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#680674 - 08/11/07 03:10 PM Digital Piano Advice
elio Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/11/07
Posts: 3
Hi everyone-

I stumbled on this page after hours of looking for advice on buying a digital piano. I would appreciate any advice and tips from people who actually know what's what.

Basically, I got back into playing piano two years ago (so I'm a beginner, still playing the minuets, etc). I am going to med school in the fall, and there are no piano's available to play on. So, I am looking for a digital piano to buy. There are so many brands and types that I am sort of on information overloaded, and would appreciate some help.

I'm looking for a piano that has a close feel to an acoustic. I don't need any features like a computer, synthesizer, midi,etc, but just a plain piano that feels like a real one (ie, the key # and size and weight), sounds like a real one, and can do things just like a real one (multiple notes, peddle option). Based on this, I think I want an 88-key weighted piano, but after this I have no idea. I've heard alot about Yamaha P-series, and also some from casio. Any tips?
Thanks!
-Elio

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#680675 - 08/11/07 03:51 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
DragonPianoPlayer Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/12/06
Posts: 2368
Loc: Denver, CO
Hi Elio,

Welcome to the Forums. Information overload definitely is the description for this place! LOL.

It will help us give you suggestions if we could narrow the field down a bit. What price range are you looking at and do you want a console piano or a stage piano?

My guess is that you are looking for something under $1000 and more of a stage piano. However, there are limits on the pedal functionality of stage pianos that may mean that you want to look at a (relatively) lightweight console. Mostly, stage pianos are harder to find that have all three pedals and half pedaling. I would guess that you are still only using the sustain (damper) pedal and not half pedaling yet from the fact that you mention minuets.

You definitely want a weighted key piano, and most of these have 88 keys and are within the standard size of accoustic pianos.

From Casio, the most common models would be the PX110 or the newer PX200. These do not have half pedaling unless you have the stand and pedal bar. The PX200 is a heavier action than the PX110. I have the PX310 (which is a PX110 with more extras) and don't have a bit of a problem going from it to the grand piano I use at lessons.

I'm not as familiar with the Yamaha or other models, but there are many other posters who will chime in with their suggestions.

The biggest suggestion we can give you is get your list together and then try as many of them as possible. The way a piano feels and sounds is a very personal thing. What I may like is not always what someone else likes.

Good luck
Rich
_________________________

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#680676 - 08/11/07 06:21 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
WhiteBear Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/18/07
Posts: 161
Loc: Ontario, Canada
To start your journey, \:\) it would be helpful to decide upon:
-- your price range (or lack of thereof)
-- your preference for a cabinet piano or just a keyboard

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#680677 - 08/11/07 08:47 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
elio Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/11/07
Posts: 3
Hey!
Thanks for the quick replies. I'm looking for a stage piano (I know this now after googling the difference between stage and console) and think that I want to spend under $1000. Featurewise I think I just need the damper pedal as I am trying to integrate that into my piano playing. I googled the PX110 and saw that it's around $400 from amazon. I've read things about people swearing by Yamaha's sound though. If the casios are comprable, then this is good news given the price difference. Any insight?

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#680678 - 08/11/07 09:05 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8483
Loc: Ohio, USA
i don't know if Casio support half-pedal though (anyone can commnet?). if you could stretch a bit, you could get a Yamaha P140, which would be substentially better than Casio PX110, and furthermore supports half-padel (with FC3 pedal) and has better action and polyphony.

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#680679 - 08/11/07 09:19 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
DragonPianoPlayer Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/12/06
Posts: 2368
Loc: Denver, CO
The SP30 Pedal bar supports half-pedal. As this is a bar that is designed to go with the Casio CS65 stand, I'm not sure how you would use it by itself. The connector for the pedal bar is a propriatary connector, so it wouldn't be easy to connect a 1/4" TRS pedal to the unit for stand alone use.
_________________________

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#680680 - 08/11/07 09:32 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
MarkL Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/07
Posts: 728
Loc: Chicago Suburban
Casio, Yamaha and Roland all approximate an acoustic feel, but each is distinct. I'd try them all to see what you like. Starting at the bottom of the price range:

Casio CDP-100 <=$400
Casio PX-110 <=$500
Yamaha P70 <=$600
Casio PX-310 <=$700
Yamaha P140 <=$1000
Roland FP-4 <=$1300

I own Yamahas and they seem a bit lighter than the few Casios I've played. Not familiar with Roland or Kawai. All DPs are surprisingly high quality in my opinion, so it mostly depends what you like best. You might also look on ebay and craigslist for used DPs, but know what prices are reasonable and be prepared to wait awhile for the right deal. I purchased a used Yamaha P-90 in excellent condition for $370, but I had to wait almost a year to find that. Online stores that have good prices and deals are:
instrumentpro.com
music123.com
zzsounds.com
_________________________
Yamaha P90

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#680681 - 08/11/07 09:38 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
elio Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/11/07
Posts: 3
So the general consesus is that yamahas are better than casios? Dragonpianoplayer/Rich what do you think?

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#680682 - 08/11/07 09:58 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
Rosanna Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/08/07
Posts: 1360
Loc: San Francisco Bay area
I want to chime in and mention the Kawais. Having just purchased a digital in June, after doing much research and testing, I like the Kawai touch the best. The stage portable models are MP8, EP2, and I just notice the new MP5 on the Kawai site. I am not sure of all the prices but I believe the EP2 is about $1100. Unfortunately Kawais tend to be harder to find.
Link to Kawai USA site.
http://www.kawaius.com/main_links/digital/06_dpmain.htm

You may also consider buying a used, older models, e.g. Kawai MP8000, MP9000; Yamaha P200, P250, etc.

I find the touch of Casio heavier than the Yamaha. I find the Kawai touch by far the liveliest, but I like the Yamaha sound the best.

Good luck!
_________________________

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#680683 - 08/11/07 10:28 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
WhiteBear Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/18/07
Posts: 161
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I would suggest exploring Kawai MP5 and Roland FP4 as new nice KBs in about your price range.

A comparison of these keyboards by 99gnome HERE should be helpful.

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#680684 - 08/11/07 10:36 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
Matahari Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/07
Posts: 63
Loc: CT
Elio,
if there is any music store near you, it is best to try them yourself. Sound is very subjective imo. Given the same price (around $900, complete with 3 pedals) of Yamaha YDP213 vs Casio PX800, I'd choose Casio. In fact, I prefer the sound and feel of CDP100 and PX110 over the more expensive P70 (all of them have a sustain pedal).

For a stage piano under $500, px110 maybe your best bet, unless you can find a used digital that is still in very good condition.

peace,
Tika

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#680685 - 08/11/07 11:28 PM Re: Digital Piano Advice
DragonPianoPlayer Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/12/06
Posts: 2368
Loc: Denver, CO
I prefer the Casio at this price range. The Yamaha keyboards with a touch and sound that I like are all over $1000, sometimes well over.

Also, don't forget the PX200, it is priced about the same as the PX310, but it has an even heavier touch.

Sound and touch are all very subjective.

Good luck
Rich
_________________________

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