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Watched a bunch of videos from 7NoteMode on YouTube and thought it sounded great!

Unfortunately, even after matching his settings, the sound is nowhere near as beautiful or enchanting.

Help?


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I am pretty sure in most demo videos he did and he said so .. IIRC, he uses a bit of post processing for the videos, use of compressors etc.

Certainly that is the case with most of his performance videos as well. I recall reading some of his posts/blogs where he stated that the plugins he uses were sufficiently CPU intensive and costing more than ACD itself when I checked them out, he could not use them in real time anyway, but his laptop wasn't that powerful at the time.


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FWIW, Google him, he has a website where he discusses that stuff in various blogs with useful comments in them from what I recall.


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Originally Posted by Alexander Borro
I am pretty sure in most demo videos he did and he said so .. IIRC, he uses a bit of post processing for the videos, use of compressors etc.

Certainly that is the case with most of his performance videos as well. I recall reading some of his posts/blogs where he stated that the plugins he uses were sufficiently CPU intensive and costing more than ACD itself when I checked them out, he could not use them in real time anyway, but his laptop wasn't that powerful at the time.

Thanks. I checked it out and you were right.

My PC is *quite* powerful so I'd like to have the ability to make it sound like that in real-time.


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My 2 cents.

Post production multiband compression is the secret sauce laugh
Not sure how well you can master that live. But compression, yay!

/Robert

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Originally Posted by robbah99
My 2 cents.

Post production multiband compression is the secret sauce laugh
Not sure how well you can master that live. But compression, yay!

/Robert


I never liked using too much compression during life playing it screws up dynamics. I find it interferes with the feel of playing somehow and connection with the instrument, in subtle amounts it can be okay though and hardly noticeable, as you say Post is key, I do find that myself anyway.

For serious day to day practice with Ivory I just stick close to the defaults mostly. I turned up the release samples up a little bit, and sympathetic and sustain resonance a bit too. Dynamic range at about 50 dB. soft samples on, half pedal on and use one of the different sound boards, turned up the number of voices. That's my default set for praccy.

Pity ivory has no advanced compressor build in for post rendering, but there are plenty plugins to do it, the trim knob in some sort of way is a compressor I guess, but nothing like a decent compressor.

Strat, perhaps of interest if you are looking over the fence at something else in future, especially for non classical, It is one things I like about the new NI pianos grandeur maverick etc. they come with a nice effects section, as well as some useful compressors that are all fairly decent, I find them a nice sort of all in one box solution type pianos.

Also, I find their tone rich enough even without any compression, they don't really need it, or even reverb. Dry they sound good too (IMHO). I get the impression they got quite bit of resonance already as they were sampled anyway ( which can be a problem in its own way I am finding, different story ). Damper resonance is separately adjustable as well as attack and release, which is nice too, I like the overall design of these pianos.

In the end no piano has it all I guess, the few I have and came across so far, but some do some parts better than others. IMHO grandeur steinway and Maverick in some ways sounds more pleasing to me in terms of just samples over Ivory out of the box, it just seems like there is more fidelity/detail there and cleaner recording. I like the way they were miced.

Grandeur or the other NI pianos can be got dirt cheap often on offers, typically black Friday. I got all three pianos for around 60 GBP with a voucher I had too, bargain for that money, no regrets whatsoever smile

Whatever one may say about playability of both and dynamic range, which is another thing, they both have their strengths, but both are very nice instruments in the end of the day I can very much enjoy.


Last edited by Alexander Borro; 03/31/16 06:38 PM.

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Compression can be good. Compression can be bad.

I think it was invented to serve the way music is used, starting with phonograph and radio. When music left the concert hall and appeared instead in homes, offices, and automobiles, it had to compete with ambient noise (and with the noise of the recording processes and media). Compression solves those problems (sort of).

But if ambient conditions don't warrant compression it ought not be used. It interferes with the expressiveness of the music.

Sadly though, much modern music is written to serve in venues where compression is called for (and expected). So, even in an environment that does not require compression, that music often lacks the dynamic expressiveness that might otherwise benefit from the naturalness of uncompressed performance.

None of this is universal. But it has become widespread.

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If I lowered the Dynamic Range control, would that essentially act as a compressor and therefore increase my chances of mimicking the sound of 7notemode's YT videos?


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Strat, I don't think so.

What the dynamics knob will do, it will lift the volume of softest sounds relative to the loudest, typically it works like that that the loudest notes stay the same at the max of your velocity curve , but the softest will simply sound louder. In essence, it will not alter the body or response of the tone from the samples as they are ( as far as I understand it ). Try it and see, that is what it sounds like to me anyway.

While at first impression that may sound like what a compressor does, compressors can work in different ways and come in various types an have a lot more configurability than that.

I suspect, the way 7notemode uses them in a way that it adds to the body of the tone to make it just that little bit richer, without knowing the plugins and settings he uses. That is what it sounded like to me as far as I recall. I felt he used them well though, in a way to not colour the original tone of the library too much but just enough to give that extra ....

When compressors are used heavily enough in certain ways however they can alter the timbre/tone significantly, to a point it becomes unrecognisable from the sound produced the piano library would have in its basic form. As an example, since I mentioned the NI pianos earlier with their compressors settings build in, they are well capable of doing just that. ( which is why I think, or I would advice anyone should never trust their demos to know what the plain sound of their pianos actually sound like )

In any case, Most DAWs have at least some basic compressors build in to have a play and start experimenting if you want. I bet if you search there are probably some fairly decent free plugins floating about. Perhaps some will chime in but if you use reaper it may well have some you can try for free (with a 30 day trial or something like that IIRC ).

Cubase I use, the cheap elements version not that expensive, i.e. not the full cubase version costing several hundreds still came with half decent limiter, compressor, and maximiser. They all work fairly well to do similar sort of tricks, and even came supplied with several presets for pianos.

Coming to think of it, the cantabile player that comes with ivory supports up to 2 insert channels to add third party vst plugins. You wouldn't even need a DAW to get started with. See if there are some third party freebies, for example, to get you going check out some here

http://bedroomproducersblog.com/2012/02/18/bpb-freeware-studio-best-free-compressor-vstau-plugins/

Have fun smile

edit: btw I don't use compressors with ivory myself but I know vsts plugins work well with cantabile without issue. Some of my personal presets I do disable the whole effect section in ivory, and I use a third party reverb plugin instead.

Last edited by Alexander Borro; 04/08/16 09:56 AM.

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Books: Barratt classic piano course bk 1,2,3. Humphries Piano handbook, various...
Kawai CA78, Casio AP450 & software pianos.
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Which of 7notemode's videos would you single out as typical of his Ivory sound?

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Originally Posted by dire tonic
Which of 7notemode's videos would you single out as typical of his Ivory sound?


Dire tonic. In 7 notemode case I'd have to go through some, it has been a while but I am not sure there would be one in his case. They all sounded pretty much like how the Ivory ACD sounds to me. It just seemed that little bit richer perhaps (going from memory right now though).

Personally I don't think there is substantial enough difference that would actually make me feel that listening to his demos and settings he uses for post production, and then when trying the real thing myself ( when I did buy it myself afterwards ) that I had the same feeling/reaction as Strat did. i.e to say, that I didn't like it in basic form versus the settings he uses to take it suddenly to the next level. Others clearly feel different about it.

Personally I felt the demos he did reflected the instrument well enough to give me a decent enough impression of its sound, that's how I remember it anyway.



Selftaught since June 2014.
Books: Barratt classic piano course bk 1,2,3. Humphries Piano handbook, various...
Kawai CA78, Casio AP450 & software pianos.
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It is worth mentioning that YouTube does [url=http://productionadvice.co.uk/youtube-loudness/ on playback. You might have noticed how most videos have a very similar loudness, ie, you can make a random playlist of whatever songs (no matter what style) and they will all have the same loudness pretty much.

Piano libraries are not very loud by default, this is true for most of them (Pianoteq is the only one that sounds balanced out of the box from what I've used).

You might think that loudness is not related to tone, but unfortunately, our human ears are incredibly biased towards loud sounds. I wouldn't say "better", but we perceive the sound differently depending on its loudness.


There's, of course, the option of post production (even live post production). I personally use an EQ and multiband compressor to fine tune the sound with Galaxy Vintage D, and then feed that to a limiter to increase the loudness...and then I get a sound that is much closer to what you typically hear in a youtube video.

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I can see scope for compression for 'piano in the mix' at forte/fortissimo but I wouldn't have thought there's much advantage for solo piano where you're more likely to want a wide dynamic range. Maybe slightly different for jazz which tends to be less dynamically subtle. But I still don't see the point in compression if the pianist is playing f/ff anyway.

Another thing about the 'sound'. So much of that is in the music and style of playing.


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