UNIK

An old French upright piano with adjustable stereo width controls

The story

UNIK is an old French upright piano.

On the wood, we can read :
“Ancienne Maison P. SCHOTT & Cie
QUEREUIL Sénior
70 Faubourg St Honoré, PARIS”

My parents got this piano from an old shed, in the French countryside, 70 miles from Paris.
The owner was looking for someone to give it to for free.
He told us that the piano had been used for 20 years at the train station pub and then for 15 years without being played in that shed..
That’s all we know.

My parents live in a old house, in a small French village and this piano has found its place in the family living room.
I recorded it in the middle of the afternoon, in spring, with two Oktava microphones.
You can hear the sound of birds through the bright window sometimes.
I think that’s what makes it unique.

Brice

PS : This is my first Kontakt sampling and scripting. And Sorry for my bad english, as you can guess, I’m French !

Reviews for UNIK

  • Sound
  • Character
  • Playability
  • Inspiration
  • GUI

Leave a review to let others know what you thought of the instrument!

  • Weird panning choices, but great character

    As you open the instrument you will see a very unique and aesthetically pleasiing GUI. There are will help you tweak the sound a little bit, but beware, the knob labels are in French and I have no idea what they say.

    Also, I find that the hitbox - the way of controlling the stereo field - on the lower right is not very clear, especially if the mics are open wide - you need to grab it from the middle and pull down or up. The piano is very dynamic though and it has great character. The important problem is that the samples are noisy and you can really hear birds chirping as you play.

    The worst thing is though that in the Stereo setting, you will hear that the higher range is wrongly balanced to the left instead of the right, which is kind of a dealbreaker in many cases.

    Alex Raptakis01 December 2021
  • Unique UNIK

    The recording consistency of each note is top notch, I particularly enjoyed the natural ambience of the room. The GUI design is pleasing to the eye, and the parameters all lead you somewhere creative. A well executed example of what piano book stands for.. Good Job!

    Leon Price04 November 2021
  • Bright Tone which doesn't suit me much

    Although for the most part this piano is well sampled and programmed, I personally rarely reach for this kind of bright piano. The instrument is very dynamic and definitely has alot of character though. The recordings are very ambient and as mentioned you can hear bird song in some of the samples which can be really cool or not so cool depending on what you are using it for. I feel like the softer dynamic layers even though they are quiet dont sound soft enough in tone and also as alex mentioned theres some weird panning stuff going in with some of the higher notes. Overall this is a pretty good piano that people who are into bright pianos might really like. The GUI is also really well made and nice looking.

    septemberwalk07 November 2021
  • A Bright piano

    This instrument has a fun French GUI which has a unique method of determining with width of the instrument. There are three velocity layers in this instrument, but they are all quite bright and pretty hard hitting. This is sort of the anti-felt piano. There's a bunch of ambient birdsong in the samples as the samplist mentions. That may be your thing, but it may be a deal breaker for you depending on your tastes. The samplist has done a really good job following Christian Henson's suggestions about trimming the samples to capture the absolute beginning of the transients, but it has always felt very laggy to me, and I have always preferred much tighter editing. You might feel differently. If you're looking for a romping, stomping rock n' roll piano, this might be just the thing for you!

    Sam Ecoff05 November 2021