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Kurzweil - the future?

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Kurzweil - the future?

Postby One Horse Town » Thu Jul 06, 2017 7:11 am

Here's the thing. YouTube demos of keyboards such as K2600's and PCK3's mostly impressive - you can see them in West End orchestra pits (sad irony) - imo both analogue and digital sounds (in some cases) beat Roland/Yamaha stuff hands down - they're built like tanks. BUT I went on their website the other day and the product range hadn't really changed since the last time I looked...a year ago. Go on the forums and people are saying that the 'VAST' engine hasn't changed for decades and is thus making the product line sound dated. Having said that some are prepared to pay thousands for ancient Roland synths. Not an issue in a musical but for other stuff? Thoughts anyone?
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Scramble » Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:31 am

Roland, Korg and Yamaha keyboards are often still based around a lot of same old sounds and architecture they've had for decades. But they are updating to some extent, eg. Roland with their excellent Supernatural sounds. Are Kurzweil doing anything like that?
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Kevin Nolan » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:06 am

I own a K2500XS with all updates - Piano, Orchestral, Contemporary ROMS, Latest available OS with KB3 Organ model, KDFX, 128MB RAM and K-Sounds Steinway Piano loaded, internal HD, libraries of programs....

Even though it's 20 years old, it's still magnificent. This instrument, along with some other Romplers from that time - SY77/99, O1R/W and a few others have such longevity and relevance today because they combined several features which only in hindsight you can see were absolutely top-notch:

1. They were exquisite "controllers" - with the K2500 hosting two Ribbons , Fatar keyboard with aftertouch, Mod wheels, breath control, bucket loads of I/O... - that actually surpass even top MIDI controllers of today

2. They had fantastic synth engines. Think of the K2500 - it isn't just VAST. It's a sampler, Rompler, Hammond Organ Virtual engine, and then VAST which is actually equivalent to a virtual analog modelling synth with user configurable architecture even though it wasn't called that at the time.

3. The detail that went into programming sounds on these synths was nothing short of exquisite - largely because the RAM/ ROM resources were so limited that there had to be the most meticulous of programming to make them work - and so many of these programs still sound fantastic.

Overall, in my opinion, the likes of the K2500 - and even up to the OASYS / Kronos - were so "over the top" in features that the market / user base took it totally for granted and hugely under appreciated what these companies were delivering every few years.

When you look at a relatively small company like Kurzweil - or even Korg or Yamaha's synth division for that matter - and what they had (historically) to deliver every few years - new synth paradigms / engines; new physical controllers, new operating systems .... - it was remarkable but surely unsustainable (?)

And that's my central point. Just where could Kurzweil go with all this amazing technology that had, quite frankly, matured by the K2500 in the mid 90's? The VAST engine, and also the likes of OASYS STR-1 and MOD-7 synth engines are staggeringly sophisticated and must have taken engineers gargantuan efforts to develop - yet - who cares? Nobody buying a Kurzweil today gives a toss about VAST and will never program it!

So I think that paradigm just burnt itself out - Kurzweil hasn't really had anywhere else to go, short of reinventing themselves completely - but you need the resources to do that. I believe that's what Roland are doing now out of necessity. From releasing workstation after workstation with 128 and even 256 Voices - all overwhelmingly under-appreciated by the user base (the number of online complaints about the Jupiter80's 'use' / 'allocation' 256 voices is an example) - so what have Roland gone and done - said "OK - if giving more and more is getting us nowhere sales and appreciation wise, lets scale it all right back" - and are now delivering 4-voice synths that people are falling over themselves to buy.


So for Kurzweil to compete again, they are likely to have to go the same route. The problem with VAST is that it's horrendous to program. If you want to change, for example, just the cutoff frequency of one sound - to have to learn Kurzweil's way of representing filters numerically, then go into each layer, and edit a plethora of numbers. In all my 10+ years of owning the K2500XS - I have never succeeded in programming / editing even one sound - it's too complicated. And even their amazing KDFX is all number-menu driven - so I can't get a "feel" for how good those effects are because they are so complicated to program. And I can program an SY77 / 99 as if I'm buttering toast, and have a physics degree. VAST is amazing - but it's impenetrable to most, and Kurzweil have not done much to help the end user in that regard.


So overall Kurzweil are, in my view, sitting on amazing technology that matured 20 years ago yet, particularly with VAST, have never made it accessible enough. At this stage the world has long since moved on. They may retain a niche market as a robust live/performance instrument company as you point out, but one would have to question the viability of that market.


But I maintain in my setup a K2500XS, SY99, O1R/X, JV2080+Cards, XV5080+Cards and Triton-Rack+Cards because that era delivered, in my opinion, a pinnacle of synthesis all of it's own - it wasn't analogue and it wasn't plugins - but it was a pinnacle of physical instrument / controller design and implementation, a pinnacle of synth operating systems design and in my view THE pinnacle of synthesizer sound-programming, to this day. I actually auditioned and optimised about 15000 programs for the SY77 and 99 and selected the best 750 for my library - and there is _literally_ nothing on the market today that can compete with that - THAT's how good the best of those synths / workstations can be.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Forum Admin » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:25 am

Great post Kevin. Nailhead duly hit.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Zukan » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:40 am

F.... me Kev, that was epic.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Kevin Nolan » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:48 am

Crikey - thanks for liking my post. An excellent thread about an era in synthesis perhaps a little under appreciated but which, yielded, as we know, some amazing instruments.

And indeed - wasn't it an exciting time - every NAMM seemed to deliver a really exciting new upgrade, or generation, of instrument through the late 80's, 90's and early noughties that for me isn't _quite_ the same today (I'm getting old :-) ). Perhaps we'll see the best of those synths regain credibility and value over time??
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby desmond » Thu Jul 06, 2017 11:29 am

Kevin Nolan wrote:And indeed - wasn't it an exciting time - every NAMM seemed to deliver a really exciting new upgrade, or generation, of instrument through the late 80's, 90's and early noughties

It was an exciting time, as new things were coming, technology and computing power was increasing, and I was young and into this stuff!

It was also the pinnacle of digital technology allowing ever more complicated engines being shoved into boxes without a good way to accessing it, other than a screen and a handful of buttons. The engines of things like the SY99, XV5080 and so on are fantastic, but it's just not fun or inspirational programming those things - and when they came with 1000+ sounds, why bother?

And at peak late 90s digital, the kids had already embraced the analog resurgence. They didn't want to buy a £2K digital rompler, they were rediscovering cheap TB303s, TR909s, analog filters and cheap analog polys that everyone had offloaded previously for peanuts as the new digital thing came along. And that was the sound that had started to infiltrate the charts, and popular culture.

And we see a continuing trend today - kids have gone back to the types of studios/environments that we *started* with - loads of small, restricted functionality boxes (often analog) all connected together, and jamming around with them, turning knobs. Not quite as much of a mess of cables these days with USB etc, but still a bunch of small boxes connected together - that's how I used to work before we started getting computer sequencers as a central hub, and could work in one place with a bunch of synths/racks hanging off it - and then we could add audio etc, and we moved to the whole DAW thing where we are today.

The thought of going back to a whole mess of small boxes doesn't really excite me (though there is much to be said for realtime hands on control), but that's what a lot of kids are doing and loving. I expect if you showed a lot of those people a TG77 or XV5080, they'd go "why would I want a dumb box full of pianos and strings??"

Kevin Nolan wrote: that for me isn't _quite_ the same today (I'm getting old :-) ).

Getting old is *definitely* part of it I think, and I feel many of those same attitudes and feelings. I doubt the kids are as jaded about making music - they can jam around, record audio and videos, publish to the world and make an audience, in ways we could only dream of back then.

Kevin Nolan wrote:Perhaps we'll see the best of those synths regain creditability and value over time??

Everything comes and goes due to fashion I guess. I never would have thought, coming from the days of the DX21 and FB01 that people would get excited over companies releasing 4-op FM boxes with limited polyphony in 2016, but there you go - and packaging counts for a lot too.

Musical taste is also part of it - listen to the "popular charts" in the 80s/90s (and movie music too), and you'll hear a musical style which featured heavily the signature sounds of the new technologies of the time - whether it was analog monosynths in the early 80s, through to the DX7, the Fairlight, then the D50, M1's and so on.

Now listen to the popular charts of today (what there is let of them) and equate the music the kids are listening to with the 90s era digital romplers - it just doesn't really suit that sound, or even the way a lot of this music is being produced. (I'm not saying this is the only music that matters of course, but the pop music for the kids is a big driver of culture and music going forwards.) The current pop stuff "sound" is probably more a product of DAW production, editing and processing, than it is a synth technology.

No wonder then that companies have kept the high end digital good traditional sounding keyboards (and various live, piano and organ offfshoots) for the "keyboard players", and have gone back to small boxes for the kids - everything else can be done inside the computer everyone has (be it phone, tablet or laptop/desktop).

Basically, there seems to be a growing trend to *get away* from doing everything inside the computer - many people are removing computers completely from the equation, leaving aside all the advantages of a DAW because they are missing the spontaneity and "fun" that jamming with instruments can provide. And I don't blame them, I kind of feel it too - there was something nice (whether real or jusat nostalgia) about doing things in a pre-DAW era, despite the other (many) problems and resource limitations. Running stuff live, jamming on a desk, having spinning tape reels... I dunno, it somehow helped put you in the moment more than DAWs can, in many ways - it's very easy to switch off into computer mode.

But I think those feelings are less about the tools, and more about the people and the process...
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby One Horse Town » Thu Jul 06, 2017 11:46 am

Some brilliant and informative comments on here. So waiting for Kurzweil to come out with VAST 2 (or a user-friendly equivalent) isn't likely to happen then? Perhaps they'll be bought out by a competitor - could result in an interesting lovechild.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Dave B » Thu Jul 06, 2017 1:22 pm

Kurzweil owners have debated this on their own forums for years.

So a couple of points worth considering :

1. Kurzweil has been a 'boutique' manufacturer now for a long time - well over a decade. It's not anywhere near the same league as the big three. But then so is Nord. And both companies are producing instruments that people still want, despite not being everything to everyone. They simply don't have the resources to launch a new synth or major update every year. But their gear is stable and well known. And sound great. There is something to be said for longer product lifespans and I know people who have been burned when 'failed' products have been ditched and no spares / repairs are available a couple of years later.

2. Saying that, VAST has had a few tweaks over the years. When the PC3 launched, they updated it so that layers could also process other layers and added algorithms to handle that. Plus they now have very high resolution, non-aliasing oscillator blocks so creating more traditional synth sounds is lovely and clean all the way up the keyboard. (and associated filters - basically all the work they did with creating a VAST-based VA synth that never got made).

But, tbh, VAST has been a programmer's wet dream now for over 20 years. It's pretty darned good ;)

Yes, you do have to learn their way of programming, and to know it fully is a daunting prospect, but there are YT tutorials out there for wave sequencing, FM, all sorts of mad things.

In some respects, their new kit is ahead of the game : I weep that my Kronos doesn't retain samples after power down. But then rejoice that my Forte does. (all 3.3Gb of it and that's quite respectable). Polyphony is 128 notes same as most - but then the whole (fully polyphonic) organ emulation is free on the Forte. Nice.

Back to VAST, as I said earlier, the user base has discussed this for a while. And that includes the occasional Kurz staff member. The general consensus of that speculation is that any next gen VAST will probably not have much in the way of programming tweaks, but might see some macro based editing as a 'simple view' to get you started and allow you to go under the hood and use full VAST for trickier stuff. Sounds sensible to me - I'll wait and see if it happens.

In the mean time, for a boutique manufacturer, they do ok. And the OP is right - they are definitely big in the Theatre. I've just sold one to pro who does time in the pits and he pointed out that a certain high profile show, which made a big deal of the fact that the main keys player uses a Kronos, is actually coming off Kurzweils behind the scenes...
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby The Elf » Thu Jul 06, 2017 1:52 pm

The thing with VAST is that Kurzweil got it right. I was great then, it is great now - and MUCH more friendly to program than the Kronos, for one successful example. Call me strange, but I LIKE to program in numbers - at least when they are in Hz and dB; the numbers mean what they say.

I have to admit that I was prepared to leave VAST behind recently, and then a certain chap above introduced me to the PC3 and I was smitten all over again - what a fantastic keyboard. Just a pity they dropped the nice vocal samples from the earlier machines and replaced them with all that goddawful Take 6 scat garbage!
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Kevin Nolan » Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:31 pm

@Desmond - agree with most of what you say, but I disagree that kids today would look at a TG77 in the way you describe if they had access to my library! I mean that. It reveals the SY/TG to retain world class dynamism in sound - and thats as coveted today as at any time. Why, because the optimised library I've spent dozens of hours assembling is the best of thousands of programmers over many years - and its pure quality at the highest level, still.

Respectfully suggest you're kind of saying those 90's instruments were just inherently 'lesser' in capability compared to those available today; and that's not the case in many respects. They just dont know about about them well enough (yet). My point above being that those 90s devices, at their best, is still a pinnacle in synthesis. I believe it will be rediscovered, and aspects of it have not been surpassed.


I also don't feel _quite_ as ageist about all of this as you might feel ( sure I feel my age :-) !! ) - but I love the new as well as the old technology (in the past two years I've bought a ridiculous amount of new instruments and controllers - two Boutiques, Reface CS, Monotribe, BeatStepPro, QuNexus, Seaboard Grand and a Push2 - still trying to figure most of it I admit :-) ). And yes they offer an approach so pertinant to todays music, but actually - I got to tell you - they all integrate pretty well with DAW environments and with a plethora of analogue and Rompler synths from the 90's too.

But I also got it say - none is 'stand out superior'. And - look across Youtube at Volca/AIRA only based setups and you rapidly witness real limitations - yeah they are great for producing endless variations of beats, glitches and what not - but - it all sounds the same. I anticipate "the kids" abandoning that paradigm pretty quickly and looking for more sophosticated means of making music, and in that you can bet they'll start looking to the past - including the best of the Kurzweil generation of synths!! There not done with yet.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Kevin Nolan » Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:43 pm

@ The Elf - respectfully disagree that VAST is easier to program than the OASYS / Kronos. Indeed STR-1 and MOD-7 are deep - but - its user interface is amazing and I agree with Desmond's point that actually those complex instruments were widely acknowledged to be a pain to program through those small LCD based screens.

And on that @One Horse Town: I fully expect Kurzewil, Yamaha and Korg to implement all of their past synth engine glories as VST / AU Plugins at come juncture. Korg have already done a lot of that of course, and now we have Roland Cloud - so surely it's only a matter of time before we see a software based VAST synth engine, SY or VL synth engine or MOD-7, AL-1 and STR-1 from Korg? Once all other revenue options are exhausted on those technologies in hardware, surely they'll gain a second life in software??
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby The Elf » Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:57 pm

Kevin Nolan wrote:@ The Elf - respectfully disagree that VAST is easier to program than the OASYS / Kronos.
We'll have to agree to differ. Much as I love the sound of the Kronos I find it an utter nightmare to program - parameters never seem to be where I expect them to be, and I have to find modulation options across multiple pages...

To each their own! :)
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby desmond » Thu Jul 06, 2017 9:06 pm

Kevin Nolan wrote:@Desmond - agree with most of what you say, but I disagree that kids today would look at a TG77 in the way you describe if they had access to my library! I mean that. It reveals the SY/TG to retain world class dynamism in sound - and thats as coveted today as at any time. Why, because the optimised library I've spent dozens of hours assembling is the best of thousands of programmers over many years - and its pure quality at the highest level, still.

Maybe. I'm sure the sounds you have are great for you, but don't forget not everybody shares the same taste in sounds - I'm sure there's plenty of sounds I love that others would hate, and vice versa...

Kevin Nolan wrote:Respectfully suggest you're kind of saying those 90's instruments were just inherently 'lesser' in capability compared to those available today;

I'm saying nothing of the sort, I don't know where you got that from...
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby johnny h » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:12 pm

Since Ray Kurzweil sold the company in the 90s development slowed to a crawl. Great synths for their day and a bargain on the second hand market, but sorely lacking compared to modern synth engines.

Sadly for us, Ray decided to use his great talents to make gazillions in the stock market and developing technology to live forever. What is it with these crazy geniuses?
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Dave B » Fri Jul 07, 2017 8:03 am

Wrong and wrong ... but then why let facts get in the way ? :roll:

The initial development of the K2000 went through several iterations and stabilised on v3. But Young Chang acquired the company in 1990 - the same year that the _original_ K2000 was released. Before that, there where basically the K250, the K150, and then spin offs (midiboard and K1xxx series). Sure the 250 was great and way ahead of the competition but it's not like the company was throwing revolution after revolution out the door one minute and nothing the next.

(edit : just noticed that we have to scrub the Midiboard from that list - it was actually designed by Key Concepts and licensed to Kurzweil)

Oh .. minor point .. who was the legend who worked on the K2000 and oversaw all it's analogue samples and was the consultant on how it should sound? A certain Dr Moog ...

The 90s gave us the stabilisation and expansion of VAST, new sample sets, the ability to sample, KB3 mode, total overhaul of the effects (KDFX spun off into some wild effects units), Triple mode for VAST, additional algorithms ... all in the 90s ...

And Ray was actually brought back into the fold as part of the sale to Hyundai in 2006/7.

The whole point of the posts above is that the VAST _engine_ is pretty darned top notch and I'd love you to give me an example of a modern engine which gives it a spanking. Please?
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Escapegoat » Fri Jul 07, 2017 8:52 am

Can any of you guys point me at a video that shows sound design on VAST? Real detail - not one that just explains the building blocks and parameters, but one that digs into VAST's unique abilities to create a sound that it is not to be found on lesser synth engines.

In all my GS/YT/etc mooching, I've never found one. VAST (like the FS1R) seems to be one of those exotica where the cognoscenti claim it's better than anything else but are unable to give examples that demonstrate it.

I'm genuinely interested. I've got space now for an 88-key piano weighted synth, and the low cost of used Kurzweils makes them look very suitable.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Kevin Nolan » Fri Jul 07, 2017 10:07 am

@Escapegoat - haven't looked at these but there's four of them so perhaps they're quite detailed (?)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CmD3gjLpHZ4


@Desmond- while I agree that the SY77 and 99 libraries I "optimised" are personal to me, the point I'm making is a bit more general. For example, I didn't trawl through the 15000 sound available to me with a selection process based on what I like. The criteria I used included retaining any sounds that 1) did not sound dated 2) did not sound "DX 'farty" (I think we all know what that sounds like :-) ) 3) sounded timbrally strong, flexible or convincing and 4) avails of excellent articulation / dynamics though available MIDI and other hardware controllers.

What emerged was a quite extrordinary library of AFM and AFM-RCM programs that, quite honestly, are better in many cases than even the recently demonstrated Non-Linear Labs C-15 nonlinear synth, for example.

Overall, when you take the _best_ of those instruments, you uncover a treasure-trove of synthesis. I've done similar "optimizations" of the VL1 and indeed even for the Korg Triton I trawled through thousands of Programs and Combi's and chose the best few hundred - so that I am confident that my Korg Titon-Rack Combi banks are filled with sounds to rival any current "hybrid synthesis tool".

It's the same for the K2000 and especially 2500 - the VAST engine is, to this day, extraordinary in capability. It just has never been fully exploited.

I accept that lack of exploitation to their maximum potential IS the big downfall of that era - as you correctly point out because it wasn't fun to program them even through 64x256 pixel LCD screens; but that's not to say the sounds haven't been designed and "scattered across the web" in different online archives - they have - and I happen to be nuts enough to trawl through thousands of them for years on end late into the night to extract the best of them.

But - if those synth engines get a second wind in software with better user interfaces, I believe they will actually find their best expression and potentially widest use.

Imagine an SY99 AFM-RCM or K2500 VAST engine programmable through a modern plugin interface. I'd be confident you'd have musicians young and old very interested in it.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby One Horse Town » Fri Jul 07, 2017 11:25 am

johnny h wrote:
Sadly for us, Ray decided to use his great talents to make gazillions in the stock market and developing technology to live forever. What is it with these crazy geniuses?

FFS - you even managed to work in anti-capitalism here as well. But hey, congrats for not using the word 'Tories'.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Dave B » Fri Jul 07, 2017 12:00 pm

(can we please keep the personal comments - from everyone - out of here..? It's bad enough that it's in the Lounge)

Escapegoat, there's a nice Kurz fan called PoserP who posts great tutorials on programming the PC3x/VAST. Check out his youtube channel :

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRE_HYV3EgGsHAZz5BXk8ag

he's very knowledgable and definitely not a slick pro, so it's a bit rough, but he does present things quite well and shows interesting techniques. Like physical modelling with VAST (wow). He's also on the standard Kurz forums and seems a lovely chap always ready to help fellow users. Bit of a star really.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Dave B » Fri Jul 07, 2017 12:06 pm

Also, it might be worth a trawl through google for old stuff - I dimly recall a tutorial on turning a K2000 into a monophonic 96 (*) partial additive synth by doing clever things with the function generators.

Funny enough, I just googled that to confirm and the older versions of VAST didn't allow layer chaining as it could mean FM - and Kurzweil were being polite to Yamaha ... lol
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby johnny h » Fri Jul 07, 2017 12:35 pm

One Horse Town wrote:
johnny h wrote:Sadly for us, Ray decided to use his great talents to make gazillions in the stock market and developing technology to live forever. What is it with these crazy geniuses?

FFS - you even managed to work in anti-capitalism here as well. But hey, congrats for not using the word 'Tories'.
I wasn't being anti-capitalist so you can stop with your unprovoked nonsense.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby The Elf » Fri Jul 07, 2017 3:22 pm

VAST doesn't create anything fundamentally 'new' or 'unique', any more than any other synth engine. What it does is make creating sounds relatively simple (IMHO) and precise (all parameters in dB and Hz), and is backed up with samples and audio quality that are exemplary. A string pad is a string pad - what makes it special is down to the ear of the beholder.

Not everyone can hear the difference, and that doesn't matter - if you don't 'get' VAST then that's fair enough - there are plenty of other synths.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby One Horse Town » Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:38 pm

johnny h wrote:
One Horse Town wrote:
johnny h wrote:Sadly for us, Ray decided to use his great talents to make gazillions in the stock market and developing technology to live forever. What is it with these crazy geniuses?

FFS - you even managed to work in anti-capitalism here as well. But hey, congrats for not using the word 'Tories'.
I wasn't being anti-capitalist so you can stop with your unprovoked nonsense.

Nonsense? Oh the irony. By the way I will 'stop' when I choose to, not you. However, unlike you, I won't need to resort to emotive language and yawn-inducing predictably to make my point. Something that many on these forums (including SOS staff) have repeatedly pointed out to you.

I apologise to everyone else and was only responding to someone who insists on incorporating implied political negativity (see above) into even an innocuous subject such as Kurzweil's products. I won't be responding to Johnny's inevitable and calm riposte.
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Re: Kurzweil - the future?

Postby Dave B » Fri Jul 07, 2017 6:01 pm

Anywayyyyyy ..... Getting back to the point ....

The Elf is quite right - there's all sorts of engines out there and something for everyone. Personally, I'm not wild about FM but concede that in the right hands it can produce exquisite results. I always hoped that AFM/RCM would be pushed as the potential (particularly on the SY99 with it's ability to use user samples in the operators) was massive. I comparing it to VAST, though, is really apples and oranges - both are fruit and both make great juice, but they are different things.

As for Kurzweil's future (the original point of this post), it seems in safe hands. The Forte is Kurzweil's move to a more modern platform / architecture (different processor, flash ram, etc) and that seems to have gone swimmingly. They are open about the idea of building another 'K' type workstation, but are practical about how to do it - they are precedents of companies sinking a) their cash into a new product that isn't mature and b) into oblivion because of this. I _really_ hope that they do make a next gen workstation because I'll be in the queue when they do.

One other point : the benefit of evolution over revolution? I can load K-series programs (from as far back as the original K2000) into the PC3-series quite happily - which is compatibility for over 20 years worth of patches. It's only the Forte which is limited - and even then, as long as I keep a (still current) PC3 handy, I can convert and load. Not bad ... not bad at all.

:)
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Dave B
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