Thanks to a good friend on the forum and their generosity, I was able to play with Synthogy's new German D on the Ivory III engine. I now have some initial thoughts that has made me a bit uncomfortable. Before I go there, let me show you my system specs.
Device name Dell Precision 3560
Processor 11th Gen Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-1185G7 @ 3.00GHz 1.80 GHz
Installed RAM 32.0 GB (31.7 GB usable)
System type 64-bit operating system, x64-based processor
I use Windows 11, with RME's Babyface Pro FS, driver 1.246, hardware revision 206. Buffer size 64 samples.
Now, to my over all thoughts.
Part 1: the Good.
The sound. I read in the documentation that this German D was recorded by the same team who did the American Concert D for Ivory II. Interestingly, this Hamburg instrument has a much rounder tone than other Hamburg D's, something I like very much. My favorite microphone positions are the side B and ambient mics.
Accessibility. All values can be browsed and adjusted. Just load the VST 3 plugin into Reaper, then use the up and down arrows to locate the inserted track, then press the letter P to open a dialogue where parameters can be cycled and adjusted using the up and down arrows and Tab key.
Backwards compatibility. My American Concert D under Ivory 2.5 can also work on Ivory III, all be it some features won't be available.
Release and resonance improvements. Finally there's a difference between higher pitched releases and lower pitched releases. The low notes have a fat release on an actual acoustic piano. Though Ivory has come too late on the bandwagon, it's good they have it.
Part 2: the Bad.
Price. This is not a cheap piano. Like I mentioned above, this post won't be possible without this friend's generosity. I do have to say, I was quite surprised and honoured when I read their message yesterday.
Release samples. The release samples don't contain the hall sound. I need to have the ambient control turned on in order to make it sound natural in live playback
Part 3: The Ugly.
CPU crackling. For me, I turn on half pedaling, release samples, all kinds of resonances, soundboard simulation, and that new smooth velocity control. If I turn any of these things off, it would minimize the realism. But even when I have 60 voices when turned on, I can't use the plugin without hearing significant crackling.
Question, do you think I need a more powerful laptop with a big CPU? I thought my equipment was already modern enough, fast enough and futureproof enough. But it looks like honesty has brought my presence from heaven back to earth. If you're wanting to upgrade to Ivory III, unless you have some power in your computer, you may have to refrain for now.
I wonder if I need to get my money back?