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Topic: Prospective user looking for equipment recommendation

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  1. #1

    Prospective user looking for equipment recommendation

    Hi all,

    I've been out of the sequencing/writing world for over 10 years, and am just starting to put together a new home studio. I'm in love with what I see about the authorized Steinway software, and am mostly convinced I'll get the Pro version.

    My keyboard is a Kurzweil PC-88, about 15 years old. It works well, so I'm not sure I want to replace it, but I do have a couple concerns.

    I'm reading about how the Garritan Steinway software has varying pedal response. My pedal is just an on-off switch made to look like a piano pedal, plugged into the PC-88 switch pedal jack. I've been out of this for a while... what are some pedals that can read variable data in terms of how far it's pushed? I have a couple of fader pedals I used to use when in bands, but I'm guessing there's something better out there. Also, how about the keyboard input? Would a newer damper pedal that can sense how far it's pushed just plug into my continuous controller jack?

    Last, what are some good midi-control keyboards I should look at to replace my PC-88? I'd want 88 hammer-action keys.

    Thanks in advance for any guidance. I know this isn't strictly a question about the Steinway software, but I can't think of a better group of people to ask in terms of who would really know.

    Thanks!
    Rachel

  2. #2

    Re: Prospective user looking for equipment recommendation

    Welcome to the forum!

    I use a Roland FP-4 strictly as a controller (it has a switch so I can totally turn off the speakers). For pedals I use three of the Roland DP-8; one set to continuous (the damper) and the other two set as on/off.

    It works great!

  3. #3
    Senior Member bigears's Avatar
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    Re: Prospective user looking for equipment recommendation

    Hi and Welcome! I've been using the CME triple pedal for over a year with success. It's a USB pedal, so you can use it regardless of the input capabilities of your keyboard, it plugs into your computer and integrates with your MIDI program. I think it's still around $100. John


  4. #4

    Re: Prospective user looking for equipment recommendation

    Quote Originally Posted by Locolady View Post

    My keyboard is a Kurzweil PC-88, about 15 years old. It works well, so I'm not sure I want to replace it, but I do have a couple concerns.

    I'm reading about how the Garritan Steinway software has varying pedal response. My pedal is just an on-off switch made to look like a piano pedal, plugged into the PC-88 switch pedal jack. I've been out of this for a while... what are some pedals that can read variable data in terms of how far it's pushed? I have a couple of fader pedals I used to use when in bands, but I'm guessing there's something better out there. Also, how about the keyboard input? Would a newer damper pedal that can sense how far it's pushed just plug into my continuous controller jack?

    Last, what are some good midi-control keyboards I should look at to replace my PC-88? I'd want 88 hammer-action keys.

    Thanks in advance for any guidance. I know this isn't strictly a question about the Steinway software, but I can't think of a better group of people to ask in terms of who would really know.

    Thanks!
    Rachel
    Hi Rachel,

    Like you, I've been using a Kurzweil PC-88 for many years and love it, especially the touch. I have not felt the need to keep up with, or invest in, any more recent keyboard MIDI controllers. Can't imagine what all they would add, except some more sliders (for my needs, the 4 sliders on the PC-88 have always been more than adequate), or a more sophisticated on-board sequencer (which I don't need at all). I also have an (even older) Yamaha KX88 as a standby controller, but don't really use it much anymore. I much prefer the feel of the Kurzweil.

    Working with the Pro version of the Steinway library, I can tell you it is a marvelous fit. As you probably know, you can adjust the velocity feel either in the keyboard itself or in the program's parameters (or both). I find the Garritan Steinway sound provides a much warmer, truer piano sound than those onboard Kurzweil piano sounds, which were for me the benchmark some years back.

    As for the proportional pedal stuff: I, too, was very interested in seeing how well this was implemented (being a professional pianist). I've always had trouble with single damper pedals, having to 'chase them' around the floor while trying to keep playing. (Must have a heavy pedal foot or something; maybe I use the pedal more than others do.) In any case, as I see it, a proportional damper pedal should work on the PC-88 – i.e., if it were plugged in to one of the continous control pedal jacks and configured for CC64 (sustain). I actually ordered one of the wooden 3-pedal units CME put out last year. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a defective unit and had to be returned. Now, it turns out that nobody is carrying them anymore. CME (based in China) is not shipping them to anyone. So I think that option is off the table, contrary to what bigears wrote above. I believe that's the reason Gary no longer responds to questions about any 'special deal' he was going to work out with CME for his Steinway users.

    So there, for what it's worth, is my wholehearted endorsement of the Steinway in conjunction with the PC-88. In my experience, they work just fine together. If I were you, I'd go for it.

    All the best ...

    Bob V

  5. #5

    Question Re: Prospective user looking for equipment recommendation

    cme pedal its seems that it might be getting a face lift just a guess

    http://www.musiciansbuy.com/Yamaha_G...edal_GPP3.html

  6. #6

    Re: Prospective user looking for equipment recommendation

    At that link, as you can see, they admit that they don't have any units in stock. Nobody does. I'd be very surprised if the CME pedal shipment arrives when they say it is scheduled to arrive. There have been similar promises ever since the middle of last year. None have panned out. So I have basically given up on trusting the word of CME. You, of course, can come to your own conclusions. Sorry to be so pessimistic, but I try to learn from past experience.

    Bob V

  7. #7

    Question Re: Prospective user looking for equipment recommendation

    it was just a thought I saw the pedal in a pic at namm, but your right about trusting CME when I received my pedal I ended up finishing the factory work missing screw on pedal mount and a bad switch on the soft pedal other than that it works , as far as support I rate it at zero

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