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#2023809 - 01/30/13 03:44 AM Kawai CA Series
Ashley2013 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/29/13
Posts: 38
Hello,

My name is Ashley and this is my first post to your site but have been reading through it for months. It is such a wonderful and valuable source of information. I have been shopping for a digital piano for my new home. I am no longer in an apartment so I can actually get a piano that I can play aloud or without headphones. I have a Yamaha p155 that I am selling. There is nothing wrong with it and is very nice, but I just want a nice furniture-like pianonow.

I’ll keep it brief; I looked at Yamaha, Roland, and Kawai. For price, touch, and sound Kawai was the best choice. I played the Kawai CA65 and seemed so realistic in every way. So beautiful that I wanted to buy it immediately. The dealer mentioned that the Kawai CA95 sounds even better but he did not have one on the floor yesterday. He will have another on the floor by Monday. I can’t wait to try it and hear the difference. I can imagine it be better than the CA65! But I will wait.

Until Monday, can any owners of the Kawai CA65 and CA 95 tell me if there is a huge difference with sound quality, not just volume? Is almost $1,000 extra for CA95 worth it? I do want the best sound possible, but the piano is going into a den, not a huge room. However, I still want the best sound even at low to mid volume. So, it’s not as much about volume as it is about quality of sound at any volume.

Thank You for your time. I would appreciate the forums thoughts.
Ash

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#2023816 - 01/30/13 04:08 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
Dustin Spray Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/13
Posts: 51
Loc: Central Illinois
Welcome to the forum! I am a returing piano player after a near 13 year hiatus. About a month ago, I started thinking about all the good times I had in high school playing piano which lead me to start looking all my old sheet music. I started to think to myself, that I am kind of bored in the winter and would like to get back into piano. With that being said, I though a digital piano would be a good choice. I went to two music stores. One sold Yamaha, Roland, and Casio. I was set on Yamaha (because of the name). I played the CLP-440 & CLP-470 along with the Roland HP-503 and HP-505. For my taste the Rolands were too muffled and the action appeared to be noisy at low volumes. I was quite impressed with the Clavinovas CLP-440 and the CLP-470. A few people on this forum recommended that I try the Kawai CA65/CA95 line up. So I made plans to visit a Kawai dealership the following weekend. The minute I sat down at the Kawai CA65 I was sold on it! It played so wonderful and had a great sound along with many features that the Yamaha CLP-470 was lacking for about $800 less! I was ready to take it home that day. But held off, to do some more research. I concluded that the Kawai CA65 was the piano for me and went back the next weekend to buy it. I couldnt be happier with it. I play it so much, that I am afraid it is going to wear out. wink With that being said the CA65 and CA95 are basically the same two pianos. Only the CA95 has a actual wooden sound board to replicate the harmonics and vibrations or a real acoustic piano. I live in close proximity to my neighbors so, I am not prone to "rocking out" full volume so I didnt think it was worth the extra $1000 since most of my playing is going to be at a low volume setting or with headphones. I would think and decide this for yourself. But whatever your choice is between them, I am confident you will be pleased. The touch and response and as real as real can get in my opionion. Good luck! smile

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#2023827 - 01/30/13 04:44 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
Ashley2013 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/29/13
Posts: 38
Thank you, Dustin! So you are very pleased with the sound quality of the CA65 at all volumes? Can you still "rock out" with the CA65 when you get the urge to be loud? Im trying to justify that extra $1000, plus I plan to have the piano for many many years.

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#2023834 - 01/30/13 05:05 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
Dustin Spray Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/13
Posts: 51
Loc: Central Illinois
I am very pleased with the sound of the CA65. I haven't really cranked it all the way up and jammed out. I would wait until they have the CA65/CA95 both in stock and play them both side by side and see what you think. The extra $1000 for the 95 just wasn't worth it to me since most of my playing is late night and low volume.

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#2023860 - 01/30/13 06:31 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
StefaanBelgium Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/14/12
Posts: 53
Loc: Belgium
I have a CA65 myself and before buying, I looked into the 95 as well. To me, the difference soundwise was not big enough to justify the hefty price. The general consensus seems, that in lower soundlevels, there's practically no difference. The soundboard kicks in at half and higher soundlevels.
Whatever you choose, I think you'll be very happy with your future DP.
_________________________
Kawai CA65

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#2023875 - 01/30/13 07:13 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: StefaanBelgium]
Ashley2013 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/29/13
Posts: 38
Hi Stefaan, I must admit, I was perfectly fine with the sound of CA65 until the dealer put the CA95 in my head. I know he is just trying to do his job and make a living. I doubt I will ever tun it up much over half to make the soundboard to kick. But I think you answered my question that a low to mid level they both sound the almost same. Are you pleased with your higher volume of the CA65? Does the CA65 distort sound or tone at higher volume than half? I did not play it louder than 30-40% at dealer. Seemed pretty loud at that level but was in a showroom lots of glass and hardwood floors. Everything seemed loud in that showroom.

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#2023887 - 01/30/13 07:45 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
zrtf90 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/29/12
Posts: 2409
Loc: Ireland (ex England)
I reviewed the CA95 here: My CA95 Review

I only play it at full volume on the speakers and a shade under half with headphones. It's about as loud as an acoustic when you're sitting at it and certainly loud enough but it doesn't have as much carry away from the instrument. It's not excessive in neighbouring rooms and less when the door is closed.

On headphones it sounds identical to the CA65 but with the soundboard it is unique among digitals and well worth trying out. The big difference is that when you play the CA95 you can feel it, like you can when you play an acoustic piano; the sound goes through you and it's exciting.

It doesn't sound muffled or positionally vague on speakers the way most digitals do if you're used to the clarity you get on headphones.

I am still overcome from the joy of playing this fine instrument and memories of pianos and piano-playing occasions from the past are regularly being stirred. The increase in price is not significant over its expected lifetime.

At no time do I feel as if I'm 'just playing a digital'.
_________________________
Richard

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#2023899 - 01/30/13 08:16 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
StefaanBelgium Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/14/12
Posts: 53
Loc: Belgium
I always play at 50 %
_________________________
Kawai CA65

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#2023920 - 01/30/13 09:02 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
Kos Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/29/11
Posts: 77
Speaking of CA series, is there any hope for CA15? Or has the VPC kinda replaced it?
_________________________
"There is nothing to piano playing besides producing the appropriate velocities on the appropriate keys at the appropriate time" (c) qvfarns

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#2024033 - 01/30/13 12:40 PM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
Galuwen Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/16/10
Posts: 38
Hello,

I own it and I LOVE it !! Only one thing to say: If ya can afford it BUY IT. And buy the CA95 if you can play with speakers.

It is for me BY FAR the best piano on the market. Only the possibility to combine TWO piano sounds and tweak them to any type of piano on the market is UNIQUE !!

AND the option list is longer then any other digital piano !!

Alexander

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#2024097 - 01/30/13 02:58 PM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Galuwen]
Ashley2013 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/29/13
Posts: 38
I just stopped by the dealer again today to play the CA65 for 1/2 hour. I told him I am heavily researching the CA95 now that he got me interested. So, he said it really is that good and worth trying before I buy the CA65. He wanted me to get a feeling of what it would be like so he sat me down in front of a Kurzweil CUP2 turned it up and said play this, the CA95 is even better (and cheaper).

The Kurzweil action felt crappy, kinda cheap, and tone was not great but the vibration of keys with a full sound was awesome! Gives the sensation of a real acoustic- very cool! Nice glossy black finish but screw that for $4,300. Now Im dying to try the CA95 if it is anything like the sensation of the Kurzweil.

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#2024108 - 01/30/13 03:20 PM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: zrtf90]
SIG77 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/17/12
Posts: 30
Loc: California, US
Originally Posted By: zrtf90
I reviewed the CA95 here: My CA95 Review

It doesn't sound muffled or positionally vague on speakers the way most digitals do if you're used to the clarity you get on headphones.



This is well said. I have this exact complaint about Roland HP and Yamaha CL. When I played them, at times I just feel like playing a big booming sound without hearing a clear definition. But switching to headphones make it much clearer.
_________________________
Bosendorfer 185CS, Roland FP-7F, Yamaha PSR530

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#2024142 - 01/30/13 04:11 PM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
chickenlump Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/13/12
Posts: 54
Loc: Canada
Hey Ashley,

I recently bought the CA95, and I am extremely happy with it. (See my review http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthrea...tml#post2019456)

Initially, the Kawai model wasn't even on my potential list, and when I tried it I was won over. I am in an apartment and I figured I could settle for CA65, but after playing the CA95, it does really make a big difference.
The sound is omnidirectional, the vibrations and resonance truly feels very real.

When I play it without headphones, I can forget that I'm playing a DP. As a long term investment, I think it's worth the extra cost.

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#2024456 - 01/31/13 05:52 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2635
@Ashley,

If you already have enough money then it's really a no-brainer to go with the CA95 as you will find that it has just about everything you are looking for in regards to tone, touch, and, realism:

Here are three recordings that demonstrate several different piano sounds:

[Please note there is silence of 15 seconds (or more) before the playing starts in each recording]

1) https://www.box.com/s/t5ltc1uxwiubl27fbdjl

2) https://www.box.com/s/fvu9sin08661g6b5xytc

3) https://www.box.com/s/vcukbz876a4mrmvu1jp3

The quality of the CA95's sounds are top notch as you can add in excellent reverb effects, lengthen the decay time, and, there are many other features to make use of within the "Virtual Technician" settings.

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#2024772 - 01/31/13 05:07 PM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: pv88]
Ashley2013 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/29/13
Posts: 38
pv88, Thank you. It sounds amazing with my headphone. Is that you playing your CA95?

So, once again I went to the dealer today during my lunch just to play with the functions on the CA65. I figure it's the same on both 65 and 95. I read all the detailed reviews you guys pointed me to and wanted to see for myself. The virtual technician is an awesome feature. You really can mold the sound to any individuals liking. Some features seem endlessly packed in that little digital square box on the left ;-). Hey, I’m just looking for nice clear piano sounds, but good to know how much, much more it can do. Can’t wait to get one the CA's in my house!

On totally other note, I also played the Kawai ES7. (Just because it reminded me of my P155 - but night and day compared). VERY attractive and sleek with nice custom stand. The smooth action and powerful sound is stunning for a portable. Huge difference from my p155. Also, call me crazy but it seemed to sound better than the CA65. Maybe because of the speaker placement on top. Anyway just thought I mention it if anyone is looking for an AMAZING portable that also could work nicely as a home piano. If I wasn’t looking for furniture-like piano I would by the ES7 in heartbeat and so much fun to play. Gotta say Kawai really seems to have their act together in the digital market over their competitors. They really figured out how to capture the true pure essence of an acoustic with sound and touch. Yamaha and Roland are great but seem a bit processed compared to the pure natural sound and feel of Kawai (just my opinion). How the heck do they do it, especially in that portable now that I played it for myself.

Well, hopefully Monday I'll finally buy a Kawai CA?? instead of talking about it. Thank you all for great reviews, demos, and advice. SO helpful! Keep them coming to help me from going crazy until Monday


Edited by Ashley2013 (01/31/13 05:10 PM)

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#2024882 - 01/31/13 08:28 PM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2635
Originally Posted By: Ashley2013
pv88, Thank you. It sounds amazing with my headphone. Is that you playing your CA95?

I also played the Kawai ES7. VERY attractive and sleek with nice custom stand. The smooth action and powerful sound is stunning for a portable. Also, call me crazy but it seemed to sound better than the CA65. Maybe because of the speaker placement on top.


Yes, I play all of the pieces in the recordings.

And, as for the ES7 your observation is correct in perceiving the speakers to "sound better" as they are on top. I also have a Kawai EP3 (the older predecessor of the ES7), and, I have to agree on the clarity of the sounds from speakers that are on top of the instrument. However, the ES7/EP3 does not have the strong resonant bass end that the CA95 does, due to the superior soundboard.

Overall, the CA95 is much better than the ES7/EP3, as there is tactile feel in the fingertips due to vibrations (when volume is above half) and these vibrations can even be felt through the sustain pedal, just like on an acoustic.

Also, the GF ("Grand Feel") action is the best one Kawai offers presently, plus if you really want the physical feel and power of a concert grand, the CA95 is still the best choice over the other lower priced models.

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#2025031 - 02/01/13 03:13 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: pv88]
Dustin Spray Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/13
Posts: 51
Loc: Central Illinois
Originally Posted By: pv88
@Ashley,

If you already have enough money then it's really a no-brainer to go with the CA95 as you will find that it has just about everything you are looking for in regards to tone, touch, and, realism:

Here are three recordings that demonstrate several different piano sounds:

[Please note there is silence of 15 seconds (or more) before the playing starts in each recording]

1) https://www.box.com/s/t5ltc1uxwiubl27fbdjl

2) https://www.box.com/s/fvu9sin08661g6b5xytc

3) https://www.box.com/s/vcukbz876a4mrmvu1jp3

The quality of the CA95's sounds are top notch as you can add in excellent reverb effects, lengthen the decay time, and, there are many other features to make use of within the "Virtual Technician" settings.


You wouldnt happen to have sheet music for third song "Remembering You" would you? Or are you playing by ear? It is a really catchy song that I would like to try and learn how to play. Thank you!

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#2025058 - 02/01/13 04:33 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Dustin Spray]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2635
[Edited]

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#2025071 - 02/01/13 05:02 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2635
Originally Posted By: Ashley2013
They really figured out how to capture the true pure essence of an acoustic with sound and touch.


Let me add here that the optimal settings for playing (at the CA95) should be one that you perceive to be close to a concert grand in this way:

1) Volume level:

Should be set just high enough so that you need to play with some effort to achieve "ff" (fortissimo) just like with an acoustic. If you are playing too easily and are still getting a loud sound, then the volume is too high. I generally find the best volume level is somewhere between half and three quarters maximum.

2) Settings:

You can try a number of "Basic" and "Virtual Technician" settings that will either add or subtract from the sound you are wanting to adjust.

However, the most important setting is simply the volume itself as it has to be adjusted until you hear it at a simulated concert grand-like level.

Keep in mind that cranking up the CA95 to maximum is very loud indeed, but that is not realistic. This is also not so good for your ears...

If it sounds too loud then it probably is!

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#2033266 - 02/14/13 07:46 PM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Kos]
mactoe Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/13/13
Posts: 5
Originally Posted By: Kos
Speaking of CA series, is there any hope for CA15? Or has the VPC kinda replaced it?


Kawai CA15(to replace the CA13) coming out shortly. This from Kawai directly. grin


Edited by mactoe (02/14/13 07:51 PM)

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#2033609 - 02/15/13 09:17 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Ashley2013]
McBuster Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/11
Posts: 236
Loc: St Paul Minnesota USA
Ashley

There are subtle differences between the 65/95. More voices being one.

The Major Difference is the sound system. The Keyboards are identical. The Sound Engine too. The 95 has a bit more amplifier wattage and an entirely different speaker system. Of which the soundboard is one component.

The 65 has two Tweeters and two Full Range speakers. The Tweeters are behind cloth just above the left and right side of the keyboard, facing forward. The larger ones below left and right side of the keyboard, facing down. That's it. Think of the larger ones being squeezed in where they can fit.

The 95 is entirely different. First off, the piano is built around a box - the width and height of the piano and about six inches thick. The Tweeters are in the same place. There are four midrange speakers that face down into this box. By your knees, you will feel three openings behind cloth where that sound comes forward. The 93 had four, the 95 left out the fourth one on the far left - I believe the thinking was the low end bass will be produced by the soundboard instead. Then, in the back is the soundboard. As others have said, it kicks in above 1/3rd volume. And, it fills a room with sound just as its cousins, the acoustics.

The box design and the board make alot of difference between them.

With this caveat. If, you will use headphones 90% of the time, and in the foreseeable future, the only difference would be the subtle features the 95 has over the 65. And price. That's it.

I have owned the 63, 93 and now the 95. I did my homework, and for me, between Roland, Yamaha and Kawai, the choice was clear. In the end, it was the real wood structure of the keyboard plus Kawai's investment in continual refinement.
_________________________
Jon ...

Kawai CA95
Sailor, Consultant, Gourmet, Dreamer

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#2036062 - 02/19/13 07:17 PM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: mactoe]
Kawai James Online   content
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 9346
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted By: mactoe
Originally Posted By: Kos
Speaking of CA series, is there any hope for CA15? Or has the VPC kinda replaced it?


Kawai CA15(to replace the CA13) coming out shortly. This from Kawai directly. grin


Indeed, the CA15 was announced by Kawai Japan on Monday.

Main improvements over the CA13:

- RM3 Grand II keyboard action (Ivory Touch, triple sensor, let-off)
- New tone generator (higher resolution reverb and resonance effects etc.)
- 192 note polyphony
- 20W x 2 speaker system
- Grand Feel Pedal System
- Adjustable music rest
- Updated cabinet design

As always, multi-language owner's manual and brochure PDFs are available from Kawai Japan.

Additional English and German language product information is available from the Kawai Europe website.

Kind regards,
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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#2036161 - 02/19/13 11:50 PM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Kawai James]
Miguel Rey Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 340
Any idea on the street cost?
_________________________
Bechstein B c1905


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#2036170 - 02/20/13 12:15 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Miguel Rey]
Kawai James Online   content
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 9346
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted By: Miguel Rey
Any idea on the street cost?


No, I'm afraid not. Pricing is typically decided by the distributor.

However, as with previous generations of this model, the CA15 will unfortunately not be marketed by Kawai America. This is partly due to the popularity of the CE220 model in the US.

Kind regards,
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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#2036177 - 02/20/13 12:47 AM Re: Kawai CA Series [Re: Miguel Rey]
mactoe Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/13/13
Posts: 5
Originally Posted By: Miguel Rey
Any idea on the street cost?


Same as what the RRP of the CA13 was, no?

http://www.kawai.co.jp/ep/guide/manual.html#ca

At least that what it is on the Kawai.jp site and has been conveyed to myself elsewhere...


Edited by mactoe (02/20/13 12:50 AM)

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