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KRONOS Polyphony Problems
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shock410



Joined: 20 Apr 2012
Posts: 24

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 3:10 am    Post subject: KRONOS Polyphony Problems Reply with quote

I am a KORG user since the M1....never really had any polyphony problems like I'm having with the original KRONOS. I'm hoping a firmware fix can help this but I seriously doubt KORG will even take this serious. When stacking a few EXi synths(Stab Saw, Double Screamer or Unison Stab Saw, to name a few) or Electric Pianos split with 2 brass sounds layered, I'm getting MAJOR note dropouts. I've done everything that some posted in a recent forum post and still I'm getting dropouts. I've had to resort to sampling chords to one key in order to help out. And though it does help, I shouldn't have to do that. I have the latest firmware. I'm not taxing the RAM in any way. Just need help. I've turned off the level meters, as well. I'm sure Jordan Rudess isn't having polyphony issues....lol. Any help would be appreciated.
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NIO0850
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 4:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is no fix... I even updated the ram, put in a SSD that had 2x the write and read speeds. Updated all the firmwares, fan update and OS updates. Like the sounds were great but the sensitivity and blending of the notes seemed very unrealistic. Note drop outs were most noticed on the big sampled pianos. Sold my Kronos and either I will buy a Nord 3 or very patiently wait for a Kronos successor. I have owned 5 flagship Korg workstations and want to keep my business with Korg.
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SanderXpander
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Joined: 29 Jul 2011
Posts: 7860

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 6:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

All you need to do is be aware of how CPU intensive the various engines and features are. That's no "fix", obviously there are limits and they're easy to reach if you ignore all that, but you can definitely get around without "major" note dropouts. E.g. I've never ever had them on the "big sampled pianos". I'm a professional pianist, it's not like I only play three notes at a time. I don't wantonly stack thick synths on top of each other to "fatten" a sound either though.

Last edited by SanderXpander on Fri Jan 29, 2016 4:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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tcornishmn
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Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 193
Location: St. Paul, MN

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Guys,

The Kronos has more polyphony capability than almost any keyboard on the planet. That said, the keyboard is flexible enough that you can burn it all up in just a note or two if you load too much up.

Every layer that simultaneously sounds eats up multiple notes of polyphony, depending on what's going on. Using the performance meters tab will show you just how much you are using. You can use this tool to see what sounds are killing you and probably pick other ones that sound 90% the same but are easier on polyphony. Usually the eXs ones are worse than the eXi ones in this way. There are some pads I've played with that take 8 voices per key press - that's going to take a bite out. If you are burning 12 notes per key which can happen with poorly chosen patches, that means you get about 12 keys pressed before you are stealing.

The Kronos note stealing engine is as good as any I've used as it tries to figure out what notes are contributing the least - i.e. if they are in decay, etc.

Resampling these really heavy things is a good way to manage this situation if you really need all that piled up, but for everything I've needed to do for my work I've been able to manage by slimming the patches down or doing less. Some patches have layers or nuances that are barely heard the can be turned off to save pretty major polyphony.
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MusicianSickness
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Joined: 06 Dec 2015
Posts: 87
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like your pushing the kronos to the extreme. Good luck going to another brand, kronos is king i can assure you.
If you have the need for such complex stacks of sounds you are better off sampling your creations and reload to a bank...an easy easy fix.
Kronos sampler is intoxicating.
Cheers
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NIO0850
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If Korg is King? Why do so many Real professionals play Nord Roland and Yamaha? Professional artists have all the money in the world and they dont own a Kronos. I think Korg has a way to go before they get it right. The Kronos pianos sound good but the sensitivity is all wrong and the pianos cut out and the pianos do not resonate properly together. Right now I like the Nord a lot better. It plays, feels and sounds like a real piano. Professionals play Nord.
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GregC
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Joined: 15 May 2002
Posts: 8183
Location: Discovery Bay (San Francisco Bay Area)

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

NIO0850 wrote:
If Korg is King? Why do so many Real professionals play Nord Roland and Yamaha? Professional artists have all the money in the world and they dont own a Kronos. I think Korg has a way to go before they get it right. The Kronos pianos sound good but the sensitivity is all wrong and the pianos cut out and the pianos do not resonate properly together. Right now I like the Nord a lot better. It plays, feels and sounds like a real piano. Professionals play Nord.


oh ? I thought the Kronos pianos sounded ' thin and plasticy'

I suppose the Pros that use a Kronos on stage should hang up their pro badge, too Wink
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SanderXpander
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Joined: 29 Jul 2011
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let's not get bogged down in which brand is more professional. All the big players make quality stuff, a lot of it comes down to features and taste. I'm a professional and I sold my Nord partly because I didn't like the piano. The interface is great though. I needed more features and wanted a better piano so I went for a Kronos. Nobody in the store checked if I was a a pro or not.

The issue at hand is polyphony. The Kronos has lots but it also gives you lots and lots of options to stack sounds and even voices (unison mode in the EXis for instance). Adding another layer to your sound doesn't always (or even usually) make your sound better, just mushier. Learn to pick the right sound, apply judicious EQ and perhaps some chorus if you really really must have it sound thick/wide. Most of the time you won't have any polyphony issues at all.
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burningbusch
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Joined: 30 Jan 2005
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Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

According to Wiki here are the pros using the Nord Stage:

Derek Sherinian
Bill Payne
Scott Kinsey
The Ark's Jens Andersson (who played a Nord Stage 2 on the band's final tour)
Bryan Ferry
Elbow

Here are the pros using the Korg Kronos:

Jim Gilmour (Saga)
Derek Sherinian
Greg Phillinganes (Michael Jackson: The Immortal World Tour)
Herbie Hancock
Jordan Rudess (Dream Theater)
Chris Lowe (Pet Shop Boys)
Eloy Fritsch
Tuomas Holopainen (Nightwish)
David Sancious (Bruce Springsteen, Peter Gabriel)
Jem Godfrey
Omar Edwards (Jay-Z, Rihanna, The Weeknd)
Jon Shone (One Direction)
Mike Finnigan
Spike Edney
Larry Goldings
Jeff Babko (Jimmy Kimmel Live!)
David Tench & Steve Turner (The Voice UK)
Eldar Djangirov
Daniel Jones (Dr. Dre, Janet Jackson, Demi Lovato)
Tom Coster
Adam Blackstone
Cory Henry (Snarky Puppy)
Simon Mavin (Hiatus Kaiyote)
Jae Deal (Janet Jackson, Diane Warren)
Brett Tuggle (Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, Fleetwood Mac)
Frank McComb
Jeff Lorber
Richard Tee
Lyle Mays (Pat Metheny Group)
Russell Ferrante
Adam Wakeman
Felix Cavaliere (The Rascals, Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band)
Vangelis
Keith Emerson
George Duke
Guy Fletcher (Dire Straits, Mark Knopfler)
Bob Katsionis (Firewind, OUTLOUD)
Thomas DeFelice (AJAR Project, Gambrinus)
Peter Gabriel

Busch.
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CEB



Joined: 26 Feb 2015
Posts: 41
Location: Illinois

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 5:07 pm    Post subject: Re: KRONOS Polyphony Problems Reply with quote

shock410 wrote:
I am a KORG user since the M1....never really had any polyphony problems like I'm having with the original KRONOS. I'm hoping a firmware fix can help this but I seriously doubt KORG will even take this serious. When stacking a few EXi synths(Stab Saw, Double Screamer or Unison Stab Saw, to name a few) or Electric Pianos split with 2 brass sounds layered, I'm getting MAJOR note dropouts. I've done everything that some posted in a recent forum post and still I'm getting dropouts. I've had to resort to sampling chords to one key in order to help out. And though it does help, I shouldn't have to do that. I have the latest firmware. I'm not taxing the RAM in any way. Just need help. I've turned off the level meters, as well. I'm sure Jordan Rudess isn't having polyphony issues....lol. Any help would be appreciated.


Running Mono? If not, have you tried that on your particular problem combis?
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mikeyd
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Joined: 19 Nov 2007
Posts: 390
Location: California

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 5:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Busch my man😎
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tcornishmn
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Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 193
Location: St. Paul, MN

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

NIO0850 wrote:
If Korg is King? Why do so many Real professionals play Nord Roland and Yamaha? Professional artists have all the money in the world and they dont own a Kronos. I think Korg has a way to go before they get it right. The Kronos pianos sound good but the sensitivity is all wrong and the pianos cut out and the pianos do not resonate properly together. Right now I like the Nord a lot better. It plays, feels and sounds like a real piano. Professionals play Nord.


I have a friend with a Nord Stage 2 and I've played it. I think it's underwhelming - especially for the price tag. It does about 4% of what the Kronos does, and I'm not a fan of the Nord sounds - especially the ones it doesn't have that I need.

Having polyphony limits isn't a bug - it's a physical limitation of the processing power in the board, and every keyboard ever made have polyphony limitations. If you dumb down the patches so the pads sound like a Nord or an M1, you'll find that you no longer have polyphony issues. I perform with fairly extensive layers - usually the Berlin Grand, CX3, and 2-3 other patches running in a combi and I don't have problems with sound-affecting note stealing. There are a few pads I have to avoid as they are not conducive to layering due to polyphony requirements, but I can nearly always get what I want with no loss of playability.

If you prefer some element of a different product - great. I'm sure Nord and/or Yamaha would love your money.

As to Korg's future plans - maybe polyphony will be increased, and I doubt anyone would complain if they did. It has gone up slightly through the Kronos generations, but the law of large numbers eventually comes to bite you - even if Korg doubles the polyphony from 140 to 280 voices for HD-1, adding one more layer with an 8-voice per key sound will chew through it very quickly.

Take a look at the performance meter tab for the sounds you're layering and you'll quickly find out who the offending patches are. In the couple cases where I've had to look at this, it's been relatively easy to find ways to simplify it without drastically affecting the sound quality - especially since when the patch is loaded up with 5 other things going on at the same time, you're unlikely to hear the nuances anyway.
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tcornishmn
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Joined: 25 May 2005
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Location: St. Paul, MN

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 6:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just for fun I looked up the specs of the Nord Piano 3. It has 40 stereo voices or 60 mono voices for the piano section, and a whopping 15 voices for the synth section.

The Kronos 2 has 100 dual-stereo voices, equivalent to 400 mono voices for the SGX-2 piano engine, 140 voices for the HD-1 sample playback engine (comparable to the "sample synth" thing on the Nord), 80 AL-1 voices, etc.

It's not even close. Anything the Kronos gets bogged down with can't even be attempted on the Nord, as the Nord's architecture is much more simplistic. Conversely, anything the Nord can do is a piece of cake for the Kronos.

I understand that there are differences in people's preferences related to sound quality and keyboard action and that's fine. Blaming what's essentially user error for not understanding how voice assignment works as a "bug" isn't reality.
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jeebustrain
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Joined: 24 Jan 2011
Posts: 1283
Location: In a Roger Dean painting

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

most of the times I've seen polyphony problems with layered patches, it's been due to 2 things

1. Riding the sustain pedal forever

2. Unison mode on too many of the timbres. Anytime you have unison mode turned on, you're utilizing up to 8x the expected polyphony for that single voice. If you have that layered behind 5 other synth patches, you're not even going to hear it anyway, so just turn it off.
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NIO0850
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 8:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I sold my Kronos 61 and do not regret it. I sold it for $2100 so Im happy about 2years of use with very little loss. Im ready for whats next. Have you ever seen inside of a Kronos? It looks like $500 of production cost. The stock SSD is very cheap thin and looks like a prototype of the first SSd ever created. Smile I mean if you are spending $3000 on a keyboard it should at least have the same quality screen of a $50 tablet. A Sony PS4 for $300 has 100x the processing power. Get my point of view? Its the year 2016 not 1999. We need a new flagship with current technology.


Im so happy I skipped the Oasys. I feel bad for those people.
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