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Embertone Releases: Walker 1955 Steinway 'D'

markleake

Recovering sale addict
Personally I find the demos are a bit hit and miss maybe. Not that they don't sound nice, but I find it hard to evaluate things like the bass notes, as they are doubled a lot by synth or other instruments, and some of the quirky playing makes it hard to judge. But when it is allowed to shine, this piano really does sound beautiful. And @rottoy's little experiment sounded great! Also it sounds a bit strange sometimes in the demos, I think just due to processing to sound like that for the track??

I have too many pianos and end up disappointed with them all, but this sounds like it does soft very well AND opens up nicely when you play it harder. I would love to hear the different mics.

And more demos please! :)
 

CGR

Pianist, Composer & Arranger
Would love to hear your tests :)
Sure - here's some very simple improvised playing I did within the first few minutes of launching it. I was listening for resonance, voicing and tuning, tone and stereo image. Sometimes overly complex playing can disguise these qualities with sampled pianos I've found. This is the Lite version, with the 12 layers selected, built-in reverb disabled, tone & dynamics switches on + a touch of EW Spaces on the master out. (the piano also sounds great dry, or with some of the built in verbs).

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/embertone-walker-1955-steinway-d-lite-spaces_03-mp3.13965/][/AUDIOPLUS]

[AUDIOPLUS=https://www.vi-control.net/community/attachments/embertone-walker-1955-steinway-d-lite-spaces_03-mp3.13965/][/AUDIOPLUS]
 

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markleake

Recovering sale addict
Sure - here's some very simple improvised playing I did within the first few minutes of launching it. I was listening for resonance, voicing and tuning, tone and stereo image. Sometimes overly complex playing can disguise these qualities with sampled pianos I've found. This is the Lite version, with the 12 layers selected, built-in reverb disabled, tone & dynamics switches on + a touch of EW Spaces on the master out. (the piano also sounds great dry, or with some of the built in verbs).

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/embertone-walker-1955-steinway-d-lite-spaces_03-mp3.13965/][/AUDIOPLUS]
Wow! CGR... that sounds really great to me! Thanks so much for posting this.

How does it feel like to play?
 

CGR

Pianist, Composer & Arranger
Wow! CGR... that sounds really great to me! Thanks so much for posting this.

How does it feel like to play?
Very natural Mark. I'm using a Yamaha CP4 stage (88 key triple sensor hammer action) and the Embertone Steinway is very even and consistent, and a real joy to play. I grew up with acoustic pianos - have played, performed and recorded on many Steinway (and other brand) grand pianos, so feel I have a solid point of reference. I read that the piano Embertone sampled had an advanced player system fitted to it, so velocities were captured extremely accurately.

Glad my simple demo was of some help!
 
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markleake

Recovering sale addict
Good to hear that. I generally find VI pianos annoying to play personally. Not that I am a great player, but I can't get past how the natural roll off of each note just doesn't sustain like it does on real pianos. They feel dead in a way. How much of that effect do you get with this piano? If you say it feels very natural, are you saying it is sampled well enough at the various velocities for the first sustain part after the attack (where I find this issue start to set in with a lot of VI pianos) to start feeling real-ish enough compared to a real piano?

Certainly hearing it in the examples it sounds to have a lot more realistic character to it than some other VI pianos I have. I guess what I am asking is after playing it for a little while, do you feel frustrated about the sustains fading too fast and lack of resonance, or is that not too much of a problem from a player's perspective for this piano?
 

CGR

Pianist, Composer & Arranger
I've really only spent about 20 minutes with it so far, so I'm sure I'll have more to say, but my experience was similar to just walking up to a piano in a studio and playing, and instantly enjoying it. Very rich and warm, with plenty of sustain and body. Also, I didn't feel the need to delve into the interface and tweak settings like many sampled pianos I've bought. It just felt and sounded great. I quickly A/B'd it with Ivory 2.5 American Concert D (similar vintage - 50's era Steinway D) and although the 12 (Embertone) vs 20 (Ivory) velocities were apparent, I prefer the overall experience of the Embertone Steinway, and the top end is sweeter and more resonant & natural than Ivory ACD.

Keep in mind I'm comparing the Embertone Steinway Lite version at $39, to the much more expensive Ivory American D, which doesn't have the expandability of additional velocities (36) and range of Mic perspectives like the full version of the Embertone Steinway D.
 

Michel Simons

Active Member
Well, 30 euros for the lite version almost feels like stealing it. I had the same problem with the download tool as already reported, but switching from download & install to just download and then unpacking it manually with WinRAR seems to have worked.
 

markleake

Recovering sale addict
Cheers CGR, thanks so much for the info. Even if you've had little time with it, it is still valuable to hear this kind of first play experience. It does indeed sound like it could play as well as it sounds. :)

And for such a small price to compare so well with the benchmark, at first glance at least... it certainly has me very interested. :thumbsup:
 

CGR

Pianist, Composer & Arranger
Cheers CGR, thanks so much for the info. Even if you've had little time with it, it is still valuable to hear this kind of first play experience. It does indeed sound like it could play as well as it sounds. :)

And for such a small price to compare so well with the benchmark, at first glance at least... it certainly has me very interested. :thumbsup:
Here's another bit of playing - the very first thing I played with it. Nothing complicated, but hopefully it will give you an idea of the resonance and tone across the piano.

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/embertone-walker-1955-steinway-d-lite-spaces_01-mp3.13966/][/AUDIOPLUS]
 

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HardyP

Active Member
That’s how I understood it (obviously need Embertone to confirm). I read it as essentially three options:
1. Lite
2. Full - includes default mic position and to which other mic options can be added a la carte.
3. Pro Complete - which includes all mic positions.
I use the term Pro Complete to try and differentiate. This isn't used on the website. (Again need Embertone to confirm this).
So in terms of @dgrace's question:
On their page, it says only "+Full Mic Collection". Means (in terms of your numbering scheme) this:
upload_2018-6-15_17-30-29.png
Which also maks sense, since 5 additional mic positions is 75$, what is nearly exactly the proce difference between 2. and 3.
It´s a bit confusing, but only the option 3. shows the early bird discount in the cart, the other ones need to the "Checkout" as it says in the head line...
 

bsntn99

New Member
I am also interested in trying out the Lite version during this sale period. But only if I can just pay the difference then to go up to the full or full/all mics while the sale is still on if I like the sound/playability. Have been burnt as well too many times with Kontakt piano libraries which always seem to fall short in some aspect.
 
This thing sounds very interesting! And here I am always telling myself I have enough piano VI's...
I have a possibly more 'advanced' question. For feature films I would probably want to use this piano in surround. So probably with the C414s or U87s as close mics and thus front signal, and the room mics for the back. How are mics selected in the library? Does each mic have a separate Kontakt patch? If so, is each mic patch programmed the same way that it will trigger the same (but different sounding) samples for each different mic, thus resulting in a perfect 'image'?
 
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kimarnesen

Senior Member
I am also interested in trying out the Lite version during this sale period. But only if I can just pay the difference then to go up to the full or full/all mics while the sale is still on if I like the sound/playability. Have been burnt as well too many times with Kontakt piano libraries which always seem to fall short in some aspect.
Same here. It wouldn't make much sense to end up having the light + full version.
 
Here's some fiddling with the full version, 36 layers, round robin, 414 default mics, no verb, no additional fx. Shows a bit of the dynamics, high and low stuff, wide open chords etc. It's a nice piano, very rich sounding. I love it on mp stuff, great soft low and high end, and thunderous clear lows when pushed. It's a very familiar Steiny sound, but done in a satisfying, intimate way (with the default mics anyway).

[AUDIOPLUS=https://vi-control.net/community/attachments/embertone-1955-steiny-quickshot-mp3.13974/][/AUDIOPLUS]
 

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dgrace

Donny Grace
M
So in terms of @dgrace's question:
On their page, it says only "+Full Mic Collection". Means (in terms of your numbering scheme) this:
View attachment 13971
Which also makes sense, since 5 additional mic positions is 75$, what is nearly exactly the price difference between 2. and 3.
It´s a bit confusing, but only the option 3. shows the early bird discount in the cart, the other ones need to the "Checkout" as it says in the head line...
Main reason I questioned it is that I'd like to purchase the *whole* thing and want to make sure I am getting that before I go to Checkout. The terminology is a little ambiguous. The "Lite" version is well defined. But there's not anything truly labeled as the "FULL VERSION". The only *Full" labeling is the "Full Mic Collection". So one could also interpret that the "FULL VERSION" would be owning *ALL* 6 mic positions, which was the way I first read it thinking maybe the "Additional Mic Positions" meant there are even more mic positions available besides the 6. So I just find the terminology a little ambiguous. Again, I would just like to know for a fact what to purchase to get the whole shooting match since there seems to be a savings by doing so. That seems to be what you're labeling as Option [3]. Just want to make sure.
 

bsntn99

New Member
Does anybody know if this is true 36 sustain layers? A lot of times developers will lump all the layers; pedal, no pedal, and release into one bucket to claim a higher layer count. So a 36 layer library may end up being only 12 layers for each group.
 

rottoy

Plebeian
Does anybody know if this is true 36 sustain layers? A lot of times developers will lump all the layers; pedal, no pedal, and release into one bucket to claim a higher layer count. So a 36 layer library may end up being only 12 layers for each group.
The lite version definitely have 12 dedicated layers for both pedal on and pedal off.
I'd assume the full version follows in a similar vein with their 36.
 

dgrace

Donny Grace
Does anybody know if this is true 36 sustain layers? A lot of times developers will lump all the layers; pedal, no pedal, and release into one bucket to claim a higher layer count. So a 36 layer library may end up being only 12 layers for each group.
The panel controls for "VELOCITIES" along the "MODE" toggle for "normal" (which I would take to be sustained or long) and "staccato" suggests there are 36 for each, and I would presume that for each mic position. But clarification on this would also be good.
 
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