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#2041961 - 03/02/13 05:26 PM AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital?
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2625
Here is an interesting AvantGrand N2 demo.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q-lw11OVGyQ

It has most of the features found in the N3 and also has the Tactile Response System (TRS) that is not in the N1.

Questions:

1) Has anyone considered getting the N2, or, already owns one?

2) Is this the best digital in its price range?

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#2041989 - 03/02/13 06:34 PM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
Kawai James Online   content
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 9042
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
I'd say the N1 offers a better bang for your buck.

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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#2041994 - 03/02/13 06:41 PM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
Dave Ferris Offline
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Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
.
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#2042028 - 03/02/13 08:56 PM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
PianoWorksATL Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/19/09
Posts: 2702
Loc: Atlanta, GA
I spoke with the people who have sold more Avantgrands than any other company and they feel strongly that the N2 and the TRS is much better than the N1 without. After a good, long conversation, I agree with his opinion.

Per your second question, the only other digitals in the N2's price range are ensemble digital grands with an entirely different purpose. There are a lot of acoustic pianos in the N2's price range that are quite good.
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#2042045 - 03/02/13 09:29 PM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: PianoWorksATL]
Dave Ferris Offline
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Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
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#2042079 - 03/02/13 11:45 PM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
moleskincrusher Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 172
Sorry, but the Avantgrands, at least in the videos I've encountered, including this one, and my one short playing experience, just don't sound very good to me. Not as good as, e.g., the 700NX Studio Grand.

I'm still finding elusive a really gratifying DP or hybrid with great action AND great sound at a reasonable (or ANY) price.

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#2042083 - 03/02/13 11:53 PM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: PianoWorksATL]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2625
Originally Posted By: PianoWorksATL
I spoke with the people who have sold more Avantgrands than any other company and they feel strongly that the N2 and the TRS is much better than the N1 without. After a good, long conversation, I agree with his opinion.


Sam & Dave,

As you say, the advantage goes to the N2 with the TRS (Tactile Response System) as I wouldn't be interested in the N1 that doesn't have it. However, you can turn the TRS off if you do not wish to use the feature. The TRS option should have been included in the N1, so that model is less desirable.

I have already gone over all of the specifications between the three models, i.e., N1, N2, and, N3, as it appears that the N2 is closest to the N3 as for features with the only real difference being the total speaker output:

1) N1 - 175 watts
2) N2 - 380 watts
3) N3 - 500 watts

I was somewhat surprised to see that the N2 is rated even higher than the Roland V-Piano Grand:

V-Grand - 240 watts

The V-Grand only beats out the N1 for speaker output. Looks as if the other two AvantGrands have better specs.

The N2 has an additional 140 watts amplification over the V-Grand.

Also, you get a real grand action in the N2, but not in the V-Grand.

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#2042093 - 03/03/13 12:28 AM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: moleskincrusher]
Dave Ferris Offline
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Registered: 03/12/07
Posts: 1731
Loc: Glendale, Ca.
.
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#2042110 - 03/03/13 01:38 AM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: Dave Ferris]
moleskincrusher Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 172
[quote=Dave Ferris]

Hey moleskin, is this you ? Sounds good man !
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khjRFsxgSl4

********

Thanks, Dave, it's me, I think; you can almost hear my (over-)playing thru the acoustic morass that is the audio on those 6 clips.

Although I'm in near-total retirement I'm working on a vanity cd rethinking Pat Metheny on solo jazz piano (what a great songwriter he is!). When it materializes I'll alert y'all.

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#2042111 - 03/03/13 01:46 AM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: moleskincrusher]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: moleskincrusher
Although I'm in near-total retirement I'm working on a vanity cd rethinking Pat Metheny on solo jazz piano (what a great songwriter he is!). When it materializes I'll alert y'all.


I'll buy one!

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#2042115 - 03/03/13 02:00 AM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: moleskincrusher]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: moleskincrusher
Sorry, but the Avantgrands, at least in the videos I've encountered, including this one, and my one short playing experience, just don't sound very good to me. Not as good as, e.g., the 700NX Studio Grand.

I'm still finding elusive a really gratifying DP or hybrid with great action AND great sound at a reasonable (or ANY) price.


The best solution I have played was a Yamaha C2 Grand with the latest SH silent system installed. Yet, the 700NX Studio Grand still sounds better and allows you to paint with sound more expressively with headphones while costing 25000 euros less. Go figure.

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#2042134 - 03/03/13 03:00 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: theJourney]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2625
Yes, a lot of players seem to prefer the stage pianos for the sounds, or, by adding VST's and other software pianos to the instrument. I suppose that I am more in line with wanting a good piano sound straight from the instrument.

So far, the Kawai CA95 that I have gives the best playing experience with an excellent resonating soundboard and decent vibrations at both the key bed and in the pedals. It would appear that only the AvantGrands, or, Roland V-Piano Grand would surpass the flagship console style models.

One either likes the piano sounds, or, you don't, as that is a determining factor for many players. It is still very unlikely to find all of the best sounds, action, and, features, in just one digital.

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#2042178 - 03/03/13 06:10 AM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
Karnevil Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/17/06
Posts: 159
I have tried both N1 and N2, and obviously I would buy N2 if I had the money. Here in Norway, N2 cost nearly 2x the amount of N1, and as such N1 is a much better value.
Both models have the same identical piano action, the only difference is TRS and a slightly more realistic ivory texture on the white keytops. I do feel a lack of connection with the speaker sound from the N1, hard to describe it, it is a bit boxy. Maybe also here N2 would be an improvement, however giving that much money for a digital is hard to justify for me (as a HQ acoustic easily trumphs any digital on the market IMO). The N2 sounded better than N1 to me in the local store, more dynamic and powerful tone. My N1 did sound better in the piano store vs. at home in my bedroom, so the room itself will affect the speaker sound.

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#2042207 - 03/03/13 07:48 AM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
PianoZac Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 1424
Having owned the AvantGrand N1 for 18 months and recently have played the N2, I would say spend the extra dough and go for the N2. The TRS system does add something and the speaker system is superior as well.

To your questions, from an action point of view, yes the AvantGrands in general are the best DP out there for grand piano substitution as they should be. From a sound point of view, no, they aren't the best IMHO. Even in the very cool demo video you linked, you can hear the shortcomings of the AvantGrand samples. They sound unfortunately very much like a Clavinova that costs thousands less. I do not like Yamaha's sample in the AvantGrand, which became more and more of a complaint the longer I owned my AvantGrand.
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#2042496 - 03/03/13 06:48 PM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: PianoZac]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2625
Originally Posted By: PianoZac
Even in the very cool demo video you linked, you can hear the shortcomings of the AvantGrand samples. They sound unfortunately very much like a Clavinova that costs thousands less. I do not like Yamaha's sample in the AvantGrand, which became more and more of a complaint the longer I owned my AvantGrand.


Thanks for your feedback as I now know that there have been a few AvantGrand customers that haven't kept them due to the fact that they were not happy with the sound, although surely the piano samples aren't all that bad?

Question:

Has anyone tried connecting other sounds (such as VST's, or, software pianos) to the N2 or N3, and, if so, were you happy with the results?

As you would retain the real grand piano action.

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#2042516 - 03/03/13 07:31 PM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
Amaruk Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/02/11
Posts: 802
Loc: New England, USA
Originally Posted By: pv88

Question:

Has anyone tried connecting other sounds (such as VST's, or, software pianos) to the N2 or N3, and, if so, were you happy with the results?

As you would retain the excellent grand piano action.


Did you consider the all new Kawai VPC1? A fantastic action at a fraction of the cost of N2 or N3? But the AGs have nice speaker systems built in which is one advantage of going with an AG.

I too like the action in the AG series but the sound does not cut it for me. That is why I got the LX-15 as I prefer the Roland SN sound.
_________________________
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#2042534 - 03/03/13 08:10 PM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
36251 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/12/10
Posts: 737
If Yamaha is to be trusted then you must add in the mix of the N series is that the samples were recorded at four different areas of the piano and the advanced speaker system suppose to recreate that ambiance. This must be considered when comparing other models. If I could have the same setup using a Steinway and full samples, I'd certainly would of bought that model but no other co. has come to the party so one has to decide how much they can compromise. If I was a creative director of a concert hall I'd probably would of picked a different instrument but since my concert hall is an elaborate 15'x19'; 325 sq.ft. per floor home built in 1800, I believe I have the best instrument I can own.

I never considered the N1, although I did try it at the time of my purchase. I didn't like the depth of the cabinet. I think the N2 is much more stylish, not to mention its DNA from the N3 is closer.

I've never questioned my decision to give up having an acoustic and I never wanted my home instrument to be a "portable" DP. Is it perfect? No. It is close enough for now. Maybe the next version will be a sample/modeling/real action hybrid that uses some new speaker/amplification invention. In this respect, Yamaha might have the right idea not to update the N series too soon. Let technology have some time to reinvent itself.
_________________________
AG N2, CP4, GK MK & MP

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#2043043 - 03/04/13 09:18 PM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: 36251]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2625
Originally Posted By: 36251
I never considered the N1, although I did try it at the time of my purchase. I didn't like the depth of the cabinet. I think the N2 is much more stylish, not to mention its DNA from the N3 is closer.

Is it perfect? No. It is close enough for now. Maybe the next version will be a sample/modeling/real action hybrid that uses some new speaker/amplification invention. In this respect, Yamaha might have the right idea not to update the N series too soon. Let technology have some time to reinvent itself.


I do agree that the N2 is probably a better choice than the N1 since it has the TRS (Tactile Response System) and is closer to the N3 with its specs.

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#2043649 - 03/05/13 11:17 PM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
Kawai James Online   content
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 9042
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
pv88, please have a little more patience - it's not necessary to continuously delete and rewrite your post just to keep it at the top of the forum.

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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#2043667 - 03/06/13 12:09 AM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
At the end of the day, the samples in the Avantgrand are rather ho-hum, static sounding samples.
That makes the point of choosing an N1 vs N2 vs N3 somewhat moot.

IMHO there has never been a better time to wait and not to buy than now.
If you must buy something now, you are better off getting a Kawai VPC-1 and your favorite software piano (pianoteq is great for the purpose of practicing) and putting the thousands and thousands of dollars that you save into your "future real piano account."

If you insist on a quasi furniture model, then do yourself the favor to also look at Roland's offering.

Regarding the TRS jiggling device, it reminds me of the old Motel 6 beds where, after a whole day's driving on Route 66 you could put a quarter into the slot and get vibrated some more while finishing your Jack Daniels watching The Tonight Show and trying to fall asleep. Kind of a tacky gimmick. We don't play piano to get buzzed by a transducer but to produce sounds that create an emotional response in the listener.

The Avantgrand could bring " good vibrations " if it would have a better approach to dynamic, realistic sound production closer to how a piano sounds when you actually play it.

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#2043726 - 03/06/13 02:24 AM Re: AvantGrand N2 - Best digital? [Re: theJourney]
pv88 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/31/10
Posts: 2625
Originally Posted By: theJourney
At the end of the day, the samples in the Avantgrand are rather ho-hum, static sounding samples. That makes the point of choosing an N1 vs N2 vs N3 somewhat moot.


Yes, as I have to agree with you after listening to this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UKktyeuIs1U

The N3 sounds are far too boxed in, canned, and, appear to have no life or ambience to them, whatsoever. It is rather appalling to hear this much quality lacking in the samples. I am also surprised that Yamaha released this considering that Cyprien Katsaris is a fine pianist, and, the recording does him no justice as for the shallow depth of the piano sounds. What were they thinking?

I can see why a lot of folks do not like the AvantGrands.

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#2043750 - 03/06/13 03:49 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5276
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
Originally Posted By: pv88
Originally Posted By: 36251
I never considered the N1, although I did try it at the time of my purchase. I didn't like the depth of the cabinet. I think the N2 is much more stylish, not to mention its DNA from the N3 is closer.

Is it perfect? No. It is close enough for now. Maybe the next version will be a sample/modeling/real action hybrid that uses some new speaker/amplification invention. In this respect, Yamaha might have the right idea not to update the N series too soon. Let technology have some time to reinvent itself.


I do agree that the N2 is probably a better choice than the N1 since it has the TRS (Tactile Response System) and is closer to the N3 with its specs.


I own the N3 and practice mostly with headphones. The TRS is a nice touch but it's, for me at least, unnecessary icing on the cake. I don't turn it on when using headphones ... and I don't miss it.

Don't compare specs between pianos, simply play the pianos and make your decision that way. We get too wrapped up into the spec sheet.

The N1 represents the best package for the money and if I had to do this all over I might have bought two N1s instead of one N3.
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mp3\wav files

AvantGrand N3, CP5

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#2043752 - 03/06/13 03:56 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5276
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
I guess I must have pretty low standards in sound since I don't get tired of playing my N3 through headphones.
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website

mp3\wav files

AvantGrand N3, CP5

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#2043753 - 03/06/13 04:00 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: pv88]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
It would be interesting to hear your reactions Dave to playing a Roland RD700NX for an hour, then your N3 for an hour, then back again....

Comparisons are easy to win when you aren't comparing.

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#2043768 - 03/06/13 05:23 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: theJourney]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5276
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
Originally Posted By: theJourney
It would be interesting to hear your reactions Dave to playing a Roland RD700NX for an hour, then your N3 for an hour, then back again....

Comparisons are easy to win when you aren't comparing.


For me, the action comes first with the sound a close second. If I thoroughly enjoyed the action of the Roland the sound wouldn't be that much of an issue.

I've used the P250 and the CP300 on jobs and while they sounded great to the audience I was always slightly irritated by the sound. When someone else played the pianos and I listened, they sounded just fine.

There's a connection between the sound, the action, and what the player expects to hear ... and I don't have that lack of connection with the N3.
_________________________
website

mp3\wav files

AvantGrand N3, CP5

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#2043785 - 03/06/13 06:47 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: Dave Horne]
36251 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/12/10
Posts: 737
I love reading and responding to these trite arguments by people who, for the most part don't own the instrument they're bashing. Yamaha has filled a void in the marketplace but probably would rather the consumer to purchase one of their acoustic pianos if space, money, desire was greater.

As for me and other happy owners of an AG, it's our little secret that these pianos are very gratifying and are helping us obtain a level of aesthetic pleasure and technical proficiency that is unmatched in the marketplace.

The other crowd that thinks the same way about their V, or other DP, I'm happy for you. It's just I could never find the action, lack of amplification or Feng shui, a replacement for my upright acoustic. The new Kawai controller with the Vintage D might of worked but it wasn't available at the time.

As always, I'll appreciate the next person who starts this discussion in another new thread after this one wains.

Good day.
_________________________
AG N2, CP4, GK MK & MP

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#2043788 - 03/06/13 07:08 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: 36251]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: 36251
I love reading and responding to these trite arguments by people who, for the most part don't own the instrument they're bashing....As for me and other happy owners of an AG, it's our little secret that these pianos are very gratifying and are helping us obtain a level of aesthetic pleasure and technical proficiency that is unmatched in the marketplace.


Not choosing to buy any given instrument for objective and/or subjective personal reasons -- and then stating those reasons -- is not bashing, it is communicating and sharing.

Better to have not bought an instrument that one is personally not convinced about, then to have bought e.g an Avantgrand and subsequently either feel compelled to praise it in a sheepishly insincere manner or winding up having to sell it at a loss to replace it with something more suitable.

Everyone is different. Thankfully we all have at least a little choice.

However, just because everyone doesn't do as you do, does not make Avantgrand owners into some kind of spiritually superior, gnostic, consumer congnescenti positioned at the summit of the holy marketplace. For example, many would argue that a stereo-speaker-sporting Avantgrand N3 can't hold a candle to the possibilities of a Yamaha C3XSH Silent Grand Piano with its real hammers, soundboard, strings and more advanced CFX sampling. But, if one's funds are limited, than an Avantgrand might be a settle-for alternative...

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#2043824 - 03/06/13 08:36 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: theJourney]
36251 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/12/10
Posts: 737
Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: 36251
I love reading and responding to these trite arguments by people who, for the most part don't own the instrument they're bashing....As for me and other happy owners of an AG, it's our little secret that these pianos are very gratifying and are helping us obtain a level of aesthetic pleasure and technical proficiency that is unmatched in the marketplace.


Not choosing to buy any given instrument for objective and/or subjective personal reasons -- and then stating those reasons -- is not bashing, it is communicating and sharing.

Better to have not bought an instrument that one is personally not convinced about, then to have bought e.g an Avantgrand and subsequently either feel compelled to praise it in a sheepishly insincere manner or winding up having to sell it at a loss to replace it with something more suitable.

Everyone is different. Thankfully we all have at least a little choice.

However, just because everyone doesn't do as you do, does not make Avantgrand owners into some kind of spiritually superior, gnostic, consumer congnescenti positioned at the summit of the holy marketplace. For example, many would argue that a stereo-speaker-sporting Avantgrand N3 can't hold a candle to the possibilities of a Yamaha C3XSH Silent Grand Piano with its real hammers, soundboard, strings and more advanced CFX sampling. But, if one's funds are limited, than an Avantgrand might be a settle-for alternative...
I sometimes pick a word, in this case "bashing." Probably stronger but I seem to be good a picking the wrong word.

If you've read my posts, I can't fit a grand piano in my small space, so you might be right around silent grand but it's a mute point and part of the allure of the AG series.

As far as my comment about AG owners and our secret. That I stand by. It's an amazing instrument to practice on and personally wish I had such an instrument many, many moons ago when I starting playing. Of course, I would also need some of the great teachers I also only found later in life. smile I also feel this issue can't be debated with someone who doesn't own one and plays it everyday.
_________________________
AG N2, CP4, GK MK & MP

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#2043885 - 03/06/13 11:34 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: 36251]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: 36251
If you've read my posts, I can't fit a grand piano in my small space, so you might be right around silent grand but it's a mute point and part of the allure of the AG series.


I think you mean a moot point. To be a mute point the volume control on your tiny but alluring Avantgrand would have to be turned back to zero. smile

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#2043898 - 03/06/13 11:57 AM Re: AvantGrand N2, or, N3 - Best digital? [Re: theJourney]
36251 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/12/10
Posts: 737
Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: 36251
If you've read my posts, I can't fit a grand piano in my small space, so you might be right around silent grand but it's a mute point and part of the allure of the AG series.


I think you mean a moot point. To be a mute point the volume control on your tiny but alluring Avantgrand would have to be turned back to zero. smile
Most of my comments are moot points smile
_________________________
AG N2, CP4, GK MK & MP

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Kawai ES100 vs Kawai MP7
by gbitw
42 minutes 52 seconds ago
Better Practice, Hands Together or Separate etc.
by Sionos
Today at 08:04 AM
Timing of the trill Invention no 1
by DreamOfSleeping
Today at 03:55 AM
Consolation 3 played by Paul Barton question
by briandang
Today at 01:37 AM
Toccata Boogie -- piano solo
by Axtremus
Today at 01:11 AM
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