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#2052176 - 03/21/13 11:08 PM HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly
warlock214 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 105
Loc: Tennessee
When I play at my piano lessons I'm hitting the keys like I'm playing my home DP. Thus I'm not making the dynamics standout out from natural notes. My PX-150 has the Tri-sensor hammer action. Should I practice with the Sensors turned off or start thinking about purchasing an acoustic piano for home?
_________________________

Casio Privia PX-150
Started Playing: November 2012
Completed Unit 6, Faber's Adult Piano Adventures Book 1

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#2052184 - 03/21/13 11:24 PM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
Mr Super-Hunky Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 4269
Loc: Arizona.
Warlock, before you go out and spend more money, I would suggest two things (unrelated).

1.) When performing [not to be confused with learning the piece to begin with] always play the keys like you are giving a sensual massage. The kind that you can send the energy through your fingers into the other person. If you have the ability to do this and are able to focus your energy into playing very sensually with controlled dynamics and emotion,.. well that's what the good stuff is made out of!

2.) Consider playing your digital using a quality set of headphones. "Quality" does not have to be expensive.
I suggest doing this because the sound reproduction will be dramatically improved and you will be able to hear any and all of the subtle inputs that you do.

I use a $100 pair of Audio Technica ATH-M50 headphones and couldn't be happier. The difference in sound coming from my DP is dramatically improved with the use of the headphones. Possibly even more than dramatically improved. More like double-dramatically improved.

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#2052227 - 03/22/13 01:17 AM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
Sand Tiger Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 1088
Loc: Southern California
I have the same digital piano, the Casio PX-150. To me, it has decent action and allows for a wide range of dynamic control and expression. My beginner suggestion would be to practice more. Ask the teacher for exercises, or pieces that might focus on dynamics. Wouldn't turning the sensors off, mean no dynamics at all? Why would a beginner do that if they are struggling with dynamics?

The teacher's piano is different, so what? It makes no sense to me to duplicate that kind of piano, just so the lesson time can go better. It is an excellent skill to cultivate to be able to play on different pianos, whether they be digital or acoustic.

I know we are mostly beginners on this section, but a person never knows what piano might be at a certain venue. It might be a recital or a hotel lobby, or a cruise ship, or an outdoor street piano, as some on the forum have reported finding and playing, often with enjoyable results for performer and audience. Those pianos are all slightly different.

A new Casio PX-150 is likely towards the upper half in terms of quality, tuning, response, of random pianos a person might come across. You have a good unit. Learn to play it, and also learn what is needed to adapt to other pianos you might find. They are all going to be slightly different, with a few that are very different. The teacher's piano is a known quantity. You get to play on it every week (or how ever often your lessons are). You'll adapt if you keep at it.
_________________________
my piano uploads

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#2052361 - 03/22/13 09:29 AM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
warlock214 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 105
Loc: Tennessee
Thanks Sand Tiger and Mr Super-Hunky. I also found a couple of exercises that may help me with finger pressure. I'll practice these and see what happens.
_________________________

Casio Privia PX-150
Started Playing: November 2012
Completed Unit 6, Faber's Adult Piano Adventures Book 1

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#2052574 - 03/22/13 04:02 PM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
mabraman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/24/12
Posts: 328
Loc: Valencia, Spain
I have the same problem when switching from my DP to the upright. So far, I can't help playing very noisely and getting sticked to the keys. It's a nightmare. As I live near my school, I sometimes go down and play for a while...and I always come back home with the tail between the legs.
Today I've talked about it with a teacher, and her only advice has been "it's all about working your fingers so they know what to do".
Well, they know what to do...on my DP!!
_________________________
Learning piano from scratch since September, 2012.
Kawai ES7.

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#2052611 - 03/22/13 04:56 PM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: mabraman]
warlock214 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 105
Loc: Tennessee
Yep!! We'll just keep practicing Mabraman. Hopefully everything will soon come together!
_________________________

Casio Privia PX-150
Started Playing: November 2012
Completed Unit 6, Faber's Adult Piano Adventures Book 1

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#2052758 - 03/23/13 12:19 AM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
Charles Cohen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1495
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Quote:
Wouldn't turning the sensors off, mean no dynamics at all? Why would a beginner do that if they are struggling with dynamics?


+1.

Is your teacher's piano noticeably "harder" (that is, you have to hit the key harder to get the same tone) than the PX-150? If so, you may have a "Touch" setting on the PX-150. Try setting it off the default value.

It won't change the "feel" of the action, but it will make you hit the keys harder (or less hard) for the same sound.

The PX-150 is _plenty_ "touch-sensitive". Keep at it . . .

. Charles

PS -- on the PX-350, there's an "Off" setting for "Touch". That turns off the touch sensitivity, and plays all sounds at maximum volume whenever you hit a key. You should _not_ practice with that setting.



Edited by Charles Cohen (03/23/13 12:21 AM)

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#2052807 - 03/23/13 04:47 AM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
peterws Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/21/12
Posts: 3804
Loc: Northern England.
It sounds like a long standing fault on most acoustic pianos particularly uprights . . . don`t blame the DP; have a gentle word with your teacher. Put him/her in the right direction . . .!
_________________________
"I'm playing all the right notes � but not necessarily in the right order." Eric Morecambe

""

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#2052810 - 03/23/13 05:02 AM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 2107
Loc: Rocky Mountains
I really like the advise MrSuperHunky gave you.

Your Casio is giving you as much touch as many acoustic pianos. I wouldn't advise to buy a cheap acoustic piano.
If you were to get a good used acoustic. The difference is quite a bit. Personally, I wouldn't buy anything used except an old Kawai KG series. I love Kawai's sound. Maybe a 2 or 3? That would cost around ten thousand. The difference in playability and touch would be great. Will give new meaning to caressing the keys. Will give you the kind of feedback you are probably getting out of your teachers piano.

Otherwise...that PX is not doing bad. There is a good amount of touch to it. If you can't feel the touch in your PX. You are far off in your playing.
I'm not picking on you personally...there is the term...playing like a wounded water buffalo in heat.
_________________________
Ron
Your brain is a sponge. Keep it wet. Mary Gae George
The focus of your personal practice is discipline. Not numbers. Scott Sonnon

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#2052817 - 03/23/13 05:35 AM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
wouter79 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 3605
"hitting" the keys is not the right way to control dynamics, usually it gives a rather harsh, staccato like sound. Sometimes useful but often not. Try putting your finger on the key and then pushing it down. That should give you much better control over the dynamics.

Now you still can do this in different ways. The teacher should be able to explain this ?
_________________________

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#2052818 - 03/23/13 05:38 AM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
wouter79 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 3605
oh, and for your questiion

>Should I practice with the Sensors turned off or start thinking about purchasing an acoustic piano for home?

I would recommend a *good* acoustic piano any day over a digital. WHy don't you visit some dealers to try acoustics to see what you are missing.
_________________________

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#2053013 - 03/23/13 03:42 PM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
As wouter says, the depressing of keys should be effortless, making careful use of the force of gravity and the entire body to produce effortless playing, but a very broad dynamic and tonal range


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#2053038 - 03/23/13 04:42 PM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
findingnemo2010 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/17/09
Posts: 1509
Johann Sebastian Bach says all you have to do is press the keys and they play themselves grin
_________________________
music to me is kind of like putting together pieces of a puzzle
i call it the paino because its where i put all my pain

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#2053189 - 03/23/13 10:00 PM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
Steven Y. A. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/14/13
Posts: 291
Loc: Toronto
I owned a Yamaha p105 for 2 months, I thought the action was excellent . Then I played some acoustic piano I realize I was so wrong.
_________________________
PLEYEL P124

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#2053253 - 03/24/13 01:14 AM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: Charles Cohen]
warlock214 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 105
Loc: Tennessee
Charles - She noticed I'm pressing the keys kinda timid like. All my notes sound the same at times... instead of f and mf.
_________________________

Casio Privia PX-150
Started Playing: November 2012
Completed Unit 6, Faber's Adult Piano Adventures Book 1

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#2053278 - 03/24/13 04:58 AM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
casinitaly Online   blank


Gold Supporter until March 1 2014


Registered: 03/01/10
Posts: 5259
Loc: Italy
Warlock I know what you mean--- my dp wasn't as good as the one you've got and it was super easy to press the keys - I always needed time to adapt to the acoustic at my lesson -and when I played my teacher's grand...mamma mia! It was a disaster!

When I got my acoustic it took me -literally - MONTHS -to get used to really making any sound. I played everything too softly. What got me out of that was trying to play a jazzy piece that just begged to be played with a lot of energy!

It sounds like you could stand to "let loose" and play something where you really have to play with energy. I suggest a simple rag or jazz -there are lots available (Dennis Alexander or Martha Meirs - both have a series for beginners).
_________________________
XVIII-XXXV
Everything's too hard until you make it easy. Follow your teacher's instructions and practice wisely/much, and you'll soon wonder how you ever found it hard ;)-BobPickle
Performance anxiety: make it part of your daily routine and deal with it...Cope! zrtf90

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#2053442 - 03/24/13 12:09 PM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: warlock214]
Charles Cohen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1495
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Originally Posted By: warlock214
Charles - She noticed I'm pressing the keys kinda timid like. All my notes sound the same at times... instead of f and mf.


My guess (just a guess) is that you have your digi piano volume, at home, set rather low. And, by habit, you're trying to match that level with her acoustic piano. So your playing (on her piano) becomes timid.

Here's an idea:

. . . Turn up the volume of your digipiano, so that
. . . it sounds as loud as _her_ piano.

. . . Test it at "f" and "ff" levels -- you won't hurt the
. . . keyboard.

. . . If the neighbors complain, use headphones.

That will accustom you to the fact that a real piano is _loud_. And it clangs, when you hit the keys hard. [This change in tone, fortunately, is simulated on the PX-150.]

Another thing you might try -- if you have any finger exercises -- is to play them "ff" occasionally, as well as "mf". You don't want to do that all the time, but once in a while it's good to play as loud as you can.

. Charles

PS -- Since you have a teacher, she'll be figuring out ways to improve your playing. And probably doing a better job than I can.

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#2053476 - 03/24/13 01:15 PM Re: HELP! Don't think I'm hitting the keys properly [Re: casinitaly]
warlock214 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 105
Loc: Tennessee
I just ordered Dennis Alexander's Especially for Adults and Martha Mier's Jazz, Rags, & Blues! I think these books along with my Faber's will definitely help. Excited!!
_________________________

Casio Privia PX-150
Started Playing: November 2012
Completed Unit 6, Faber's Adult Piano Adventures Book 1

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