Crypton Future Media, who makes the popular Vocaloid Hatsune Miku, announced an English version earlier this year, and also announced a bundle of the English version with new versions of the older voice banks for an upgrade price for those who own previous versions.
Since I own the older voice banks, I was intrigued. I haven’t given up on my grammar music project yet, even if it is on the shelf for now.
The deal is that if you owned and registered both previous editions, you could get the bundle for ~$150 US.
The bundle comes with a special edition of PreSonus’ Studio One DAW, so it gets a new user in the door of using a DAW. It also comes with Crypton’s new VST, Piapro Studio, that will handle its Vocaloid voice banks inside of any DAW that can use VSTs.
The only downside to Piapro Studio is that for now it only handles Crypton’s voice banks, and that’s minor. You could always create a track with Miku or any other Crypton voice bank, then output it in VSQX format to the Yamaha editor, then change the voice to the voice bank you need to use, and export it out as a stem.
I wanted to get the Yamaha Vocaloid VST plugin for Cubase, but this makes things easier, and saves me another $100 or so. It also comes with some extra VST plugins.
All in all, it’s a great deal, and for beginners, it’s great starter package.
There’s a catch of sorts. You have to have a Japanese address to get the upgrade bundle at this price.
To be fair, they have a US distributor, and that’s where a this restriction comes from. But the US distributor isn’t selling the bundle at this time. I don’t know when they’re going to sell it. Right now, the cost of the English bank from the US company is as much as the cost of the whole bundle from Crypton.
After some talking with customer support, I got myself a Japanese address at Tenso, who will gladly ship it for me. I set up an account with them, and voila! I have an address in Japan now.
There is another caveat: I won’t get support from the US distributor. I’ll have to get support from Japan. I am totally okay with that, because the Japanese customer support has been great.
Now I just have to wait for the software to be released on the 26th or so, and I’ll get it a few days later. Can’t wait.