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#2032939 - 02/14/13 10:34 AM Considering trading in DP for something portable, help!
Elkayem Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/12
Posts: 159
Loc: Santa Clara, CA
I have a Yamaha YDP-181 that I love, but now would like something I can take with me. I know nothing about stage pianos so need a place to start. Here are the things that are important to me:
* Should be comparable in price to YDP-181, so if I buy and sell on Craigslist, I won't need to sink more than a few extra hundred dollars. I paid $1600 for my DP several years ago.
* Must have similar feel to a real piano, i.e. fully weighted keys. I will be practicing on it at home when I want to use the headphones and would like something fairly realistic.
* Should have a good acoustic piano sound. I'm not too concerned about the other sounds.
* I don't want to feel I am taking a step down in quality.

Any suggestions on what I should start looking at? I may also consider new if I can't find what I'm looking for but will probably start searching the classifieds first.
_________________________
Schimmel 130T

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#2032982 - 02/14/13 11:26 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Why not pick up the P-155? It has the same keyboard and a newer tone engine but cost significantly less than your YDP-181 did. Pretty lightweight. Also there's the CP33, which is older but is a true stage piano (no speakers). If you are happy with the action and sounds on your Arius, both of these pianos will make you happy as well. You could upgrade to a CP50 if you want something a little better than what you have now.

Or you could branch out into other brands and grab a Kawai EP3 or something.

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#2032983 - 02/14/13 11:28 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
anotherscott Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 3216
The CP33 uses the same kind of keybed (GH) as the YDP-181, and likely uses the same piano sample, as both are described as "3-level AWM Dynamic Stereo" so it will probably be very close to what you're used to, at just under 40 lbs. It has 64 note polyphony vs. 128 in the YDP, but that is unlikely to be an issue in most real-world playing, especially if you're not layering sounds.

The P155 has the same keybed and restores the 128 polyphony, but the piano sound is slightly different. It is actually a newer, improved sample (with 4 levels instead of 3) but, as with all things sound related, people have their subjective preferences, and some people prefer the older CP33 sound. Another big difference is that the P155 has speakers built in, the CP33 does not.

There is also the CP300, which again has the GH keybed, and it has speakers built in, and it has the 128 note polyphony. I think it has the same sound as the CP33, but I'm not entirely sure. I suspect this might be the closest to your Arius, but it begins to stretch the definition of "portable" at a bit over 70 lbs.

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#2033435 - 02/14/13 11:02 PM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
Elkayem Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/12
Posts: 159
Loc: Santa Clara, CA
Thanks guys! I am leaning toward a true stage piano without speakers because at home I will only be playing with headphones (otherwise I would be using my AP) and if I am taking it out to play with others, I'll likely be using an amp. I will check out the P155 though. Can't see the downside to built in speakers apart from weight, but I am open to the wisdom from those with more experience than me.

I am very fond of my YDP-181. The piano sound is nice and the action feels good (though a bit heavier than my AP). I would be happy with this in stage piano form. The thing that makes me nervous about the the CP33 is that it is a bit older (released in 2006 vs mine which was released in 2010). Am I missing anything? Are they the same sounds? Guess I am leaning toward the CP50 since it is newer and (yes I said I was only interested in the piano sound) it has many more sounds to choose from. But is that worth the extra $600? I see another thread here from someone who has no regrets about their CP33, so can't discount it. One feature I do use a lot is the midi record and playback function. Do either of these keyboards do that?

Also, what about other non-Yamaha keyboards? The Roland RD-300NX sells for about the same as the CP50. Worth it? Any others at this price point to consider?

Guess it is time for me to start test driving these keyboards. That's hard if I limit myself t Craigslist. Maybe I'll pay my local guitar center a visit.
_________________________
Schimmel 130T

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#2033450 - 02/14/13 11:29 PM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
Charles Cohen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1314
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
The Casio PX-5S (pure "stage piano", MIDI controllers, no loudspeakers) isn't available yet, but it's announced. It should sell for about the same price as the Yamaha P155.

If you're willing to wait, it might be a possibility.

. Charles

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#2033483 - 02/15/13 01:26 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
Elkayem Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/12
Posts: 159
Loc: Santa Clara, CA
Charles, tell me more... I watched a NAMM video on YouTube and saw this keyboard made some pretty funky sounds. And only 24 lbs. How does the action compare to Yamaha (which, did I mention, I like)? And how is the piano sound? I am willing to wait if good things are on the horizon. And I am not married to Yamaha.
_________________________
Schimmel 130T

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#2033491 - 02/15/13 01:50 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
xorbe Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/12
Posts: 572
Loc: Mt View, CA
Originally Posted By: Elkayem
Charles, tell me more... I watched a NAMM video on YouTube and saw this keyboard made some pretty funky sounds. And only 24 lbs. How does the action compare to Yamaha (which, did I mention, I like)? And how is the piano sound? I am willing to wait if good things are on the horizon. And I am not married to Yamaha.

Go try a PX-150 / PX-350 to get a feel of the new keys and key action (both are at GC in San Jose.) I liked the feel of the textured keys at least. Seems like the running opinion around here is that the action edges out the Yamaha GHS.

The PX-5S piano sound is a bit of an unknown until end users get to play with it. I think the "AiR" engine is fully unlocked on the PX-5S, unlike the 150 / 350. They might have even played with the piano decay, iirc. We shall see soon enough (couple weeks?) Note that it's a stage device, and thus has no internal speakers.


Edited by xorbe (02/15/13 01:52 AM)

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#2033495 - 02/15/13 02:02 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
Elkayem Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/12
Posts: 159
Loc: Santa Clara, CA
Thanks xorbe! I will go out and try the PX150 and PX350. I understand, can't make a choice just reading the forums. My current Yamaha has GH keyboard, a step up from GHS I understand. I have zero complaints with this action. I think CP50 also has GH, but again must try out. And I get no speakers, and prefer it that way.

Anything else worth checking out in the $1K - $2K range? Of course I have no problems saving money if something on the low end of that range fits the bill.
_________________________
Schimmel 130T

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#2033507 - 02/15/13 03:00 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
xorbe Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/12
Posts: 572
Loc: Mt View, CA
Originally Posted By: Elkayem
Anything else worth checking out in the $1K - $2K range?

Oh goodness, I just made a huge spreadsheet for a family member ... internet prices before haggle:

$ 999 P-155, CP33, PX-5S
$1499 MP6
$1599 Korg Krome
$1699 CP50, FP-4F
$1799 RD-300NX
$1999 CP300, FP-7F, ES7

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#2033508 - 02/15/13 03:04 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
Elkayem Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/12
Posts: 159
Loc: Santa Clara, CA
Great list! Looks like I'm going shopping tomorrow. Did you say haggle? Do retailers do this? (Besides car dealers and acoustic piano dealers of course.)
_________________________
Schimmel 130T

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#2033513 - 02/15/13 03:18 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
xorbe Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/12
Posts: 572
Loc: Mt View, CA
You can always try. You're the one with the cash that they so dearly want. :^) It probably varies by item, newness/hotness, brand, and store to store, etc. See the "prices paid" sticky thread at the top of this very forum.

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#2033597 - 02/15/13 08:40 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: xorbe]
anotherscott Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 3216
Originally Posted By: xorbe
I think the "AiR" engine is fully unlocked on the PX-5S, unlike the 150 / 350.

There's nothing "locked" about the lower models per se, which would imply that the advanced features are somehow "in" the design of the lower models but they have been disabled, and also that there is a specific list of AIR functions that represent the maximum functionality of the technology, such that "fully unlocked" can even be defined. At any rate, it's more useful to talk about the actual features, rather than a nebulous idea of how close a design is to being able to do everything its underlying technology may ever be capable of doing.

So to be specific, compared to the 150/350, the PX-850 version of AIR adds 256 note polyphony, sympathetic resonance and lid simulation. The PX-5S has, I believe, all of those enhancements, and then additional AIR-based enhancements to the EPs and clavs, though exactly what that means in this context I don't know!

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#2033608 - 02/15/13 09:11 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
dje31 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/03/10
Posts: 218
You'll likely have a hard time finding a CP33 to demo in the flesh, given its age, or others of a similar vintage. Even the current CPs ( 1 / 5 / 50 ) can be rare to spot in the wild. Lots of places have a "we can order you one" policy, but don't stock them, even e-tailers. And if they do order you one, some shops' policy is that it's yours, like it or not.

That being said, in a major market---such as NYC, LA, or SF---megatailers such as GC might have them in stock, perhaps even on the showroom floor. Worth a phone call, if you're in the area.
_________________________
Yamaha CP33 | Roland XP-30

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#2033676 - 02/15/13 11:31 AM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: xorbe]
galaxy4t Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/28/08
Posts: 853
Loc: Lakewood, CA
I doubt the decay will be any different on the PX-5S than it is on any other PX-X50 Casio. Casio typically uses the same sample across all models. The exception will be the Rhodes sound and the hex layering which no other Privia or Celviano has. You will have more options in editing the sound of the AP sample as well as the other sounds on the PX-5S.


Edited by galaxy4t (02/15/13 11:35 AM)

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#2033713 - 02/15/13 12:45 PM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: galaxy4t]
Possum SP280Krome Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/23/10
Posts: 623
I know you are used to the YDP181 and GH, but will you look at the P105 even though it is GHS?
_________________________
Roland Juno Gi
Casio PX-130
Korg Krome 61
Korg SP280

Rokit KRK 6 monitors
MXL V67G microphone

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#2033828 - 02/15/13 04:40 PM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
Elkayem Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/12
Posts: 159
Loc: Santa Clara, CA
Well, the deed is done! I ended up ordering the Yamaha CP50, which is being shipped to my local San Jose Guitar Center.

dje31, you were correct. By chance, Guitar Center did have a CP33 in stock and on the floor to try, but did not have a CP50 and said I needed to pay in full before getting it shipped. I really liked the CP33. It has the same feel as my YDP-181 and that nice warm grand piano sound. I am hoping I will like the CP50 even more but if not I may just turn around and exchange it for the 33. I intend to try it out there in the store before taking it home with me, since at this point I bought it sight unseen. The unit I'm buying is a "factory restock" which saved me $240. As long as it doesn't turn out to be a beat up floor model when it arrives, I'll keep it and use that cash toward a stand and bench. Also took advantage of the 15% off President's Sale coupon, woo hoo!

I was very intrigued with the Casio PX-5S. I watched just about every YouTube video out there out there, and was fully prepared to wait until April. However, trying out the Casio PX350 (which I figured would be the closest thing) raised my skepticism. I'm fairly particular about my grand piano sound, and while good, I personally though it compared poorly against my current Yamaha Arius piano sound or the CP33. A few of the other sounds like the organ were not pleasing at all. Also thought the artificial wood grain on the keys was a little odd. Maybe the PX-5S will be a game changer, but I wasn't prepared to wait a few months to find out.
_________________________
Schimmel 130T

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#2033833 - 02/15/13 04:49 PM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
dje31 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/03/10
Posts: 218
Congrats, and glad we could all be of some service!
_________________________
Yamaha CP33 | Roland XP-30

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#2033856 - 02/15/13 05:33 PM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
galaxy4t Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/28/08
Posts: 853
Loc: Lakewood, CA
The PX-350 is designed to be a portable piano. The other sounds on it may or may not be to your liking-these things are subjective. The strength of the 350 is it's light weight and nice AP sample. A coumputer or iPad could be used for other sounds. Congradulations and hope you enjoy your cP-50.

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#2033908 - 02/15/13 07:16 PM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
Elkayem Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/12
Posts: 159
Loc: Santa Clara, CA
Thanks! Galaxy4t, I certainly can see the appeal of the lightweight Casio models, and will still be curious to try out the PX5S when it comes out. I appreciate all the help everyone here offered.
_________________________
Schimmel 130T

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#2033921 - 02/15/13 07:40 PM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
gvfarns Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 3483
Loc: Pennsylvania
Congrats! I'll be interested in hearing your thoughts on the CP50 when it arrives. It seems like it doesn't get talked about that much here for whatever reason. I guess so many people opt for the bottom end.

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#2033989 - 02/15/13 10:41 PM Re: Considering trading in DP for something portable, help! [Re: Elkayem]
fizikisto Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 518
Loc: Hernando, MS
Elkayem,
Congratulations on your purchase. The CP50 seems like a great choice. I hope it brings you countless hours of joyful playing. Please do let us know what you think of it when you get it. smile.

Warm Regards,
_________________________
Nord Stage 2 HA88
Roland RD800

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