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#680198 - 06/23/02 07:41 PM best digital piano without fancy features???
liaos Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/23/02
Posts: 9
Loc: Maryland
Hi! There:

I am a pianist who is looking for the best digital piano.

I have been playing over 2 decades, and care a lot about the touch/feel/action/sound of the digital piano.

However, most of the models out there offer many fancy features that I am not interested in at all, so I don't want to pay extra for the features that I don't need.

So, which is the best digital piano with outstanding, realistic touch and sound, yet doesn't have the bells and whistles that I don't need?

Thanks for your reply.

Sabrina

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#680199 - 06/28/02 03:19 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
Dave S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/03/02
Posts: 247
Loc: Houston TX
You did not say what your budget or purpose for this instrument would be.

I am a piano dealer who does not sale digital pianos, so I have no hidden agenda. If you were willing to spend around $3,000, I would strongly urge you to check out the new General Music Promega 3. This thing is a monster and quite easy to use. Here is a link www.generalmusic.com
These are built like tanks and I believe have the longest warranty in the business of digital pianos. Good luck to you. \:\)
_________________________
Dave S.- Piano Sales
Houston Piano Company- Houston, TX
Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann, Perzina, Taylor, Hobart M. Cable, Pearl River, Hardman, PianoDisc, Restored Steinway, and tons of used Kawai & Yamaha
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#680200 - 06/28/02 04:50 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
I've not played the Promega 3, but to me it seems to be everything Liaos is NOT looking for -- lots of bells & whistles.

I'd recommend the Roland RD700, the SRX-02 Concert Piano expansion board, a sturdy Quik-Lok stand, and some powered speakers such as the KRK V6's, V8's or the Mackie HD6 or HD8. You should be able to get the whole package for around $4000. If your budget is tight, there are less expensive speakers available and you may want to add the expansion board later.

Hope this helps.
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#680201 - 06/29/02 01:12 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
Dave S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/03/02
Posts: 247
Loc: Houston TX
Actually the Promega 3 is an extremely easy instrument to operate. It is designed for performance and simplicity. The controls on the front panel are clearly marked and self-expanatory (like eq & such). Don't let the knobs and faders fool you. They are there to make life easy! \:\)

The Roland RD 700 is indeed a nice instrument. \:\) However, the Promega is actually a bit easier to use and features a much more advanced method for capturing the complex sound of an acoustic piano than anything that has existed before. Quite amazing really.
_________________________
Dave S.- Piano Sales
Houston Piano Company- Houston, TX
Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann, Perzina, Taylor, Hobart M. Cable, Pearl River, Hardman, PianoDisc, Restored Steinway, and tons of used Kawai & Yamaha
World Crisis' Solved in Ten Minutes or Less!

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#680202 - 06/29/02 05:17 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
I'm anxious to hear the Promega's modeled acoustic piano. I'm somewhat skeptical though as I've never been particularly impressed with the sonic quality of the General Music products. I still think that it's more advanced than what Sabrina was looking for. I can't see how a hybrid PCM/acoustic modeling keyboard can be described as being without bells/whistles.
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#680203 - 06/29/02 06:42 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
Dave S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/03/02
Posts: 247
Loc: Houston TX
Steve you would love it! \:\) We both share a love for Roland products. The reason I am suggesting it is because the sound is awesome and the most accurate representation of a real grand that I have ever heard. It is also an extremely easy to use keyboard. The hardest thing about it is flicking the power switch on \:D . That is why I am recommending it so highly.

Being an acoustic piano snob I usually hate sampled digital pianos, and I would be the first to say that there still isn't anything like the real thing. Because I am so anal retentive about piano sound, if I were to play regulary in a live band the Promega would be my instrument of choice. Even with my extreme acoustic piano snobbery I still don't want to haul a 800 lb. grand around.

Incidently Steve, have you checked out many of the software synths? I've been messing around with Reason and have discovered my old love of synthesizer music again!!
_________________________
Dave S.- Piano Sales
Houston Piano Company- Houston, TX
Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann, Perzina, Taylor, Hobart M. Cable, Pearl River, Hardman, PianoDisc, Restored Steinway, and tons of used Kawai & Yamaha
World Crisis' Solved in Ten Minutes or Less!

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#680204 - 06/29/02 08:08 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
Dave,
I don't know you, but because of you I will look for an opportunity to play the Promega. Thanks for being patient with my skepticism. I'm currently fairly partial to my XV88 (with concert piano expansion board of course) at the moment, but there's always room for a new toy. ;\)

Out of curiosity, where have you seen one? I'm not even sure who's carrying General Music products these days?

As for the software synths, I have the B4 from Native Instruments as well as Stylus from Spectrasonics. I think Reason will be my next purchase. I've messed around with some others, but haven't yet found one that I'm all that crazy about. If you're into "pad" sounds, Spectrasonics is coming out with another virtual instrument called "Atmosphere" later this year. I messed around with a beta version and it's really incredible!!! Can't wait...
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#680205 - 06/29/02 10:23 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
netizen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/02/01
Posts: 1926
Loc: New York
Dave

Is the Pro Mega 3 available in the States? I read some rave reviews of it last fall, but I've yet to find it anywhere so I could try it out?? \:\(
_________________________
"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that
we are to stand by the president right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public."-- Theodore Roosevelt

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#680206 - 06/30/02 02:00 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
liaos Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/23/02
Posts: 9
Loc: Maryland
Hi! Guys:

Thanks for the information. I truly appreciate for your help! ^_^ I will see if I can get my hands on both the Roland RD700 and ProMega3 and try them out.

BTW, it seems that everyone recommends Roland, so is Roland the leader in the digital piano industry?

One more question though, both models seem to have great piano sound, but do they also play and feel and react like a piano when played? I need a digital piano that allows me to play my music expressively.... I've tried few lower end Roland products like HP137, but I am not satisfied with the sound and the touch.....it sounds too digital and loud to me..... I just hope to find a digital piano that can play like an acoustic piano.

Again, thanks. ^_^

Sabrina

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#680207 - 06/30/02 02:23 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
liaos Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/23/02
Posts: 9
Loc: Maryland
BTW, my current budget is $1500 for a good upright digital piano.

However, when I see the photos of these petite grand digital pianos such as (Viscount Concerto http://www.music123.com/Item/?itemno=33547 and Yamaha CLP-955), I must admit I am tempted by the elegant look. ^_^ Do you think it is worth it to pay almost twice as much and get a petite grand?

Has anyone have experience playing these grand pianos? And which one would you recommend?

Sabrina

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#680208 - 06/30/02 06:44 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
Dave S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/03/02
Posts: 247
Loc: Houston TX
Liaos,

You should go out and try out some of the lower priced Rolands with weighted action. In that price range they are hard to beat.

Being a self-professed piano snob, I would suggest that nothing is really like the real thing but if you can deal with the digital weighted actions you can certainly get by. \:\)
_________________________
Dave S.- Piano Sales
Houston Piano Company- Houston, TX
Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann, Perzina, Taylor, Hobart M. Cable, Pearl River, Hardman, PianoDisc, Restored Steinway, and tons of used Kawai & Yamaha
World Crisis' Solved in Ten Minutes or Less!

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#680209 - 06/30/02 06:53 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
Dave S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/03/02
Posts: 247
Loc: Houston TX
Netizen,
One of my friends has a Promega. I'll see if I can find out how he acquired it and from whom. \:\) \:\)

Steve Y, I'll have to try out the spectrasonics stuff. It certainly looks interesting. I also have the Native Instruments B4. Its the closest thing to the real B3 I have ever played! Also I have the Native Instruments Pro 52 and the PPG wave synth from Waldorf. Love them all! Right now Reason is my favorite. It is not as big of a cpu hog and since everything is integrated the timing on it is amazing. \:\)
_________________________
Dave S.- Piano Sales
Houston Piano Company- Houston, TX
Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann, Perzina, Taylor, Hobart M. Cable, Pearl River, Hardman, PianoDisc, Restored Steinway, and tons of used Kawai & Yamaha
World Crisis' Solved in Ten Minutes or Less!

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#680210 - 07/01/02 10:56 AM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
 Quote:
Right now Reason is my favorite. It is not as big of a cpu hog and since everything is integrated the timing on it is amazing.
What box are you running Reason on? OS? RAM? What do you typically use it for?
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#680211 - 07/01/02 11:04 AM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
 Quote:
BTW, my current budget is $1500 for a good upright digital piano.
However, when I see the photos of these petite grand digital pianos such as (Viscount Concerto http://www.music123.com/Item/?itemno=33547 and Yamaha CLP-955), I must admit I am tempted by the elegant look. ^_^ Do you think it is worth it to pay almost twice as much and get a petite grand?
You may or may not be satisfied with what is available for $1500. Dave and I have been steering you toward some straight-forward (no bells/whistles) professional keyboards. However, your budget would get you into the entry-level keyboards only. They're still professional keyboards, but not the best sound/feel, etc. But this is entirely relative as a $1200 keyboard purchased today sounds significantly better than a $4500 keyboard purchased five years ago.

Your comments about the Viscount seem to indicate that you're not entirely sure what you're looking for. I'd suggest that you just get out and play anything you can, although I suspect that your budget may limit you in the end.

As for brands, I'm somewhat biased in that I would prefer to stick with a manufacturer that has a strong reputation in the professional world. I'm somewhat distrustful of some of these lesser-known companies that are virtual no-shows in the professional arena. Manufacturers I'd feel good about would be: Roland, Yamaha, Korg and to a slightly lesser degree, Kurzweil, Alesis and General Music.
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#680212 - 07/01/02 11:29 AM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
Dave S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/03/02
Posts: 247
Loc: Houston TX
SteveY,

I am currently running Reason with Windows ME ( yeech & yuck) on an 850 mhz AMD Athlon and 512 mb of ram. I am considering upgrading my studio with a new dual processor Mac because Reason supports OS X and dual processor capability and I am sick to death of dealing with Windows!

I also have the Paris Pro (ever heard of it?) which is a high-end 24 bit audio recording package with some of the warmest sounding converters out there. Paris is also compatable with Mac OS 9 and I am waiting for support with OS X before making the big jump. After that, I will be free, ayeah hallelujah amen and amen from the bondage and scourge of Bill Gates!!! \:D \:D \:D
_________________________
Dave S.- Piano Sales
Houston Piano Company- Houston, TX
Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann, Perzina, Taylor, Hobart M. Cable, Pearl River, Hardman, PianoDisc, Restored Steinway, and tons of used Kawai & Yamaha
World Crisis' Solved in Ten Minutes or Less!

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#680213 - 07/01/02 02:02 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
liaos Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/23/02
Posts: 9
Loc: Maryland
Hi! Steve:

Actually, my budget is somwhat flexible, so I definitely will not get an entry-level piano if that's $1500 can only get.

However, I did find sites such as music123 and pianodepot that offer pianos that are $2000+ retail price but sell for only $1600+........

In fact, my roommate just got herself a Roland HP137, since she just starts to learn piano, I guess that is good enough for her.

However, I did notice that I can't play expressively on her piano, and the bass always, always sound louder than the right hand... plus, too much reverb/echo even though she has changed the setting to minimum reverb.

I'm not quite sure what piano I should get, but at least, I know what I don't want to get... ^_^

In the meanwhile, I agree with your point, and I will try to stick with the mainstream piano such Roland and Yamaha then.

Thanks.
Sabrina

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#680214 - 07/01/02 03:04 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
 Quote:
I am considering upgrading my studio with a new dual processor Mac because Reason supports OS X and dual processor capability and I am sick to death of dealing with Windows!
I also have the Paris Pro (ever heard of it?) which is a high-end 24 bit audio recording package with some of the warmest sounding converters out there. Paris is also compatable with Mac OS 9 and I am waiting for support with OS X before making the big jump.
If you're going to upgrade to a Mac, I'd consider waiting until the end of July. MacWorld is later this month and this is traditionally where the new Macs are introduced.
As for Paris, I was unaware that there was going to be OS X support from Emu. I was under the impression that Paris was dead.
Also, if you haven't already heard, you might be interested to know that Apple Computer bought Emagic today. Kind of makes me rethink whether I want to stay with Digital Performer...
_________________________
PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#680215 - 07/01/02 05:55 PM Re: best digital piano without fancy features???
Dave S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/03/02
Posts: 247
Loc: Houston TX
Thanks for the Mac tip Steve. I will upgrade from Windows (by taking my Windows equipped machine and throwing it lovingly in an acid pit or landfill) in the fall.

E-mu has indeed discontinued the Paris system. However, the Paris Users groups are as avid (rabbid too) as Mac users are. \:D Several of the users are continuing on with Paris developement. A friend of mine has even designed new hardware modules for the Paris MEC. It isn't quite dead yet. www.greatidea.com/paris

Emagic is an amazing program, but I would think that you would be better off to stay with the Digital Performer...no? Maybe that is because I'm lazy and hate to learn new software!
_________________________
Dave S.- Piano Sales
Houston Piano Company- Houston, TX
Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann, Perzina, Taylor, Hobart M. Cable, Pearl River, Hardman, PianoDisc, Restored Steinway, and tons of used Kawai & Yamaha
World Crisis' Solved in Ten Minutes or Less!

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