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#2332433 - Today at 02:28 AM taking lessons on a very heavy grand. is it time to upgrade?
littlebirdblue Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/12/14
Posts: 62
So, my DD is almost done with the Faber Primer books except for the Gold Star Performance Book. She's been hitting a few ghost notes here and there when playing her recital pieces for her teacher but I thought it was just her.

Today, I took my first lesson on the same grand piano (C7) and the keys were really on the heavy side.

We bought a Casio PX150 a few months ago and I thought we'll be okay with it for awhile but its touch is feather-light compared to our teacher's grand piano. Now that I've spent some time on it, I'm surprised that DD has been doing as well as she'd been doing, given the difference. I had a hard time adjusting.

I was thinking about upgrading to a Roland in a near future but how important is it to match the key weight? I do think it's good to learn to play on different pianos but will our fingers be strong enough to play on the C7 if we keep on practicing on the PX150?

Is this a symptom of GAS or a real concern?

Edited by littlebirdblue (Today at 02:30 AM)

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#2332440 - Today at 03:23 AM Re: taking lessons on a very heavy grand. is it time to upgrade? [Re: littlebirdblue]
enzo.sandrolini Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 275
Loc: Europe - France
I had exactly same problem when I started to take lessons on an upright piano
very heavy, different from a 'classic' DP (whatever is the brand..Roland, Kawai etc, as I have tried many of them)
Finally, I have chosen the Hybrid way (because, in my flat, a real piano was not possible)
First a NU1, then I have trade it for a N2
I am very satisfied, and it helped me a lot a this time.

I would say that if you can afford a real piano, even an upright, go for it (with a silent module installed)

Now, after some years of practive, I can say that I can easily adapt myself to any kind of piano...
but It took time for me to reach this level, as a beginner, it was really difficult.
Music is a lifestyle

#2332473 - Today at 05:52 AM Re: taking lessons on a very heavy grand. is it time to upgrade? [Re: littlebirdblue]
Charles Cohen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1334
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
One thing that _might_ help:

. . . Set the PX-150 "touch" to "heavy".

. Charles

#2332496 - Today at 08:07 AM Re: taking lessons on a very heavy grand. is it time to upgrade? [Re: littlebirdblue]
Pete14 Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 06/12/13
Posts: 237
Rolands tend to have light actions. The new Kawai CA95/65 are also on the lighter side; however, the older CA93/63 use slightly heavier actions (which I prefer).

As Enzo suggested, an upright acoustic, or perhaps even a hybrid (AvantGrand NU1/N1/N2/N3) are good options if money is not an issue. Or you could go the software route: Kawai VPC1 + a software-piano of your choice.

#2332498 - Today at 08:09 AM Re: taking lessons on a very heavy grand. is it time to upgrade? [Re: littlebirdblue]
Morodiene Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11966
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
It is better that DD gets exposed to different touches on a piano, because every piano will feel different and she needs to learn how to adjust. She's very early on in her studies, so it will be a while.

Keep in mind that with a large grand piano like the C7, the action will generally have more weight. The Px series tend toward the lighter side of things. Some people prefer to practice on a heavy instrument so that when they play elsewhere it's a bit easier. The danger is that you may end up playing a lot faster than you're used to and getting out of control. Playing with a lighter action is good for ease of use, but can cause problems like your daughter is experiencing. In the end, there's pros and cons to both.

The best you can do is try to find opportunities for DD to play on different pianos as often as possible. Don't obsess about it, but it can help. Down the road, you will want to upgrade to a good acoustic upright or preferably, a good acoustic grand. If you need a digital, then the silent option is good or go for a Kawai DP with the Grand Feel action (MP11, CA65/95, CS7/10). These have a nice, heavy action that mimics a grand piano very well.

But for now, stick with the PX-150. Wait until she completes the Faber series or gets to early intermediate repertoire before upgrading.
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

#2332535 - 5 minutes 34 seconds ago Re: taking lessons on a very heavy grand. is it time to upgrade? [Re: littlebirdblue]
anotherscott Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 3223
I have a Yamaha C6, and I'd say it has a lighter action than a Casio PX-x50.

Grand pianos themselves vary a lot in how heavy the keys feel.

As for "upgrading" to a Roland, I think their lower end models (i.e. "Ivory Feel-G") feel less like a real piano than the Casio. The Casio seems a little sluggish on the return, but I think the Roland is even more so.

OTOH, I think the higher end Roland ("Ivory Feel-S") is one of the best actions you can get... but it is lighter feeling than the Casio that you already think feels too light!

One thing that makes these comparisons difficult is that I think people key into different aspects of the feel, and the basic mechanisms of a grand and a low cost DP are just fundamentally different. i.e. the difference between the upweight and downweight tends to be greater on an acoustic piano than a digital. So I think, depending on what you are more sensitive too, that could explain why different people could describe the same action as feeling light or heavy.


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