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Pianoteq Trial Findings

Seasharp

Member
Spent the last 2 days playing through all the Pianos in the Pianoteq trial version. I’m impressed by the quality and especially liked the Beckstein. Actually many are enjoyable to play and sound great. However in a direct comparison with Ivory the Pianoteq Steinway fall a little short especially in the low end. Still I might get the Stage version for the Beckstein and one other. What has your experience been with this product?
 

Nick Batzdorf

Moderator
Moderator
My favorite instruments in it are the Rhodes and harpsichord.

Also the harp and vibes, but I only have the demos.
 

tack

Damned Dirty Ape
What has your experience been with this product?
Even with all the more recent models, I still haven't found one I like nearly as much as the Bluethner. And even with the Bluethner I can find much to criticize about the sound relative to sampled pianos.

But how it plays. Pianoteq just can't be beaten for playability in the digital world.
 
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Seasharp

Seasharp

Member
Even with all the more recent models, I still haven't found one I like nearly as much as the Bluethner. And even with the Bluethner I can find much to criticize about the sound relative to sampled pianos.

But how it plays. Pianoteq just can't be beaten for playability in the digital world.

I agree. Pianoteq pianos are a joy to play even in the trial version.
 

Hasici

New Member
I particularly don't care much for the PT sound, but the easiness and immediacy of playing modeled instrument is without question and this is where it really shines. Still 60GB sampled piano would give much better character of that particular piano but things still could be iffy for high performance players.
 

jonnybutter

Active Member
I recently got the version 6 Steinway. As usual, fantastic playability, but as mentioned upthread - that low end! :shocked: At high velocity it sounds something like a CP-70. Pianoteq are getting better and better, but I kind of object to how expensive it is and how when you go up a level, you don't get your old pianos (if you have version 5 pianos, you have to buy them all again in version 6). And that low end just is not ok. I have the v 5 Bluethner and I agree it is probably the best overall. I use that and all pianoteq pianos for practicing classical piano. But they usually don't make it into production.
 

ramirogomez

Pianist, singer, producer
I recently made a Pianoteq 6 video review, it is in spanish, but you can check it out if you want :)

Please let me know what you think!
 

chimuelo

Star Of Stage & Screen
I particularly don't care much for the PT sound, but the easiness and immediacy of playing modeled instrument is without question and this is where it really shines. Still 60GB sampled piano would give much better character of that particular piano but things still could be iffy for high performance players.
I mix PianoTeq with Keyscape and not only get a better editable sound but better dynamics.
I do this with everything though.
Never heard a sampled instrument or PhysMod I thought didnt need more character except Chris Hein Horns Brass.
Theyre right in your face the first time you play them.
Not the usual compression Im tormented by.
 

CGR

Pianist, Composer & Arranger
. . . (if you have version 5 pianos, you have to buy them all again in version 6) . . .
No that's incorrect. The models are tweaked and improved with each update of the Pianoteq engine, but you only need to purchase the piano models once.
 

jonnybutter

Active Member
No that's incorrect. The models are tweaked and improved with each update of the Pianoteq engine, but you only need to purchase the piano models once.

Hmm, everything I purchased full versions of in 5 shows up as only demos in 6. I will investigate - maybe there's a way I can update them?
 

ProfoundSilence

Senior Member
I think you really need to a.) have the better versions and b.) have the time/energy to tweak things(and also your ears)

Personally, I've definitely decided that I wont personally use it until I get it upgraded to the pro level, because experimenting with each setting changes the tone quite a bit, and I can instantly tell that I'd 100% rather do this to each note individually. Mainly because a setting on one note might sound excellent, but its to far up or down for the next note. It's obviously much more apparent between the different registers ofcourse - but I think this is key to getting the correct tone/color across the board. And without pianoteq I'm 100% uninspired to play a piano patch. Originally I only investigated it for a friend who is a pianist, who has no experience in the virtual instrument domain - but it certainly broke me. Partial pedaling is singlehandedly the most important feature to me now, because there are plenty of ways to tweak sonic qualities - but it's something that you can't take "out" of samples, and is inherently part of phrasing
 

poetd

Active Member
- that low end! :shocked:
Standard/Pro are definitely required so that you can tweak things.
I found a lot of the stock sounds/settings, especially in the older pianos like the Steinway D, are a little too new/plastic sounding.
You can quite easily change/fix that though by lowering things like Hammer Hardness and the changing the soundboard settings.
It's almost like the strings are perfect, which of course never happens in the real world.

Thankfully there are loads of tools/settings included that let you add imperfections.

One of my favourites is to replace the Una Corda Pedal with a Celeste one (right-click pedal) which can really soften up those hard tones.
 

ProfoundSilence

Senior Member
although I'd like to manually tweak a lot stuff down the road, I went ahead and messed with it a little. This is using 1 mic setup(which I used pretty much just an ORTF about head level with the um87 cardiods)

This is using the Steinway D, where I modified a few things(like unison width, harmmer harness, string point, sound pedal amount ect.

I'm using a slightly higher dynamic curve than I'd normally use, a little extra on the soundboard impedance.

I custom drew *some* volume differences across the key range - but it's just a rough go at it.

I have 3 sends.

there's an instance of pro-Q3 with 3 bands(high shelf, low shelf, and 1 actual band) just to kind of sculpt the sound a little. This is right on the VI track.

Send 1 is my "clean" channel - which is just an instance of Pro-MB to add some distance/control to the sound.

Send 2 is S1 Stereo to add some width before it hits an instance of SP2016 setup fully front with about a 3.8 second tail(similar to teldex) This is to add more of a "room"

Send 3 is an instance of Seventh Heaven Professional - using the Berliner hall, with some general tweaks.

but the send levels are pretty much the clean + a hint of the other two. its +4.3 db on my clean channel, -10.5 db on my sp2016 send, and -9 db on my 7th heaven send.

This is just improv, hopefully showing the many different dynamics/contrast between parts as I can, considering I'm using an expressive pedal for my mute pedal controller - and I'm in general not a pianist.
 

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ProfoundSilence

Senior Member
and since I'm such a trash pianist, In good fashion I found midi of my current favorite piano piece.

and this uses looks like continuous pedaling for the sustain, although I don't think this person is using a continuous for the mute pedal, nevertheless - it's an incredibly dynamic piece.

Again, I'd like to be able to tweak a lot of things differently per range like the pro version. Especially stuff like the unison -
 

Attachments

Studio E

Eric Watkins
I absolutely love my Pianoteq pianos, of which I think I have maybe 5 or 6. I guess I don't hear the huge differences people talk about. I grew up playing a real piano, and I just love these. Not all are right for every situation of course, but in general, I never pull one up and feel like it doesn't sound like a piano and a great one at that. Maybe I'm a simpleton but having the playability of the Pianoteq pianos actually inspired me to start playing more. I just used one of the pianos in a film score and no one ever gave me feedback questioning the authenticity of the piano. I think I must have 20 sampled pianos, peaking with the HZ Piano, and if I had to have just one, Pianoteq would be it.
 

jonnybutter

Active Member
Standard/Pro are definitely required so that you can tweak things.
I found a lot of the stock sounds/settings, especially in the older pianos like the Steinway D, are a little too new/plastic sounding.
You can quite easily change/fix that though by lowering things like Hammer Hardness and the changing the soundboard settings.
It's almost like the strings are perfect, which of course never happens in the real world.

Thankfully there are loads of tools/settings included that let you add imperfections.

One of my favourites is to replace the Una Corda Pedal with a Celeste one (right-click pedal) which can really soften up those hard tones.

Interesting! It seems strange that you wouldn't have a playable piano in the first place though. Don't get me wrong - I have a lot of Pianoteq instruments, and use them a lot. They are extremely playable of course, and many of them sound really good - to mention just a few: the electric pianos are great, the clavs are great, the harpsichords are good, the harp is good, the vibes are excellent. And the Bluenther is quite good sounding.

But that Steinway bass range sounds like a cross between a synth and a CP70. It should never sound like that! Why do I have to spend hundreds more just to make that range sound good? Especially when there are so many great sampled pianos out there these days...
 

chimuelo

Star Of Stage & Screen
Its really the only Piano that you can edit for the playback system you use.
On my IEMs everything sounds great, even VST FX.
But over my various stage monitors the wound is different.

24 In ear drivers (12 per side, 3 sets of quads) beats Cones and Tweeters hands down, so I put them through the tests and usually boost rather than attenuate, rare for me but then I can layer on Keyscape which is static. Then fine tune PianoTeq per note or octave and shape the sound to EXACTLY what I want.

My Upright is so good layered that people in the audience usually ask what keyboard can they get to get that sound.
once I go into the Controllers Price, then yhe interface, then the PC then the software, I usually discorage them as soon as I tell them the Physis K4s price.

Love my layered instruments.
 

chimuelo

Star Of Stage & Screen
Interesting! It seems strange that you wouldn't have a playable piano in the first place though. Don't get me wrong - I have a lot of Pianoteq instruments, and use them a lot. They are extremely playable of course, and many of them sound really good - to mention just a few: the electric pianos are great, the clavs are great, the harpsichords are good, the harp is good, the vibes are excellent. And the Bluenther is quite good sounding.

But that Steinway bass range sounds like a cross between a synth and a CP70. It should never sound like that! Why do I have to spend hundreds more just to make that range sound good? Especially when there are so many great sampled pianos out there these days...
Couldnt agree more about the Steinways low end.
It lacks the intial attack you hear when the hammer hits the string on an acoustic piano.
It was that aspect of PianoTeq that caused me to experiment with layering.

Same with their Rhodes Mk 1.
Cantebury Rhodes lacks sustain in certian registers, PTeq Mk1/2 with Cantebury is the Rhodes I love.
 

jonnybutter

Active Member
Couldnt agree more about the Steinways low end.
It lacks the intial attack you hear when the hammer hits the string on an acoustic piano.
It was that aspect of PianoTeq that caused me to experiment with layering.

Same with their Rhodes Mk 1.
Cantebury Rhodes lacks sustain in certian registers, PTeq Mk1/2 with Cantebury is the Rhodes I love.

I like Modartt's Hohner keyboards. They really nailed those I think. Nothing sounds (or looks) as dated as something trying to be 'futuristic'. What would the 'Jetsons' theme song (or some Monkees or Beatles songs or the soundtrack to 'Hair') sound like w/out the Pianet? Once Rhodes and Wurlizers were everywhere the Hohners seemed to vanish. Kudos to Modartt for doing them up.
 
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