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Joined: Feb 2012
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gub Offline OP
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hi all,

first, thanks for the great forums -- the info, user reviews/experiences, etc. helped in my recent decision to spend a year's savings on a DP. i was given a 10-year-old kawai some months ago, and decided to take up practising again after a 25-year break, last played when i was 7 heh. it's been great fun, and i thought i'd spoil myself with an upgrade.

my new DP, a roland rd-700nx, is a beautiful immersive instrument -- i'm not a kawai/roland/etc. fanatic, just a dozy hobbyist who would REALLY like to enjoy his instrument -- but i'm noticing something strange. i didn't notice this at the time of my in-store 700nx trial, nor when i first played it whilst still dizzy from the factory-fresh fumes. i certainly didn't hear anything like this in others' demos/vids etc... but now that i've heard it, i can't shake it. i still can't hear it in others' demos/vids, though i can't find a similarly slowish song sample to the one i'm trying to learn.

and it's really INSANE: the supernatural pianos sound out of tune! but only when the notes are played with damper pedal down. when they're ringing with the damper pedal down, it sounds like the pitch is very subtly and gently falling/lowering.

here's a link to a segment of a mutilated chopin piece in which i tried to highlight the effect. please ignore the technique -- my question is ultimately this: can you hear the pitch bending that i'm talking about?

if not -- and i'm 99% sure you won't hear it -- then it's something else. maybe the old kawai lacked the 'richness' of the roland, so i'm not used to the new harmonies/dissonances. or the sympathetic resonance is otherwise screwing with my mind. or i've completely lost the plot, which is frankly more likely than anything else.

fwiw, concert piano (#001) is at factory-reset defaults, reverb/chorus/sound focus are all switched off. i hear the same thing with the three core SN pianos -- dysphonia?! frown


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I must say I can't hear what you are talking about. Maybe I'd hear it with headphones on rather than my little PC speakers. If you want to demonstrate something like that, you should choose something much simpler - something with single notes or simple chords and long decays with the pedal held down so we can really focus on what you are talking about.

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Real acoustics usually also oscillate a bit when being played, which is partly why they don't sound as boring as some electronic keyboards :-)

But maybe what you're hearing is not being helped by the standard stretched Micro Tuning, as it has been set up from the factory?

If you hear this mainly when playing chords, try to switch off the micro tuning (make it flat) so that all notes are completely in tune with itself. You don't need to do this note by note; just change the type to "Off".


-- Per.


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Originally Posted by gub
the supernatural pianos sound out of tune! but only when the notes are played with damper pedal down. when they're ringing with the damper pedal down, it sounds like the pitch is very subtly and gently falling/lowering.


I'm not an expert on acoustic pianos but I think this is something that they do to a certain extent so perhaps the Roland is mimicking reality.

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gub Offline OP
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thanks for the quick replies.

ando, i can't notice the effect when i'm playing single notes, octaves or fifths etc. it only seems to come out with more dissonant chords and only when the damper pedal's down.

per, cheers, i had a look in there but the preset micro-tuning sounds far better than not to me.

this 'effect' disappears if the notes don't have the damper pedal depressed, so i thought it might be something with sympathetic resonance. but maxing out symp. res. to a ridiculous degree doesn't make it any worse (just weird), and turning symp. res. off sounds really dull.

well, i don't think the 'effect' has a basis in reality. it's probably more to do with having played for ~40 of the past 72 hours.......

thanks for your time.


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Well, I prefer also to have the micro tuning enabled (it is set up in a way that is quite similar to how a real piano is stretched, I think), but if you have a sensitive ear some chords may sound a bit "harsh". For some songs, I actually switch it off or bring a few key notes more in tune or something like that.

As for real pianos, the effect of having 3 strings sounding at the same time means you will get some slight beating when/if they are not perfectly in tune (which they often are not, unless you had your piano serviced within the last couple of days or so... YMMV). That effect is also noticeable with intervals, in so far the higher order harmonics clashes/beats with each other also. For a well tempered piano, there is even going to be some beating between the harmonics of one note vs the base note of others -- we're just used to hearing that as part of "nice" sounding chords :-)

So any two frequencies slightly out of tune with each other will cause a beating that may be somewhat like what you're hearing?

And the sympathetic resonance means there are more strings sounding, although subtly, and as more of those will also be beating with each others, it may possibly be causing what you're hearing?

So I agree with EssBrace; you can hear something similar in real acoustic instruments. A guitar string that is getting old or was accidentally twisted when mounted can even beat with itself ever so slightly, as the different oscillation modes of the string may not be perfectly in tune... Quite annoying when it happens, though!


-- Per.


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The question is, are you guys hearing this phenomenon when listening the the clip posted by the OP? Do you hear anything unusual?

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Originally Posted by gub
...the supernatural pianos sound out of tune! but only when the notes are played with damper pedal down. when they're ringing with the damper pedal down, it sounds like the pitch is very subtly and gently falling/lowering.

I can't say I hear it (I downloaded the MP3 and listened to it with good headphones) but that doesn't mean that you don't.

AFAIK pedal sympathetic resonance on the RD-700NX is an in-line effect made up of filtered time delays and pitch detuning. Perhaps you are hearing the effect of the latter?

- Turn off reverb (like you did before).
- Open up the pedal sympathetic resonance editing screen and turn "Sw" off. Does the problem go away?
- Turn "Sw" back on and "Depth" all the way up. Mess around with the other various parameters - in particular the "P-Sft" parameters. Try one at a time. Can you make the problem worse?

Let us know if you discover anything.

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Sounds ok to me too.

Note that on a real piano, the pitch starts off a bit sharp when a note is first struck, and then the pitch falls over time as the note is held. (I am not sure how quickly this happens). Now, it is my understanding that many DPs (both hardware and software) employ voice overlapping when the sustain pedal is used, to enrich the sound. I.e - if you repeat a note with the sustain pedal down, each time you play a note, the previous "voice" for that note will continue to ring, so you will have multiple voices playing the same note simultaneously. In at least one software DP, I can indeed hear significant beating due this overlapping (not authentic at all - sounds like a honky tonk), but I'm not sure whether it's due to the pitch starting off sharp or whether it's just different velocity samples having a different pitch.
If the SN does emulate the pitch envelope of a real piano, and if it also overlaps voices, this might explain it, HOWEVER, as I say, I can't hear this in your recording.

Greg.

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I am 'doremi' because I play scales smile
My teacher is 'domisol' because he plays chords shocked
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Originally Posted by ando
The question is, are you guys hearing this phenomenon when listening the the clip posted by the OP? Do you hear anything unusual?



Ummmm ...no I don't. It sounded like a normal SN piano to me


"I'm still an idiot and I'm still in love" - Blue Sofa - The Plugz 1981 (Tito Larriva)
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It sounds quite normal to me. Actually I don't understand what you mean the issue is. The acclaimed SuperNatural features naturally beautify decay. Not sure if this is the case. Another comment is, as you said it's an effect with damper pedal down, but you were tuning the string resonance level. Please note, the setting for damper resonance is not string resonance, it's another one. You may probably tune that setting.

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I hear it very easily, but perhaps I am too sensitive or prone to suggestion.

We've had other RD700 files posted, and I can't remember ever receiving the same impression of feeling the tone was off as I received from your file.

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Originally Posted by Dr Popper
Originally Posted by ando
The question is, are you guys hearing this phenomenon when listening the the clip posted by the OP? Do you hear anything unusual?



Ummmm ...no I don't. It sounded like a normal SN piano to me


What's the "ummmm" for,Dr? I stated that I didn't think there was anything unusual happening. I merely restated the OP's question because nobody else was actually answering it. Seems to have worked - you actually answered it.

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I tend to pick up on extremely small imperfections in DP's and let them drive me crazy, but in this instance, I can honestly say that I cannot hear anything like you are describing...perhaps you should spend some time playing some acoustic pianos :P


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I have a yamaha p60 and that piece is one of 50 free recordings..and the Roland sounds more velvety tone than the P60..do you have any "effects" turned on?

after listening again it seems to my ear, that velvety sound is causing a"roundness to the note" which makes it sound like a slight drop in pitch..on a low note it can give it a round not quite reverb/twang..

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Originally Posted by dewster
AFAIK pedal sympathetic resonance on the RD-700NX is an in-line effect made up of filtered time delays and pitch detuning.


You mean as in a chorus effect? Well to a fine ear that may sound offensive. I can't stand some chords of my fake rhodes (NE3HP) when the chorus is turned up too strongly and at the same time there is little harmonic distortion (nothing against real dirty sounds, though cool).

To the OP: I'd try to isolate the phenomenon you hear, as suggested, by modifying the sound parameters. Adding resonances does modify the spectrum of overtones in a sound and may thus give *the impression of* a shift of tuning in complex chords. If you don't hear a pitch change in single notes it is probable that you actually hear such a phenomenon.


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well gub, welcome to owning a digital piano. one day you love it, eventually it will drive you insane. everybody on this forum is semi-schizophrenic when it comes to hearing things. and you are right, once you hear it, it will haunt you. best thing you can do is just live with it and accept it. i swore that the european grand on my old yamaha p250 was out of tune- i heard all kind of oscillations that nobody else could hear. perhaps aliens were contacting me....

glad you're here!

PS: Scooby Hoo- i applaud you for admitting that what others suggest works its way into our brains like a hungry worm....


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Originally Posted by ando
Originally Posted by Dr Popper
Originally Posted by ando
The question is, are you guys hearing this phenomenon when listening the the clip posted by the OP? Do you hear anything unusual?



Ummmm ...no I don't. It sounded like a normal SN piano to me


What's the "ummmm" for,Dr? I stated that I didn't think there was anything unusual happening. I merely restated the OP's question because nobody else was actually answering it. Seems to have worked - you actually answered it.


That's what I'm here for wink


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Could it be one of the tuning options? I felt like my FP-7F had too much compensation in the bass notes for harmonics (aka, they were flat sounding).


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