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Joined: Jul 2012
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Just my 2 cents based on what i've owned over the years. If i had to start from scratch and do it over again, i would choose either one of those:

- Ravenscroft 275: Immaculate scripting. With a good controller, it's hard to beat. Excels in "jazzy" material. These guys explain in detail why the Ravenscroft is so good: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bvlFr7DFr3o and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rpquLAhuJIg

- Garritan CFX: A pillar for classical. But everyone seems to ignore how good it is for cinematic and pop as well. How? where? Explore the presets in the other mic positions besides the default mics:) Also, there are some presets which use the soft pedal that are simply stunning.

- VSL CFX: I call it the final production workhorse because it sounds good everywhere. A lot of audiophiles talk how Keyscape is a producer's dream but i say the VSL CFX should take that crown. It just sounds so full, vivid and so real anywhere you listen to it (car, earphones, headphones, laptop, PA system etc...). Has a very deep editing engine (almost Pianoteq like) and that editing engine is a must to use in order to get the "best" of it.


Sorry for the lengthy thoughts on each but i just wanted to share how i feel about those pianos.

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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
Two weeks ago CyberGene put it this way: "... the CFX sounds like a real piano. Pianoteq is thin and metallic, with an apparent clank to the attack."


I entirely agree that Pianoteq tends towards sounding metallic out of the box. But what people generally are not aware of is that you can change the timbre a LOT by adjusting the velocity curve. In general the metallic sounds come forth at loud volumes (ie. high MIDI velocity values), but these can be avoided entirely by disallowing the velocity curve to get anywhere near the highest MIDI velocity values. This reduces dynamics, but there is also a dynamics slider which can then subsequently be used to bring the full dynamic range back again.


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Synthogy Ivory II Studio Grands, Production Voices Estate Grand, Garritan CFX Lite, Pianoteq 7.0 (Blüthner, Bechstein DG, Grotrian, Steinway D, K2)
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RobR,
I don`t plan any productions, yt-videos etc.... just playing along for myself. How would you rate those 3 for this?

Thanks

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I recommend Garritan CFX (Full Version)

Pianoteq is nice too, but sounds way to similar between the instrument packs. Also there are some artifacts in it that i don't like.


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Pianoteq 7 Pro | Garritan CFX Full | Vienna Imperial | Keyscape Full | Ravenscroft 275 - Modern U - Model D - AG | Minigrand
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Originally Posted by Chordo24
RobR,
I don`t plan any productions, yt-videos etc.... just playing along for myself. How would you rate those 3 for this?

Thanks

I rate them all as excellent. Can't go wrong with either. The Garritan has the advantage that it has a lite version which you can "test the waters" with. Same playability as the full version minus the ambient mics.

If you have an ipad, the Ravenscroft also has an ios version which is as good as the desktop version, except it only has the close mics and you don't have control over parameters (it offer presets instead).

Last edited by RobR; 07/22/19 05:31 AM.
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Originally Posted by RobR
A lot of audiophiles talk how Keyscape is a producer's dream ....

I’m very curious about the Keyscape VSTs. Spectrasonics apparently put extraordinary love, care and attention into re-creating those pianos & keyboards. And i like the way it locks into and compliments Omnisohere. Generally it gets very positive reviews and the demos can be gorgeous but it doesn’t seem to be popular among the players that post online. Maybe as you pointed out, it’s more of a producer VST rather than a player’s VST?



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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
Just yesterday I installed the much heralded Garritan CFX. Superb. It kicks even more dust in Pianoteq's face, mainly because it sounds like there's a piano in the room. I highly recommend it.

Glad you like it.
I've rather taken a liking to the CFX myself too and catch myself preferring it over Pianoteq more and more. :X


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VPC 1 -> Pianoteq 7 Std | Garritan CFX / Pearl Alto Flute 201
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Originally Posted by Groove On
Originally Posted by RobR
A lot of audiophiles talk how Keyscape is a producer's dream ....

I’m very curious about the Keyscape VSTs. Spectrasonics apparently put extraordinary love, care and attention into re-creating those pianos & keyboards. And i like the way it locks into and compliments Omnisohere. Generally it gets very positive reviews and the demos can be gorgeous but it doesn’t seem to be popular among the players that post online. Maybe as you pointed out, it’s more of a producer VST rather than a player’s VST?


Keyscape is great. Many people don't know this but it has close to 30 velocity layers. The issue i have with it is the fact that it's a custom C7 with special felts. It's not your typical clean C7 that you can EASILY do classical gymnastics on, specifically in the bass registers which in my opinion are its weak point. Other than that, it's fantastic for cinematic and jazz where the context mostly relies on lyrical or fast solo runs in the mid and upper-mid registers. It's fantastic for that. Not to mention that it integrates beautifully with Omnisphere, especially if you buy the "Keyscape Creative" package. Spectrasonics also added their secret sauce in it. It's not really that much of a secret sauce to me, basically it's a tape saturator that they use in their engine, which makes the piano very rich sounding and full of body.

Last edited by RobR; 07/22/19 06:44 AM.
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I reckon Pianoteq has a sale on for July, on their instrument packs. I enjoy the diversity these different instruments display, although not particularly liking all I've bought. It's good for the soul, to sometimes play a piano you don't like . . .
The most realistic is to me, the Bechstein vintage from their Klemscregg 2 package. Some nicely out of tune aspects in those which gives superb resonances . . .


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Originally Posted by MacMacMac

Just yesterday I installed the much heralded Garritan CFX. Superb. It kicks even more dust in Pianoteq's face.


Hang on a minute, since when did the Garritan CFX become Charles Atlas or have I missed something😳

Paul H

Last edited by pmh; 07/22/19 09:39 AM.

Kemble Compact Acoustic Piano, Yamaha CVP 709 Polished White, Kawai MP11se, Pianoteq Standard, Galaxy Vintage D, Garritan CFX.
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Originally Posted by pmh
...hang on a minute, since when did the Garritan CFX become Charles Atlas or have I missed something😳



Hi Paul,

The only thing you missed was the feeble attempt to diss PTQ once more.... smile

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Worth a mention is Embertone. I think it has the best samples of any VST out there, in particular its resonances and staccato samples. The Lite version is only $40. Garritan is a good balance of sound and playability, but it's always sounded a little too 'pristine' to me.

Pianoteq is still king for playability. Nothing else has the dynamic range (essentially infinite) or customizability. It's still what I'd recommend to anyone looking to buy a single VST because it's a no-hassle setup, and it's always getting better. Pianoteq keeps getting better, whereas with sampled VST's I'm always looking for the 'next big thing.'

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I’m not sure what you mean by “infinite” dynamic range. That pressing the keys with velocity of 127 would produce sound volume that that’s so loud it can be heard throughout the universe? smile Dynamic range is something else, you must be confusing it with something else.


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Get Pianoteq. I was disappointed with Garritan CFX - overblown, overhyped, over-reverbed VST.


Kawai MP11 : JBL LSR305 : Focusrite 2i4 : Pianoteq / Garritan CFX

We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams. -Willy Wonka


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Originally Posted by scorpio
Get Pianoteq. I was disappointed with Garritan CFX - overblown, overhyped, over-reverbed VST.

*gets popcorn* This should be good...


Youtube piano recordings (classical music/video games/anime): https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCh9N3Xirs86USDQXE1WiwXg
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If you have not listened to rach3master's YT channel, you must do so. And the nice part, which I wish more players did, he provides a link to his CFX settings. Nice job!


Kawai MP11 : JBL LSR305 : Focusrite 2i4 : Pianoteq / Garritan CFX

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Originally Posted by scorpio
I was disappointed with Garritan CFX - overblown, overhyped, over-reverbed VST.
True.

Originally Posted by scorpio
If you have not listened to rach3master's YT channel, you must do so. And the nice part, which I wish more players did, he provides a link to his CFX settings. Nice job!
rach3master's most recent video sounds spectacular.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y68INEDc1EU

His Garritan CFX settings are linked here. Much different from my settings and typical settings used here. I'll try them today
http://forum.pianoworld.com/ubbthre...tan-cfx-concert-grand-full-settings.html

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Something I learned only very recently is rach3master is a girl smile Indeed, she’s one of the best examples of how good Gartitan CFX is.


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I am reminded of a time when I was just beginning to develop cataracts in my eyes.

I researched the topic online and at my next eye exam ....

I presented a few of the homeopathic options that were frequently suggested in my research and asked him which of them he thought might be worth trying as a means of slowing down the progression of the cataracts.

He replied .... "Try them all".

That same wry suggestion might very well apply to this (which VST to try) topic as well.

Therefore .... I suggest ....

Try Them All

Good Luck

Oh ... BTW ..... None of them (catataract cures) worked.


Don

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Originally Posted by CyberGene
Something I learned only very recently is rach3master is a girl smile


Why does this comment seem a bit RUDE to me ?

Oh,wait .... I know .... because I just saw a comment made by Rach3master 2 comments prior to this.


AND ..... the icon that accompanies the name Rach3master on the youtube videos does not appear to be a girl.

Color me old-fashion but I think that was an extremely rude comment and would expect an apology forthcoming.

(Whether it is true or not) and it matters not to me one way or another.


Don

Kawai MP7SE, Pianoteq, FocusRite Scarlett 2i2 Audio Interface, Yamaha MG06 Mixer
KRK 5" Studio Monitors or Edifier R1850DB Bookshelf speakers or SennHeiser HD 559 Headphones
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