I have had this sensation in the past, many, many times. And, I had it today. I know I will have it many more times.
I saw the following post by David B today:
I did not immediately recognize it as the resource recently put together by our colleague, Frederic L.
So, ever the curious about how VSTs sound (since I cannot afford but a few), I went and listened. I am always curious about the VSL offerings due to the raving in our midst. I've been curious about the Ivory grands, since a couple of them (the Bosendorfer and Bechstein or Steinway) come in a package that is sometimes discounted nicely. And, I think I remember that QuasiUnaFantasia plays them happily. I already have several Pianoteq models and am always curious about how they measure up against the others. And, of course, David B has recently fallen in love with Noire.
And, once again, that old sensation faithfully came back to me. I found many of them to be beautiful. I found many of them to be so nice that I could not possibly proclaim any one to be the best. If I somehow became restricted to using just one for the rest of my life, I could be content with nearly any of the 15 or so I listened to.
In fact, I suspect that I could be even happier, and suffer less of the wandering eye (or ear), if my choices were so limited. All that time I waste thinking about the "VST on the other side of the fence" would be spent in luxurious rapture, swathed in the soothing tones of one of these beauties. It would be the music sitting in the first row of the theater of my imagination, not the VST. And, I'd be happy.
I think we are spoiled for choice. I have no disdain for the supreme VST makers. Our world is richer for their efforts. In every endeavor, we are richer for the production of the pioneers and explorers, each of whom go further than any of their predecessors have gone before. But, in our parlors, where the piano waits with empty bench, I say forget the VSTs and just enjoy the music.
Several times, as I listened to all those recordings, I forgot about the VSTs. All I heard was the devotion to and love for the music Frederic L coaxed from them. The music was beautiful, regardless of the VST it was played on. Though it was seemingly not his purpose, I am grateful for the reminder that the music trumps all.
That's the word, according to Ralph.