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#2058152 - 04/02/13 05:11 AM Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
Hello

Has anyone had any success doing this? I have tried however I simply can't get the volume. This is outputing from a laptop headphone jack. I can get plenty of volume hooking the laptop to a cheap low power 2.1 system.

I have also hooked up a PC with a decent audio interface to the Avantgrand line ins and I can get a reasonable volume if I use pro level signals (+4dBU) but still not great and that's at full volume.

It may be an issue with the Avantgrand line inputs - on paper at least it seems like there is a reasonable amount of amplifier power in there!

Is there something else I can do to up the power? If not I am either stuck with getting an external interface for the laptop and hoping it gives me enough volume, or getting a decent 2.1 setup. I know that both together would probably be the best of both worlds but I'm trying to keep everything uncluttered, hence the reason for using the internal speakers in the first place.

Any suggestions very welcome! - including 2.1 options if you think that's the way to go (budget is probably £100 - £200).

Cheers
Nick

PS - despite listening very closely to the decay, I am unable to perceive the noise gate issue mentioned elsewhere.

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#2058155 - 04/02/13 05:22 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3899
Loc: North Carolina
A laptop's headphone output is not the best choice for driving an amplifier.

You might try adding a mixer between the laptop and the AG, one with level controls. You might be able to get some extra gain from it. Or you might try an external sound card for the laptop.

Both of those solutions produce the clutter you shun. But I don't see any alternatives.

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#2058164 - 04/02/13 06:15 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: MacMacMac]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
My worry is that an audio interface isn't going to do it. Using a good interface (e-mu 1616m) with proper line outs only just gave me enough volume. I could spend a load of money on another one and find it doesn't do the job. The main problem seems to be that the AG just doesn't seem to amplify the line ins.

Maybe its because the line ins need to drive a number of different amplifiers in the AG so the signal is getting split multiple ways...

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#2058188 - 04/02/13 08:15 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
SLiX Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/25/13
Posts: 2
I own an AG N2 and I've already hooked up some devices to AUX input without any issue, at least these ones:
* BlackBerry phone
* Asus tablet (Android)), very noisy :-(
* Advance WTX500 Bluetooth receiver (to send audio from the asus tablet, less noisy and very handy)

I can easily get very loud sound (the N2 is very impressive as an audio playing system).

I also own an E-MU 0202 that I use to record output from the piano. I could try to use it to play audio on the piano but I think your problem is elsewhere. As you say, maybe an issue with line inputs on N1 or especially yours.
_________________________
Yamaha AvantGrand N2
Before: Yamaha Clavinova CLP-860

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#2058241 - 04/02/13 10:28 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
Wess. Chr. K. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 37
Loc: Sofia, Bulgaria
I did the same test and it works. From Macbook Pro headphones jack. No problem at all. Sounds loud enough on 50% (volume) form AG N1 and 50-70% from Macbook pro.
Reset the Amer.D settings or load some factory preset (Carnegie hall).
_________________________
Best regards,
Wess

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#2058252 - 04/02/13 10:56 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Wess. Chr. K.]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
Thanks for this - I will give it a go.

Just to clarify, I do get sound out, just not at a very loud volume. What I am using as a benchmark is the AGs own volume.

When you say it is working, are you managing to get the same volume as the AG or are you having to turn it up more to get the same?

I have managed to get a reasonable volume with an iPhone...


Edited by Albatrossone (04/02/13 10:58 AM)

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#2058265 - 04/02/13 11:24 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
Wess. Chr. K. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 37
Loc: Sofia, Bulgaria
To have the same volume as N1 you have to adjust the out put from the macbook pro (any laptop or external device).
Check one more time the connections: from "out" of the device to AG "in". I know it sounds a bit silly, but this kind of mistakes are not rear and might happen to any one.


Edited by Wess. Chr. K. (04/02/13 11:26 AM)
_________________________
Best regards,
Wess

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#2058268 - 04/02/13 11:32 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Wess. Chr. K.]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
I've checked all the connections. The volume in the laptop is at full. To get the volume to match the onboard sound in the AG I need to add around 10-12dB in Ivory Cantible - but at this level it just distorts. I've also tried with a different laptop - same problem.

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#2058273 - 04/02/13 11:43 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
emenelton Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 554
You might try a different cable if you haven't yet.

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#2058283 - 04/02/13 12:01 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: MacMacMac]
Charles Cohen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1535
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Originally Posted By: MacMacMac
. . .
You might try adding a mixer between the laptop and the AG, one with level controls. You might be able to get some extra gain from it. . .
. . .


+1. Even including the cost of cables, it's well within your budget.

. Charles


Edited by Charles Cohen (04/02/13 12:02 PM)

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#2058308 - 04/02/13 01:14 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
emenelton Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 554
I personally think, after reading posts of people that have the same piano working, the OP has either defective cables or the aux in input is defective.

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#2058328 - 04/02/13 02:13 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: emenelton]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
I'm gonna try a few different cables - is there any particular type I should stay away from that you'd expect to attenuate the signal?

I stress though that it's not that the output is quiet just that its just not loud enough (compared to the volume of the internal sounds) so I'm trying to see whether that's normal operation.

All the help's appreciated guys!

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#2058333 - 04/02/13 02:26 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
36251 Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/12/10
Posts: 765
I have an AG but have never tried this. I have read somewhere that there is a noise gate that might be the issue.
_________________________
AG N2, CP4, GK MK & MP

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#2058336 - 04/02/13 02:33 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3899
Loc: North Carolina
The cable won't make any difference (unless it's outright broken).

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#2058337 - 04/02/13 02:33 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
emenelton Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 554
You wrote:

Originally Posted By: Albatrossone
I've checked all the connections. The volume in the laptop is at full. To get the volume to match the onboard sound in the AG I need to add around 10-12dB in Ivory Cantible - but at this level it just distorts. I've also tried with a different laptop - same problem.


To me, coupled with the successful posts, your experience seems like something is wrong.
What cable have you been using?

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#2058357 - 04/02/13 03:13 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: emenelton]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
I've used a few different cables. Just standard jack to jack line level cable and I've just tried it with another one.

I plugged an iPhone directly in and played a track. Listening through headphones plugged into the piano the volume was ok but not super loud with the iphone and AG volume on max.

I then plugged the same headphones directly into the Iphone and the volume was much higher - enough to hurt my ears.

I assumed this was a property of the piano but this now doesn't seem right to me - what do you think? Time to call yamaha?

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#2058366 - 04/02/13 03:57 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
emenelton Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 554
Originally Posted By: Albatrossone
Hello
I have also hooked up a PC with a decent audio interface to the Avantgrand line ins and I can get a reasonable volume if I use pro level signals (+4dBU) but still not great and that's at full volume.


I can't see a different +4 mixer acting different. Were you pinning the meters on this interface when you tried it?
Maybe a mixer would solve it but I would investigate further. You really shouldn't need it especially after running a +4 interface unsuccessfully.

All the line in threads have one flaky element or another that seem to get in the way. I would think that the Line in on an instrument like the N1 would have significant headroom and could be driven hot enough to be more than loud enough.

Perhaps a visit to the dealer to try your iphone player on a different N1.

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#2058420 - 04/02/13 06:58 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: emenelton]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
Yeah - I'll give the dealer a ring tomorrow. To be honest I can't see how an audio signal can possibly be quieter after its been through an external amplifier on max volume unless there is something wrong. I'll update when I know what's happening (bet they fix the level problem and the noise gate'll make an appearance!)

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#2058430 - 04/02/13 07:26 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
emenelton Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 554
It is possible that you were running your external computer interface at -10. Some of them have switches that toggle between -10 and +4.

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#2058590 - 04/03/13 08:31 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: emenelton]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
Well for the laptops and iphone there isn't that option and it was +4 which (just) gave an acceptable signal. Its not unreasonable to expect a decent volume out of any -10 device though.

However, I have now had the shop try out another two N1s and they are also reporting low volume.


For those who got it working (SLiX or Wess), can you be any more specific about how loud it actually got? i.e. louder, equal or lower than the onboard sound at the same volume setting? We may just have different views on acceptable volume. If you are getting it as loud as the onboard sound maybe its a firmware thing...

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#2058597 - 04/03/13 08:51 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
emenelton Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 554
At least you know now. The 1616m has, I believe, a software toggle on it's mixer GUI that switches between
-10 and +4. It would be worth looking into to confirm.

The outboard mixer suggestions are most likely your next step.

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#2058600 - 04/03/13 08:57 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: emenelton]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
Yeah - I flicked back and forth between the settings on the 1616m. Maybe some external 2.1 speakers instead - any you'd recommend for best reproducing a piano?

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#2058631 - 04/03/13 10:13 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
emenelton Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 554
As far as speakers go, there are posters here that can give you very good suggestions. I have good trouble shooting skills and like to help out where I can.

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#2059062 - 04/04/13 06:18 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
Wess. Chr. K. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 37
Loc: Sofia, Bulgaria
At volume on "3 o'clock" (AG N1) I feel the instrument very convenient – loud enough to be heard as a real sounding piano.
The same settings remain when I connect the AG to my Macbook pro or Mac Pro from headphone jacks.
Today I did more precise test and must correct my last post. Not at 50-70% volume output form the Mac(s) but ca. 85%.

Thus I compared at almost the same loudness, playing Beethoven's Sonate F-dur Op.10, nr.2 (known as the 6-th Sonate) and Chopin Prelude Op 24 nr.4 e-moll.
Both have contrasts as a dynamic.
The "pp and ppp" range of Ivory II (American Concert D) in is even larger than AG.
As for as "fff" – they are quite equal.
_________________________
Best regards,
Wess

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#2059147 - 04/04/13 09:26 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Wess. Chr. K.]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
Very interesting. As I said, the guy in the shop reckoned their two N1s were also outputing at 2/3rds of the volume of connecting the headphones direct - so either the Macs output is hotter or your N1 has a higher output for some reason.

I've spoken to Yamaha about it too and they are going to do some tests of their own.

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#2059195 - 04/04/13 10:24 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
Wess. Chr. K. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 37
Loc: Sofia, Bulgaria
I don't think that my N1 is different. Not at all.
Probably the Mac's output phone-jack has a bit more gain.
Both macs (Macbook pro 17" C2D 2.8GHz and Mac Pro 2.66GHz Nehalem) are models 2009.
_________________________
Best regards,
Wess

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#2059230 - 04/04/13 11:11 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Wess. Chr. K.]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
How about with headphones? - listening to the Mac with headphones attached to the Avantgrand then listening to the Mac directly with the headphones without changing the volume.

If it's quieter through the piano the Mac has a hotter output. If its quieter through the Mac, your piano has a greater output than mine.

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#2059235 - 04/04/13 11:18 AM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
emenelton Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 554
Albatrosse,

Perhaps you could adjust the touch controls on the piano to make it a bit softer when you want to play along. From what Wess.Chr.K. is reporting, flying in an external sound is a bit of a balancing act, but it can be accomplished successfully.
His statement about FFF being the same and dynamic levels below that being actually a little quieter fall in line with how an instrument with more dynamic range than the internal piano sound would behave.

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#2059275 - 04/04/13 12:31 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Albatrossone]
Wess. Chr. K. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 37
Loc: Sofia, Bulgaria
Sorry, colleagues,
I did not mention something very, really very important about Ivory II Am.C.D being played on AG – the velocity curve:
because AG has been limited to 124 (upper register) and at most 116 -lowest one (but normally 96-106) you need to limit the velocity curve inside Am.C.D to 116 but not to leave it on 127 or instead, you might use a host (for instance Cubase 7) to enable the midi modifiers to expansion set to 17:20 (or it was an opposite??? – I can not check right now, however that were the values.)
This issue repeats exactly the same way with East West QL Pianos.
After this make-up it sounds perfectly for me, but it is a weakest spot on AG.

My conclusion is that AG is good for playing, but as a master keyboard must be treated with care and those tricks I mentioned above are absolutely necessary to get the profit of VST Pianos.


Edited by Wess. Chr. K. (04/04/13 12:33 PM)
_________________________
Best regards,
Wess

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#2059342 - 04/04/13 02:14 PM Re: Ivory II through Avantgrand (N1) Speakers [Re: Wess. Chr. K.]
Albatrossone Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/13
Posts: 20
Cheers for this. On mine the fff is definitely quieter than on board so it's not a dynamics problem.

I also have ivory set up to send its highest velocities at around 100 and with the 'power' curve - so it's not that either.

Ps - also asked yamaha about the more limited midi range so ill report back if they say anything ( though I personally think its a limitation of using the acoustic action and/or of the sensors ability to register the speed).

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