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  • VSL Fazioli F212 Review

    God Bless,


    F308, D-274, 280VC, Bösendorfer Imperial, Vienna Imperial
  • Hi David,

    Thanks so much for sharing!

    Did you try to use the built-in per-note EQ and Dynamics options to adjust the region you address to your liking (on the EDIT page in the Synchron Pianos Software?


    Paul Kopf Product Manager VSL
  • last edited
    last edited

    @Paul said:

    Did you try to use the built-in per-note EQ and Dynamics options to adjust the region you address to your liking (on the EDIT page in the Synchron Pianos Software?

    Hi Paul.

    I did try those various adjustments and I'm sure someone more competent than I am can shape the sound even more toward my preference than I can. However, you can only go so far with software edits. I don't know anything about voicing a piano, but it seems like that lower-mid octave I pointed out just doesn't have the same resonate bloom heard elsewhere and particularly in the lowest register. I'm wondering if that's the octave that was re-voiced with different hammers as mentioned in the description on the VSL F212 page.

    I realize this piano was acquired by the owner in 1998 and I don't know what has or has not been done to it over the years, but I've been spoiled by the VSL F308 and was expecting that kind of consistency and evenness in tone but just on a smaller scale. I would imagine that the F308 you acquired/sampled is a newer piano and maybe Fazioli has changed their voicing over the years. It would be neat if you sampled a new F212. I suspect that would truly feel more like the F308’s younger brother rather than a second cousin.

    Thanks for the effort put into this project and I'm sure there will be people who prefer it just like it is. Sometimes we need something warm and soothing without the superabundant presence found in a concert grand.

    God Bless,


    F308, D-274, 280VC, Bösendorfer Imperial, Vienna Imperial
  • Paul-

    I am in agreement with David. There is a general consensus among users who have tried and/or purchased licenses for the F212 that there's a 'dead area' in octave 2 E-B plus the B above these notes. There are also some other notes which are uneven to a lesser degree and benefit from adjustment. One other minor issue I've noticed is that bass notes, when played with just enough velocity to create a sound, often produce a 'fuzzy' tone which I've never heard with any other VSL piano. For me, it's not a deal breaker as I seldom hear it in my repertoire, but it's there. I've tried various velocity curve adjustments to try to mitigate this (I tend to adjust the curve on most VSL pianos), but no joy.

    As has been documented on the VI-Control forum, the 'dead note' problem can be corrected via individual note adjustment edits (decreasing the fundamental and slightly increasing the 2nd harmonic and applying a volume increase to offset). I was originally going to return the piano but after applying this plus some other adjustments I decided to keep it because I feel it fills a gap I had with my other VSL licensed pianos (I have six and counting!). I'm not ready to say it's one of my favorite Stage B pianos (the 280VC is alone at the top of my personal list, followed by the Bluthner 1895 and 130 Upright), but I do enjoy playing the F212. I don't own the F308 as I prefer smaller stage pianos for the repertoire I play, but I've heard it and David's comment is, in my opinion, spot on.

    The Synchron engine is very flexible but it doesn't seem to allow individual note adjustments to be made global, or saved and subsequently loaded as you can with velocity curve adjustments. Unless I'm missing something, this means that everytime you switch to a different factory preset, you lose these overrides and have to manually reapply. This is significantly labor intensive. For the F212, which for whatever reason requires more note adjustments than most, it's a problem.

    If there is currently a way to do what I'm asking, please respond. Thanks -Jon

  • Hi Guys, I appreciate your discussion and observations regarding the F212. I agree, there is a softness of tone 2E - B. I am not much of a tweaker regarding the voicing. I enjoy the intimate sound of the F212 but I'm hesitating on purchasing it. I'm in the process of recording a solo piano project and selecting the right piano would be helpful with my inspiration. David thank you for the video, very helpful. It would be nice if the voicings could be file shared.

  • From a piano tuners point of view: As long you've not got your own hands at the real piano and turn the tuning hammer, it's actually impossible to express a serious opinion about the sound characteristics and the concret tuning of a certain key of a piano. There are many factors which influences the sound, so it's not just the main goal to get the three strings of a key in perfect float with the help of a tuning device.

    Without years of experience preparing pianos for artists on stage, one would be lost to find the optimum for tuning and voicing. Lucky us, our team holds such expertise. Saying that, it's finally always the piano itself, which defines the possibilities for a virtual instrument in regard of sound and tuning. That's why we've so many piano libraries in our portfolio:

    Best, Michael

  • Michael, I appreciate your input. And Michael, I would love to have all of the Synchron pianos, and one day I will. I'm just waiting on that package discount. 😄

  • I think David has a point. What I realised though is, that in the presets there are a number of tracks with activated compression.

    Once I had built my own preset - without any effects - I just love the sound. I've bought the F212. And I am very happy with it.

    I belong to that group of users who use software piano in order to practice piano playing. So I want to have the feeling as if I sat in front of a piano. I don't strive for too much room in the sound.

    Best wishes - and happy playing!

    Download "Fazioli 212"