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Any suggestions? Seeking to create, save in Live Set a rounder, fuller piano tone.

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As I said in a different topic, I’ve been A/B comparing the CFX in my CP4 with that in the YC61, playing both from the CP4’s keybed. I prefer some elements of the CP4’s SCM AP warmth, both in the CFX and CF3 pianos. I suspect that with some tweaking I can achieve an even better tone from YC61’s AWM2 sampled CFX. Hence my question.

I’m using Debussy’s Arabesque I as my test material. I’m learning this marvelous piece now. It has a variety of textures and dynamics and requires judicious pedaling (many overdo the pedal on this piece in fact, to my ears), hence it makes a good test case.

I found that with the EQ, I can easily get a pleasing tone. But, as we know, there’s no way to save the EQ settings in a Live Set. Also, any EQ I set may be inappropriate for other voices I use (I bought the board for it’s Hammond clone wheel capabilities).

I like what I’m hearing when I play with the filter and envelope generator. Also, by setting the Touch Curve to Wide, I feel I get much better control over dynamics and tone from the CP4 keybed (using the YC61 as tone generator). That said, sometimes it still sounds too much like I’m hitting “steel” when I use a fast strike.

Does anyone have suggestions? Settings you’ve found work well for classical, prog rock or ballads? Guidance as to which controls or settings (especially Envelope and Filter) that produce the most “round” and “warm” tone?

Of course, thanks to Bad Mister for the input he gave in the previous topic!


Posted : 27/01/2021 10:07 am
Bad Mister
Posts: 12303

EQ Settings
These are all going to be personal taste — what YOU personally think/feel sounds good — if you find EQ is fixing your problem, then just continue until you find the sweet spot. EQ is so dependent on the very room you are in currently — it can be a waste of time looking for EQ tips. Say you are trying to overcome a large plate glass window near your speakers, any EQ setting some one suggests will not include compensating for that sonic nightmare. Do you have plush carpet on the floor or hardwood? How close are your speakers to the wall behind them? Where are they located? If you can’t see the tweeters, you can’t hear the tweeters. (Are your tweeters blown? Yikes!)

I could list a hundred things that make EQ tips somewhat hit or miss. Learn to trust your ears and satisfy yourself... in reality, when you think it is right, it is for you (and certainly there will be others who think you're wrong) at the end of the day... set it so YOU like it.

Extra Credit:
Don’t let this hurt your head: but your acoustic piano will sound different when you are playing it versus when you are listening back to it or if it is played by someone else. Try that experiment. Set it so you like it... record yourself or have some one else play it...stand back, listen and compare.
Our perception changes when we become listener. I can remember hundreds of experiences where one customer might be playing a sound, and not like it, until they hear someone else play it. Some one else comes up and plays something, suddenly, there is a shift in opinion. I’ve learned, as musicians, our perception changes based on a lot of fleeting factors - especially when it comes to sounds.

Remember playing clubs? ... what you sound like to yourself on stage, has little to do with how you sound out in the audience. Again depending on the shape, size and surfaces in the environment you sound very different in different corners of the room. Move ten feet and your entire opinion is different.

No one EQ setting will be right for all situations. Optimize it for you - you have to *play*.

Posted : 27/01/2021 2:56 pm
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Topic starter

Thank you Bad Mister for the very insightful comments!

I’m seeking a way to achieve similar results using settings other than EQ, since they aren’t saved in a Live Set.

I’m familiar with EQ’ing to a room. Years ago, I was trained to do this very scientifically using a specialized SPL meter in high end home theaters I built during an 8-year career diversion (first and second order echoes included). With my mixer (a fully digital, tablet-controlled model), I can auto-EQ quite nicely using a pink noise generator and an app that modifies the response to observed levels.

I’m looking for hints as to the best way to a) warm up the tone and b) bring down that aggressive “steel” sound when I’m hitting the key hard and fast, using settings that are saved in Live Set. I understand that I must EQ to the room on top of that.

Thanks again.

Posted : 27/01/2021 3:15 pm
Bad Mister
Posts: 12303

The Master EQ is designed to adjust the instrument to the room acoustics, not so much to fix the program..

Part of the reason I framed my comments with “... if you find EQ is fixing your problem, then...”
what you may be attempting to “fix” may fall under the heading of the character of the instrument (being recreated by the samples).

Piano strings are steel, but when describing the sound you may be expressing the character of the selected piano is very bright or brighter than you desire. (Also avoid speakers with metallic or direction horns).

The S700 has an entirely different character from the CFX... Mellower and less chaotic when struck hard. You cannot turn a CFX into an S700, nor can you turn an S700 into a CFX with EQ, because the fundamental character of the two pianos are that different

Posted : 27/01/2021 7:47 pm

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