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Piano Vsti

Discussion in 'Useful resources' started by fluterific00, Aug 24, 2009.

  1. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    Hello-
    I am new to the midi grand piano school of thought. But, after doing some research I am wondering if this could be the way to go for me, until I can afford a live grand and until I get my current piano fixed. What vsti's do most of you use and are there any good ones for free? This is very intriguing and need some advice. The main problem is that I don't have all 88 keys on my clavinova yamaha, will that effect anything?

    Any advice and links would be a great help. Since I don't really have a very private place to record as well, this may be something I would be interested in trying. I've been searching but don't really know how to use it or which one I should.

    Thanks
     
  2. mgasilva

    mgasilva New Member

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    VSTs

    Hello,

    I'm not sure if this is exactly what your question is about, but I regularly use Pianoteq 3.0 and Ivory VST - Italian Grand, Grand Pianos and Upright.

    The sound quality of the sampled vsts (Ivory) is still a tad better, IMHO, but you have to use a really fast computer with a really fast, high-capacity hard drive for all the samples. Another drawback is that Ivory uses a very annoying copy-protection system, for which you have to buy a dongle termed an I-lok and register with it to use your software. Another difficulty I've had with ivory is that the standalone software that comes with it does not allow for live recording, and you have to work around it, either having to record from your computer's outputs (digital or analog) or using a VST host/sequencer that allows for wave conversion, such as Cakewalk. Either way, it is very cumbersome to record clean, digital sound from Ivory, and I cannot understand why the Software developers have not included that option within the standalone program.

    The sampled pianos are:
    Italian Grand - Fazoli F308
    Grand Pianos - German D (Steinway D), Bosendorfer Imperial 290, and Yamaha Concert C7 Grand;
    Uprights - Yamaha U5 Modern Upright; 1914 A.M. Hume Vintage Upright; 1915 Packard Barroom Upright, and an unidentified "Tack" piano.


    Pianoteq, which is a modeled piano, on the other hand, while still having a slightly worse sound quality (especially the basses), is much more flexible, and requires much less computing power and hard-drive space to work. Modern laptops or desktops should work fine, as long as you use ASIO drivers for your sound card, which btw are required for ivory too. Pianoteq allows for direct MIDI recording and then conversion from midi to wave using high-quality settings, which translates into hassle-free recording.

    I am not sure what you mean by not having all 88 keys on your Clavinova, though. Is it broken, are some keys missing, or do you have a different model with less octaves?

    Marcelo.
     
  3. s_winitsky

    s_winitsky Member

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    I simply connect my digital keyboard headphone out directly into the line in (not the microphone in) of my computer sound card. If your computer sound card doesn’t have a line in or produces a very bad latency, you can purchase good external sound card for this purpose in almost any music store (they are very cheap if you find the right one.)

    This is probably the most inexpensive solution assuming you have a quality keyboard. I would not use those Casio models you pick up at radio shack with midi or line in. I originally had no intention of recording music as I thought I could not afford quality recording equipment. Then I discovered all I needed was a 'line in cable' which I bought at my local dollar store!


     
  4. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    thanks

    Thanks to you both. I will try all of the above.

    mgasilva wrote:
    Yes, some keys are missing. They didn't make it with 88 keys. I think it's around 3 keys missing on each side of the piano or something like that.
    I have been toying with the Pianissimo software, but can't really seem to fix latency issues, so I'm not sure what to do there. It also seems to be louder while using the mouse instead of the keyboard itself. I am very knew to recording and trying to get a good sound and so on, so all of this is very useful, thanks.
     
  5. mgasilva

    mgasilva New Member

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    Latency

    Latency issues will only be resolved if you have an ASIO capable sound card when using Windows. I heard linux has a low-latency oriented distro (I think it is UBUNTU Studio) but have never used it. Even if you don't have a professional soundcard you can use ASIO4ALL, which is simply put an ASIO driver that works for almost any soundcard windows can use; it will provide results varying in accordance with the computing power of your main processor. The interface is a bit buggy some times, and it has been known to freeze the system every once in while, but for amateur applications it works wonders. To get really great results your computer should have a Core 2 Duo processor or better. You can download ASIO4ALL at www.asio4all.com and best, it's free.

    After installing it, the ASIO4ALL driver will appear as an option for output (usually under the audio - options menu - select ASIO and not MME or WINDOWS WAVE MAPPER); choose a latency that suits your system (start with a high number of samples such as 512 and go down from there); do not forget to choose the ASIO output channels properly - usually the same output named as your soundcard - e.g. Realtek High Definition Audio.

    You know, about trying all the options, Pianoteq has a great trial version that works for 20 minutes and some keys are silent, but at least you can get a real feeling of what it sounds like.
     
  6. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Re: thanks

    Very strange that they'd want to skimp on a couple of keys, presumably to keep the product a little cheaper. Admittedly you don't need the highest and lowest keys every day but if you do it's a real pain.
     
  7. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    Yes, this is true.

    techneut wrote:
    Yes, this is true. Also, now my midi connector has broken! I will have to buy a new cable before I do any recording, and by then my trial period may be over.
    Ah, the joys of learning new things.
    My new job starts piano teaching job starts around next Thursday. I'm a little nervous, but I'm also looking forward to it.

    Ok all these tips are great. I don't know much about sound cards, but I can ask my brother, he'd be able to help me. I know, however, that I do have realtek installed and in use, but for some reason the recording sliders are missing. Perhaps that's not so important. I will have to try Piano Tech out when I find a new cable.
    Thanks
     

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