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#1337358 - 12/30/09 07:35 PM Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP please :)
Honkytonkman Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/25/09
Posts: 13
Loc: UK
Hi,

I recently bought a Yamaha P85. Reasons: extremely portable (carry it in a padded bag over my shoulder, great key action, nice samples. I usually play acoustic pianos at home/for work events/at pubs (old beaten up honkytonk pianos!) but a group of folks want me to join them at local events where I'd need my own piano. So portability and decent key action were crucial. Now the regrets - which I'm hoping some kind folks who use the P85 pianos for gigs can help me come to terms with smile
a) Are the internal speakers really too puny to accompany a folk-type band (acoustic guitars, mandolins - albeit amped-up)
b) If using the headphone sockets as line-out the internal speakers will be dead. I'd hoped the internal speakers would stay on as some sort of 'close-up monitor' of what I'm playing. So I guess I have to buy a separate small speaker as monitor. That depresses me.
c) My old Yamaha PF85 had line-out and an on/off switch for the internal speakers - but, even then on that piano, would the internal speakers have shutdown too when using line-out? (Am trying to make myself feel I've not taken a backwards step with new P85).
d) I've just a bought a Stagg X-stand which because of the tapered underneath of the piano still isn't that secure. But it was the best 'fit' I could get.
e) If I'm doomed with the above scenarios, I could part-ex for another digital piano. But.. IS there something that compares to the Yamaha P85 in weight, line-out (with internal speakers still functioning), and realistic key action?

Hope some of regular giggers using the P-85 can help me through my post-purchase gloom, as I thought I'd researched this model as thoroughly as poss. I want to avoid the Casio at all costs as they make great cash-registers and calculators but should stick to that (I don't want a spring-aided action).

Many thanks for any comments/advice.

Cheers.

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#1337377 - 12/30/09 08:07 PM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP please :) [Re: Honkytonkman]
snazzyplayer Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/26/09
Posts: 983
Loc: Earth
First thing you have to realize the PF-85 was pretty well the top of the line stage piano and much more money when new (1987)...the P-85 is an entry level piano, and there were things left off to keep the price low.

If you're using an X-Stand, there are two adaptors that fit to the underside of the P-85 and make the piano stable. Your dealer should be able to get these for you...mine threw them in at time of purchase.

The speakers are my biggest complaint about the P-85, so I bought a stereo system that plugs into one of the headphone jacks, and, yes, the internal speakers stop working...they'd hardly be loud enough for stage monitoring anyway.

You should be playing through a stereo speaker system, or stereo keyboard amp, if you want to hear your piano properly...most, if not all digital pianos, use stereo samples, and only sound right when played through a stereo system.

You might look at a Korg SP-250, although at 40 lbs it is a bit heavier, but it does offer stereo line outs and more on-board sounds. The action is allegedly made by Fatar, so it may or may not suit you. You may still need an external stereo amp.

Snazzy
_________________________
Semper Gumby: Always flexible \:^)

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#1337467 - 12/30/09 10:07 PM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP pleas [Re: Honkytonkman]
ChrisA Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 3841
Loc: Redondo Beach, California
I couldn't believe the P85 lacked a Line Out jack. I had to look it up. You are correct, no line out. The most comparable piano would be the next up Yamaha p-series, the p155. But that is one darn expensive line-out jack.

Why not take the p85 to a repair shop and tell them you want a line out jack installed. It is a very easy job for anyone who knows about electronics.

The other option is a to install a switch that disables the switch built into the headphone jack. This requires even less skill to install

Try gluing neoprene to the stand it make a kind of anti-skid. Any kind of spongey rubber will do

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#1337484 - 12/30/09 10:40 PM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP pleas [Re: Honkytonkman]
Dr Popper Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/30/09
Posts: 1718
Loc: Hancock Park LA (not again)



a) Yes way too puny
b) if its a nice speaker it shouldn't be too depressing but you have other problems because of c)
c) The PF85 was a proper stage piano the P85 is home one ...the P85 has no proper line out at all only the headphone jack
d) Try using a bit of packing foam to steady it ... works for most ill fitting stands
e) Not for the price ...you would be looking at double the price for a proper stage piano with the features you describe. I use a Roland RD700GX and a Yamaha s90XS as my main digital stages and they are both $2000 plus KB's and very heavy compared to the P85. The Korg SP-250 isn't bad at all at around $650 but both the upper Yamaha's the P-155 and CP-33 are both around $900-1000. The Kawai MP5 and EP3's are both around $1000 (but very nice) and the Roland RD300GX (fantastic stage piano) is around $1500. None of these are going to be anywhere near as light as the P-85 BTW.



Many thanks for any comments/advice.

Cheers.

[/quote]
_________________________
"I'm still an idiot and I'm still in love" - Blue Sofa - The Plugz 1981 (Tito Larriva)
Disclosure : I am professionally supported by but not beholden to various musical instrument manufactures including Yamaha

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#1337486 - 12/30/09 10:42 PM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP pleas [Re: ChrisA]
dewster Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4340
Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: ChrisA
Why not take the p85 to a repair shop and tell them you want a line out jack installed. It is a very easy job for anyone who knows about electronics.

The other option is a to install a switch that disables the switch built into the headphone jack. This requires even less skill to install

Rewiring the headphone jack itself to be non-switching might be even easier.

I do feel your pain. Our P120 has a three position switch for this on the headphone jacks, but subsequent models seem to have eliminated it. More money for the corporate jet I suppose.
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THE RD-700NX Thread!
DPs Exposed! (nekid pichures!)

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#1338163 - 12/31/09 08:33 PM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP please :) [Re: snazzyplayer]
Honkytonkman Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/25/09
Posts: 13
Loc: UK
Hi snazzy,

Do you happen to have any part numbers for the 2 adaptors that fit underneath the P85? My dealer is a bit vague on things, so I might need to track them down myself? Many thanks.

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#1338225 - 12/31/09 11:33 PM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP please :) [Re: Honkytonkman]
snazzyplayer Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/26/09
Posts: 983
Loc: Earth
Hey, Honktonk...I don't have the part numbers.

I'll check with the dealer, who is away until January the 4th or so.

They are made out of a round metal stock about 1/4" diameter, in a roughly square shape, and they clip into the underside of the piano...strange they wouldn't have them, but I think I remember Zeke saying they might end up being a bit tough to get, so I took the ones he had. My other P-85 has the factory stand and pedals.

I couldn't find anything about the adaptors in the manual either, and I'm thinking they might not be available...something tells me they might have made only so many.

Snazzy

PS... I read somewhere that it was no problem getting it to fit properly on a "Z-style" keyboard stand.




Edited by snazzyplayer (12/31/09 11:44 PM)
_________________________
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#1338265 - 01/01/10 02:04 AM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP please :) [Re: Honkytonkman]
DragonPianoPlayer Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/12/06
Posts: 2368
Loc: Denver, CO
Originally Posted By: Honkytonkman
Hi,
I want to avoid the Casio at all costs as they make great cash-registers and calculators but should stick to that (I don't want a spring-aided action).

I think you were looking at the wrong Casio models. The Privia series uses a hammer weighted mechanism - no springs involved.
_________________________

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#1338282 - 01/01/10 03:23 AM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP please :) [Re: DragonPianoPlayer]
emenelton Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 468
It's not typically a good idea to have your internal speakers on while also monitoring your sound from another monitor and I would not physically modify my headphone jack just to keep the internal speakers on while using the headphone jack as my line out. A pair of the Roland Cube monitors connected to your headphone output in stereo would be one solution.


Edited by emenelton (01/01/10 03:24 AM)

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#1339657 - 01/03/10 07:08 AM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP please :) [Re: emenelton]
Honkytonkman Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/25/09
Posts: 13
Loc: UK
Well folks. Thanks for all your posts. I've been mulling it all over. I found a dealer with a Roland FP4 to try and yes, it did seem to tick most boxes, although the action was too light for me. So the portability of the P85 and the key action convinced me to stick with my P85.

So, I'll need to get a combo amp/monitor for when I'm playing with my friends. So next question is.. what amp/speaker? Crucially I want portability, and I'll need to be able to run a mic through it. Any advice?

Stuff we do is acoustic based - mandolins, acoustic guitars, harmonica, singers doing anything from early Billy Joel, to Mamas and Papas, bit of Ray Charles, country stuff, Paul Simon, etc so I don't need 5 zillion watts of power. Just something for small clubs. I'm a complete novice at this so in effect I don't know what I don't know. Any makes or brands to avoid?

Many thanks again for all your help so far.

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#1339666 - 01/03/10 07:46 AM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP pleas [Re: emenelton]
Melodialworks Music Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/19/05
Posts: 1309
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: emenelton
It's not typically a good idea to have your internal speakers on while also monitoring your sound from another monitor


Why do you say that? I often use this setup with the FP-7. The main speakers are placed so that the choir I'm accompanying can hear properly, and the there is a correct balance for the audience - but I need to have more juice at the keyboard, so the obvious solution is to use the internal speakers.

Am I missing something here?
_________________________
Melodialworks Music
Yamaha C3X
Yamaha CP300 + Omnisphere
Yamaha NU1 + Production Grand

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#1339695 - 01/03/10 09:00 AM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP pleas [Re: Melodialworks Music]
dewster Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4340
Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: Melodialworks Music
Originally Posted By: emenelton
It's not typically a good idea to have your internal speakers on while also monitoring your sound from another monitor


Why do you say that? I often use this setup with the FP-7. The main speakers are placed so that the choir I'm accompanying can hear properly, and the there is a correct balance for the audience - but I need to have more juice at the keyboard, so the obvious solution is to use the internal speakers.

Am I missing something here?

I agree, I don't get how it is a bad idea.

Of course, the speakers / amps in the P85 are so wussy that they are likely fairly useless as nearfield monitors in a live situation. But they might be better than nothing.
_________________________
The DPBSD Project!
THE RD-700NX Thread!
DPs Exposed! (nekid pichures!)

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#1339709 - 01/03/10 09:38 AM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP pleas [Re: dewster]
Martin C. Doege Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/19/09
Posts: 448
Loc: Hamburg, Germany
Originally Posted By: dewster

Of course, the speakers / amps in the P85 are so wussy that they are likely fairly useless as nearfield monitors in a live situation. But they might be better than nothing.


The sound simply isn't directed very much at the player on the P-85, that's not a question of weak speakers, more of speaker placement. If you want something that takes straight aim at you and blares music in your ears get the PX-320. smile
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Yamaha P-85; Pianoteq Pleyel

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#1339775 - 01/03/10 11:40 AM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP pleas [Re: Martin C. Doege]
emenelton Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 468
I have found with my DP, that when I have my internal speakers on and my stage monitor on, the comb filtering that happens creates a beating effect. When I saw the response to Honkey man trending towards modifying his hardware, when my impression from what he posted was that his band-mates had actual stage amps, I felt the responsibility to offer my suggestion.
Comb filtering occurs when you monitor the same audio program material from 2 different speakers - example: DP's internal speakers and your DP's stage monitor - that are different distances from your ear. Comb filter also describes what happens to a stereo piano signal when both the left and right channel are monitored through a single mono speaker and it sounds bad.

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#1339793 - 01/03/10 11:59 AM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP pleas [Re: emenelton]
dewster Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4340
Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: emenelton
I have found with my DP, that when I have my internal speakers on and my stage monitor on, the comb filtering that happens creates a beating effect. When I saw the response to Honkey man trending towards modifying his hardware, when my impression from what he posted was that his band-mates had actual stage amps, I felt the responsibility to offer my suggestion.
Comb filtering occurs when you monitor the same audio program material from 2 different speakers - example: DP's internal speakers and your DP's stage monitor - that are different distances from your ear.

Then you've given up on having a monitor near you on stage? Or are you saying the monitor should significantly overpower the PA (at the player position)?

Originally Posted By: emenelton
Comb filter also describes what happens to a stereo piano signal when both the left and right channel are monitored through a single mono speaker and it sounds bad.

Though phase is ultimately what causes comb filtering (via delay), I would label that more of a straight phase issue.
_________________________
The DPBSD Project!
THE RD-700NX Thread!
DPs Exposed! (nekid pichures!)

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#1339989 - 01/03/10 04:17 PM Re: Yamaha P85 - might be regretting my purchase. HELP pleas [Re: dewster]
emenelton Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 468
Dewster Quote
Then you've given up on having a monitor near you on stage? Or are you saying the monitor should significantly overpower the PA (at the player position)?

"I have found with my DP, that when I have my internal speakers on and my stage monitor on, the comb filtering that happens creates a beating effect."

I did not mention FOH. The FOH speakers are typically far enough away from your piano monitors that they don't create a problem.

from wikipedia -
"In signal processing, a comb filter adds a delayed version of a signal to itself, causing constructive and destructive interference. The frequency response of a comb filter consists of a series of regularly-spaced spikes, giving the appearance of a comb."

In combining a left and right output of a DP into a single mono monitor, it's the original spacing of the microphones during the piano sample recording process, that each contain a delayed version of each others signal.

Honkytonkman:
The Motion Sound KP500SN is a nice stereo combo amp for keyboards that only weighs 37lbs, has 2 - 12" speaker, 4 - horn tweeters and has 500 watts of power, but unfortunately costs a-lot and is probably overkill for your situation. How-ever you should consider the quality and power of the stage amps your bandmates are using when you make your decision. I've read here that 2 - Roland cube amps are quite usable also. The 30 watt a piece ones have a good reputation.


Edited by emenelton (01/03/10 04:21 PM)

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