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Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: slobajudge] #2738748
05/22/18 08:05 PM
05/22/18 08:05 PM
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I've learned two important things over the last 24hours.

1. I don't have to be disappointed with every virtual piano purchase.
2. I need a new computer.

I purchased the VSL CFX standard version last night and even though I'm not at home on my MP11SE with good studio monitors (I'm at work with a yamaha P45 and cheap monitors) I still really like the sound. Unfortunately, my dated (mid 2012) MacBook air can't handle the load. I get some clipping depending on how many mics I'm running. So a new computer is on the horizon. I think I might upgrade to the full version also for the close 2 and mid 2 option. I just don't have the hard drive space on my little MacBook air to do it right now. Another reason for a new computer (when I can afford it).

I have a couple question for you pros. I'm not that experienced with virtual instruments. This is my third one and the first two I didn't really care for.

1. I've never used a USB license before. From what I understand if lose this or it breaks, that's the end of my library. What are my options if I lose it or it breaks. Can I just buy another one and reuse the activation code I received with my VSL CFX purchase? Can the same activation code be used on two different USB devices (to have a backup stored away)?

2. It might be a few months (or longer) before I can buy a new computer. Besides playing with he mics and increasing the preload in settings (I've bumped it up to 16384 samples, that's all my computer can handle), is there anything else I can do to minimize the clipping? One mic = no clipping, two mics = a little clipping, three or more mics = is doable but with regular clipping.

3. I've noticed that even though it might clip some when I play, if I record what I'm playing in garageband (yes, VSL CFX works in grageband, thumb yippie) when I save what I recorded to disk as an mp3 (from midi) it plays back as an mp3 with no clipping. I'm curious why that is. Thank you to whoever answers these questions. I really do appreciate it.

God Bless,
David


Last edited by David B; 05/22/18 08:12 PM.

Kawai MP-11SE
Mac mini 2018/Focusrite Scarlett 2i4/KRK Rokit 6 G3 Studio Monitors
Duane Shinn 52 Week Crash Course; Lessons 1-33 Completed
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Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: slobajudge] #2738754
05/22/18 08:23 PM
05/22/18 08:23 PM
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VSL's usb licenser policy is one of the reasons I don't buy their stuff.. It's pretty brutal. They do have some unique libraries I want, but so far I have not gone for them.

Last I read their policy is this:

If your USB dongle breaks within the 2 year warranty period, if it's been damaged externally you pay for a new dongle, and a transfer fee (20 euro each license, min 30 euros fee).
If your USB dongle is lost, or breaks outside warranty period, you can rebuy your libraries from VSL for 50% off the full price, and pay for a new dongle.

I've been told they recommend you buy a new dongle every 2 years, and transfer your licenses to it.

The more you buy from them the more painful an accident or lost dongle gets. Some people have bought their entire orchestra.. and lost it.


Roland FP-90 - Touchkeys - TEC BC - MIDI Expression
Kontakt - Arturia Piano V - Sonivox Eighty-Eight - Spitfire Symphony Orchestra

whitepianos.blogspot.com
Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: David B] #2738755
05/22/18 08:29 PM
05/22/18 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by David B
I've learned two important things over the last 24hours.

2. It might be a few months (or longer) before I can buy a new computer. Besides playing with he mics and increasing the preload in settings (I've bumped it up to 16384 samples, that's all my computer can handle), is there anything else I can do to minimize the clipping? One mic = no clipping, two mics = a little clipping, three or more mics = is doable but with regular clipping.


What audio interface are you using? It might be a better investment to upgrade that, hard to say though, I don't know what specs your Mac has. You should also make sure your Mac is running full power rather than any power saver modes when playing.


Roland FP-90 - Touchkeys - TEC BC - MIDI Expression
Kontakt - Arturia Piano V - Sonivox Eighty-Eight - Spitfire Symphony Orchestra

whitepianos.blogspot.com
Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: David B] #2738757
05/22/18 08:38 PM
05/22/18 08:38 PM
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Re: activation codes. An activation code can only be used once. You get one activation for a single key. It can be moved from one key to another. So don't ever delete that activation. Read the instructions carefully about how to install and move an activation.

Re: recording with no clipping. Usually (and I believe this applies to Garageband) exporting to mp3 takes as long as necessary for the CPU to compute the result, so you always get a good result. Live playing clips if your CPU cannot keep up in real time. You can solve some problems by increasing your buffer size. But then you trade off latency for better sound, and eventually too much latency is going to drive you nuts trying to perform. Unfortunately, Garageband no longer allows one to adjust the buffer size. You'll need a different sequencer if you want to adjust buffer size.

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Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: dbudde] #2738792
05/22/18 10:55 PM
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Originally Posted by puremusic
...
If your USB dongle breaks within the 2 year warranty period, if it's been damaged externally you pay for a new dongle, and a transfer fee (20 euro each license, min 30 euros fee).
If your USB dongle is lost, or breaks outside warranty period, you can rebuy your libraries from VSL for 50% off the full price, and pay for a new dongle.

I've been told they recommend you buy a new dongle every 2 years, and transfer your licenses to it.


That actually seems pretty reasonable to me. However, I didn't buy their (Vienna Key) dongle. I bought a Stienberg elicenser. I wonder if the two year warranty you speak of still applies. I'll have to email VSL and find out. Thanks for the help.

Originally Posted by puremusic

What audio interface are you using? It might be a better investment to upgrade that, hard to say though, I don't know what specs your Mac has. You should also make sure your Mac is running full power rather than any power saver modes when playing.


I'm using Grageband to host the Synchron Piano Player that runs the VSL CFX samples (I think I said that right. cool) My mac is a 2012 MacBook air, i7 2 GHz, 8 GB ram, and 251 GB SSD. It handles most of the music I play because I'm not an advanced player. I think my mac is optimized to allocate resources where it's needed, but I'm not 100 percent confident about that. I'll try to look into that more. Thanks for the help.

Originally Posted by dbudde
Re: activation codes. An activation code can only be used once. You get one activation for a single key. It can be moved from one key to another. So don't ever delete that activation. Read the instructions carefully about how to install and move an activation.


So there is no way to have a spare backup ready to go in case of damage? I don't like that. It goes against my obsessive nature. That's another question for VSL.

Quote
Re: recording with no clipping. Usually (and I believe this applies to Garageband) exporting to mp3 takes as long as necessary for the CPU to compute the result, so you always get a good result. Live playing clips if your CPU cannot keep up in real time. You can solve some problems by increasing your buffer size. But then you trade off latency for better sound, and eventually too much latency is going to drive you nuts trying to perform. Unfortunately, Garageband no longer allows one to adjust the buffer size. You'll need a different sequencer if you want to adjust buffer size.


Thank you. That make sense. Also, I was looking for a buffer feature in Garageband/Synchron piano plugin, but I could't find it. I know with the other two I have (pianoteq and truekeys) I can adjust the buffer size and that helps. I guess there is not much I can do with the VSL CFX except be judicious with my mixer selection and live with some clipping until I can upgrade my machine. On the VSL website, under system requirements for CFX it says, SSD and 8 GB of ram (16 GB is recommended.) Maybe the newer machines with 8GB of ram can handle it and my machine is just too old. I guess I better start saving. Thanks for the help.

God Bless,
David

Last edited by David B; 05/22/18 11:01 PM.

Kawai MP-11SE
Mac mini 2018/Focusrite Scarlett 2i4/KRK Rokit 6 G3 Studio Monitors
Duane Shinn 52 Week Crash Course; Lessons 1-33 Completed
Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: David B] #2738799
05/22/18 11:55 PM
05/22/18 11:55 PM
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Originally Posted by David B
My mac is a 2012 MacBook air, i7 2 GHz, 8 GB ram, and 251 GB SSD. It handles most of the music I play because I'm not an advanced player. . . Maybe the newer machines with 8GB of ram can handle it and my machine is just too old. I guess I better start saving.


Your system is not so old. 8GB with the good SSDs supplied by Apple should be fine. I would not start thinking about a new laptop just yet. Save the cash for other stuff if possible.

As a few have noted, look to reduce sample size & increase buffer size a bit. Try the free tweaks first.

An inexpensive-used interface might help. Your MacBook Pro also has a Thunderbolt 1 port so that provides you a few speedy interface options (not quite sure if that will work with TB2 interfaces. There are essentially zero TB3 interfaces available so that is not an issue).

If none of that works, you can get a cheap off-lease Dell or HP desktop for a few hundred dollars from eBay for your VIs and keep your Macbook Air humming along. A few guys here have recommendations for cheap desktops that work well for music https://www.gearslutz.com/board/music-computers/

FYI - I have some experience here. My 2007 MacBook Pro was just barely too old for Garritan CFX and PianoTeq; it had 4GB ram and a SSD that was much slower than yours is. It worked but required very high buffers. I still use that 2007 laptop a lot for "productivity and fun" because the keyboard is fantastic and it the laptop runs fine.

Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: newer player] #2738813
05/23/18 01:12 AM
05/23/18 01:12 AM
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Originally Posted by newer player


Your system is not so old. 8GB with the good SSDs supplied by Apple should be fine. I would not start thinking about a new laptop just yet. Save the cash for other stuff if possible.

As a few have noted, look to reduce sample size & increase buffer size a bit. Try the free tweaks first.


Good news. This discussion encouraged me to run VSL CFX in MainStage (which has buffer adjustability) 128 eliminates all clipping, but there is some perceivable latency, (although I believe it's negligible for me), 64 has very little clipping (depending on what I'm playing and how many mics I'm running) and when I record in MainStage (Aiff or Wave, etc) MainStage doesn't record the clipping. That's cool.

However, I noticed in MainStage and in Grageband, my fan is constantly running on high. I'm not sure how long this little laptop can keep this up, but for now, I'm all set. Thanks everybody for the help.

God Bless,
David

Last edited by David B; 05/23/18 01:14 AM.

Kawai MP-11SE
Mac mini 2018/Focusrite Scarlett 2i4/KRK Rokit 6 G3 Studio Monitors
Duane Shinn 52 Week Crash Course; Lessons 1-33 Completed
Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: David B] #2738862
05/23/18 07:56 AM
05/23/18 07:56 AM
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Originally Posted by David B
Good news. This discussion encouraged me to run VSL CFX in MainStage (which has buffer adjustability) 128 eliminates all clipping, but there is some perceivable latency, (although I believe it's negligible for me), 64 has very little clipping (depending on what I'm playing and how many mics I'm running)


Good. A lot of people here play their VIs with a buffer of 128. There is a natural latency with a piano and a larger room so you are hearing some of that.

You can try reducing the sample rate whilst at a buffer of 128 if you want to lower latency further.

Originally Posted by David B
However, I noticed in MainStage and in Grageband, my fan is constantly running on high. I'm not sure how long this little laptop can keep this up, but for now, I'm all set.


You can raise the back of the laptop off your desk with a highligher, for example, and the laptop will run a bit cooler. Alternatively, you could buy a small fanned cooling pad and put that under the laptop.

If that does not work those c.2012 Apple laptops probably can benefit from a better application of thermal grease between the CPU and heatsink. That is something a local IT shop can probably do in an hour. The problem is the grease ages & the factories applied way too much. This made my MacBook Pros (2007 & 2011) run very quietly and much cooler - gave them a new lease on life.

https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/MacBook+Air+13-Inch+Mid+2012+Heat+Sink+Replacement/10953

Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: David B] #2738918
05/23/18 10:49 AM
05/23/18 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by David B
... my fan is constantly running on high. I'm not sure how long this little laptop can keep this up, but for now, I'm all set. Thanks everybody for the help.

I had a similar problem a couple of years ago. I did a youtube search for my laptop's model number and found a detailed disassembly video. I'll admit I was nervous that something might go wrong but it was less difficult than expected and took less than an hour. After applying a new blob of thermal paste to the cpu and - more importantly - cleaning away what was almost a carpet of accumulated dust between the fan and the outlet grill, the machine was as silent as new again.
Then, only a couple of months ago, the fan was screaming away yet again so I just blew hard a few times into the fan outlet, choked on the ensuing dust cloud and - again - it's silent. Worth a try if you haven't already.

Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: slobajudge] #2738924
05/23/18 11:34 AM
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Nothing wrong with cleaning laptop fans and reattaching with new thermal paste for sure (other than the small risk of things going wrong), but I would add that this instrument will tax the CPU and all CPUs will intentionally increase their fan speed to handle it. In some laptops that is always going to be audible.


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: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: slobajudge] #2738931
05/23/18 12:34 PM
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Wow. Thanks guys. I didn't even know about laptop cooling fans. I just purchased this one.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0713PHFRW/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I should get it Friday. Hopefully it will work and I won't have to take apart my laptop for the other mods.

I can't wait to go home this week and try this new piano on my home setup. MP11SE and better studio monitors.

God Bless,
David


Kawai MP-11SE
Mac mini 2018/Focusrite Scarlett 2i4/KRK Rokit 6 G3 Studio Monitors
Duane Shinn 52 Week Crash Course; Lessons 1-33 Completed
Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: karvala] #2738937
05/23/18 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by dire tonic
After applying a new blob of thermal paste to the cpu and - more importantly - cleaning away what was almost a carpet of accumulated dust between the fan and the outlet grill, the machine was as silent as new again.
Then, only a couple of months ago, the fan was screaming away yet again so I just blew hard a few times into the fan outlet, choked on the ensuing dust cloud and - again - it's silent. Worth a try if you haven't already.


Good point dire.

David - as first step, you might just quickly clean the fans and see how much that helps. Takes 10 minutes. There is a good chance this is more than enough.

Buy: a few q-tips, a p5 bit, a $5 can of compressed air.

Follow iFixit guide. Watch a few youtube videos. Some things to keep in mind:

- Unplug the laptop.
- Remove the 10 bottom screws.
- Carefully remove the case bottom.
- Don't touch anything inside except the fan blades. You can short out the machine & the battery is dangerous.
- Blow the dust out of the laptop bottom (don't let the fans spin with the compressed air because they go too fast).
- Then use a q-tip to remove the dust from each of the fan blades. Blow out the dust.
- Then try to blow the dust out of the radiator; the dust might be easier to blow if you have the screen opened (don't touch the radiator fins as they are super delicate).
- Replace bottom cover and carefully replace screws.

Originally Posted by karvala
Nothing wrong with cleaning laptop fans and reattaching with new thermal paste for sure (other than the small risk of things going wrong), but I would add that this instrument will tax the CPU and all CPUs will intentionally increase their fan speed to handle it. In some laptops that is always going to be audible.


Right on point. These MacBook Airs have limited processing power and weak cooling systems. But there is a good chance the laptop runs more efficiently with a quick cleaning and/or repaste. That might result in a reduction of fan noise, faster CPU clocks, or both.

Last edited by newer player; 05/23/18 01:03 PM.
Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: slobajudge] #2739371
05/25/18 09:41 AM
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Question for anybody who has recently ordered an eLicencer / Vienna Key from VSL along with your VSL CFX...
What size Vienna Key did you receive?

[Linked Image]

There seem to be at least two sizes available.
I believe the older ones were larger, and newer redesigned ones are now smaller, but many retailers are still selling the old larger ones until their stocks are depleted. Assume they're the same capacity and performance otherwise.
I was wondering which size type VSL are supplying for their Vienna Key at the moment?

Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: slobajudge] #2739373
05/25/18 09:59 AM
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I have 5 keys purchased over the last 12 years. Three are long and two (most recent purchases) are the short version. I have only ever bought the Steinberg version. The shorter version seems more durable. On one of my long keys the plastic molding fell apart.

Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: dbudde] #2739418
05/25/18 12:42 PM
05/25/18 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by dbudde
I have 5 keys purchased over the last 12 years. Three are long and two (most recent purchases) are the short version. I have only ever bought the Steinberg version. The shorter version seems more durable. On one of my long keys the plastic molding fell apart.

Your key breaking made me think about the consequences of a key breaking/not working or being lost/stolen (I have the short version, by the way).

On the VSL site, buried in the General Hardware Discussion I found this explanation from Paul.
I am amazed there is no mention anywhere on the site about this, not even on the Vienna Key page.

So, caveat emptor:

Generally, the most valuable part of our products is the license which is stored on the ViennaKey or other eLicenser USB Key. With our copy protection partner eLicenser (owned by Steinberg / Yamaha), we don't have access to the licenses on the keys of our users, so we're not able to restore and/or transfer any lost or stolen license to a new key. Also, it's technically not possible to disable the licenses or the key via remote. This means that whoever steals or finds a key can use the contained license without any restrictions, if he also has access to the samples, and software, e.g., from a friend.

Users who lost the key (or whose key has been stolen) will have to purchase a new license, and of course a new key. What we can offer uninsured users to meet them halfway in this situation is a replacement license at the reduced price of 50% of the full price of the licensed product(s).
Every user is responsible for his keys and licenses himself, we're not obliged to replace any lost or stolen keys at all, like e.g. lost or stolen jewelry wouldn't be replaced unless it's insured. That's why we recommend to insure all products you licensed.

In case a ViennaKey is damaged, users have to send it to our office in Vienna (American users: to the office of our distributor ILIO based in California) to enable us to take a look at the kind of the damage.
If the damage on the ViennaKey shows signs of external force, he will of course have to pay for the new ViennaKey, and a handling fee for the new licenses (EUR 20 per contained license, minimum fee EUR 30). If a ViennaKey is registered to a user account, it's a lot easier for us to find out which licenses were stored on the Key.
If the ViennaKey breaks within the warranty period (two years) without extraneous cause, the user gets a new ViennaKey and the new license free of charge if he can verify the warranty period by sending us the invoice of the purchase of the ViennaKey or other eLicenser USB Key. That's why we recommend to purchase a new key every two years and to keep the invoice at a safe place.

The quickest and easiest temporary solution in a case like this is to buy a new ViennaKey or other eLicenser USB Key. After registration of the new key, we can send you a demo license which enables you to bridge at least some time (48 hours) until the order of the replacement license is processed, which usually takes 1-3 business days once we’ve received the broken key. Of course it's not a bad idea to have a spare key in your studio, to ensure that you have no downtime at all in the event of a lost or broken key.


Yamaha C3M - Kawai Novus - VSL CFX - Garritan CFX - Pianoteq Pro - American Concert D - Ravenscroft 275
PC -> Sonarworks Reference 4 -> RME Babyface Pro -> Schiit Yggdrasil + Jotunheim -> Sennheiser HD650 & HD800
Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: slobajudge] #2739444
05/25/18 02:34 PM
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Fortunately the key that broke still worked. Steinberg replaced the key and I was able to get all of my licenses transferred to the new key.

Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: propianist] #2739476
05/25/18 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by propianist

I was wondering which size type VSL are supplying for their Vienna Key at the moment?


The short one, in my case at least.


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: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: slobajudge] #2739547
05/25/18 10:08 PM
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I arrived home earlier today and hooked my VSL CFX to my MP11SE and good studio monitors.

WOW!!! What a difference. There is so much more dynamic range compared to using my Yamaha P45 as the midi controller all week. With the P45 I had to increase the Midi Sensitivity up to 20 in the Synchron Piano Player just to get some volume/dynamic expression out of it, but it still felt kind of flat. The CFX did not sound like the youtube walkthrough video.

However, at home on the MP11SE, no midi sensitivity adjustment was needed and there is all kinds of dynamic range just like on the youtube video. I'm real happy with it. I don't know why there is such a difference in the dynamic range depending on what digital piano I use.

I think I will have to bite the bullet and upgrade to the full version while it is still on sale even though I can't fit it onto my hard drive. I think I can fit one more mic onto my hard drive (each mic is around 25-30 GB). I know you can install individual mics, so I might be able to fit Close 2 before my hard drive is almost full. This VSL CFX is the closest thing I have ever felt to playing a real piano (in my limited experience).

Also, the cooling pad I bought from Amazon works great. My computer fan doesn't even turn on now (I can't hear it running if it is on). When I don't use the cooling pad my fan runs on high. What a difference this makes. I don't feel like I'm going to burn up my little computer now.

Concerning the Vienna key/Steinberg, I purchased a new Steinberg eLiscense from Amazon and I received the small one.

God Bless,
David

Last edited by David B; 05/25/18 10:14 PM.

Kawai MP-11SE
Mac mini 2018/Focusrite Scarlett 2i4/KRK Rokit 6 G3 Studio Monitors
Duane Shinn 52 Week Crash Course; Lessons 1-33 Completed
Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: slobajudge] #2739651
05/26/18 12:50 PM
05/26/18 12:50 PM
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 336
England
P
propianist Offline
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propianist  Offline
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P

Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 336
England
RE: Vienna Key
Thanks for the replies, hopefully the shorter one is what's shipping from VSL these days then. That's what I want obviously.
I was just about to order CFX full version from VSL's website, but stopped because their Vienna Key was €24 Euro plus they wanted €17 Euro for shipping to UK - that's crazy €41 Euro extra!!!
Shopped around and got Vienna Key for £17.51 GBP inc shipping from Time + Space UK with a nice unexpected £5 discount code they were offering me today...(maybe Bank Holiday weekend sale?)
That's the "official" boxed VSL Vienna Key rather than a Steinberg branded eLicenser (which is £20 elsewhere), at the cheapest price I could find, but hopefully it will be one of the newer short, compact ones, but whatever the case I'm not wasting €41 on it.

Re: New incoming Yamaha CFX vst from VSL [Re: Erard] #2739764
05/27/18 01:39 AM
05/27/18 01:39 AM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 63
A
angmyu Offline
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angmyu  Offline
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A

Joined: May 2018
Posts: 63
Originally Posted by Erard
[quote=mcoll]
Here you go:
High
High-Sur

And another mix with Close1 (0dB), Main (-16dB, 21ms) and High (-6dB, 16ms)
Composite2

Please keep in mind that these samples are not normalized.


I listened to your demos very well! I have 2 questions!

1) What is the name of demo song?

2) I own the standard version of VSL CFX, is full version worth it?

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