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#2558655 - 07/25/16 04:12 PM DP with good orchestral sounds?
Radio.Octave Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 534
I already have a grand piano, so I've got the acoustic sound covered smile but I like to play a lot of movie scores, which tend to be orchestral in nature. Can you guys recommend a keyboard with decent touch, full 88-keys and most importantly good string sounds? Thanks!
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#2558658 - 07/25/16 04:21 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 13809
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
For string sounds, you don't want a really good DP, but am 88-key MIDI controller, and use software sounds for the strings. You will achieve a much more realistic sound this way.

But in case you're looking for just playing string sounds (and not into recording them to sound realistic), then you may want to look at some less than 88-key options. They will have a better synth-like action which is much better to play string sounds on, and strings don't ever go as high or low as an 88-key provides.

Any of the good workstations would be sufficient for this, but personally I like the string sounds on Yamaha.

Do you have a budget? That would help narrow down the possibilities.
_________________________
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#2558706 - 07/25/16 08:07 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
Kawai James Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 11939
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Kurzweil boards are often praised for their orchestral sounds.

Cheers,
James
x
_________________________
Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

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#2558770 - 07/26/16 05:00 AM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
AndrewJCW Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/10/14
Posts: 641
Loc: Middle of nowhere, Australia
https://youtu.be/BCDjxLluQeE?t=8m28s

I thought this sounded pretty good.
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#2558819 - 07/26/16 09:25 AM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
ElmerJFudd Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/07/10
Posts: 1149
Sure, Kurzweil and Yamaha have spent a great deal of time making sure their instruments can cover plenty of orchestral timbres. The OP is going to have to suggest a budget. The Kurzweil Forte and Yamaha Montage are at the top of the price points.

A Kawai VPC-1 + MacBook Pro running MainStage is a decent idea as well for someone owning a grand piano.

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#2558930 - 07/26/16 08:29 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
Radio.Octave Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 534
Thanks for the suggestions. Budget wise, I'm not really sure. I think something in the $1-2K range would work. I was leaning toward something piano-like in feel since that's what I'm already accustomed to. Built-in speakers would be nice, too.

That Montage on Youtube sounded great, but that's probably more than I need at this point. Hoping to find something of decent quality with strings that don't sound too cheesy. For example, I'm working on Roll Tide from Crimson Tide currently. It sounds nice on piano, but not quite as good as strings.
_________________________
Kawai RX-6 BLAK

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#2558940 - 07/26/16 09:22 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
Jay Roland Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/08/13
Posts: 986
Loc: Edmonton Alberta
http://www.roland.ca/products/fa-08/

Great workstation with about 2100 very good quality sounds and a nice key action. If you don't find the exact sounds you're looking for, you go here:

http://axial.roland.com/category/fa-06_fa-08/

The expansions listed on that page are no charge and can be freely swapped in and out of your Workstation as the need arises.

(at least two of the free expansions have orchestral and string patches ready to go)

Comes in under 2K USD at $1799.00

Worth some research.

Jay


Edited by Jay Roland (07/26/16 09:23 PM)
Edit Reason: spelling and grammar.
_________________________
My posts represent no official statement from my employer in any way, shape, or form.
I'm here to help past, present, and future Roland Customers with the best advice I can possibly give.

Yes....the new Roland HP and LX Pianos are STILL in fact modelled.


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#2558976 - 07/26/16 11:58 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
ElmerJFudd Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/07/10
Posts: 1149
Yamaha MOXF8 as well is worth a look in this price range.

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#2558989 - Yesterday at 01:05 AM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
moleskincrusher Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 206
Yamaha/Kurzweil/Roland offer great workstations, but if you want high quality for value don't overlook the Casio Privia PX-560 or the PX-5S. Former is US$1,200, latter is US$1,000. They have a great online user community with wonderful string patches supplied by owners.

Also, for authentic non-cheesy string sounds your choice of amp/speaker is critical. If you get the Casio, spend the money you save on best speaker(s) you can afford.

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#2559029 - Yesterday at 08:14 AM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: moleskincrusher]
Radio.Octave Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 534
Originally Posted By moleskincrusher
Yamaha/Kurzweil/Roland offer great workstations, but if you want high quality for value don't overlook the Casio Privia PX-560 or the PX-5S. Former is US$1,200, latter is US$1,000. They have a great online user community with wonderful string patches supplied by owners.

Also, for authentic non-cheesy string sounds your choice of amp/speaker is critical. If you get the Casio, spend the money you save on best speaker(s) you can afford.


Is there anything decent with built-in speakers? My piano already takes up a ton of space in the room, so I'm looking for something with the smallest footprint as possible.
_________________________
Kawai RX-6 BLAK

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#2559118 - Yesterday at 01:52 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 13809
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By Radio.Octave
Originally Posted By moleskincrusher
Yamaha/Kurzweil/Roland offer great workstations, but if you want high quality for value don't overlook the Casio Privia PX-560 or the PX-5S. Former is US$1,200, latter is US$1,000. They have a great online user community with wonderful string patches supplied by owners.

Also, for authentic non-cheesy string sounds your choice of amp/speaker is critical. If you get the Casio, spend the money you save on best speaker(s) you can afford.


Is there anything decent with built-in speakers? My piano already takes up a ton of space in the room, so I'm looking for something with the smallest footprint as possible.


OK, then you're looking at more digital pianos at the top end of your budget. They will have better piano actions, but again, this is not ideal for playing orchestral instruments.

Kawai ES8 as speakers and prices at about $2k. I've heard great things about the action on this, but I'm unfamiliar with the string sounds. Definitely worth checking out in your search.

The Casio PX-560 has built-in speakers, but I can't attest to the quality of their string sounds, but pricewise it's around $1200, so a good bargain if you like the sounds.

The Roland FP-80 has speakers and comes in at about $1800 USD. I'm guessing the sounds on this are better than Casio.
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#2559131 - Yesterday at 02:39 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
Charles Cohen Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 2927
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Originally Posted By Radio.Octave

. . .
Is there anything decent with built-in speakers? My piano already takes up a ton of space in the room, so I'm looking for something with the smallest footprint as possible.


If you want 88 weighted keys, it's going to be big. The footprint of a "with-speakers" DP isn't much different from the footprint of a "no-speakers" DP.

Compare the Roland FP-80 (with speakers) to the RD-700 or RD-800 (or Casio PX5s), as examples.

If space really matters, get a 61-key, synth-action keyboard -- lots of Motif spin-offs (MOXF, MOX, MX, MM) are available to fit your budget. [That's not a recommendation, I don't know enough.]

As a side benefit, it'll be light enough to stack against a wall when you're not using it, if space is _really_ tight.
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. Charles
---------------------------
PX-350 / microKorg XL+ / Pianoteq / Lounge Lizard / Korg Wavedrum / EV ZXA1 speaker

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#2559158 - Yesterday at 05:07 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Kawai James]
Bosendorff Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/11/12
Posts: 625
Originally Posted By Kawai James
Kurzweil boards are often praised for their orchestral sounds.

+1
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Dampp Chaser electronic controller

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#2559223 - Yesterday at 10:16 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
Radio.Octave Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 534
I checked out some boards at Guiter Center this evening (really the only place around me that has a decent selection). I played around with the Yamaha YGP-535. I thought the strings sounded pretty good, but it doesn't have realistic keys. They actually weren't bad, but they seemed to be just slightly narrower than regular piano keys. I didn't measure them, but it sure felt that way.

Other than that, they had some workstations/synths for $1000+. One of the Yamahas sounded nice, but it was $1699 plus I'd have to buy speakers. Not sure I want to blow that much cash just to play around with some string sounds. Wish I could try some Kurzweils, but they don't seem to carry them.
_________________________
Kawai RX-6 BLAK

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#2559228 - Yesterday at 10:50 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
ElmerJFudd Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/07/10
Posts: 1149
Ok, I have a better idea of where you're coming from because you've shared a budget. Please take a look at the Casio PX-560 @ $1199.99. See if you can get your dealer to bundle the CS-67 stand and SP-33 triple pedal. You can use your existing piano bench with it. This instrument offers a great deal at a fantastic price point. But if you find that steep, you can similarly look for a bundle around the PX-360. $899.99.


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#2559238 - Yesterday at 11:53 PM Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: Radio.Octave]
Kawai James Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 11939
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted By Radio.Octave
I checked out some boards at Guiter Center this evening (really the only place around me that has a decent selection). I played around with the Yamaha YGP-535. I thought the strings sounded pretty good, but it doesn't have realistic keys. They actually weren't bad, but they seemed to be just slightly narrower than regular piano keys. I didn't measure them, but it sure felt that way.

Other than that, they had some workstations/synths for $1000+. One of the Yamahas sounded nice, but it was $1699 plus I'd have to buy speakers. Not sure I want to blow that much cash just to play around with some string sounds. Wish I could try some Kurzweils, but they don't seem to carry them.


If you have an iPad it might be worth checking out some of the music/sound creation apps available. If you're able to find a sound you like, you could hook the iPad up to any instrument with MIDI/USB connectors and use to extend the available sounds.

Cheers,
James
x
_________________________
Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

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#2559241 - 44 minutes 44 seconds ago Re: DP with good orchestral sounds? [Re: ElmerJFudd]
Radio.Octave Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 534
Originally Posted By ElmerJFudd
Ok, I have a better idea of where you're coming from because you've shared a budget. Please take a look at the Casio PX-560 @ $1199.99. See if you can get your dealer to bundle the CS-67 stand and SP-33 triple pedal. You can use your existing piano bench with it. This instrument offers a great deal at a fantastic price point. But if you find that steep, you can similarly look for a bundle around the PX-360. $899.99.



I'll check that out, thanks.
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Kawai RX-6 BLAK

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