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#1367335 - 02/06/10 05:24 PM Yamaha P155//Korg SP250//Kawai ES6//Yamaha CP50 or ?
FjJeffrey Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/04/10
Posts: 20
Loc: Edmonton, Canada
I posted once here the day before yesterday. And I appreciate those people helping me! I almost decided going for P155 as its portability and GHE keys. Since there are no one in stock in my city. I have to wait another one or two weeks.

Then I came across Korg SP250 on internet today. It seems it has great keys as well, also portability. And it is much cheaper than P155.

I am a beginner. The main concern for me is in this order: the keys>the sound>portability. Of course, I have a budget cap 1500 Canadian dollars.

So, which one is better for me?
Also, is there anyone who have tried both of them? I would like to know how different the keys of the two feel. Which one is better? Slightly or dramatically?
How different are the sounds of them? Which is better?

Do you guys have any other recommendations that meet my requirements for me?

Thank you very much!

PS: Two other models I am interested in: Kawai ES6 and Yamaha CP50..
Any opinions?



Edited by FjJeffrey (02/06/10 08:34 PM)
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#1367358 - 02/06/10 05:51 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: FjJeffrey]
FjJeffrey Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/04/10
Posts: 20
Loc: Edmonton, Canada
Here is the description about the keys of Korg SP250 form its website:

"The SP-250 is the first portable digital stage piano from Korg to feature the all new RH3 real weighted hammer action. This state-of-the-art key mechanism features differing key weights in each register of the keyboard, delivering the same playing experience as a grand piano. The keyboard is exceptionally responsive, even when playing quickly repeated figures, to preserve every expressive nuance of the performer. The Key Touch Control provides three selectable touch curves, delivering the perfect touch sensitivity for every playing style or type of song."

I am wondering regarding the so-called RH3 real weighed hammer action, is it equivalent to the graded hammer effect for Yamaha P155? Or even superior?


Edited by FjJeffrey (02/06/10 05:52 PM)
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#1367370 - 02/06/10 06:05 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: FjJeffrey]
dewster Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 4264
Loc: Northern NJ
The SP-250 is interesting, with the reportedly decent keys and integrated stand. After trying it in a noisy Sam Ash we recommended it to one of my wife's student's parents, and they actually bought it (which was a surprise). The harpsichord sample is very stretched, and I would need a DPBSD MP3 to evaluate the piano in there. The student complains about quick decay of the piano.

At this point I'd recommend the Yamaha CP50 which releases in May or thereabouts, though no one has examined the output closely as of yet.
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#1367376 - 02/06/10 06:08 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: FjJeffrey]
kstrong Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/09
Posts: 33
I tried both, and opted for the Korg. The sounds are nominally equal, but the Korg's keys felt a better to me. (I ultimately went with the LP-350, the not-so-portable big brother to the SP-250--identical electronics and action, just a different case.) The Korg was a bit "heavier" than the Yamaha, and felt more like the acoustics in the same showroom.

Truth is, there's so much variation between pianos anyway that it's really hard to say "this one does and that one doesn't" when comparing any graded-hammer action to a real piano. You'll probably be able to find at least one acoustic that feels like either of the two. The piano I grew up playing had a very light action compared to my current upright.

Personally, I really think you can go by features on this decision--both boards will defintely be up to the task in the sound/feel/portability department. The Korg's got more voices, while the Yamaha has the ability to record what you're playing, which may be beneficial when learning, I don't know. It wasn't an option when I was taking lessons 30+ years ago.

Later,

K

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#1367465 - 02/06/10 08:26 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: dewster]
FjJeffrey Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/04/10
Posts: 20
Loc: Edmonton, Canada
Hi Dewster. thanks for reply! You seems quite objective on the SP250. Yes, you are probably right. I think I am gonna wait until yamaha releases its CP50. I actually quite like the sound of grand piano 1 on youtube for CP33. So I guess CP50 should have a more authentic sound than CP33. Hopefully, the price would below 1500 CAD.

By the way, I also checked the Kawai ES6 on website, which was recommended by KAWAI James in a thread of this forum. I really love the sound and the music played by this cool guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bz-TpdwuVMY
I hope I can play like him one day. Do you have any idea about this model? I am quite interested in it. It is much more expensive, but it might be a good investment in the long run.
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#1367467 - 02/06/10 08:28 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: kstrong]
FjJeffrey Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/04/10
Posts: 20
Loc: Edmonton, Canada
thanks for you opinion kstrong.
I checked another model on website: Kawai ES6.
Do you have any idea about it?
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#1367487 - 02/06/10 08:51 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: FjJeffrey]
zenof Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/23/07
Posts: 8
Most importantly, the Korg SP250 sounds horrible (i use almost exclusively the piano sounds, i don't care for the rest, but i assure they sound rather horrible too). Some pretty low quality 1-layer samples right there.
I've had it for more than two years.
You have no control of how low keys sound and very little control of expression.
I bought it mainly because it was a lot cheaper than yamaha's counterpart(i think it was P140 back then).

Action however feels the same on most of the DPs i've played so far. Some are lighter, some are heavier, but they feel the same as far as the action goes.

If i were you, i'd go for P155 or a real piano.



Edited by zenof (02/06/10 08:55 PM)

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#1367541 - 02/06/10 09:57 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: zenof]
kstrong Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/09
Posts: 33
I'd disagree with Zenof's opinion of the Korg's sound. I find it quite expressive, and played both it and the P-155 through the same headphones. They were very comparable. I find the "bright" piano sound to be the most pleasing to my ears on the Korg. (I agree with Dewster about the harpsichord. Fortunately, I don't foresee using it much.)

The Yamaha has 4 sampling layers, while the Korg has 2. For the benefit of the newbies stumbling on this post later, a sampling layer is essentially a sample of how hard a key is pressed. For example, for each key, the Korg has two samples; soft and hard. The Yamaha has soft, a little harder, harder still, and hardest. I knew this going into test-driving them, and could not hear any kind of difference between the two in my playing. Now, I'm not an audiophile, and didn't put each one up to a wave monitor to carefully examine each one, nor do I spend a large amount of time playing $20K concert grands. (I'm taking applications for benevolent patron, should someone here care to see to it that I do.) My usual stomping grounds are uprights in peoples' living rooms in various states of tuning and upkeep. "Expressiveness" and "hasn't been tuned in 50 years" are strange bedfellows. Heck, I haven't even tuned my upright since my daughter was born 4 years ago. (Hence why I bought the DP, so I could actually play when the kids are sleeping.)

The best thing to do is go and listen/play for yourself, then make your decision based on your gut. If you can, test them in a showroom with a fair number of acoustics, so you can compare how they feel and sound. If you're having trouble, have the salesperson play for you on each, and listen for any perceptable differences. You needn't be experienced to know what sounds "right" to your ears.

Good luck.

Later,

K


Edited by kstrong (02/06/10 09:59 PM)

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#1367546 - 02/06/10 10:05 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: kstrong]
FjJeffrey Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/04/10
Posts: 20
Loc: Edmonton, Canada
Originally Posted By: kstrong

The best thing to do is go and listen/play for yourself, then make your decision based on your gut. If you can, test them in a showroom with a fair number of acoustics, so you can compare how they feel and sound. If you're having trouble, have the salesperson play for you on each, and listen for any perceptable differences. You needn't be experienced to know what sounds "right" to your ears.


This absolutely makes sense. Thanks a lot for your advice. I will check more stores with my Sennheiser headphones to feel the keys beneath my fingers and the sound in my ears. Although I can't play, I will try all the models I am interested in. Hopefully they have all the models I will try..


Edited by FjJeffrey (02/06/10 10:06 PM)
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#1367555 - 02/06/10 10:15 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: zenof]
snazzyplayer Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/26/09
Posts: 983
Loc: Earth
Originally Posted By: zenof
Most importantly, the Korg SP250 sounds horrible You have no control of how low keys sound and very little control of expression.

If i were you, i'd go for P155 or a real piano.



I agree about the Korg SP250...not a lot of joy to play...my single sample layer P-85 has a more expressive piano.

I'd go for the P-155, or the new CP-50.

The Korg action, I'm told, is made by Fatar...I didn't like it at all, but I haven't liked it in other keyboards either.

Best to actually try these instruments out, if possible.

Snazzy
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#1368135 - 02/07/10 07:19 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: kstrong]
zenof Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/23/07
Posts: 8
The korg's sound is shallow with a rather obvious "electric" taste. How can you call it "quite expressive" when you have only two samples "soft" and "hard"?

I'vent played the yamaha P-120 much, but the samples IIRC were noticably better.

And i'm not really comparing the korg to other DPs. I'm just stating that it sounds rather horrible and was(and is) quite disappointing. And even if SP250 may be one of the better choices in its price range, it's still sounds way to bad to be even considered as an option.

And you cant quite compare it to any tuned upright.
You should definitely tune your piano, chances are, you're gonna love it.


Edited by zenof (02/07/10 07:20 PM)

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#1368410 - 02/08/10 04:44 AM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: zenof]
kstrong Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/09
Posts: 33
Originally Posted By: zenof
How can you call it "quite expressive" when you have only two samples "soft" and "hard"?


With all due respect, I chalk it up to experience and technique. You've got two samples, but an almost infinite variation in volume relative to how hard you hit the keys. I've got the touch response set to its highest setting, so I have the widest range when it comes to how hard I strike the keys. Ideally, I'd like an "extra hard" setting, but oh well.

I've been playing for 34 years on a variety of pianos. No two are alike. When you play a piano for a bit, your fingers develop a "feel" for how the action plays, and you adapt. It's not all about "sampling layers" or other technical stats. The skill of the pianist has as much to do with how an instrument performs.

I played a number of Yamahas--from their lowly Sam's Club YDG-level board up to some top end "well out of my price range" Clavinovas just to get an ear for what DPs were capable of doing. No, the Korg didn't match the top-end Clavinovas, but I'd not expect it to. It did do every bit as well as the P-series and similar price-range boards I played.

Quote:
I'm just stating that it sounds rather horrible and was(and is) quite disappointing.

I'm not challenging your personal appraisal of its sound, rather just adding a differing personal appraisal. Neither appraisal can be construed as fact.

Quote:
You should definitely tune your piano, chances are, you're gonna love it.

Oh, don't get me wrong--I definitely prefer an acoustic to a digital. I don't care how good the sampling or how many layers, it's still an electronic approximation of what "really" is a mechanical process, and there are subtle nuances that can never be matched digitally. But in terms of the overall experience of playing, the Korg does what it needs to for me.

Later,

K

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#1368465 - 02/08/10 08:21 AM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: kstrong]
daviel Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/14/07
Posts: 933
Loc: Waxahachie, Texas
I agree. All this 'spec talk' is just internet discussion. Heck we have to talk about something. You need a board to learn on. Just get what you can afford that feels good to you and sounds right to you. If you have a teacher (strongly recommended) ask for some advice. In the end, get what feels best to you. Good luck
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"She loves to limbo, that much is clear. She's got the right dynamic for the New Frontier"
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David Loving, Waxahachie, Texas

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#1368632 - 02/08/10 12:50 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: daviel]
Coldsalmon Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/07/09
Posts: 41
I own the SP-250 and find the action and piano sound to be quite good. The timbre of the piano changes expressively between pp and ff. However, in my opinion the non-piano sounds on the SP250 are all awful, especially the harpsichord. The action is much better than on my Yamaha KX8 (which uses Yamaha GHS action, like the P85). Obviously it is not close to an acoustic grand in either sound or feel, but even the best digital pianos are pathetically far away from a good grand.

One big issue that nobody seems to mention is the acoustic pianos from which the samples were taken. Yamaha DPs are sampled from Yamaha pianos, and if you don't like Yamaha pianos (like me), you're not going to like Yamaha DPs, no matter how well they are sampled. The Korg is sampled from a piano that is closer to what I like to hear, so I prefer that sound. I couldn't find any sources stating how many sample layers the Korg has. Does anyone know where to get reliable information on this?

Also keep in mind that the speakers on the DP, and not just the samples, are a big factor in the sound you hear. The Korg sounds much better through headphones or external speakers than it does through its internal speakers. I would imagine that this is true for all of the DPs in this price range. If you want to see for yourself, listen to the Purgatory Creek demo of the SP-250. Also, try bringing your good headphones to the music store to compare different DPs. Hearing them through the same speakers will bring out the differences in the samples. Of course, if you're not going to be using external speakers or headphones, then the internal speaker sound is all that matters. But internal speakers are all low quality on budget DPs.

I'm a beginner-intermediate (working on a Chopin Prelude now), and the SP-250 will suit my needs for a long time to come. If I ever become really good at the piano, I'll buy an acoustic grand. None of the DPs you mention are awful, and they will all be the best DP for somebody. Ultimately, this thread ends where all other threads in this forum end: personal preference.

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#2034364 - 02/16/13 05:13 PM Re: Yamaha P155 or Korg SP250 or Else? [Re: FjJeffrey]
JcKeys Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/06/12
Posts: 17
.


Edited by Ken Knapp (02/16/13 06:08 PM)
Edit Reason: repeated and repeated post deleted.
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