I have been searching for some good sounding piano for along time and I'm still dissatisfied with TruePianos (which I own) and similar ones, because they have some weird phasing issues, which make it sound "far away", are not mono compatible etc. Eventhough I generally don't like Kontakt, after some audio demoes I decided to take my chances and bought this one.
1) Sound I like it a lot, finally... It is recorded as it should be, so it sounds like you are very close to it, which is IMHO essential when mixing, especially modern jazz/electro/r'n'b stuff. And here's the thing - it is really only a soft jazzy piano. I love that, but I don't think you will want to use it for classic music or just have it is "piano for everything".
One thing I'm not sure about yet is the response - it just feels to me like it is playing "behind", on the other hand I'm often getting ahead, so this kind of fixes me :)).
2) Features Basically there aren't any. Although Kontakt knows a lot, there isn't anything I found useful, except amounts of mechanical noise and stuff like that you will probably leave the way it is. But well, it's a piano, so what :).
3) Requirements And here are the negative sides - it needs lots and lots of memory... Actually I have finally run out of 32-bit system memory. Kontakt shows it uses about 400 MB, but I measured something very different... Honestly I don't think a piano should need so much, but that's probably a price for a good sound. But it's worse - it takes so much time to load, that I can literally grab a coffee everytime I reload a project :)... And if it runs out of memory it crashes...
4) Kontakt As I said I don't like Kontakt - you cannot demo the library, it takes a lot of system resources, GUI is too complicated if you just need a piano, but well, it could be worse :).
Conclusion: If you need a smooth jazzy piano, this one sounds great, but be prepared you will have to use a 64-bit OS (which IMHO is not an option on Mac, and won't be for a couple of years) and will need lots of system RAM ;).
Thought I could share my recent discovery, which I think is pretty cool.
So this is one of the thousands instruments from the company, which has kind of simple marketing strategy - single VSTi equiped with different samples every time, and for a very reasonable price. First, I consider this one very good for that price. It is a single instrument only - just an acoustic bass, you can vary effects, that's it.
How it sounds? I think pretty good. I never tried such an upright bass. Great thing about it is, that you can open it and play. No need apply 10 effects to get just a little reasonable sound. It just feels right.
Next GUI - well it is pretty big, like any other instrument though. I hate instruments, which you open and you just see a huge piano or drumset, because it is completely useless and you have to skip it anyway. This one contains a big bass image, but reasonably big :). And all other controls are inside the window, everything is where it should be. I dislike the preset management though - it has only 11 predefined presets (but that's enough, it's just a bass after all), you can save your own presets, but the problem is that the preset load button is so tiny... It is really pain in the ass to get your mouse at the position.
There is no need to talk about docs or customer support, since it isn't obviously very important in such a small thingy.
CPU usage and stability - well, very good I guess. No crashes at all, and it takes about 1-3% CPU, which is good IMHO.
One other thing is kind of problematic - the demo limitations. Well, it works only 3 days without the licence, which in my opinion is not enough. I evaluated their electric piano too, seems good, but I didn't buy it, since I had no time to check it properly. So folks, before trying this one out, take a few days off ;).
I was looking for a decent piano ever since. So logically then this comes up I immediately tried it, and these are my personal feelings about it.
First I like the sound. Unlinke Truepianos, which just seem so dull, or Pianoteq which IMHO has some weird phasing issues and the attack is just weird, this seems very good in all these matters.
This piano is one of the first, that felt good when I played it, and also it could easily fit the mix, which is in most cases a big problem (at least for me :) ).
So far the positives - now the negatives - first, for a piano made in Synthedit it is very expensive. The Synthedit problem follows - it has a very big unstable CPU and memory hit (unlike the description says). When I loaded it, it consumed all of the CPU for about 10 seconds, so the playback stopped. That doesn't matter so much, thought 10 seconds of loading is quite a lot IMHO. But then when I played a few notes, the CPU consumption raised by 20-30% with no exception. That's too much for a piano sampler/synthesizer. I have AMD 64 3000+.
And there's more - the CPU impact raises a lot with decreasing latency. I was almost unable to work with it in 44kHz and 256 samples latency, it was ok in 1024 samples, but let's be honest, 1/44 second isn't really sufficient for realtime playing/recording.
I didn't talk about GUI and such stuff, since this was a big stopper for me. Pitty, I hoped I found the one :).
Generally in my opinion this could be a great piano, but to make it really professional, they should stop using synthedit and make something real. They have done great recording job, but this needs some serious programming, which just isn't there. Well, I'm back with my ordinary piano from Cubase Halion One, which still sounds best, but not really ideal.
PS. There is no CPU consumption field in the ratings, so I put it into stability.
I've been looking for a good piano ever since. And truly, I was desperate. Most commercial products (and there are many many many of them) sound very good at first key-hit, but when you play some more notes, the sound becomes kind of muddy. Moreover they start for 5 minutes if you're not lucky.
Eventually I have found Prova. It has a weird name, absolutely no user interface, just one piano sound and is made in synthmaker. But it starts in a nanosecond, takes almost no CPU and sounds pretty good.
About the sound - it is not perfectly realistic. But it is bright, I mean very bright, so that even complicated compositions full of jazzy harmonies sound good. Maybe it is only my personal taste, but I like it this way.
Also the attack and release are very very fast, but that is very good for rhythmical music. It sound kind of "different", but I was very surprised, how easily can this thing fit into my compositions full of drums and bases.
The only thing about the sound, is some kind of odd balance between both channels, but it seems that mix to mono does not make any phasing or whatever, so it is probably only my feeling.
It has no settings or effects. This make it a little harder to use, but I want to use my effects anyway...
Yeah, and did I mention that it is free?? :-)
Now I'm really stucked - I don't know what points to give, because I like it a lot but there is no user interface :-).. Nevermind, so I'll make some compromise and choose some mediocre rating for those points.