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#2445724 - Yesterday at 01:14 AM Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards
damos3000 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/23/15
Posts: 2
I know this topic has probably been done to death already - but I wanted to bring it up, and also say hi to the forum as this is my first post here.

I started looking into digital pianos about a month back, and I did alot of research into the different types and features sets available, including looking on this forum. I had an idea in mind of what I wanted to get, had decided on a console style with look being very important, something simple with limited functions since I just want us to play piano and not be distracted by other features. I was thinking if I went Yamaha I'd be getting the YDP-162/181 because of the better keyboard than YDP-142.

We went to a few different shops to try them out, and got the chance to play a bunch of different makes and models. After trying out different boards by Casio, Yamaha, Roland and I think a couple others (didn't get to try any Kawai unfortunately), the hands down winner to me was the Yamaha YDP-142 with the Graded Hammer Standard (GHS), rather than the 'higher end' Graded Hammer (GH) keyboard or other makes keyboards. I've played since a young age and to me this did feel like a more natural keyboard, something similar to the mid-range upright acoustic pianos that I learned and played on. The GH keyboard to me felt excessively heavy, and the other makes I tried were very nice but I felt the best performance was still the GHS keyboard. I did most of the testing sound off, just looking for the feel.

I know this will probably not jive with the opinions of most experts, and obviously with the pricing. I really liked the better amp/speakers and higher posture of other models, but this to me was the best, and my daughter made the same statement before I mentioned any preference myself. I went into the shops fully expecting to spend my 2k budget but that is what we liked best so I was forced to leave some of that cash in my wallet.

I thought it was worth sharing, at the very least understanding that individual feel and preference goes a long way, and at most that the GHS may be a better keyboard than the GH in certain measures of comparison. Very much enjoying playing the piano, and look forward to more discussions on the various forums here!

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#2445732 - Yesterday at 01:39 AM Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: damos3000]
Charles Cohen Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 2027
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
"Leaving cash in the wallet" -- that's a rare event! Congratulations on finding a DP that you like, for _less_ than you expected to spend.
_________________________
. Charles
---------------------------
PX-350 / microKorg XL+ / Pianoteq / Lounge Lizard / ZXA1 speaker

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#2445748 - Yesterday at 03:59 AM Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: damos3000]
peterws Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/21/12
Posts: 4404
Loc: Northern England.
GHS is light, which is a great bonus for the young. And old . . . . the black keys do have a reasonable length to them which facilitates those awkward chords. I`d prefer this to GH which is heavy and clinical. There are others out there which you didn`t try, but you got the reliable option, imo, and with a nice sound to boot.

Enjoy!
_________________________
"I'm playing all the right notes � but not necessarily in the right order." Eric Morecambe

""

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#2445924 - Yesterday at 03:16 PM Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: peterws]
damos3000 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/23/15
Posts: 2
Originally Posted By peterws
GHS is light, which is a great bonus for the young. And old . . . . the black keys do have a reasonable length to them which facilitates those awkward chords. I`d prefer this to GH which is heavy and clinical. There are others out there which you didn`t try, but you got the reliable option, imo, and with a nice sound to boot.

Enjoy!


Thanks, glad to see I'm not the only one who prefers the lighter GHS over the GH keys. I thought there was something wrong with me, after reading all of the reviews and information available, but then trying it in person and preferring the opposite of what was recommended almost unanimously. I did some tests of playing rapid combinations and to me it felt like the lighter keys would perform better there also, could just be the way I tested it.

I agree, there's tons of options I didn't try out, but I didn't want to get bogged down in the selection process - I wanted to play ! So I did try at least 8-10 different viable options in the price range, some for longer than others, and that's what I came up with. It also matches my Yamaha acoustic guitar which I love.


Edited by damos3000 (Yesterday at 03:17 PM)

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#2445929 - Yesterday at 03:22 PM Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: damos3000]
spanishbuddha Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/09
Posts: 2630
Loc: UK
GHS isn't (just) light, it's springy and mushy which inhibits good dynamic control. This is compared to GH and the better actions from Roland and Kawai. The current Casio too. Of course this IMHO, and what works for you is just fine, and it seems like you've both been playing longer than I have, so what do I know.

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#2445987 - Yesterday at 05:35 PM Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: spanishbuddha]
peterws Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/21/12
Posts: 4404
Loc: Northern England.
Originally Posted By spanishbuddha
GHS isn't (just) light, it's springy and mushy which inhibits good dynamic control. This is compared to GH and the better actions from Roland and Kawai. The current Casio too. Of course this IMHO, and what works for you is just fine, and it seems like you've both been playing longer than I have, so what do I know.


I have a hunch that some GHS actions are more equal than others . . . (in other words, they are not all the same. I`ve tried `em in the shop. . . ) but some pianos have different response curves which have an effect on how the keyboard feels. I`ve tried the YDP models and the 142 is a fine instrument, imo.
_________________________
"I'm playing all the right notes � but not necessarily in the right order." Eric Morecambe

""

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#2446068 - Yesterday at 10:05 PM Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: damos3000]
Dwscamel Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/22/13
Posts: 617
I agree with spanishbuddha that GHS is too difficult to control properly. I felt like my dynamics were all over the place (and not ONLY because my technique was poor) for the two-odd years I had a GHS keyboard.

Now that I have access to a grand piano once per week at my teacher's studio, I even more strongly disagree with using GHS. But if you can control it and enjoy it, I think that's fantastic.

I agree with peterws, too, that the GHS actions between boards are different from each other! I suspect there may be a "useable" GHS in one of the older P-series or YDP boards . . . .
_________________________
Beethoven - Op.49 No.1 (sonata 19)
Czerny - Op.299 Nos. 5,7 (School of Velocity)
Liszt - S.172 No.2 (Consolation No.2)

Dream piece:

Rachmaninoff - Sonata 2, movement 2 in E minor

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#2446153 - Today at 05:03 AM Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: Charles Cohen]
Hendrik42 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/19/15
Posts: 155
Loc: Germany
Originally Posted By Charles Cohen
Congratulations on finding a DP that you like, for _less_ than you expected to spend.


Thats always great, isn't it? When we started into the "Can I have a piano, dad", I was also starting with higher expectations on budget required and its really great when you find that you can, but must not.
_________________________
Kawai CN35. Daughter wanted a piano, so we got one. Now who'll learn faster? ;-)

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#2446196 - Today at 09:27 AM Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: Dwscamel]
Morodiene Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12924
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By Dwscamel
I agree with spanishbuddha that GHS is too difficult to control properly. I felt like my dynamics were all over the place (and not ONLY because my technique was poor) for the two-odd years I had a GHS keyboard.

Now that I have access to a grand piano once per week at my teacher's studio, I even more strongly disagree with using GHS. But if you can control it and enjoy it, I think that's fantastic.


I agree also that GHS is inferior, and I feel that it has to do with experience playing on an acoustic grand. If someone doesn't have that, then I can see how the lighter action may be preferred.

Quote:
I agree with peterws, too, that the GHS actions between boards are different from each other! I suspect there may be a "useable" GHS in one of the older P-series or YDP boards . . . .


It may be more of a case of how the firmware responds to the GHS - with the EQ settings, or better quality/higher bitrate samples, things like that. These can have a huge impact on how one ends up playing.

To the OP: don't feel bad for liking the GHS. My tastes in actions have changed over the years as well, and as you and your daughter progress, you may want to upgrade at some point. But you should always go with what you love, and that sounds like you did just that.

Congratulations on your purchase (under budget!!) and I hope you and your daughter get many years of enjoyment out of it. smile
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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#2446211 - Today at 11:22 AM Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: damos3000]
Alexander Borro Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/18/14
Posts: 353
Loc: UK
For the first time in over a year I had a tickle on some other ivories when I went to pick up some sheets in one of the shops here yesterday, they had the Arius and also the CLP 545, 585 in display, I spent about 10 mins on each for the fun of it.

Now, with just over a year under the belt, funny that I liked the CLP 545 least, of course that is coming from my current board a Casio, no real acoustic grand experience. The inertia needed to overcome to get the 545 keys down felt too heavy for my liking, once in motion it felt nice enough. On the 585 I liked this a lot more and it felt lighter in that sense, I really liked that one more over the 545. Then, the first experience of escapement, it had me puzzled, I did not like at all, not one bit, but this is something you have to learn to get used to I suppose, then I played one of Arius, and said to myself, that's more like it, not sure if that's a good sign laugh

Interesting though, with that little experience I could feel they were all very different straight away in their own way. My personal feeling anyway is that I like "lighter" or probably better put, responsive actions. Perhaps I sense a Roland would be right up my street in future from the way people describe those actions smile

The other shops has all the Kawais so not tried these for a year since I started. Still, I am happy with the Casio for now, but there are things on it I begin to feel I like less and less, but it's not at the stage of anything like that it isn't good enough to get on with. In a sense I feel preferences are in their early stages of beginning to form I suppose, though I guess I'd need to spend a few weeks on other keys to really know better, not just 10 minutes.

I could in part see how some may like GHS, it was light, I liked that, but I also agree and I find the same on the Casio a bit, a bit mushy in some ways and not the most precise, for a better a word, but what took me by surprise more than anything, playing softly with escapement on higher end actions was just a weird feeling, I have no problems getting less < 10 in velocity easily when I need on the Casio anyway to play softly, but with escapement, its like you have to push through and overcome a nasty hump, and as a result actually somehow end up louder, strange indeed, it would take some getting use to I think. I thought it would be a more subtle difference, but that's not what it felt like.

All in all I feel, there is no rush to upgrade to anything, more an interesting curiosity to try something else just over a year in and see how it would feel after that time. I even had a compliment about my playing from a lonely bystander in the shop in the 585, asking "what's that piece", but it was nothing, just one of my varied improvisations I often tend to make up once done with the serious stuff. I guess I must have at least learned something in a year good or bad, probably both, being a stubborn self teacher so far.

Feel free to say, get that teacher already, it is probably going to happen more than likely sooner than later. but I enjoy the solo ride thus far, though it is a very bumpy one at times and a rollercoaster, and when I was in the shop too, pun intended on the escapement laugh


Edited by Alexander Borro (Today at 11:24 AM)
_________________________
started 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, The Giant, Cubase 7 elements.
My struggles: https://soundcloud.com/alexander-borro

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#2446238 - 44 minutes 54 seconds ago Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: Alexander Borro]
peterws Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/21/12
Posts: 4404
Loc: Northern England.
An interesting aside. The GHS is the successor to a previous Yamaha action, AE or "Action Effect" (other definitions have been mentioned) which was deliberately light for younger fingers whilst having the general feel of a piano set up; there are light acoustic actions around. It was installed in the entry level clavs; I encountered this on one of the first YDP (Arius they call them now) pianos which had 3 pedals. The entry Clavs had but two, but carried the higher price tag.

I was most impressed with the lightness on the YDP, which enabled me to play stuff I found difficult elsewhere. I eventually bought the CLP 820S which was a splendid chunky looking offering which took forever to be delivered.

It was used on a regular basis in a restaurant several nights a week for some years. I was glad of the light action and soft stool . . . but not the weight!
_________________________
"I'm playing all the right notes � but not necessarily in the right order." Eric Morecambe

""

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#2446246 - 38 minutes 43 seconds ago Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: damos3000]
Doritos Flavoured Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 10/10/12
Posts: 341
Loc: Brazil
I jumped from the GHS to a casio tri-sensor and it was very worthwhile. Heavier, yes, but that just demands some practice for adjustment. Better responsiveness makes for better trills, one of the first things I noticed.

That said, I had the same problem as a teen: the upright my dad bought was lighter than my teacher's and I had to adjust my playing back and forth... all keyboards are different but it's really just a matter of adjusting yourself to them.

Bach is known to have complained about the heavy action of some early german fortepianos and perhaps it was his very feedback - the feedback of a respected authority on keyboards - that eventually made them evolve into the lightweight action vienesse fortepianos were known for?
_________________________
unlocked by keys
wordless poetry sings free
- piano music -

my piano haiku

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#2446262 - 3 minutes 46 seconds ago Re: Yamaha GH vs GHS keyboards [Re: Doritos Flavoured]
Morodiene Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12924
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By Doritos Flavoured
I jumped from the GHS to a casio tri-sensor and it was very worthwhile. Heavier, yes, but that just demands some practice for adjustment. Better responsiveness makes for better trills, one of the first things I noticed.

That said, I had the same problem as a teen: the upright my dad bought was lighter than my teacher's and I had to adjust my playing back and forth... all keyboards are different but it's really just a matter of adjusting yourself to them.

Bach is known to have complained about the heavy action of some early german fortepianos and perhaps it was his very feedback - the feedback of a respected authority on keyboards - that eventually made them evolve into the lightweight action vienesse fortepianos were known for?


I actually prefer a lighter action for Bach and a heavier one for Chopin, Brahms, etc. For Classical composers like Mozart or Beethoven, it does depend a bit, but there are merits to both.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher FT



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