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#2379166 - Yesterday at 01:29 PM External monitors vs good built-in cabinet speakers?
JoeThePro Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/14/10
Posts: 287
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Im considering a DP purchase in the near future, but Im torn between going for an upright style piano like the CA95 or HP508, or something more lean like the Nord Piano2 or something similar.

With the stage piano style housing I would need external powered monitors, but it seems like this would not sound very "realistic" as far as having a point source of sound on each side of the keyboard. At least with the console style DPs you get more of an enveloping sound due to the multiple speakers, and now soundboard transducers.

Are there tricks that people use with monitors to get them to produce a more natural experience as far as not sounding like point sources?

Also, all things being equal (using a sampled piano via PC), which setup will sound better: the 2 external monitors or the DP cabinet speakers via Line-In?

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#2379171 - Yesterday at 01:36 PM Re: External monitors vs good built-in cabinet speakers? [Re: JoeThePro]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1972
Loc: Pennsylvania
One would like to think that the speaker system on a high-quality cabinet style DP would give a better sound that some user styled organization of speakers.

Having said that ... it may not be true.

Some will suggest you can do better with quality speakers independent of the piano cabinet.

There are so many factors involved with the final sound you get that it is almost impossible to come to a final conclusion.

Personally, I usually do not like the sound coming from a place other than my piano.

You just have to make a decision and go see for yourself.

Good Luck

P.S. If your primary goal is to learn to play the piano, it doesn't really matter which one you decide on. Just keep practicing.




Edited by dmd (Yesterday at 01:38 PM)
_________________________
Don

Current: ES7, Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 audio device, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focal CMS 40 Powered Monitors, Ravenscroft275, Ivory II American Concert D, Pianoteq 5

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#2379183 - Yesterday at 02:10 PM Re: External monitors vs good built-in cabinet speakers? [Re: JoeThePro]
Beemer Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/26/13
Posts: 293
Loc: Scotland
Joe,

How long is a piece of string?

External speakers can be of any size, wattage, efficiency and frequency response. They can be mounted at any distance to the keyboard and at any desired separation.

My setup has two passive JBL studio monitor Control 5 speakers (has 6" mid range drivers and 1" titanium tweeters), 3 feet distant and five feet apart. In addition I have a JBL Control sb-5 stereo woofer (four 6.5" drivers)

No way could the audio output of this system be described as having point source sound. The speakers are fed by a 100 Watt r.m.s Peavey reference amplifier.

Voices are from my Yamaha Tyros 5 or from Pianoteq 5.

Ian

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#2379213 - Yesterday at 02:51 PM Re: External monitors vs good built-in cabinet speakers? [Re: Beemer]
JoeThePro Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/14/10
Posts: 287
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Originally Posted By: Beemer
Joe,

How long is a piece of string?

External speakers can be of any size, wattage, efficiency and frequency response. They can be mounted at any distance to the keyboard and at any desired separation.

My setup has two passive JBL studio monitor Control 5 speakers (has 6" mid range drivers and 1" titanium tweeters), 3 feet distant and five feet apart. In addition I have a JBL Control sb-5 stereo woofer (four 6.5" drivers)

No way could the audio output of this system be described as having point source sound. The speakers are fed by a 100 Watt r.m.s Peavey reference amplifier.

Voices are from my Yamaha Tyros 5 or from Pianoteq 5.

Ian



Sounds like a nice setup. At what height do you have the pair of speakers?

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#2379215 - Yesterday at 03:00 PM Re: External monitors vs good built-in cabinet speakers? [Re: JoeThePro]
Alexander Borro Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/18/14
Posts: 128
Loc: UK
Joe it depends what type you go for. Your typical smaller 5 inch near field studio monitor is very directional, I know that much having tried several of them and just experienced this owning some and to get the most out of them they need to be at the exact right height, you can't just put them on top of a piano cabinet and expect to get the same level of sound without dropping detail. Some can be a bit more forgiving than others. Fine for the player but not for inviting people to come an listen unless they are right behind you.

Before this I used a pair of vintage speakers when my old amp died I got the monitors, it was an old Hifi which are more like your room type setup that project into the room, rather than near field character of a studio monitor. The old Hifi setup IMHO did a better job at giving that surround feeling and not as sensitive to direction change, however I find the monitors are better when in the exact right spot for clear sound detail.

In fact I am going to pick up an old Hifi amp for the old vintage speakers and resurrect them and set them up behind me, and have the monitors in front, it should give a nice enveloping feeling.

The setup I liked software piano for most of the volume, through external speakers, a litte bit of sound coming out of the console for more surround feeling.

Now when I am finished decorating my room and all is setup. I will have 2x 5 inch monitors 2x75 watts front, 2x old vintage speakers behind, also 2x75 watts but with 8 inch woofers + 2 x 20 Watts out of the console. Enough to annoy the neighbours and be surrounded in sound I hope laugh


Edited by Alexander Borro (Yesterday at 03:08 PM)
_________________________
start June 2014, self teacher.
Books: Barratt classic piano course book 1,2,3. Humphries Piano handbook, various others
Hardware: Casio Celviano AP 450 & various peripherals:
Software: Ivory American D, Pianoteq 5 demo, The Giant, Cubase 6 LE.
My struggles: https://soundcloud.com/alexander-borro

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#2379247 - Yesterday at 04:54 PM Re: External monitors vs good built-in cabinet speakers? [Re: JoeThePro]
PtJaa Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/14/12
Posts: 232
Loc: Czech Republic
Originally Posted By: JoeThePro
Also, all things being equal (using a sampled piano via PC), which setup will sound better: the 2 external monitors or the DP cabinet speakers via Line-In?

External monitors, definitely.
Internal speakers of digital pianos often don't work very well with external sound - things like equalisation can be the problem.
IMHO, half-decent monitors will do much better work. Just try to find ones that aren't too directional.
_________________________
Kawai CA65 :: Galaxy: Vintage D, Vienna Grand, Giant :: Pianoteq 5 :: Kontakt 5 :: Reaper :: True Keys pianos

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#2379465 - Today at 03:38 AM Re: External monitors vs good built-in cabinet speakers? [Re: JoeThePro]
Beemer Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/26/13
Posts: 293
Loc: Scotland
Originally Posted By: JoeThePro
Originally Posted By: Beemer
Joe,

How long is a piece of string?

External speakers can be of any size, wattage, efficiency and frequency response. They can be mounted at any distance to the keyboard and at any desired separation.

My setup has two passive JBL studio monitor Control 5 speakers (has 6" mid range drivers and 1" titanium tweeters), 3 feet distant and five feet apart. In addition I have a JBL Control sb-5 stereo woofer (four 6.5" drivers)

No way could the audio output of this system be described as having point source sound. The speakers are fed by a 100 Watt r.m.s Peavey reference amplifier.

Voices are from my Yamaha Tyros 5 or from Pianoteq 5.

Ian



Sounds like a nice setup. At what height do you have the pair of speakers?

Joe, the Control 5 speakers have their tweeters at ear height. The Control SB-5 sits on the floor at the left side of the keyboard. I also have a 150W Peavey KB300 keyboard amp which has a 15 inch driver and titanium horn tweeter. As its a mono amp I just keep it as a backup.

As an aside, most sound from an upright acoustic piano comes from the back of the piano radiating from the wooden soundboard. It then bounces of the wall (which should be at least 8" away). So position of digital piano speakers (except for Yamaha Avantgrand N3) are not emulating an acoustic anyhow.

Ian

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