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#2654877 - 06/19/17 03:50 PM Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic  
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Hi all,

I have a request. Could someone send me a .wav file of a DP that uses sampled grand data sets that includes a 10-15 second held C1 (lowest C on piano) with no use of damper pedal, followed by 10 seconds of silence followed by another 10-15 second held C1, this time with the damper pedal held down before the note was played. Here's why.

On my acoustic, when I play C1 with the damper pedal pressed, I can see that every note on the piano vibrates, not just the sympathetic resonances one would expect. This effect doesn't show up on a Pianoteq model I tried. I am interested to see if this effect is modelled into actual recorded sample sets.

Here are graphs of my acoustic C1-no sustain, followed by C1-with sustain, followed by Pianoteq C1- no sustain, followed by Pianoteq C1-with sustain. As you can see in the acoustic C1-with sustain every note shows energy. This can be affirmed by counting the number of spikes between the second and fourth tall spikes (around 63Hz and 125Hz) They represent the second and fourth partial of C1 which correspond to C2 and C3 on the piano. If you count the second partial as 1, you will count 13 spikes when you stop at the fourth partial. Those are the 13 notes on the piano from C2 to C3. While the amplitudes of the notes is low, it has an overall effect on the total sound.

Thanks.

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Last edited by prout; 06/19/17 05:21 PM. Reason: added info for clarity, I hope.
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#2654897 - 06/19/17 05:00 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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What do you mean by a .wav file of a sampled grand? When recording an acoustic piano, grand or upright, people need microphones, or something like a Zoom H4. The companies sampling grand pianos to release as software pianos, use high quality microphones, usually in pairs to get a stereo effect. The average pianist may not have such equipment, and a Zoom H4 is often the choice, so it may be hard to record an acoustic grand piano and get a sound like the commercial software piano manufacturers get. Some members here might be able to achieve that sound, though.

Last edited by TheodorN; 06/19/17 05:01 PM.

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#2654906 - 06/19/17 05:15 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: TheodorN]  
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Originally Posted by TheodorN
What do you mean by a .wav file of a sampled grand? When recording an acoustic piano, grand or upright, people need microphones, or something like a Zoom H4. The companies sampling grand pianos to release as software pianos, use high quality microphones, usually in pairs to get a stereo effect. The average pianist may not have such equipment, and a Zoom H4 is often the choice, so it may be hard to record an acoustic grand piano and get a sound like the commercial software piano manufacturers get. Some members here might be able to achieve that sound, though.


edit:Thanks for catching my confusing request. I meant to say to record a DP that uses actual acoustic grand samples rather than modelled data.

By .wav file I just mean to record your DP using the Line Out or Headphone jacks on any PC computer or H2N or whatever. I just don't want a lossy file like .mp3.

As you will notice, my grand (the acoustic in my post above) obviously had to be recorded using a mic. I used a mono reference omnidirectional mic through a Roland Quad-4 into a PC running Audacity from which I exported a .wav file to my FFT analysis software which produced the graph I posted. (I normally record using two cardioid vacuum tube mics and get a sound that rivals precisely what I hear when sitting at the piano bench. You can check my recordings on the Pianist Corner Member Recordings area.)

Someone else sent me a .wav file of his Pianteq modelled sound.

If someone here has a DP that uses a actual sampled data set, and looking at your byline, I guess you do, all you have to do is record your DP and send me the file.

Hope that explains it.

Thanks.

edit: I actually run a Yamaha KX-8 to my iPad and use iGrand with the S&S D sample set when my own piano is in use by others or I am on the road, but it doesn't represent the state of the art. Still nice to have though. I also own a CLP-300 for baroque pitch practice at 415Hz and 392Hz.

Last edited by prout; 06/19/17 05:23 PM.
#2654916 - 06/19/17 06:01 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Sampled pianos do not capture sympathetic resonances.
When the damper pedal is pressed they simulate the effect by mixing harmonically related samples.
So the answer to your question is: no.

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#2654946 - 06/19/17 08:08 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: MacMacMac]  
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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
Sampled pianos do not capture sympathetic resonances.
When the damper is off they simulate the effect by mixing harmonically related samples.
So the answer to your question is: no.


OK. So you are saying that an FFT analysis of a DP using a sampled acoustic piano will look the same whether or not the damper pedal was pressed when the DP player struck the note. This is not the case for a modelled piano as can be seen in the example above. While very, very weak, there is noise added to the signal in the modelled DP sound when the damper is pressed. There is no major excitation of the other strings as is clearly seen in the acoustic grand.

Thanks, but I would still like to see an example I can analyze. Given the amount of dis-information available on the 'net and here at PW, I prefer to make my own analysis and show reproducible results. This not a criticism of your response - I appreciate your candour, but as a scientist, I am skeptical until proven wrong or right.

#2654951 - 06/19/17 08:24 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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FWIW, have you had your wife sing while you hold down the damper pedal (on your acoustic) and don't play any notes? You will hear a BUNCH of strings vibrate, but the most distinct will be the fundamental pitch she was singing. It's pretty cool. smile

And I believe that digital pianos attempt to emulate this - this is what I understand sympathetic resonance to mean when described in DP manufacturers' descriptions. But I can also understand how this might be difficult to sample in such as way as to be able to modify it. So when I see DPs that have this feature that can be adjusted, I understand it to mean it's a simulation and not a part of the original sample.

Last edited by Morodiene; 06/19/17 08:26 PM.

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#2654982 - 06/19/17 10:10 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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This is definitely NOT what I'm saying ...
Originally Posted by prout
So you are saying that an FFT analysis of a DP using a sampled acoustic piano will look the same whether or not the damper pedal was pressed when the DP player struck the note.

However, I did say:
-- "When the damper is off they simulate the effect by mixing harmonically related samples."

That's not what I meant. I've corrected that post to say:
-- "When the damper pedal is pressed they simulate the effect by mixing harmonically related samples."

Perhaps that error caused a misunderstanding?

#2654986 - 06/19/17 10:25 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: MacMacMac]  
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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
This is definitely NOT what I'm saying ...
Originally Posted by prout
So you are saying that an FFT analysis of a DP using a sampled acoustic piano will look the same whether or not the damper pedal was pressed when the DP player struck the note.

However, I did say:
-- "When the damper is off they simulate the effect by mixing harmonically related samples."

That's not what I meant. I've corrected that post to say:
-- "When the damper pedal is pressed they simulate the effect by mixing harmonically related samples."

Perhaps that error caused a misunderstanding?


I did not misunderstand you. If you look at the 3rd and 4th graphs I posted above, which represent a Pianoteq C1 struck with the remaining strings damped and a Pianoteq C1 with all strings undamped, you will see essentially no difference except for a bit of added low level noise. This is very clear. Yes, the model may have added, hopefully, inharmonicically related samples, since no piano string produces harmonics, but that is another discussion - I get your point.

All I am asking is for someone to send me three samples from a DP that uses a data set from an actual piano to create its output - 10 seconds of background line out noise, 10 seconds of damped strings with C1 struck, and 10 seconds of undamped strings with C1 struck. I know for a fact, having played some state of the art DPs, that one can hold down, silently, C1, strike any related partially related note - C4, G4, and C5, for example, and C1 will ring with sympathetic resonance at those pitches, so there is some effect added. I just want to determine precisely what it is.

#2654989 - 06/19/17 10:44 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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I'm puzzled at what it is you're trying to do. But maybe you can clarify. This must surely be a typo?
Originally Posted by prout
Yes, the model may have added, hopefully, inharmonicically related samples,since no piano string produces harmonics ...

#2655001 - 06/20/17 12:39 AM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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PMFJI --

I was the source of the Pianoteq file. I was surprised that they didn't do a better job of modelling the "sonic wash" that comes off a few hundred undamped strings.

Here's the thing:

As Prout has shown, the sound signature of an acoustic piano -- with one note struck -- is substantially different, with "pedal up" vs "pedal down".

I would expect, that when someone _samples_ an acoustic piano, to develop a _sample-based_ software piano, they would sample each note two ways:

a) with the pedal up (dampers down), and

b) with the pedal down (dampers up).

That way, their "software piano" would have the same tonal difference as the acoustic it was based on. If the pedal were up when a MIDI signal came in, the "pedal up" sample would play; if the pedal were down, the "pedal down" sample would play.

[I don't know how they'd handle transitions from "pedal down" to "pedal up", when notes were sounding -- maybe that's where serious audio engineering skills are useful.]


So, if someone with a _sample-based_ software piano would be so kind as to turn off the reverb, and play it as Prout requested, and get a WAV file to him, both of us would appreciate it.

I have the MIDI file I generated, playing Pianoteq. If anyone wants it, for rendering, I'll send off a copy.

Thanks --


. Charles
---------------------------
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#2655002 - 06/20/17 12:58 AM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: MacMacMac]  
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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
Sampled pianos do not capture sympathetic resonances.
When the damper pedal is pressed they simulate the effect by mixing harmonically related samples.
So the answer to your question is: no.

That's depends : EWQL and VSL use damper pedal pressed recorded sounds.

The result is more accurate, but when you release the damper pedal, the virtual piano doesn't switch back to a normal sound when continuating to play already played notes. I suppose it would be hard to have a good enough switch.


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#2655051 - 06/20/17 08:09 AM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: Charles Cohen]  
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Originally Posted by Charles Cohen
PMFJI --

I was the source of the Pianoteq file. I was surprised that they didn't do a better job of modelling the "sonic wash" that comes off a few hundred undamped strings.



Looks like the sonic wash on the Pianoteq is simulated, but at much lower amplitude compared to the extra peaks on the acoustic. Also, the PT "sonic wash" appears to arbitrarily jut up from the original contour, unlike the acoustic. Would say they've got work to do on their algorithms.

Would be interesting to compare the V-piano or RD2000/LX17 "sonic wash" (like the jargon btw) with PT and acoustic grand's.

Last edited by Doug M.; 06/20/17 08:11 AM.

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#2655056 - 06/20/17 08:20 AM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: MacMacMac]  
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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
I'm puzzled at what it is you're trying to do. But maybe you can clarify. This must surely be a typo?
Originally Posted by prout
Yes, the model may have added, hopefully, inharmonicically related samples,since no piano string produces harmonics ...


No typo. I am merely being pedantic. Bear with me a moment.

If you bow a violin string, it produces a series of harmonics, exactly related to the fundamental pitch (correctly called the first partial) by integer values, that is for example 100, 200, 300, 400, 500Hz...

If you pluck a violin string, it produces an inharmonic series of non-integer partials - 100, 201, 301.5, 404, 507Hz...

A struck piano string does the same thing as a plucked violin string. It produces inharmonics, and that is what makes a piano sound like a piano. It is this inharmonicity that requires that the tuner stretch sharp the treble and the stretch flat the bass in order for the octaves to be more or less in tune, since every octave on the piano is a little larger than the 2:1 ratio we were taught.

What I am trying to do is simple. Every one of the roughly 240+ strings on a acoustic piano vibrates a little when a low bass note is played AND the damper pedal is pressed. Does a DP do this as well?



Last edited by prout; 06/20/17 08:34 AM.
#2655059 - 06/20/17 08:27 AM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: Morodiene]  
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Originally Posted by Morodiene
FWIW, have you had your wife sing while you hold down the damper pedal (on your acoustic) and don't play any notes? You will hear a BUNCH of strings vibrate, but the most distinct will be the fundamental pitch she was singing. It's pretty cool. smile

And I believe that digital pianos attempt to emulate this - this is what I understand sympathetic resonance to mean when described in DP manufacturers' descriptions. But I can also understand how this might be difficult to sample in such as way as to be able to modify it. So when I see DPs that have this feature that can be adjusted, I understand it to mean it's a simulation and not a part of the original sample.


Absolutely. It is an effect we sometimes use when performing modern music where the sympathetic resonance of the piano is part of the sound of the piece. S. Barber uses this effect (though it is not noted in the score) in some of his art songs. It does help the audience to hear it if the lid of the piano is on full stick for that piece.

#2655073 - 06/20/17 09:24 AM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Your DP here?

#2655128 - 06/20/17 04:03 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Does my CN35 qualify? Kawai PHI uses a sampled attack and then loops, but also has modeled sympathetic resonances. I could turn the resonances down with Virtual Technician.

There are actually DP recordings linked to in the DPBSD thread, that should have all notes with and without sustain.


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#2655135 - 06/20/17 04:26 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Seems to me your ears will tell you the answer and a bit o' thought will tell you why.
No digital piano sounds like an acoustic, because as stated, all strings as well as other things resonate.
The samples are cleaned up, and only those resonances deemed sonically acceptable to the great buying public will remain, and even those will be processed in some form to suit the overall sound.
Some models can be adjusted to personal taste within that which is supplied.
You are getting white bread with bits in it.
I would suggest the same raison d'etre applies to modelled stuff irrespective of how it's put together.
Some of us like it that way.
Having said all this, some acoustics have fairly low resonances. MY old straight strung upright was one.


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#2655151 - 06/20/17 05:51 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Garritan CFX shows the number of "layers" being played at any given time, which I assume are the voices stitched together to produce one or more keys played. With damper off, any given key pressed and held varies between 1-3 voices. With damper pressed, the player also shows 1-3 voices for any given key, suggesting it's not mixing the regular samples from other keys to achieve a damper resonance effect. IIRC it's the same case if you silently hold down keys to trigger string resonance and then play a single note (only 1-3 layers are triggered).


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#2655193 - 06/20/17 09:26 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Example here

I happen to have a synth/DP which does both - sampling and modeling.

00:00 : sampled piano + modeled string resonance, C damper pedal up
00:09 : sampled piano + modeled string resonance, C damper pedal down
00:17 : striking chords, which "transfer energy" to the held C because of modeled string resonance

00:38 : sampled piano only, string samples
00:41 : sampled piano only, resonance samples
00:47 : striking chords, no "transfer of energy" to the held C because no modeled string resonance

For example, the Yamaha Montage uses only samples, so no "transfer of energy" possible to emulate that aspect of a real piano. And of course, DPs and modeled pianos can not currently emulate a real piano resonance, as it's way too complex. The modeled string resonance algorithm would need to use the gazillion of different combinations possible. In other words, a triad played on a real piano does not create the sum of the three resonating piano keys sampled individually. It creates an unique string resonance sound for this particular triad only, which is also different if played with or without damper pedal, etc. Also, depending of how a piano is tuned (partial ratio chosen for octaves, etc.) all these unique string resonance possibilities change. A few software pianos pretend to emulate this, but it's quite weak compared to the real thing.

#2655301 - Yesterday at 11:01 AM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Here are Bosendorff's C1 samples, the first with no sustain and the second with sustain. The samples were too short to really capture the low level effects of sustain, and you can see very little energy at the fundamental (first partial at about 32Hz) but I think (this may be subjectively biased) I see hints of other notes being present in the spaces between the 2nd and 3rd partials (C2 and G2) in the sustained C1.

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#2655393 - Yesterday at 05:10 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Originally Posted by prout
...very little energy at the fundamental (first partial at about 32Hz) but I think (this may be subjectively biased)...

That's because the note/key you hear is C2. Also, I don't like how certain aspects of the string resonance behaves on the synth/DP when I play certain classical pieces, so what I recorded is my current settings. If you are interested and when I have some time later, I can record again with much higher/louder resonance settings.

#2655397 - Yesterday at 05:19 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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I'm confused. What have we learned here?


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#2655399 - Yesterday at 05:23 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Probably that even the current best DPs and software pianos can not reproduce the resonance particularities of a real grand piano very accurately.

#2655404 - Yesterday at 05:34 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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About the missing fundamental, it is because the soundboard can't produce much sound at a very low frequency. Even if the string does vibrate at the fundamental frequency (and other partials).

The others frequencies doesn't surprise me. If you see the steady sound, after the attack, you will only consider few frequencies (fundamental, and its multiple). But if you consider the quick attack you will have to consider other frequencies which may excitate the corresponding strings. This should explain the enhanced spectrum.

(The spectrum of a product - steady piano sound + envelope - is the convolution of the spectrum of available signals (partials of the string + something like a noise. ).

Last edited by Frédéric L; Yesterday at 09:27 PM.

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#2655416 - Yesterday at 06:01 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: Frédéric L]  
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Originally Posted by Frédéric L
About the missing fundamental, it is because the soundboard can't produce much sound at a very low frequency. Even if the string does vibrate at the fundamental frequency (and other partials).

The others frequencies doesn't surprise me. If you see the steady sound, after the attack, you will only consider few frequencies (fundamental, and its multiple). But if you consider the quick attack you will have to consider other frequencies which may excitate the corresponding strings. This should explain the enhanced spectrum.

(The spectrum of a product - steady piano sound + envelope - is the convolution of the available signals (partials of the string + something like a noise. ).

As you can see in my OP, the fundamental of C1 is clearly present in all four pictures, though at an amplitude 20 to 25dB below the 2nd partial. You are correct regarding soundboard resonance. The same effect occurs in speakers. Frequencies below the resonant frequency of the driver (soundboard or speaker cone) are not reproduced well.

What we have learned so far is that the modelling of an acoustic piano, and I include the necessary manipulation of sampled sounds in this statement, has come a long way, but is not yet a high fidelity simulacrum of an acoustic piano. This is not to disparage DPs. Quite the contrary. I see no particular need for a DP to be limited to an acoustic piano sound. It is an instrument in its own right.

That being said, there is much concern and gnashing of teeth here in the DP forum over how realistic the sound of one's DP is compared to the acoustic piano.

#2655417 - Yesterday at 06:03 PM Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: Bosendorff]  
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Originally Posted by Bosendorff
Originally Posted by prout
...very little energy at the fundamental (first partial at about 32Hz) but I think (this may be subjectively biased)...

That's because the note/key you hear is C2. Also, I don't like how certain aspects of the string resonance behaves on the synth/DP when I play certain classical pieces, so what I recorded is my current settings. If you are interested and when I have some time later, I can record again with much higher/louder resonance settings.


Well, that explains it. I didn't listen to the sounds, just analyzed them.

#2655585 - 10 hours ago Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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Posts: 301
Falsch Offline
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Falsch  Offline
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I do have an MP7 (which now resides at my girlfriend's apartment), and an LX17, but I don't have any recording equipment. The best I can do, is put the piano's line-out into the laptop's line-in.

The LX17 has a settings called full scale resonance (FSR), and damper resonance (DR).

- FSR controls how loud the resonances of pressed keys are. for example, silently press and hold a C-chord an octave below middle C. Then hit the same chord starting on middle C, and you'll hear the lower chord resonate on the pressed keys. FSR controls how long and loud those resonances are.

- DR controls the 'sonic wash.' If you press a key with the pedal up, the sound is much thinner than when you press it with the pedal down. DR controls how far the 'wash' travels up and down the keyboard (how many keys it affects), and how loud it is.

I'll try and get a decent recording, but I doubt it.


Roland LX-17 PE | Kawai MP7 + Pianoteq (Ruckers II Harpsichord, Kremsegg I & II historical collections) + Focal Alpha 80 speakers
#2655587 - 10 hours ago Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: prout]  
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prout Offline
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prout  Offline
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Southwestern Ontario
I am happy to analyze any files. It is interesting to see the different approaches to sampling and modelling.

#2655598 - 9 hours ago Re: Sampled vs Modelled vs Acoustic [Re: Falsch]  
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Cinjero Offline
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Cinjero  Offline
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Posts: 72
Originally Posted by Falsch
I do have an MP7 (which now resides at my girlfriend's apartment), and an LX17, but I don't have any recording equipment. The best I can do, is put the piano's line-out into the laptop's line-in.

The LX17 has a settings called full scale resonance (FSR), and damper resonance (DR).

- FSR controls how loud the resonances of pressed keys are. for example, silently press and hold a C-chord an octave below middle C. Then hit the same chord starting on middle C, and you'll hear the lower chord resonate on the pressed keys. FSR controls how long and loud those resonances are.

- DR controls the 'sonic wash.' If you press a key with the pedal up, the sound is much thinner than when you press it with the pedal down. DR controls how far the 'wash' travels up and down the keyboard (how many keys it affects), and how loud it is.

I'll try and get a decent recording, but I doubt it.


Recording wise, as with the HP605, there's a USB port you can use and then "record" to that, I think as a WAV, but that's all in the settings. You just use the "start/stop" button for the recording.


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