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Topic: GPO Steinway

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  1. #1

    GPO Steinway

    I am working on my first orchestral piece with GPO. Of course, being a pianist there is a prominent role for the piano in the piece. Overall, I am happy with how the strings are sounding but I have never been able to get the sound I want with the GPO Steinway. I have not been able to get the sound I'm looking for with the Ambience reverb tool. I do like the "wet" version of the Steinway but it is a CPU hog. Many of you have done some great work with the piano in orchestrations where the placement sounds perfect - neither too distant nor too out front and a nice warm sound with the perfect reverb.

    I would really appreciate any tips and suggestions anybody might have for me on how to produce a better sounding GPO Steinway.

    Thanks much

  2. #2
    Senior Member rwayland's Avatar
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    Re: GPO Steinway

    Quote Originally Posted by Stiletto
    I am working on my first orchestral piece with GPO. Of course, being a pianist there is a prominent role for the piano in the piece. Overall, I am happy with how the strings are sounding but I have never been able to get the sound I want with the GPO Steinway. I have not been able to get the sound I'm looking for with the Ambience reverb tool. I do like the "wet" version of the Steinway but it is a CPU hog. Many of you have done some great work with the piano in orchestrations where the placement sounds perfect - neither too distant nor too out front and a nice warm sound with the perfect reverb.

    I would really appreciate any tips and suggestions anybody might have for me on how to produce a better sounding GPO Steinway.

    Thanks much
    It would be helpful to know what sequencer you are using. It would be a big improvement if you could use the VST version of GPO. I have some problems with soft, melodic, lyrical passages that I have yet to work out. I have recently begun such a piece, and expect to have some trouble with getting the Steinway as I want. For practice, I am testing with the opening to the Moonlight Sonata, and later, the overdone Liszt "Liebestraum".

    Richard

  3. #3
    Senior Member fastlane's Avatar
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    Re: GPO Steinway

    Check out Roomverb M2-$145.00. They have a demo you can try for Mac or PC.

    http://www.spinaudio.com/

  4. #4

    Re: GPO Steinway

    Quote Originally Posted by rwayland
    It would be helpful to know what sequencer you are using. It would be a big improvement if you could use the VST version of GPO. I have some problems with soft, melodic, lyrical passages that I have yet to work out. I have recently begun such a piece, and expect to have some trouble with getting the Steinway as I want. For practice, I am testing with the opening to the Moonlight Sonata, and later, the overdone Liszt "Liebestraum".

    Richard
    Bearing in mind, now, that the whole forum bows down in deep respect for my unparalleled technical ineptitude... lol:

    My experience -- or, I should say, what others here have kindly taught me -- is that the key mistake with Ambience is getting too heavy-handed with it. This is especially true in piano treatments. You instantly ruin the sound of a piano when you indulge in excessive sound treatment, in that the instrument has considerable resonance and reverbatory characteristics of its own that will acoustically conflict with artificially imposed reverb if it is overdone.

    And with mixing, whacking instruments way off to the left or right tends to produce a hollow, artificial sound, to my ear. Stay a bit more toward the center than a strictly logistical orchestral distribution might seem to suggest.

    With the piano, I tend to get the best results if I position it to the center, one instance per staff on different channels, edged just a little to left and right.

    Typically, the piano needs to be "voiced back" a bit (that is, lower the volume) -- it has considerable power to cut right through the orchestra, and it's a delicate balance to achieve. Too soft, it's gone. Too loud, and the piano just plain clobbers the orchestra, and sounds out of place.

    Hope that helps just a little!

    David
    www.DavidSosnowski.com
    .

  5. #5

    Re: GPO Steinway

    Quote Originally Posted by fastlane
    Check out Roomverb M2-$145.00. They have a demo you can try for Mac or PC.

    http://www.spinaudio.com/
    I recommend Roomverb too. I've compared it with many other algorythmic reverbs on the market and for effeciency and sound it stands among the best.

  6. #6

    Re: GPO Steinway

    Quote Originally Posted by etLux
    Bearing in mind, now, that the whole forum bows down in deep respect for my unparalleled technical ineptitude... lol:

    My experience -- or, I should say, what others here have kindly taught me -- is that the key mistake with Ambience is getting too heavy-handed with it. This is especially true in piano treatments. You instantly ruin the sound of a piano when you indulge in excessive sound treatment, in that the instrument has considerable resonance and reverbatory characteristics of its own that will acoustically conflict with artificially imposed reverb if it is overdone.

    And with mixing, whacking instruments way off to the left or right tends to produce a hollow, artificial sound, to my ear. Stay a bit more toward the center than a strictly logistical orchestral distribution might seem to suggest.

    With the piano, I tend to get the best results if I position it to the center, one instance per staff on different channels, edged just a little to left and right.

    Typically, the piano needs to be "voiced back" a bit (that is, lower the volume) -- it has considerable power to cut right through the orchestra, and it's a delicate balance to achieve. Too soft, it's gone. Too loud, and the piano just plain clobbers the orchestra, and sounds out of place.

    Hope that helps just a little!

    David
    www.DavidSosnowski.com
    .
    Thank you, David for your tips. I have listened to your music on your web site and admire how your piano sounds in your compositions. When you say that you position it to the center, one instance per staff on different channels I presume that this refers to a notation software that you use. I record to Sonar from a midi keyboard and don't use notation software.

    Thanks for all the tips and I will get to work.

  7. #7

    Re: GPO Steinway

    Quote Originally Posted by Stiletto
    Thank you, David for your tips. I have listened to your music on your web site and admire how your piano sounds in your compositions. When you say that you position it to the center, one instance per staff on different channels I presume that this refers to a notation software that you use. I record to Sonar from a midi keyboard and don't use notation software.

    Thanks for all the tips and I will get to work.
    That's correct -- I score in Finale 2006a.

    But the idea remains exactly the same. I put the piano treble and bass on different channels -- primarily so I can control the dynamics separately, but also so I can very slightly split the ranges, spatially.

    I hasten to add that, as per my post above, I am one of the least technically astute in this forum; and many of the works on www.DavidSosnowski.com are hardly good examples of best practices when it comes to sound treatment and recording technique.

    However, that approach (above) seemed to work well in the recent Ruminations On Providence and several other pieces I am still working on.

    David
    www.DavidSosnowski.com
    .

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