The largest sampled piano to date


The largest sampled piano out there! Recently out.

31 pedal up, 31 pedal down, 31 release samples PER NOTE chromatically sampled. That means 93 samples per note. Multiply that by 88 keys in a keyboard, you get 8184 sampled notes in this giant sampled piano.

It's got a nice name - TBO (The Big One), by Sampletekk.

It is a closed miked Yamaha C7.
For those unfamiliar with Sampletekk, the piano samples are actually used in Clavia Nord. They have used the White Grand and the Rain Piano. TBO will be out soon in their keyboards. Of course, since Nord is RAM based, the samples are all shortened version. Not possible to hold gigabytes of samples in hardware - at least not yet.
More and more softsynth versions of real instruments are coming out....and they are beginning to specialise on one instrument only, like piano or violin, etc....

For piano there are several others too the ones that i've known so far are:

-Synthogy's Ivory (for mac only)
Started by 2 ex-employees of Kurzweil keyboards. If you like the piano sounds from Jordan Rudess, you most probably like the sound of this too. PC version in the works

There are many versions of this piano by diff companies. The most notable one being PMI. Check out PMI's website for other pianos that they sampled.

-Native Instruments Akoustik Piano
Latest product by NI. I've always been impressed by the technology NI put out. This should be interesting

Steinberg's The Grand
One of the first to come out i think

There are several more....but the above are what i think are the more popular ones. Good if you've been longing to own a piano but cant afford the price or physical space for one lol. Cheez, do you know of any local dealers of the above mentioned softwares?
Need to differentiate between softsynths and softsamplers. Most acoustic instruments are softsamplers. The best out there are still PMI (as you pointed out) and sampletekk. They have been producing piano samples since ancient times and therefore more experience in it. NI, Steinberg etc are the upcoming potential - the late starters. CPU usage may be more taxing since they are individual VSTis as compared to the others that run on a separate softsampler. No problem if running only one VSTi piano, but when you start to have several plug-ins, you run into CPU and memory problems.

Good piano samples does not just depend on the number of samples/note but also the way the piano is recorded and the post-production programming. That's why people like Michel Post of PMI and Worra of Sampletekk are great in producing great sounding pianos - they specialises mainly in piano sampling.

There are others like Artvista which made a big impact when they first came out with the Malmsjo Grand - the darker version. They certainly rocked the piano sampling industry. That was a number of years ago. Now we get even more sample/note and Artvista slowly faded away to PMI and Sampletekk, the latter also sampled a Malmsjo White Grand - this time the brighter version for jazz and pop. It will be interesting to see where piano sampling heads.

As for where to purchase, the best way is online. I've asked many places who told me that to bring in samples are not worth it since the market is very small in Singapore. If they bring in samples, they cannot compete with the online stores which sell them at relatively low price. But you need to know that PMI, sampletekk etc need Gigastudio, Kontakt or Halion to run; unlike Ivory, NI's AP and the Grand 2 which are VSTis and run as plug-ins.