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#1566387 - 11/29/10 01:48 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: apple*]
sam235813 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/24/08
Posts: 54
Loc: middle america
Originally Posted By: apple*
there are some interesting points being made. ... and yes, I can imagine Glenn Gould on an avantgrand. they have a sterility i think he would enjoy.

sterility in a very in tune, good sense.
especially given that his last Golberg set was done on a yamaha.
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#1566407 - 11/29/10 02:16 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4441
Loc: San Jose, CA
Given Gould's love of editing (in his time, only available on magnetic tape), and since we now have the ability to play back from disc onto a real piano... yes, I think he might have just loved it. In that way, anyway.

Also, given his very painful injuries, the much lighter touch and greater adjustability of the keyboard's height and position might have afforded him some relief.

Editing is not exactly an easy job, though, even if the tools are easier to use now than the white pencil marks on tape and demagnetized straight razor of his day.

It's true he was a germiphobe, but his favored instrument voicing was not sterile at all... not to my ear.
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#1566462 - 11/29/10 04:45 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
ToneCanvas Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/27/09
Posts: 32
Loc: Colorado
I don't think it's a matter of "digital Keyboard (let's not even use the word 'piano' in describing the digital instrument) VS. piano (no need to use 'acoustic' in front of that word.) While the two instruments have similarities, they are different instruments altogether. Each offer different things to the musician. Digital keyboards (depending on the instrument) offer different sounds, accompaniments, arranging capabilities, and even tuning possibilities that a piano does not offer. The piano offers tactil feedback and tonal sonoreties that a digital sampling technology can capture (although some are getting close!)

I wish we would stop thinking about digital keyboards and pianos as competitors. It's not like saying "Should I get an iPhone or a Blackberry?" They're competitive smart phones. It's like saying "Should I get a laptop or an iPhone?" They are both computers, but they do different things and serve different purposes.
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Yamaha GC1

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#1566470 - 11/29/10 04:56 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
Jonathan Baker Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/09/09
Posts: 475
Loc: New York City!
Electronic speakers cannot yet imitate the resonance and depth of tone of any acoustic instrument. If and when that obstacle is surmounted then the game changes - but not yet, and not by a long shot. An electronic speaker box does not vibrate air the way an acoustic instrument does, and the difference is dramatic.

The type of music matters: a heavy metal rock band keyboardist at a stadium does not have the same performance and aesthetic issues as a classical pianist playing a Chopin nocturne at a recital hall. Electronic keyboards have their place in the music world, and so do pianos.

As mentioned by others in a couple of previous posts, the organ community has been going through this debate for the past 50 years. Electronic instruments simply do not produce the physically palpable sonority of a real pipe organ, and the same holds true of pianos.

In my living room both I have both a Casio keyboard, and Steinway 7-foot grand. If I play the Casio by itself, it sounds fairly realistic. But if I then play the Steinway, the competition is over. No matter how loud I turn up the volume on the Casio, it never remotely close to replicating the physical resonance of the Steinway when put to the test. The sound of the Casio (or Yamaha, or Roland, etc.) simply has no physical presence, and it all gets down to the technological limitations of the speakers.

Will electronic keyboards & speakers ever equal a concert grand? My attitude is the same as to whether I believe in aliens from outer space: I'll believe it when I personally witness it and not one second before...
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Jonathan Baker
http://www.BakerPianoLessons.com/index.htm

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#1566479 - 11/29/10 05:05 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: ToneCanvas]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5282
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
Originally Posted By: ToneCanvas
I don't think it's a matter of "digital Keyboard (let's not even use the word 'piano' in describing the digital instrument) VS. piano (no need to use 'acoustic' in front of that word.) While the two instruments have similarities, they are different instruments altogether. Each offer different things to the musician. Digital keyboards (depending on the instrument) offer different sounds, accompaniments, arranging capabilities, and even tuning possibilities that a piano does not offer. The piano offers tactil feedback and tonal sonoreties that a digital sampling technology can capture (although some are getting close!)

I wish we would stop thinking about digital keyboards and pianos as competitors. It's not like saying "Should I get an iPhone or a Blackberry?" They're competitive smart phones. It's like saying "Should I get a laptop or an iPhone?" They are both computers, but they do different things and serve different purposes.


Well, I for one don't like the term digital referring to the AvantGrand since it lumps it in with all the digital keyboards that don't have a grand piano action. I prefer hybrid though I know that causes problems with some folks.

If you go to Yamaha's AvantGrand web site (see my signature) you can read Pianist's Message where three concert pianists offer their comments. For practical purposes, the AvantGrand reacts in all respects as a true acoustic piano and should be regarded as a piano. I know this will ruffle the feathers of those with a vested interest in selling, tuning and repairing pianos, but as a player it's simply a piano to me.
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#1566481 - 11/29/10 05:06 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
PianoMan1958 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/13/10
Posts: 502
Loc: Tennessee
Well said, Jonathan
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Plays:
Yamaha C5 grand (home)
Kawai KG5 grand (church)
Roland RD300GX digital (jazz group)

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#1566493 - 11/29/10 05:22 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Jonathan Baker]
bitWrangler Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/07
Posts: 1789
Loc: Central TX
Originally Posted By: Jonathan Baker
In my living room both I have both a Casio keyboard, and Steinway 7-foot grand. If I play the Casio by itself, it sounds fairly realistic. But if I then play the Steinway, the competition is over. No matter how loud I turn up the volume on the Casio, it never remotely close to replicating the physical resonance of the Steinway when put to the test. The sound of the Casio (or Yamaha, or Roland, etc.) simply has no physical presence, and it all gets down to the technological limitations of the speakers.


Whoa, you're comparing a $70K+ Steinway to a $1K Casio and saying that the Casio doesn't match the sonics of the Steinway and using that as an example of why DP's don't match up?

The issue isn't just one of speakers, but it's the entire chain. If one went out and hooked up a $60K stereo system (designed to reproduce piano sonics well, there is a difference) to a Avant Grand, how many people listening would be able to tell the difference? I'm not taking a stand one way or the other, because I've not done the A/B myself, but my feeling is that many folks would be hard pressed to tell the difference (other than the obvious differences between the Yamaha house sound and the S&S).

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#1566531 - 11/29/10 06:03 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
Roger Ransom Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/19/05
Posts: 1288
Loc: SouthWest Michigan
But the OP asked whether the acoustic will EVENTUALLY go the way of the typewriter.

The fact that I'd rather play my G7 than my FP7 is not the point. Will it happen in 10 years? 100 years? 1,000 years? Will there even be pianos in 1000 years?

Without a time frame the question is really not easy to answer. I would say that if the desire is there that EVENTUALLY the acoustic piano will be replaced with electronic pianos (digital? who knows in the far future).
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#1566592 - 11/29/10 07:50 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Dave Horne]
ToneCanvas Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/27/09
Posts: 32
Loc: Colorado
Point well-taken, Dave! I was trying hard to tip-toe around a conversation that took place on this board about the semantics of calling a digital piano a "piano." But the pianoforte (loud/soft) instrument is definitely captured in many digital/electronic/electric instruments.

I'm on the AvanteGrand website now. Judging from the sound of the instrument on their website it certainly sounds lovely. I own a Yamaha GC1 and a Roland FP4. Many on this board will turn their noses up at both, but I love both instruments. My Yamaha is what I play every evening, but last week when I traveled to new Mexico for Thanksgiving it was great to take my Roland and still practice everyday! And hooking it up to my computer and playing with sounds and arrangements has only broadedned my musicianship.

And as far as I'm concerned, anything that gets people (or keeps people) making music gets a thumbs up from me! Digital piano, jaw harp, blowing into an empty bottle, Whatever! laugh
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#1566617 - 11/29/10 08:38 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Clavier Übung]
Baroque Style Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/09/09
Posts: 34
Loc: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Anyone knows which DP can closely imitate the touch of a harpsichord? I am interested in learning Harpsichord.

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#1566627 - 11/29/10 08:55 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Baroque Style]
FormerFF Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/26/08
Posts: 476
Loc: Roswell, GA, USA
Originally Posted By: MandarinTree
Anyone knows which DP can closely imitate the touch of a harpsichord? I am interested in learning Harpsichord.


Roland does make a digital harpsichord. If harpsichord touch is what you are looking for in a digital instrument, that's probably as close as you are going to get.

DP's are all going to mimic a piano.
_________________________
Piano self teaching on and off from 2002-2008. Took piano instruction from Nov 2008- Feb 2011. Took guitar instruction Feb 2011-Jul 2013. Can't play either. Living, breathing proof some people aren't cut out to make music.

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#1566668 - 11/29/10 09:57 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: bitWrangler]
Jonathan Baker Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/09/09
Posts: 475
Loc: New York City!
Originally Posted By: bitWrangler
The issue isn't just one of speakers, but it's the entire chain. If one went out and hooked up a $60K stereo system (designed to reproduce piano sonics well, there is a difference) to a Avant Grand, how many people listening would be able to tell the difference? I'm not taking a stand one way or the other, because I've not done the A/B myself, but my feeling is that many folks would be hard pressed to tell the difference (other than the obvious differences between the Yamaha house sound and the S&S).


I thought about what you wrote, and that is helpful in thinking this all through. It is very likely that most people cannot hear the difference between an acoustic instrument and a recording of it. But we are not most people, we are ourselves, and we know what we value in the musical experience. I acknowledge that one very important aspect I value when playing a really great piano is the 3-dimensional quality of the sound. The sound of a great piano (or voice, or other instrument) has a palpable, physical presence. I do not yet feel that presence through even the most expensive speakers. I may hear the approximate tonal quality, and certainly the decibel level, but not the physical embrace of the sound.

This may have a lot to do with the fact that we hear not only through our ears, but through bone conduction, and our entire bodies, actually, vibrate with the sound to a significant degree. When I am sitting at, or near, a great piano, the vibrations resonate through me, and that has a great deal to do with my listening experience, and most definitely when I am playing.

Electronic keyboards are here to stay, and perhaps acoustic engineers will eventually discover how to vibrate air waves in new ways that are fully equivalent to a grand piano.

By the way, the price tag you put on my piano would be correct if it were brand new. It has been in the family since 1932, however. I only mention that because I do not want to be confused with those more wealthy pianists who are able to purchase the best grand pianos on a whim. I understand that Van Cliburn has around twenty pianos in his home...
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http://www.BakerPianoLessons.com/index.htm

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#1566674 - 11/29/10 10:13 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Jonathan Baker]
bitWrangler Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/07
Posts: 1789
Loc: Central TX
Originally Posted By: Jonathan Baker
The sound of a great piano (or voice, or other instrument) has a palpable, physical presence. I do not yet feel that presence through even the most expensive speakers. I may hear the approximate tonal quality, and certainly the decibel level, but not the physical embrace of the sound.


I would agree that there is definitely something special about having the real deal right there. Our piano isn't that large, but it's large enough in the room that it's in to be quite wonderful. That said however, have you ever listened to a good set of electrostats or Magnepans? They have a wonderful "airiness" about them that I absolutely love (esp Maggies) that goes a long way towards making the instrument feel like it's "right there" without screaming "I'm emanating from a cone in a box" (regardless of accuracy).

Personally I don't think the challenge is so much to faithfully reproduce the sound, it's to do it in such a way as to be both practical and affordable. That a DP can get you 90% of the way there for 10% of the price is one of the (if not _the_) biggest advantages of a DP (let's not haggle numbers, it's the gist that counts).

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#1566764 - 11/30/10 12:33 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
SoundThumb Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 03/28/10
Posts: 346
Loc: San Diego, CA
You got it exactly right, bitWrangler. The DP gets you 90% of the way there for 10% of the cost. However, as someone who recently got an acoustic grand to put next to my trusty Fantom X8, I have to say I am really enjoying that last 10% (even as I continue making payments on the extra 90%.)

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#1566889 - 11/30/10 05:40 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
bennevis Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5527
I'd think that for a lot of people, a high-end DP is really the only way. I play only classical music and am a recent DP convert, when I bought my V-Piano to use at home with headphones (it's either headphones or nothing in my situation), and only intended it as a practising tool to get me through to my occasional foray on a concert grand that I intended to hire at a studio. But that idea soon went out of the window, when I realised how responsive the V-Piano was to whatever I wanted to throw at it, whether it was a delicate Chopin nocturne, a fizzing Scarlatti Sonata with rapid articulation, or a barnstorming Rachmaninov Etude-tableau. In fact, I could do things on my DP that I couldn't on most upright acoustics (especially stuff that involved rapid repeated notes like Ravel's Gaspard) and could really let myself go with ppp and fff, knowing that the V-Piano could easily cope - I never missed the acoustic grand at all.

I think that as digital modelling (rather than sampling as on every other DP) becomes standard in the years to come, the DP will take over for most musicians except in concert halls - and maybe even that too for smaller venues. Incidentally, the V-Piano is featured in Larry Fine's Piano Buyer (Fall 2010 supplement to his The Piano Book).
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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#1566891 - 11/30/10 05:49 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
geraldbrennan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/14/08
Posts: 77
Loc: ann arbor, mi
That a DP can get you 90% of the way there for 10% of the price is one of the (if not _the_) biggest advantages of a DP (let's not haggle numbers, it's the gist that counts).

We're talking about real vs unreal. Can you be 90% pregnant?
Not a snob here, as previously charged, but these are two different worlds!
Nor am I judging the intrinsic value of the two formats. Some actually prefer playing and listening to DPs. GOOD FOR THEM! I have nothing against them. Everyone needs to listen to and play what they like.
But I have made much of my living for 40 years playing real and DPs, and find them spectacularly dissimilar.



Edited by geraldbrennan (11/30/10 05:50 AM)

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#1566927 - 11/30/10 07:29 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5282
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
Let's not forget that we're not just comparing apples with oranges, the AvantGrand is more like a genetically engineered apple. smile

Guys, by calling the AvantGrand a DP you are lumping it in with all the other DP's, thus I feel the need to add to the discussion ... and I'm tired of doing that.

For practice purposes (for those purists among us) and for hotels, restaurants, churches, cruise ships, etc., for the rest of us, the hybrid piano is just fine. I feel no lacking in performance at all.

I really do not see the need for 230 tunable strings under many tons of pressure for practice purposes and even for some performance venues.

Sorry, gotta go ... and practice on my 90 percent piano. smile I'm not sure but I think the 10 percent that's missing is that very slightly annoying feeling I have three days after a tuning when the G an octave and a fifth above middle C starts to go out of tune. I ain't got that feeling. smile
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#1566928 - 11/30/10 07:32 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
apple* Offline


Registered: 01/01/03
Posts: 19862
Loc: Kansas
a genetically engineered apple.. huh?

like a delicious. I am looking forward to the chance to try an Avantgrand.
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love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)

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#1566953 - 11/30/10 08:17 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
David Burton Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 1759
Loc: Coxsackie, New York
Finding myself wide awake after quite a day involving among other things finding out that the old dog we rescued a few years ago finally managed to get to go to doggy heaven by being hit by a truck, I decided to revisit this thread and read through it.

DP vs. AP and whether the AP's will survive, is … unanswerable as stated because nobody knows the future. Just a few days ago, I had a dog and was pretty sure she would hang on for maybe a year or two more, though I began to wonder whether she might be developing cancer.

The subject at hand hangs on several ideas that are also imponderable (and boy we can often see people get into tremendous emotional clashes over things that cannot be decided); we take for granted that so many things are going to be there including piped “music” which isn't even intended to be critically listened to, paid attention to.

Not only are there musicians but there are people who listen to music, each with a different set of attention parameters. I once played two versions of a movement from a symphony well known to me but unfamiliar to my audience without telling them I was going to be doing this. After I was done, I asked them if they knew they had been listening to two versions of the same thing. A surprising number said that they thought the two selections were different pieces; on some level they hadn't paid attention. Maybe they were pondering where they would have to be later or what they would have to do. Many I realized hadn't the capacity to hear things the way I am accustomed to. Connoisseurs? No, just people that have a propensity (whether innate or learned) to pay attention.

The future? We assume that the lights and electricity shall never go out, that current living conditions shall continue, that being right around the corner from a new Dark Ages is unthinkable. But the truth is, none of us can be sure of anything. This may be my last post on Piano Forum. Who knows? In short, deciding now on the future of any musical instrument and getting heated about it, strikes me as a bit silly.

What I said before, when the lights go out, as during a power outage, I can still play my AP no matter how out of tune, etc. it may be. The DP after all has not only that limitation, but in every way it's reproduction has to be artificially created, and sorry and I will make this point, digital representation of acoustic wave forms is “as close as one pleases without actually getting there” as a mathematics professor described limits to me once and I don't think that whether a DP is to mimic a piano, a violin, a cello, etc. makes much difference.

Perhaps the best thing about a DP is that it doesn't have to sound like any acoustic instrument we are familiar with and therefore can sound like … a bunch of electronically generated noise, which is also just fine because it leads in a completely different direction; one uses a DP to create music that has only the remotest resemblance to “classical” music. Several years back I was interested in Techno music, even believed it to be the music of the future, and thought I might even “compose” some, but then what is such music for? Who listens to it and for what? How much of it sounds the same as anything else using similarly generated sound? In the final analysis, I didn't want to “crank out” merely atmospheric sound that would form a discreet part of the decoration of some space like a restaurant, hotel or even office (there was once a bank branch in Manhattan where a pianist played show tunes on a small grand piano to create a certain mood that worked … for a while, so even an AP can be used to create music that isn't really being attentively listened to.).

So when one needs to play late at night when all's asleep, there's the DP (and headphones), but when the lights go out and one can really only play during daylight hours (as was the case for much of the periods described as baroque, classical, romantic, etc.) then I guess only the AP will do. Honestly one of the main drawbacks for me with DP's was that I had to turn them on. Progress is imaginary as we have lost as much as we have gained, often more so.

So, we also might want to reckon with what we've lost and stand to lose by having the old acoustic music fall out of favour, as it already pretty much has done. One result, and we certainly have much more music widely available through recordings etc. is that music, all music, is not listened to in the same way it was even a hundred years ago, when only live performances were available and participation in music making was actually more widespread than it is now. Consider what we've lost. I could maybe make similar arguments for every single fine art including possibly cuisine, flower arranging and other decorative arts as well.

We have more music, as we have of everything else to attempt to keep us from boredom, but it doesn't get anything like the same respect.

Best...
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#1566982 - 11/30/10 09:20 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5282
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
David, sorry to hear about the dog you rescued.

There's a certain irony in what you write in that you are writing here and now because of electricity. If it weren't for that you really would be on the typewriter though it would take some effort to reach everyone in that manner. smile

Of course the piano will survive, there will just be fewer bought and fewer made but on major concert stages they will survive. No one disputes that, right? (Perhaps someone in the business can state with some authority what the purchase patterns have been over the last 20 years or so.)

I wrote a letter (snail mail as I recall) a few years ago to register my complaint with the Atlanta Ballet. It seems they couldn't afford to pay the orchestra to perform Swan Lake so the ballet troupe performed with (against?) a CD. I'm sure this had something to do with cutbacks and that truly saddened and infuriated me. Somehow bringing prerecorded music into the concert hall was the final straw for me. (I guess since prerecorded samples are used in the AvantGrand and other DP's you could use the same argument I suppose.)

Well, the thread continues .... smile
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#1567039 - 11/30/10 10:45 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Dave Horne]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7301
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: Dave Horne

Guys, by calling the AvantGrand a DP you are lumping it in with all the other DP's, thus I feel the need to add to the discussion ... and I'm tired of doing that.



Then maybe you should give it a rest. You don't want to become the snazzyplayer of the Piano Forum, do you? grin

Even though the Avant satisfies your personal requirements for an instrument, it will not satisfy everyone's. Also, the line of demarcation that you aree drawing between it and all other digital pianos is really just a reflection of your own priorities. Another person could say that he bought a certain Kawai model because it satisfied his requirement for a wooden action. Another could say that he bought a Roland V for its abilities to customize the sound. The Avant doesn't work for everyone. A lot of us need a measure of portability more than we need its grand piano action, impressive array of speakers, or stylish cabinet. For someof us it's just too expensive to make sense.

The success of digital pianos in general is based on cost/performance, availability through sales channels that most people seem to prefer these days, diverse functions at the push of a button, connectivity to other electronic faves such as the personal computer, and the privacy it allows for one to experience one's own music of choice, whether as a player or as a listener.

In contemporary society in developed countries there are many indications that people prefer to communicate electronically. Members of a family or living group spend more time at their individual computers than they do communicating with each other. Many young people prefer text messaging to being up close and personal or even vocalizing over a bandwidth. A music player with headphones allows for a cozy retreat into the world of one's own preference rather than sharing the music of others. All of this may be seen as good or bad depending on your point of view.

To access what one wants and avoid what one doesn't want, electronic connectivity is king. The acoustic piano has no provision for that. I hope it survives and have many reasons to think that it will, but it's going to be expensive. There's no doubt that labor costs are rising in China. There's no doubt that Indonesia is only a transitional stop for piano manufacture in that its domestic sales market for acoustic pianos is tiny. There's no doubt that piano makers in developed countries will need to fetch high prices to sustain low production numbers.

Let's just hope that those who have the passion have the coin, and that those less fortunate can satisfy their needs and wants from the used market.
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#1567065 - 11/30/10 11:22 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5282
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
Also, the line of demarcation that you aree drawing between it and all other digital pianos is really just a reflection of your own priorities.

Well, yes and no. At the moment the AvantGrand is the only digital piano with a real grand piano action. That alone sets it apart from the other DP's. That's the only reason I bought. Had the N3 not been introduced I would have bought another GranTouch. For me (for practicing) the grand piano action comes first with the sound a very close second.

The snazzypiano remark - I don't know who that is or his history. smile
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#1567080 - 11/30/10 11:46 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14263
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Quote:
There's no doubt that piano makers in developed countries will need to fetch high prices to sustain low production numbers.


Completely correct.

And while being scoffed at by some, China will be the biggest ally for us poor Westeners.

Norbert
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#1567101 - 11/30/10 12:14 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
bennevis Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5527
At present, the Chinese are buying acoustic pianos like there's no tomorrow, thus keeping the piano business afloat. The rich Chinese buy Steinway, Bosendorfer etc; the others buy Young Chang. The world of classical music is going to be kept alive by the Chinese, as more and more Westerners are brought up on X Factor, mediocrity and pop, and the only 'classical' music they'll ever hear is Roll Over Beethoven (where Roll Over are the first names of the composer called Beethoven).
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#1567337 - 11/30/10 05:40 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
David Burton Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 1759
Loc: Coxsackie, New York
"The world of classical music is going to be kept alive by the Chinese, as more and more Westerners are brought up on X Factor, mediocrity and pop, and the only 'classical' music they'll ever hear is Roll Over Beethoven (where Roll Over are the first names of the composer called Beethoven)."

It's actually worse than that. Mention Beethoven to lots of people and they think it's the name of a dog.

PS: DP's have an on/off switch. AP's can always be played.
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#1567371 - 11/30/10 06:19 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: David Burton]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5282
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
PS: DP's have an on/off switch. AP's can always be played.

That's true though the better half and\or the neighbors might get annoyed depending on the time you decide always is. What you look at as an advantage can be easily turned into a disadvantage. smile

When I owned my C3 I had a deal worked out with a piano tuner\friend\trumpeter for whom I made specialized practice tapes. He tuned my C3 up to six times a year.

What does a typical tuning cost these days? How much would six tunings a year set me back today?
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#1567382 - 11/30/10 06:43 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19640
Loc: New York City
I think the fact that an acoustic piano can be played when the electricity fails is irrelevant unless one lives in a country like Iraq. In the U.S. I think the total time I've been without electricity during my entire life is about two days.

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#1567412 - 11/30/10 07:41 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
Gary Allen Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/15/09
Posts: 141
Loc: Tennessee
There have been a lot of fascinating perspectives from this post. Something that stands out is that the European members whom have commented seem to strongly feel that digitals will "take over". Each person has his own take on this matter--some opinions appear a bit subjective while other appear more objective.

It is difficult to ignore our own preferences, biases and personal experiences when speculating on the outcome of something which can only be guessed at.

Are decreased accoustic sales a more a statement of our battered U.S. economy (including, but not limited to, the declining middle class) or changing tastes in entertainment/music...or both?

Those that have played only accoustic or only digital are, in my (not so) humble opinion missing out on something very enjoyable. I tend to use my digital more as a practice piano and tend to spend more time on it than my grand. I use my grand for true playing/ performing and pure enjoyment. Please don't ask me to give one up but if I had to, I would definitely keep the accoustic grand! There is great virtue in both and I hope they both survive and thrive! It is indeed quite sad to see so many piano dealers closing up.

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#1567523 - 11/30/10 11:12 PM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Norbert]
Bob Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/01/01
Posts: 3895
Originally Posted By: Norbert
Quote:
There's no doubt that piano makers in developed countries will need to fetch high prices to sustain low production numbers.


Completely correct.

And while being scoffed at by some, China will be the biggest ally for us poor Westeners.

Norbert


And Piano makers may find it less than profitable to sell in the US market, and concentrate instead on China and other developing countries.
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#1567576 - 12/01/10 01:41 AM Re: Will Accoustic Piano Ultimately Go Away Like The Typewriter? [Re: Gary Allen]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7301
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: Gary Allen


It is difficult to ignore our own preferences, biases and personal experiences when speculating on the outcome of something which can only be guessed at.


Yeah, it's difficult, but many people don't even try. They display their biases like merit badges.

As Apple remarked, this doesn't have to be an either/or. If people want it to make it an either/or for themselves, that's fine. There are as as many members on the digital forum who dismiss acoustics as there are members here who belittle digitals.

However, if young people really want to become play-for-pay pianists these days -- even if they favor the classical repertoire and have a strong preference for acoustics --. they should become comfortable on a variety of digital keyboards including synthesizers and workstations. Regardless of what the instrument is, some players can extract more from it than others. Young players contemplating a keyboard career should learn to extract all that is musically available from each category and stay current with keyboard products as they evolve.

Short of those few elite pianists who are able to launch a concert career with a splash and sustain their popularity over a long career, precious few working pianists are able to call the shots on what they play and what they perform it on.

Originally Posted By: Gary Allen
Are decreased accoustic sales a more a statement of our battered U.S. economy (including, but not limited to, the declining middle class) or changing tastes in entertainment/music...or both?


It's both, but there's something else involved. The retail model for piano sales, which seasoned pros like Steve Cohen defend as the only workable approach to marketing acoustic pianos, turns many people off these days. They don't want to deal with nebulous pricing, the Totentanz ritual of price negotiation, and commissioned sales pros with a canned spiel. That's true in any product category, not just pianos. It's too bad in a way because there are a lot of good piano sales pros who do listen and who do share good product knowledge with customers, but the arena in which piano selling is conducted simply turns many people off. That's why Sears finally ditched the salesmen in cheap suits and polyester ties standing around waiting for the next opportunity to move a dishwasher or refrigerator in favor of the Blue Crew. Most retail product categories have adapted to the times better than pianos, whatever the reason.
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