Developed by their Advanced Instrument Research (A.I.R.) group, Digidesign say that Velvet is a powerful new RTAS instrument plug-in that delivers highly realistic emulations of your favorite electric pianosâ€”from classic to modernâ€”to your Pro Tools system. Velvet accurately emulates the nuances of the original instruments, both in sound quality and playing feel, and is based on four legendary electric pianosâ€”the Fender Rhodes Suitcase, Fender Rhodes MK I and MK II Stage Pianos, and Wurlitzer A200.
Peter Gorges, director of Digidesignâ€™s A.I.R. group told us, â€œWith Velvet, our goal was to bring the incredible sound, feel, and playing dynamics of legendary electric pianos to Pro Tools with such a high degree of authenticity, it would convince even the most discerning musicians who've played these pianos for decades.â€�
Digidesign say that dialing up the perfect piano sound is easyâ€”just select one of over 100 presetsâ€”or tweak the sound to your heartâ€™s content with unrivaled sound control. Velvet features precisely modeled emulations of classic tube overdrive, compression, EQ, wah/filter, chorus, tremolo, tape delay, and other effects to deliver realistic sounds of the highest quality. And its controls work virtually almost like the originals, allowing you to easily modify sounds at the twist of a knob or notch of a slider. â€œThe sound of a vintage piano isn't just what you record at its audio output,â€� Gorges notes. â€œItâ€™s also shaped by the amplifier and speakersâ€”or a preampâ€”and most sounds rely on effects such as chorus, phaser, wah, and tape delay.â€�
To achieve its ielectric piano recreations, Velvet employs proprietary dynamic modeling, a unique combination of sampling and modeling techniques. â€œWe first recorded select original pianos with painstaking precision for accurate sound character reproduction, which no current modeling technique can cover convincingly,â€� explains Gorges. â€œThen we looked at the various behaviors of the piano as you play it, and trained the underlying engine to reproduce them.â€� This allows you to pull off sounds youâ€™d normally only hear with a real electric pianoâ€”from the faintness of the lightest pianissimo to the note splat of the strongest fortissimo.
Having almost every electric piano sound imaginable available in the form of a plug-in has its advantages over the real deal, as Gorges attests to: â€œEven if you find four pianos that are as perfectly built and adjusted as the ones weâ€™ve used, it would be hard to carry around four pianos with you.â€�
Pricing and Availability:
Velvet will be available soon for $249 US MSRP.