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Topic: Using PMI Libraries Live in Mono - please lend me your ear...

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  1. #1

    Question Using PMI Libraries Live in Mono - please lend me your ear...

    I'd like to start taking my PMI pianos out for gigging (Old Lady, Emperor, Bos290). I own a single Mackie SRM 450 which means I believe, that I can only play "Mono". My problem stems from the fact that I cannot hear the real difference between Stereo and Mono, as I am completely deaf in my right ear.

    Could somebody tell me if it would be best to convert the sample libraries to Mono, or if I should do it using hardware (cables?), and if they sound ok in Mono (no phase issues, etc.)

    Thanks in advance for your help!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: Using PMI Libraries Live in Mono - please lend me your ear...

    I use two SRM-450s on gigs, usually side by side or spread by just a couple of feet.

    The thing that I notice is not so much the stereo, but just having enough "cone" to simulate the vibrational surface of a piano. Obviously two 450s doesn't do that, but it's closer than one.

    That said, you have one. So I would just pan dead center and call it good. There will be many other factors in the setup which will probably have more impact on the sound the audience experiences than the comb filtering you'll get. You're going to get it no matter how you combine the channels...and some instruments are recorded more mono-compatibly than others.

    I would not recommend running the PMI Bosendorfer in combined mono...I have tried that, and the very live room tone just doesn't lend itself to being combined. The PMI Steinway D, on the other hand, combines with very few artifacts. I am not familiar with the newer versions, or how their resonances balance into the overall tone.

    You could also (if your stage mixer has enough routing) monitor in mono through your 450, and send the stereo signal to the house. That would be a decent compromise, and would give the house engineer more options. I'm not sure what size venues you're playing, so this may be moot if it's just a small setting where you're providing all the amplification with your own rig.

    If the sample is not done in a radical "player perspective" you might get the cleanest mono from simply choosing one channel over the other, and not using the second channel at all. You will definitely reduce the possibility of comb-filter anomalies to zero with that method!!

    In my experience, the pianos with "room" in them are generally bad choices for stage work, since you're playing a room into a room. That equals mush. The exception would be a room which was very absorbent, with enough PA in it that the audience hears mostly PA. Even then, the dry pianos tend to work better, since the house engineer can put exactly how much reverb he needs for the mix without having to deal with reverb being fed to him by someone on stage (who can't hear the whole mix).

  3. #3

    Re: Using PMI Libraries Live in Mono - please lend me your ear...

    Bruce,
    I was hoping you would read my post, thanks for your reply. I am just looking for my setup to take the place of an actual grand piano as I only play solo, restaurants, weddings, etc. I don't have any mixing equipment, my soundcard is hooked up directly to the Mackie. It sounds like I should convert my close mic'ed libraries to mono using either the left or right channel, and comparing the two to find out which channel sounds better.

    Thanks again,
    Dennis

  4. #4

    Re: Using PMI Libraries Live in Mono - please lend me your ear...

    Hi Bruce and Pianoman,

    I'm a happy owner of 2 Mackie SRM-450. They are incredible for live.
    (Price/quality)


    Regards,

    Olivier

  5. #5

    Re: Using PMI Libraries Live in Mono - please lend me your ear...

    I got the hint, and I'm saving to get a second one ...

    Olivier (and others) - what libraries do you use for live playing?

  6. #6

    Re: Using PMI Libraries Live in Mono - please lend me your ear...

    Hi,
    I use Galaxy 5.1 Steinway in my live gig. I play jazz in a small club. I use a single Mackie SRM 350 but now I'm searching a good (and small) PA system for my piano because I want to hear my Galaxy in stereo.
    I red good reviews about "Dawn 510" sub+satellite system, do you know it?

    Robi

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