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#657583 - 12/05/04 11:11 AM Roland RD 170
bmac Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/04/04
Posts: 5
Loc: Georgia
Was wondering if anyone here has any experience with the Roland RD 170. I am looking for a nice keyboard for my kids (7 and 13). Neither has had piano lessons though my youngest has expressed a desire to do so. My oldest plays the trumpet. Both seem to enjoy "playing" with a small Casio keyboard. My wife and I realize that in order for either of them to develop musically, we need to get a better keyboard.

Now, I've read many threads on this forum before joining and have heard the arguements against getting a stage piano for home use. And those arguements do make sense. However, I like the portability (as in being able to put the keyboard away when necessary - not travelling with it)that the stage pianos offer. And, I like the price point and features of the RD 170 as well as the Roland reputation.

Although it makes sense for most folks to go to a store and try out the various models for "feel and sound", because I am not a pianist and don't have a very discriminating ear, I doubt this would be a useful exercise for me. Thererfore, I am perfectly willing to base my buying decision on the expertise of others who are generous enough to share their opinions and experiences with me.

So, with that said, does anyone have any specific criticism or or praise for this instrument? I plan to pair the keyboard with Roland's CM-30 Cube monitor per a recommendation from a local music store. I think one of these amps will suffice initially but I can add another for stereo sound if necessary.

Finally, concerning a stand, I'm seeing relatively inexpensive X-style stands and nicer, costlier Z-style. For our uses, would the X-style be OK or should I pony up for the more robust Z-style?

Thanks in advance for any and all advice. This is a great forum. Most of the stuff I've read is way over my head, but I've been able to glean quite a bit of info here. I look forward to reading your replies.

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#657584 - 12/05/04 01:08 PM Re: Roland RD 170
rintincop Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/04
Posts: 1654
Look at the QuikLok WS-550 stand.
1966 Mason & Hamlin piano.

#657585 - 12/05/04 06:57 PM Re: Roland RD 170
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
The RD170 is in a completely different league than Casio. Roland makes professional instruments. Casio makes watches and toys. Try everything you can. Stay with Roland, Yamaha or Korg and you'll be fine.

QuikLok makes great stands. I have an X stand and a Z stand. The X stand is more versatile, and no, it's not wobbly. The Z stand is extremely sturdy, but not adjustable.
PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

#657586 - 12/05/04 07:28 PM Re: Roland RD 170
bmac Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/04/04
Posts: 5
Loc: Georgia

Obviously, from your signature, you are a professional musician who likely can detect the subtle nuances between different instruments. As such, its easy to understand why you would avoid a product that doesn't sound quite right to you. My children, I don't believe, will be as discriminating. In addition to the price, I liked the full 88 keys, fair number of voices, metronome, recording features, etc. of the Roland. I would like to bump up to the FP-5 but I am not sure I can justify the extra $$ until I see if my kids develop a stronger interest / aptitude. Same is true for the Yamaha P250 - very nice but twice the price of a RD170.

I did a search for Kawai and I don't seem to find a very big US market (as determined by the number of vendors on a Froogle search). Could be that I didn't search properly. While I'm sure the Casio products are fine, I just have a mental block with this brand and do not see them as serious instruments. Again, its probably just me and they might be perfectly fine for a starter piano.

Thank you for your time and opinions.

#657587 - 12/05/04 07:35 PM Re: Roland RD 170
bmac Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/04/04
Posts: 5
Loc: Georgia

Thank you for your response. As you can see from my reply to rintincop, I have the same feeling about Casio. I did search the QuikLoc stands and they make quite a variety of both styles. I did see some Z-stlye stands that the vendor described as height adjustable. Still, they may not be as adjustable as the X-style.

Thanks for your reassurances re: the Roland brand. Even though the piano sound of the RD 170 may not be quite as good as other brands, I feel confident with the Roland name and I'm sure my kids will think it sounds great.

Do you have any experience with the CM-30 cube monitor?

#657588 - 12/06/04 06:43 AM Re: Roland RD 170
ProPianoGuyBC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/24/04
Posts: 388
The Roland RD170 is developed with the professional musician in mind so the piano sound although maybe not as acoustically pleasing in a solo environment sits very nicely in a live sound or studio mix. If you want a nice solo piano for the home, Look at The "F" or "FP" series from Roland as they are designed more for the home user with a different character and timbre than the "RD" series

#657589 - 12/06/04 06:50 AM Re: Roland RD 170
rintincop Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/04
Posts: 1654
Casio was founded by Tadao Kashio in Nangoku City in Japan. Two years ago they hired a new team of digital piano designers that have developed new products.
1966 Mason & Hamlin piano.

#657590 - 12/06/04 10:17 AM Re: Roland RD 170
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
No I'm not. I played the Casios at winter NAMM 2004. Hated them.
PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

#657591 - 12/06/04 09:00 PM Re: Roland RD 170
bmac Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/04/04
Posts: 5
Loc: Georgia

Thanks for the comments. I have looked at the FP models and, while I admit they do look like they would serve my needs well, they are a little pricier than I wanted. However, I'm considering taking the plunge and ordering an FP-5. Built-in speakers, custom stand available, more voices, expandability, true hammer keys and, based upon your comments, better sound in the home. However, with the stand, I will pay about $400 more than I intended to pay. I guess I could reduce this differnce some if I went for an aftermarket stand instead of the Roland.

rintincop and SteveY,

Didn't mean to get anyone drawn into a dispute. I will accept rintincop's assessment of the Casio, but will probably not consider this brand as I can't shake my bias against this company as a legitimate player in the high quality instrument market. And, rintincop, just for the record (not that it makes any difference to me)the Casio models are designated "Privia", not "Presario" (which is a model of computer made by Compaq).

So, if the CFO (wife) agrees, looks like the kids may get an FP-5 for Christmas (which is why I can't wait until next years models come out).

Thanks again for your help with this decision.


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