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Topic: GPO Steinway and CC#64

  1. #1

    GPO Steinway and CC#64

    Here's the scoop...

    I put a piece in the Listening room recently. There have been a couple of comments about it and not too flattering. Hey, it's to be expected and it was certainly helpful. The problem from their listening point was that the reverbs for piano and the rest of the instruments sounded different. I knew that wasn't the case since they were all being sent to a bus that had Perfect Space reverb and all instruments that had reverb were using that bus.

    After examining the problem mentioned by my friends in their comments, I determined that the problem seems to be more with the piano than much of anything else (well maybe some balance issues but that is my ears and the tinnitus that masks a lot). When I audition the piano (I'm in Sonar X2) by itself, I noticed that the sustain pedal on the ARIA engine looks like it is working correctly, but the sound comes through as if the sustain pedal is depressed on the piano and never lifted during the entire piece of music. Consequently the piano has all the strings vibrating without once being dampened. That is not a very pretty sound (at least I don't think so).

    Has anyone else experienced this problem? And if so, how did you resolve it? I have been trying for days now to repost the piece and clean up some of the issues mentioned but I can't if the piano is going to sound so muddy.

    This is exacerbating to say the least. Any suggestions are more than welcome. Well, with the exception of buying the new Garritan piano that just came out as I cannot afford that. I do not ever recall having this problem in pieces that I used the Garritan Steinway from GPO.

    [Music is the Rhythm, Harmony and Breath of Life]
    "Music is music, and a note's a note" - Louis 'Satchmo' Armstrong


  2. #2

    Re: GPO Steinway and CC#64

    Hi, Rich - I heard "Ballad in May" for the first time just a little while ago. Since you're now asking for feedback on the mix, I thought I'd reply on this thread here.

    Ted and Max thought the piano sounded like it was in a different room from the rest of the instruments, but you've explained you used one reverb bus, with all tracks using sends to that bus. I do hear what they're referring to, and I think it's a matter of having too large a difference in your send amounts. The piano is much dryer, you wanted it closer, and so you do want it more dry, but with it this much dryer, the effect is that in its a different room.

    I don't hear the constant pedal effect you're talking about. It's not sounding to me like the piano is constantly ringing with un-dampened strings - Of course I could be wrong, but I don't think that's the issue. That's easy to check though - Bounce the MIDI track to audio, and solo the results. If you have the constant vibrating string effect in the audio - then you're correct. Never heard of the pedal not working on the Steinway though.

    You're using the player perspective - Maybe there's not another one available in that version of the Steinway? But the result is that there's this very wide stereo image, with the high notes over to the right, bass to the left. That's not at all what sounds right in an ensemble piece like you have here in your mix. If you're unable to choose a stage perspective, one from the audience's point of view - No problem, since you have Sonar. Put the Channel Tools plugin in the FX bin of the piano's audio track (even if you don't bounce to audio before mixing) - choose the pre-set that narrows the stereo field. And also choose the setting that flips the stereo image. Now the piano won't be so impossibly wide and with highs and lows going in the wrong direction like they currently are. To be more accurate, you can choose one pre-set - Just take a look at what happens with the plugin's sliders when you click a pre-set - then after choosing one, say the swap channels setting, then narrow the horizontal sliders as you saw them when auditioning the narrower pre-set.

    Besides a backwards stereo image, and the send too low - I can hear the compression on the whole mix, and with the piano in the spotlight, I can really hear it on that instrument. The sound is squashed, and pumping - just from using too much compression. For this piece, I think you should try it with no compression, just bring everything down so you don't peak out - See how it sounds. Then if you still decide on compression, be more subtle with it.

    Those are my observations on the track - Maybe some of that is useful.


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