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#2403427 - 03/28/15 05:34 AM New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems
Brometeo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/11
Posts: 82
Loc: Madrid (Spain)
I have now a Kawai CA97 smile

After some playing I suspect that need more adaptation time. New SK piano sound seems better overall than previous EX samples, with a great balance and less "screaming". Touch... I hope that I'll get it with some time. It is more responsive, but I might adapt to the new feel.

For now I have found some problems. Some of them are very annoying:

* Last treble notes from Shigeru SK have very high volume. I hear the evident change of volume from D#6 / E-6. It is very difficult getting pp with those notes. EX sample seems more balanced in that respect. The difference is very surprising.

* If you play C-0 + C-1, press damper pedal without releasing notes and then release notes, sound doesn't dissolve naturaly. It is hear for ever, until yo release damper pedal.

* High volume values gives an uncontrolled sound, more evidently than CA95. My volume is now at middle, because higher value sounds "muddy".

* I have a little problem with two keys (click sound when pressed). I'll contact my dealer for a happy and early solution with that smile

And that is all for now. It seems good enough piano, but that is not a surprise, being an owner of Kawai CA95 until last two weeks.

I hope that my fingers greets the new touch in next months.

Greets.
_________________________
Kawai CA97

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#2403434 - 03/28/15 06:03 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
lophiomys Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/01/14
Posts: 282
Loc: Austria, EU
Thank you for that info. Please keep us posted.

Any chance you could make a real world recording of the new SK samples?
I'd mean, simple chords and scales, not using the internal USB recording, but using one of (mobile phone, mics, line out, headphones out).

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#2403459 - 03/28/15 07:50 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12572
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
I suspect you will need to do some tweaking in the Virtual Technician section to get the effects that you desire. What is your damper resonance set at? I think that set to a lower amount will resolve your issue with the lower notes continuing on for too long. I felt the same way on my MP11 and changed the DR to 3. That was much more realistic, IMO.

For the high notes, those of course are undampered on an acoustic and tend to ring out more as a result. However, if you find these are just too ringy, perhaps you can change your Touch setting? I'm not sure what it's on, but play around with that setting. If that doesn't help, play around with the EQ in those frequencies. You can also try changing the Brilliance of the sound, and also the Voicing (I have mine set to Dynamic).

The clicky thing is important to have addressed, but the above two things are solvable with using the many features available to make your piano sound as you prefer. The Virtual Technician is a great asset to have on an instrument and I love the variety you can get from the same instrument.

The action is great, and so if you are used to playing a different DP, it will take a few weeks to get used to it, but really stick through that period. When you are ready, I'd love to see pictures and hear a recording! smile
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#2403609 - 03/28/15 02:30 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: lophiomys]
Brometeo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/11
Posts: 82
Loc: Madrid (Spain)
Originally Posted By lophiomys

Any chance you could make a real world recording of the new SK samples?
I'd mean, simple chords and scales, not using the internal USB recording, but using one of (mobile phone, mics, line out, headphones out).


I'm afraid my life is very busy now for that. What do you want it for?
_________________________
Kawai CA97

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#2403621 - 03/28/15 02:48 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Morodiene]
Brometeo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/11
Posts: 82
Loc: Madrid (Spain)
Originally Posted By Morodiene
I suspect you will need to do some tweaking in the Virtual Technician section to get the effects that you desire. What is your damper resonance set at? I think that set to a lower amount will resolve your issue with the lower notes continuing on for too long. I felt the same way on my MP11 and changed the DR to 3. That was much more realistic, IMO.


When I say "for ever" I mean "for ever" smile

I think it is a bug with Shigeru SK samples. With other sounds it works fine.

Quote:

For the high notes, those of course are undampered on an acoustic and tend to ring out more as a result. However, if you find these are just too ringy, perhaps you can change your Touch setting?


Perhaps... For now I only show my surprise about a bit "lazy" global piano adjustment. Those details convert a "Whow" experience in a mere "So so...".

Quote:

The action is great, and so if you are used to playing a different DP, it will take a few weeks to get used to it, but really stick through that period. When you are ready, I'd love to see pictures and hear a recording! smile


Without controling the action yet, I see tha gain from CA95. It is easier yo be precise when playing soft passages.

On the other hand, new sampled sounds seem a little overprocessed and muddy compared to EX classical Kawai sample. Low frequencies, for example, are more bombast, losing detail and richness from EX. Middle frequencies gain from EX and overall balance is better, but my impression at the moment can't be other than "So, so"...

Not a bad piano at all. Perhaps I waited for more "love" in details.
_________________________
Kawai CA97

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#2403635 - 03/28/15 03:15 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
lophiomys Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/01/14
Posts: 282
Loc: Austria, EU
Quote:
What do you want it for?

Just to get a general idea of the real world sound of the new SK samples. I will not make it to a musik store with a CA67 for another few weeks.

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#2403654 - 03/28/15 03:53 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12572
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By Brometeo


Not a bad piano at all. Perhaps I waited for more "love" in details.


Then get into that Virtual Technician and give it some love smile.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#2403917 - 03/29/15 09:37 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: lophiomys]
ColoRodney Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/07/14
Posts: 65
Originally Posted By lophiomys
Thank you for that info. Please keep us posted.

Any chance you could make a real world recording of the new SK samples?
I'd mean, simple chords and scales, not using the internal USB recording, but using one of (mobile phone, mics, line out, headphones out).




Why not the internal USB? Not only is it a heck of a lot easier to do, it would be much more accurate than recording with a mobile phone.

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#2403926 - 03/29/15 10:17 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
McBuster Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/11
Posts: 335
Loc: St Paul Minnesota USA
The USB Recorder is the most accurate way of capturing what the Sound Engine produces. However, what we hear comes from the Speakers. And the Amplifiers will produce a different sound thru the Speakers.
_________________________
Jon ...

Kawai CA95
Sailor, Consultant, Gourmet, Dreamer

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#2403943 - 03/29/15 11:18 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
jtsn Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/19/14
Posts: 203
Loc: Europe
You will measure the weakest part of the chain, and this would be the microphone of the mobile not the speakers of the piano nor its amplifier.


Edited by jtsn (03/29/15 11:18 AM)
_________________________
Hardware: Kawai ES100, Yamaha NP-31 (lent out), Steinberg UR22
Software: Moddart Pianoteq 5, Synthogy Ivory II American Concert D

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#2404169 - 03/30/15 01:09 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Kawai James Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 10267
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Brometeo,

Thank you for sharing your thoughts about your new CA97 - congratulations on your new piano.

If you have not done so already, may I recommend that you update to the latest CA97 software, available from:

http://www.kawai-global.com/support/updates/

Please let me know if this improves the sound/playability of the instrument.

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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#2404198 - 03/30/15 03:28 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Kawai James]
Brometeo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/11
Posts: 82
Loc: Madrid (Spain)
Originally Posted By Kawai James
Brometeo,
If you have not done so already, may I recommend that you update to the latest CA97 software, available from:

http://www.kawai-global.com/support/updates/

Please let me know if this improves the sound/playability of the instrument.


Thank you, James. I was searching for firmware updates yesterday in Kawai Europe page, but didn't found anything. This afternoon I'll upgrade and try.
_________________________
Kawai CA97

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#2404259 - 03/30/15 07:14 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Abby Pianoman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/07/14
Posts: 173
Loc: Ibiza, Balearic Islands, Spain
Originally Posted By Brometeo
I have now a Kawai CA97 smile

* If you play C-0 + C-1, press damper pedal without releasing notes and then release notes, sound doesn't dissolve naturaly. It is hear for ever, until yo release damper pedal.

Greets.


Hi Brometeo.
Congratulations on your new Piano.

If you have a Recalibration button, try to Re-Calibrate the damper pedal, it usually fixes this problem.

Try System / Pedal / then there usually will be a little button at the bottom right hand corner that says R.C.P.
That will be the one

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#2404289 - 03/30/15 08:49 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Kawai James]
Brometeo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/11
Posts: 82
Loc: Madrid (Spain)
I have updated firmware to the last version and commented bug seems fixed.

This weekend I have tested different configurations and have played some time. Touch is, definitely, better than CA95: very expresive when playing softly. Shigeru SK sound articulates very well, enhancing that feeling, but timbre seems to me very bombast after two days of practice. I like the overall efect when playing, but it is not the great experience that I'd like to see in a Kawai keyboard.

For now I'll enjoy all that I can. In future, I'd like a better modeled engine with more configuration options.
_________________________
Kawai CA97

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#2404291 - 03/30/15 08:51 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12572
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By Brometeo
I have updated firmware to the last version and commented bug seems fixed.

This weekend I have tested different configurations and have played some time. Touch is, definitely, better than CA95: very expresive when playing softly. Shigeru SK sound articulates very well, enhancing that feeling, but timbre seems to me very bombast after two days of practice. I like the overall efect when playing, but it is not the great experience that I'd like to see in a Kawai keyboard.

For now I'll enjoy all that I can. In future, I'd like a better modeled engine with more configuration options.
What more configuration would you like? What do you mean by the timbre being "bombast"? What things have you done in the Virtual Technician to tweak the sound?
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#2404309 - 03/30/15 09:39 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Morodiene]
Brometeo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/11
Posts: 82
Loc: Madrid (Spain)
Originally Posted By Morodiene

What more configuration would you like? What do you mean by the timbre being "bombast"? What things have you done in the Virtual Technician to tweak the sound?


Adjetive is "bombastic": heavy, inflated, pretentious. Perhaps not a good adjetive for sound. I hope now it is clearer smile

And add "dim" to that, for a better explanation.

I have some experience with virtual technician (owner of CA95 in last years), so I have tested many parameters to my preferences.

What I'd like to see in a Kawai (anytime in the future) is a modeled sound, with options for configuring physic model, like software pianos. I think that with samples is very difficult finding a good sound fom everybody. I have seen that option exist in some other brands that uses Fatar keyboard. Only dreaming on a Kawai touch with that sound versatility smile
_________________________
Kawai CA97

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#2404316 - 03/30/15 09:56 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12572
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By Brometeo
Originally Posted By Morodiene

What more configuration would you like? What do you mean by the timbre being "bombast"? What things have you done in the Virtual Technician to tweak the sound?


Adjetive is "bombastic": heavy, inflated, pretentious. Perhaps not a good adjetive for sound. I hope now it is clearer smile

And add "dim" to that, for a better explanation.

I have some experience with virtual technician (owner of CA95 in last years), so I have tested many parameters to my preferences.

What I'd like to see in a Kawai (anytime in the future) is a modeled sound, with options for configuring physic model, like software pianos. I think that with samples is very difficult finding a good sound fom everybody. I have seen that option exist in some other brands that uses Fatar keyboard. Only dreaming on a Kawai touch with that sound versatility smile


OK, thanks for clarifying. I have the MP11 which doesn't have the Shigeru so I was curious as to what it sounded like.

Of course, using software pianos is probably going to be superior to anything on board that I've seen/heard so far, so you may need to go that route. smirk
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#2404437 - 03/30/15 01:19 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Grigou Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 18
Loc: Lyon, France
I've tried Pianoteq (free version) on my Yamaha CLP 370, and yes, I agree with Brometeo : modeled software seems to be very promising wink
It must be a great thing with a Kawai GF keybord !


Edited by Grigou (03/30/15 01:19 PM)

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#2404450 - 03/30/15 01:38 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Frédéric L Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 10/29/13
Posts: 163
Loc: France
The CLP370 is not in the DPBSD but the CLP330 is and it is marked "with no visible or audible layer switching (to me; however the owner reports bad and audible layer switching)." about the layer switching. Perhaps the newer CLPs with RGE sound generator instead of Pure CF are better. They are sold as a continous timbre sound generator.

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#2404631 - 03/30/15 08:10 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Abby Pianoman]
Kawai James Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 10267
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Hello Abby,

Originally Posted By Abby Pianoman
If you have a Recalibration button, try to Re-Calibrate the damper pedal, it usually fixes this problem.

Try System / Pedal / then there usually will be a little button at the bottom right hand corner that says R.C.P.
That will be the one


The pedal calibration function is only provide with instruments that can use the F-30 (or F-20) pedal unit, such as the VPC1 and MP11/MP7.

The CA97's pedals (along with all other Kawai console DPs) use a different system that does not require calibration.

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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#2404633 - 03/30/15 08:11 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Kawai James Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 10267
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted By Brometeo
I have updated firmware to the last version and commented bug seems fixed.


That's good to hear.

May I ask you to clarify which bug (or bugs?) you were referring to specifically?

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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#2404730 - 03/31/15 03:35 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Kawai James]
Brometeo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/11
Posts: 82
Loc: Madrid (Spain)
Originally Posted By Kawai James

May I ask you to clarify which bug (or bugs?) you were referring to specifically?


Of course. When I pressed C0-C1, damping and releasing OR maintaining pressed, I got a non fading sound. Until releasing (damper or keys) it sounded for ever with a very unnatural quality. I think it only happened with Shigeru SK. With EX, for example, there was no problem.
_________________________
Kawai CA97

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#2404732 - 03/31/15 03:57 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Kawai James Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 10267
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Okay, thank you for the clarification.

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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#2404866 - 03/31/15 11:28 AM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Octaves_Up Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/10/15
Posts: 35
Thanks for your honest impressions! Where in your room is the piano set up? Is the back against a wall? Facing open air? The muddy/soft sound is a worry of mine (as I am also attempting to buy a CA97... but nobody has them available still). The sound samples on Kawai's website make the main pianos sound very... dull. My main hope was that they sounded more lively and bright when coming through the speaker system (and after working with the virtual technician).

Should my piano dealer ever actually get their CA97 in stock, I have a feeling I'll have to spend a lot of time with it before purchasing.

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#2404900 - 03/31/15 12:12 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
lolatu Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/01/13
Posts: 714
Loc: UK
It's very disappointing that Kawai are still releasing instruments with firmware bugs in them, especially ones so obvious that users (like OP) can find them within a day or two of first playing the instrument.

Many people haven't a clue what a firmware update is, and there will many instruments that will keep the bugs from now until they're scrapped in 20 or 30 years' time. The software should be tested MUCH more thoroughly, with the intention that there will never be any firmware updates.

I know that Kawai's testing is rubbish, because the CA95/65 firmware still has a menu option "Load User Memory" that simply does not work. Making sure all the menu options work is basic, basic stuff.
_________________________
Kawai CA95 / Steinberg UR22 / Sony MDR-7506 / Pianoteq Stage / Galaxy Vintage D
In the loft: Roland FP3 / Tannoy Reveal Active / K&M 18810

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#2404901 - 03/31/15 12:13 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Octaves_Up]
Brometeo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/11
Posts: 82
Loc: Madrid (Spain)
Originally Posted By Octaves_Up
Thanks for your honest impressions! Where in your room is the piano set up? Is the back against a wall? Facing open air?


It is sited against a wall, with a separation of 7" more or less.

Quote:

The muddy/soft sound is a worry of mine (as I am also attempting to buy a CA97... but nobody has them available still). The sound samples on Kawai's website make the main pianos sound very... dull. My main hope was that they sounded more lively and bright when coming through the speaker system (and after working with the virtual technician).


VT allows you very bright sounding piano, nothing like web demos (perhaps Kawai should care of product presentation and include demos recorded from live sessions with real quality pianists, like an acoustic piano).

Real problem (my "bombastic" qualifier) is that with new configuration (hard and soft) CA97 has a dim reverberant sound that annoys me. I have being playing with equalizer, and lowering some frequencies it sounds a lot better. Shigeru SK seems overprocessed before and after equalizing, but you can hear more detail. What I'd like is that sound was not so annoying by default. It is an strange behaviour. If you play C0-C1 ff, piano cabin resonates with awful vibration. Once adjusted equalizer, sound produced doesn't crisp ears. For a first impression, it seems a bad one. If I can fix it, then I breath again with a smile smile

One curious fact that I tested in shop was that CS7 sounds louder and very acoustic like compared to CAXX. I'd like to test new generation of CS based on CA97. It seems that cabin size and building is a very important sound factor, more than normally commented.
_________________________
Kawai CA97

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#2404907 - 03/31/15 12:20 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: lolatu]
lophiomys Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/01/14
Posts: 282
Loc: Austria, EU
re Software Quality, (OT)
it is most of the times a matter of how much budget a company is willing to spend on a reliable and stable software development team including separate testers. If that is broken or outsourced once, it cost even more to get back to acceptable standards.

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#2404935 - 03/31/15 01:30 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
Octaves_Up Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/10/15
Posts: 35
Originally Posted By Brometeo
Shigeru SK seems overprocessed before and after equalizing, but you can hear more detail. What I'd like is that sound was not so annoying by default. It is an strange behaviour. If you play C0-C1 ff, piano cabin resonates with awful vibration. Once adjusted equalizer, sound produced doesn't crisp ears. For a first impression, it seems a bad one. If I can fix it, then I breath again with a smile smile

One curious fact that I tested in shop was that CS7 sounds louder and very acoustic like compared to CAXX. I'd like to test new generation of CS based on CA97. It seems that cabin size and building is a very important sound factor, more than normally commented.


Hmm thats very interesting. Do you feel the piano suffers from the lack of distinction between notes that a lot of other DPs have?

By this I mean if you play a piece that has two or more distinct melodies going on, do the notes get muddied together, or do the individual tones ring clearly and distinctly? On an acoustic piano, I can play a piece and hear each individual note through a passage, but playing on a DP like the Yamaha CP4 stage, it feels like they're all getting smashed together.

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#2405045 - 03/31/15 05:59 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Octaves_Up]
Brometeo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/11
Posts: 82
Loc: Madrid (Spain)
Originally Posted By Octaves_Up
[quote=Brometeo]
Hmm thats very interesting. Do you feel the piano suffers from the lack of distinction between notes that a lot of other DPs have?


I don't think so... except with low frequencies on Shigeru SK. But I have seen that, after updating firmware, I have still some problems (bugs) with that piano. EX works fine in all tested cases, but Shigeru SK, when you press some combinations of keys and damper, goes on and on without end with a very annoying sound. The worst case is when you press C#0-C#1. Then you can hear a noisy mix of frequencies that goes for ever until you release damper pedal frown

So I don't know if mudy sound will dissapear when bugs are fixed. I hope so.

I have discovered another fact that has donfuse me for a long time until now: touch in Shigeru SK seems to be more hard that is, for example, in EX. That explains my perception of "dim" sound when playing. If I adjust touch in VT to light, or even light+ I get something like EX sound. This has changed clearly from CA95.
_________________________
Kawai CA97

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#2405083 - 03/31/15 07:55 PM Re: New Kawai CA97: first impression and some problems [Re: Brometeo]
DominikM Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/26/15
Posts: 2
I have a new CA67 at home and can confirm that some notes on SK EX last unnaturally long with damper.
Plus I have found 2 other issues when using headphones (default settings, firmware 1.0.5):
1. Both SK EX and SK-5: Lowest dynamic level samples (pp) have more noise than p. It gives you quite disturbing irregular hiss when playing silent passages. It can be heard especially on notes C3, G3, C4 (small octave) and some other around. Old Kawai EX is fine.
2. SK-5 sampling of notes G2 and H2 (B2) (great octave) has been done with one of 2 strings obviously muted (or with hammer not striking both strings). Poor job. :-(

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by PianoManChuck
04/01/15 06:57 PM
What's Hot!!
Trade Regrets: Gary Trafton - Piano Rep
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