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Topic: Best preset for live band?

Hi Everybody, I'm sure this has already been discussed, but I couldn't find the topic from the search field.
So, what is your favorite piano sound (and preset) for a live rock/power ballad band situation? One that will blend nicely with the rest of the band, but will keep its tone.
I started with the Grand Grotrian, which I like for its tone, but it wasn't coming out well in the live mix. So I switched to the K2 3 Mics, and it was a bit better, but still not right (it might depend on the venues too). So far, the best (although I haven't tried them all) seems to be the D4 3 Mics. Next I'm going to try to YC5 and the Blüthner.
Any suggestion? Thanks.

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Re: Best preset for live band?

Hi

You ask for suggestion. Try to listen to J.P. Rykiel - So long California. You find it from Modartt home page. Choose Listen, Listen by instrument, Rock Piano YC5 and first song in the list (So long California). It is 25 years since I played live with  own orchestra in TV (Roland U-20), but YC5 would be my choise today. We have different tastes in sound and music, so this is only one suggestion of maybe hundred. But remember, that the loudspeakers are often the weakest link in the system (as I have said before). Well, just trying to help.

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Re: Best preset for live band?

My suggestion is to spend most of your attention initially on calibrating your amplification and speaker system, not jumping among the Pianoteq models and presets. I think you will find that the challenging part for reproducing acoustic piano sources (like Pianoteq) at high volumes is not the sound source, but is instead the power and fidelity of the amplification and speaker system. Sources that sound accurate and convincing on headphones or monitor speakers at "acoustic" levels often require much EQ at higher volumes, if the aim is to sound like acoustic piano. You can certainly pick a bright piano model, or bias your keyboard velocity curve towards the fff timbres, to cut through in a mix, but the selection of presets and models won't matter much in your context, IMO. My preference for jazz piano live performance through speakers is to use a simple preset without complex mic configurations or reverb, because this richness of ambience is added by your room and may just muddy your sound if added artificially. I use the Model B Player preset without reverb, but any of the models played "clean" would probably work for your application. An alternative to consider is to try EP models (Rhodes, Wurli, etc), which scale up to high volumes without as much apparent coloration as the APs.

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Re: Best preset for live band?

Whichever piano model you try, I would suggest DEcreasing the dynamic range slider to only between 10 to 20dB.  In this way, the amplifier will not have to work as hard, and you will be able to play easier on the keys.  Make final level adjustments with your amplifier or channel strip volume in the mixer.  Yes, this logic seems to run counter to what one might believe, but just try it!

Cheers,

Joe

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Re: Best preset for live band?

Thank you, TimN. The problem is that I never use the same ampli/speaker system, as we tour in all sort of theaters and casinos, and we use whatever is in these venues. So, I need my source sound to work regardless of the venue, blending but being distinctive on a live performance.
As far as using EP models, it's not like I can just replace an AP sound with an EP. There are certain songs that are meant to be played on an AP, and I can't just replace it with an EP, it would change the "mood of the song". Thank you for your input, though, appreciated! :-)

TimN wrote:

My suggestion is to spend most of your attention initially on calibrating your amplification and speaker system, not jumping among the Pianoteq models and presets. I think you will find that the challenging part for reproducing acoustic piano sources (like Pianoteq) at high volumes is not the sound source, but is instead the power and fidelity of the amplification and speaker system. Sources that sound accurate and convincing on headphones or monitor speakers at "acoustic" levels often require much EQ at higher volumes, if the aim is to sound like acoustic piano. You can certainly pick a bright piano model, or bias your keyboard velocity curve towards the fff timbres, to cut through in a mix, but the selection of presets and models won't matter much in your context, IMO. My preference for jazz piano live performance through speakers is to use a simple preset without complex mic configurations or reverb, because this richness of ambience is added by your room and may just muddy your sound if added artificially. I use the Model B Player preset without reverb, but any of the models played "clean" would probably work for your application. An alternative to consider is to try EP models (Rhodes, Wurli, etc), which scale up to high volumes without as much apparent coloration as the APs.

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Re: Best preset for live band?

Hi jcfelice88keys, that sounds strange, but I'll give it a try. Thank you!

jcfelice88keys wrote:

Whichever piano model you try, I would suggest DEcreasing the dynamic range slider to only between 10 to 20dB.  In this way, the amplifier will not have to work as hard, and you will be able to play easier on the keys.  Make final level adjustments with your amplifier or channel strip volume in the mixer.  Yes, this logic seems to run counter to what one might believe, but just try it!

Cheers,

Joe

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Re: Best preset for live band?

Mikkius wrote:

Hi jcfelice88keys, that sounds strange, but I'll give it a try. Thank you!

jcfelice88keys wrote:

Whichever piano model you try, I would suggest DEcreasing the dynamic range slider to only between 10 to 20dB.  In this way, the amplifier will not have to work as hard, and you will be able to play easier on the keys.  Make final level adjustments with your amplifier or channel strip volume in the mixer.  Yes, this logic seems to run counter to what one might believe, but just try it!

I'd do this for rock/blues/country, but I'm not sure that I'd do this for a small jazz combo or classical music.

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Re: Best preset for live band?

I need it for rock/power ballads.

fubarable wrote:
Mikkius wrote:

Hi jcfelice88keys, that sounds strange, but I'll give it a try. Thank you!

jcfelice88keys wrote:

Whichever piano model you try, I would suggest DEcreasing the dynamic range slider to only between 10 to 20dB.  In this way, the amplifier will not have to work as hard, and you will be able to play easier on the keys.  Make final level adjustments with your amplifier or channel strip volume in the mixer.  Yes, this logic seems to run counter to what one might believe, but just try it!

I'd do this for rock/blues/country, but I'm not sure that I'd do this for a small jazz combo or classical music.

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Re: Best preset for live band?

I just finished an extensive test of all the acoustic pianos I have (Grotrian, Blüthner, K2, Grand D and YC5) and I selected my favorites, which are: YC5 Close Mic, YC5 Mix Recording, Blüthner Player, K2 3 Mics, and K2 Under Lid. This last one, so far, is my favorite, fighting with YC5 Mix Recording!

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Re: Best preset for live band?

fubarable wrote:

<...>
I'd do this for rock/blues/country, but I'm not sure that I'd do this for a small jazz combo or classical music.

I completely concur with you that I would not do this for classical or even a small jazz combo.  The original thread asked for suggestions regarding a  "live rock/power ballad band situation"; it was for this application that my original reply was intended to address.

Cheers,

Joe

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Re: Best preset for live band?

Some people like using monophonic with Ptq in live band. Maybe it work better regardless of venue and speakersystems. Have not tried it myself though.

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Re: Best preset for live band?

Mikkius wrote:

I just finished an extensive test of all the acoustic pianos I have (Grotrian, Blüthner, K2, Grand D and YC5) and I selected my favorites, which are: YC5 Close Mic, YC5 Mix Recording, Blüthner Player, K2 3 Mics, and K2 Under Lid. This last one, so far, is my favorite, fighting with YC5 Mix Recording!

The YC5 seems to be the less known Pianoteq model.
I remember a demo that I had found on youtube, and it sounds pretty good for that kind of music.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnXzgNqPf_c

Last edited by stamkorg (11-06-2017 14:12)