Piapro Studio Teaser Site Open

With the release of KAITO V3, Crypton has set up a special site for Piapro Studio, the bundled VOCALOID editing software package. Currently there is not much there except for a link to the original demonstration video and a list of frequently asked questions. The FAQ page does include some useful information.

For example, it appears that Piapro Studio may glitch audio-wise when playing a sound for the first time, although repeated playback uses cached information so it does not continue to glitch; they hope to ameliorate this with a subsequent patch. Furthermore, it appears that Tiny VOCALOID Editor may need to be started once after installation in order to activate the KAITO sound bank so that Piapro Studio can see it. Currently, Piapro Studio seems to only support a 44.1kHz sampling rate, although future updates are expected to add others. Since VOCALOID synthesis is very processor-intensive, they recommend setting a long buffer size.

Crypton has also released patches to Piapro Studio already, which can be downloaded from their support page; people who cannot get their auto-update to work are recommended to download a patch from that page. The updates also add support for VSQX export and VSQ import, and they fix several bugs as well. Currently, the software cannot import MIDI files, although they’re investigating the possibility of adding that in a future update.

Lastly, Piapro Studio is a VSTi plugin, and thus it requires to be run from within a VST host, such as the provided Studio One Piapro Edition. It is also currently only a 32-bit plugin, which means the host application has to be 32-bit as well, although Windows itself can be 64-bit. They are looking into adding 64-bit support at a later time through updates. Furthermore, as many people already know, the VOCALOID engine does not run on Mac, and thus Piapro Studio will not run on Mac either, as they use Yamaha’s API. Lastly, the FAQ also seems to imply that Piapro Studio was written on top of OpenGL and requires version 3.0 or later for proper display.

17 thoughts on “Piapro Studio Teaser Site Open”

        1. If my guess about their using a OpenGL-based UI toolkit is true, then there are two parties involved — Crypton and the UI toolkit creator. Crypton could have simply chosen the UI toolkit because it was easy to use and looked nice (it does look a lot nicer than VOCALOID3 Editor). The UI toolkit creator could’ve chosen OpenGL because it was portable and had a clean way of specifying graphics operations. However, this does not necessarily mean that Crypton chose OpenGL for those same reasons.

          1. Perhaps another reason to use OpenGL is that it isn’t burdened by proprietary licensing restrictions or royalty fees that would have added a bit more to the cost of the product.

  1. I really don’t get why they added this to KAITO. Most people who use Vocaloid already have a DAW of some sort so it kinda seems unnecessary unless I am missing something about it that makes it more then a DAW. (Before you say it has the advantage of a pseudo rewire for V3 there is already a plugin for V3 that allows it to have a rewire function via a VSTi system.) I at least get the Megpoid VSTi that allow for better fine tuning of vocals that will be released with her.

    1. I’m guessing they’re aiming this at beginners and that they also wanted to make a good standalone package. Furthermore, Piapro Studio fixes a lot of problems with VOCALOID3 Editor, and no one is forcing people to use the DAW they provide. In fact, you could even not use Piapro Studio if you choose to, and go back to VOCALOID3 Editor.

        1. Why do you still think it’s somewhat unnecessary? Instead of doing what they believe to be a half-baked job by only releasing the sound bank, they are releasing a full-featured software kit to make VOCALOID music, with no additional software necessary.

          I guess one might complain because this made the software more expensive and made it come out later, but I think it’s a good tradeoff if it gets more people into producing VOCALOID music.

          1. It just seems like a complete gimmick that was added on at the last second (Kinda like Luka’s english bank). From what I have seen it seems like just a watered down version of Cake walk. (Kinda like the online studio PowerFx tried to jump start with Big Al and Sweet Ann during the Christmas that failed miserably) Also any of the features that it does for vocaloid are doable in just the V3 editor ( Like the vibratos easily doable by hand using the PIT,PBS, and the pencil tool. followed by Crtl+C and Crtl+V if you are feeling lazy)

          2. There are two things added to this release that makes it different from a typical VOCALOID3 sound bank — Piapro Studio and the DAW, Studio One. They do not appear to me to be added last minute, as it takes time to create a software package like Piapro Studio, including the time it took to design the user interface and underlying audio architecture. Piapro Studio appears to also require a host, so therefore the decision to add a DAW to the package must also have not been a last minute decision, as it is dependent on the design of Piapro Studio.

            You also refer to these as gimmicks, which would imply that these two items are not useful in practice and were only used to bring attention to the product as some sort of marketing ploy. As I have stated before, the inclusion of a fully working DAW with a fairly standard interface makes this the ideal beginner package, since otherwise the customer would have to procure instrumental music elsewhere. Despite being a watered down version of Studio One, it looks to be fairly capable and comes with its own plugin bundle, which should be good enough to get a lot of people going with making instrumentals. While inferior to the top of the line SONAR package, it’s probably a lot more powerful than Cakewalk Pro Audio before its name was changed to SONAR.

            Furthermore, Piapro Studio fixes a lot of *user interface* problems present in VOCALOID3 Editor. As for your example, drawing vibrato manually using PIT, PBS and then using copy+paste is imprecise and wastes the user’s time, and even if this were 100% precise, such detailed control is not needed most of the time anyway. Sure, you can also connect VOCALOID3 Editor to another DAW using a specific plugin, but that method is still a hack and not a proper solution. Sure, I can technically go write my own virtual analog software synth, but it would be a waste of my time since the software I already have is good enough for the job, even if it doesn’t offer me absolute control. The more efficient and streamlined the interface and setup, the more time the user can spend on creative aspects of song production rather than mundane drudgery. I do not believe Piapro Studio is more technically capable than VOCALOID3 Editor, but I do believe it can be a lot easier to use, making it more productive for many people.

            Thus, I would have to disagree with your assertion since your reasoning doesn’t seem to make much sense to me. Besides, if we were to talk about gimmicks, then the FormantShift VST that comes with Megpoid English would be a lot more gimmicky than the inclusion of Piapro Studio and Studio One. Formant shifting can be done to a degree inside VOCALOID3 Editor using GEN, and any decent implementation or clone of AutoTune would have this functionality built-in. FormantShift is also available for free to anyone who owns INTERNET’s DAW package and/or their VOCALOID2/3 sound banks anyway.

          3. @hightrancese

            So let me see if I understand you. According to you Piapro Studio could be marketed all on its own as “a software package” even if KAITO V3 was not released with it? Yet why then is it only included with KAITO and not for sale anywhere else on Crypton’s site? Also why is the DAW is from Studio One but it is highlighted that it is the Piapro Studio version? Well here is why. Because it is meant to look like a great deal when in reality it is not. The studio and DAW give you no where near as much as a full DAW program would and is only meant to lure you in. That’s called enticing a customer. Thus a gimmick.

            As for “fixing” Vocaloid editor problems it really isn’t. All of the vibrato’s in Piapro Studio are the exact same as the one included in Vocaloid 3. They just make it so that you can do multiply ones at the same time. Also, hand drawing vibratos is known to give a much more realistic tone to Vocaloids then just giving a default computerized vibrato like what Piapro and the Vocaloid preset one do. (Which is why Vocalistner vibratos are so realistic but I also consider it too a gimmick since if you have enough training you can do that on your own) Furthermore, you keep saying that it is okay that you don’t have control over making your own synth. That’s a problem because eventually other people will start using the same synths as you and your stuff will become watered down and generic. Kinda like Dubstep and how 90% of it sound exactly the same. Creating an original song includes fine tuning vocals and creating your own sound for instruments for it to be unique.

            As for Formant shift, the VST doesn’t mess with GEN. (That’s gender setting so why you even brought it up I don’t know) The Formant shift physically changes the vocal sound so that you can get a particular accent or to help with keeping the words clean. (God knows Megpoid english needs at times) Which in a way, yes I could consider it a gimmick too since if you use CLE, OPE, PIT, and PBS you can do that same to an extent. However, it at least is designed to help fine tune the program instead of just throwing on extra software that is only a watered down version of the real thing.

            So overall yes it is a gimmick meant to lure people into a false sense of security thinking they are going to get a great deal when it is not. Also Yamaha also does encourage people to build Plug-ins for there product which is why they even offer the plug in builder on there site for free. So considering a plug in built by someon a hack is like calling the patches for vocaloid 3 that have come out hacks.

          4. I am not sure how you can logically derive that I claim Piapro Studio can be made standalone from the statements that I have made thus far. In either case, I believe Piapro Studio is powerful enough that it can stand on its own as a standalone software package, assuming Crypton went through the additional work of testing it with other sound banks. Since VOCALOID3 Editor is being sold as a standalone package, there’s no technical reason why Piapro Studio cannot; it is more a marketing and time allocation decision in my opinion.

            Furthermore, it’s obvious that the Studio One that comes with KAITO V3 is not the full version, but that does not mean it is so cut-down as to not be usable in practical applications. Not everyone a needs torque wrench to turn a screw. A “cut-down” DAW that provides functionality on par with the top-of-the-law DAW from a decade back is surely a usable product.

            Therefore, you have only provided one possible reason to why they included the two products, and a somewhat convoluted chain to claiming that they are gimmicks. It is true that Studio One Piapro Edition is not the top-of-the-line product from Presonus, but you do not provide enough proof that the only reason this happens to be the case is that it is designed to “lure” a customer in, implying that the customer is not actually getting what was advertised. Furthermore, enticing a customer is not the same as a gimmick. Providing something of additional value to sell a product is a mainstay of product development; it is only a gimmick if the advertised feature doesn’t provide practical value.

            Your arguments so far have not been sound enough to establish that the inclusion of Piapro Studio and Studio One Piapro Edition does not add practical value to the product. The simplest explanation for the inclusion of the two is that they wish to make their product more appealing to fledgling creators; your explanation implies Crypton is intentionally adding in useless features as a way to entice people to buy their product, incurring additional development time and costs in the process.

            If you have used VOCALOID3 Editor extensively, you will find that it has a lot of jarring user interface problems, some of which have been fixed in patches, making the program somewhat less of a headache to use. It still has a lot of problems that make its use less than optimal, including strange note selection mechanics (why do notes selected with Ctrl+A not allow transposition using mouse drag?), expensive UI drawing code, inability to modify properties of multiple notes at once, wasteful access of the vocal data bank and processor-intensive re-rendering of audio.

            As for hand drawing vibratos, unless you want something really strange, you should be able to get most of the way there using custom vibrato curves in the vibrato menu. There is no need to draw PIT directly; if you want to humanize, it’s much more efficient to have a JobPlugin do that instead of manually doing it. It’s possible to create very nice-sounding vibrato without going to manual PIT drawing, and if you think about it, what is vibrato other than a low-frequency variable oscillation in mostly PIT? Why would you need a high bandwidth input method (i.e. PIT drawing) to present the engine with that type of information?

            As for synths, if you’ve done sound design extensively, you’ll note that it’s the *patches* that determine the final sound and not just the synth engine. A lot of dubstep sounds the same because people want that sound and design their patches that way; for example, you can make that common dubstep “talking” sound using any 3 operator FM synthesis engine that allows you to have the sum of two operators modulate the frequency of the third, carrier one. There is no need to write your own synthesis engine to create a new patch that sounds nothing like what people have been using, just as there’s no real need to deal with detail that ends up contributing a minor fraction to the final sound in VOCALOID if you want to create your own sound. There’s already a lot of customization available, so there’s no point in focusing on fine details when the coarse-level things can be modified with greater effect. To spend a lot of time on fine details means a good chance of missing the elephant in the room.

            I have also not claimed that FormantShift the VST plugin modifies GEN inside the VOCALOID3 engine; what I said was that it performs a role similar to modifying GEN. You are mistaken about what FormantShift does if you believe it can be duplicated using CLE, OPE, PIT and PBS without GEN. FormantShift does pretty much what its name implies — shifting the formant resonances in the resonant filter emulating the vocal cavity. It is not usable for generating a particular accent but rather for simulating something like changing the vocal cavity size.

            I do agree with you that KAITO V3’s pricing may be a bit unfortunate for people who already have a DAW and VOCALOID3 Editor, so perhaps for those people, Piapro Studio may not be worth the premium that they are asking for. However, for people who want to try something new, I don’t see that as such a bad price — it’s the same list price as Miku.

            Lastly, you are also confused about the plugins involved with regards to V3Sync. V3Sync is a VST plugin that plugs into VOCALOID3 Editor, since the latter came as a VST host. The plugin then talks to a ReWire host at the same time, bridging information between the two. That is not how the VST plugin system was intended to be used and this setup is thus a hack. What Yamaha encourages is development of JobPlugins, which has nothing to do with VST. JobPlugins talk to VOCALOID3 through an internal Lua interpreter and are only allowed to modify certain things such as note positions, lengths and parameters inside the currently selected track. There is no “plugin builder” on their site. They provide an API document with some example Lua scripts; the document is a bit ambiguous at times and sometimes you just have to try stuff out to see how they are supposed to work. The most complicated product using that API is VocaListener, but VocaListener is technically a separate UI that talks to VOCALOID3 Editor through the Lua bridge, and VocaListener also uses the VOCALOID3 engine directly through dynamic linking, something that a normal user has no access to.

          5. Hmmm interesting enough argument. I still think it is a stupid gimmick since it is so watered down and more of a waste but you have shown that it is a least good enough for beginners. However I will still have to disagree that the preset vibratos and even accents in Vocaloid 3 or in Piapro Studio are good. They sound incredibly fake and computer generated while hand made ones sound for more realistic. (I know VO has entire guides and discussions on how to make hand drawn vibratos sound more realistic) I also would disagree that DAW that comes with KAITO can keep up with a true DAW but for a beginner I suppose it at least helps.

          6. I keep reading this version of Studio One Artist that comes with KAITO V3 as being a watered down gimmicky DAW compared to others. I have to wonder about that opinion. PreSonus makes four versions (Free, Artist, Producer, and Pro) of their program depending on the user’s needs and budget. Studio One Artist as a standalone is $100. The Pro version is $500. Studio One isn’t a gimmicky DAW and various reviews seem to agree. (Even their Free version is pretty useful, and that one should feel gimmicky, but it isn’t.)

  2. Just wondering if anybody bought the Hatsune Miku v3 English Bundle and if the had any issues with Piapro Studio.
    I was unable to install PS even though Studio 1 and Tiny Vocaloid Editor went in fine.

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