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Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848845 05/16/19 01:04 PM
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Garritan is OK, the other three sound rather lifeless, especially the Yamaha.

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Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848862 05/16/19 01:47 PM
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It's funny how impressions are so different. CyberGene I wonder if you ever did another shootout like this if you'd initially leave off what the source was, so just a blind ABCD test. I wonder if it would influence the results.

My personal take, well I'm very used to the N1X sound and I quite like it, Garritan maybe a bit more as it has a little more processing that's pleasing to me. There's something about Pianoteq that doesn't work with my ears and it's still very present. It's the attack, it's got this bongo like sound to me I can't get over. I've tried many things to minimize the sound with my own setup. I hear it even in the Bechstein though it's less prevalent.

I hate to say it because the "bongo" comment has been made fun of in the past but that's really what it sounds like to me.


Now learning: Chopin C# minor Nocturne (posth), Mozart Sonata in C K. 545, R. Schumann Fantasy Dance, Joplin The Chrysanthemum
Instruments: Yamaha N1X, Kawai ES110, Roland GO:PIANO, Piano de Voyage
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
Chrispy #2848871 05/16/19 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Chrispy
It's the attack, it's got this bongo like sound to me I can't get over. I've tried many things to minimize the sound with my own setup. I hear it even in the Bechstein though it's less prevalent.

I hate to say it because the "bongo" comment has been made fun of in the past but that's really what it sounds like to me.

The irony is that thickfingers adopted Pianoteq to avoid a bongo sound on the FP30. I guess this just proves: What is beautiful music to one, is bongo to another! smile


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"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848872 05/16/19 01:57 PM
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Chrispy, ahh, you’re right, I should’ve anonymized the results and just see the comments. I’m sorry I didn’t do it, it would’ve been really interesting... Well, next time smile


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Currently: Yamaha N1X, DIY hybrid controller -> Garritan CFX
Previously: NU1X, ES7, MP6, CA63, RD-700SX, CDP-100, FP-5, P90, SP-200
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848881 05/16/19 02:08 PM
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I suspect a lot of us know what the PianoTeq Steinway & Garritan CFX sound like. So could easily deduce the N1X and PianoTeq Bechstein. Maybe the blind test would not be useful there.

Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
Tyrone Slothrop #2848888 05/16/19 02:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
Originally Posted by CyberGene
Tbut I can admit the Bechstein DG is a really good patch. Maybe I can still detect the typical modeling sound I don’t like but it’s the best from Pianoteq I’ve heard so far smile

C. Bechstein DG is my current favorite from Pianoteq. I've been using it as my go to for my FP30. It's the one I used for this ABF recital submission of a few days ago.


I've just spent some time with the new version (6.5) of Pianoteq using the Bechstein. I haven't been able to play lately, and I only messed around a bit, but the improvement is huge.

I listened to your recital submission. Well played!

Last edited by johnstaf; 05/16/19 02:31 PM.
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
Tyrone Slothrop #2848889 05/16/19 02:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
Originally Posted by Chrispy
I hate to say it because the "bongo" comment has been made fun of in the past but that's really what it sounds like to me.

The irony is that thickfingers adopted Pianoteq to avoid a bongo sound on the FP30. I guess this just proves: What is beautiful music to one, is bongo to another! smile

Indeed. I detect no bongos at all in Pianoteq. Every preset, although different to each other, at least is consistent in tonal change as you go along the octaves. Not so the Roland, yakkk.

Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848894 05/16/19 02:45 PM
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Funny story. The church got a Roland digital piano, I think a RD300nx way back when I was helping out at some masses. It was nice because I didn't have to bring my Alesis QS8 board all the time. My wife said when you play both side by side I can hear the difference between the two. But if I just heard either board by themselves I would think the sound is just fine. Wife also said "the congregation couldn't t / wouldn't care too. Sound is such a subjective thing. I didn't like Pianoteq until version 5 came out. Didn't love it but I liked it and finally brought it. With version 6 I'm liking it more and more and glad I'm supporting them to make it better. Now, would I love a Kawai NV10 or Yamaha NX1, sure I would but right now I can't afford one. By the way I use Pianoteq with a Casio PX5S piano right now.


All these years playing and I still consider myself a novice.
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848907 05/16/19 03:19 PM
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Listening on monitors ...

PIANOTEQ STEINWAY D
Drab. Check the court docket ... I smell a defamation suit against Modartt.

PIANOTEQ BECHSTEIN
Much better than the Steinway, but still drab.

YAMAHA N1X CFX BINAURAL
Very good, but a bit dry. It needs some air. Or some reverb. Or both.
Does the N1X have a reverb tweak?
Since this is binaural I'll have to try it again with headphones.

So, with headphones ... this really REALLY needs some air. I felt boxed in.
The lower notes (no lower than A3 or B3 IIRC) were boxy. The speakers sounded better.
The upper notes were clean and beautiful, though. Gorgeous.
But when I say high notes keep in mind that this piece goes no higher than the #5 octave.

GARRITAN CFX (Note: You said these were all wav files, but this one is an aiff file. Does that matter?)
Superb. I didn't know whether or not I'd like a CFX. But I do. This is really excellent.
Gotta run to Walgreens now. Gotta pick up some Beano ... because I feel some Garritan G.A.S. coming on.

Thanks for posting these, CyberGene. This has been an ear-opening demo.

Next steps
1. CyberGene runs out to buy a Novus.
2. CyberGene runs this same test on the Novus.
3. CyberGene posts the wav file.
4. MacMacMac has a chance to decide whether he wants an N1X or a Novus.
Thank you CyberGene. smile

Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848908 05/16/19 03:21 PM
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Interestingly, I found Steinway B is much better than Steinway D in pianoteq. I just hate the sound of Steinway D in pianoteq. Have you tried the Steinway B?

Also I’m not convinced by Yamaha’s own sample for a long time. Listen to this comparison by Cunningham piano who compared Yamaha B series uprights with their own samples using the silent system. The acoustic pianos are miles ahead and have a lot more details under Hugh Sung’s hands.

Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848911 05/16/19 03:23 PM
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Compare those recordings to this one by JoBert:

https://youtu.be/48VRiG0zb6Q



Kawai NV10
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848916 05/16/19 03:33 PM
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I only tried binaural CFX once when I tested the N3X in the store. I feel it’s OK and more playable than Garritan CFX, especially the sympathetic resonance and pedaling. However, I still believe pianoteq is the most playable piano out there. I believe Yamaha only uses modeling for string resonance but not for fundamental tone generating. I also suspect Yamaha samples are less than 1GB with around 10 velocity layers.

Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848928 05/16/19 04:23 PM
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The N1X sounded very clean and direct, like played in a very small room padded all over with velvet. I would have preferred a bit more reverb.

I think the Garritan was by far the most "real" sounding, but this was probably due to the reverb. And for my taste the reverb was too dominant.

The Pianoteq Steinway sounded horrid a low levels, but louder notes came out very decent. Pianoteq Bechstein was rather good all around, but in both Pianoteq recordings the pedal sounds were set too loud for my taste.

Actually, I am quite shocked by how poor the Steinway D came out; this new release of Pianoteq specifically included improvements to this very piano (and also the Bechstein), but to me the D sounds dramatically worsened. I have to install the new version tomorrow to test for myself.

Cybergene, if you do another shootout one day, please include the Bösendorfer as well! smile


Roland FP-30, Roland E-28
Synthogy Studio Grands, Production Voices Estate Grand, Garritan CFX Lite, Pianoteq 6.7.3 (Blüthner, Bechstein DG, Grotrian, Steinway D, K2)
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2848981 05/16/19 06:38 PM
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Originally Posted by CyberGene
I went through the files now with my headphones and while I like the N1X best, I can also understand why people may not be impressed. It shows nothing about its playability that puts it miles ahead of the other three. Maybe that can also be achieved with a note by note editing in Pianoteq but as of now the N1X expectedly is the only one which feels like a real piano, and an excellent one at that, when played. The others have slight discrepancies, would need voicing here and there, maybe brightening some notes, darkening others, changing velocity not just globally but in regions or even per key, etc.

P.S. That Steinway is such a shame... It epitomizes everything I used to hate about Pianoteq. But the Bechstein makes up for it and is a promising step towards the hope modeled pianos can actually compete with sampled ones. Not a giant leap, but not a small step either smile


Thanks for doing this experiment!

I listened to all 4 recordings twice using my Sennheiser HD 6XX’s and Dragonfly Red. All 4 recordings are high quality and sound lovely but I do have a slight preference for the binaural N1X sound. It sounds the most natural and realistic to my ear.


Yamaha N1X, P-515.
Genelec 8331 monitors and 7350 sub.
VI’s: Garritan CFX, VSL Bösendorfer Upright, and VSL Blüthner 1895. Pianoteq.
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2849018 05/16/19 08:22 PM
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Listening on my small in-ear earphone ...

Garritan CFX sounds really nice like a recording in a good room. Whether that is good from player perspective, I'm not sure.
No wonder it becomes a favorite choice for many people.

N1X sounds a bit dry and in your face. (or is it "in your ear" ?)
If that's binaural supposed to be, I guess it works well.

Since Pianoteq 6, I don't think the Steinway D model is one of their best anymore. Not sure if it was from the start either.
After Bechstein, I would pick Steinway B or Petrof.

This is fun. Thanks for the post.

Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
siros #2849044 05/16/19 09:40 PM
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Originally Posted by siros


N1X sounds a bit dry and in your face. (or is it "in your ear" ?)
If that's binaural supposed to be, I guess it works well.


Is the binaural sample kept completely dry? Is it possible to add reverb to it? Or is it meant to represent that piano in the room in which it was sampled?

Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
ando #2849045 05/16/19 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by ando
Originally Posted by siros


N1X sounds a bit dry and in your face. (or is it "in your ear" ?)
If that's binaural supposed to be, I guess it works well.


Is the binaural sample kept completely dry? Is it possible to add reverb to it? Or is it meant to represent that piano in the room in which it was sampled?

In the piano store two days ago, I saw that reverb defaults to a setting of '5'.


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across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2849049 05/16/19 10:15 PM
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Yeah, that was the default reverb level of 5. It can go up to 20 which is really deep. As to the AIFF file from the Garritan, it’s the format that Garritan’s player uses when doing recordings. If I’m not mistaken it’s exactly the same as WAV, only the extension name differs.


My YouTube, My Soundcloud
Currently: Yamaha N1X, DIY hybrid controller -> Garritan CFX
Previously: NU1X, ES7, MP6, CA63, RD-700SX, CDP-100, FP-5, P90, SP-200
Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2849092 05/17/19 02:18 AM
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This is just an incorrect comparison. Garritan CFX has too much reverb while the N1X is very dry. Reverb is a very important factor in perception, and many people buy it and even abuse it (hi, cubusdk from YouTube). I am surprised that only a few people noted this.

Re: N1X vs Garritan CFX vs Pianoteq
CyberGene #2849093 05/17/19 02:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug M.
Hi guys,

This is a recording of the Rd2000 of the same piece: sound patch 0003 mellow concert.


I like it very much! I would probably rate it 2nd after Garritan, even considering it was played by a beginner.

But could someone who owns RD2000, please, confirm that it's the mellow patch. On the recording it sounds pretty bright. Though probably it has been played that way.

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