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#1384842 - 02/28/10 02:13 PM Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action
Paul L Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/05/09
Posts: 2
Hi all

I'm a long time reader, but this is my first posting. My kids (ages 8&12) have outgrown their 64 key yamaha keyboard and need the full 88 keys in order to play many of the pieces now being covered in their lessons.

I'm going to stick with yamaha (their music teacher has them using a ydp-223) so I was going to buy a ydp-160 until I saw the new yamahas coming out soon. I know they would enjoy the 'fun' features of the new YDP-V240 but saw a recommendation on a separate thread advising against the GHS keys.

My main question is: Is the yamaha GHE (now called GH) key action clearly superior to GHS?

If yes, then I'd likely go for the YDP-160 or wait for the new 161/181 (depending on pricing), and let them keep the existing 66 key keyboard for the 'fun' stuff - it has lots of instruments and effects.

If the difference is small, then I'll consider the YDP-240

Thanks in advance
Paul

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#1384867 - 02/28/10 02:35 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: Paul L]
ChrisA Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 3841
Loc: Redondo Beach, California
There is a pretty big difference, not subtle at all between the GH and GHS keys. Some people actually prefer the much lighter GHS action but if you are looking for a match to the YDP223 then the YDP160 (or P155) would be an exact match.

Take a trip to the local Guitar Center and/or Sam Ash store and try out a GH and GHS keyboard.

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#1384874 - 02/28/10 02:44 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: Paul L]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3815
Loc: North Carolina
Originally Posted By: Paul L
My main question is: Is the yamaha GHE (now called GH) key action clearly superior to GHS?
I've found the GH/GHE and GH3 keyboards to be much superior to the GHS. But I think you should try both keyboards and decide for yourself.

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#1384937 - 02/28/10 04:37 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: MacMacMac]
SnowTown Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/17/08
Posts: 37
imo the difference between gh/ghe and ghs is pretty significant with gh/ghe being the much better/realistic action.

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#1384972 - 02/28/10 05:40 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: SnowTown]
Paul L Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/05/09
Posts: 2
thanks all
I'll seek them out in a store - the only place near me didn't have anything with the GHS action, but the advice seems unanimous especially given they already have learned on the ydp-223
Best Regards
Paul

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#1385009 - 02/28/10 06:48 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: Paul L]
RDW Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 101
A few people here rather like the GHS, but for me the feel of the GH/GHE is a big step up. According to one tech who has posted here, even the GH3 that the more expensive Clavinovas use (with the addition of extra key sensors) is mechanically the same as the GH, which probably tells you something.

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#1385016 - 02/28/10 06:53 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: RDW]
ChrisA Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 3841
Loc: Redondo Beach, California
Originally Posted By: RDW
A few people here rather like the GHS, but for me the feel of the GH/GHE is a big step up. According to one tech who has posted here, even the GH3 that the more expensive Clavinovas use (with the addition of extra key sensors) is mechanically the same as the GH, which probably tells you something.


I suspect the GH and GH3 really are the same but Yamaha won't come right out and say this because it might cannibalize GH3 sales.

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#1385024 - 02/28/10 07:03 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: ChrisA]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Originally Posted By: ChrisA


I suspect the GH and GH3 really are the same but Yamaha won't come right out and say this because it might cannibalize GH3 sales.


According to this Yamaha web page, GH3 addes the third sensor for improved repetition:
http://music.yamaha.com/products/highlights/keyboardsAST/8.html

Greg.

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#1385049 - 02/28/10 07:32 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
ChrisA Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 3841
Loc: Redondo Beach, California
Originally Posted By: sullivang
Originally Posted By: ChrisA


I suspect the GH and GH3 really are the same but Yamaha won't come right out and say this because it might cannibalize GH3 sales.


According to this Yamaha web page, GH3 addes the third sensor for improved repetition:
http://music.yamaha.com/products/highlights/keyboardsAST/8.html

Greg.


I know what they said. It is worded very carefully so as not to directly compare GH3 to any tother key action.

A question for GH3 keyboard owners: How far must you raise the key before it can be played again?

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#1385117 - 02/28/10 09:07 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: ChrisA]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Originally Posted By: ChrisA


I know what they said. It is worded very carefully so as not to directly compare GH3 to any tother key action.


But they do compare it directly with another action - they compare it to the GH action - quoting:

"This update of the GH action adds sensors to the existing system, recreating such acoustic responses as damper position and faster repetition speeds." smile

Greg.

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#1385149 - 02/28/10 09:51 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Btw, it seems that even the new CP50 only has the "GH" action - not GH3. Assuming that the new "NW-Stage" action has three sensors (or the equivalent or better response), the only two "slab" keyboards that have a response like the GH3 are the CP1 and CP5. (can anyone veryify that the NW-Stage action has three sensors, or something just as good? Note that I do realise that the NW-Stage is not graded, and is not focussed as narrowly on the acoustic piano action as GH/GH3 is)

Without very strong evidence to the contrary, I'm going to trust the Yamaha literature for the time being, regarding the differences between GH and GH3.

Greg.


Edited by sullivang (02/28/10 09:57 PM)

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#1385290 - 03/01/10 04:16 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
RDW Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 101
Here's the thread that discusses the details:

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthrea...erally%20h.html

"The mechanics and weighting of the GH and GH3 are identical. They share the same part numbers for the weighting elements (what Yamaha calls the Hammer Assembly) and spring. The key is only different in that the contact point is shaped differently to accommodate three contact points in stead of two.

The third sensor on the GH3 action is functionally equivalent to the repetition lever on an acoustic grand action, allowing faster repetition without fully releasing the key or allowing the damper to touch the strings."

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#1385381 - 03/01/10 08:51 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: RDW]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3815
Loc: North Carolina
Thanks for that RDW.

That information has been around for a long time. But some people seem to prefer guesswork. It's reassuring to know that we can rely on information to dispel the rumors.

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#1387737 - 03/04/10 12:20 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: MacMacMac]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
I tried GH3 and GHS today (didn't try GH). It's very difficult in a shop to have the patience to test properly, but the GH3 did not behave as I expected it to - I expected to be able to slightly lift off the key, and then press it again, causing a new note, but WITHOUT ever cutting off the previous note. It did not do this, and I always seemed to have to lift the key all the way up (to about 75% travel) in order for a new note - at least when playing slowly. When playing faster, there is some possibility that it is behaving like this, but I cannot be sure. I could not notice much difference in repetition performance between GH3 and GHS - this may well be due to my lack of skill.

VERY INTERESTING THOUGH: The Casio PX-130 seems to have CONTINUOUS damper control! I.e - as I slowly released a key, the sound would gradually deaden, and the rate of decay would increase as the key is released. I.e, for any given key depth, the rate of decay would be a certain value. This is pretty impressive I think.

Greg.

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#1387749 - 03/04/10 12:40 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
ChrisA Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 3841
Loc: Redondo Beach, California
On my GH keyboard, a P155. I have to raise the key back to 50% at which point the note stops and I can re-play the same note. I'm convinced the GH and GH3 keys are the same. Maybe technically a different sensor but funtionally the same

I tried this on an older Kawai CN21 the other night and it worked the same except the key had to come almost all the way back up before the note stopped. The Yamaha damps the note when the key is 1/2 way back up

So far all pianos allow notes to repeat faster than my skill level.



Edited by ChrisA (03/04/10 12:42 AM)

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#1387806 - 03/04/10 03:48 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: ChrisA]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Chris,
I'll go back see if the CLP-340 (with GH3) is also 50% - I might be mistaken.

Greg.

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#1387897 - 03/04/10 08:43 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
Dhaos Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/02/10
Posts: 5
The clp 340 has ivory buttons too. I think it makes a big difference from plastic buttons.

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#1387915 - 03/04/10 09:10 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: ChrisA]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3815
Loc: North Carolina
Originally Posted By: ChrisA
On my GH keyboard, a P155. I have to raise the key back to 50% at which point the note stops and I can re-play the same note. I'm convinced the GH and GH3 keys are the same. Maybe technically a different sensor but funtionally the same.
The GH and GH3 are very different. On GH3, you can press a key, then lift it perhaps 15% ... and you can then press again and replay that note. The repetition rate is fantastic.

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#1388122 - 03/04/10 02:36 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: MacMacMac]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
MacMacMac: I could not reproduce that behaviour on a CLP-340, which does have the GH3 action, at least, not when moving the key very slowly. When moving the key more rapidly, it is difficult to restrict the movement such that it doesn't go up high enough to the "standard" trigger point. (and the obvious thing to do then is to play so rapidly that the key simply doesn't have time to return all the way up to that point, but that's difficult to measure)

When you do this test, are you able to do it as slowly as you like, or do you have to do the repetition at a normal playing speed?

Greg.

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#1388123 - 03/04/10 02:37 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: MacMacMac]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
MacMacMac: I could not reproduce that behaviour on a CLP-340, which does have the GH3 action, at least, not when moving the key very slowly. When moving the key more rapidly, it is difficult to restrict the movement such that it doesn't go up high enough to the "standard" trigger point. (and the obvious thing to do then is to play so rapidly that the key simply doesn't have time to return all the way up to that point, but that's difficult to measure)

When you do this test, are you able to do it as slowly as you like, or do you have to do the repetition at a normal playing speed?

Greg.

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#1388144 - 03/04/10 03:08 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
ChrisA Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 3841
Loc: Redondo Beach, California
One way to do the test is to hold a block of wood or upsidedown pencil against the side of an adjacent key. This will restrict how far the pressed key can raise.

Let the key come back up to the stop and press it again if it makes no sound raise the stop. Not much skill is required.


On my GH keyboard the key needs to come back up 50%. So far we have reports from two GH3 owners of 15% and 80%. Either not all GH3 are alike or not everyone has perfect measuring technique.

I suspect that all GH and GH3 keyboards are not the same. If you look at the Yamaha repair parts web site you see the part numbers of the varios GH keys are not the same. I think the terms GH and GHS refer to classes of key actions. I'd not be surprized if some newer GH perform better than some older GH3.

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#1388354 - 03/04/10 08:25 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: ChrisA]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
I've measured the normal note-off key travel of the CLP-340(GH3 action) again, and it is indeed 50%, which matches Chris' P-155.
(10mm key travel, 5mm return for note termination)

I also tried restricting the key travel in the way Chris suggested. For slow playing, I was still unable to produce a new note for key returns under 5mm. Unfortunately, I still can't be sure whether it's working when playing normally - I think there is a definite possiblity that it is, however I think the force of the returning key caused my other hand (which was holding the key down) to move around a bit. I didn't want to push against the neighbouring key TOO hard on the display unit.

I did a bit more repetition testing, using the two-handed method. I still don't think the GH3 is all that fantastic. I thought the PHAIII (on the Roland HP307) was better, and I thought that Kawai CN22 was the best out of these three. It would be great if Keyboad Mag et al could do a thorough, quantitative review of the reptition capabilities of digital pianos!

Greg.


Edited by sullivang (03/04/10 08:26 PM)

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#1388407 - 03/04/10 09:36 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
MacMacMac Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 3815
Loc: North Carolina
I tried it again. I was quoting 15% ... but expressed as total key height. I guess a more meaningful spec would be a percentage of key dip. I eyeball this at about 30-40%. (BTW ... this is a CLP240.)

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#1388664 - 03/05/10 06:35 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: MacMacMac]
hpeterh Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/10
Posts: 824
Loc: Germany
Originally Posted By: MacMacMac
The GH and GH3 are very different. On GH3, you can press a key, then lift it perhaps 15% ... and you can then press again and replay that note. The repetition rate is fantastic.


I ask myself what the MIDI output is in this case.
A normal keyboard outputs noteon,noteoff,noteon,noteoff...
Does the GH3 output noteon, noteon,noton,noteon,noteoff... ?

Will piano libraries like Synthogy Ivory,GalaxyII or Pianoteq interpret this accordingly?

Peter
_________________________
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acer aspire m3300 AMD Phenom II X6


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#1388686 - 03/05/10 07:11 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: hpeterh]
mucci Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/29/10
Posts: 1070
Loc: Munich, Germany
Very interesting point! I would assume they can't interpret this correctly, since there is no MIDI control information "15% note off", it's on or off. Anyone know more about this or can check this somehow with real MIDI output?
_________________________
<~ don't test forever - play and enjoy! ~>

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#1388707 - 03/05/10 08:24 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: mucci]
hpeterh Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/10
Posts: 824
Loc: Germany
Now, I abbreviated this a little bit.

Normally a piano keyboard sends

NoteOn xx, NoteOn 00, NoteOn yy, Note On 00

"Note On 00" is interpeted as Note Off and MIDIOX displays it this way.

There is also an event "Noteoff xx" where xx is the keyreelaese velocity, but piano keyboards never send it.
The only brand that really sends it is Roland and they send a fixed dummy value.

If a key has only two sensors then no other sequence than "on,off,on,off..." is possible, because a new keystroke velocity cannot been measured before the Off-switch has triggered.

/Theoretically/ a 3-Sensor Key could do this in another way.
The question is, will it really do this?

Also note that "sensor" is marketing speech. The keys dont have "sensors" they have contacts made from conductive plastics. There are only two possible states for such a "sensor" : On and Off

Peter






Edited by hpeterh (03/05/10 08:25 AM)
_________________________
1929 Galaxy Blüthner Baby Grand
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#1388717 - 03/05/10 08:45 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: hpeterh]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
I have sent ONLY note-ons to a) Pianoteq, and b) a Yamaha Disklavier (model DP4 - this is a real piano with the Disklavier control) Both produce a normal sounding repetition.

This was for a repetition test. The reason I did not include note-offs is that a real grand piano, when repeating rapidly, does not let the damper touch the strings. (that's my understanding, anyway).

The Disklavier (DP4) recording is available here:
http://www.box.net/shared/jjd08pvfcl

This is the reason I EXPECTED a "triple sensor" action to be able to produce ONLY note-ons, when the key is partially released and then pressed again. It may only work when playing at normal speeds though - i.e - it may be invalid to test it by very slowly moving the key. (just surmisal)

A "sensor" does not have to be just on or off - it can sense a continuous range. In fact, the Casio PX-X30 range appears to sense the key position in a continuous manner, as it is released, simulating the damper gradually deadening the strings. (as I said in an earlier reply). Thus, it appears to me that the "third sensor" in the new Casio range is in fact continuous. Or, perhaps this continous sensing has been standard for Casio for a while (I have no idea), and Casio do not even count this as one of the "three sensors" involved in key-press velocity and repetition etc.

Greg.


Edited by sullivang (03/05/10 08:48 AM)

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#1388723 - 03/05/10 08:58 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
hpeterh Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/10
Posts: 824
Loc: Germany
Originally Posted By: sullivang

A "sensor" does not have to be just on or off - it can sense a continuous range. In fact, the Casio PX-X30 range appears to sense the key position in a continuous manner, as it is released, simulating the damper gradually deadening the strings. (as I said in an earlier reply). Thus, it appears to me that the "third sensor" in the new Casio range is in fact continuous. Or, perhaps this continous sensing has been standard for Casio for a while (I have no idea), and Casio do not even count this as one of the "three sensors" involved in key-press velocity and repetition etc.

Greg.



Hi Greg!

Thanks for your valueable infos.
However, I believe you are in error here. This would be an /incredible/ expensive technic and would require a lot of RAM and a fast processor.
That is impossible for a low cost piano

Normally the contacts are scanned by the processor and the time distance is measured and from this the velocity is calculated.

I have repaired several keyboards and I really know how this stuff works, but unfortunately for ordinary "2 sensor" keyboards only.

Peter
_________________________
1929 Galaxy Blüthner Baby Grand
acer aspire m3300 AMD Phenom II X6


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#1388735 - 03/05/10 09:11 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: hpeterh]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Peter,
I've actually tested this myself - I slowly released a single key, and could clearly hear the effect I described. For any given key depth, the decay rate of the note varied. When the key is almost at the top, the sound dies away very quickly. When it is near the bottom, the sound dies away slowly. Maybe it is not as continous as I think, however at the very least there are multiple steps.
(it seemed quite smooth to me though)

If I get the chance I'll go back and video it. If you get to test this yourself, please report back.

Greg.

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#1388750 - 03/05/10 09:25 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
hpeterh Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/10
Posts: 824
Loc: Germany
I have to drive 100km to test it....
However, I will watch this with interest.

Maybe they mesure the release velocity und adjust the fadeout time accordingly.

But, according to the PX330 MIDI specs, the release velocity is not sent via MIDI.

best,

Peter
_________________________
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#1388755 - 03/05/10 09:30 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: hpeterh]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
That's a very good point. Assuming I am right that it is sensing the key release continuously (or quasi-continously, more likely), then wouldn't it be great if this information was available as MIDI! (assuming we had something to interpret it)

I do not think it is simply measuring the release velocity, because, as I said, I could hold the key at intermediate positions, and the decay rate was different for each position.

Maybe I was listening through extremely rose-coloured headphones. I'll go back and have another go.

Greg.

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#1388768 - 03/05/10 09:44 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Just thinking about sending ONLY note-ons, I have a suspicion that it's probably still best to send the note-offs, for timing reasons. In the Disklavier case, the poor piano is being asked to INTANTANEOUSLY release the key and do another strike, which is a bit absurd. (in fact, at the end of the recording, it seems that the Disklavier simply stretched the timing out so that it could play each note)

I wonder whether the Disklavier SENDS only note-ons when it is doing rapid repeats, without the damper?

Greg.

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#1388831 - 03/05/10 11:01 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
dewster Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4343
Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: sullivang
That's a very good point. Assuming I am right that it is sensing the key release continuously (or quasi-continously, more likely), then wouldn't it be great if this information was available as MIDI! (assuming we had something to interpret it)

I don't think MIDI has enough bandwidth to handle 88 continuous controllers without objectionable delay. You can't do much with a 31.25kHz Baud rate (at best <2k messages per second).

Originally Posted By: sullivang
I do not think it is simply measuring the release velocity, because, as I said, I could hold the key at intermediate positions, and the decay rate was different for each position.

Very interesting. Scanning 88 controllers isn't that big of a deal, but I would imagine using that conductive plastic as a variable controller rather than a switch would lower the reliability of the action. You would need a different and higher bandwidth communication channel between the keys and the sound generator too, something that would introduce a fair amount of complexity for such a subtle effect in a low-end DP. With MIDI in already there in the sound section, and MIDI out already there in the keyboard section, simply connecting them together is the natural and easy thing to do.

On second thought, if they were smart about how they sent MIDI from the keyboard, e.g. prioritize the types of messages sent such as note on if available, and continuous messages otherwise, and drop any continuous messages if they are queued up for too long, perhaps MIDI could work internally. And they could use some kind of single byte shorthand MIDI to gain more bandwidth.
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#1388838 - 03/05/10 11:15 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: dewster]
hpeterh Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/10
Posts: 824
Loc: Germany
Originally Posted By: dewster
Scanning 88 controllers isn't that big of a deal, but I would imagine using that conductive plastic as a variable controller rather than a switch would lower the reliability of the action.


It is normally done this way:
All contacts are arranged in a matrix together with diodes.
If you have e.g. 64 contacts to scan, the matrix would be 8 x 8 and you need 16 digital IO Ports to scan 64 contacts.

A relatively small processor can do this.

But you cannot arrange 64 continuous resistors in a matrix.
Just consider how expensive a keyboard with polyphonic aftertouch is....

This cannot be done inexpensively, thats what I believe.

Also the CASIO's are targeted for a market that doesnt demand such a feature.

For example nonpolyphonic channel aftertouch for high-end clavinovas is demanded frequently by users. Yamaha doesnt think about implementing this feature ;-) And this would be relatively cheap to implement.

Peter



Edited by hpeterh (03/05/10 11:30 AM)
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#1388874 - 03/05/10 11:58 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
hpeterh Offline
500 Post Club Member

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Originally Posted By: sullivang

I wonder whether the Disklavier SENDS only note-ons when it is doing rapid repeats, without the damper?


For the high end Clavinovas Yamaha supports an extended MIDI Standard. This standard supports higher than 7 Bit resolution for velocity and might have other features that are unknown to me.

I dont know how they do it with the disklavier, but it is well possible that they use extended methods that are not subject of discussion here.

Peter
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#1388876 - 03/05/10 12:02 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: hpeterh]
sullivang Offline
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Regarding MIDI bandwidth, USB does not have the 31.25kbaud limitation. ;^)

I agree that it seems unlikely that continous release sensing would be implemented, especially on a low cost Casio. Working against my assertion is that it only has one intermediate step for the sustain pedal (half depression). If they had gone to all the trouble of implementing continuous release for the keys, they surely would have done this for the sustain pedal as well.
So, at best I expect to find one intermediate decay rate for a partially released key, when I re-test it.

Getting back to the Yamaha action, I'm just reading about the real grand repetition mechanism. Apparently a note can be repeated when the key has been released approximately 50%, which matches the GH/GH3 measurement we have obtained nicely, EXCEPT of course that on a real grand, the damper does not contact the strings at that 50% release point. On the GH/GH3, we're observing a termination of the note at the 50% point. I'm puzzled.

Greg.
p.s Peter - sorry if I seemed to be talking down to you about the definition of a "sensor". I thought you were trying to say that every sensor, no matter the context, has only two states - on and off. After re-reading your post, I see that you were simply saying that the key sensors on a typical digital piano are simple on/off contacts.


Edited by sullivang (03/05/10 12:10 PM)

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#1388894 - 03/05/10 12:22 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
hpeterh Offline
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Registered: 01/26/10
Posts: 824
Loc: Germany
My english is not very good.
I can read everything and understand even complicated stuff.
But I have difficulties to find the right terms to explain complicated stuff.
I use english for books and online only, have no other opportunities.

best,

Peter
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#1388898 - 03/05/10 12:30 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: hpeterh]
dewster Offline
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Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4343
Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: hpeterh
It is normally done this way:
All contacts are arranged in a matrix together with diodes.
If you have e.g. 64 contacts to scan, the matrix would be 8 x 8 and you need 16 digital IO Ports to scan 64 contacts.

A relatively small processor can do this.

Indeed, this was fairly trivial decades ago.

Originally Posted By: hpeterh
But you cannot arrange 64 continuous resistors in a matrix.
Just consider how expensive a keyboard with polyphonic aftertouch is....

You can similarly arrange the variable resistors in banks, and provide bias to those banks via one diode per bank. Then use a multi-channel A/D (with as many channels as there are resistors in a bank). The multi-channel A/Ds are usually a single A/D time multiplexed with an N-to-1 analog switch. For isolation at the A/D input, each resistor would need an output diode, and this diode drop would need to be accounted for in either pre or post A/D conversion.

Originally Posted By: hpeterh
Also the CASIO's are targeted for a market that doesnt demand such a feature.

I fully agree with that.

Originally Posted By: hpeterh
For example nonpolyphonic channel aftertouch for high-end clavinovas is demanded frequently by users. Yamaha doesnt think about implementing this feature ;-) And this would be relatively cheap to implement.

For the life of me, I don't understand how various critical decisions are made by keyboard manufacturers, particularly when it comes to leaving features off that people would really like. Perhaps it involve chicken entrails? They are watching every manufacturing penny like a hawk, which I guess is what for-profit entities should do, but still. There's something to be said for going out of your way to please customers.
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#1388901 - 03/05/10 12:32 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: hpeterh]
dewster Offline
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Registered: 12/07/09
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Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: hpeterh
My english is not very good.
I can read everything and understand even complicated stuff.
But I have difficulties to find the right terms to explain complicated stuff.

Dude, you're english is better than that of many Americans I know smile
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#1388907 - 03/05/10 12:40 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
dewster Offline
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Originally Posted By: sullivang
Regarding MIDI bandwidth, USB does not have the 31.25kbaud limitation. ;^)

True, but a single channel of MIDI over USB probably does, as USB enforces quality of service.

Originally Posted By: sullivang
I agree that it seems unlikely that continous release sensing would be implemented, especially on a low cost Casio. Working against my assertion is that it only has one intermediate step for the sustain pedal (half depression). If they had gone to all the trouble of implementing continuous release for the keys, they surely would have done this for the sustain pedal as well.
So, at best I expect to find one intermediate decay rate for a partially released key, when I re-test it.

Yes, I agree. I think if they are doing anything (not that I distrust you or your report in any way) they are perhaps somehow exploiting the second contact normally employed for quick repeat notes.

Originally Posted By: sullivang
Getting back to the Yamaha action, I'm just reading about the real grand repetition mechanism. Apparently a note can be repeated when the key has been released approximately 50%, which matches the GH/GH3 measurement we have obtained nicely, EXCEPT of course that on a real grand, the damper does not contact the strings at that 50% release point. On the GH/GH3, we're observing a termination of the note at the 50% point. I'm puzzled.

That should be fixed, shouldn't it? I wonder how much the universal coopting of MIDI note-on=0 for note-off has to do with it? Without clear information as to what the keyboard is doing, the sound module is forced to make assumptions that may or may not be optimal.
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#1388929 - 03/05/10 01:02 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: dewster]
sullivang Offline
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Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Yes - the fault was mine - I read Peter's post too quickly.

Btw, my Kawai MP9000 terminates at the 50% return point too. (and I'm almost certain it only has two sense points)

Greg.

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#1388943 - 03/05/10 01:19 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: dewster]
sullivang Offline
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Registered: 07/05/09
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Loc: Sydney, Australia
Originally Posted By: dewster

True, but a single channel of MIDI over USB probably does, as USB enforces quality of service.


Is there a reason they'd have to restrict the bandwidth to such a low rate, in a configuration that does not have any physical 31.25kbaud connections (i.e - just USB)?
Also, I believe that USB has a real-time mode, where data delivery is not guaranteed.

Quote:

Yes, I agree. I think if they are doing anything (not that I distrust you or your report in any way) they are perhaps somehow exploiting the second contact normally employed for quick repeat notes.


Yes - agreed.

Quote:

That should be fixed, shouldn't it? I wonder how much the universal coopting of MIDI note-on=0 for note-off has to do with it? Without clear information as to what the keyboard is doing, the sound module is forced to make assumptions that may or may not be optimal.


Agreed. There is no message for "prepare for a note retrigger". smile Btw, Pianoteq's voice count incremented for each retrigger - it overlapped multiple voices. I'm not sure whether it overlapped to the same extent as it seems to when using the sustain pedal or not. (it might have been more, or less - I haven't checked)

Greg.

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#1388984 - 03/05/10 02:04 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
dewster Offline
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Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4343
Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: sullivang
Is there a reason they'd have to restrict the bandwidth to such a low rate, in a configuration that does not have any physical 31.25kbaud connections (i.e - just USB)?
Also, I believe that USB has a real-time mode, where data delivery is not guaranteed.

Not sure what bandwidth they use for the stream, but evidently you can get more for bulk dumps and such. Not sure how strictly manufacturers adhere to this:

http://www.usb.org/developers/devclass_docs/midi10.pdf

Originally Posted By: sullivang
Agreed. There is no message for "prepare for a note retrigger". smile Btw, Pianoteq's voice count incremented for each retrigger - it overlapped multiple voices. I'm not sure whether it overlapped to the same extent as it seems to when using the sustain pedal or not. (it might have been more, or less - I haven't checked)

The MIDI note-off message contains velocity information. I wonder if they could exploit that somehow e.g. use note-on velocity to add energy, note-off velocity to subtract/damp.
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#1389201 - 03/05/10 07:58 PM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: dewster]
sullivang Offline
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Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
I have a new assertion: I'm a complete MOOSEBREATH!
I don't think the Casio has any intermediate decay rates as the key is released at all. It might sense the release velocity (as Peter proposed), but I had a slightly unfriendly shop assistant breathing down my neck and I didn't have the patience to test it properly.

I am fairly certain, though, that I was able to invoke the third sensor. I could retrigger the note with a partial release. (hooray!). I did this very slowly, too. There wasn't a big distance between the normal off point to the mid point, but it seemed quite definite.

Now, regarding repetition performance, if you go to 2:16 in this V-Piano clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PLsNgJELxpU , and watch how he tests it, I think the Casio performed well when played in that same, subtle manner. When played more forcefully, with two alternating hands, I couldn't get it to repeat with consistency. It could be the amount of bounce in the action. When I played the Kawai CN22, the action seemed very well "damped" - like an acoustic action. (and I realise this isn't even their best action)

Greg.

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#1416858 - 04/14/10 06:38 AM Re: Yamaha GH(E) versus GHS key action [Re: sullivang]
sullivang Offline
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Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2207
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Earlier in this thread we were discussing the MIDI messages that a triple sensor action would send. I've received a response from Casio (via a retailer). As we kind of suspected, a partial release and subsequent key press does send a new Note-ON. Casio didn't actually state that a Note-Off is NOT also sent, but I think that's a given.

The fancy VAX-77 also behaves like this, ref:
http://www.forum-pianoteq.com/viewtopic.php?pid=10636#p10636
and I assume Yamaha's GH3 and Roland PHAIII would be the same.

Greg.

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