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Old 08-04-2017, 12:24 PM
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Default Keystation 61es not working well with Pianos

Just installed Pianos Platinum and have discovered what looks like a weak link in my system. All drivers/programs are installed and up to date. However, it seems my Pianos are not receiving enough velocity signal from my 61es. If I click the key in the Graphic Interface, the note will sound fine, but hitting the same key on my 61es produces a "soft" sound. Only hitting the key as hard as I can creates a sound close to clicking on the Graphic Interface key just below the black keys...

I've tried adjusting the "Velocity" curve in the Player setting, but all that seems to do is make everything louder, not more responsive. I feel I'm missing all the benefits of the "Dynamic" patches in Pianos.

So, I'm thinking, it's an issue with my Keystation... Old maybe? Never really put together to take advantage of newer velocity sensitive programs like Pianos? My Keystation DOES respond somewhat to hitting the keys hard or soft, but not sure how many levels of velocity it actually transmits.

Any thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated. Any recommendations for Keyboards that work really well with EWQL Pianos would also be appreciated.

Thanks!
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Dell XPS 8300, Intel Core i7-2600, 8GB SDRAM, AMD Radeon HD 6670, Windows 7 Home Premium, M-Audio Audiophile USB, M-Audio Keystation 61es; SONAR X3 Producer Edition (64bit); Colossus, Boesendorfer 290, EWQLSO Gold Complete, EWQL Pianos Platinum, EWQL Choirs Platinum, RA, Stormdrum2, Chris Hein Horns Vol1
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Old 08-04-2017, 01:30 PM
tommyrack13 tommyrack13 is offline
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Haven't tried the Keystation, but I do have a Keystudio (shorter scale) that I used to use and I completely recognise this issue with Pianos Platinum and all piano libraries with any sense of dynamics. Same is true with my Nektar Panorama P6.

However, if I feel like a treat, I sometimes bring the Korg SP-250 into the studio and playing with the weighted keys makes a world of difference. To get the best response from libraries like Pianos, you definitely need a controller that feels more like the real thing. Full scale doesn't hurt either.

None of the above are world class controllers, but the SP-250 seems to be a reasonably priced piece of kit that functions pretty well as a standard piano-style controller.

T
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Last edited by tommyrack13; 08-04-2017 at 01:31 PM. Reason: Extra note
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Old 08-04-2017, 02:47 PM
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Thanks for the input, Tom. I had a feeling that this was the case. Shopping for an 88 key weighted now. I will definitely look into the Korg.

Love this forum...all the best.
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Dell XPS 8300, Intel Core i7-2600, 8GB SDRAM, AMD Radeon HD 6670, Windows 7 Home Premium, M-Audio Audiophile USB, M-Audio Keystation 61es; SONAR X3 Producer Edition (64bit); Colossus, Boesendorfer 290, EWQLSO Gold Complete, EWQL Pianos Platinum, EWQL Choirs Platinum, RA, Stormdrum2, Chris Hein Horns Vol1
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Old 08-04-2017, 03:20 PM
John57 John57 is offline
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I had a Keystation 88 but returned it. The velocity curve was real bad especially the black keys which never reach anywhere near 127 on the MIDI velocity scale. Ended up with the StudioLogic SL88 Studio
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Old 08-04-2017, 10:22 PM
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Thank you, John. I'll look into the SL88 as well.
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Old 08-05-2017, 06:39 AM
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I have the Keystation 61es as well, and its very soft compared to my Roland JD-Xi and Akai LPK. Its not just the EWQL Piano, but most velocity sensitive instruments.
I think its works well for "softer music", but for other stuff i use the Roland keyboard.
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Old 08-05-2017, 12:10 PM
jspencer jspencer is offline
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If you want a nice, semi-weighted controller, try a Nektar Impact LX88+. I just replaced by Keystation 88es with this, and it's awesome.
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Old 08-05-2017, 03:47 PM
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Thanks, Morten, Jeremy.
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Old 08-08-2017, 10:22 AM
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UPDATE: After some experimenting, I discovered that my issue wasn't just that the 61es wasn't delivering enough velocity, but that it was delivering UNEVEN velocity on many of the keys... That's why raising the velocity curve in the Player helped with those "soft" keys, but made the other keys too "hot". I've had this relatively cheap controller for over 10 years and it seems that I've "worn it out". I don't know if this is physically possible, not understanding the construction of the "touch sensitive" keyboard, but I'm guessing they do wear out eventually.

In any case I replaced the 61ex with another "cheap" controller... the Nektar Impact GX61...really to see if a new keyboard would give more even results, and it does. So Pianos are working much better for me now... I'm still hoping to purchase a really good 88 Keyboard to use just with Pianos, but another issue I have is not enough space in my small studio to fit one without some major remodeling.

I do wish I understood the physicality of "touch sensitive" keyboards. Is the technology the same for all keyboards, or are some keyboards better than others in sensing velocity levels? Obviously, when using an incredible library like Platinum Pianos, I want to use hardware that's going to utilize all of the benefits of that library, such as "dynamics"...

Thanks all, for taking the time to read and respond.
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Dell XPS 8300, Intel Core i7-2600, 8GB SDRAM, AMD Radeon HD 6670, Windows 7 Home Premium, M-Audio Audiophile USB, M-Audio Keystation 61es; SONAR X3 Producer Edition (64bit); Colossus, Boesendorfer 290, EWQLSO Gold Complete, EWQL Pianos Platinum, EWQL Choirs Platinum, RA, Stormdrum2, Chris Hein Horns Vol1
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Old 08-08-2017, 02:30 PM
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Rob, many controllers out there have options for adjusting the sensitivity (I don't think the M_Audio ES series offeres this, at least my old one didn't), just check out the specs before you decide. I actually have an old Korg Triton Xtreme that I haul out when I want to use weighted keys. The Nektar LX88+, for example, has four sensitivity settings which gives you pretty good control over how you want it. I also heard some good reviews about the Studio Logic controllers, such as the SL88 Grand.

PS- Great to see a fellow live theater composer, and awesome samples on your website! I do a lot of theater work in Calgary, Vancouver and Niagara-on-the-Lake. Love it!
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