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Topic: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

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  1. #1

    Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    Looking for acoustic piano samples for Giga or Kontakt (preferably Giga) that can stand on there own (solo piano). Sorry, I did a search on piano and did not really get anything recent and specific.

    I know acoustic pianos pretty well. I worked as a dealer and did work for some of the major piano manufacturers. I like certain models of the different manufactures. I know the Steinway D is great, I'm sure it is the most used concert grand in this country. The Baldwin 7' piano is also very good. And I also like the Yamaha C7.

    Is there anything sampled that comes close to the sound of these great instruments? I would also consider a virtual instrument if appropriate.

    Thanks for the help!

    Santo

  2. #2
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    Re: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    wow Lee Blaske I actually agree with you hear on pianos.
    I really think that yea Sample pianos are amazing but when I sit down at a piano there is just something there that i don't get in the samples, is it the colorful tone between each key or is just the feel of the piano, I dont know.
    It seems to me I will constantly be buying more piano libs and testing them out. I have had good results with PMI Bos290 at the moment in K2.
    So many pianos Samples so little time
    Steinway and Yamaha are brighter sounding pianos. One thing I have noticed is you really can't use one piano Lib for all styles of music, certian Libs work well for certian styles, they all have a certain character that comes through in the music.
    The BOS290 from PMI is great for Classical Piano I think it is dark sound and very expressive and dynamic.
    All I can Say is...HA!...HA!...HAAAAAAA!!!!!

  3. #3

    Re: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    Quote Originally Posted by santo
    Is there anything sampled that comes close to the sound of these great instruments? I would also consider a virtual instrument if appropriate.
    Santo
    Hi Santo,
    The main question when considering if samples come close to a real piano is how you are going to use them. If you want a sample to replace the real piano so you can sit down and play the samples in your room or studio and get the perfect replacement of an acoustic piano I believe you will be a little disappointed. No sample set at this moment will give you a 100% replacement of the acoustic experience.
    However, if you need a sample for recordings things brighten up quite a bit. Just 2 years ago my company did a "real or sampled" contest in this forum with a real Bosendorfer 290 and the sampled version. You can read the topic here. The results were pretty amazing. There was a 50%/50% chance that they would guess the real recording; no more than luck. Our PMI Bosendorfer 290, and more specifically the wet or ambient version, eludes must if not all listeners.
    It is now in use by over 5.000 buyers (and most likely a multitude of that number counting in illegal copies) and the vast majority shares one opinion; this sample set is remarkably realistic. It even comes to a point where some users said: "I find the PMI Bosendorfer 290 too realistic to use in my pop arrangements. I need a more artificial pop piano sound." Naturally we were very flattered by this remark.

    So to answer your question, yes, I think you can use a sample like the PMI Bosendorfer 290 very well to come close to the sound of a real piano when recording is involved. And no, when you want to acoustic experience, nothing comes close (yet).
    Please take a moment to listen to some of the demos we made with the Bosendorfer 290: PMI Bos290 demo page.
    Best regards,
    Michiel Post


  4. #4

    Re: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Blaske
    It's going to be some time before samples equal sitting down at a big, beautifully maintained and voiced concert grand from the standpoint of sound, nuance, feel and control.
    Being a producer of sampled instruments, and among those, many pianos, I agree!
    We can come close, and in a A/B test, just listening to a recording, you might get so close that it's probably very, very hard to tell the difference. But in a live situation, if one piano would be played live and one using samples, I think that you could spot the difference easily.
    If you are a musician, actually playing, the difference between playing a real Steinway and a sampled one, is probably even more significant.

    Now, why on earth are we using sampled pianos and samples in general. Well, it's not all that can have a Bose, a Steinway and a Yamaha in their livingroom, but you can have them in your computer! Also, sampled pianos are a real time-saver in the studio. You instantly get a well sounding, well tuned piano without having to mike up a grand, having a piano tech standing buy through the session and so on.

    The best way to try sampled pianos are to play them. Also listen to as much demos as possible, read what other people have to say, but first of all, play them.
    Some companies, including SampleTekk, provides with playable demos that you can download and try out for yourself. Our demos has two full octaves and all the C's. This way you, yourself, can decide if the pianos fits your needs.
    Worra
    SampleTekk

    Arf, arf, arf...

  5. #5

    Re: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    Santo,

    Perharps you should check this site:
    http://www.purgatorycreek.com/
    (Digital Piano Shootout)

    It's quite good for a starting point (not as good as playing by yourself ) to sort out the best ones. They've used the same midi for all libraries. Then you should check the sites of the selected libraries and listen to their own demos. It's hard to recommend any of these, because you probably have a personal taste, and know well the sound you want.

    Regards,
    Lorant

    PS: I realized that libraries with Gigastudio sound better than EXS24 (i converted them with CDXtract, becouse EXS make some mistakes). Can it be true? Anyone?

  6. #6

    Re: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    So to answer your question, yes, I think you can use a sample like the PMI Bosendorfer 290 very well to come close to the sound of a real piano when recording is involved. And no, when you want to acoustic experience, nothing comes close (yet).
    Please take a moment to listen to some of the demos we made with the Bosendorfer 290: PMI Bos290 demo page. __________________
    Michiel Post
    Creative Director
    Post Musical Instruments
    www.postpiano.com
    Thanks very much for the replies and suggestions. I am looking for samples for recording not to be used live. However, the recordings feature the piano in some parts as in a piano + sting quartet.

    Michiel,

    I am curious why your company chose a Bosendorfer to sample. Having come from working for piano manufacturers and having played many piano brands, including many of the boutique European instruments, why not a Steinway? I think Bosendofers of course are great pianos, but it is not the most widely used instrument.

    I will check out your samples.

    Thanks again for the suggestions.

    Santo

  7. #7

    Re: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    The closest I came across in piano emulation is the VGP from ArtVista. Many users attest they simply could sit down and play it, no need to adjust things later in the process. It's a Virtual Instrument, so no additional costs on samplers or anything to run it and can be run on both PC and Mac euqally. It comes with a myriad of recording presets varying from classical to jazz styles and special recording styles adapted to actual recordings of famous pianists! I just love it!

    Make sure you check that out!
    PolarBear

  8. #8

    Re: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    Post Musical (Michiel's company), does both Bosendorfer and Steinway as well as a Yamaha I believe..

    but I too am curious why he only mentioned the Bosendorfer not the Steinway, which like you I prefer the sound of.

    rsp
    richard sven
    sound sculptist
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  9. #9

    Re: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    I would not forget the importance of the hardware part: the controller keyboard.
    I think this could make a huge difference when you're evaluating sampled pianos, and I would be curious to read the developers' opinion based on their experience.

    Regarding the libraries/plugs in my experience, hands up for PMI Bosendorfer 290 (very analytical) and Art Vista Malmsjo and Virtual Grand Piano (especially on the "expressiveness" side, and the last one also for its interesting concept of presets). Anyway it's a good moment for piano libraries, so many good options :-)

  10. #10

    Re: Acoustic Piano Samples that can go solo, sorry, been out of touch

    Quote Originally Posted by santo
    Michiel,
    I am curious why your company chose a Bosendorfer to sample. ...
    why not a Steinway?
    Santo
    Hi Santo,
    I simply promote the Bosendorfer 290 sample I made because it´s one of those sample libraries that is absolutely in a league of its own and you cannot go wrong with it.
    The Bosendorfer 290 was sampled following a method that results in the purest reproduction of the original piano without ending up with a 10 GB data monster. Bos 290 is just 2 GB (Giga2) or 3 GB (all other formats) and offers enough velocity layers and recorded microphone positions to be used in any situation. The method I speak of was only available for this Bosendorfer and not for Steinways and Yamahas (at that time).
    Another reason why I promote the Bosendorfer 290 is that it´s also available as a Virtual Instrument (trough EastWest) beside the normal sample software formats (Giga, Kontakt, Halion and EXS24). So everybody can use it regardless their computer hardware or software situation.

    We also used the same method mentioned above to sample a Model 1923 Steinway D (the model and year that many pianists claim to be the best series of pianos ever made by Steinway) for a product we called "PMI Old Lady". However this piano is not available with its own sample playback engine. It is one of the best Steinway samples available (naturally in my humble opinion ). So if you like Steinways over Bosendorfers this could be your choice.
    I (and many with me) always say that you need to think about buying several piano samples, since each sample has its merits and this will bring you a palette of sounds to choose from.
    For this reason I offer bundles in my on-line store : GOLD BUNDLE is a Bosendorfer called EMPEROR and the OLD LADY, The Grandioso Bundle (Bosendorfer, Steinway and Yahama) or Piano Magic (8 pianos).
    Best regards,
    Michiel Post


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