Why aren't more libraries using half peddling?

edited September 2021 in Digital Audio Workstations

Curious as to why there isn't more of this. It creates an authentic piano feel. I know ravenscroft, pianoteq, and some others support it. I think it's essential to getting a real acoustic sound.


  • Oh that's cool. I wasn't aware this was a technique. It requires a specific articulation or mode correct? I don't think most midi pedals are capable of sending more than an "on-off" signal (0/127). Definitely would be a cool feature on the full grands or intimate felts!

  • I learned my lesson when I 1st bought an M-Audio pedal. When I tried to configure it in Pianoteq, it identified it as an on/off gizmo.

    Then I knew what to look for. I got a Roland DP-10 and it does the job. And it's not expensive.

  • AndreG, I have that pedal (Roland DP-10), but mine is kinda 'stuck'... continuously sending values even when released... not going quite to zero, but flooding MIDI data with 3 1 2 2 3 4 1 3 1 etc. If I physically push the pedal fully back up, then it shuts up.

    (and yes, I just filed a ticket with Roland this evening on this).

    Curious to know if this is, indeed, indicative of defective pedal or if you've seen the same thing on yours (e.g., maybe this is just how these pedals are)?

  • I have a roland dp-08 and it works fine. I have no issues at all with it. I use it with Pianoteq. I have also tried for fun to assign a continous expression controller to my damper channel. I have an studiologic sl73 and it supports continous pedals. It also allows you to insert different midi messages vie the sl editor. I had luck with the Nektar expression pedal assigned as a damper. Works great, but a pedal is easier to control. That being said, I am really curious as to why so many libraries avoid having half damper settings? I imagine the sample sizes would be larger and it is more difficult to script. But soooo necessary for getting an authentic piano sound. No acoustic piano just "shuts off" the way piano libraries do. I would love to know if spitfire has plans for this, or any thoughts etc.

  • I found that the pedal was actually defective, and Roland was being kinda a jerk and not offering to replace it; I was shocked to learn that their warranty is just 90 days -- unheard of, IMHO, from any reputable company :(.

    Even more frustrating: in all my research, I found that their pedal really has no equal when it comes to half-pedaling support, so I very very grudgingly bought a new one (which thankfully has been fine).


    Re piano libraries supporting half-pedaling... it seems that nearly all do nowadays? I have a handful of piano libraries via my Komplete 13 Ultimate purchase + Simple Sam's Steinway + Pianoteq... and I haven't found any of those NOT supporting half-pedaling. Granted, it's often an option that's quite buried (and not on by default) but it's there.

    I can't speak for Spitfire libraries, though :(. I love the Spitfire libraries I have, but none of 'em are pianos.

  • Actually, some acoustic pianos do, in a way, "just shut off." It all depends on the shape of the damper felts, and can even vary over different string ranges in the same piano. For instance, if the damper felts are flat, they'll basically just shut off, with just a tiny bit of almost unusable partial damping before they come to rest. At the other extreme, the felts can be wedge-shaped, so that they fit down between the strings (or around the string, if there's only one, like in the lowest bass). That gives you much more control over the damping, with many shades of damping between full ring and fully damped. Unfortunately, it tends to be the more expensive pianos that have that kind of damper felt. My Kawai 600 has wedges on some of the bass notes, but flats everywhere else, sadly.

    All that said, I agree that it would be very nice to have samples that enable that, if you've got the controller for it. Out of curiosity, do the MIDI pedals that support more than simple on/off do a full, continuous range of partial damping, or just a few half-damped steps?

  • They do a full continuous range I believe.

  • FGM
    edited November 2022

    Are you aware DP-10 has a switch that allows it to work either as an ON/OFF pedal or as an EXPRESSION one ?