Free Patch Collection for Ivory II: "Secret Piano"
ILIO is proud to introduce a one-of-a-kind patch collection for Ivory II accentuating the versatility of its engine. "Secret Pianos" is a free pack of presets for Synthogy's Ivory II pianos that stretch the boundaries of what is a traditional piano sound. This is a completely FREE download and is from ILIO.com/free-secret-piano. Keep in mind you must own an Ivory II virtual piano in order to use them.
Now For Ivory II - Grand Pianos!
We're proud to announce that Secret Pianos is now optimized for Synthogy's most popular collection, Ivory II - Grand Pianos! Because of the three versatile Grand Pianos in this collection (Bösendorfer 290 Imperial Grand, German Steinway D 9' Concert Grand and Yamaha C7 Grand) we were able to draw a wide variety of sounds out of the included keysets. Some pianos like the German D are darker in nature, so in this collection we subtly, and in some cases, extremely emphasized its natural character. Legendary pianos like the Bösendorfer 290 were fun to timbre shift out of character, drench in reverb and turn evocative and moody - a far cry away from its natural timbre. The Yamaha C7 was especially fun—using Synthogy's powerful engine, we transformed this piano up and down—from a pop classic, to sounding like a piano underwater, or something that might fit in your next film score.
For Ivory II - Studio Grands
The Bosendorfer 225 and Steinway B of Ivory II-Studio Grands are the pinnacle of Synthogy's sampling expertise. While beautiful sounding in their purest form, the Secret Pianos collection extends dimension and the extraordinary character of these instruments. The tones of this collection are sure to set the mood for an emotional film score, a radio-ready pop tune, hip-hop track, or perhaps a more 'quirky' piece. The 25 presets specifically designed for Ivory II-Studio Grands undoubtably provide plenty of versatility and new inspiration.
For Ivory II - Upright Pianos
To design the presets of this pack, ILIO stretched the boundaries of what is a traditional piano. Heavily inspired by certain ambient artists of today such as Jon Hopkins, Ólafur Arnalds, Hammock, and more, Secret Piano includes soft, mellow, dark, and bright piano tones, with liberal use of warping reverb, a few synth layers, and even includes some sounds decidedly un-piano.
Or Use With Any Ivory II Piano!
While specifically optimized for Studio Grands and Upright Pianos, you can also pair these presets with all other Ivory II collections for even more exploration. Simply load the Secret Piano preset that you'd like, then switch to another Keyset in Ivory II's window.
Sound Design Process
ILIO is made up of an eclectic group of musicians, composers and sound designers. The Secret Piano collection is a collaborative project by multiple musicians/employees at ILIO in an effort to demonstrate just how versatile Ivory II can be. With the naturally beautiful sound of Ivory II pianos it's tempting to make conservative adjustments to preserve the piano's authenticity. We discovered that making "grand" adjustments in Ivory II's GUI actually accentuated the character of the pianos. There are plenty of adjustments within Ivory II that made a massive impact on these sounds. Let's check out a few that stand out:
Timbre is a fancy word for the character or quality of a musical sound or voice. Simply, the Timbre Shift feature in Ivory II allows you to "borrow" the timbre of adjacent keys without changing the key's root pitch. Check out the settings of the "Soft Piano" patch made by Product Support Specialist and video game composer Austin Haynes:
Most notably, this patch uses Timbre Shift to essentially "shift" the keyboard down an octave (notice it's set at -12 semitones) while keeping the same pitch of the struck key. This results in a soft, dark tone that feels as if it has weight to it. Alternatively, you will find a patch from ILIO's Roger Mawer titled "Banjichord", where Timbre Shift is used in the opposite way to turn a conventional piano sound into that resembles a banjo or harpsichord!
Timbre shift is great for setting ambiance! In a patch titled "Water Mystery", Product Specialist Tim Miles uses Timbre Shift to shift the Timbre of the keys down a complete octave, resulting in a dark, nostalgic, and mysterious sound. This coupled with the built in chorus effect in Ivory II results in a 'wet' tone.
Curved Space Reverb
The curved space reverb in Ivory II is a remarkably special type of reverb that creates movement. Take sound designer Mike "MIDIhead" Babbitt's patch "Hopkins Bright Ambiance" where this ethereal reverb is liberally applied to the Modern Upright from Ivory II's Upright Pianos collection. This reverb coupled with a band boost in the 1.5k and high shelf boost at 2.8k allows the higher frequencies to echo and dance within the space provided by the reverb.
The Shimmer Effect
Shimmer is a powerful feature in Ivory 2.5 that provides unique control over the decay/sustain part of the piano note. Positive values extend the decay of the higher harmonics of the piano notes played. More extreme positive values can also yield some interesting exaggerated effects. Negative values will shorten the decay of the higher harmonics while extreme negative values produce a muted effect. In the patch "Forgotten Dream", ILIO's co-founder and passionate pianist Mark Hiskey utilizes the "extremeness" of the Shimmer effect. This combined with a synth layer transposed an octave higher and the curved space reverb generates a glistening tail at the end of each keystroke that feels like you have an ultra-high soprano choir doubling every note!
Of course, the above parameters and effects are only a few of the features to utilize when sound designing in the Ivory II engine. Download the completely free "Secret Piano" patch collection for Ivory II and try these patches out for yourself! Experimentation with other Ivory II pianos is highly encouraged.
We hope that you enjoy these free patches and you have as much fun playing them as we had making them for you.
Yours in Music,
Your ILIO Sales and Support Team
I don’t hear anything when I load a patch!
The Secret Piano patches are designed to work with specific Ivory pianos. If you load a patch and there is no sound when you play, you have loaded a patch for an Ivory piano you do not own. Every patch contains a piano Keyset from a specific Ivory II product. (See illustration.) If the Keyset field indicates that no piano is present, you have two options. You may either purchase and install the intended Ivory II product, or select a Keyset from an Ivory II piano you already own. Though every patch was designed with a specific Keyset in mind, you may get surprisingly good results by substituting Keysets!