I had something to add, cos for a few weeks, I have been using a really well sampled electric piano - Electric V by Production Voices.
I also had the opportunity to use a variety of other great sounding electric pianos, from products like SampleTank 2, Velvet by AIR, and the Electric 88 from Waves…
I have a theory, based on what I hear in all audio which I noticed ever so much more having played a few electric pianos over a few weeks. Note this theory applies also to other sounds such as acoustic pianos.
The human ear does not like a scientific perfect sound. e.g a sine wave without variation. Something about perfection says to the ear - there is no human feeling behind this.
With reference to electric pianos in particular, I was shocked to find that most of the enjoyment in an electric piano comes not from the fundamental sound of the piano itself but from the modulators - phasing, distortion, chorus, amp saturation of speaker, microphone if recorded via a speaker, etc, etc, and of course ambience…
When we listen to electric pianos on commercial recordings, so much of what we hear are the excellent modulations, after the fact that have been adopted over many years, to give the electric piano sound the much needed interest…
Without this embellishment, the piano player has to do a lot more work with their playing style to create this interest. In my experience.
So do not be too disappointed with the initial results of your sampling, if you do not sample using modulation effects during the capture stage (there are two schools of thought - do you sample an electric piano with effects or not ? - if sampled with effects e.g vibrato - this effect is baked into the sound, and cannot be changed after the fact but that is not a bad thing, only a design choice, for those who want flexibility post sampling, of course it is better to sample without effects)
So you have a choice of approaches.
Sample plain without effects - no vibrator, chorus, nothing - and leave it up to the end user to add their own effects. But this needs knowledge on the part of the end user. And they need to be well informed of the strategy behind this intention, The pure samples are not the most inspiring, especially when compared with products which have had effects added or included in the samples., but can be a bonus cos the end user has a lot of flexibility.
Sample plain without effects, but provide some in-built effects using the features of your sample engine. I am not an instrument creator, so while I can easily state what I’d like to see - I cannot help you with achieving this in any sample engine product e.g Sforzando or Kontakt…
Vibrator, Compression, Reverb, Distortion, Wah Wah, Flanging, Tremolo, Phaser, Rotary Leslie, Chorus are examples of the kind of effects. It is such a huge topic, with so many possibilities - too many options, when you also consider in what order the audio should flow through these effects.
- Sample with effects - This approach does bake in the effects in the sample and may sound more authentic than digital effects in a sample engine. It is an option and there are electric piano sampled products which adopt this approach, but the end result is not as flexible for the end user. On a positive note sometimes the complexity of the most endowed piano sampled library products can be a distraction. Imagine sitting at the cockpit of a large passenger aircraft and being asked to fly it, At one extreme, some sample libraries are cogs in the wheel of progress - leaving too many doors open to experimentation, doodling and wasted creativity.
Ultimately every user of music instruments has to decide, where their focus lies
To create a unique sound as a key contributor to their end result
Or to focus more on the composition, and arrangement, rather than having a one-in-town instrument. Case in point - the instruments of the orchestra have not changed much if at all, in the last 100 years, yet there is so much good and satisfying music made every day from the same instruments…
So in designing an instrument, you must decide who is this for, an arranger/composer who just needs a decent patch as a starting point with no too many options, or a tweakhead who values lots of control. Or somewhere in between.
Please enjoy your design process and I look forward to trying out your results.
Kindly post here on this thread so I am notified when you have something I can listen to or tryout myself.