26 May 2024 in Tools

The Best Piano Plugins for Ableton Live: Enhancing Your Sound with Synth and Piano Combinations

by nOzart 4.7 min reading time

As a producer deeply passionate about the evocative tones of pianos, I’ve explored numerous tools to perfect this sound in my tracks. If you're looking to elevate your music production, this article dives into some of the finest piano plugins available for Ableton Live.

As a producer, there's a special place in my heart for the rich, expressive sound of a piano, especially when combined with the futuristic tones of synthesizers. This blend often becomes my go-to sound, providing a perfect balance of warmth and innovation. My journey with piano plugins in Ableton Live has evolved significantly over the years, starting with the built-in tools of Ableton's Suite edition, experimenting with synthesizers like Serum, and now exploring professional-grade plugins like the BBC Symphony Orchestra Piano Professional. Here’s a comprehensive look at some of the best piano plugins available, each bringing something unique to the table.

Spitfire Audio Hans Zimmer Piano

Overview: Spitfire Audio's Hans Zimmer Piano is a powerhouse plugin that offers an incredibly detailed and expressive piano sound. Recorded at the legendary AIR Studios with a wide array of microphones, this plugin captures every nuance of a Steinway D concert grand piano.


Why It's Great for Ableton Live:
The Hans Zimmer Piano integrates seamlessly with Ableton Live, allowing you to layer its rich acoustic tones with your favorite synths. Its detailed samples and multiple mic positions give you a vast sonic palette to experiment with.

Native Instruments The Giant

Overview: Native Instruments offers a standout piano plugin with The Giant. This plugin features the sound of the world's biggest upright piano, providing a unique and powerful tone that's perfect for modern productions.


Why It's Great for Ableton Live: The Giant's massive sound can easily fill the mix, and its compatibility with Kontakt Player makes it easy to integrate into Ableton Live. Pairing this giant's sound with synth layers creates an epic, cinematic feel that can elevate any track.

Spectrasonics Keyscape

Overview: Spectrasonics Keyscape is a dream come true for keyboard enthusiasts. It offers an extensive collection of meticulously sampled keyboards, including grand pianos, uprights, and electric pianos.


Why It's Great for Ableton Live:
Keyscape’s diverse range of keyboard sounds allows you to blend traditional piano tones with modern synth textures effortlessly. This flexibility makes it a perfect companion for Ableton Live, where creativity and experimentation are key.

Arturia Piano V

Overview: Arturia Piano V uses physical modeling technology to recreate the sound of numerous classic pianos. This approach offers a high degree of flexibility in sound design and a lower system resource demand compared to sample-based plugins.


Why It's Great for Ableton Live:
Arturia Piano V’s modeling technology provides a versatile and responsive playing experience, perfect for live performance and studio work in Ableton Live. The ability to tweak every aspect of the piano’s sound means you can easily blend it with synths to create unique hybrid tones.

BBC Symphony Orchestra Piano Professional

Overview: Recently, I’ve been exploring the BBC Symphony Orchestra Piano Professional, which offers an incredibly authentic and dynamic piano sound, recorded at the world-renowned Maida Vale Studios.


Why It's Great for Ableton Live:
This plugin has quickly become a favorite in my setup. The BBC Symphony Orchestra Piano Professional provides a level of realism and expressiveness that is hard to match. Its integration with Ableton Live allows for seamless blending with both traditional orchestral instruments and modern synths, making it an invaluable tool for creating rich, textured compositions.


For producers like me, who love the dynamic interplay between the timeless sound of a piano and the cutting-edge tones of synthesizers, choosing the right piano plugin is crucial. My journey from using Ableton's built-in tools and simulating piano sounds with synths like Serum, to now utilizing professional plugins like the BBC Symphony Orchestra Piano Professional, has significantly enriched my production capabilities.

Experiment with these plugins, combine them with your favorite synths, and you’ll find yourself crafting sounds that are both deeply emotive and thrillingly modern. Happy producing!



Music Producer

Antwerp based DJ and music producer Olivier Arntz is active in the music business since the mid-1980s. As nOzart he is producing music in several genres without pinning himself down in any particular type though his style is often progressive, melodic, techno, deep house and chill tunes.

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“Without music, life would be a mistake.”

Friedrich Nietsche