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Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
#2974225 05/02/20 07:59 PM
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Hi all!
It's David back again. First of all, I want to apologize for not checking back on here as soon as I'm supposed to. Some of you have shared some great things in my last thread months ago, and have even proposed to email me your settings to make my experience with Ravenscroft and the StudioLogic L-88 Grand even better. I have since sent that poster a private message, I hope he or she can get it soon.
Meanwhile, my journey with Ravenscroft in the UVIWorkstation is going along very well, and I love the tones of the instrument very much. However, when I play Bach or Mozart, or other composers that use little pedal, I find that the sustains are a bit on the shorter side -- the decays are a bit too quick. Also, some of the velocity levels have a large contrast, between the slightly louder and slightly softer dynamics. Perhaps I need better settings, but this problem has been with me for a little over a month and I'm noticing the effects this has brought.
I don't want to shelve any more money to buy another piano sample library, but let's just say that if I really had to do this...
If I really need to do this to get longer sustains, for example, what piano can be similar to the Ravenscroft -- having soft pedal samples, a rich concert tone and is efficient in computer resources and hard drive space?
Thanks very much, and let the discussion begin! I hope this time I can respond much quickly here.
Thanks again!
David

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2974395 05/03/20 11:01 AM
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For playing Bach turn the Dynamics setting down to taste. This will give you less volume range.

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
PianoMan51 #2974512 05/03/20 03:46 PM
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Yeah, that might be something to try -- I usually love to have the dynamic range by factory defaults, as I trust that they want us to hear what was originally captured. But it wouldn't be too bad turning down the dynamic range a bit, too. Maybe that would help with the short sustains when pedal is not engaged?

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2974527 05/03/20 04:41 PM
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In the time you took to reply,you could have started to explore the Dynamics range settings. You could do that right now.

Or instead, tell us all about the importance of dynamic range in Bach keyboard pieces.

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2974537 05/03/20 05:22 PM
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"Maybe turn up the volume of your headphones a bit. On a Yamaha C7 in a LA studio, velocity averages for pro Jazz pianists was in the high 50s and (very) rarely reaching 90; your piano is different but that gives you some benchmark"

I'm not saying to blow your ears out but maybe playing at lower AVERAGE MIDI velocities in the 50s provides a more realistic tone.

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2974799 05/04/20 01:20 PM
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From my own comparisons I find Ravenscroft is already on the longer side for sustain...

Instead of the dynamics setting, you could also fiddle with the velocity mapping. What you describe sounds like that might be worth a shot. That should allow you to get the high/low contrast to a place that fits your idea of what it should be like.

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2974811 05/04/20 01:37 PM
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Thanks for your replies! So I decided to turn the dynamic range down a bit, and now I'm not experiencing so much the sudden shift between velocities that I was talking about before, and I'm beginning to like what I'm hearing again!
In regards to sustains on Ravenscroft, I have found a few days ago listening to YouTube videos of the Garritan CFX Concert Grand and the SYNCHRON Steinway D, that their over all note durations a re longer, making it easier to connect one note to the next. But for now, I don't think I will plan to purchase any more piano libraries. One is enough and very good already. smile

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2974823 05/04/20 02:06 PM
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Also you should see the old NAMM youtube videos with Ravenscroft275. Those show the settings of some pros and might be worth a try. Some might be beta software so check the dates are at least near final release of the software.

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
newer player #2974898 05/04/20 04:26 PM
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Originally Posted by newer player
Also you should see the old NAMM youtube videos with Ravenscroft275. Those show the settings of some pros and might be worth a try. Some might be beta software so check the dates are at least near final release of the software.

Well most of that is jazz music, but I'll give it a shot. Thanks for the suggestion! smile

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2975032 05/04/20 11:11 PM
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Originally Posted by David Lai
I find that the sustains are a bit on the shorter side -- the decays are a bit too quick.
That's why I dislike the Ravenscroft and never use it.


Macy

CVP-409GP, Garritan CFX, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, Pianoteq, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad Pro/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere
Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2975033 05/04/20 11:14 PM
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I find the Ravens a bit of a mix between a harpsichord and a piano. I like it, but rarely use it because...... Pianoteq! Hello?

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2975056 05/05/20 02:03 AM
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I don't use the close mic perspective, but generally speaking, a close mic perspective (close to the hammers, that is) will give you more attack than sustain. Personally I only use the 'side' mic perspective in Ravenscroft. The sustain doesn't drop right after the attack but maybe that's not what you mean. If what you want is a strong sustain seconds after you hit a note, then only compression will give you that.

Last edited by Alex C; 05/05/20 02:07 AM.
Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
Macy #2975288 05/05/20 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Macy
Originally Posted by David Lai
I find that the sustains are a bit on the shorter side -- the decays are a bit too quick.
That's why I dislike the Ravenscroft and never use it.

I see. So what piano sample library is your favourite?

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
Alex C #2975291 05/05/20 03:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Alex C
I don't use the close mic perspective, but generally speaking, a close mic perspective (close to the hammers, that is) will give you more attack than sustain. Personally I only use the 'side' mic perspective in Ravenscroft. The sustain doesn't drop right after the attack but maybe that's not what you mean. If what you want is a strong sustain seconds after you hit a note, then only compression will give you that.

I didn't realize that I can use different microphone perspectives. I try to avoid compression, and so that is not what I ment when I talked about sustains. I'm only talking about the long resonant sound of a note. That moment in Prokofiev's third piano sonata when you were asked to play a clustered chord, then every note off except the E4, I find that E hard to follow on Ravenscroft than when I still had access to a Steinway at school and when I played the work there. Similarly, I find the sustains when pedal off to be decaying slightly faster than an acoustic piano, so I find that I can't follow the decaying tones to produce a sense of legato.

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
Pete14 #2975295 05/05/20 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Pete14
I find the Ravens a bit of a mix between a harpsichord and a piano. I like it, but rarely use it because...... Pianoteq! Hello?

I've tried Pianoteq before, and have also heard YouTube videos covering it. But as much as I listen to it, I don't quite like the timber of the sound in there. Also, I'm afraid that the over sound of different pianos are similar to each other, instead of a sample library where the sonic differences are more defined coming from a real instrument and not mathematical algorithms.

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2975316 05/05/20 04:11 PM
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David Lai, what don’t you like about “the timber of the sound”? Is it too woody?

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
Pete14 #2975333 05/05/20 04:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Pete14
David Lai, what don’t you like about “the timber of the sound”? Is it too woody?

It's hard to put in words, but I'll try. I find the modeled pianos tend to have a mid range "fatter" than sampled counterparts, and that "fatness" extends all the way to around G6 or so, making the higher registers not that clear and cut-through. Also, the over all sound I hear is very dry and not that rich compared with samples. However, I do find the pianos extremely playable, and each time I press a key, there's a slight variant on the sound, which is nice. But compared with the ultimate sampled Steinway of Steinways -- Synchron Steinway D274, for example, the modartt Pianoteq Steinway D has a huge difference in how convincing the piano tone is. Not sure if this is clear enough, but I tried my best to put my thoughts into words. smile

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2975357 05/05/20 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by David Lai
Originally Posted by Macy
Originally Posted by David Lai
I find that the sustains are a bit on the shorter side -- the decays are a bit too quick.
That's why I dislike the Ravenscroft and never use it.

I see. So what piano sample library is your favourite?
I play pop and standards so Vintage D #1. Garritan CFX #2. Ivory II ACD #3. If I played classical I might reverse the order. If you want really long, adjustable sustain, then I'd use the CFX. But I like the Vintage D timbre (and its realistic timbre range adjustment) quite a bit better than the CFX, particularly in the octave below middle C, and its sustain is good enough for me.


Macy

CVP-409GP, Garritan CFX, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, Pianoteq, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad Pro/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere
Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
Macy #2975372 05/05/20 05:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Macy
Originally Posted by David Lai
Originally Posted by Macy
Originally Posted by David Lai
I find that the sustains are a bit on the shorter side -- the decays are a bit too quick.
That's why I dislike the Ravenscroft and never use it.

I see. So what piano sample library is your favourite?
I play pop and standards so Vintage D #1. Garritan CFX #2. Ivory II ACD #3. If I played classical I might reverse the order. If you want really long, adjustable sustain, then I'd use the CFX. But I like the Vintage D timbre (and its realistic timbre range adjustment) quite a bit better than the CFX, particularly in the octave below middle C, and its sustain is good enough for me.

I used to own the Vintage D and love the tone, however its limited velocity layers pained me over time, so I said goodbye to it 5 years after using it extensively! Ivory's American Concert D sounds brilliant, I've heard it before, but it requires some hardware in licensing, plus, like the CFX, it costs a lot in hard drive space. So I didn't choose either for the time being since my SSD is limited in space. Maybe in the future I might not mind moving to one of those instruments.

Re: Thoughts on Ravenscroft and moving forward
David Lai #2975379 05/05/20 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by David Lai
I used to own the Vintage D and love the tone, however its limited velocity layers pained me over time, so I said goodbye to it 5 years after using it extensively! Ivory's American Concert D sounds brilliant, I've heard it before, but it requires some hardware in licensing, plus, like the CFX, it costs a lot in hard drive space. So I didn't choose either for the time being since my SSD is limited in space. Maybe in the future I might not mind moving to one of those instruments.

The Vintage D has the widest realistic adjustable timbre range of any VST I've ever used, an adjustable dynamic range that is extremely convincing to my ears, and very monotonic velocity layers, so I completely disagree about any limitation related to velocity layers. I would consider that one of its key strengths over other VSTs. It's not about specs. It has limitations and shortcomings like every VST, but that isn't one of them in my mind.

BTW, in my initial comment about the Vintage D, I didn't mean to imply that its sustain was limited or not adjustable. It's fully adjustable over a short to excessive range, like the CFX. I think CFX sustain is just a bit more optimally distributed over the upper octaves.

Last edited by Macy; 05/05/20 06:06 PM.

Macy

CVP-409GP, Garritan CFX, Vintage D, Ivory II GP's & American Concert D, Pianoteq, True Keys American D, Ravenscroft 275, Garritan Authorized Steinway, Alicia's Keys, EWQL Pianos, MainStage, iPad Pro/forScore/PageFlip Cicada, Custom Mac MIDI/Audio Software Design, Macs Everywhere
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