SOS and Pianoteq go way back: we’ve reviewed every major version of Modartt’s modelled virtual piano instrument since it was introduced back in January 2007. Now, some seven years later, we’re presented with the latest and greatest version, Pianoteq 5. So, what’s new?
Like every other version of Pianoteq, physical modelling is at the heart of the sound engine, with no actual samples used at all to recreate the sounds. Each major version has seen the model refined and updated, and in the latest version, the modelling of the attack and soundboard have been addressed. The result, claim Modartt is “a new clarity and authenticity” in a range of the grand piano models.
There are also nine new piano models available, eight of which are based on historical instruments built between 1795 and 1899 and maintained by the Kremsegg Schloss Museum in Austria. The ninth new model has evolved by combining the best elements from several source pianos.
Modartt have also developed the physical model so it is now possible to work with virtual microphones based on popular designs, including classics from AKG, Neuman and RCA, among others. These mics can be rotated in three dimensions and attached to one another for positioning. You also get control over polarity and proximity effect.
There are three so-called ‘flavours’ available: Acoustic Pianos, Electric Pianos, and Chromatic Percussions, the last of which features vibraphone, xylophone and marimba models. Each flavour can be bought separately for an additional €49. There are also three licences available: Stage (€99), Standard (€249) and Pro (€399). Both Standard and Pro include all the features mentioned above, while Stage lacks the microphone features and the ability to tweak microphone models.