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Topic: New User, some questions?

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  1. #1

    New User, some questions?

    Hello, first time here. Been lurking around to get some information and most of it is way beyond me. I have a new Kawai CA51 and would like to be able to use more piano sounds. I am especially interested in the Sampletekk RainPiano and Harpsichord since I am interested in Scott Joplin and some Bach and Mozart. So far I have tried the Cantabile Lite and some of the free plug-ins. Computer is a 6 year old P4 with (soon) 1.5GB DDR PC2700 memory, WD 80GB HD, SB Audigy4 sound card with ASIO2. Is this computer capable of keeping up with the midi info in real time, like when I play? I have the extra memory and a USB A/B cable on order so far.

    Other issue is I really only want to use this for playing, not to mix or record or manipulate midi files. I was looking at the Halion Player, is this good enough to just do real time playing with the Sampletekk plug-ins or is there a sampler that I can use with the plug-ins that is more economical or simpler (read more computer efficient)? The Cantabile does about what I really need to do if I can get the piano sounds I want. It is not that price is much of an issue, I just don't think I need all that software to do real time playing only. I just play for myself, not for audiences, etc.

    Thanks for any help.
    DogT
    CA51
    Murdoch & Murdoch Upright

  2. #2

    Re: New User, some questions?

    Looks like your setup is ready to go save for two more concerns: you need a software sampler like Kontakt to load the piano samples into, and also a second hard disk to stream the samples from.

    I'd say you should get 16-bit versions instead of 24-bit of whatever piano you want so that you'll be able to play smoothly on your 6 year old P4.

    Edit: I see that you're considering the Halion player. I don't know but from what I've been reading, Kontakt and Gigastudio are as good if not better.

  3. #3

    Re: New User, some questions?

    Yes, I looked at Kontakt and Gigastudio, but they are $4-600 USD, where the Halion Player is around $120, and I don't need a lot of features, all I want to do is get new piano sounds out of my DP.

    Do the software samplers do the streaming from another HD or is that something I need to look into?

    Thanks,
    DogT
    CA51
    Murdoch & Murdoch Upright

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    211

    Re: New User, some questions?

    One way to get a good piano is the Bosendorfer 290 from Native Instruments. It comes with its own player, Kompakt. If you want to do midi or audio recording You'll need some music software. I use Bos 290 on my P4. Don't know about Harpsicord.
    Dave M.
    Correction. Bos 290 is a VST instrument. You need the music software, DAW, like Sonar or Cubase to load it into.

  5. #5

    Re: New User, some questions?

    Quote Originally Posted by commalot View Post
    One way to get a good piano is the Bosendorfer 290 from Native Instruments. It comes with its own player, Kompakt.
    The Kompakt Player PMI Bösendorfer 290 = $180 (from EastWest)
    PMI Bösendorfer 290 = $50 (from SampleTekk)

    HALion Player + PMI Bösendorfer 290 sample library might be a better bargain

  6. #6

    Re: New User, some questions?

    IMO the Budgeteer's top choice is Art Vista's Virtual Grand - a Steinway B. It'll function in "standalone" mode, so no other apps required. You can also load it into Cantabile as a VST instrument.

    Art Vista's home page is http://www.artvista.net/

    The developer's own Introduction/Improvisation demo comes closest to showing this piano to its best advantage, tho all the demos were created with the original version, not the current one.

  7. #7

    Re: New User, some questions?

    C'mon guys. I am interested mostly in the RainPiano which is an upright sample which I would use for Scott Joplin. I have 3 Grand types and 2 harpsichords on my CA51 already, although I suppose I would like some better ones if they were reasonable and available. Anyway, I need to find out what the Sampletekk VSTI will work with. Has anyone tried it with Cantibile or Cantibile Light? I mean that would be the most cost effective solution, although Sampletekk only guarantees their samples with Kontakt, Halion, Gigasample and Native. I don't think I need a huge program just to play in real time. I don't need to record, resample, etc.

    The other issue is the computer. Like the ArtVista, they say it will work with a 1.4GHz P4 and 512 RAM, but suggest a 2.4G P4, and 2 G ram. If I need to get a new computer, that really pushes up the finances, at least $300 for the basic computer, $200 for a halfway decent monitor which I will need anyhow, and then the software, plug ins, etc. This could run up to nearly $800 just so I can play different samples on my piano. It's not that I can't afford it, it is an issue of whether I think it is worth the money to me, granted that is my issue. Can anyone say I will be happy with my old computer and perhaps it's latency issues?
    DogT
    CA51
    Murdoch & Murdoch Upright

  8. #8

    Re: New User, some questions?

    Quote Originally Posted by DogT View Post
    Can anyone say I will be happy with my old computer and perhaps it's latency issues?
    Yes, it will work. I had an Intel Celeron 433 mHz with 1GB RAM which I used to play with the 16-bit Bardstown Bosendorfer and it worked fine, no cracks or pops.

    Go get Halion and the 16-bit Rain Piano.

    Enjoy!

    Edit: I can't assure you, however, that after having the Rain Piano, you won't want to check out the Vertikals, then the Akoustik Steingraeber, then the Vintaudio Uprights, then the Schimmel, and then...

  9. #9

    Re: New User, some questions?

    Well, maybe that is what I should do. Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead. I should just figure that I need to do what I need to do. If the computer doesn't work up to expectations, get a new one. I have been somewhat disappointed with the CA51 sound, so I hope it can be improved. Lets go for it. I will let everyone know at any rate.

    Thanks
    DogT
    CA51
    Murdoch & Murdoch Upright

  10. #10

    Re: New User, some questions?

    Quote Originally Posted by DogT View Post
    Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.
    Now, that's the spirit. Go blast'em, soldier!

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