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#1979329 - 10/27/12 03:53 PM Casio AP-620
newest student Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/26/12
Posts: 23
Loc: Eastern PA
Hi All. I am new to Piano World and so far found many of the topics very enlightening. I am a very new, but older adult piano student and I greatly appreciate the forums.

I am learning to play on an old acoustic spinet that we have had for the kids to play, and if my interest in piano continues, I would like to upgrade to a new digital piano, probably in late spring of 2013. I have made a commitment to myself to take lessons for at least that long to determine if I have the skills or motivation to continue to play. I am thinking that I will upgrade once I am convinced that I want to continue serious study.

I have a few questions that I hope you will consider answering, in terms of buying a new digital piano.

1. The Casio AP-620 piano interests me, as it is in my price range and has the features that I believe will help me develop as a student. I have no objection to buying on the Net, or in a local store, so long as I can get a good price. I have no objection to assembling it myself either. B&H out of New York has a current price of $1299, with no state tax and free shipping. If I were to order today, is there a way I could get a better price than that?

2. I know that many Internet dealers offer better pricing for all types of electronics as the holidays approach, especially during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Is this true of piano pricing, and what kind of discounts might I expect to see over the pricing available today?

3. I have recently seen that Casio has announced an upgraded line of digital pianos, including the AP-650. Do you believe that the 650 offers significant improvement over the 620 for someone such as me? Bear in mind that I am a new student(although motivated to learn), my hearing is not the best (probably in the 40Hz-8Khz range), and I never expect to be a concert pianist. But as an electrical engineer, I enjoy bells and whistles and would like to avail myself of the new learning techniques available via the Internet.

4. And finally, assuming that the AP-650 is introduced in the US fairly soon, what would you expect the price of those to be? And as long as the supply of 620's lasts, what kind of pricing on the 620 could I expect after the 650's are widely available? Are these things like last year's model of a Chevy on a dealer's lot after the new ones are introduced?

I am thinking that the 620 would fit my needs, and I can wait to look for a bargain. On the other hand, if I could get an outrageously good price on a 620 at Thanksgiving, I may just not wait to buy!

I will appreciate any help you can provide. Thank you in advance!

Bruce

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#1979333 - 10/27/12 04:15 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: newest student]
galaxy4t Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/28/08
Posts: 854
Loc: Lakewood, CA
The AP 650 will not be available until some time next year--probably first quarter. Two of the slab style PX-150 and PX-350 have begun to show up at stores. My advice would be to try the AP-620 and then play the PX-350 as that is similar to the 650 in terms of what is on it. You want to determine if you prefer the new acoustic piano sound on the PX-X50 line to the AP620. Also you want to note your preference for key action. The new Casios have a brand new action. Once you decide on your preferences, you can better decide if you want the AP-620 or the 650. If you can find a PX-850 that will be similar as well but won't have the additional sounds, rhythms, and drum loops that the PX-350 and AP 620 have. Bring a decent pair of headphones when you go to try out the pianos so you can evaluate the sound. Music stores tend to be noisy.


Edited by galaxy4t (10/27/12 04:18 PM)

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#1979414 - 10/27/12 07:31 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: newest student]
PianoWorksATL Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/19/09
Posts: 2735
Loc: Atlanta, GA
The last time we had digital sale in our store, our price for the AP-620 for local customers, including full assembly, home delivery and tax was within just a few dollars of the B&H price. Try to support local unless you simply cannot get helped. B&H may have a return policy, but just try to repack a 620 in the layers of cardboard.

I don't know what the increase for the new models will be but I expect it will be noticeable. I think waiting 3+ months (and maybe longer) would be much more damaging to your momentum as a student than weighing the benefits of a new model not yet priced or formally due to arrive. The AP-620 is a bargain (compared to competition) at regular price and would serve you now.

Good luck in your search.
_________________________
Sam Bennett
PianoWorks - Atlanta Piano Dealer
Bösendorfer, Estonia, Seiler, Grotrian, Weber & Hailun
Pre-Owned: Yamaha, Kawai, Steinway & other fine pianos
Full Restoration Shop
www.PianoWorks.com
www.youtube.com/PianoWorksAtlanta

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#1979416 - 10/27/12 07:33 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: newest student]
andy0140 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/27/12
Posts: 26
You may wish to read my post on the 650...

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#1980135 - 10/29/12 03:31 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: galaxy4t]
newest student Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/26/12
Posts: 23
Loc: Eastern PA
Thanks, Galaxy4T. I will check out the PX line also.

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#1980137 - 10/29/12 03:32 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: PianoWorksATL]
newest student Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/26/12
Posts: 23
Loc: Eastern PA
Thanks for the info Sam. I'll check pricing at our local stores before I purchase.

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#1980138 - 10/29/12 03:33 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: andy0140]
newest student Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/26/12
Posts: 23
Loc: Eastern PA
Thanks for the heads up, Andy.

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#1980464 - 10/30/12 09:52 AM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: newest student]
leemax Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/16/10
Posts: 501
Loc: pacific nw, usa
I have had a 620 for a couple of years now and am very pleased with it. I have played a number of other DPs since getting it, many of them more expensive, and have as yet found no reason to want to replace my 620. I recently played one of the new Privias, which I believe has the same sound engine and keys, and I was not really pleased with the sound and definitely did not like the textured keys. I'm not sure what the 650 will sound like, but I think for the keys alone I would not want it. I would heartily endorse your purchase of the 620! (As a business owner, i would also encourage local purchasing if at all possible.)
_________________________
Lee

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#1980505 - 10/30/12 12:08 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: leemax]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1903
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: leemax
I have had a 620 for a couple of years now and am very pleased with it.


In contrast, much like OP, I purchased the Casio AP-620 based on the hype and was disappointed for much the same reason. The decay time of a single tone was much too fast for me.

I would have returned it except as one other poster mentioned, good luck with putting the DP back in the box.

So, I sold it at a huge loss ... immediately.

Live and learn
_________________________
Don

Current: ES7, Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 audio device, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focal CMS 40 Powered Monitors, Ravenscroft275, Ivory II American Concert D, Pianoteq 5

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#1980677 - 10/30/12 07:17 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: newest student]
BillTheSlink Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/24/12
Posts: 108
Loc: Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
I am currently trying to decide between the PX-350, the AP-620, or wait for the AP-650, or at least I was. I spoke to Tim at AZ Piano News, http://azpianonews.blogspot.com who is also a wholesaler and one of the most informed people I have found who will really take time to talk to you. I recommend you check out his reviews and maybe even talk to him before you do anything. He said from what he heard the AP-650 will not hit until March or April and the main changes are really the USB sound recorder instead of using one of those SD cards and you are supposed to be able to simulate the way a grad piano changes its sound when the lid opens and is angled by opening and closing a little flap lid at the top of the AP-650, along with some changes to the action. The trade off is that it should cost several hundred more according to sources. He said as far as the lid thing most beginning piano players will not have a trained enough ear to hear a difference for ten years, and if you have hearing loss then you may never (I am in the same boat and asked the same question). For the money he said he wouldn't wait if it was him, but that was totally my preference. I detected no hard sales pitch what so ever. I just need myself to decide if easy access to prerecorded MIDI files is more important to me (AP-620), or recording audio files on a flash drive (PX-350)


Edited by BillTheSlink (10/30/12 07:18 PM)
_________________________
Currently I am without a piano, but when I get mine back I will be working on "The Complete Piano Player", as well as Neely's "How to Play from a Fake Book. I am spending my time working on theory and learning how to construct chords currently.


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#1980697 - 10/30/12 08:40 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: BillTheSlink]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1903
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: BillTheSlink
I am currently trying to decide between the PX-350, the AP-620, or wait for the AP-650, or at least I was. I spoke to Tim at AZ Piano News, http://azpianonews.blogspot.com who is also a wholesaler and one of the most informed people I have found who will really take time to talk to you. I recommend you check out his reviews and maybe even talk to him before you do anything. He said from what he heard the AP-650 will not hit until March or April and the main changes are really the USB sound recorder instead of using one of those SD cards and you are supposed to be able to simulate the way a grad piano changes its sound when the lid opens and is angled by opening and closing a little flap lid at the top of the AP-650, along with some changes to the action. The trade off is that it should cost several hundred more according to sources. He said as far as the lid thing most beginning piano players will not have a trained enough ear to hear a difference for ten years, and if you have hearing loss then you may never (I am in the same boat and asked the same question). For the money he said he wouldn't wait if it was him, but that was totally my preference. I detected no hard sales pitch what so ever. I just need myself to decide if easy access to prerecorded MIDI files is more important to me (AP-620), or recording audio files on a flash drive (PX-350)


Yep, Tim's Review was what tipped me in the direction of the AP-620. I was soon to regret that decision.
_________________________
Don

Current: ES7, Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 audio device, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focal CMS 40 Powered Monitors, Ravenscroft275, Ivory II American Concert D, Pianoteq 5

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#1980704 - 10/30/12 08:56 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: dmd]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2635
Originally Posted By: dmd
In contrast, much like OP, I purchased the Casio AP-620 based on the hype and was disappointed for much the same reason. The decay time of a single tone was much too fast for me.

I would have returned it except as one other poster mentioned, good luck with putting the DP back in the box.

So, I sold it at a huge loss ... immediately.

Live and learn


@newest student & BillTheSlink,

Yes, be aware of the short decay on both the AP-620 and the AP-650 as neither model has sufficient decay with sustained notes, either with or without pedal. There are other digitals (not Casio) that do not have the short decay.

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#1980708 - 10/30/12 09:07 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: pv88]
Possum SP280Krome Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/23/10
Posts: 624
I would try the PX-350 and consider possibly that with the custom stand and pedals for a "psuedo" console.

If I were to buy a console type piano- I would get from someone in the same line of business as Sam- a strictly piano store.
We have an excellent retailer of Yamaha's here in South Jersey named Jacobs Music- and a friend brought 2 Clavinovas from them-

I strictly buy slabs only because of the portability, transport, and having to return a Yamaha last week- was easy to get a replacement.

That being said, I played the Casio AP620 a few times over the last few years at Sam Ash in NYC (only place around me that had one). I was very impressed buy it, but thought to myself it would be a bear to assemble and return.

Even felt the same about the PX830 at the time-seemed to be a good fit, again but what about the assembly

One idea is to look at the 850 or even 620 manual and look at the assembly instructions-
Is this going to be something difficult to assemble? What if you need to return it?

If there is something wrong with the 620 you have to think about how easy it is to schedule a UPS pickup or transport it back to be shipped.

I had 4 screws only to connect my P105 to the stand and then realized a key came broken- no bigee unscrew it and place it in the box.

In my opinion, if you can wait, try out the 650 if you have time and do not need to purchase right away.

There is an defintite improvement from the px130 to the px350, but I still like the 130.
_________________________
Roland Juno Gi
Casio PX-130
Korg Krome 61
Korg SP280

Rokit KRK 6 monitors
MXL V67G microphone

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#1980713 - 10/30/12 09:20 PM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: dmd]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2635
Yes, it is true that both the Casio AP-620 & AP-650 have very short decay samples, and, the resulting tonal resonance remains thin, overall. Also, there are other digitals that have far better decay and sustain, with Roland & Kawai.

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#1999248 - 12/14/12 03:18 AM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: andy0140]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2635
Originally Posted By: andy0140
You may wish to read my post on the 650...


@newest student,

Here is the link to andy's thread:

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/1985491/Casio%20AP-650.html

It appears that no Casio to date (including the newest model, AP-650) has sufficient decay in the sampling, as this is an issue that makes it difficult to play a long sustained melodic line over an accompaniment, or, to sustain full chordal passages, as the harmonic resonance fades away too quickly.

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#1999272 - 12/14/12 05:48 AM Re: Casio AP-620 [Re: newest student]
jrcallan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/06/07
Posts: 367
Loc: Pennsylvania
Newest student:

Nobody's opinion here is gospel. Play the pianos and make up your own mind. It's you that has to live with the piano.

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