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#1154111 - 02/27/09 05:51 PM Nord Stage 88 EX vs Roland RD-700 GX
JRD Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/23/09
Posts: 8
Narrowing my search - really would appreciate thoughts on the pros and cons between the Nord Stage 88 EX and the Roland RD-700 GS.

It will be almost exclusively for gigs. I am replacing an Alesis QS8.1.

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#1154146 - 02/27/09 06:37 PM Re: Nord Stage 88 EX vs Roland RD-700 GX [Re: JRD]
kiedysktos. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 425
Loc: Europe, Poland
The diference is big; both are great. As always, the most important factor is what you play.

Some people use Nord Electro as an organ, since it's superb, probably the best. (organ section in Nord Stage is the same).
Others use it mainly for e.pianos, which also sound superb; also probably the best smile And built-in synthesizer give you a lot of possibilities; it's simple but powerful.
Although I've never met anyone who bought it only for piano playing. Piano sounds are very good, and in the band it's enough, but if you want to play many solo piano, many will tell you it's not enough.

And Roland is made for that purpose, it's piano sounds better. Also, the keyboard seems to be better (but the difference isn't as huge). It has 260 voices, including acoustic bass, brass, strings, orchestral sounds - it's not 1000, but it is. (Nord doesn't even try to add sampled orchestra instruments, it's not their departement) Maybe after Alesis you'll notice lack of sounds? E.pianos and organ are good, but Nord has the best smile 700GX has 200 rhytms, good for practicing. It has LCD, which can be useful. And you can tweak piano sound in terms of hammer noise etc.

So, at first sight you see the difference. Roland 700GX is typical stage piano, Nord has Organ, and Synth section, also great e.pianos; if you use them a lot, it's worth buying. If you play piano (specially solo) and want to add sometimes some good organ, e.p., or realistic strings/bass/synth sound, 700GX is for you.

If I had enough money and space in the car, I'd buy 700GX for playing pianos, and Nord Electro for e.pianos, organ, synths smile
Roland FP-4

#1154175 - 02/27/09 07:20 PM Re: Nord Stage 88 EX vs Roland RD-700 GX [Re: kiedysktos.]
Glimmer Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/16/08
Posts: 31
Loc: Duendin, New Zealand
I was thinking about these very two options the other day, but I need to clarify something first. On my visit to the Clavia home page I got the following impression.

The Nord Stage EX is a weighted digital piano with some electric piano/organ sounds.

The Nord Electro 3 is a semi-weighted 76 keyboard that specialises in vintage electric keyboard/organ sounds

Surely its the Stage EX you want to be comparing to the Roland RD700GX as they are both weighted digital pianos. The Nord Electro 3 is a tempting instrument if you were doing a lot more performing in electric keyboard styles.

These are just my first impressions. I welcome any further information on these two models as I'm also looking at upgrading soon.

#1154205 - 02/27/09 08:12 PM Re: Nord Stage 88 EX vs Roland RD-700 GX [Re: Glimmer]
kiedysktos. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 425
Loc: Europe, Poland
Few months ago Nord Stage and Nord Electro 2 were identical in organ, e.pianos and pianos. Nord Electro was without whole synth section and with simplier effect section; though both sound identical. Now we have Stage EX, and the only difference is bigger memory and outlook. Electro 3 is improved, but it's still very similar to Stage EX.
The problem is when you don't wat to pay for synth section, and want to have full size keys (Electro 3 hasn't).
Roland FP-4

#1154234 - 02/27/09 09:23 PM Re: Nord Stage 88 EX vs Roland RD-700 GX [Re: kiedysktos.]
JRD Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/23/09
Posts: 8
I should have elaborated. I have never used any of the drum effects, and doubt I ever will. We occasionally use some strings and horns, but I understand that the Nord allows you to simulate them with the Synth. An obvious Synth horn is likely preferable in my mind to a real horn sound coming off a keyboard for what we do. Same with strings really.

We rarely do piano only. Always have at least a bass and acoustic going on.

#1154417 - 02/28/09 05:44 AM Re: Nord Stage 88 EX vs Roland RD-700 GX [Re: JRD]
Aidan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/23/08
Posts: 372
Loc: UK
As an RD700GX owner, I would say the Stage might be the better instrument for what you need. The Yamaha piano samples on it probably cut better in a band situation and the electric pianos, clavinets and organs are way beyond what the RD offers.

The Stage is also way lighter than the RD and you can get it in a 76-key version which is even lighter, if you can live with the shorter span.

The Electro comes in 73 or 61 keys and is semi-weighted, doesn't have the synth section and is monotimbral (only one sound at a time). However, it can load samples and comes with a few Mellotron and real strings and brass. It's also even lighter and more compact than the stage but you need to decide whether you can live with the action.

The Stage is also available in the "Compact" version which is essentially the same action and span (73) as the Electro.

I, however, mostly play solo or jazz trio piano gigs, for which the RD is far nicer, despite the weight!

Your call.
Yamaha CP40 | Hammond SK1-61 | Kurzweil PC361

#1154495 - 02/28/09 09:59 AM Re: Nord Stage 88 EX vs Roland RD-700 GX [Re: Aidan]
Karnevil Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/17/06
Posts: 160
I don't own either, but I've got plenty of experience with the Nord Stage. IMO, I've never been that impressed with Clavia - except for the C1 organ, which sounds absoluteley amazing (faaaar better than Stage and Electro). You can even dial in some pretty much awesome Emerson sounds on the C1 (excellent overdrive sim), which is impossible on every single other hammond clone out there AFAIK. The organ/overdrive section on the new Stage is NOT the same as the C1, AFAIK. Some simulation components are there, but not all of them.

What clavia has going for them, is great applicability in a live pop/rock context, and brilliant design. The sounds just "work" in a band context, even if they sound underwhelming on their own (piano sounds). The clavia pianos have some flaws, and lack some of the finer details that other brands offer (decent sympathetic resonnace algorithm, and half-pedalling). However, in a pop/rock context those things aren't really that important. For a more revealing jazz-context, I would not use a Clavia piano.
The synth section on the Stage is very anemic, but then again I've never been a fan of the VA sound that Clavia offers (they sound very little like real analog IMO). The rhodes and clavinets are very good, but people tends to use too much of the onboard Stage/electro-distortion/overdrive with the rhodes sound, which then sounds a bit fake.
All in all, the Stage is an excellent piano in some contexts, but rather average for others. It's up to personal preferances and uses. One another cool thing about the stage is the response/connection from the keyboard, which is very good/quick.

Edited by Karnevil (02/28/09 11:06 AM)


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