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#2415479 - 04/29/15 08:44 PM On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today
Cleverson Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/29/15
Posts: 5
Dear all,

I intend to sell my old upright acoustic piano and aquire a digital one, mostly for studio recording. Because my style is mostly clasical, I'm looking for a model similar to an AP as most as possible. After searching and reading some manufacturers websites and forums like this one, it appears that the closest are the Yamaha cp-1 and the Roland v-piano, the later being more suitable for an AP replacement according to the general opinion. So one of my questions is if this is still true or there are new models already, as such instruments are from 2009.

Also, on reading the v-piano manual, it appears it's possible to play another instrument via midi, but it lacks basic controler functionality like assigning midi commands to knobs etc. Is it true?

Thank you,
Cleverson

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#2415481 - 04/29/15 08:51 PM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
Kawai James Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 10561
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
I'm more than a little biased, however for piano-oriented studio recording, I would recommend a VPC1 or MP11 (for the most realistic keyboard action) and a selection of software instruments (for the most realistic sound).

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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#2415484 - 04/29/15 08:58 PM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
TonyB Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/08/07
Posts: 695
Loc: Twin Cities
The V-Piano is really intended to be just that - a piano. It really doesn't offer much otherwise compared to the many other digital pianos and keyboards. If you want more flexibility, then Kawai James' response should be seriously considered. Also, for what the V-Piano does, it really is a matter of personal taste. Some people really take to the V-Piano and little else in the digital world will satisfy, while others feel that there is something about it that just isn't "right".

I have the V-Grand and am perfectly happy with it. I also own a Casio PX-5S because of its portability, and it is a surprisingly fine instrument too. For fooling around with midi and that stuff, I have a Linnstrument and a Roland Integra-7 sound module. Between these three, there is a lot of territory covered. These are not recommendations, but instead disclosure. I can't imagine recommending anything I have to another person because there is no way I can really understand that person's needs well enough to recommend accurately. "Try before you buy" is my mantra on these things. Kawai James' recommendations are broad enough to be "safe" for a wide range of needs.

Tony
_________________________
My blog: http://ajourneyintomusic.blogspot.com

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#2415488 - 04/29/15 09:17 PM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
Morodiene Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12688
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
I'm a classical pianist and I highly recommend either the Kawai VPC1 or the MP11. I own the MP11, and had a VPC1 for a short time. I returned it when the MP11 came out because I really needed a DP with on-board sounds for teaching purposes. But the action was top priority for me, sound secondary since you can use software pianos. With the MP11, however, I haven't really felt the need for software pianos. I have used it for MIDI since I compose, and I was able to get it up and running very easily. So I think anything in the VPC/MP11/CA line are worth checking out.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#2415495 - 04/29/15 09:51 PM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
Lazerlike42 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/23/11
Posts: 22
If you want to record as a part of a mix, then a CP1 or one of the Kawai's mentioned will work, but I am among those of the strong opinion that for solo recording, the Roland SuperNatural Pianos or the V-Piano (If you like it's sound, which some do not) are the only acceptable hardware-only solutions. Software packages like Ivory II paired with something like a Kawai VPC1 or MP11, or a Yamaha CP1 or Roland RD-800 or anything with a good action are probably the most realistic option available. Pianoteq is another software solution that may work, but like the V-Piano not everyone likes the sound.

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#2415503 - 04/29/15 10:26 PM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Lazerlike42]
Cleverson Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/29/15
Posts: 5
Thanks very much everyone's responces up to now.

In case I choose a hardware and software pair, will I still be able to emulate effects like sympathetic resonance, half pedal, detuning etc.?

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#2415525 - 04/30/15 12:02 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
emenelton Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/09
Posts: 695
If you get a VPC 1 you will never be able to just turn it on and play, you will always have to be tethered to a computer. If you get the MP 11 you will have a better keybed, internal sounds with resonance, and if you wanted to use software you can as well.

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#2415532 - 04/30/15 01:13 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: emenelton]
jtsn Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/19/14
Posts: 209
Loc: Europe
Originally Posted By emenelton
If you get a VPC 1 you will never be able to just turn it on and play, you will always have to be tethered to a computer.

You can also connect to a MIDI expander, a synth or a DP using MIDI.
_________________________
Hardware: Kawai ES100, Yamaha NP-31 (lent out), Steinberg UR22
Software: Moddart Pianoteq 5, Synthogy Ivory II American Concert D

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#2415566 - 04/30/15 04:42 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
Bluesman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/15/10
Posts: 32
Loc: Portugal
Physis piano is the top level. Even better than software instruments.

But most of people never tried it or even don't care.

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#2415573 - 04/30/15 05:12 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
stamkorg Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/14
Posts: 92
Originally Posted By Cleverson
Thanks very much everyone's responces up to now.

In case I choose a hardware and software pair, will I still be able to emulate effects like sympathetic resonance, half pedal, detuning etc.?


All the major software will give you a ton a parameters to tweak the sounds as you like.

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#2415582 - 04/30/15 06:26 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
bennevis Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 6250
Originally Posted By Cleverson
Because my style is mostly clasical, I'm looking for a model similar to an AP as most as possible.

If you play classical and want a pure acoustic piano substitute, the V-Piano is the only one that gives you the kind of response (to touch, articulation, dynamics, 'voicing' etc) that can make you forget that you're not playing the real thing. Nothing else comes close, even six years on.....

But it's not for you if you want other stuff - the V only gives you piano sounds.

I'd also be wary of software piano - for me, there's a feeling of 'disconnection' when I tried it. You should try it out before going down that route, to see if you get the same problem.
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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#2415584 - 04/30/15 06:29 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
Lazerlike42 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/23/11
Posts: 22
All of the hardware and software mentioned here so far offer full piano resonance, except the CP1.

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#2415586 - 04/30/15 06:35 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Bluesman]
MRC Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 11/05/14
Posts: 250
Loc: Germany
Originally Posted By Bluesman
Physis piano is the top level. Even better than software instruments.

But most of people never tried it or even don't care.


I tried one recently. The modelled sounds are impressive, but for me what lets it down is the keyboard. The action does not respond as well as the best Kawai actions, not to mention the Yamaha AvantGrand actions.

If I were setting up a studio to record digital piano, I would combine an AvantGrand N1 with a selection of software pianos, both sampled and modelled. If you are used to playing good acoustic grands, only a real grand action will give you the same feeling of control at all dynamic levels.

The AvantGrand is "only" a piano: it has no extra controller functions. It also has no possibility of adjusting the velocity response curve: if you want to do that, you'd need extra software. I know Pianoteq gives this possibility, but I don't know about the various other software pianos. I'd choose the AvantGrand because of the action, but if controller functions in the keyboard itself are more important for you, you'd probably be better off with the Kawai VPC-1.
_________________________
Richard Lipp grand (1913), Yamaha P2 upright (1983), Casio PX-150 digital (2013), Yamaha NU1 hybrid (2014)

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#2415601 - 04/30/15 07:59 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Bluesman]
Pete14 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/12/13
Posts: 398
Originally Posted By Bluesman
Physis piano is the top level. Even better than software instruments.

But most of people never tried it or even don't care.


Also, the Physis is cheaper than the V-piano, and perhaps as good in terms of sound technology (physical modeling). The dedicated stand (sold separately) has on-board speakers, so there's no need for external monitors, stands, and cables; which makes for a cleaner set up.

I believe Kraft has a Physis bundle that includes the stand for under $6,000.

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#2415612 - 04/30/15 08:42 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
Morodiene Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12688
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
I haven't played the Physis, but would like to someday just for comparison.

Cleverson: were you wanting to use MIDI at all in your setup? You mention having a DP for recording purposes, but that is very easily done with a direct audio line out into your computer. Of course, if you use software piano (which I believe will give you the best possible sound) then having something that works well with MIDI is going to be a must. I think every DP you buy these days has MIDI capability, but there's a difference between that and being easy to customize certain parameters in MIDI, and ease of setting up with software pianos.

I think the VPC1 and MP11 are great at this, but I can't speak for the other pianos being mentioned as I haven't tried them in a MIDI setup.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#2415618 - 04/30/15 08:54 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Morodiene]
Cleverson Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/29/15
Posts: 5
OK, thank you for all of hints so far, I will take not and consider everything.

Indeed, my dream is to test every stuff, but here in Brazil where I live it's hard to find a store offering such pianos ready to test. I'd need to go overseas...

My midi requirements are actually not for piano itself, but ocasionally other virtual instruments. I can of course buy a cheap controler just for this purpose, the only possible problem would be playing lightweight keys, as I'm primarily a pianist, not a keyboardist, which is different.

In any case, I'm not in a hurry, so will keep searching during the next weeks or months.

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#2415623 - 04/30/15 09:01 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
EssBrace Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2486
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
To the OP - you have lots of recommendations here - all have merits.

I think you're going to have to get out there are play some DPs because it is an acutely personal decision.

I have the Yamaha CP1 and I am happy with it. As a stand-alone solution to your particular needs I wouldn't recommend it though - action is slightly on the light side and is 'ungraded'. The sounds are extremely nice and very playable but I think lack something for a very classical orientated application.

bennevis is absolutely right about the V-Piano's articulation/dynamics etc. Nothing really approaches it in that respect. But having owned one myself I couldn't recommend that either. If you like its sound and action then it could be the right choice for you however. The action is very agile but a bit on the light side (not that that's a bad thing but the feel is a bit one-dimensional as all plastic action DPs are) and the sound is something I could never find a personal connection to. Your taste could be very different to mine however.

If you want a one box turn-it-on-and-play outcome then Roland RD-800 could be the answer; recording quality piano sounds and no software/computer hassles and Roland's best key action.

The full Physis package with speaker-equipped stand assembly looks compelling but it will be difficult to find one to try. And I do think it is something that needs to be tried before purchase.

In your shoes my starting point would probably be the Kawai + software route suggested by a couple of others mainly because the Kawai action is so good. If I had a little more money however I'd probably go for MRC's suggestion. Cheapest AvantGrand (N1 - real grand piano action) plus software for the sounds. If you're feeling lazy and want power-up sounds the AG is fine. Not software standard but quite okay for most needs.

Good luck,

Steve
_________________________
Yamaha CP1

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#2415768 - 04/30/15 04:30 PM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
TonyB Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/08/07
Posts: 695
Loc: Twin Cities
Too many choices - time to take up the ukulele - the ultimate in simplicity while still offering some polyphony. smile

Everybody has their favorites, so it is completely understandable that there are far too many solutions. Best of luck in sorting all this out.

Tony
_________________________
My blog: http://ajourneyintomusic.blogspot.com

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#2415775 - 04/30/15 04:58 PM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
CyberGene Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/07
Posts: 787
Loc: Sofia, Bulgaria
Most of the software pianos don't support half pedaling and/or repedaling. And even those that do, can't do it right. For a serious classical pianist that would be a deal breaker. It is only Pianoteq that can perfectly emulate all those effects but its sound is not to everyone's taste. I'd go for MP11.


Edited by CyberGene (04/30/15 05:02 PM)
_________________________
http://www.myspace.com/evgenykumanov
Current DP: Kawai ES7
Previous DP-s: Kawai MP6, Kawai CA63, Roland RD-700SX, Roland FP-5, Yamaha P90, Korg SP-200, Casio CDP-100

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#2415837 - 04/30/15 08:01 PM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: Cleverson]
ElmerJFudd Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/07/10
Posts: 484
Without a doubt you will want to look at the Yamaha AvantGrand line for two reasons. First, the action is arguably the most similar to an acoustic's we've seen. And secondly, it's sound is sample based for those of us that are not yet convinced by the sound modeling technology (Pianoteq, V-Grand, Physis). Like any of the models mentioned, playing them is key to choosing wisely - and all of them can easily have their sound upgraded with MIDI or (MIDI over USB) and a laptop running the latest software pianos.

AvantGrand N3

AvantGrand N2

AvantGrand N1

Here are some video/audio recordings of Phillip Johnston playing virtuosic classical repertoire using the AvantGrand N3 as a keyboard controller for Garritan CFX virtual piano software.

Other controller functions can easily be added with any number of inexpensive devices.

Control Surfaces

MIDI Controllers - keyboard based, drum pad based, foot switch and pedal input, etc.



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#2416021 - 05/01/15 08:42 AM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: ElmerJFudd]
jefinho Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/08/08
Posts: 46
Loc: The Netherlands
Originally Posted By ElmerJFudd
Without a doubt you will want to look at the Yamaha AvantGrand line for two reasons. First, the action is arguably the most similar to an acoustic's we've seen. And secondly, it's sound is sample based for those of us that are not yet convinced by the sound modeling technology (Pianoteq, V-Grand, Physis). Like any of the models mentioned, playing them is key to choosing wisely - and all of them can easily have their sound upgraded with MIDI or (MIDI over USB) and a laptop running the latest software pianos.


I completely agree with you! After doing lots and lots of research I decided to buy a N3 last year. Best thing I ever bought.

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#2416171 - 05/01/15 03:23 PM Re: On Roland v-Piano or whatever is the top level today [Re: jefinho]
Cleverson Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/29/15
Posts: 5
Thank you all.

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#2426394 - Today at 10:28 AM A little information please [Re: Cleverson]
Cleverson Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/29/15
Posts: 5
Dear all,

Does the v-piano has any knob or slider which can be assigned to midi commands to control a software synth? Reading the instrument's manual, it appears I can use it as a minimal midi controller, but it's not clear to what extent, and I don't have access to the instrument now.

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#2426396 - Today at 10:41 AM Re: A little information please [Re: Cleverson]
Morodiene Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12688
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By Cleverson
Dear all,

Does the v-piano has any knob or slider which can be assigned to midi commands to control a software synth? Reading the instrument's manual, it appears I can use it as a minimal midi controller, but it's not clear to what extent, and I don't have access to the instrument now.


I've not played one, but from looking at the pictures and specs, it appears that there are no sliders and only two knobs, a volume and an ambience knob. Not sure what the ambience knob does, but I'm doubting that either of these are assignable.

So while it does have MIDI In/Out/Thru and MIDI IUSB capabilities, it believe that is where the MIDI controller functions end.

If you're looking for a great MIDI controller as well as great acoustic piano action, look into the Kawai MP11.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#2426519 - 3 minutes 44 seconds ago Re: A little information please [Re: Cleverson]
bennevis Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 6250
Originally Posted By Cleverson
Dear all,

Does the v-piano has any knob or slider which can be assigned to midi commands to control a software synth? Reading the instrument's manual, it appears I can use it as a minimal midi controller, but it's not clear to what extent, and I don't have access to the instrument now.

I own a V, but have no idea what you mean - there are five MIDI settings that allow you to change values from 0 to 128, including stuff like MIDI Tx channel, Rx Channel, Tx Bank select (MSB or LSB), and Tx Program Change, but that's all gobbledegook to me.

The V has a minimalist control panel - most of the adjustments involve pressing a button one or more times to scroll down the list, then turning the main dial to get the value you want.
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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