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Topic: New member considering the purchase of my first VSTi Piano-Some questions please

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  1. #1

    New member considering the purchase of my first VSTi Piano-Some questions please

    This is my first post to this group. I'm hoping that this particular forum would be the place to ask. I'm fairly new to VSTi pianos since, until recently, I have had access to a Steinway Grand and a Yamaha C7 and the mics to get the job done. These instruments are in two separate places, neither of which is my studio and the situation has become increasingly difficult to deal with.

    I am a studio owner/engineer, not a professional keyboardist. I need a piano here that I can use as both a real time, standalone instrument to record audio from one DAW to another and also to use as a VSTi to process midi data within Cubase SX 3x. I have an MAudio Prostation 88 controller but I am considering adding another one with fully weighted keys, perhaps a Fatar or PC88 controller.

    I have been looking really hard for an *extremely realistic* VSTi piano now that I have the system to handle it (or at least I think I do). The only thing that might screw the pooch is the drive that I'm streaming samples *from*. Right now that's a 400 gig 7200RPM Seagate Barracuda ATA 133 drive. Seems fast enough when I'm streaming samples from BFD. I'm able to work at 64k buffers with ease using BFD. I want to be able to work at 64k buffers if possible with a piano in standalone mode if this is to be used for tracking directly to an audio recorder (I have a separate workstation that is *audio only* and in this scenario, I would be tracking directly from the DAW hosting the piano, to the DAW hosting the audio program). I suppose I could live with 128-256k, but my session players are pretty picky about this, and this is certainly understandable. I'm a guitrist and I hate the latency that is induced by using modellers like the POD......anyway.....to return to the subject....

    The *Ivory* VSTi looks (and the demo's sound) beutiful but I'm wondering if I've got the disk streaming to handle it with a 7200 RPM ATA drive as opposed to using SATA RAID 0. Is anyone here using Ivory with a dedicated ATA 133 7200RPM hard drive for samples?

    I did a little work with a Nashville keyboard player recently who was using the East West Bosendorfer 290 with his Cubase rig. I sent him a rough and he recorded the keyboard parts in Cubase and returned them to me as .wav files. This Bosendorfer 290 VSTi sounded very nice. Anyone here using it or had any experience with it and the system demands it creates?

    My current system is as follows:

    Win XP SP1a with DX9 installed (ACPI enabled) - totally optomized for audio-no nonessential functions running.

    ASUS A8V-Deluxe mobo (FW1394, Serial, Parallel and VIA and Promise IDE and SATA RAID controllers disabled)

    CPU - AMD 64 4200 X 2 (Clocking 2300 MHZ per core)

    RAM-4G Corsair XMS PC 3200 CAS2.

    Matrox G450 AGP

    System Drive - ATA 133 80G Western Digital 8MB cache
    Audio Drive - ATA 133 Maxtor 160 G
    Sample drive- ATA 133 400G Seagate Barracuda *MB cache
    Backup drive-ATA 133 250G Western Digital in removable drive caddy in USB 2.0 external case

    Magma 32 bit/13 slot (host card in PCI slot #4)
    2 x RME HDSP 9652 PCI
    1 x RME Multiface PCI
    4 x UAD-1's (v4.1)

    Marvel 10x1000 LAN controller enabled as this machine is networked to two other workstations.

    Audio engine is Cubase SX v3.1.1.944.

    System is extremely fast and stable at this point.

    I'm sorry for taking up so much bandwidth here. Especially with my first post.

    Thanks in advance for any feedback on these two or any other sampled pianos. I just don't have the resources right now to build yet another dedicated computer for Giga.............or the space and $$$ for a *real* piano.

    __________________
    Doug Joyce
    Animix Productions
    Durango, CO

  2. #2

    Re: New member considering the purchase of my first VSTi Piano-Some questions please

    Michael Post's B290 is a very nice classical sounding piano. The Old Lady by Michael is a beautiful steniway D that combined with Kornel mezo's script is simply awesome. Other pianos I like are vintaudio's yamaha c7 and sampletekk's white grand.

    Your system should be able to handle. any of these. Listen to the demos and pick the one you like the best.

  3. #3

    Re: New member considering the purchase of my first VSTi Piano-Some questions please

    Quote Originally Posted by higain_guitar
    Michael Post's B290 is a very nice classical sounding piano. The Old Lady by Michael is a beautiful steniway D that combined with Kornel mezo's script is simply awesome. Other pianos I like are vintaudio's yamaha c7 and sampletekk's white grand.

    Your system should be able to handle. any of these. Listen to the demos and pick the one you like the best.
    Thank you,

    I did listen to Michael's clips and Ivory won the toss . Shame I couldn't find it for sale on his site. I needed to order it two days ago and couldn't reach anyone there to double check so I had to order elsewhere. His efforts won't go unappreciated though. I'll be buying *more stuff*. There's always *more stuff* to buy.


  4. #4

    Re: New member considering the purchase of my first VSTi Piano-Some questions please

    Remember that if you're wanting a VSTI, then anything that loads into Kontakt, which can load as a VSTI, is open to you. In other words, all of the current pianos that are available for Kontakt or can be converted to Kontakt, could be used. So there's no reason to limit yourself to just the dedicated piano vsti's.

  5. #5

    Re: New member considering the purchase of my first VSTi Piano-Some questions please

    Although I don't own it, I have to agree with that the B290 is a great sounding thing. But there has been times where we've decided that it's not really blending in all the way - it can actually be just a bit too rich for some sound palettes. From that point of view, I've always found use for EWs old Steinway B - which I do own. IMO, EWs Steinway never sticks out - for good or bad - while at the same time providing a very classic, neutral and great sounding piano for most types of use. I still think of it as the GM Deluxe of sampled pianos.
    Kid: When I become an adult I wanna be a musician.
    Parent: Son, you cannot become both.

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