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Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759025
08/16/18 07:03 PM
08/16/18 07:03 PM
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Thank you Max Forte and karvala, great reviews. Yes I forgot to mention that I had similar bugs. Choosing a preset loads all mics at once even though only one or a few of them are active in the preset. I wonder why he decided to do it that way. Selecting Authentic Pedal also leads to a very strange sound for me, have to turn it off. Selecting a reverb from the main page leads to the same problems that karvala describes - all settings are set to zero, all microphone sliders are pulled all the way down, and when I try to pull them up, I can only hear sound on one side of the headphones. Have to restart Kontakt after that. My downloader also crashed multiple times. I think the software he uses is an open beta program? Gonna check out that note that you mentioned, reminds me of the Estate Grand which had similar issues (like chirping birds and loud thumping sounds if I remember correctly?). For what it's worth, the Embertone Walker also had at least one note that has a clearly audible snap or thud in a high velocity.

It really seems to be hard to deal with such a huge amount of samples. tens of thousands of sound files. You'd go crazy if you didn't do some form of batch processing, and perhaps you won't actually listen to every single sound for its entire duration. So I can understand that this happens, but it sucks of course, because once the recording is over, the sounds are there, end of story. Didn't someone tell me here that the Garritan CFX had to abandon one full note because of such an issue?

Glad that I am not the only one who has an issue with the upper part. It also seemed to me that this must have been because of the sampled instrument. I wonder if it is possible to raise the volume of the affected notes in Kontakt somehow. It seems to me that this sudden shift in timbre and volume is much bigger than in comparable situations in other piano VSTs.

Anyway, looks like the developer has some fixing to do. I feel sad that it went this way, because I really want him to succeed. he is visibly very passionate about this. and considering that he did all this by himself (that's correct, isn't it?), it is such an impressive accomplishment nevertheless.

I agree about the dynamic range of the VSL CFX. I ended up not using that on a regular basis, but whenever I return to it, the dynamic range is always the one thing that impresses me the most about it. Similar to the Vienna Imperial, that is a significant step up in liveliness, even better than the Garritan CFX in that respect. But I still prefer the latter because of its evenness and because the room ambience sounds more enjoyable than the Synchron Stage. A Synchron Steinway seems to be only a matter or time (it must certainly be called Synchron PianoS for a reason?), let's see what they bring to the table. I must admit that I despise their DRM/dongle policy so a part of me wishes that they don't release a good product (sorry) and also I tend to cut them a significantly lower amount of slack when it comes to flaws in their pianos. If you treat your customers like criminals then you better deliver a flawless top tier product. It is so interesting though, there's so many Steinways out there but not a single one that has reached the perfection of Garritan's CFX. This is why I would personally really like to see Garritan do another Steinway. They also have a respectable DRM policy.

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Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: karvala] #2759029
08/16/18 07:22 PM
08/16/18 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by karvala
The authentic pedal seems to be broken for me (anyone else tried it?), having a very strange effect on the sounds. Similarly, the Ambisonics options are less user-friendly than they could be, but more fundamentally also broken and creating very strange sounds. I hope both of those will be fixed in due course. The user interface also has some very strange behaviour; for example, selecting a convolution reverb setting on the Main page at the moment wipes out all of the other settings, so that all mics are turned off, all speakers are panned left, all volumes are minimised etc.. Some settings are present on multiple pages, but the settings are not always or reliably carried across from one page to another. Basically, it's clunky and buggy. It's usable, but it's a lot harder work than it needs to be.


Isn't that a problem that existed in Production Grand 2? I know Jason is a very passionate, sincere and capable man, but I wonder why he released without fixing all those errors.

Last edited by angmyu; 08/16/18 07:23 PM.
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Grazilerimba] #2759039
08/16/18 07:46 PM
08/16/18 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Grazilerimba
I agree about the dynamic range of the VSL CFX. I ended up not using that on a regular basis, but whenever I return to it, the dynamic range is always the one thing that impresses me the most about it. Similar to the Vienna Imperial, that is a significant step up in liveliness, even better than the Garritan CFX in that respect. But I still prefer the latter because of its evenness and because the room ambience sounds more enjoyable than the Synchron Stage. A Synchron Steinway seems to be only a matter or time (it must certainly be called Synchron PianoS for a reason?), let's see what they bring to the table. I must admit that I despise their DRM/dongle policy so a part of me wishes that they don't release a good product (sorry) and also I tend to cut them a significantly lower amount of slack when it comes to flaws in their pianos. If you treat your customers like criminals then you better deliver a flawless top tier product. It is so interesting though, there's so many Steinways out there but not a single one that has reached the perfection of Garritan's CFX. This is why I would personally really like to see Garritan do another Steinway. They also have a respectable DRM policy.


I'm undecided between VSL and Garritan for the CFX crown at the moment. I have great respect for the Garritan CFX for a number of reasons that I've gone into elsewhere, and it's undoubtedly the least flawed piano VSTi out there. The VSL CFX, though, has the edge on sound to me; it feels closer to playing and hearing an acoustic CFX, and that's quite compelling. The sound customisation options are also very good with those ten microphones and per-note editing. Ah, well, two great CFXs; what's not to like? I share your view on their DRM/dongle policy; I understand their argument but I don't think you should treat your customers as potential criminals. I don't understand why they don't allow an alternative internet licencing - which is supported by Steinberg in conjunction with the e-licencer dongle - and then there wouldn't be a problem. On the other hand, I have been impressed with their level of engagement in fixing problems with the instrument and releasing improvement; for example, I asked for a release sample control and sure enough they added one, asked me to beta test it and set parameters for it, and then put it in their public release. How many other developers would do that?

Would be nice to see a Steinway from either/both of those companies. I wouldn't be quite so optimistic about the Garritan one, though; their other piano libraries have been nothing special. I think the reason the CFX was so much better was that the Abbey Road team, who were very familiar with the space and instrument, were heavily involved in the sampling. You could say the same for the VSL CFX as well, but in their case that same team would also be doing their Steinway, so I'd be a bit more optimistic. There's a lesson for developers: don't go into an unfamiliar space with an unfamiliar instrument and expect to be able to sample it convincingly. Take advantage of existing recording studios with fine instruments and use the studio staff in the sampling.


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: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759042
08/16/18 08:07 PM
08/16/18 08:07 PM
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I'm ok with the imperfection of some notes: It's like playing a live instrument. But I agree that first of all, they should choose a piano which is in excellent condition. It's strange to say such obvious things but In sampled piano VSTi, a piano itself and its condition is the essential factor!

Don't forget that we are kind of beta testers now. Now is time for PV to gather all feedbacks and take the measures.

It was the last time I purchased a Kontakt piano that wasn't created for the free Kontakt Player. As I said them it's not only about Kontakt license but first of all ease of activation, adding a library and using the normal "Library view". Many of PW users have a Kontakt or the Komplete.
There is a feeling that developers not offering "Kontakt Player" functionality act like amateurs. I don't know how much it costs but some not very big companies as Wavesfactoty, Embertone etc offer their products for a "Kontakt Player" and NKS support.

+1 for a new Steinway from Garritan.
+1000 Hate VSL's USB dongle policy which is even worse than the iLOK! Just think that if you lose your E-Licenser or it is stolen they will not restore your license! Ilok in comparison is much kinder and allow you to contact the vendor to ask for a free license replacement if you are not subscribed to "Zero downtime"!

iLOK, please forgive me all my negative words I expressed in your address! smile


Casio PX-350
Komplete 10 Ult: UVI - Falcon; Vilabs - Ravenscroft; Pianoteq - 6 Std (Bluthner, Steinway D, K2); Galaxy - Vintage D, Vienna Grand; Production Voices - All Kontakt libs; Lounge Lizard EP-4; Neo-Soul Keys; AS - C7 Grand; Addictive Keys- All
Zoom UAC-2; Beyers DT-880 PRO; JBL - LSR305
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Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Max_Forte] #2759089
08/17/18 05:37 AM
08/17/18 05:37 AM
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toddy Online content
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Originally Posted by Max_Forte
iLOK, please forgive me all my negative words I expressed


Contrary to the mass fury found online for iLok, my experience with iLok (bought for EWQL instruments but now also running some other VSTs) has been good. It's one of the neatest licencing systems, allowing you to instantly license and enable any computer and keep a record of all your licenses online and in your computer.

Why do people hate it so much?


Roland HP 302 / Samson Graphite 49 / Akai EWI

Reaper / Native Instruments K9 ult / ESQL MOR2 Symph Orchestra & Choirs / Lucato & Parravicini , trumpets & saxes / Garritan CFX lite / Production Voices C7 & Steinway D compact

Focusrite Saffire 24 / W7, i7 4770, 16GB / MXL V67g / Yamaha HS7s / HD598
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759103
08/17/18 07:33 AM
08/17/18 07:33 AM
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Wow, so many different opinions and taste.
I think i'll pass this time after purchasing the Full Embertone and CinePiano..... both Steinway D's..
I like them both very much and as a result i deleted a few libraries (Hammersmith pro and Ravenscroft ) that i really didn't like.

Recently i am less and less pleased with the Garritan CFX ...... it still plays like a dream, but the sample fatigue has hit me hard with this one after a couple of years.
There's some sterile coldness in the sound i am hearing more and more lately....
It is even more appearent in the VSL CFX...... i don't own the latter but i heard quite a few demo's that surprised me a lot........ such a cold tone...

Yesterday i went to a shop who revised an eighties Yamaha C6 from my local theatre.
The craftsmen were all top Yamaha specialised and one of a kind and everything was new, from the strings, tuning pins, hammerheads and bridge pins etc.
The C6 was like new and extensive intonation made it sound and playable in the very best way possible.
Warm, clear and distinct.......
Nothing like the many mediocre C7's i personally know.....
Since i never layed my hands on the CFX myself, i asked the owner of this Yamaha working place and he told me he had tuned lots of them the last years during festivals.
Some were great, but others not so.....he chose his words carefully not to make any mistake...
To me the Synchron CFX sounds like i lesser piano, althaugh i only base this on the demo's....

In fact i think the CFX isn't my dream grand piano sound after all..... i am more and more falling in love again with Steinway.
If i didn't have the Embertone and CinePiano i surely would consider the PV concert grand.

For all the recent owners,...... enjoy your purchase to the max !

Last edited by pianistje; 08/17/18 07:35 AM.
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759216
08/17/18 02:34 PM
08/17/18 02:34 PM
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I agree with you Pianistje, I will also pass PV after I have Embertone. I dont like PV C7 and his Steinway reminds me too much of it. I have Garritan cfx and also VSL cfx and your observation is good, vsl cfx have very cold tone, and from the first day I don`t like his top notes. Now I even consider to sell it despite they are both very playable and good libraries. Sound wise no match for Embertone. Of course, let recent owners of PV Steinway to enjoy.

Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: slobajudge] #2759250
08/17/18 04:23 PM
08/17/18 04:23 PM
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Originally Posted by slobajudge
I agree with you Pianistje, I will also pass PV after I have Embertone. I dont like PV C7 and his Steinway reminds me too much of it. I have Garritan cfx and also VSL cfx and your observation is good, vsl cfx have very cold tone, and from the first day I don`t like his top notes. Now I even consider to sell it despite they are both very playable and good libraries. Sound wise no match for Embertone. Of course, let recent owners of PV Steinway to enjoy.

Ah thanks !!
Always good to keep some money in the pocket for the time being......and i value your opinion because i don’t know anyone who has so many piano libraries (with hands on experience) to compare..... grin

Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: pianistje] #2759254
08/17/18 04:49 PM
08/17/18 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by pianistje
Originally Posted by slobajudge
I agree with you Pianistje, I will also pass PV after I have Embertone. I dont like PV C7 and his Steinway reminds me too much of it. I have Garritan cfx and also VSL cfx and your observation is good, vsl cfx have very cold tone, and from the first day I don`t like his top notes. Now I even consider to sell it despite they are both very playable and good libraries. Sound wise no match for Embertone. Of course, let recent owners of PV Steinway to enjoy.

Ah thanks !!
Always good to keep some money in the pocket for the time being......and i value your opinion because i don’t know anyone who has so many piano libraries (with hands on experience) to compare..... grin

Thank you, I will do my best to give some advice about piano libraries respecting the fact that people are very different about sound they hear. Anyway this is the first time I don`t have a G.A.S about new PV Steinway and thats good. I need that update for Emberton and I am set for a long time I hope smile

Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: angmyu] #2759271
08/17/18 05:42 PM
08/17/18 05:42 PM
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Originally Posted by angmyu
Originally Posted by karvala
The authentic pedal seems to be broken for me (anyone else tried it?), having a very strange effect on the sounds. Similarly, the Ambisonics options are less user-friendly than they could be, but more fundamentally also broken and creating very strange sounds. I hope both of those will be fixed in due course. The user interface also has some very strange behaviour; for example, selecting a convolution reverb setting on the Main page at the moment wipes out all of the other settings, so that all mics are turned off, all speakers are panned left, all volumes are minimised etc.. Some settings are present on multiple pages, but the settings are not always or reliably carried across from one page to another. Basically, it's clunky and buggy. It's usable, but it's a lot harder work than it needs to be.


Isn't that a problem that existed in Production Grand 2? I know Jason is a very passionate, sincere and capable man, but I wonder why he released without fixing all those errors.


Sorry, missed this yesterday. Yes, I believe you're correct. I'm not sure I entirely understand his approach either; he does leave some bugs permanently unfixed while moving on to new products, which is not good. It's also clear that the Concert Grand LE has not been through even the most basic beta testing worth the name, because the numerous issues that we have all identified would have been spotted immediately by an beta tester. I understand it's a very complex product to develop, but some basic beta testing is a necessity. It's quite disrespectful towards paying customers to release it in this state.

Last edited by karvala; 08/17/18 05:42 PM.

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: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759279
08/17/18 06:18 PM
08/17/18 06:18 PM
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Can somebody confirm, please, that "Batch-Resave" solves velocity-loudness issues appeared on some keys? Or what I hear is the placebo effect, and I'm happy to be deceived? smile



Casio PX-350
Komplete 10 Ult: UVI - Falcon; Vilabs - Ravenscroft; Pianoteq - 6 Std (Bluthner, Steinway D, K2); Galaxy - Vintage D, Vienna Grand; Production Voices - All Kontakt libs; Lounge Lizard EP-4; Neo-Soul Keys; AS - C7 Grand; Addictive Keys- All
Zoom UAC-2; Beyers DT-880 PRO; JBL - LSR305
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: karvala] #2759289
08/17/18 07:02 PM
08/17/18 07:02 PM
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Thanks for the detailed comments karvala, Max_Forte, Grazilerimba, etal.

Originally Posted by karvala
for example, selecting a convolution reverb setting on the Main page at the moment wipes out all of the other settings, so that all mics are turned off, all speakers are panned left


There was a December 2017 YouTube video on PVCG that was hard-panned left. That, and a handful of other comments noted in this thread would have been a good checklist for the developers. . .

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-HdGOwS-1U

Last edited by newer player; 08/17/18 07:08 PM.
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Max_Forte] #2759292
08/17/18 07:25 PM
08/17/18 07:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Max_Forte
Can somebody confirm, please, that "Batch-Resave" solves velocity-loudness issues appeared on some keys? Or what I hear is the placebo effect, and I'm happy to be deceived? smile


Don't take my word for it, but i often see developers suggesting the batch-resave to fix various "fresh installation" passive bugs that usually go away after the procedure is done. But i know for a fact that batch-resave DOES speed up loading times dramatically that's for sure.

Last edited by tdwctdwc; 08/17/18 07:26 PM.

VSL CFX, Ravenscroft 275, Keyscape, NOIRE, Garritan CFX, Art Vista Virtual Grand 3, Acousticsamples C7, Korg Kronos, Ivory ACD, Galaxy Vintage D.
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759294
08/17/18 07:29 PM
08/17/18 07:29 PM
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Oh, that totally useless "Ambisonic" mic... frown 15GB of a total 70GB is that "Ambisonic" mic. I'd be glad to delete it but what if that will cause problems...


Casio PX-350
Komplete 10 Ult: UVI - Falcon; Vilabs - Ravenscroft; Pianoteq - 6 Std (Bluthner, Steinway D, K2); Galaxy - Vintage D, Vienna Grand; Production Voices - All Kontakt libs; Lounge Lizard EP-4; Neo-Soul Keys; AS - C7 Grand; Addictive Keys- All
Zoom UAC-2; Beyers DT-880 PRO; JBL - LSR305
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759295
08/17/18 07:43 PM
08/17/18 07:43 PM
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This is how samples are organized:






[Linked Image]


Casio PX-350
Komplete 10 Ult: UVI - Falcon; Vilabs - Ravenscroft; Pianoteq - 6 Std (Bluthner, Steinway D, K2); Galaxy - Vintage D, Vienna Grand; Production Voices - All Kontakt libs; Lounge Lizard EP-4; Neo-Soul Keys; AS - C7 Grand; Addictive Keys- All
Zoom UAC-2; Beyers DT-880 PRO; JBL - LSR305
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759310
08/17/18 09:52 PM
08/17/18 09:52 PM
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Out of curiosity for those that also have the Concert Grand Compact, do you notice the same weaker upper registers in CGC vs. CG LE? This would be the outside mic (M149s) in the CG LE for the comparison. This might indicate whether it is in the samples or just the Kontakt programming.

Jason mentions "sampled from a New York built Steinway D with a model number starting with 589 ***. A little more info from the manual that may explain some of the artifacts:

"Concert Grand is sampled from a Steinway D that just came off tour with a famous Canadian artist (his initials are B.A. for those guessing). The piano was in great shape, but was used enough to have a character of its own. This piano had some mechanical noises from the hammer mechanism that were louder than the Yamaha C7 that I am used to. My guess is that the longer strings and quick action required a little more effort from the mechanism."

Also, note on page 20, there are some additional adjustments under the hood available in the edit mode.


Last edited by bsntn99; 08/17/18 09:53 PM.
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759371
08/18/18 08:19 AM
08/18/18 08:19 AM
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Yes, the same weaker upper registers. It's definitely in the samples, and across all different mics. The piano details are very informative and explain why the piano is so bright in the middle registers (I'm guessing it will have been prepared that way for a rock tour, and then used in that range extensively) and so weak in the upper registers (hammers not yet cut in through lack of use). I'm not so sure about "in great shape"; the lower registers sound like they've taken a bit of a beating.


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: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759402
08/18/18 11:18 AM
08/18/18 11:18 AM
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Thanks for confirming the same issue exists in Concert Grand Compact. In the sfz spec used for Sforzando, you can apply adjustments to each sample or sample group. This is partly why Garritan CFX, which is essentially an sfz, sounds as even as it does. Not sure if this is possible at a sample level in Kontakt. I know it is possible at a group level.

I did also note based on CGC some buzziness with a few notes in the upper range and some unison tuning problems. Probably saw a lot of use on the road and was definitely set up to cut through rather than for a classical or more balanced performance - a missed opportunity. I may have dodged a bullet on this one. Forgot to mention, the piano is said by Jason to be 2010 or newer, so most likely not cut in as you mentioned.

Last edited by bsntn99; 08/18/18 11:20 AM.
Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759497
08/18/18 08:31 PM
08/18/18 08:31 PM
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When I was interested in Concert Grand I found that demos presented by Production Voices weren't very informative.
I decided to share the demo with all who are looking for an additional info.

Link to rendered midi file played by Su Yeon Kim downloaded from E-piano competition:

FLAC on Dropbox

No over effects added but little of a built-in reverb. Custom preset used. It so easy to dial sound you are looking for, but at least 4 mic positions are completely useless to me.

If you have any specific MIDI file you think can be very helpful to assess the sound quality of CG I can render it and post here.

Concert Grand sounds really great and natural!


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Re: Steinway D Concert Grand [Re: Cinjero] #2759520
08/18/18 10:57 PM
08/18/18 10:57 PM
Joined: Aug 2015
Posts: 243
CT
wolfgangmeister Offline
Full Member
wolfgangmeister  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Aug 2015
Posts: 243
CT
Hi Max,

I'd be interested to hear two of my MIDI recordings rendered to assess the sound quality of PV's Steinway D Concert Grand VI. One is a lyrical recording of the Gluck-Sgambati Melody I recently posted on PianoWorld to assess PianoTeq v6.2.2 and the latest Steingraeber E-272 VI vs. four other PianoTeq VIs; the other is a more virtuostic recording of Liszt's "Orage" (from 'Annees de Pelerinage') that really tests the power, sustain and polyphony of any VI.

Gluck & Liszt MIDIs in Dropbox

P.S. I would also be interested to compare this to the new Full version of Embertone's Walker Steinway D VI, Garritan CFX Concert Grand Full, or Synthogy Ivory II American Concert D, if anyone is so inclined. Playability of both pieces using PianoTeq v6.2.2 with a fast Multi-Core PC & SSD via a real acoustic keyboard is outstanding.
P.S.S. Here's a reference YouTube link comparing the various PianoTeq VI's:

Gluck-Sgambati: Melody in Dm - PianoTeq Demo


Jason Solomonides
Mason & Hamlin 7' BB 93623
Yamaha 6'1" C3 (w/WNG) D3010008
My Piano Recordings:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L7aJcfJZZvg&list=PLkP65I5BsNirTcv-nAHm4BXXsCbB_EbAJ
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