiple software piano plug-ins. If you are going to use software piano plug-ins you have to accept it is a different experience on multiple levels and adjust to it. It is impossible to recreate the experience of playing at an acoustic piano using an electronic device. It will never sound or feel the same with current technology...........who knows what could happen in the future?

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