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#659350 - 09/17/04 04:56 PM Kawai - What do you think?
Cip Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/15/04
Posts: 2
I saw some Kawai digital pianos at the local store and was wondering what people thought about the quality and value of these:

Kawai CN390 $2000
Kawai CA5 $2500
Kawai CP115 $3000

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#659351 - 09/18/04 06:53 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
I like the Kawais - I was going to buy a CA5 but ended up with the CA9. Very happy with it. (Had it since June).

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#659352 - 09/18/04 10:04 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
Michigan Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 14
I was impressed with the Kawai's. When I had my choices narrowed down to two, kawai was one. I just liked the feel and sound of the technics a little better.

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#659353 - 09/27/04 11:41 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
fogwall Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 160
Loc: Sweden
Jazpianizt: How is the piano sound of the CA-9? I read somewhere that they have Steinberg's The Grand in their sound banks in this model. (not sure if this is true though)

This model also have string resonance modelling and a damper effect function. Are they convincing compared to an acoustic? Are they using the same technology as The Grand? (I'm myself a The Grand VSTi user)
_________________________
www.fogwall.com

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#659354 - 09/27/04 02:35 PM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
Yes, the damper effect and string resonance make a big difference, as does the "virtual technician" that lets you modify the sound and touch to your own preference.
I really like the feel of the wood keys and the hammer action in the Kawai, as well.
I don't know anything about Steinberg's The Grand. I think this is Kawai's own sampling of one of their concert grands. I think it's quite good. As far as being convincing compared to an acoustic, I can only compare it to my grand. While I enjoy playing the Kawai, and feel that it is a good practice instrument, I just can't imagine any digital piano really duplicating the sound and feel of an acoustic grand, at least with current technology.

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#659355 - 09/27/04 03:29 PM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
fogwall Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 160
Loc: Sweden
Thank you very much, jazpianizt. I really appreciate this as it is impossible today finding reviews on the net regarding this model. I did however finally find Kawai's German site which has mp3 demos of all the Kawai models.

I can recommend you visit my web page about digital pianos (prepare for a major yearly update within a week. I will, among other things, add some information regarding the CA9).
_________________________
www.fogwall.com

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#659356 - 09/27/04 07:06 PM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
Thanks, fogwall. I checked out your web page - a lot of good information there. It would be a good reference for anybody looking for a digital piano.
I'll check back later for your update.
You're right it has been hard to find information about the new Kawais. Not sure why that is, other than that they are so new. There seems to be so much interest in the Yamahas, I guess at least partially it's because they have better exposure in the marketplace.

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#659357 - 09/27/04 11:45 PM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
fogwall Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 160
Loc: Sweden
I'm glad you like the page.

I'm very eager testing the CA9 and include the results in the update. Could you please record this short midi test file and email me the result in mp3 format (without reverb but with damper effect and string resonance enabled)? I would appreciate it a lot.

niclas@fogwall.com
_________________________
www.fogwall.com

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#659358 - 09/29/04 08:22 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
Done. (emailed attachment)
Test was recorded with CA9 registrations set to factory default. Recorded to DAT via the CA9 analog outputs, converted to 128 kb MP3 with AudioCatalyst.
Let me know if you get it and it's OK.

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#659359 - 09/30/04 06:43 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
fogwall Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 160
Loc: Sweden
Hi. (I sent you a reply on email)

Could you please record it again but with damper effect and string resonance enabled? (set 10/10)

Thanks!
_________________________
www.fogwall.com

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#659360 - 09/30/04 02:51 PM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
Hi Fogwall,
Sent another attachment.

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#659361 - 09/30/04 03:34 PM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
PS Fogwall,
The second file was recorded with Damper Effect and String Resonance both at maximum (10/10).
If you don't hear what you expect - the effects are very obvious (and quite realistic) when it is played live. Not sure how they work when playing back a midi file. I've only used it for playing live, and haven't messed around with midi playback.
EDIT
I just tried an experiment, using the internal recorder on the CA9.
With the recorder running - lightly play a low C, and hold the key down. (No pedal) Play middle C, release the middle C, continuing to hold down low C.
Live, you hear the Low C continue to resonate after the middle C is released, as you would on a grand piano. Playing back the midi file, it's not there.

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#659362 - 09/30/04 10:21 PM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
fogwall Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 160
Loc: Sweden
OK! (I sent another email commenting this, before I read your comments here)

Yes, why are these effects only audible through the speakers and not through the output? Perhaps it is a setting you need to do?

An idea: You could connect from the headphone jack to the computer (or whatever), perhaps then it will be audible?
_________________________
www.fogwall.com

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#659363 - 10/01/04 06:17 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
The effects are audible through the speakers and headphone, as well as the audio output when the piano is played live. (The last file I sent you was recorded from the headphone output). The effect I described above (string resonance) appears only to work when you physically play the piano, not when the piano is played by a midi file.
EDIT
I have heard the samples on the Kawai website. In fact it was after hearing them that I decided to upgrade to the CA9. That's what they sound like played live. Don't know what happens with the midi file - might be worth a question to Kawai?

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#659364 - 10/01/04 08:02 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
fogwall Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 160
Loc: Sweden
Yes, that really sounds strange. I sent a mail to Kawai in Germany, describing this (and a link to this thread as well).
_________________________
www.fogwall.com

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#659365 - 10/01/04 08:09 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
I'll be curious to hear what they say. I'm no midi expert but perhaps it's a problem with the midi standard, since the damper effect and string resonance are Kawai technologies. Maybe those effects simply are not translated to the midi file.

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#659366 - 10/01/04 08:51 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
fogwall Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 160
Loc: Sweden
No, it has nothing to do with midi.

What seems weird to me (and a contradiction really) is that the effects are audible when using headphones but not when connecting from the headphones jack to the sound card. That should be impossible...
_________________________
www.fogwall.com

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#659367 - 10/01/04 09:04 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
No, you misunderstand me. There is no difference in what you hear through the speakers, headphones, or audio output (with the exception of various settings which control the different speakers).
The difference is what you hear playing live versus what you hear playing a midi file.

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#659368 - 10/01/04 03:49 PM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
fogwall Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 160
Loc: Sweden
Ok... Now I see. \:\)

It would be great if you could take up this issue with the dealer you bought it from. I'm not sure that Kawai in Germany will reply to me.
_________________________
www.fogwall.com

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#659369 - 10/01/04 04:25 PM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
Hi Fogwall,
Truth is, the dealer I bought it from would know nothing about this. Trust me on that.
I only use it for playing, not for playing back midi files, so it is not an issue with me. I don't really think it's even an issue - it's just the way the thing works. Of course, like I said, I'm no midi expert. If you hear from Kawai, please pass along the info.

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#659370 - 10/05/04 05:17 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
fogwall Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 160
Loc: Sweden
OK, I received a reply from Kawai in Germany. Apparently the damper effect and string resonance are disabled when triggered midi in.

They are thinking of updating the software to make it happen but no decision taken yet.
_________________________
www.fogwall.com

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#659371 - 10/05/04 05:55 AM Re: Kawai - What do you think?
jazpianizt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/22/04
Posts: 411
Thanks for the update.

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