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#1807940 - 12/18/11 03:47 AM Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
I was frustrated from my last gig that I just made an impulse decision and in the same afternoon, I had already ordered the NP 88.

I have to admit that I didn't spend hours and hours playing an NP 88. In fact, it's been a couple of months since I've touched one but my memory of it was good. And this was with whatever samples they had at GC. It wasn't necessarily the newest.

I play jazz and in a band setting, the Roland FP7F just wasn't cutting through the way I want. The piano sound is thin and with the light keys, it's very easy to sound metallic.

So yes I will miss the fancy keyboard and the FP7F sounds good in solo piano. But my single line solos don't sing and I don't like that.

It's been discussed here how your sound is only as good as your PA, so I purchased a new EV ZXA1 powered speaker on a stand. Then I added an Allen & Heath ZED-10FX as a pre-amp/mixer/EQ. With supposedly top of the line everything, I listened to the recordings and it was still awful.

I've now gone the same way as some other gigging musicians here and went for the NP 88.

I feel like some of us reinvented the wheel by going through the same cycle of keyboard choices. I recall Pianozac switching from Roland SN pianos to an NP88 for gigging.

I still have a Steinway so I'm not concerned about losing technique from a lower grade "keyboard" feel.

So am I out of mind?
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Hamburg Steinway O, Nord Piano 88
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#1807943 - 12/18/11 04:16 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Kawai James Online   content
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 8401
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
So am I out of mind?


Not at all!

Congrats on your purchase - Clavia produce some excellent instruments, and in a jazz setting, the Nord Piano 88 is terrific.

James
x
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Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

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#1807946 - 12/18/11 04:23 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
maurus Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/11
Posts: 753
+1 to what James said. Enjoy your new red one! And let us know how you get along with it!
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Shigeru Kawai SK-2, etc.

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#1807960 - 12/18/11 07:17 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Emeritus Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/01/10
Posts: 28
Loc: Maine
I think you will be very pleased with the Nord NP 88. It is light, svelte, and red. After becoming acquainted with the stock sounds, download and try the Bright and Bosie pianos. Congratulations on your purchase and on your progress as a pianist.

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#1807979 - 12/18/11 08:33 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
bfb Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/11
Posts: 531
Loc: Atlanta GA USA
keep us posted on your experience with it. i'm interested in a light weight board for performance, and the NP88 is near the top of the list....
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Ivory II Grands, Italian, American D; Galaxy Vintage D; Alicia's Keys; Garritan Steinway; Galaxy Pianos; The Grand 3

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#1808023 - 12/18/11 11:18 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
dewster Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4272
Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
I play jazz and in a band setting, the Roland FP7F just wasn't cutting through the way I want. The piano sound is thin and with the light keys, it's very easy to sound metallic.

When Roland puts a SN piano in something AFAIK it is always the "Concert Grand" voice in the RD-700NX. It's a more complex piano sound that is fairly dark when played lightly but can get strident when pushed harder - as a result it really demands headphones or a high fidelity stereo sound system to sound good, which isn't your average PA or keyboard amp scenario.

It's too bad they didn't make the NX "Studio Grand" available in the NX FP-7F beacuse it sounds somewhat simpler / cleaner to me, and it definitely handles dynamics better. If you run across the NX in a shop you might want to give the Studio a quick try. If you do, I recommend these settings (which sound pretty good through the stereo amp & speakers I put together):

Code:
Tone Character       : +3
Sym. Resonance Depth : 80
Reverb               : OFF
Chorus/Delay         : OFF
Compressor           : OFF
Sound Focus          : OFF
EQ Low               : +3 dB
EQ Low Mid           : +3 dB

I hope the NP 88 works out for you, I'd love to be able to use that large free library of uploadable samples! (If they weren't looped I probably would.)
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#1808025 - 12/18/11 11:25 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
voxpops Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/20/07
Posts: 2918
Loc: Oregon
Jazzwee, that's going to be a really nice Christmas present - congratulations!

I, too, will be very interested to hear how things go for you. It's certainly got some great piano samples to choose from.

On a side note, I'd be fascinated to hear from "true" jazz players who have used either of the newer Kawai MPs in an ensemble context. I have a feeling that those boards would also work very well for that purpose.

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#1808072 - 12/18/11 12:46 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Thanks for the supportive comment guys. I do feel kinda wacky making such a rush decision. But when I hear that metallic thin sound in the recording, it just grates on me.

If I do a recording direct from the FP7F, it doesn't sound like that. I wish I understand why it's so different in a live environment. Maybe it's because I hit the keys harder to compete with other instruments like the amplified bass, the sax and trumpet. Horns are so much louder than a regular piano.

Aside from the FP7F, I have live recordings with the same kind of amplified band using grand piano and that really sounds good to me. Though I always have to mic a grand to compete volume wise.

The lighter weight will definitely be a big plus. Normally I have to ask for help to lift the board + case onto my SUV or to move it to my stand. So having the ability to do it all myself is a good change. But I didn't even mind that.

What makes me so unsure though is the lack of heavy discussion of the NP 88 here. So it makes me think that very few actually have this. You all sound happy you got a guinea pig to try it out for you smile
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#1808076 - 12/18/11 12:57 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
voxpops, how about you? Any second thoughts on the FP7F? Do you know what I'm talking about on the metallic sound? There's a non-SN voice in the 'Other' sounds. Piano1, Piano2 and Piano3. Piano 2 seems to stand out more and is less metallic at a high velocity. But is still too thin live. Sounds good at home though.

If I set the touch setting to Heavy, then the character of the sound doesn't stand out in the mix even more, though for different reasons.

It's been months of frustrating trial and error without a solution.

And frankly, I'm not even certain the NP 88 will solve it since there's little discussion of it.
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#1808148 - 12/18/11 03:09 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Emeritus Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/01/10
Posts: 28
Loc: Maine
Jazzwee: I am looking forward to your own evaluation of the Nord NP 88 with your new PA in a jazz group setting. I have been using the NP 88 for the past nine months with stock sounds through a Traynor K4, solo through septet. This last month I downloaded XL versions of Bosie and Bright pianos and have used them on two jazz gigs. So far so good, but I am waiting for more unsolicited feedback from the group and audience. The slimmed-down size of the Nord is a major plus--it permits more space for the bass or drums in tight quarters, and it more easily fits into private party rooms. I assume you ordered the music stand and the soft case. If not, I do recommend them. The music stand is particularly well designed and wide. I have the Nord keyboard stand, but have not opened the package and will probably sell it. I am using a Roland portable Z-stand. My prior gigging rig was the Yamaha S90ES--worked fine, but heavy and big. My impetus for acquiring the Nord was generated by forum advice. I'm glad I listened.

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#1808154 - 12/18/11 03:13 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
voxpops Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/20/07
Posts: 2918
Loc: Oregon
Jazzwee, I do know what you're talking about. I had a jazz standards gig last night (which I was a bit worried about, as I'm not really a jazz player), and I was going back and forth trying to decide which piano to use. As it was just piano and vocals (no band) I was tempted to use the FP-7F, but it's such a pig to move around (bulk as much as weight) that I settled on the FP-4, since I also wanted the internal speakers as monitors. The FP-7F sounds really nice in a solo/duo context, but it does have a slightly mellow/dull character, which transforms into a kind of hard-edged sound at high velocities. I would not attempt to use it with my band, as I know that that tonal character would get swamped most of the time. (BTW, I haven't really tried to use any of the 7F's non-SN AP sounds.)

On the other hand, the MP6 seems to have the precise opposite tonality. When playing solo it can sound harsh and unforgiving, but cuts through beautifully in a band setting. The band I play in spans the gamut from progressive to blues, but only flirts with jazz, so I'm not sure how jazz players would respond to it. It's clear, bright tone would probably work very well.

At the moment I generally use the Numa Piano for band gigs, as its low weight and good basic sounds deliver most of what I need. However, the bottom end is not as powerful as most of my other boards.

Surprisingly, I think the FP-4 is a better jazz piano keyboard than the SN models. It's still a Roland, but it seems to sparkle a little more than those with SN sounds. The action is a bit of an Achilles heel, but I'm used to it and find it quite workable - probably not really any worse than the NP88's action. The slightly annoying thing about the FP-4 is that low velocities don't give the warm, mellow richness that the SN pianos deliver. Last night I needed a Rhodes sound for a few numbers, and the FP-4's Rhodes really is quite a bit better than the 7F's.

As for the NP88, there actually was a lot of discussion about it on this forum a year or so ago. Zachary Forbes was at the center of those discussions, and as his main use for the NP was jazz, it'd be worth your while doing a search for some of those threads. Zachary just loved the NP. Unfortunately, when I had it I soon got frustrated with its limitations. For a lot of my band work I need a wider dynamic range than is possible with the NP, and I no longer think that Nord's EPs are the benchmark. Also, at the time that I owned one, I had a partially modeled piano to compare it to, and I found the Nord's samples less inspiringly implemented despite their wonderfully quirky and individual characteristics. That, coupled with the not-so-brilliant action meant that I decided not to keep it. That said, I loved the AP choices on offer from the library. Also, I'm sure the NP can hold its own easily in a jazz combo situation, and the smaller dynamic range might actually be an advantage then.

Personally, I wouldn't worry too much about the impulsive nature of your decision, jazzwee. Something triggered the decision, and it was probably the right thing to do. And please don't allow what I (or others) say color your own opinion or make you have second thoughts - these are just personal opinions, not facts.


Edited by voxpops (12/18/11 03:16 PM)

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#1808163 - 12/18/11 03:46 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
dewster Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4272
Loc: Northern NJ
Yes, sorry jazzwee, I should have added that I think you're probably doing the right thing too. I haven't seen the NP 88 in person, but it sure looks good on paper and some people here love it for gigging. Even assuming the NX could get the sound you're looking for (who knows) lugging that long and heavy thing around town wouldn't be much fun.
_________________________
The DPBSD Project!
THE RD-700NX Thread!
DPs Exposed! (nekid pichures!)

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#1808170 - 12/18/11 03:58 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
EssBrace Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2331
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
I've owned FP-7F and Nord Piano. I still have the Nord. I had the Nord before FP and still own it whilst the FP has gone. Whatever Roland have achieved from a technical standpoint, which is undoubtedly impressive, is also really rather boring and curiously lifeless. It is pristine but sterile in my view.

I've said it a hundred times but the transition to metallic nastiness in the midrange of Roland SN pianos can be quite unpleasant. The Nord is full of personality and the variety of sounds makes sure you are unlikely to tire of it.

I think regrets are unlikely jazzwee. Enjoy your NP88.

Cheers,

Steve
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Yamaha CP1

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#1808234 - 12/18/11 05:12 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Dave Ferris Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1675
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
Good luck with it...I think you'll like it better then the Roland
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2005 NY Steinway D, Nord Piano 2

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#1808303 - 12/18/11 07:48 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: Emeritus]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Originally Posted By: Emeritus
Jazzwee: I am looking forward to your own evaluation of the Nord NP 88 with your new PA in a jazz group setting. I have been using the NP 88 for the past nine months with stock sounds through a Traynor K4, solo through septet. This last month I downloaded XL versions of Bosie and Bright pianos and have used them on two jazz gigs. So far so good, but I am waiting for more unsolicited feedback from the group and audience. The slimmed-down size of the Nord is a major plus--it permits more space for the bass or drums in tight quarters, and it more easily fits into private party rooms. I assume you ordered the music stand and the soft case. If not, I do recommend them. The music stand is particularly well designed and wide. I have the Nord keyboard stand, but have not opened the package and will probably sell it. I am using a Roland portable Z-stand. My prior gigging rig was the Yamaha S90ES--worked fine, but heavy and big. My impetus for acquiring the Nord was generated by forum advice. I'm glad I listened.


Emeritus, thanks for the info. I didn't realize you already had an NP 88. You're recommending the Bosie? I thought most others I read recommended the Grand Lady D for jazz. I'm excited to see what it all sounds like. I don't even know what was in the NP 88 at GC that I tried.

I have an Quik loc WS-550 stand. This may end up being to big for the NP 88 now but it's ok for my current venues. My band is big, sometimes it's a septet so we occupy a lot of space sideways. The Quik Loc is probably more of an issue of depth so it will probably be ok.

I have an old soft case for a Casio Privia so I presume that will be large enough for the NP 88.

I used to have an S90ES too. That's quite a while ago now. In the past I have stuck to Yamaha so this Roland was the first Roland for me.

There's not been much Nord advice here before (I searched). At least compared to Roland/Yamaha, it's a small fraction of the traffic.

It is interesting though that Nord only gets talked about by gigging musicians. I guess it found its niche.
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Hamburg Steinway O, Nord Piano 88
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#1808307 - 12/18/11 08:01 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: voxpops]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Originally Posted By: voxpops
Jazzwee, I do know what you're talking about.


Voxpops, now that I still have the FP7F, the most non-metallic piano patch with body is the Piano 2 (Other). That's actually acceptable to me as a sound. Probably less dynamic control though since it's not SN. I was banging hard on it and it still sounded good. Unfortunately, analysis at home is always shallow because most of my gigs are in a dry-dry room with acoustic tiles and carpet. And even if I add reverb it just starts getting shrill. So my opinion on the Piano 2 is tentative.

It's true that in a Jazz band (especially amplified), the dynamic range needed is usually narrow. I can see why when you're a solo accompanist to a vocalist that your needs would be different. I think actually that the FP7F would still be good for that environment. Maybe more so than the NP88.

For me it's more about a strong sustain on the piano sound. Sometimes I'm tempted to use EP on an entire gig but I guess I'm too much of a piano man to just rely on that.

BTW - my jazz teacher is a Nord artist (as well as Yamaha for acoustics) and it's actually suprising I didn't spring for a Nord sooner. It's probably because I considered the keyboard feel to be paramount before.

Now I'm less concerned about that.
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Hamburg Steinway O, Nord Piano 88
My Blog

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#1808308 - 12/18/11 08:06 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: dewster]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Originally Posted By: dewster
Yes, sorry jazzwee, I should have added that I think you're probably doing the right thing too. I haven't seen the NP 88 in person, but it sure looks good on paper and some people here love it for gigging. Even assuming the NX could get the sound you're looking for (who knows) lugging that long and heavy thing around town wouldn't be much fun.


dewster, you're right. I'm already having problems lugging around an FP7F. For the same reason, I wouldn't consider a CP5 either. Just back breaking.

If I'm just playing at home, I would have had no complaints on the Roland since I have made some nice recordings from it. It may even sound good in a room with good natural reverb. But gigs don't give us the luxury of proper acoustics. I hope that what's for one enviroment is not bad for another (meaning I hope I not transferring a problem rather than solving it).

Does the RD700NX have those same non-SN piano patches I found on the FP7F? Just curious.
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Hamburg Steinway O, Nord Piano 88
My Blog

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#1808310 - 12/18/11 08:11 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: EssBrace]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Originally Posted By: EssBrace
I've owned FP-7F and Nord Piano. I still have the Nord. I had the Nord before FP and still own it whilst the FP has gone. Whatever Roland have achieved from a technical standpoint, which is undoubtedly impressive, is also really rather boring and curiously lifeless. It is pristine but sterile in my view.

I've said it a hundred times but the transition to metallic nastiness in the midrange of Roland SN pianos can be quite unpleasant. The Nord is full of personality and the variety of sounds makes sure you are unlikely to tire of it.

I think regrets are unlikely jazzwee. Enjoy your NP88.

Cheers,

Steve


Yours is a very valuable opinion, Steve, since you're one of those that observed the same thing and went the same direction.

I'm curious as to this "full personality" you find on the Nord. Some of the Youtube videos I've seen doesn't necessarily remind me of the sound though it really felt good playing it (like I said 2-3 months ago). So while I still don't have the unit, I have this angst because I rushed to buy without trying it out one last time.

What sample do you gig with?
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Hamburg Steinway O, Nord Piano 88
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#1808314 - 12/18/11 08:18 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: Dave Ferris]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris

Not to sound like a speaker snob-but while the ZXA-1 is very good, especially at that price point, it can hardly be considered "top of the line".


The point though Dave is that the ZXA1 has a clean neutral output much like headphones. I may not have the bass of your fancy speakers but it should be able to show me the true colors of the keyboard.

Since I don't have to play in the lower registers (without offending the bass player smile ), it's really about a clean sound from mids up.

So having a unit that's been called 'cleaner' than the twice as expensive QSC's, I figure I should have a true enough picture.

And the picture was unsatisfactory...BTW Dave, this was the first time I used the EV ZXA1 on a gig. Imagine my disappointment after spending all that money.

No the NP88 is not a real piano, and my expectations are very realistic for DP's. I just want it to sustain enough to make me sound like Keith Jarrett and then I'll be happy (even if it's a fake sustain smile ).
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Hamburg Steinway O, Nord Piano 88
My Blog

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#1808316 - 12/18/11 08:19 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
So what's this "Long release" and is it available on the NP88? There's so little said about this so I'm not sure I understand.
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Hamburg Steinway O, Nord Piano 88
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#1808321 - 12/18/11 08:27 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Kawai James Online   content
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 8401
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
jazzwee, I believe the Long Release was added with a recent firmware update.

James
x
_________________________
Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

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#1808334 - 12/18/11 08:39 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: Kawai James]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Originally Posted By: Kawai James
jazzwee, I believe the Long Release was added with a recent firmware update.

James
x


Thanks James. Sounds like it's a good thing but what is it?
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Hamburg Steinway O, Nord Piano 88
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#1808337 - 12/18/11 08:51 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Kawai James Online   content
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 8401
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
A brief Google found the following explanation:

With Long Release activated you get a slightly longer release more suitable for legato playing. This important feature reflects adjusting the damper tension in an acoustic or an electromechanical instrument.
The Long Release can be activated globally in the Nord Piano's Sound Menu and works on acoustic and selected electric pianos version 5.3 or later.


http://www.sonicstate.com/news/2011/09/09/nord-piano-gains-long-release-function/

Cheers,
James
x
_________________________
Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

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#1808344 - 12/18/11 09:02 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
James, thanks but not entirely clear still. I'm trying to understand how this relates for example to a real grand. Maybe I have to try it out to understand. Or perhaps those with an actual NP88 or NS2 could describe.
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#1808361 - 12/18/11 09:49 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
voxpops Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/20/07
Posts: 2918
Loc: Oregon
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
I have an old soft case for a Casio Privia so I presume that will be large enough for the NP 88.


I think you'll find that the Nord is slightly too deep for the Privia case. I use the Privia case for both the FP-4 and the Numa Piano, but IIRC I used a Roadrunner case for the NP.

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#1808362 - 12/18/11 09:52 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
voxpops Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/20/07
Posts: 2918
Loc: Oregon
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
James, thanks but not entirely clear still. I'm trying to understand how this relates for example to a real grand. Maybe I have to try it out to understand. Or perhaps those with an actual NP88 or NS2 could describe.


What I recall from playing both the Electro 3 and the NP88 was a rather strange, truncated release characteristic when damping a note. I think that the Long Release function will produce a more natural damping of the sound.

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#1808364 - 12/18/11 09:58 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Melodialworks Music Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/19/05
Posts: 1309
Loc: Canada
I'm considering the NP88 myself.
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#1808367 - 12/18/11 10:01 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
voxpops Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/20/07
Posts: 2918
Loc: Oregon
One thing to remember about the NP88 is that, even though it's still a DP, it's the only truly upgradeable piano from any of the major manufacturers. With luck, and goodwill from Nord, it should still be going strong years from now. And you should never get bored with it.

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#1808371 - 12/18/11 10:05 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
James Pun Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/25/11
Posts: 113
Another happy NP88 user here. I've been doing live gigs, studio work and a piano player for many years. I've never been so content with any other piano and the Nord has made my life delightfully simple.
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#1808388 - 12/18/11 10:51 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Kawai James Online   content
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voxpops, you're spot on.

Fingers crossed those lovely Swedes treat us Nord folks to a selection of new, large-sized EPs this Christmas!

James
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#1808392 - 12/18/11 11:02 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: voxpops]
jazzwee Online   content
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Originally Posted By: voxpops
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
I have an old soft case for a Casio Privia so I presume that will be large enough for the NP 88.


I think you'll find that the Nord is slightly too deep for the Privia case. I use the Privia case for both the FP-4 and the Numa Piano, but IIRC I used a Roadrunner case for the NP.


Which Roadrunner case did you get?
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#1808393 - 12/18/11 11:05 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: voxpops]
jazzwee Online   content
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Originally Posted By: voxpops
One thing to remember about the NP88 is that, even though it's still a DP, it's the only truly upgradeable piano from any of the major manufacturers. With luck, and goodwill from Nord, it should still be going strong years from now. And you should never get bored with it.


Is the design of the keyboard 'samples' based only or is there some modeling in existence already like for EP's?
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#1808400 - 12/18/11 11:26 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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James and voxpops, thanks for trying to shed light on the "long release". I presume it's intended to correct what is an abnormal behavior, and not adding a feature. right?
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#1808407 - 12/18/11 11:32 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
voxpops Offline
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Originally Posted By: jazzwee
Originally Posted By: voxpops
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
I have an old soft case for a Casio Privia so I presume that will be large enough for the NP 88.


I think you'll find that the Nord is slightly too deep for the Privia case. I use the Privia case for both the FP-4 and the Numa Piano, but IIRC I used a Roadrunner case for the NP.


Which Roadrunner case did you get?

I'm not sure of the model number, but I already had the RR keyboard porter (with wheels), and so used that. It's OK, except for the handle position, which tends to allow the case to run away from you.

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#1808410 - 12/18/11 11:34 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
voxpops Offline
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Originally Posted By: jazzwee
Originally Posted By: voxpops
One thing to remember about the NP88 is that, even though it's still a DP, it's the only truly upgradeable piano from any of the major manufacturers. With luck, and goodwill from Nord, it should still be going strong years from now. And you should never get bored with it.


Is the design of the keyboard 'samples' based only or is there some modeling in existence already like for EP's?

I really don't know, but suspect that it's mainly samples.

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#1808412 - 12/18/11 11:38 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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I already have the case with wheels too but it added a good 15 lbs to the weight of the FP7F. At this lighter weight of the NP, it may be easier to have a lighter hand carried case like the Casio one.

I guess there's no immediate rush since I still have the wheely version. It just seems like the other cases may be too deep and the DP will shake around inside.
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#1808416 - 12/18/11 11:42 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
voxpops Offline
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Originally Posted By: jazzwee
James and voxpops, thanks for trying to shed light on the "long release". I presume it's intended to correct what is an abnormal behavior, and not adding a feature. right?

That's my take on it. It's a very odd "feature" to add wink

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#1808420 - 12/18/11 11:47 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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I'm guessing here but on a real piano, gradual key release so that the damper is just in partial contact with the string causes a change in color on the sound and a soft landing on the cutoff of the note. Perhaps that's missing originally? I'm never actually tried to test that on a DP including the Roland.

If this is it, it would apply to slow slow finger legato then. Probably inconsequential to uptempo jazz but might affect ballads.
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#1810774 - 12/22/11 06:26 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Emeritus Offline
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jazzwee, the UPS Santa should have come down your chimney by now. So...

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#1810864 - 12/22/11 09:49 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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They misplaced it!!!!!!!

I'm waiting for a call to pick it up as soon as they find it. Maybe I'm on the bad list...

The ups truck already came and went with supposed location undetermined.
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#1810882 - 12/22/11 11:00 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
ZoeCalgary Offline
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Loc: Calgary Alberta
What! What does that mean!

All the best with getting it back to where it belongs...YOU!
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#1810918 - 12/23/11 12:48 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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I got an "Exception" message from UPS that it was "late" arriving at facility and so it was rescheduled to be delivered tomorrow. I'm not around tomorrow. So I called up UPS and we've been tracking it all day. They said there are so many packages right now it's like a needle in a haystack.

When the delivery truck came, he said it could be on the loading dock since his truck was full and he couldn't fit it. So I said hold it at the UPS facility and I will pick it up.

They said sure. Except they called me back again and said they haven't found it yet. GRRRR. If I miss this shipment, then with the holidays, I'm not going to see it till Dec 27. There goes my Christmas present in Christmas Red.

Anyway, there's still a chance I might see it tomorrow. Or maybe they can hold it for pickup by tomorrow night.

So frustrating...
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#1810930 - 12/23/11 01:03 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
ando Offline
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Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3340
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
I got an "Exception" message from UPS that it was "late" arriving at facility and so it was rescheduled to be delivered tomorrow. I'm not around tomorrow. So I called up UPS and we've been tracking it all day. They said there are so many packages right now it's like a needle in a haystack.

When the delivery truck came, he said it could be on the loading dock since his truck was full and he couldn't fit it. So I said hold it at the UPS facility and I will pick it up.

They said sure. Except they called me back again and said they haven't found it yet. GRRRR. If I miss this shipment, then with the holidays, I'm not going to see it till Dec 27. There goes my Christmas present in Christmas Red.

Anyway, there's still a chance I might see it tomorrow. Or maybe they can hold it for pickup by tomorrow night.

So frustrating...


They often give you the run around when they don't want to admit that they aren't sending parcels as quickly as they should. Sometimes you pay for priority shipping when it's actually being sent on a regular truck with all the other cheaper sent parcels.

I don't buy it when a shipping company says they aren't sure where a parcel is. It's all logged and they know where it is at all times. every time it changes location/vehicle it gets logged to its new position. That's the only way they can get any parcel to go anywhere. It's a very efficient system actually, but there is some deception involved. The tracking programs available to the public are not the same ones that they use internally. They lack a lot of detail so they can fudge the dates and times a bit. The reality is they try to limit the number to truck runs they do and put as much as they can on each one. Sometimes you are lucky and your priority parcel gets on the next truck leaving - when that happens your perception as a customer is that the service was very good value and that your parcel was a high priority. If you are unlucky and your parcel missed that truck and ends up on the next one, it can be delayed and then you end up wondering why the delivery time-frame doesn't seem to be holding up. That's when they start giving you vague information in the hope that they can distract you long enough for the parcel to arrive in the meantime. It really is luck of the draw a lot of the time, unless you pay megabucks for absolute guaranteed delivery times. The good news is that most parcels eventually get there, and undamaged. Your's will turn up soon enough. Hopefully in time for Christmas!

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#1810937 - 12/23/11 01:46 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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ando, I hope they're not lying to me when the lady I talked to 3 times today said she personally searched for the package and couldn't find it. Their volume is extraordinarily high, she said, and the stacks are big. She couldn't find a keyboard shaped box.

The other possibility, she says, is that it went out on the wrong truck, in which case it will be sorted out tonight.
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#1811548 - 12/24/11 12:06 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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LOVE IT! Thanks Santa!

Worst case scenario as always. One day late and at NIGHT. That's when the keyboard arrived. So quickly plugged it in and just gave it a play.

WOW. This has the sound I remember that has so much body. The piano sounds like you're playing a horn. Just played around with Grand Lady D which is loaded. This thing is just perfect for jazz.

The weight of the keys is great. Heavier than the FP7F so I felt more in control. Reminds me of the Casio Privia weight although it doesn't feel the same. And as hard as I hit on it, nothing metallic comes out. I may actually set it for a lighter touch at a gig, which is unusual for me since I'm used to the heavy weight on my grand. I surprised at the comments wanting more hard touch.

As I was playing this, I was thinking to myself. Did my playing improve? My tone and articulation just sounds so much better.

Now I had expected the board to be lighter. But I guess 36 lbs is still substantial. Not something I'd want to lug around in my arm.

Next thing to do is learn all about the OS and downloading samples etc. Maybe read the manual. I never do that. smile

My wife was a little shocked at the red color. "Really? You got a red keyboard? uh...OK".
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#1811553 - 12/24/11 12:23 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
voxpops Offline
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Posts: 2918
Loc: Oregon
So glad it arrived, and is not damaged. Not really worst case, eh?

Sounds like you made the right decision! Those gut feelings are pretty reliable, usually.

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#1811557 - 12/24/11 12:29 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Thanks voxpops.

UPS called me early in the morning -- "your package will be delivered before noon". Yeah right. At noon: well, I had to leave today and so I left my son at home while the rest of us went somewhere. Then I get back and it's still not here. I left again and and got back right before dinner. I thought I had to hold up going to eat just wait for this thing. Whew.

But I guess I need to be understanding. The truck driver says he had 800 items on his truck. The last delivery day before Christmas. So that must be close to that many number of stops. Wow.

So anybody want an FP7F?
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#1812116 - 12/25/11 03:58 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Siriosys Offline
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Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 136
Loc: Auckland, NZ
Congrats on your NP purchase and what a fantastic Xmas present!

I'm not sure what the rules are on this forum for promoting other ones, however, there is a dedicated Nord User Forum (www.norduserforum.com) which has some equally talented members as there are here and in fact, some of the members here, are members there......... myself included. There, you should find some great tips on updating, downloading sounds etc etc, however, it's all pretty easy stuff. I would certainly recommend you check the OS version of your instrument and ensure you're at the latest level.

Go grab that Bosie sample in XL format and upload and see how that grabs you. It's now my mainstay piano and I couldn't be happier. Although I'm using a Nord Stage 2, the sounds are identical and the long-release feature helps add so much realism with legato pieces.
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#1812126 - 12/25/11 05:20 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Thanks for the welcome Siriosys! I have a lot to learn here. I have downloaded all the sounds and OS update. I left to go to a party while it was downloading the bank to the Nord and I came back many hours later and it didn't take.

So here it is stuck again saying "Preparing Bank Download". Something got messed up.

I think maybe I should update the OS first.

Just from playing it yesterday and a little today, I feel really connected to this machine. This is such a good decision for what I do.

I still have the FP7F on the upper stand and an A/B test shows that thinness that bothers me. It's so obvious side by side.

Anyway, I hope I get it running again without too much trouble.
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#1812240 - 12/25/11 02:33 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Darn. Having such a difficult time loading the piano samples. Every time I leave my computer, it stops. And the only way to get it started again is to reboot the computer.

Fortunately, I loaded the Grands (which is mostly what I use) so maybe I'll take a break from this.

Got 1.44 OS loaded (came with 1.2). And my two favorite ones are the Grand Lady D and the Bose Imperial. I think with these two I'm functional.
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#1812260 - 12/25/11 03:13 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Dave Ferris Offline
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If you're having problems, contact this guy. He gets back to you pretty fast.

Pablo Mastodon
Nord Technical Support USA/Canada
(800) 994-4984 x3030
(813) 644-8480 (direct line)
Pablo.Mastodon@AmericanMusicAndSound.com
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#1812304 - 12/25/11 04:46 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Kawai James Online   content
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Registered: 09/06/07
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Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
Darn. Having such a difficult time loading the piano samples. Every time I leave my computer, it stops. And the only way to get it started again is to reboot the computer.

Fortunately, I loaded the Grands (which is mostly what I use) so maybe I'll take a break from this.

Got 1.44 OS loaded (came with 1.2). And my two favorite ones are the Grand Lady D and the Bose Imperial. I think with these two I'm functional.



jazzwee, sorry to hear that you're having some issues transferring sounds to your Nord. As you're no doubt aware by now, it can take some time to transfer the larger instruments, so I'm wondering if your screensaver, virus checker, or any other background applications are kicking-in and disrupting the transfer process? If possible, try to disable or close these additional tasks before starting the Nord software manager.

Also, are you using a Mac or PC? I have a small netbook running Mac OS X which I use almost exclusively for uploading samples to my Electro 3. Fortunately, I've never had any problems with the computer locking-up during transfers, I'm 'only' ever sending the 'L'-sized sounds, as the largest 'XL'-size do not fit within the Electro's memory.

Cheers,
James
x
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#1812317 - 12/25/11 05:19 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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James, I'm using Windows 7. Seems to be some intermittent USB problem and yes, it is possible that some CPU intensive task is affecting it as I have not turned anything off on the computer.

Is there a way to incrementally add a sample instead of loading the whole bank at once? Now that I have the Grands in there, I don't want to restart again from the beginning.

I'm not even close to filling up the memory. I should have 73mb free. But it just keeps stopping at some random point.

Dave - I didn't want to call anyone for support on Christmas day so I'm trying to figure out for the moment. Otherwise, that's great information. Thanks.
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#1812323 - 12/25/11 05:32 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Dave Ferris Offline
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Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1675
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
Originally Posted By: jazzwee

Is there a way to incrementally add a sample instead of loading the whole bank at once? Now that I have the Grands in there, I don't want to restart again from the beginning.


Are you using the "Nord Sound Manager v5.30 " ?

It was easy once I did that..otherwise, being the total computer idiot I am, I never would have been able to figure it out..

I'm on a 2.5 year old iMac with the older OS-X 10.5.8. I just went into the "sound manager" and individually deleted all the upright samples and grands to free up memory space and then loaded in the XLR samples of the Bosie and Yamaha Bright Grand. It took awhile for those to load -probably 20-30 minutes for each one, but it went very smoothly.

'Those two are all I need. The Bosie for more solo or ballad stuff and the Bright for cutting through in the group.

In any case give Pablo a shout tomorrow if you're still having problems.
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#1812326 - 12/25/11 05:43 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Before I started, I loaded the newest Clavia drivers for USB and the latest Sound Manager.

Initially, I tried to replace the entire bank before I changed the OS. AND THEN IT STOPPED. So then the keyboard had no sounds. I saw there was an old bug with this.

I tried updating the OS. It kept "losing connection" with the NP. After multiple NP restarts, it finally took and fortunately here there was no reboot of the computer which takes so long.

Then, after some many reboots later, I finally got the download started on the NP. I thought great, let me just leave it alone. I left it overnight and apparently it stopped at whatever I saw last that night.

My bank selection - I removed all the uprights, clavinets, harpsi. I just need EP and Grand. So looks like I can probably add one more Grand to the list.

Anyway, now that I have at least the grands loaded, this keyboard is great. I sound so different on this. Like I have more control over the character and dynamics in my solos. It's just so perfect for jazz! And that strong sustain on the tone is so forgiving compared to the FP7F.
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#1812352 - 12/25/11 07:51 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Figured out a workaround! Downloading entire bank is very buggy. Takes very long to do anything (20 minutes per sample). And then it always stops so I have to start again.

But downloading individual samples seem to work fast like 3 minutes apiece. I've already loaded 2 in a few minutes.

Wasted the last 2 hours on repeated rebooting.
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#1812354 - 12/25/11 08:00 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Kawai James Online   content
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Registered: 09/06/07
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jazzwee, what do you mean by 'downloading and entire bank'?

Up until now, how were you transferring the sounds if not dragging them onto the Nord Sound Manager individually?

Cheers,
James
x
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#1812446 - 12/26/11 02:45 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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James, I really didn't know what to do and then I saw the option Bank Upload/Download so that's all I used. I put all the sounds that was on the NP onto a folder. I replaced it with newer ones I downloaded from Nord Samples. Then I did a bank "download". This means I had to replace 500mb or so each time. Chances of timeout 99.99%.

I think there was a bug in the Sound Manager (new version).

I only figured out today that I could load samples individually. But I spoke too fast earlier. After 5 tries on the Bosie sample, it kept stopping so I gave up. Shorter samples didn't have an opportunity to timeout so they were fine. On the Bosie, I would get timeouts as far as 97%! What a waste of time.

I then loaded the older Sound manager (5.28) that was on the DVD, and it loaded the Bosie with no timeout and no reboot. So my opinion is that the new version (was it 5.8?) of Sound Manager is not ready for prime time.

I now have only the samples I need and I still have over 200MB available for something. I'm fully functional now with all the latest stuff.

I will probably email the support guy to let them know of my problems with the latest Sound Manager. I also turned on "Long Release", though I still have no idea what the difference is smile . Everything is sounding good.

I'm developing a preference for the Grand Lady D 5.3 over the Bosie. But I have both loaded and one C7.

I'll probably record something shortly here and give it an official whirl.

I'm officially a Nord convert!
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#1812707 - 12/26/11 03:48 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
PianoZac Offline
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Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 1421
Welcome to club red! I love my Nord instruments. Still using them all the time. Starting a new jazz trio in January and gonna hit the music performance career hard this year and I'm totally confident and totally equipped with my Nord Piano for all my piano work, both in and out of the studio. Like you said, if you've got a real piano, don't worry about loss of technique playing the Nord. I practice almost exclusively on my AvantGrand and do the gigging on the NP88. I purchased the Nord Gig Bags for both of my Nords and they are NICE. Well worth it. Built first class and attention to detail is second to none. I expect that though coming from a company like Nord. smile
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#1812738 - 12/26/11 04:54 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Kawai James Online   content
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Registered: 09/06/07
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Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Well said Zachary!

BTW, long time no see...good to hear you're progressing with your playing.

James
x
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#1812740 - 12/26/11 04:58 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
EssBrace Offline
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Yes, it's good to have him back!
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#1812967 - 12/27/11 01:23 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: PianoZac]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
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Loc: So. California
Originally Posted By: ZacharyForbes
Welcome to club red! I love my Nord instruments. Still using them all the time. Starting a new jazz trio in January and gonna hit the music performance career hard this year and I'm totally confident and totally equipped with my Nord Piano for all my piano work, both in and out of the studio. Like you said, if you've got a real piano, don't worry about loss of technique playing the Nord. I practice almost exclusively on my AvantGrand and do the gigging on the NP88. I purchased the Nord Gig Bags for both of my Nords and they are NICE. Well worth it. Built first class and attention to detail is second to none. I expect that though coming from a company like Nord. smile


Zachary, it's good you chimed in because you're the influence to move from SN Pianos to the Nord.

I don't think I'd lose technique from the Nord, even if I use it for practice. I like the weight on the keys. Substantial. Much more so than the FP7F. I think the Roland goes down too fast.

But what's forgiving about the sample is that you can't make it sound bad. There's no dynamic range that gives you poor tone (like the metallic sound at the higher dynamic ranges of the SN pianos).

I feel like I'm cheating smile It's too easy to sound like Keith Jarrett. If I can only do that on a real piano...LOL.
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#1813018 - 12/27/11 08:25 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: PianoZac]
Melodialworks Music Offline
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Originally Posted By: ZacharyForbes
Starting a new jazz trio in January and gonna hit the music performance career hard this year and I'm totally confident and totally equipped with my Nord Piano for all my piano work, both in and out of the studio.


Got any recording examples from your Nord that you can share?
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#1813054 - 12/27/11 09:46 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: Melodialworks Music]
maduro Offline
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gotta love that fire engine red.

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#1814251 - 12/29/11 06:05 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 1811
Loc: Rocky Mountains
Congratulations Jazzwee!
Been paying attention to your other thread on sound. Don't want to muck that up with an inquiry. When you get in some good time with your new Nord. Please let me know what you think of the key action itself.
To back up a little. I haven't ever played a Nord. From my understanding. The keys on the Nord are very much like the keys on a Korg SP250. That is....both have payed attention to what is most important in the key action without having to spend a ton on an actual grand piano key action in there. Not to mention weight and size. Please correct me, anyone, if I am incorrect here?

After you trying others. Now playing this. I'd like to know what you think. Take your time. Get in experience and get used to it. I know what you have already said about easy to change back and forth from your Grand to this. I'd like to know, in the end, if others agree with me that this type of keybed in a piano keyboard is actually the best trade off. Yes, I do mean for a portable stage piano keyboard. Not comparing this to something like an Avantgrand with actual piano keys in it.

Again....congratulations...sounds like you pulled the trigger right!


Edited by rnaple (12/29/11 06:06 AM)
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Ingrid, my beloved VPC : "Play it Sam....For old times sake...Play it for me...I'll sing it with you...Play me again, Sam."

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#1814484 - 12/29/11 02:09 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
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Ron, I've read various comments about people wanting a "heavy" setting on keyboard. So from this I was expecting some light feeling keys.

But the opposite is true. The keys feel pretty substantial. Certainly, it is significantly heavier than the Roland FP7F. Side by side (or top/bottom in my case), the FP7F almost accelerates down as you press on key. No friction whatsoever. The Nord is more realistic to me. There's actual friction going down which is to be expected of a real piano. This allows more control to me.

I noticed my LH chords are more easily controlled with the Nord than with the FP7F.

With the keys being heavier, I thought I'd need the 'light' setting. Haven't used it once and I'm playing 16th's without any issue.

Now this is still a DP and it still doesn't compare in feel to a real Steinway. But the closeness in weight feel to the grand is reassuring. For many people, this action would be heavy and in which case they might use the 'light' setting.

Like I said earlier, the weight of the keys seem to be similar to the Casio Privias. Not exactly the same feel going down but just the general weight. I haven't played a Casio in awhile so this is just a gut feel.

In summary, I have no problem with this action at all and this is coming from someone with the new Roland PHA III with escapement right next to it. I'm actually surprised because of all the negative comments I've read.

I may change my perception as I play more but this is how it stands after a few days. I'd say that so far, I've made a perfect choice for a Stage piano.
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#1814552 - 12/29/11 03:39 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
PianoZac Offline
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Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 1421
Jazzwee, I feel the Nord Piano action, while not in the league of the MP10 or certainly not my N1 or other real grand actions, it is just as responsive and very playable. It also weighs 39lbs, and is still able to accomplish a good solid action with an amazing sound engine. I find at gigs, the longer I play on it the more I like it. I think it's a fantastic compromise for piano and EP playing.
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#1814563 - 12/29/11 03:50 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
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Loc: So. California
Zachary, it's good to know I'm not alone.

I was just trying it out a moment ago and it's almost like the weight is graduated. Less at top and more as you reach bottom. Maybe this is why it works for me.

I can sense where I am. I can certainly feel where I am in a real grand action but I can't explain what allows me to feel that I'm getting the right velocity.

In contrast, I feel the weight is completely even on the Roland PHA III. Only the escapement notifies me I'm nearing bottom. Nothing tactile to alert me.

This is all a guess as it is hard to describe. I'll play around with the Roland vs. Nord tonight again some more to see if I have a better description.
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#1814914 - 12/30/11 12:41 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Had some more time to compare the action of the Nord Piano vs. Roland PHA III on the FP7F.

I tried it several times and I really feel that the weight on the Nord keys is graded so that the first couple of millimeters seem to be lighter than when you get to the bottom.

Secondly the Nords keys are deeper than the Roland's.

The Roland hits bottom pretty hard. The Nord has more resistance at the bottom so it's hard to bang on it.

Now with power turned off, the Roland's action seemed smoother while the lack of hard contact on the bottom of the Nord makes you want to push harder. This is also the moment that it is clearly apparent that the Nord keys have more resistance than the Roland PHA III.

With the sound on, I felt the exact opposite. The response curve on the Nord gives you max sound without having to worry about hitting bottom. On the Roland, you always hit bottom.`

This is all theoretical at this point so I tried playing some fast lines and I floundered on the Roland but played flawlessly on the Nord. I can definitely say then that theoretical issues aside, in actual playing, the Nord keyboard is superior to the Roland.

I have no idea if this has to do with velocity response curves or the physical behavior of the action. I used the default setting for both keyboards.

I even tried a little bit of Chopin Etude 10/1 on the Nord and I had better accuracy and control (and no I will not record it... smile ).

Separately, I banged hard on each key and compared the tone with the Nord. The FP7F really does have a nice tone until you hit a certain velocity in the middle C octave. That's where this awful metallic sound is. It's not there in the upper registers.

It also gets harsh and thin at the higher velocities while the Nord never does that.
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#1814990 - 12/30/11 06:26 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 1811
Loc: Rocky Mountains
May I ask you to do a little test?
Just tap on a key lightly. Just enough to get it to move. Right at the very start. Do you find a realistic resistance that lets off to very light? Like a real piano picking up the hammer?

Yes I'd agree with a similar keybed that many have said is the exact same. But it isn't (korg RH3). Although I haven't said it before. It does increase resistance toward the bottom. Like pressing on a key with a real piano hammer movement.

Yes, I've heard all the whining about klunky and so forth on both. But what the heck do people expect? It's like you said: It's easy to go back to the real piano from this. Why? The feel of the resistance is true to life. And yes... I do like my CDP-100. Not as much as the RH3 action I've tested though.

I really had to stay true to myself in admitting I liked the RH3 action of the Korg. I'm expecting the same in the Nord. That Nord you got is a whole bunch more instrument. smile
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Ingrid, my beloved VPC : "Play it Sam....For old times sake...Play it for me...I'll sing it with you...Play me again, Sam."

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#1814991 - 12/30/11 06:40 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: rnaple]
Aidan Offline
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Registered: 01/23/08
Posts: 371
Loc: UK
Originally Posted By: rnaple
May I ask you to do a little test? Just tap on a key lightly. Just enough to get it to move. Right at the very start. Do you find a realistic resistance that lets off to very light? Like a real piano picking up the hammer?


I also have a NP and the answer to your question is no. The phenomenon you're describing is only present in DPs which simulate a grand piano escapement mechanism. The Nord is not among these.
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#1814996 - 12/30/11 06:49 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 1811
Loc: Rocky Mountains
Perhaps I am just rationalizing the heaviness of the initial feel of the key? I don't find this as a big presence in the feel. I have to keep honest with myself and say it does feel that way.

Please don't let me carry on in thinking the nord and korg RH3 are extremely similar. I can only go on what others have said on the Nord and Korg. I have only felt the Korg RH3.
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Ingrid, my beloved VPC : "Play it Sam....For old times sake...Play it for me...I'll sing it with you...Play me again, Sam."

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#1815000 - 12/30/11 07:12 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Aidan Offline
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Registered: 01/23/08
Posts: 371
Loc: UK
I previously had a Korg SV-1 with the RH3 action. I wouldn't say they were "extremely" similar. To me, the Nord (Fatar) action is much more responsive and fluid than the SV-1's, which always felt somewhat sluggish in the return to me.
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#1815176 - 12/30/11 12:58 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: Aidan]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Originally Posted By: Aidan
Originally Posted By: rnaple
May I ask you to do a little test? Just tap on a key lightly. Just enough to get it to move. Right at the very start. Do you find a realistic resistance that lets off to very light? Like a real piano picking up the hammer?


I also have a NP and the answer to your question is no. The phenomenon you're describing is only present in DPs which simulate a grand piano escapement mechanism. The Nord is not among these.


rnaple, I was a little confused by your description here because escapement is at the bottom, not the top.

But Aidan is right. Escapement is present on the Roland PHA III. It is not something you'd find on the Nord.

When playing really lightly like in classical, Escapement gives a nice confirmation of the bottom. But on anything with more velocity I need some better confirmation of where I am in the key range and for whatever reason, the Nord (Fatar) action let's me feel that I'm reaching bottom. On the PHA III, I'll just blast right through and there might be occasions that I'll play a chord louder and with less control than I would on a real grand.

Again, I'm not sure why this is. I'm guessing it's the graded resistance but all I know for sure is that it translates to better playing. Here's a Keyboard action that doesn't get much positive press and I'm playing it better than the better marketed PHA III with escapement and ivory feel.

And PHA III is top of the line supposedly. Goes to show that there's more to it and a lot we don't quite understand.
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#1815589 - 12/30/11 09:32 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
Dr Popper Offline
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Registered: 12/30/09
Posts: 1706
Loc: Hancock Park LA (not again)
Reading all this .... I've pulled out the Nord Stage 2 and put it on a stand. I'm going to download some sounds tonight and give it another go.
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#1815645 - 12/30/11 11:16 PM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: Dr Popper]
Dave Ferris Offline
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Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1675
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
I like the Nord piano sounds and the action connection better then the Kronos on both the NP88 & NS 2 88.

The Kronos is very good (if & when it's working right wink ) but to my ears it still has a bit of a "veil" over the sound that resembles that processed synth, digital vibe to me. Speaking only of the APs obviously-synth and organ stuff are a whole other world. wink The Nord sounds and feels more earthy or organic to me...

I think the rhodes on the Korg are superior in sound to the NP88 ( I prefer the Nord Wurli) but as an overall instrument, I'd still have to go with the NP.

Curious to see what you think DP. I've had some very positive live gig, and live group playing in the studio, experiences just within the past two weeks with the NP88.
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#1815679 - 12/31/11 12:15 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: Dave Ferris]
Melodialworks Music Offline
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Registered: 07/19/05
Posts: 1309
Loc: Canada
Dave -

Have you ever used the Kawai MP10 as a controller for the Nord Piano? Superior keybed / action of the MP10, combined with the superior a. piano sound of the NP, methinks.

Lawrence
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#1815729 - 12/31/11 02:50 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: jazzwee]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 1811
Loc: Rocky Mountains
I greatly appreciate you all's input on this. I wasn't trying to deceive, or manipulate any thoughts. Just being honest. Also..in all honesty...I might be rationalizing? I look forward to trying out a Nord Piano someday.

I do also have to admit. From my days as an audiophile. It seems the very best is always underrated and has conservative info. advertising. They just let it speak for itself. In the end, it does so impressively. Just have to find out for yourself.
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Ingrid, my beloved VPC : "Play it Sam....For old times sake...Play it for me...I'll sing it with you...Play me again, Sam."

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#1815739 - 12/31/11 03:57 AM Re: Pulled the Trigger on a Nord Piano 88 [Re: Dave Ferris]
EssBrace Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2331
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris
The Nord sounds and feels more earthy or organic to me...


A good description!
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