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Hal Leonard Books releases The Official Guide to Steinway Pianos

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The Official Guide to Steinway Pianos

Hal Leonard Books has released The Official Guide to Steinway Pianos, a book by Roy F. Kehl and David R. Kirkland.

For the first time, 16 decades of Steinway piano making has been captured between two covers

An essential reference for piano technicians worldwide in identifying Steinway pianos, The Official Guide to Steinway Pianos (Amadeus Press; Sept. 6, 2011; $50) encompasses, for the first time, reference material and details from 16 decades of Steinway piano making in New York.

Thirty years of research and compilation by authors Roy F. Kehl and David R. Kirkland bring to light with thorough precision the production history of Steinway pianos. A “family tree” of Steinway production history provides in-depth, complete historical listings of all models produced and their characteristic details, including:

  • First and last serial numbers and production dates
  • Individual scale studies for major models
  • Highlights of important changes and events in Steinway piano production by serial number and date
  • A gallery of Steinway decalcomania
  • A table of Steinway patents
  • Tables of historic Steinway steel wire sizes

The Official Guide to Steinway Pianos is an indispensable tool for piano technicians and dealers who need to determine the relationship of a particular Steinway piano within the historical framework of the company’s overall production, as well as a means to help identify, establish the provenance of, and verify and preserve the originality of any given Steinway piano.

Through compilation of pinpoint information, The Official Guide to Steinway Pianos offers an accurate and fascinating résumé of Steinway & Sons’ ongoing production history.

The Official Guide to Steinway Pianos is available to purchase for $50 USD.

More information: Hal Leonard Books

Time+Space announces free iLok with Synthogy Ivory II pianos

Time+Space Synthogy Ivory II free iLok

Time+Space has announced a limited time offer for Synthogy Ivory II pianos.

“It ticks all the boxes: sound quality, playability, flexibility. And then it ticks a few more: reliability, efficiency, ease of use. This is industry standard, production-ready software that´s a joy to have around. There´s little else to say. Just go and play it…” – Sound on Sound

It’s been almost a year since Ivory II was unleashed onto the world with its powerful new engine delivering an unprecedented level of realism. With the introduction of Harmonic Resonance Modeling for true sympathetic string vibration, plus expanded velocity levels and numerous user requested features such as half pedalling, lid position, pedal noise and tuning tables, Ivory II has become the industry standard in piano software.

Synthogy Ivory II pianos

  • Grand Pianos – Features over 77Gb of stunning, Acoustic Grand Piano sampled instruments including: Bösendorfer 290 Imperial Grand, German Steinway D 9’ Concert Grand and Yamaha C7 Grand.
  • Italian Grand – Over 28Gb of world-class samples featuring a Premium 10 foot, Italian made Concert Grand renowned for its expressive dynamics and full-bodied character.
  • Upright Pianos – Includes four upright pianos; Modern upright (Yamaha U5), Vintage Upright (1914 A.M. Hume), Honky Tonk Barrom upright (1915 Packard) and an early 1900s Tack Piano.

Ivory II pianos require an iLok key to run and until 31st August, Time+Space will send you one for free when you buy any full version Ivory II title, saving you £37.95 GBP (offer excludes upgrades).

More information: Time+Space

Better Music Distribution announces Sound Magic distribution in US

Better Music Distribution Sound Magic

Better Music Distribution has announced it is now distributing instrument plugins from Sound Magic.

Better Music Distribution is very pleased to announce the partnership with Sound Magic for the US market. Two brand new pianos have been recently released and are now available through Better Music Distribution in the USA.

Sound Magic instruments

  • Imperial Grand Piano – The Imperial Grand virtual instrument piano starts with a famous dark, rich Bösendorfer style of sound, the first modeled Bösendorfer 290SE with 97 Keys.
  • Ruby Piano – Ruby Piano captures the mellow sustain and beautiful tones of a Yamaha C7 built in 1972, which has original ivory keys, and represents its unique timbral quality through Sound Magic ‘s NEO Hybrid Modeling Engine.
  • BlueStone Piano – The BlueStone Piano virtual instrument starts with the robust Steinway sound, utilizing these powerful harmonics to create the authenticity and complexity that has long been a standard in concert halls around the world.
  • Supreme Piano 2 – The Supreme Piano 2 virtual piano collection includes four world’s most stunning and finest grand pianos. A true piano legend.

More information: Better Music Distribution

Sound Magic releases BlueStone Piano virtual piano instrument

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Sound Magic BlueStone Piano

Sound Magic has released BlueStone Piano, a virtual piano instrument for Windows.

BlueStone Piano starts with the robust Steinway sound, utilizing these powerful harmonics to create the unsurpassed authenticity and complexity that has long been a standard in concert halls around the world.

BlueStone Piano has successfully captured the highly resonant wooden body flavor of a vintage Steinway build in 1927 and also managed to represents its unique singing tone through Sympathetic Resonance and soundboard resonant. It is a very emotional piano with great dynamic.

BlueStone Piano features

  • BlueStone Piano gives you absolute control over every aspect of a piano. You can adjust hammer actions, microphone positions, sympathetic resonances, dynamics and more. You can even design your own piano.
  • HD Velocity Layer supports up to 65,536 Velocity Layers.
  • Multi-microphone positions enable users to mix between different microphone positions and create new sounds that easily fit into a mix.
  • Real Piano Legato make the legato passage so real with a sustaining tone.
  • Meticulous Dynamic Response controls enable users to adjust the dynamics of the piano, change the keyboard response, and achieve both realism and playability at the same time.
  • New! Our 264-string Sympathetic Resonance System adds beautiful harmonies to both pedal up and pedal down notes.
  • BlueStone Piano is able to detect repeated notes and activate True Staccato Mode which precisely reproduces staccato notes.
  • Built-in professional Reverb Engine simulates resonances with environment and soundboard, adding extra realism to the sound.
  • Actual modeling and soft pedal samples vividly present the sound of three kinds of pedals.
  • Faster load times. Smaller hard drive footprint, less memory and less CPU usage.

BlueStone Piano is available as a VST instrument plugin for Windows, priced at 99 EUR (includes 50 EUR worth of add-ons).

More information: Sound Magic / BlueStone Piano

Imperfect Samples releases Steinway Walnut Concert Grand

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Imperfect Samples has released the Steinway Walnut Concert Grand, a virtual piano instrument library.

Imperfect Samples Steinway Walnut Concert Grand

Imperfect Samples’ Steinway & Sons 1908 Walnut Concert Grand is a World Class Concert Grand piano with a rich, musical character. The tone of this concert grand is highly expressive, with a full-bodied timbre. Standing at 9 feet long, this imposing grand piano is suitable for situations where an emotive and dynamic, full grand piano sound is required.

Over a century old, the Steinway 1908 Walnut Concert Grand has an extremely resonant wooden body, providing a sought after warm and pleasing sound. Click here to watch videos

This grand piano library has been sampled extensively, to provide versatility for use in almost all concievable genres of music. Click here for a list of suggested genres for each microphone perspective.

Steinway 1908 Walnut Concert Grand features

  • Over 54GB, 24 bit audio fidelity.
  • 4 Unique Microphone Perspectives (Player, Close, Room, Dry).
  • Piano FX: Lid sounds, human fingers, pedals, wood knocks, more…
  • Up to 100 layers spread across 4 perspectives.
  • TrueStaccato™
  • TrueCrotchet™
  • Sympathetic Resonance*
  • Half-pedalling*
  • Custom Velocity Mapping*
  • On the fly sample loading & real-time FX controls*
  • Rich, organic sound.
  • Realistic.

* available for full Retail Kontakt 4.2 or higher only.

Steinway Walnut Concert Grand is available in Kontakt, EXS24 and VST/AU plug-in formats for Windows and Mac, starting at £39.99 GBP.

More information: Imperfect Samples / Steinway Walnut Grand

Time+Space Easter Bank Special, 20% off “real” instruments & sounds

Time+Space Easter Bank Special

Time+Space has announced a limited time Easter Bank promotion, offering 20% off ‘real’ instruments and sounds.

This Easter Bank holiday weekend we´re going to back to basics with discounts across a range of virtual instruments and sample libraries that are geared specifically towards real instruments – the authentic sounds of live drums, pianos, guitars, brass, strings and so on.

There are 16 titles to choose from including Toontrack’s Superior Drummer 2.0, Vir2′s Electri6ity, Garritan’s Steinway Basic and Big Fish Audio’s Funk Soul Horns to name just a few…

Offers end midnight on Monday 25th April, 2011.

More information: Time+Space

Imperfect Samples announces Steinway Walnut Concert Grand

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Imperfect Samples Steinway Walnut Concert Grand

Imperfect Samples has announced the Steinway Walnut Concert Grand, a new sampled piano instrument.

Totalling over 54GB, Imperfect Samples’ Steinway & Sons 1908 Walnut Concert Grand has up to 100 layers spread across 4 microphone perspectives (up to 25 layers in each perspective). This is a world class concert grand piano with a rich, musical character. The tone of this concert grand is expressive, with a full-bodied timbre.

Featuring Imperfect Samples’ new IS Advanced Engine, the Steinway Walnut Concert Grand includes advanced sympathetic resonance, half-pedaling, true staccato articulations, true crotchet articulations, polyphony controls, human performance FX, randomizer, piano FX controls, custom velocity mapping, on-the-fly sample loading and more..

Painstakingly recorded imperfectly, as with all Imperfect Samples’ libraries, the emphasis has been placed on achieving a hyper-real and convincing sampled instrument, with performance sounds.

The Steinway Walnut Concert Grand will be available soon, in Kontakt, EXS24, and plugin formats (VST/AU).

More information: Imperfect Samples

Cakewalk introduces Sound Center Expansion Packs

Cakewalk has announced the release of several Sound Center Expansion Packs, sound libraries for the Cakewalk Sound Center.

Digital Sound Factory has created a library of high-quality expansion packs for Cakewalk Sound Center (included in SONAR X1, Music Creator 5, and Production Plus Pack 3). To celebrate the release of these packs, we are offering a special introductory of price of only $19.95/£14.95/€19.95 for each pack (regularly $29.95/£24.95/€29.95).

Cakewalk Sound Center Expansion Packs

Sound Center Expansion Packs features

  • Steinway Grand Piano – The Steinway Grand is one of the most classic grand pianos ever produced. Built with the best materials acquired, Steinway pianos create a rich full sound like none others. This beautiful Steinway Model L includes multiple layers matched for the ultimate realism. Each sample was reviewed, and the best were assembled to create this grand piano for Cakewalk’s Sound Center. As a result of this process, this natural sounding piano will work in any track mix. (10 Programs).
  • Vintage Keyboards – Vintage Keyboards delivers the keyboard sounds that defined popular music in the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s including the Hammond B-3 organ, Rhodes and Wurlitzer EP to legendary analog and digital synthesizers like the ARP 2600 and CP70, Vintage Keyboards gives you an all-in-one, no-compromise collection of over 30 classic keyboards meticulously sampled from the finest vintage instruments available. (220 Programs).
  • World Instruments – World Instruments represents an array of strings, winds, and percussion instruments from around the globe. African melodic and percussion, Chinese and India winds, Russian strings, and steel percussion instruments will color musical compositions with old world harmonic textures. This collection brings inspiring elements that weave the old world into the new world. (109 Programs).

More information: Cakewalk