Updated: Feb 17
Virtual Piano: A new dimension of performing music.
As time goes by, humanity has experienced many changes in technology. This has led us to have the urge to be constantly adapting to what is coming up next.
The uncertainty of what gadget composers and pianists might need leads developers to create some of the most amazing and intricate technological resources for them to adapt.
One of the most used modern gadgets in music production might be Virtual Keyboards.
Online piano keyboard
What is understood by virtual keyboard is that it is a software used either on the phone, computer or tablet that copies the look and usage of a standard keyboard.
It usually works by displaying the keyboard on the computer screen and the user has to point and click to the desired keys to activate and write what they need. This allows inputting the characters without the need of using a physical keyboard.
In many occasions, the virtual keyboard is a great resource for people who suffer from a disability handicap to operate more comfortably.
The virtual keyboards come in different forms:
A touch- screen keyboard that lays out on the device’s screen
A Projected keyboard piano(can be projected to any flat surface)
On Augmented Reality
To know a bit more about this intricate world check out this link
Full Virtual Piano and Music
A virtual Keyboard can also work as a piano that is operated by a computer and signal flow. It works as an acoustic piano. However, instead of operating on the acoustic ambience, it works electronically.
The method of working with virtual keyboards allows the composer or pianist who is operating them more flexibility when composing.
As it generates a signal flow which is later recorded on the computer, the composer can edit and tweak this sound as much as he likes and come up with very interesting sonorities for his compositions.
The virtual keyboard comes in different shapes and sizes. It can be a software plugin that works on the computer like this one in here.
The term “virtual keyboard piano” may seem generic, however, there are many more components from which this gadget depends on to work.
Virtual Piano Keyboard as an APP
Some users might prefer playing around or working from a smaller device because they are working remotely or do not have access to a large computerized system yet. Therefore the virtual keyboard app was created.
This method of playing is also more comfortable and fast for those users who highly enjoy playing some music on the spot.
Virtual Keyboard as VST
VST stands for “Virtual Studio Technology”. It is an audio plugin software that works as a virtual keyboard in a more complex manner.
The VST integrates software synthesizers and sound effect units into the virtual keyboard function.
This variation of the virtual keyboard is mainly used by composers because its components allow the user to change and edit the sound in full detail.
The system works with other hardware components:
The Midi Keyboard
The MIDI keyboard basically works as a virtual keyboard, however, it is built with buttons, wheels and sliders to allow the player to adjust the sound and signal flow level.
It can also be run by a physical keyboard that is attached to the computer with a USB cable. Every time a note played on the MIDI keyboard is shown on the DAW on the computer.
The MIDI keyboard usually looks like this example below:
The Buttons on the top right of the image show the knobs that control the pitch and volume of the signal flow, while the squared buttons on the left are used to design a drum or rhythmical pattern.
It typically looks like a piano-style electronic keyboard that connects to a computer, an amplifier or any other electronic device used to operate sound.
DAW and Digital Workstation
The DAW refers to “Digital Audio Workstation”. This is the electronic device installed in the computer, and it is used to record the signal flow of the MIDI keyboard.
The DAW is configurated from a single software program on the computer.
Normally a Digital Workstation is needed to operate music electronically and use the virtual keyboard.
The digital station is composed of a MIDI Keyboard, a computer, a DAW and an interface processor.
Typically, the DAW looks like the picture below:
Top Five online keyboard / virtual piano:
1.Online Pianist : https://www.onlinepianist.com/virtual-piano
2.Virtual Piano: https://virtualpiano.net/
4.Apronus: https://www.apronus.com/music/flashpiano.htm (With sustain and recording options)
5.Recursive Arts: https://recursivearts.com/virtual-piano/ (With songs to learn online !)