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#658319 - 08/10/04 10:09 PM accoustic or digital?
forpiano Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 12
Loc: US estern
Hello, I'm new to this forum and I've read through the posts and got many good information. But I still have some questions and would like opinions from experts here.

I want my 5 year old boy to play piano. So far he hasn't show any talent or special interest. I just want him to play/use with his fingers to stimulate his brain, and to be able to enjoy music in his life. I don't know much about music and I certainly hope he could enjoy more, and I can learn with him

An accoustic one is too expensive and heavy and need maintenance. And I don't like to rent. So I'm thinking about buying a digital piano <$1000 to try 1st, my question is:

1. For those like Yamaha p90-120, or casio ps-20/ap31-38, they feel and sounds LIKE an accoustic piano, if he starts with digital, will that limit his potential? As I read somewhere said at this age, kid's finger grow with the piano playing-so weighted key is a must, and not accurate sound could hurt his hearing for sensitive sound?

If after 6mon-2+ years learn from teacher he shows serious potential, we could buy a traditional one. if not, then we keep the digital for 5+ more years. maybe.

2. If digital is a good substitute for beginner. is casio as good as yamaha?
I don't know how to play, so just pressed some buttons for accoustic, digital yamaha and casino and roland, etc, cannot tell/remember much difference. So I plan to go the value way.

Yamaha seems needs p120-$1200--Does yamaha has better features for beginner?

for $700-750, can get csio ps20, but I kind of like AP31/33's-$750-800 nice cabinet.

AP33/31's grand sampling is Stereo--I guess I mainly use the grand, others not stereo doesn't matter much to me?

but Line Out Mono--what's that mean?--if using speaker or connect to computer it's mono? Then I guess I seldom need to use that.

only 5 effects--I don't know what's use for that yet?

AP38 cost 1k, and I kind of think for >1k, maybe should consider accoustic at beginning.

Sorry for long posts and I'd appreciate your opionions/experience.

Thanks for your help.

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#658320 - 08/10/04 10:41 PM Re: accoustic or digital?
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8482
Loc: Ohio, USA
a digital piano (with weighted key action) should be good enough for a beginner. Yamaha is usually considered better digital piano maker than Casio, and for your money, P120 might be a good choice, which is a stage piano and many people like it because of its realistic key action and piano sound.

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#658321 - 08/11/04 10:30 PM Re: accoustic or digital?
Kenpcola Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/07/04
Posts: 86
Loc: Pensacola, FL
Have you tried suzuki digital piano SS90?
Seem to have good acoustic touch and nice sounding too. It has 30 instrument sounds.. kids like to hear different sounds from time to time. Yamaha P60 has only 5 instrument sounds. both price range around 750. Casio AP series key action seem quite close to acoustic one. At this point, if you are not sure, buy less expensive one unless you can waste few hundreds. Digital pianos do become obsolete very quickly as technology advances. And resale value will get lower in short time. I don't think I gonna spend more than 900 if I were you. All you need is decent piano sound and hammer weighted action keys(all digital pianos have it). If you can ,get progressive weighted one(like casio AP) rather than static one(e.g.casio PS).(left most keys are heavier than right most keys)
I don't think digital piano limits kid's ability.
But, if you really into piano playing, you should get acoustic. All Casio AP series have stereo.(spec. changed over time?). Difference is number of sounds, touch level selection, features and pedal numbers(2 versus 3).

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#658322 - 08/11/04 11:31 PM Re: accoustic or digital?
TheVibeRAIDER Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/27/02
Posts: 80
Loc: SF Bay Area
I realize my answer may not be of much help, but Bach never had a debate between digital and acoustic pianos and look where it got him!

Kidding aside, I just bought a Yamaha P-120 in July '04 after nearly 10 years with a Kurzweil PC88-MX (which I traded in.) I believe the P-120 will not become "technologically out-dated" as quickly as the PC88-MX due to the fact that the P-120 has much fewer bells and whistles. Whereas the Kurzweil PC88-MX admirably tried to be a MIDI controller and stage piano all-in-one, the Yamaha P-120 concentrates on the touch and main piano sounds. I will not say which is better, but I am glad to have tried both. However, in this case...

IMHO [/b]

...concentrate on the few piano sounds more than "gee-whiz effects" and "whatchamacallit multi-hundreds of voices." When I was learning piano, I could care less about experimenting other sounds. That came later. ;\)

In the end, nothing is better that a good-quality acoustic piano. Neither of my digital pianos are as good as an authentic acoustic when it comes to touch. Remember, some acoustic piano touch are better than others, and some could actually be worse than digitals if not prepped properly (see, more research for you! :p )

My dream is to replace my 1973 Baldwin Acrosonic with a nice upright, perhaps a nice grand, and have my P-120 next to it.
_________________________
1973 Baldwin Acrosonic (TRADED)
Kurzweil PC88-MX (SOLD)
Yamaha P-120
2013 Charles Walter 1520 QA.

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#658323 - 08/11/04 11:47 PM Re: accoustic or digital?
TheVibeRAIDER Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/27/02
Posts: 80
Loc: SF Bay Area
I was at Best Buy stores and saw the Casio PX-100 Privia. I thought it was a nice digital piano for its price of $499. I almost seriously bought it before settling with the Yamaha P-120.

I chose according to brand reputation in case I decide to sell my Yamaha P-120. Not saying bad about that Casio (other than the fact that the model is brand-new, thus unproven.) If I had that PX-100 Privia as a beginner, I would have been only too happy with it, knowing that it was springboard to some things to come! \:\)
_________________________
1973 Baldwin Acrosonic (TRADED)
Kurzweil PC88-MX (SOLD)
Yamaha P-120
2013 Charles Walter 1520 QA.

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#658324 - 08/12/04 07:41 AM Re: accoustic or digital?
forpiano Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 12
Loc: US estern
Thank you all for your replies. I ordered an ap31 yesterday for 800(with bench&software) as I like cabinetry and it has strings(while ps20 doesn't)--but ap31 doesn't have bright piano sound while ps20 has(what's that--another kind of piano sound?) Anyway, I guess I mainly use grand piano.
Also I tried ap38, yamaha, roland in store, but didn't see ps20. I didn't notice suzuki before.

I saw px-100 at bestbuy too and I liked it and think that's good enough, and by posts here I know ps20/ap will be much better.

As for resale value, I guess I'm going to keep it for 5+ years as I don't even have a keyboard.

I just borrowed the book Piano for dummies, and plan to get myself some info for music and to lure my 5 year old to have more interest.

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#658325 - 08/12/04 09:29 PM Re: accoustic or digital?
Kenpcola Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/07/04
Posts: 86
Loc: Pensacola, FL
Not a bad choice. Internal speakers seems kinda weak and amplifier is low in watt output. connect the piano to your stereo or home audio system or computer speaker system with higher watt output. You will hear better, clearer sounds.(sound system with seperate subwoofer and high range speakers). You don't really need bright piano. It is meant for live band playing. Too noisy for solo playing I think.

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#658326 - 08/13/04 04:59 PM Re: accoustic or digital?
nan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/12/04
Posts: 140
Loc: San Francisco
forpiano,

Just to let you know I spent three years on a Roland EP70 that cost $700 -- had 76 keys and claimed to be weighted. It is a miracle that I stuck with it. I knew there was a difference but now am amazed at what a poor instrument that was. I now have a high end digital with correct keyboard, and truly weighted keys. The model you got may be fine just be sure that when he takes lessons his keyboard does not hold him back and cause him any difficulty on a good piano.

The Piano for dummies is not particularly good -- it's ok to read but not really helpful for day to day learning/practicing. Much better is the Alfred series for beginners -- they are excellent.

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#658327 - 08/13/04 07:48 PM Re: accoustic or digital?
forpiano Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 12
Loc: US estern
kenpcola, thanks for your post. I'll try that when got it.

Nan, Thanks for your post. I want to get some basic idea/info before I go to class. I'll check the alfred series out. Because my 5 year old is kind of lazy(he doesn't like to write or draw etc), so with the piano maybe he can use his fingers a little bit more. I plan to bring him to lessons after 6 to save us some trouble/fights.

Also what do you mean by "when he takes lessons his keyboard does not hold him back and cause him any difficulty on a good piano."? because the difference of keys? And usually how long that could happen(after 3 mon, 6 mon or 1 year for weekly lesson)?

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#658328 - 08/14/04 04:37 PM Re: accoustic or digital?
nan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/12/04
Posts: 140
Loc: San Francisco
forpiano,

Hey, your 5 year is not lazy -- he's normal! Maybe he'll need encouragement from time to time. I am a believer in small inducements -- after a period of time he can have a toy or something special to reward him for his efforts/practicing which can get old fast.

What I meant by
"when he takes lessons his keyboard does not hold him back and cause him any difficulty on a good piano."? because the difference of keys? And usually how long that could happen(after 3 mon, 6 mon or 1 year for weekly lesson)?

is that I thought my keyboard was good enough and I didn't realize how bad it was until I practiced on my new digital and then went back to the old Roland. Then I knew how bad that old keyboard was. I did have trouble with the keys at lessons -- the acoustic had slightly larger keys but even more important it had much more play/depth to the keys (known as action). No question now that it held me back and was a mistake to stay on for such a long time.

But, for a young child those slightly smaller keys plus very light and easy action could be a plus. Still, I wouldn't recommend staying on it for too long because he won't get the development and feel in the fingers that he'll need on the acoustic or a very good digital. Can't say how long because I'm not a teacher or expert. Maybe a year at most?
(The sound on the old Roland was very good which I think somewhat fooled me into thinking the difference in the keys wasn't so important. Now I know that the action in the keys is essential.)

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#658329 - 08/14/04 07:35 PM Re: accoustic or digital?
forpiano Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 12
Loc: US estern
Nan, Thank you for your reply. I'm keep that in mind.

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