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#661956 - 12/19/07 11:50 PM Newbie = used DP questions
Marko2 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/19/07
Posts: 15
Loc: Portland, Oregon
Greetings everyone...

I'm an older acoustic guitar hack who has decided to get a Dp, and try my hands at the keyboard. I'm looking forward to this!

So, to me it's obvious I need an 88-weighted key setup. I've got a reasonable grasp on what real pianos sound like, have explored a bit the DP stuff out there that's new. I think I need something nice sounding(without headphones), so I can keep some inspiration. With limited budget, I'm trying to look used.

The one thing that has sort of jump back, is the varying amounts of keyboard noise(s) on some of these, when the power is OFF. Personally, I don't seem to mind the obvious noise on the downstrokes, but I'm finding the rattling/clunk/slap(it varies from unit to unit) on the upstroke of the keys as they hit the case, objectionable sound artifacts, which seem to bug my ears. Sort of ruins the music I guess. One inparticular, was a Clavinova(I forget which model) which had an astonishing noisy keyboard. Incredible.

So is this something normal to find in the used DP market? Plastic components which age too much? Fwiw, I recently played the Casio Privia 800, and it too had a fairly loud keyboard, as well as a Yamaha 625. So, I'm naturally gunshy.

I don't really know what to do. So, I'm looking used. For example, a Technics sx-pr305 in terrific shape, asking price $600. Then I question the polyphony differences between the older DP's , and the new ones. This one has 32. Now, my newbie view on used DP's is they do not hold their value very well. Yet my instincts tell me it is in the used DP's where I will find the best bang-for-buck, providing that is, noting goes south. Of course, Technics is no longer, but it has a decent onboard sound system. Saw a Baldwin Pianovelle too around same pricepoint.

I realize the my concerns about durability plastic keyboards(actions) may be to broad, or general, a question. Maybe not though. Am I worrying for nothing? Is minimizing loud keyboard clatter a DIY possibility?

All advice most welcome.

btw, thanks for the great website!, soooo much more civilized than some of the guitar sites I've visited!

Marko2

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#661957 - 12/19/07 11:55 PM Re: Newbie = used DP questions
Marko2 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/19/07
Posts: 15
Loc: Portland, Oregon
yikes, ...sorry for the typos!!

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#661958 - 12/20/07 09:17 AM Re: Newbie = used DP questions
Eternal Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/06
Posts: 1285
Loc: Posts: 80,372
You could've just fixed the typos using the "edit" button in the upper right hand corner (the little pencil on top of a sheet of paper).

As far as polyphony goes 32 sounds like a lot, but in a lot of cases it actually ends up being 16 (stereo sounds use up polyphony count for each channel). That still may seem plenty, but if you want to overlay some strings, you only end up with 8 . Now hold a pedal, and you'll start to see limitations.

Although to tell you the truth - I've played plenty on my 32 poly DP, and never really noticed any serious problems.

As far as key noise - I personally use headphones. But can see how the older a keyboard gets, the worse its action becomes.

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#661959 - 12/20/07 09:50 AM Re: Newbie = used DP questions
Marko2 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/19/07
Posts: 15
Loc: Portland, Oregon
 Quote:
Originally posted by Eternal:
You could've just fixed the typos using the "edit" button in the upper right hand corner (the little pencil on top of a sheet of paper).

As far as polyphony goes 32 sounds like a lot, but in a lot of cases it actually ends up being 16 (stereo sounds use up polyphony count for each channel). That still may seem plenty, but if you want to overlay some strings, you only end up with 8 . Now hold a pedal, and you'll start to see limitations.

Although to tell you the truth - I've played plenty on my 32 poly DP, and never really noticed any serious problems.

As far as key noise - I personally use headphones. But can see how the older a keyboard gets, the worse its action becomes. [/b]
Thanks for the pointer, and feedback.

I'm 4sure going to use headphones, and have some older killer Sennheisers that are around the ear, and somewhat open air, meaning you can hear what's going on around you. I'm just surprised with the extra noises coming from the keyboards, and the ones that seem to bug me are happening on the upstrokes of the keys as they return to original position. Perhaps most keyboard players just live with this, but I'm new to this, and these excessive keyboard noises, (after the notes have been played)hit me like if someone drags their fingers on the acoustic guitar too much...it pulls me away from the music and into the noise...

Anyways, just something I've been noticing as a newbie, as I search for the right DP for my situation... Thx for your viewpoint.

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#661960 - 12/20/07 10:42 AM Re: Newbie = used DP questions
Eternal Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/06
Posts: 1285
Loc: Posts: 80,372
I guess you can always turn up the volume. Also - how does your key noise perception on a digital compare to that on an acoustic?

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#661961 - 12/20/07 11:10 AM Re: Newbie = used DP questions
Gyro Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/24/05
Posts: 4533
Used digital pianos are the best value around.
Digital pianos are essentially computers,
so they follow computer-like pricing, that
is, used ones lose value fast, like a used
computer. For example, a 10 yr. old digital piano,
like a 10 yr. old computer, is worth only
a couple of hundred dollars. But whereas a 10 yr.
old computer can hardly get on the internet,
a 10 yr. old digital piano will be not much
different in performance from a new digital
costing thousands. That's great value there.

Moreover, as far back as the 1980's there
were already weighted-key digital pianos
that performed much like today's digitals.
But a digital from that far back, like
a 1980's computer, is essentially worthless
and you could get it almost for free.

Digitals should be very durable. I bought
my first digital, a Korg C-800 console,
new in a store in 1989. My neighbor has
it now, and it's still in perfect condition
after all these years. It has 16 note
polyphony, but it sounds better in many
ways than new digitals, because there is
less software bloat and its sound is
purer and cleaner as a result. I consider
the polyphony issue to be insignificant.
For example, the current Casio PX-800
has 128 polyphony and costs $900. The
PX-700 with older technology--32 polyphony--
but with many of the features of the PX-800
(for example, the 10,000 note song
recorder--that's almost 20 pages of
sheet music you can record and playback
instantly at the touch of a button, a big-time
feature) is about $700 online and $500
in some discount stores this Christmas.
I'd get the PX-700 and save $400. The
difference in polyphony is not significant,
in my view.

Keyboard noise is normal with digitals,
Acoustic pianos have it too, it's just that
you can't hear it because you can't turn off
the sound on an acoustic.

Technics were quality digitals and should
be a good buy. The Baldwin digital should
also be good. I've never played a bad
Baldwin acoustic piano, and I'd expect
their digitals to be similarly good.

When you're shopping for used digital pianos,
it's a buyer's market and you can really stick
it to the seller. The number of piano
players in the general population is
small, so any used piano is going to be
hard to sell. No one lines up to buy
used digital pianos, and a pawn shop would give
the seller almost nothing for it, so
he's really at your mercy. $600 would be generous
for a used Technics, when you can get
a new Casio PX-700 for less than that; the
seller should be glad to get $300 for it.

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#661962 - 12/20/07 11:26 PM Re: Newbie = used DP questions
Marko2 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/19/07
Posts: 15
Loc: Portland, Oregon
What a great post!

Thanks to to you both for the replies. Appreciate having things spelled out!

cheers!

Marko2

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