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  1. Although I have a ridiculous amount of virtual pianos, I have neither Sonivox Eighty-Eight nor anything EastWest and the only TruePianos I’ve got is the one that came bundled with some older version of SONAR (can’t remember which version it was though). So obviously I can’t say anything about the first two. But if I understand the inner workings of TruePianos correctly, it’s a hybrid consisting of both sampled and modelling parts which due to a small CPU footprint might make it a good choice if you’re primarily looking for something to use on stage. That hasn’t been a concern for me, so only looking at it from a studio perspective I would choose Addictive Keys Studio Grand ahead of TruePianos due to its beautiful and warm sound. But we’re all different and the way we perceive sound is very personal. But already having the XLN Online Installer, I see no reason why you shouldn’t download the free version of Addictive Keys Studio Grand and test it out for yourself.
  2. When it comes to virtual pianos, I can strongly recommend starting with the free version of Addictive Keys Studio Grand from XLN Audio. The free Studio Grand is a scaled-down version of the full Studio Grand with only 49 keys and fewer mic perspectives, but it comes with the same samples as the full instrument. Also, this demo version never times out and doesn’t require iLok or Kontakt. And you don't have to be afraid you're going to be ripped off - it comes from the same company that also makes Addictive Drums, which, as you may know, came bundled with SONAR Platinum. In the video below, you can get some examples of how the full Studio Grand sounds, but as I said the samples are the same in the free scaled-down version. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tV1zCw06zUQ To download it, simply install the XLN Online Installer, and after completion click the button Add Now to the right of ADDICTIVE KEYS > Studio Grand and let the installer do its job. After Cakewalk have scanned for new plug-ins you’re ready to go. Should you later decide to buy the full 88 key version, XLN Audio normally has one or two sales a year with a 50% discount which effectively puts the full version in the $45 price range (and that's in my opinion a steal for the full instrument).
  3. No, I failed on those two as well. Too dark even for my PS filters.
  4. Me too. It will be here on the 13th if my Photoshop adjustments didn't fool me. But the price had better be good.
  5. I just noticed that 8Dio has made the free sound library Free Radicals available again for download. I actually looked for it just a few days ago by the time Free Angels was released, but couldn’t find it anywhere on their site (or anywhere else). It was originally released as a free library back in 2012 and was presented as having an "unhealthy cluster of cancerous and asylum friendly sounds". As with all libraries from 8Dio, Free Radicals requires full Kontakt. Download this scary and ghostly Kontakt library here - if you dare...
  6. Depends on what time span “Black Friday” covers, but if confined to the month of November: Native Instruments K12U CE (upgrade) KV331 SynthMaster (crossgrade) + some additional expansions AudioThing Frostbite 2 (update) Toontrack EZKeys New Wave and Hooks & Chords MIDI Packs (already had Dream Machine) SampleTekk S.S.G. All the Samples from Mars Now let’s see what December has to offer…
  7. Among other things it's said to contain sounds from "Fluffy Creatures". Yup, that's a definite hole-filler.
  8. That’s because it's not a VST and as such directly visible to Cakewalk, but a sound library that runs inside Plogue sforzando. Assuming that you have previously installed sforzando and the sound bank is installed correctly, you should be able to see it in the sforzando Instrument bank menu.
  9. I couldn’t agree more. Whenever I need some orchestration in a song I always book Albert Hall and LSO for a day or two. Kontakt is for lazy people.
  10. Thanks husker! The code worked perfectly and I've just bought it so now I'm on my way to Mars. 🚀
  11. I honestly don’t care what other people think when it comes to virtual instruments. I only ask myself whether I like them or not. If I don’t, I won’t buy them no matter how must hype there is. And if I do, I might just buy it. But already having so many virtual instruments, the threshold for yet another purchase keeps getting higher and higher and the threshold for a true no-brainer price keeps getting lower and lower. One recent example: a week ago I bought the SampleTekk S.S.G (Small Studio Grand) for $7.90 on their Black Friday sale. I immediately loved the sound. I think it’s based on a Yamaha C3 or G3 but I’m not sure as SampleTekk won’t say. So while price is an important factor in any purchase decision, it has nothing to do with how you personally perceive the sound coming from the instrument. As for Toontrack EZkeys I have quite a few of those as well, and in particular the Upright have had very good reviews for being able to cut through the mix ever since it was released. Whereas for e.g. Alicia’s Keys (which I got as part of a bundle) I just can’t understand the hype – after a quick play-through I’ve never ever used it. Of course, there will always be people trying to motivate their high-priced purchases by claiming they are supreme. And I've never heard anybody doubt that Superior Drummer is better that EZDrums. But if something sounds good to your ears and the price is right, what else is there to ask for? As I said in another thread a few years back, not everyone needs a Mercedes Benz. For most people a Toyota will suffice. So be your own judge. I certainly try to be.
  12. In the bottom right corner of the status bar of the Theme Editor it says "Version". I must assume that is the latest version.
  13. Canopus

    8DIO Black Bundles

    This year’s 8DIO Black Week offers have so far been one great disappointment chained to another, nowhere near the great $18 and $28 deals they have so generously been offering recent years for individual instruments.
  14. Hey, that code actually worked! At first I thought it was a joke, but I just saved $599 and I’m downloading now! But I won’t say at which discounter because I may want to use it a lot more before I’m done and I can’t risk them running out of stock. Ok, so let’s sort by price and select “Highest to Lowest” this time…
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