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Synthesia

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Synthesia is a popular piano program made by Nicholas Piegdon. It was the original program that was widely used to play black MIDIs. Nowadays with better alternatives such as Piano From AboveMIDITrail, etc. Synthesia is now only used to play smaller pieces, and/or is used as a "challenge" to have the least lag when playing bigger pieces. The program's latest released revision is 10.x. Since the latest release is now a shareware, you need to pay in order to play MIDIs that are not pre-installed and to get the "Learning Pack," which allows for better learning with note labels, etc.

Latest stable version:
10.2.3723 for Windows
10.2.3723 for Mac OS X

Latest beta version:
preview-10.2.3659 for Windows
preview-10.2.3659 for Mac OS X

Version history: Can be found here

Max notes: ~2-4 Million for Synthesia 0.8.x and 9.x, ~8 Million for Synthesia 10.x

Max notes (with 4GB Patch): ~6-7 Million, ~10 Million for Synthesia 10.x

A metadata editor is also available, to add more informations to MIDI when playing them: Download

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Synthesia is graphically superior to other programs
  • When you load a MIDI, you have better control over tracks, and what they consist of (instruments, etc.)
  • Notes can easily be hidden by using the F5 key. This can be used to alleviate lag under most circumstances.

Cons

  • Poorly optimized; Synthesia lags the most out of all MIDI Players, so as a result, Synthesia is rarely used for larger MIDIs.
  • Music pieces use way more RAM on Synthesia (excluding 10) than other alternatives (such as Piano From Above), and as a result, some pieces might not open due to the massive RAM usage.
  • Newer versions (8.4, 8.5, 8.6 and 9, excluding 10) lag more than older versions. The least laggy versions are 0.8.0/0.8.1/0.8.2/0.8.3/10.x
  • Only displays a maximum of 88 keys, as compared to Piano From Above's 128 Keys

Trivia

  • Nicholas planned to add a video editor, called "Synthesia Video Creator", that allows people to record MIDIs without getting lag spikes/stuttering. It's currently under development.

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