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Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: lolatu] #2643514
05/14/17 09:39 PM
05/14/17 09:39 PM
Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 14,425
Hamamatsu, Japan
Kawai James Offline
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Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted by lolatu
If anyone from Garritan is reading, perhaps you could fix this urgently?


While it's certainly possible that they may be reading PW and other forums, might I suggest that you consider contacting the developers directly.


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
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Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2643684
05/15/17 09:45 AM
05/15/17 09:45 AM
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Wow lot's of troubleshooting with the Garritan CFX.
I have the full version running as smooth as anything and with all buffers and samples set to maximalise the sound.
I have an I7 computer 16GB and RME internal soundcard.
I went to a custom computer shop and told them my new computer would have to run the CFX without any latency, cracks ,pops or whatever,,,,,
From day one (two years ago) it works flawlessly each and every time.

It is surprsingly ackward to read about so many problems,....i feel sorry for those who tried to make the CFX work.

I have purchased the Waves Grand Rhapsody this weekend and i like it very much.
The Garritan is of course different sounding , but the pedal samples, superb playability and more make it the best piano vst out there for me personally....althaugh the waves is a nice addition too.
It is extremely satisfactory to play the CFX, because it's that good.
I can't say the same about the Hammersmith pro, doesn't get used much, all because the Garritan is such an outstanding vst.

And the full CFX version allows for the personal creation of a wide variation of user presets.

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Gombessa] #2643689
05/15/17 10:10 AM
05/15/17 10:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Gombessa
Can I install CFX Grand on multiple computers? I assume once I create that pass card .png file, I can use that on multiple installations? I have a laptop from work and a home system I'd like to use it on, and need to know ahead of time if I'm only going to be stuck with one working copy at a time (or permanently).
I recently sent a related inquiry to the makemusic help request. I was interested in re-installing the software on one computer multiple times on different drives and even after fresh OS installs, all with one install operating at a time. The reply was that this should be no problem, all counting as one "usage" of the two that are allowed via the usage license, and that the png file used to authorize the software could even be downloaded again without using up another "usage". I'm unaware of any mechanism of enforcement of the usage limit. Hope that helps.


Beethoven, Bach -> Kawai CA-97 -> Garritan CFX Full -> Neumann Klein and Hummel 310s
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2643692
05/15/17 10:29 AM
05/15/17 10:29 AM
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Thanks very much similar, this pretty much answers my question!


Yamaha P-85, P-105, CP50 || Kawai NV-10, MP11
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Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2643762
05/15/17 02:24 PM
05/15/17 02:24 PM
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I finally pulled the trigger on the full version. Unfortunately, I also pulled the trigger on a Yamaha S90XS also. shocked

Well, I should be in DAW Piano and Synth heaven for awhile!

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Zilthy] #2643780
05/15/17 03:12 PM
05/15/17 03:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Zilthy
I finally pulled the trigger on the full version. Unfortunately, I also pulled the trigger on a Yamaha S90XS also. shocked

Well, I should be in DAW Piano and Synth heaven for awhile!


Nice! So, I went to see Hamilton this weekend, and guess what I saw in the orchestra pit?
[Linked Image]

That looks like one beefy machine, watch yourself with it!


Yamaha P-85, P-105, CP50 || Kawai NV-10, MP11
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2643824
05/15/17 05:03 PM
05/15/17 05:03 PM
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I can't believe people love this piano so much they willing to fork over for the full version. You only get an even brighter mic position with worse hammer noises and a player position, including some ambience samples, all of which just would make the sound worse and muddy. Add a good convolution reverb if you want to add ambience. The piano itself sounds flat, some of which can be fixed with a good eq, and has variable hammer noises on the samples. The only way I could live with this is to resample and fix the samples myself. I doubt Garritan gives a damn about the quality enough to fix it since they are raking in the cash on this. The Grand Piano 1 in Sampletank 3 sounds better than this one, not to mention the Grandeur and others. I only got the lite version to try out because of the way people gushed over it and am sorry I wasted my money. I will know better next time then to trust opinions on this site. For reference, I have played a variety of both Yamaha and Kawai pianos and have a CA-95 which sounds superb.

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2643831
05/15/17 05:16 PM
05/15/17 05:16 PM
Joined: Jul 2010
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Sweden
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The CFX sounds a bit flat and liveless, I feel the AcousticSamples C7 Grand has more body, judging from online demos. Some say they can't be trusted, but when I compare demos from the VSTs I do have, what I hear when playing them, sounds a lot like the online demos. Of course they don't say anything about the playability, except maybe the dynamic range.


My YouTube channel

Casio PX-5S. Garritan CFX. Prod. Voices: Grand 2 Gold, Concert Grand Compact, Est. Grand, Studio Grand LE. NI Giant. Galaxy II Blüthner Baby Grand. AcousticSamples C7. AK Studio Grand. Sampletekk Black. Kontakt 5. Reaper.
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2643892
05/15/17 08:46 PM
05/15/17 08:46 PM
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I'll have to spend some time looking into the AcousticSamples C7. Given the excellent job they did on the B5, this may be a better choice for a Yamaha library. They have at least some different closer mic'd positions that might be more usable, although I don't like mixing since it tends to introduce time alignment issues. Saw one vst that actually had an adjustable delay for each mic position which I thought was cool way to get around this problem. If recording, I can just separate the mic positions to different tracks and adjust the delay per track. I'll play around with resampling the CFX. Maybe I can get acceptable results. Would be nice if the CFX had a sample start adjustment or envelope control built in like I've seen on a few other vsts.

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: bsntn99] #2643956
05/16/17 02:38 AM
05/16/17 02:38 AM
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Originally Posted by bsntn99
I can't believe people love this piano so much they willing to fork over for the full version. You only get an even brighter mic position with worse hammer noises and a player position, including some ambience samples, all of which just would make the sound worse and muddy. Add a good convolution reverb if you want to add ambience. The piano itself sounds flat, some of which can be fixed with a good eq, and has variable hammer noises on the samples. The only way I could live with this is to resample and fix the samples myself. I doubt Garritan gives a damn about the quality enough to fix it since they are raking in the cash on this. The Grand Piano 1 in Sampletank 3 sounds better than this one, not to mention the Grandeur and others. I only got the lite version to try out because of the way people gushed over it and am sorry I wasted my money. I will know better next time then to trust opinions on this site. For reference, I have played a variety of both Yamaha and Kawai pianos and have a CA-95 which sounds superb.

Wow, i couldn't disagree more....
Do you personally have the full version of the CFX ? Because you must bo doing something wrong....terribly wrong in my opinion.
The Garritan is next to Pianoteq the most playable vst out there with minimal quirks , no weak registers (contrary to many top vst's like the Hammersmith) and superb sustain and softpedal implementation based on multiple samples instead of some lame overhyped physical modelling attempt. The 122 GB of memory is providing all you need.
Almost everyone who owns the full version praises the fact how extremely playable this Garritan is....

Sound is of course very personal and what person A consideres as warm, is ''out of tune'' for person B.
I personally love all wooden Kawai keybeds from the MP9000 till today.
I am heavily involved in the (digital) piano industry for 27 years and the CA-95 is an average sounding piano by todays standards.
To even remotely compare it to the Garritan CFX is very strange indeed.....no pun intended, but the obvious looped decay, few sample layers, static close samples are sounding extremely fake when you have played on the Garritan CFX for some time.(I do from a Kawai controler)
Really there is no going back to any hardware piano without noticing the various memory and other limitations that are sometimes hidden with some obvious weak physicall modelling attempts.

My friend has the Grandeur and the whole Komplete package .....the CFX is much better in every thinkable way, unless of course you dig a Steinway sound and hate Yamaha.
The grand piano 1 in sampletank 3 ? Sorry but this sounds like trolling,...i don't know why you would claim such a thing.....the only thing i can think of is that you didn't play the Garritan CFX full version from your Kawai CA-95 ever.
That's the only reasonable explaination i can think of......


Last edited by pianistje; 05/16/17 02:43 AM.
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2644064
05/16/17 11:22 AM
05/16/17 11:22 AM
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You are entitled to your opinion as I am mine. I could care less about your lengthy insulting diatribe. Count yourself lucky you do not hear these issues. Believe me I wish I didn't.

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2644067
05/16/17 11:26 AM
05/16/17 11:26 AM
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The pendulum in these threads always swings one way, and then the other smile

I just tried out CFX Full with my MBP (Compact for now as this rig is 128GB). I had a few hiccups getting MIDI through USB recognized (yep, gotta hit that MIDI Out button).

Once it was working, I routed the output from the mac into the DP's Line In so that I could directly A/B test the output against the built in tone generator.The output from CFX was distant, overly-reverbed, muffled, it sounded just horrible! I immediately thought I had made a huge mistake. But wait, I've listened to plenty of clips and videos of the Garritan and I know it doesn't sound like this.

So I decided to simplify and plugged my headphones directly into the laptop's headphone jack. WOW, that's what I recall hearing! With a clean output, the CFX Grand sounds clear, resonant, deep and complex. It's just amazing. I actually get that concert hall feeling when I play it...there's something about the detail/resolution in the sampling that elevates the level of realism and immersiveness for me. I can't wait for try the full-sized installation next, though I'm not expecting it to be head and shoulders better than the compact setup.

A couple of more critical observations as a first time software piano user:

1. The sustain pedal has this "creak" noise built into it, and if you enable partial pedaling it creaks every time you modulate the pedal. Is there a way to turn this off? The grands I play don't have creaky sustains and I find it kind of distracting.

2. Creak aside, is there a sustain-noise option? I like how the Roland and Kawai DPs have that soft loom-of-wires sound if you stomp the sustain too aggressively; it's on the acoustics I play and is good feedback for working on pedal technique.

3. There's an ever-so-slight latency compared to the built-in tone generator. It's not too distracting, but I do notice it. Does this intrinsically get better on a faster machine (my normal rig will be a more current quad-core MBP)? Or are there Mac settings I can fiddle with that have an appreciable effect on latency?

4. Is there a MIDI-record option? I like that Pianoteq feature that just auto-records the last xx sessions, so you can just sit and play and worry about a capture later.

5. The AIFF record controls are so cumbersome. You have to click a file first, then type out a name, then hit record? That's such a sit-at-your-PC workflow, and it's a complete hassle if your laptop is off to the side (where it will be if you're playing piano).

These are all fairly minor complaints btw. I'll be happy if any of them are solved, but I'm already 100% on board with the CFX!


Yamaha P-85, P-105, CP50 || Kawai NV-10, MP11
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: bsntn99] #2644087
05/16/17 12:46 PM
05/16/17 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by bsntn99
You are entitled to your opinion as I am mine. I could care less about your lengthy insulting diatribe. Count yourself lucky you do not hear these issues. Believe me I wish I didn't.

That is why this is a forum....each to his own. But your comments about Garritan and their ''bad'' product were just to much.....
quote: I doubt Garritan gives a damn about the quality enough to fix it since they are raking in the cash on this.
Enjoy your Kawai CA-95

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: bsntn99] #2644094
05/16/17 01:23 PM
05/16/17 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by bsntn99
I'll have to spend some time looking into the AcousticSamples C7. Given the excellent job they did on the B5, this may be a better choice for a Yamaha library. They have at least some different closer mic'd positions that might be more usable, although I don't like mixing since it tends to introduce time alignment issues.


Good point. Mixing mics on sampled pianos like Garritan CFX can solve some problems (e.g. provide fuller sound and ambience) and create some problems (e.g. "sloppy" time alignment).

Originally Posted by bsntn99
Saw one vst that actually had an adjustable delay for each mic position which I thought was cool way to get around this problem. If recording, I can just separate the mic positions to different tracks and adjust the delay per track. I'll play around with resampling the CFX. Maybe I can get acceptable results. Would be nice if the CFX had a sample start adjustment or envelope control built in like I've seen on a few other vsts.


Sorting out time alignment with multiple recording mics and multiple playback cone speakers is "difficult."

Binaural recording played back on single-driver headphones seems like a simple way to deal with many recording & playback issues, including time alignment. Garritan CFX (full version) has a Neumann KU100 dummy head with mics in each ear to "replicate" a player's perspective; you need to listen with headphones.

https://www.garritan.com/blog/abbey-road-cfx-concert-grand-player-perspective/

The default classic full (m49/km184/4006/tlm50) using good open-backed headphones is most enjoyable for me despite the issues of mixing lots of mics. I think the most enjoyable setup will differ by person and by his or her audio equipment. YMMV...

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2644745
05/18/17 12:03 PM
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I was able to spend a couple of days in the studio playing around with the CFX to give some detailed insight. I don't see any issues with the general playability. The levels across the velocity layers and transitions are quite smooth and consistent. I'm a bit curious whether the 20 layers are actually sampled or some of these interpolated. I suspect the later, but in any event it works quite well. Also the scripting is done quite well to manage transitions between the different sample sets.

The one issue I have is with variation in the hammer attack noise across the keys. This is especially evident on E2, F#2, G#2, A2, D3, D#3, and B4, with D3/D#3 being the most obvious with a very hard mallet-like attack. Any reasonably experienced pianist with a good ear should be able to pick this up. I saw from comments that a couple of other people noted this. If you moderately tap C3 with the sustain pedal down a few times and do the same with D3, it's very obvious the difference. As you play arpeggiated sequences on and off these notes, or with repetitions, it's very distracting the change in note attack. Now this only applies to the full presets. As it stands this is ok for casual playing or sitting in the background in a mix, but is unacceptable for any detailed piano focused pieces. Acoustic pianos always have some slight note to note variation in sound, and this is desired in a library, but not to this degree.

Now the compact presets use a subset of notes that are stretched to cover the entire range, and does not have these issues as these samples seem to be avoided for the most part, however, the stretching does cause issues at the ends of the keyboard range, particularly the upper range where you go not get the natural undamped sustain. You also lose some of the natural note to note variation. Also note the timbre knob pitch shifts the samples depending on which way it is turned (this is in the manual) and can make the notes sound unnatural.

In looking at the sample libraries, there are only 87 notes per layer instead of 88. It seems note 50 which is D3 was left out of the sample set and D#3 stretched to cover this note. This explains why both of these have the same sharp hammer attack. I suspect the CFX was not properly set up for the recording session maybe due to time constraints as studio time is very expensive. D2 was probably dropped from the samples due to some unrecoverable issue related to this unless they just forgot to sample this note. There may also be some issues with editing the samples, but less likely. All of this would not be an issue if the attack sound was consistent across all the notes, but unfortunately it is not. Out of the dozen or so commercial libraries I have, only one other is worse, the Tru Keys Italian Grand which is unfortunate because it is a great sounding library otherwise.

A couple of possible fixes for Garritan is to edit the samples for the notes I mentioned. It would take me a couple of days to do this if I had access. An easier solution is to drop these notes and just stretch the note next to it. This would be much easier only require updating the scripts taking a couple of hours at most. A slightly smaller library would also be a benefit. I did a small simulation of these scenarios with superb results and vastly improved note to note consistency. I come from an engineering background with four decades of playing/recording experience and started out playing in a classical orchestra, so have a very sensitive ear. Judging from the comments it seems many people either are not bothered by this, do not have a sensitive ear, or good monitors/headphones to pick up on this.

If you already have the CFX and are not bothered, then great and disregard all of the above. If you are, the compact presets offer a possible solution. If you are thinking of buying this and not sure if this is an issue, buy the lite version and then upgrade later if you are satisfied.

On a side note I use the Sforzando soundfont player for a number of libraries I have and highly recommend. I was pleasantly surprised that when I installed the CFX, it set up presets in Sforzando automatically for me. You get a very similar interface but get the Sforzando built in reverb/eq. This is not much of a surprise since Sforzando came out of a collaboration between Garritan and Plogue, and CFX uses the Sforzando aria engine with a custom gui. Some other commercial piano libraries I have use the aria engine as well which is great sounding engine. If you want some insight into designing soundfonts/scripting for Sforzando I recommend playing around with the free Estate Grand LE or Salamander Piano. Ariaengine.com also has a number of free libraries to play with.

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: bsntn99] #2644753
05/18/17 12:45 PM
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Great insight bsntn99! Thanks for taking the time to post your thoughts here; it is a nice education.

CyberGene recently wanted to customize the pedaling in Garritan CFX. The lead engineer Jeff Hurchalla worked with him "under the hood."

http://forum.pianoworld.com/ubbthre...rove-garritan-cfx-repedaling-timing.html

Given your background and CyberGene's success with the Garritan developers, I wouldn't be surprised if Jeff would give you some special access (maybe with a simple NDA). Perhaps those tweaks could be pushed out to everyone as an update...

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2644771
05/18/17 01:25 PM
05/18/17 01:25 PM
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Yes, a suburb analysis, bsntn99! This is why I love the PW forums, there are always some who don't buy the marketing hype for a dollar (or $199) and do their own objective research. Very detailed and thought out. I still think the Garritan CFX must be pretty good, in light of the almost unanimous praise it gets, but I do not doubt the results of bsntn99's inquiry.

As I seem to be the only one around here who has the Estate Grand from Prod. Voices for Sforzando, I can offer some insight into it. I like it's tone, but feel it lacks some body. That's why I was asking in another thread if I could apply an EQ to it, as there is none in the interface by itself. The VSTi can be made much better, just by an EQ.

I actually had a few problems with it. The volume controls for the microphones, did not appear. Jason Chapman of PV was very willing to help, but we found no solution. Finally I managed to edit a stage setting in my PX-5S to assign the first three knobs to each of the microphones of the Estate Grand. That may not be possible on all instruments, maybe only a few ones.

Another thing that bothered me, was that by having Key release on, there was a strange distortion noise every now and then when I released the pedal. By turning the volume of Key Release down, or turning it off, there was no such noise. For $24 maybe the Estate Grand for Sforzando is still worth playing around with, and of course everyone can pick up the free/donationware LE version. If you donate $10 or more, it can be used as a payment towards the full version.

I actually picked up the Kontakt version of Studio Grand LE for $11, but I can't recommend that one, well maybe for a giveaway price like that. The dynamic range is very narrow, probably due to it being only about one gigabyte in size. The full Estate Grand is 3.6GB, and it's very responsive. The tone of Studio Grand LE is nice, but lacks body, and bass, pretty much like the Estate Grand.

Finally, a question for bsntn99. Which libraries for Sforzando do you have and recommend? I haven't been able to find many. Sampletekk has the Rain Piano, but I really don't like it.


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Casio PX-5S. Garritan CFX. Prod. Voices: Grand 2 Gold, Concert Grand Compact, Est. Grand, Studio Grand LE. NI Giant. Galaxy II Blüthner Baby Grand. AcousticSamples C7. AK Studio Grand. Sampletekk Black. Kontakt 5. Reaper.
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2644836
05/18/17 04:17 PM
05/18/17 04:17 PM
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+1, that was a really informative read, thanks for putting in the effort and time bsntn99.

I currently only have the compact install running, while I wait for an SSD upgrade. But now I might find myself listening for this hammer noise. I hope not, my goal is not to nitpick the details of the instrument, I just want something that is more detailed and richer than the hardware samples in my DP, and even the compact fits that bill beautifully.


Yamaha P-85, P-105, CP50 || Kawai NV-10, MP11
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2644910
05/18/17 08:01 PM
05/18/17 08:01 PM
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I've just shelled out for the Lite version of this in order to give it a test, and first impressions are a nice piano tone with a few sampling issues (which I guess has been the gist of this thread), but I have a couple of very basic questions:-

1. The default setting which mixes the sustain and non-sustain samples sounded quite horrific. I understand the desire to sample with both, but when you have quite a dry sound set up to play something like Bach or Mozart for the non-sustain samples, and hit the sustain pedal occasionally, suddenly it's like the piano was moved to a cathedral. Frankly, it sounds ridiculous in my opinion, and certainly nothing like any grand piano I've ever played on. My questions are: (a) am I the only one who thinks this?!!; and (b) is there any way of controlling the sample set other than selecting the presets which specifically include all or none of the sustain pedal samples? In other words, is there any way to select the other presets but apply them to only the no-sustain samples? And if not, are there any hidden changes in those other settings that I can't reproduce with a suitable adjustment of the dials, i.e. anything related to samples again?

2. The audience sound stage is not bad but could certainly be better; while the performer one just a bit too extreme on the L-R division for my taste. Am I right in thinking that the full version contains many more options for this, and if so, are any of those options generally more popular?


Broadwood, Yamaha U1; Kawai CA67; Pianoteq Std (D4, K2, Blüthner, Grotrian), Garritan CFX Full, Galaxy Vintage D, The Grandeur, Ravenscroft 275, Ivory II ACD, TrueKeys Italian, AS C7, Production Grand Compact, AK Studio Grand, AK Upright, Waves Grand Rhapsody; Sennheiser HD-600 and HD-650, O2 amp
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: karvala] #2644918
05/18/17 08:50 PM
05/18/17 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by karvala
2. The audience sound stage is not bad but could certainly be better; while the performer one just a bit too extreme on the L-R division for my taste. Am I right in thinking that the full version contains many more options for this, and if so, are any of those options generally more popular?


Garritan indicates that the stereo image buttons Audience-Performer will filp L & R channels:

https://usermanuals.garritan.com/CFXConcertGrand/Content/stereo_image.htm

To confirm, Frédéric L recently tested by subtracting an Audience sound wave from a Performer sound wave and ended up with no sound. That would confirm that the "stereo image" buttons simply swap L & R channels. I think he only tested the KU100 mics.

To reduce the "extreme" L & R division, you could reduce the Stereo Width dial (located above the gain sliders on the top right side of the screen). The full version allows one to add or exclusively use ambience mics, which the Garritan techs call "non-directional".

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: newer player] #2644927
05/18/17 09:14 PM
05/18/17 09:14 PM
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karvala Offline
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Originally Posted by newer player
Originally Posted by karvala
2. The audience sound stage is not bad but could certainly be better; while the performer one just a bit too extreme on the L-R division for my taste. Am I right in thinking that the full version contains many more options for this, and if so, are any of those options generally more popular?


Garritan indicates that the stereo image buttons Audience-Performer will filp L & R channels:

https://usermanuals.garritan.com/CFXConcertGrand/Content/stereo_image.htm

To confirm, Frédéric L recently tested by subtracting an Audience sound wave from a Performer sound wave and ended up with no sound. That would confirm that the "stereo image" buttons simply swap L & R channels. I think he only tested the KU100 mics.

To reduce the "extreme" L & R division, you could reduce the Stereo Width dial (located above the gain sliders on the top right side of the screen). The full version allows one to add or exclusively use ambience mics, which the Garritan techs call "non-directional".


Thanks, that's hugely useful; somehow I missed that dial entirely! The ambient mics in the full version sound quite promising.


Broadwood, Yamaha U1; Kawai CA67; Pianoteq Std (D4, K2, Blüthner, Grotrian), Garritan CFX Full, Galaxy Vintage D, The Grandeur, Ravenscroft 275, Ivory II ACD, TrueKeys Italian, AS C7, Production Grand Compact, AK Studio Grand, AK Upright, Waves Grand Rhapsody; Sennheiser HD-600 and HD-650, O2 amp
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2645125
05/19/17 10:31 AM
05/19/17 10:31 AM
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Thanks for the positive feedback on my analysis. I understand why people like this library so much. The mic setup, scripting etc. was well done. I mentioned the only issue I have and it is easily fixable. It sucks having overly sensitive hearing. I just had a very bad knee jerk reaction when I first touched the keys with this library. I've now calmed down after diving into a deep analysis of what I didn't like. The way to think about this is that CFX is simply a soundfont with scripting that takes advantage of the aria engine to switch to or mix in different sample groups. This is really true of all sample based instruments. If you know how this is done, they do not seem so mysterious or magical. The big but is you have to start with a good basic even soundset.

As far as Sforzando, I've only played with the few libraries I mentioned as an education. I generally make my own soundfonts for personal use. I may look into some of the others if I can find the time. Karvala, make sure you have the room reverb on the piano tab turned off as well as the reverb on the studio tab, and you are in the performer position. Also, try turning the repedaling off as this can add a tail to notes coming on and off the sustain pedal. Other than this, there is a certain amount of natural reverb in the samples that cannot be eliminated. You can move the different sample sets to a temp folder on the same drive if you want to play around to see if this makes a difference. You will get an error on loading, but the player will still work.

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: bsntn99] #2645450
05/20/17 01:31 PM
05/20/17 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by bsntn99
Well, CFX Lite is going the shelf. Just picked up the Waves Grand Rhapsody which was just released for $19 after taking their online survey which gives you a $10 coupon. This is how the CFX should have been recorded by Garritan with no extraneous hammer noise. The downside is it takes longer than CFX Lite to load with a 14 GB library. 8 different mic setups included, 3 allowed at one time, plus a better equalizer, no hokey presets. Doesn't seem to have half pedaling though, but I can live without this considering how good this sounds. Check it out if interested. Glad I didn't waste money on the full CFX version.


Can I ask what settings you're using in the Grand Rhapsody? I just picked it up cheaply as well, to see if it might overcome some of the limitations in the CFX, and I must say from my initial tests with various presets and playing around with it, it sounds absolutely dreadful. I actually checked and swapped my headphones, assuming they must have developed fault, it sounded that bad. Some visibly mistuned notes (e.g. A5 on default settings), an unfortunate echo even with reverb turned off, but most annoyingly of all, transitions between velocity layers that sound like they could have been sampled from completely instruments. At one moment you have a relatively muffled timbre, play just slightly harder and it's like someone's banging a tin drum. Put the two together, i.e. play with slightly different velocity on some notes than others, and it honestly sound like multiple pianos stitched together. Quite horrendous and certainly unusable. Surely I must be doing something wrong?!!


Broadwood, Yamaha U1; Kawai CA67; Pianoteq Std (D4, K2, Blüthner, Grotrian), Garritan CFX Full, Galaxy Vintage D, The Grandeur, Ravenscroft 275, Ivory II ACD, TrueKeys Italian, AS C7, Production Grand Compact, AK Studio Grand, AK Upright, Waves Grand Rhapsody; Sennheiser HD-600 and HD-650, O2 amp
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2645467
05/20/17 03:41 PM
05/20/17 03:41 PM
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Sweden
TheodorN Offline
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I got the Waves Grand Rhapsody a few weeks ago, but have hardly opened it. I had a little deeper play-around just now, and wasn't very impressed. I went through most of the presets, and turned most of the settings, velocity, compressor, formant, and volume, up and down.

The sound was muddy, in most of the presets. I got horrible distortions in a few of the presets and settings, if I reduced the sample size to 64. That may be due to my computer being old and tired, after all this sample is 15GB, though that's nothing compared to the Garritan CFX. Still, the specs are an i7 processor, albeit a few generations older than the latest ones, a grandfather, and 8GB RAM, so I wonder if the computer is to blame.

I found the dynamic range to be very narrow. No matter how hard I banged the keys, it just wouldn't go up there. If I turned the velocity knob back, the piano just became quieter overall. The Grand Rhapsody didn't seem to move smoothly from one dynamic level to the next. Is this what you mean by transitions between velocity layers?

I don't know if I'll be able to optimize the settings for this VSTi, though I might give it a few more tries, but after about three sessions of using it, this thing does not feel good under my fingers. A prerequisite for piano library to be considered of quality, is not only that it sounds and plays well. It should also sound and play well in the default settings, or at least, that it doesn't take a professional studio guy to get a sufficiently good sound and playing experience out of it.

Possibly it's the old story, you get what you pay for, though there can be problems with the €150 - €250 libraries as well. I even got the Waves Grand Rhapsody for €19, since I had a coupon, so I'm not upset that using it doesn't feel like sitting in the Abbey Road Studio, playing a huge Fazioli Grand.


My YouTube channel

Casio PX-5S. Garritan CFX. Prod. Voices: Grand 2 Gold, Concert Grand Compact, Est. Grand, Studio Grand LE. NI Giant. Galaxy II Blüthner Baby Grand. AcousticSamples C7. AK Studio Grand. Sampletekk Black. Kontakt 5. Reaper.
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2645514
05/20/17 08:32 PM
05/20/17 08:32 PM
Joined: Feb 2017
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Zilthy Offline
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I bought the CFX full, and this particular piece of software/vst has already ticked me off before I have even completed installing.

1) Too many prompts for which drive to install too. I should be able to choose a drive, and let it roll. Having to manually choose 10+ times is annoying.

2) Popup registration URL is wrong. I paid for this, I should not have to chase down crap after.

3) I will admit, this is partly me getting old, but looking up serial number. It came on a USB stick. I should not have to type a 25 digit serial number in. I should not have to hunt down the right web page (See #2). I should not have to take a photo of the serial because of a poor font to blow it up so I can even read it to type it in. There are better ways to do this. Typing in long serial numbers is *so* 20 years ago.

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2645547
05/20/17 11:00 PM
05/20/17 11:00 PM
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Zilthy Offline
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This now goes down in my list of the most worthless piece of crap software to buy and try and install, ever.

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2645628
05/21/17 04:47 AM
05/21/17 04:47 AM
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Sweden
TheodorN Offline
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May I ask, is it only because of the tedious install procedure? Did you manage to complete the installation? Shouldn't the CFX, as any software piano, be judged according to how it plays, not how it installs?

Since the CFX is huge in size, I can imagine it's a hassle to install it. I've found out with most of my libraries, which are all very small ones, it takes time to learn using them, and tweak them to my liking.

I may even have to reconsider what I said about the Waves Grand Rhapsody, because this guy gets very nice sounds out of it, by choosing the right microphones.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xybaNnpuOb8


My YouTube channel

Casio PX-5S. Garritan CFX. Prod. Voices: Grand 2 Gold, Concert Grand Compact, Est. Grand, Studio Grand LE. NI Giant. Galaxy II Blüthner Baby Grand. AcousticSamples C7. AK Studio Grand. Sampletekk Black. Kontakt 5. Reaper.
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: TheodorN] #2645655
05/21/17 07:43 AM
05/21/17 07:43 AM
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karvala Offline
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Originally Posted by TheodorN

I may even have to reconsider what I said about the Waves Grand Rhapsody, because this guy gets very nice sounds out of it, by choosing the right microphones.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xybaNnpuOb8


I guess it depends what you want out of software piano. For me, I want it to, as realistically and unobtrusively as possible, sound like I'm playing a real piano, and preferable a nice real piano. I don't want it to sound like it's halfway across the room because that breaks the illusion that I'm playing it. I don't want all sorts of weird acoustic effects that are not present when playing a real piano, I don't want a massive change of timbre with a small change of velocity that I've never encountered on a real piano, etc. etc.. Even in that demo, listening through good headphones, the sound moves around spatially in a completely implausible way that is very distracting, and not at any point did it sound like someone playing an actual piano. I guess if people want a rather contemporary and slightly electronic sound that sounds like someone else is performing across the room, then it could quite well. Fundamentally, I suppose it's not a good fit for what I'm after.


Broadwood, Yamaha U1; Kawai CA67; Pianoteq Std (D4, K2, Blüthner, Grotrian), Garritan CFX Full, Galaxy Vintage D, The Grandeur, Ravenscroft 275, Ivory II ACD, TrueKeys Italian, AS C7, Production Grand Compact, AK Studio Grand, AK Upright, Waves Grand Rhapsody; Sennheiser HD-600 and HD-650, O2 amp
Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: karvala] #2645667
05/21/17 08:31 AM
05/21/17 08:31 AM
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Posts: 3,081
uk south
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dire tonic Offline
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Originally Posted by karvala
I guess if people want a rather contemporary and slightly electronic sound that sounds like someone else is performing across the room, then it could quite well.

Try muting (completely 'off'!) the ambient samples. On the piano tab, zero everything except release crossfade - set that to about 10 o'clock. That should put you in something resembling an acoustically damped room, sitting at the piano.

Re: Garritan CFX Lite $59.95 [Re: Fscotte] #2645680
05/21/17 09:30 AM
05/21/17 09:30 AM
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Sweden
TheodorN Offline
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Karvala, did you try all the available choices for microphones? This instrument is recorded with eight microphone pairs, though you can only use three at the same time. That means, if I'm recalling my probably and statistics theorems correctly, (8 x 7 x 6) / 3! = 56 possible combinations of microphones. Of course, you don't have to use all of them, you can use one or two, which gives you 8 + (8 x 7) / 2 = 36 more = 94 possible combinations of microphones!

Believe me, I haven't tried but a small number of them, so I'm going to reserve final judgments, till I try more of them. I still feel the Waves Grand Rhapsody is not responding to my playing as I would have it - agree with you there - but that may possibly be fixed by playing with the velocity curve, and the compressor. Whatever may come out of that, we can always try different microphone pairs, close, medium, room, to change the aspect and distance of the sound. That's why we usually have different microphone positions in piano samples.


My YouTube channel

Casio PX-5S. Garritan CFX. Prod. Voices: Grand 2 Gold, Concert Grand Compact, Est. Grand, Studio Grand LE. NI Giant. Galaxy II Blüthner Baby Grand. AcousticSamples C7. AK Studio Grand. Sampletekk Black. Kontakt 5. Reaper.
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