Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright?

Posted by: Karnevil

Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 01:22 PM

Hi!

What are you thoughts on the playability/key action, sound, note-seperation/clarity, detail/nuances concerning the AvantGrand N2, and a similar priced Yamaha upright, acoustic piano?

Piano will be used for both classical stuff and jazz.

Thanks! smile
Posted by: ChrisA

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 01:31 PM

For playing live or for recording?

No matter how good the DP, what you hear still comes from speakers. No way around that. But if you are talking about recording then both are heard through speakers and the acoustic piano looses it's advantage.

That said, I don't plan any live performances in my house and an upright can't work headphones. For me an acoustic piano is totally unpractical.
Posted by: EssBrace

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 01:43 PM

Just a personal preference but I would have the AG over ANY acoustic upright. An upright sounds like an upright and has an upright's action (even at its best, completely inferior to a grand's). The AG sonically emulates a grand and has a grand's action. Sonically, I would rather have a digital emulation of a grand than a top-notch acoustic upright. You have to remember that an upright was the digital of its day really...someone realised that many people could not afford a grand piano and could not physically accommodate one so the upright was developed. The upright piano was not the result of a quest for improved playability, volume, expressiveness, dynamics etc because in all these respects it is inferior to a grand piano. The upright was born out of a massive set of compromises.

Steve
Posted by: Salvador

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 02:28 PM

Originally Posted By: EssBrace
upright was the digital of its day really...

Steve


Interesting perspective, Steve. When I come to think about, I agree with this analogy smile
Posted by: John_B

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 06:02 PM

Karnevil, if you post your question in the 'Digital Pianos - Synths & Keyboards' you will get answers advocating the N2.

If you post it in the 'Piano Forum' the majority of replies will probably be the other way round (unless you need to play quietly or with headphones).
Posted by: Melodialworks Music

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 06:11 PM

Originally Posted By: EssBrace
Just a personal preference but I would have the AG over ANY acoustic upright.

Steve


+ 1
Posted by: dewster

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 06:28 PM

Buy a real studio piano, there is absolutely no comparison. Yamaha makes really nice studio pianos.

The AvantGrand sound technology is really mediocre for what you are paying.
Posted by: sucroid

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 06:48 PM

Originally Posted By: dewster
Buy a real studio piano, there is absolutely no comparison. Yamaha makes really nice studio pianos.

The AvantGrand sound technology is really mediocre for what you are paying.


Which DP has better sound technology than the AvantGrand?
Posted by: John_B

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 06:51 PM

For the price of an N2 you can probably get something like a Yamaha YUS5 or a Kawai K8 (at least in the UK).
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 07:24 PM

Originally Posted By: John_B
For the price of an N2 you can probably get something like a Yamaha YUS5 or a Kawai K8 (at least in the UK).

The N2 retails for $15K while the YUS5 retails for $19.7K and its silent version (which is more apple to apple comparison to the N2) retails for $24.4K. The Kawai K8 retails for $18.2K as compared to the N2 retail of $15K.

So it's hardly comparable pricing and any of those 3 uprights cost a lot more than the N2.
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 07:29 PM

I played the N2 (for the 2nd time) the other day and just don't think it's worth the premium over the regular CLP's. The action felt like that of a digital piano and the sound was little different. It's not even close to my own 10 year old U1 which cost me a fraction of the price. Compared to a similarly priced acoustic upright it only makes sense if you need to be able to play through headphones.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 07:37 PM

The acoustic uprights aren't worth buying, and you'll have a very difficult time selling one if your plans ever change...they are worth very little second hand.

Not only that, but the acoustic uprights will need tuning.

The Avant Grand N2 is your best possible choice...it sounds a heck of a lot better than any acoustic upright, and the feel of the action is far superior.

Snazzy
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 07:44 PM

Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer
The acoustic uprights aren't worth buying, and you'll have a very difficult time selling one if your plans ever change...they are worth very little second hand.


Really?

I have owned several over the years and managed to sell every single one for more than I payed for it. Why not spend $15k on an N2 and then see what it's worth in 5 years time? You might be dissapointed.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 07:54 PM

The N2's grand keyboard action is superior to almost all uprights's keyboard action in the first place, since it's a real grand action. You can't even find a grand action in any acoustic upright except for a very few latest and most expensive uprights. So it's not even a debate that the N2 has the advantage here on the action, and that's half of the advantage already (if you give the action 50% weight and sound the other 50%).

The only debatable point is on the sound. Yeah, the N2 is speaker sound, but it's no ordinary small pathetic stereo sound system like most other DPs. It's a 4-channel, 10-speaker, 2-transducer and 12-amplifier sound system, on top of a high quality 4-channel CFIIS concert grand sampled sound to boost. So whether this is inferior to an acoustic upright sound or not is debatable and a personal opinion. I wouldn't say one has a clear advantage over the other.

There are many other things worth considering that give the N2 a clear advantage: volume control, always in tune, no tuning cost, no voicing cost, no humidity control need, lighter weight, MIDI, USB, recording, playback, more sounds, direct line out for further amplification.
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 07:59 PM

I don't think it's as simple as splitting action and sound 50/50.

The action is being used to control the sound. So if the the sound itself is artificial then the action makes no real difference. This is what I felt when I played the N2 (and the N3). I coudn't equate the feel to that of a grand piano because what I was hearing was not a grand piano.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:01 PM

At one time, uprights were worth buying...today, with such fantastic digitals like the N2, with superior action,AND sound, people are more interested in the latter.

The only acoustics worth investing in today would be grands.

The N2 would sell much quicker than an upright...hardly anybody buys uprights anymore....the sound isn't so hot compared to a digital of the same price, and you've got the cost of tuning...if I were going to buy a piano I HAD to tune, it wouldn't be an upright...it would be a grand...they hold their value much, much better...I know I could sell my old Steinway for far more than it cost new, but an older upright piano...sometimes they are hard to even give away.

Snazzy.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:03 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer
The acoustic uprights aren't worth buying, and you'll have a very difficult time selling one if your plans ever change...they are worth very little second hand.

Really?

I have owned several over the years and managed to sell every single one for more than I payed for it. Why not spend $15k on an N2 and then see what it's worth in 5 years time? You might be dissapointed.

This is only because there's been no serious and viable competition to the acoustic uprights in the previous years that you owned your uprights, so you might have been able to luckily enjoy this advantage until now. But landscape has now changed with the coming of serious and viable alternatives such as the N2, so you'll no longer be able to enjoy this advantage anymore in the years to come. The evidence is in such thread as this one where people are beginning to question whether they should get a DP such as the N2 over an acoustic upright now.

In as much as questioning how much the N2 will be worth 5 years from now, I suspect that the picture for acoustic uprights' value will be even grimmer 5 years from now and will probably be worse than the N2, considering that serious competition has now arrived and is here to stay and will only get better.
Posted by: sucroid

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:09 PM

I have been asked in the last two years by two different people if I wanted an old upright for free. I took only one for my folks because that's all the space they had. And I had to pay $400 to move that thing!
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:13 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.


So if the the sound itself is artificial then the action makes no real difference. This is what I felt when I played the N2 (and the N3). I couldn't equate the feel to that of a grand piano because what I was hearing was not a grand piano.


Actually when you play the N2, you are hearing the sound of a concert grand...when you play an upright, you hear the sound of that instrument.

The action in the N2 is from a grand...far superior to that of an upright.

Sound-wise, the upright takes a back seat to either an N2 or an N3...I had the latter, and it blows away any upright I've played, and as a working pro, I've played quite a few.

There will be those who prefer an acoustic...their numbers get smaller every year, while those who buy digital pianos are increasing.

Snazzy
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:15 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
I don't think it's as simple as splitting action and sound 50/50.

The action is being used to control the sound. So if the the sound itself is artificial then the action makes no real difference. This is what I felt when I played the N2 (and the N3). I coudn't equate the feel to that of a grand piano because what I was hearing was not a grand piano.

So you're saying no matter how great the action is, you'll always give the sound 100% weight. That's just your personal opinion. I see most other people value the action as much as the sound, if not even more, especially when it comes to a DP as a practice instrument, and especially those who ultimately want to get an acoustic grand later on but want the grand action right now, today, even before they own an acoustic grand.
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:17 PM

Digital pianos have been around for quite some time now, certainly far longer than I have been buying and selling uprights. The last one I sold was 6 months ago.

People buy acoustic pianos because they fall in love with them. They are individual and each one has it's own distinctive character. Over on the piano forum you will hear of folks who say that their piano 'spoke to them'. It's got nothing to do with finding that perfect sound or action. That doesn't really exist.

I am afraid you can't mention technology and resale value in the same breath. Everyone knows that whatever they buy now will be worthless in years to come. We already know that the sampling technology used in the AvantGrand is on the way out. Why waste the money.

If you like the N2 then buy one second hand in a couple of years. You'll get it for nothing.
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:20 PM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
So you're saying no matter how great the action is, you'll always give the sound 100% weight.


No, just that you can't separate the two. Each depends on the other. What you hear with the N2 is a recording of a grand piano which is hardly the same thing.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:20 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
I played the N2 (for the 2nd time) the other day and just don't think it's worth the premium over the regular CLP's. The action felt like that of a digital piano and the sound was little different. It's not even close to my own 10 year old U1 which cost me a fraction of the price. Compared to a similarly priced acoustic upright it only makes sense if you need to be able to play through headphones.

You can argue all you want about the sound aspect, and I would still respect your opinion. But once you've said that "the N2 action felt like that of a digital piano", I no longer respect your opinion because obviously you either don't know what you're talking about, or you're so severely biased that your skewed opinion no longer has any credibility.

You're the first and only poster I've heard on this forum who said such a thing about the N2 action. I've heard from many other posters on this forum who may still prefer the acoustic sound better, but nobody ever disputed the action of the N2 to be NOT real grand action and only like that of a DP. That's because it's a fact (not just an opinion) that it is real grand action in there.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:23 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.


If you like the N2 then buy one second hand in a couple of years. You'll get it for nothing.






Yes, or buy a U1 and, in a couple of years, have to pay some one to haul it away...most music stores won't carry upright pianos any more...grands will always be around, although their numbers have been, and will continue to decrease as well.

A friend of mine sold a lot of digital pianos by having one set up next to an upright.

The only advantage an upright has over a grand is that it makes a smaller carbon footprint when it burns. wink

Snazzy
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:28 PM

I'm not remotely biased. It's just an observation based on years of playing the piano, both acoustics and digitals.

What exactly is it you feel that you can achieve with the N2 action that you couldn't with the action of a comparably priced Yamaha upright?
Posted by: MarcoM

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:40 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
What exactly is it you feel that you can achieve with the N2 action that you couldn't with the action of a comparably priced Yamaha upright?


and to add a data point to the discussion on just how necessary a 'grand' action really is, check out these video of Volodos' version of the Turkish March:

played on an upright...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5bFakdpY7k

played on a clavinova cgp-1000 (which if I'm not mistaken has an NW action.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U54f_upaOaE
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 08:55 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
I am afraid you can't mention technology and resale value in the same breath. Everyone knows that whatever they buy now will be worthless in years to come. We already know that the sampling technology used in the AvantGrand is on the way out. Why waste the money.

Here comes that usual lame double standard again of labeling DPs as "technology" just for the sake of making the "resale" argument.

First of all, you can label DPs as "technology" all you want. There's nothing wrong with that. It's actually a good thing. And yes, technology evolves and every few years newer technology comes out. But do you see people ever stop buying newer cell phones or smart phones or laptops or HD TVs or BlueRays DVDs or the latest iPad, etc? People still snap them up like candies and nobody sits back and said "Oh, I'll wait a few more years until the next best thing comes along." If you're already of that mentality, you'll never buy any "technology" item in the first place, so you're not a viable consumer to be considered so who cares about those people in the first place? We're talking about people who's ready and want to make a purchase for the latest and best thing here. The bottom line is that technology is a good thing, and its resale value is not a consideration people worry about.

And even if it were to some people, when you invoke technology for the sake of arguing the resale value, you have to compare apple to apple and not play dirty by using the double standard. And the double standard here is playing the old DP vs new DP resale argument card, while what we're really debating here DP vs AP.

If you're going to argue that the resale of a DP will be worth nothing in a few years, why don't you also come out and say that this is because people will want to buy A NEW DP, and not because they want to buy a new acoustic, much less an acoustic upright? So what does this have to do with the DP vs AP debate? It's funny because the only thing you're confirming here unwittingly is that the more desirable product a few years from now IS GOING TO BE the newer DP. If it's not today's DP, it's sure as heck is not going to be today's acoustic upright either.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 09:20 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
What exactly is it you feel that you can achieve with the N2 action that you couldn't with the action of a comparably priced Yamaha upright?

Not sure why you have to ask about this since you're a piano teacher. I've heard many piano teachers recommend their students to move to a grand from an upright when they get advanced enough because it's a universally accepted opinion that the grand action is superior to the upright action.

But if you have to ask anyway, maybe as a test, it's because of the fact that the hammers on the grand action are horizontally aligned, so they can return to their rest position faster and naturally by gravity (without needing spring mechanism to force this to happen as in the upright). This enables the design of the double escapement mechanism on the grand piano to allow faster repetition of notes without having to fully releasing the keys.

And although your question is specifically about the N2 action, I gave you an answer for acoustic grand action in general, because the N2 has the acoustic grand action. So it's not just specific to the N2. If one agrees that acoustic grand action is better than acoustic upright action in general, then by default, the N2 is better because it has the grand action.
Posted by: 10fingers

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 09:37 PM

re: Dewster +1
Posted by: FogVilleLad

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 10:48 PM

snazzy and Volusiano, I agree with you, but can understand where ChrisH is coming from. When playing a DP we're always playing a recording of a piano. When listened to thru studio-quality 'phones - or perhaps a great sound system - that can be an enjoyable experience; but it's not the same thing as playing the actual piano. For ChrisH, this is an unsurmountable barrier.

This issue, IMO, is not resolvable. If people don't like something which isn't completely genuine, there's nothing which can be done about it.
Posted by: Dave Ferris

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/04/10 11:29 PM

.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 03:38 AM

To some people, pure acoustic sound is everything, and I totally respect that. But to many others, sound is only part of the equation and many other things are very important, too. Otherwise, the OP would have not bothered with his question here, and instead would have just gone straight to the (acoustic) Piano forum and asked for suggestion on which acoustic piano to buy.

So the heart of the DP vs AP debate is not about sound alone. It's about why, even at the expense of having not as good the sound, it's still an attractive option to people to make them want to consider the DP. And on top of that, a newer emerging question is when is the DP going to become "good enough" to be a viable alternative to the AP? And more specifically here, to the upright AP.

So with these questions in mind, I'd have to say that Yamaha has finally delivered a viable alternative in the N2 as a serious contender to acoustic uprights in its price range. It trumps the acoustic upright on almost everything, except maybe for sound. It's simple as that.

So the only question is what is more important to the OP? Sound and sound only? Or everything else (with pretty decent sound, mind you, just not the ultimate sound)?

And if people say "Oh, the N2 is way overpriced and expensive for what it can deliver as a DP". I'd say "Really? And $15K acoustic uprights are not expensive, too?" As least we know future DPs can only go down in price and only get better. Can the same be said about upright AP? Last I heard, people were worried about acoustic price increases coming up in the year.

And if people want to wait for a better/cheaper DP, more power to them and wait. Wait 3 to 5 years. Then wait 3 to 5 more years if you want. At least they have that option. Just don't use that as an excuse to buy an acoustic today. Buy an acoustic today because you want to buy an acoustic. Not because you're afraid that technology will always get better and cheaper and you don't want to be cheated by technology. How are you ever going to be cheated by something that you never plan to wait around to reap its benefits in the first place? You'd only be cheating yourself for using that excuse.
Posted by: theJourney

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 03:43 AM

Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris
Quote:
When playing a DP we're always playing a recording of a piano. When listened to thru studio-quality 'phones - or perhaps a great sound system - that can be an enjoyable experience; but it's not the same thing as playing the actual piano. For ChrisH, this is an unsurmountable barrier.

This issue, IMO, is not resolvable. If people don't like something which isn't completely genuine, there's nothing which can be done about it.



Yeah, that's how I feel about it too.
...
There's something connected to the essence of music making, at least for what I do, when an Acoustic piano is involved. You throw the electronics into the mix and it just changes everything.

BTW, one of the nicest pianos I played a few years back was an upright. It was either a Bechstein Concert 8 or 10. In any case, it was unlike any upright I'd ever played before. 3hearts Of course with what you'd pay for it, you could probably get close to a new C7 on a great deal. Steinway makes a great but expensive upright too.


+1

Those who say that they would prefer for an acoustic-piano like playing experience a digital to any upright have probably not played a really nice upright from Grotrian, Seiler, Steingraeber, etc.
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 04:56 AM

Volusiano, you are completely missing the point in every way.

On resale value: Of course that won't stop people buying technology, I never said that. I was just pointing out that changes in technology render old tech obsolete in no time at all. This means that anything older than a few years becomes worthless. In contrast the acoustic piano has not changed all that much. A 30 or 40 year old acoustic (upright or grand) will still fetch good money as long as it has been looked after and will continue to play perfectly well for years to come. Don't take my word for it, just take a look on ebay.

The grand like action seems to me to be nothing more than a gimmick. What's it for? You are playing a digital piano so why do you need the action of an acoustic piano? The piano action is a complicated thing with many moving parts. It's built the way it is because you need to be able to strike real strings with real hammers. It's not perfect on either a grand or an upright, it's just necessary. You could argue that the action of a regular DP is far superior because you can do away with all those parts.

The point about action is that it is used to control the sound. When I play any acoustic piano I will use the action to make it sing, roar, weep, sparkle etc. I can repond to the sound with subtle changes in touch. That's what music is all about, not repeating notes as fast as possible. The only time I really think about action is if it stops me doing what I want with the sound or if there is somethng wrong with it. This only happens on old pieces of junk which are as likely to be grands as uprights.
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 05:02 AM

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and here is mine on the original question:

It all depends on what you want to do with your piano.

If you have neigbours who would be disturbed by your piano playing then buy the N2.
If you spend most of your practice time playing silently through the night then buy the N2.
If you intend to record everything you play then buy the N2.
If you are a sucker for the latest tech and want to impress your mates with space age looks then buy the N2.

Of course you can do all this with a much cheaper DP.

If on the other hand you simply want to enjoy making music at the piano then buy a YUS3 (which I assume is around the same price as the N2).
Posted by: theJourney

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 05:21 AM

Or...do all of the above and buy a YUS 3SG hybrid silent piano...which is a about a 1000 euros more expensive than the N2.
However, when you consider that you are getting an entire top of the line acoustic piano in addition to the digital functions for only 1000 euros then you realize what an incredibly good value it is in comparison to the very overpriced N2.
Posted by: Gerry Armstrong

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 05:33 AM

Or you could do what I've done - I have an acoustic upright piano AND a digital piano.

I've never understood why so many people think it's an either or question. I'm happy to put up with the issues that come with both so I can have the advantages of both.
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 05:41 AM

Originally Posted By: Gerry Armstrong
Or you could do what I've done - I have an acoustic upright piano AND a digital piano.


Same here.
Posted by: EssBrace

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 05:44 AM

Yes I agree but why would someone with this mind set want to contribute to this particular forum? I mean if your starting position is that DPs are not a worthy means of expressing yourself musically it is just mischief to be on here stimulating artificial debate because there is nothing that will ever persuade him.

Steve
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 05:54 AM

EssBrace, I assume you are talking about me?

If this forum is all about the virtues of DP's then what's the point in the original question?

Someone asked:

'Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright?'

For me the answer is very clear, I would choose the upright anytime. That doesn't mean I have anything against DP's. I own a DP and it has been extremely useful over the years. IMO Yamaha should focus on making great DP's and great acoustics rather than trying to merge the two.
Posted by: Karnevil

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 05:54 AM

Hi, OK, it seems like this thread develloped into a rather heated argument..

I forget to mention in the original post that this piano would be used for practicing, so a realistic keyboard action is crucial. Also, I play a lot of jazz, using harmonically dense/complex chords etc., and playing on a typical stage piano like CP300, RD700GX is just very unsatifying for me. I just can't connect with the instrument I'm playing. So far, digitals have disappointed me, but I was hoping that the N2 would actually be a viable alternative. My biggest problem, is that I usually will get impressed by the "next big thing", than after a while and playing the digital instrument some, all the flaws and lack of real connection and subtle details (compared to a acoustic piano) becomes more and more annoying.

I see here that there are two very seperate and different views of the N2. I will try to find one, and try it out myself. Thanks for the advices. Yeah, maybe I should ask the question in the AP forum too.. smile Thanks


Posted by: John_B

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 05:57 AM

With all due respect to Karnevil, this thread is really a nonsense.

If the OP had wanted a balanced view he/she would have asked the question in the Piano forum [Edit] or Pianists forum. As it is he/she asked in the Digital forum and got the answer he/she wanted.
Posted by: EssBrace

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:03 AM

Well in terms of technical tone generation the Yamaha CP1 family is better than AG, as is Roland Supernatural sound engine found in several of their more expensive models. But in terms of the playing experience (note - NOT through headphones), the AG must be some way ahead due to its tactile response system that aims to recreate the physical cabinet and soundboard resonance of an acoustic piano.

Steve
Posted by: theJourney

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:08 AM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
Originally Posted By: Gerry Armstrong
Or you could do what I've done - I have an acoustic upright piano AND a digital piano.


Same here.


Me too.
Posted by: John_B

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:20 AM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
Originally Posted By: John_B
For the price of an N2 you can probably get something like a Yamaha YUS5 or a Kawai K8 (at least in the UK).

The N2 retails for $15K while the YUS5 retails for $19.7K and its silent version (which is more apple to apple comparison to the N2) retails for $24.4K. The Kawai K8 retails for $18.2K as compared to the N2 retail of $15K.

So it's hardly comparable pricing and any of those 3 uprights cost a lot more than the N2.


I know you are a militant AvantGrand proponent but please give me some credit for not dreaming up prices off the top of my head.

In the UK N2 prices are not displayed on websites but in a local store it is priced at £8,000 (inc VAT, our sales tax) which, at the current exchange rate, is roughly equivalent to $12,000.

The YUS5 is advertised by a well known online/physical Yamaha supplier at £8,200.

The Kawai K8 is advertised on a different well known piano supplier's website as £9,200 "Phone for our price" - which implies the final price might well be nearer £8,000.

(The Kawai K6 is advertised on the same website as £7,400 (2 pedal version) "Phone for our price")

I note that the prices you use for the Yamaha and Kawai the same as manufacturer's suggested retail prices in Piano Buyer. Not what a buyer can actually expect to pay.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:25 AM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
Volusiano, you are completely missing the point in every way.

On resale value: Of course that won't stop people buying technology, I never said that. I was just pointing out that changes in technology render old tech obsolete in no time at all. This means that anything older than a few years becomes worthless. In contrast the acoustic piano has not changed all that much. A 30 or 40 year old acoustic (upright or grand) will still fetch good money as long as it has been looked after and will continue to play perfectly well for years to come. Don't take my word for it, just take a look on ebay.

Chris, I totally get your point, and I think you totally didn't get MY point. I'm saying that although your point might have been valid for the last few hundred years, it won't be valid anymore very quickly because something else has finally arrived that's going to make the acoustic piano obsolete very quickly.

I have a very expensive Minolta SLR film camera that is worthless today because digital SLRs with very high resolution have finally arrived in the market and made my camera worthless. When digital cameras just came out, they only had the cheaper point-and-shoot varieties with built-in lenses that was no competition to the full-size professional SLR cameras. But as soon as the digital SLRs came out with sufficient resolution to enable full-size photographs to be printed that look just as good as the film camera, and on top of that, enabled full use of interchangeable SLR professional lenses, it marked the death of film based SLR cameras almost overnight because finally, a viable alternative has arrived. The digital SLR camera killing the film SLR camera is a perfect analogy to make here. And I would say the (still analog) keyboard action is equivalent to the still analog SLR lenses. Once it came out, do you see anybody buying film SLR cameras on eBay anymore? Wait another 3 to 5 years and maybe you'll see the same demise of the acoustic upright happening, if not already.

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
The grand like action seems to me to be nothing more than a gimmick. What's it for? You are playing a digital piano so why do you need the action of an acoustic piano? The piano action is a complicated thing with many moving parts. It's built the way it is because you need to be able to strike real strings with real hammers. It's not perfect on either a grand or an upright, it's just necessary. You could argue that the action of a regular DP is far superior because you can do away with all those parts.

First of all, it's a total off-the-point distraction to ask why you need the action of an acoustic when you're playing a digital. You only do this because you can no longer argue that the N2 action is not the same (and inferior as implied) to the acoustic. So all of a sudden, you want to make the tradition acoustic action look bad to distract from not being able to say that the N2 action is inferior. It's as if, had the DP sound somehow can be 100% the same as an acoustic and nobody can tell the difference from a blind test, you might have posed the same question about the sound just to distract from the argument/comparison. All of a sudden, I might hear you say "You can argue that the sound of a regular DP is far superior..." by just replacing the word "action" with the word "sound" from your last sentence above.

Having said that, there is actually a new camp of thought thinking along the same line, that digital action doesn't need to mimic acoustic action and digital sound doesn't need to mimic acoustic sound. But that's not the discussion we're having here. The real discussion here is whether the state of the best DP right now is a close enough copy of the upright AP or not? So superiority is judged by how close the copy can be made in sound and action along with other important attributes.

As for calling the acoustic action complicated and not ideal and made only as a necessary design based on the acoustic layout of how it is needed to be made strike the strings, etc. I won't argue with you on that. The only comment I will make is that it's like a standard that's once already established, people are trained on it and you can't make people unlearn what they learned, no matter how efficient a new design can be. Such an example is the Qwerty keyboard. You don't see any computer manufacturers deviate from this on their new PCs or laptops, do you? So it is what it is, an established standard that's going to be hard to change. Otherwise, if you want to argue about the action, why not stop there and not argue about the keyboard layout and what else have you as well?

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
The point about action is that it is used to control the sound. When I play any acoustic piano I will use the action to make it sing, roar, weep, sparkle etc. I can repond to the sound with subtle changes in touch.

And the point I want to make about the action on the N2 is that you can use it to control the sound just the same way you do on an acoustic. You can still make it sing and roar and weep and sparkle all you want just the same and you won't feel any difference as if you played a grand acoustic Yamaha piano. Why can't you? It's the exact same action that Yamaha uses for their acoustic grand pianos.

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
That's what music is all about, not repeating notes as fast as possible.

Who said that music only is about repeating notes as fast as possible? Not me. You asked me what the difference is that made the grand action superior to the upright action and I just simply answered your question. If you don't care for this difference, then that's your opinion. Obviously many others think differently, enough for manufacturers to go to a lot of trouble to design the double escapement feature into the modern grand action. Enough for ALL manufacturers to follow suit and make it a standard on the grand piano. Enough to make a few manufacturers of very high end uprights to go to great lengths to mimic this escapement functionality into their products, despite it being not an easy and natural thing to do on an upright because they get no help from gravity to do it. Enough to make most piano teachers to want their students to upgrade from uprights to grand pianos.

Double escapement is not the only difference, albeit the main one. The grand action also tends to have longer keys, which enables better pivot positioning of the keys for better nuances in control as well.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:39 AM

Originally Posted By: John_B
Originally Posted By: Volusiano
Originally Posted By: John_B
For the price of an N2 you can probably get something like a Yamaha YUS5 or a Kawai K8 (at least in the UK).

The N2 retails for $15K while the YUS5 retails for $19.7K and its silent version (which is more apple to apple comparison to the N2) retails for $24.4K. The Kawai K8 retails for $18.2K as compared to the N2 retail of $15K.

So it's hardly comparable pricing and any of those 3 uprights cost a lot more than the N2.


I know you are a militant AvantGrand proponent but please give me some credit for not dreaming up prices off the top of my head.

In the UK N2 prices are not displayed on websites but in a local store it is priced at £8,000 (inc VAT, our sales tax) which, at the current exchange rate, is roughly equivalent to $12,000.

The YUS5 is advertised by a well known online/physical Yamaha supplier at £8,200.

The Kawai K8 is advertised on a different well known piano supplier's website as £9,200 "Phone for our price" - which implies the final price might well be nearer £8,000.

(The Kawai K6 is advertised on the same website as £7,400 (2 pedal version) "Phone for our price")

I note that the prices you use for the Yamaha and Kawai the same as manufacturer's suggested retail prices in Piano Buyer. Not what a buyer can actually expect to pay.

John B, I never said you dreamed up the prices in your heads. But the only way to fairly compare prices is to talk list price vs list price (and yes, I got them from the Fine book). You can talk about advertised street prices but it's still not as meaningful because street prices change from locale to locale, let alone continent to continent.

If you insist on using street prices, the only thing I can say is that it looks like there's more discount off the retail prices on the acoustics you mentioned than on the N2. I wonder what that means? Maybe it means that the N2 is in higher demand than those acoustics in your locale, and perhaps that's why it's not discounted as heavily? Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm just trying to prove the point that there are so many factors that affect street prices that you can't take them at face values. The only street pricing that matters to the OP is the local pricing where the OP resides.
Posted by: Melodialworks Music

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:54 AM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.

Someone asked:

'Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright?'

For me the answer is very clear, I would choose the upright anytime.


For me the answer is very clear. I would choose the DP anytime (and every time).
Posted by: John_B

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:10 AM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
... I'm just trying to prove the point that there are so many factors that affect street prices that you can't take them at face values. The only street pricing that matters to the OP is the local pricing where the OP resides.


It seems to me that you automatically discount or ignore anything that doesn't fit with your constantly repeated thesis that the AvantGrand is the be all and end all.

It isn't.

For some it might be the right answer. For others it won't.
Posted by: theJourney

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:19 AM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
Chris, I totally get your point, and I think you totally didn't get MY point. I'm saying that although your point might have been valid for the last few hundred years, it won't be valid anymore very quickly because something else has finally arrived that's going to make the acoustic piano obsolete very quickly.

Chris and the rest of us have the luxury to be able to point to facts about the past and the present while you are pointing to your personal beliefs about the future.

Perhaps your beliefs are correct, but there is no overwhelmingly convincing evidence for any of us to join your religion.
Originally Posted By: Volusiano

I have a very expensive Minolta SLR film camera that is worthless today because digital SLRs with very high resolution have finally arrived in the market and made my camera worthless. When digital cameras just came out, they only had the cheaper point-and-shoot varieties with built-in lenses that was no competition to the full-size professional SLR cameras. But as soon as the digital SLRs came out with sufficient resolution to enable full-size photographs to be printed that look just as good as the film camera, and on top of that, enabled full used of interchangeable SLR professional lenses, it marked the death of film based SLR cameras almost overnight because finally, a viable alternative has arrived. The digital SLR camera killing the film SLR camera is a perfect analogy to make here. Once it came out, do you see anybody buying film SLR cameras on eBay anymore? Wait another 3 to 5 years and maybe you'll see the same demise of the acoustic upright happening, if not already.

SLR cameras may or may not be a useful case to compare to pianos. As you know, there are still shortcomings of digital when compared to film. Personally, I miss my Kodachrome 25. My SLR can still use it, but I can't get it. Acoustic pianos do not suffer from being dependent on complex products and processing infrastructure as film SLR cameras.

It is already true that the "result" of what an acoustic piano and a digital piano can produce on a recording can almost be equally convincing. However, the "user experience" of the player is and will remain very different. Also, the use of a digital piano in live performances is very different. As long as pianos are played by people for the inherent joy of playing and for performing, the acoustic will remain in demand.
Originally Posted By: Volusiano

And the point I want to make about the action on the N2 is that you can use it to control the sound just the same way you do on an acoustic. You can still make it sing and roar and week and sparkle all you want just the same and you won't feel a difference as if you played a grand acoustic Yamaha piano. Why can't you? It's the exact same action that Yamaha uses for their acoustic grand pianos.

The problem with your logic is highlighted.
There is more to a piano than the action.
By definition, the acoustic allows infinite gradations.
By definition, the discrete, sample based recordings played back on the AvantGrand speakers do not.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:27 AM

Originally Posted By: John_B
Originally Posted By: Volusiano
... I'm just trying to prove the point that there are so many factors that affect street prices that you can't take them at face values. The only street pricing that matters to the OP is the local pricing where the OP resides.


It seems to me that you automatically discount or ignore anything that doesn't fit with your constantly repeated thesis that the AvantGrand is the be all and end all.

It isn't.

No sure why you said that because I only argue with what I don't agree with point by point. Your point specifically is on pricing and that's what I take issue with.

I never argue for the N2 on the merit of its sound compared to the acoustic sound. While I may have my own opinion that the N2 sound is good enough, I also said that I totally respect others' opinion if they prefer the acoustic sound and they prefer to place heavy weight on the sound. So how does that make me "automatically discount and ignore anything that doesn't fit ...."? And please show me anywhere on this thread where I said that the Avant-Grand is the be all and end all.

Originally Posted By: John_B
For some it might be the right answer. For others it won't.

You got no argument from me there. I'm not set out here to convince anybody to buy an Avant-Grand. We're all adults here and everybody knows what they want.

If this had been a generic DP vs AP debate with any DP thrown in the picture, I wouldn't have bothered chiming in because I'm fully aware of the basic DP's shortcomings in terms of both sound and action compared to APs. But the Avant-Grand is almost a different breed of DP, so when a thread like this, which is specific to the Avant-Grand, is started and opinions are expressed that I don't agree with as an owner of an N3, I just want to make my opinions known, too, even if it's in contention against other people's opinion and may rub them the wrong way. This is because I'm not just a random player who might have tried the AG a couple of two, three times from before. I've used the N3 for over 7 months now and I've known its capability and experienced what it has to offer fully well every single day.

So at the end of the day, everything is laid out and everybody's opinion is on the table, and the OP or any other readers can read and agree or disagree with anything anybody said here. I don't care to convince anybody to accept my answers. I just care to express my opinions just as you expressed yours. Sorry if we don't see eye to eye, but that's what debates are all about.
Posted by: John_B

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:50 AM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
I'm not set out here to convince anybody to buy an Avant-Grand.


Well, you've fooled me then!
Posted by: theJourney

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 08:35 AM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
I'm not set out here to convince anybody to buy an Avant-Grand.



Mission accomplished.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 09:48 AM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano


You got no argument from me there. I'm not set out here to convince anybody to buy an Avant-Grand. We're all adults here and everybody knows what they want.


Well, you must be careful, Volusiano, because it's quite obvious some people are very easily fooled, and would get the impression you were trying to influence them to buy an Avant Grand.

Having said that, I do share your enthusiasm for the exceptional N2/N3 and firmly believe they easily out-perform ANY upright piano, and rival many of the high end grand pianos.

Having an acoustic grand of fairly good name, and being able to compare the N3 with it, suffice to say, I'd choose the N3 for it's spectacular sound, and, of course, it's ease of maintenance (no tuning) and also it's ability to be recorded much easier.

We wouldn't want to fool anyone into buying something superior...they are even those here who rate instruments with a graphic illustration, rather than actually play them for themselves...either a sign of great inexperience, or perhaps, more likely, a lack of self-confidence in their own judgement and hearing.

There will always be supporters of acoustic uprights, but, their numbers decrease with each advance in the digital piano.

I await the next generation N-series, which is rumored to have some of the CP-series technology, as well as more voices and Audio to USB recording.

It's a great world we live in. Bravo Yamaha.

Snazzy
Posted by: sucroid

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 09:54 AM

Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer
[quote=Volusiano]

I await the next generation N-series, which is rumored to have some of the CP-series technology, as well as more voices and Audio to USB recording.

It's a great world we live in. Bravo Yamaha.

Snazzy


NAMM 2011? wink
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 10:01 AM

Originally Posted By: polygon



NAMM 2011? wink


Could be very likely. My ONLY gripe with the Avant Grands was they didn't have enough sounds...a string patch would have been nice, as well as pipe organ and some pads.

Of course, having Audio to USB recording would be very cool...I have it on my little PSR-S910 arranger/workstation, and it's on the CP-series, so I expect it's a natural for the AG.

Snazzy
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 11:06 AM

Well, let's give it 5 years and see how it goes. My guess is that Yamaha will still be selling far more U series uprights than they will N2's or whatever the next generation will be.
Posted by: Melodialworks Music

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 11:33 AM

Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer

Of course, having Audio to USB recording would be very cool...I have it on my little PSR-S910 arranger/workstation, and it's on the CP-series, so I expect it's a natural for the AG.


Not on the CP1, at least. I wish it was. A useful feature.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 12:08 PM

Originally Posted By: Melodialworks Music
Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer

Of course, having Audio to USB recording would be very cool...I have it on my little PSR-S910 arranger/workstation, and it's on the CP-series, so I expect it's a natural for the AG.


Not on the CP1, at least. I wish it was. A useful feature.


I believe it is on the CP-5/CP-50, Lawrence...perhaps Dr. Popper can confirm it...or we could look in the on-line manual. blush

It is a very handy feature...I use it all the time on the PSR it records in Wav), plus you can even record vocals or another instrument (on the PSR) through the mic/line in.

Snazzy
Posted by: nan

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 04:11 PM

Originally Posted By: John_B
Originally Posted By: Volusiano
I'm not set out here to convince anybody to buy an Avant-Grand.


Well, you've fooled me then!


I can vouch for Volusiano's claim because he and (I think it was) Dewster actually discouraged me from buying an AGN2 on a separate thread. In my case, I've got a CLP 990 with a very good action already, so I can wait a bit for the series to improve. But I must admit I really do want to try out the AG's.

-- so Chris, grand touch action matters a lot to me because I can't afford a grand. I think that's why a lot of us like DP's. The action on the DP I had before my CLP 990 was awful. I love my 990 but am very interested in seeing how it compares to the AG 2.
Posted by: RDW

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 05:41 PM

There seems to be a perception here that the (acoustic) grand piano is in all respects superior to the upright. The upright is viewed as a compromise instrument, designed only for people without the space (or wallet) for a grand. I think this is quite wrong. An upright has its own special character, which can be more appropriate in some situations than a grand. Strangely enough, several digital audio companies seem to agree:

http://www.stedeford.com/schimmelpiano.html

http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/jun03/articles/samp_piano.asp

http://www.clavia.se/main.asp?tm=Libraries&cllibr=Nord_Piano_Library&clplib=Upright_Piano

http://www.synthogy.com/products/uprightpianos.html

Even Steinberg's 'The Grand' includes an upright:

http://www.steinberg.net/en/products/vstinstruments/thegrand3.html

I really don't buy the comparison with digital photography, either. Manufacturers of digital cameras are not fundamentally attempting to emulate film cameras (though retro design touches and gimmicky modes that simulate film grain or sepia toning may superficially suggest otherwise). DPs, on the other hand, are all about imitating APs as closely as possible (for less money but with more convenience). As long as this continues, there will always be a place for the real thing. The original poster, of couse, is the only one one can decide which instrument is preferable. There is no 'correct' answer here, however dogmatic some of the replies have been!
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:04 PM

Actually,. an average grand is a far better sounding instrument than an average upright, and the action is much faster....Yamaha U-series are better sounding than most uprights, but still aren't as responsive as a grand, at least not to my fingers.

Digital pianos, especially the higher end models, base their actions on the grand for a reason.

I personally have no use for upright pianos, finding 99% of them short on sound, and 100% of them lacking in response....but, there are those who love them and want them.

But that's my personal opinion...as seen in the posts, there will be those who differ.

Snazzy
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:06 PM

Originally Posted By: nan
-- so Chris, grand touch action matters a lot to me because I can't afford a grand. I think that's why a lot of us like DP's. The action on the DP I had before my CLP 990 was awful. I love my 990 but am very interested in seeing how it compares to the AG 2.


If you can afford an AvantGrand then you can afford a nice used acoustic grand. If you don't have the space for one then buy yourself a good upright. Or stick with the 990 and save a packet. It won't sound much different to the AG anyway.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:22 PM

Originally Posted By: Karnevil
Hi!

What are you thoughts on the playability/key action, sound, note-seperation/clarity, detail/nuances concerning the AvantGrand N2, and a similar priced Yamaha upright, acoustic piano?

Piano will be used for both classical stuff and jazz.

Thanks! smile


well now, I'm glad I had another gander at the first post.

Classical and Jazz?

By rights, for those genres, you need the action of a grand, not an upright...the response of the latter just won't do...just too pokey.

Best to investigate the Avant Grand N2, or a digital that has the three sensor action.

Snazzy
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 06:57 PM

Genre makes no difference. You can play Classical or jazz on anything you like.

If you absolutely must have a grand piano action then buy a grand piano. The advantages of a grand action will help you to get the most out of the sound of a real acoustic grand piano. If it has to be digital then the action doesn't matter as long as it feels okay t play.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:11 PM

Classical and Jazz are best played on a grand...everyone knows that well enough...ask any pro. That's why you see grands in jazz clubs and on the classical stage....no uprights.

Uprights are pokey, grands are much much better (but expensive!), and there's the tuning issue rearing it's ugly head for both...so the Avant Grand has a grand action and no tuning is necessary...of course, a good three sensor digital by Yamaha or Roland would and should be the next choice, as their actions are modelled after a grand, and a good digital will also sound like a grand, as a real grand piano was sampled for the sounds.

Snazzy



Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:21 PM

I'm sorry but you can't call yourself a serious pianist and then complain about having to have the thing tuned a couple of times a year. Is that your priority? If so then go check your electricity bill after spending 30 hours a week on your DP.

Yes, a grand action is better than an upright action. But what is the action for? It's there to get the best out of the sound. Without the sound of a real acoustic grand piano there really is no point. You can go on about samples all you like but in the end all they give you is a recording of the real thing. It's not real.
Posted by: beet31425

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:29 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
Yes, a grand action is better than an upright action. But what is the action for? It's there to get the best out of the sound. Without the sound of a real acoustic grand piano there really is no point.


I'm not sure if this is true for me. I just started my own piano buying adventure, and one thing I've recently realized is that the feel of the piano is even more important to me than the sound. I realize that this is an artificial distinction, as feel and sound are intricately linked. But, to make it concrete, I find that I have very little opinion of a piano from hearing someone else play it, and a sudden strong opinion from feeling myself play it.

I tried the AvantGrand this weekend. It was impressive. Still not acoustic enough for my own personal needs, but impressive. For me, the OP's choice of AG vs. Yamaha upright is a near-perfect dichotomy: they would have equal worth for me, but for completely different reasons.

I'm sure that doesn't really help. smile

-Jason
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:35 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
I'm sorry but you can't call yourself a serious pianist and then complain about having to have the thing tuned a couple of times a year. .


I'm afraid you can't call yourself a "serious" pianist if your choice is an upright piano. wink

That's why serious players use grand pianos...in fact they refuse to play on nothing less.

If your hearing isn't too sensitive, then tuning (or lack of it) won't be a problem...unfortunately, there are some of us who mind playing an instrument that is slowly going out of tune with itself, and the instruments around it.

I don't mind spending my money having my Steinway tuned, but I wouldn't waste my money on trying to keep an upright in shape...they just aren't worth the effort.

The acoustic vs the digital is a no-win argument...we've all seen many posts on this forum about it that solved nothing...if an acoustic upright makes your boat float, then by all means enjoy it, but please don't assume it's for anyone who takes piano playing seriously.

It isn't. Seriously.

Snazzy
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:36 PM

Originally Posted By: RDW
I really don't buy the comparison with digital photography, either. Manufacturers of digital cameras are not fundamentally attempting to emulate film cameras (though retro design touches and gimmicky modes that simulate film grain or sepia toning may superficially suggest otherwise). DPs, on the other hand, are all about imitating APs as closely as possible (for less money but with more convenience). As long as this continues, there will always be a place for the real thing

It's true that the digital camera doesn't exactly try to emulate the film per se, because after all, the film itself is just another recording medium with its own drawbacks as well. I guess you can say that both the film and the digital CCD are just recording media trying to emulate and capture the vision as seen by the human eyes, with the vision being the "source".

So I agree that in the past decades, the DP has been trying to emulate the acoustic piano sound because the piano sound has been the only "source" available. But with the arrival of the modeling technology, eventually the "model" will become the new "source" (with many adjustable parameters to boost) and will replace the acoustic piano sound source. So emulation of the acoustic piano sound will not continue indefinitely like many people think.

Anyway, back to the point at hand about how the digital SLR is not the perfect analogy like I thought it was. In terms of film being just another recording medium and not a "source" to emulate, I agree. But in terms of being a replacement technology, there are so many uncanny similarities in the digital SLR analogy that it's still my favorite analogy to use:

1) Like the AP, the film technology had been the dominant technology for the longest time with virtually no competition, to the point where it seemed almost invincible.

2) Like the AP, the film technology has a lot of drawbacks and inconveniences that are big hassles to consumers. They're consumable and inhibits you from taking as many pictures as you like for fear of "wasting an exposure". You have to wait to use up the whole roll before you can develop them. You have to drop them off and wait to develop and print, etc.

3) Initial digital camera technology were limited at first to the lower priced point-and-shoot varieties (analogous to the cheaper DPs) with lower resolution CCDs (analogous to the inferior DP sound samples) and inadequate small size optical lenses (analogous to the inferior DP keyboard action). But many people were happy with them for the convenience and practicality they offer, so they took off in popularity.

4) But serious photographers were still sticking to film cameras, because the CCD resolution was still not good enough, and because there was no way those puny little lenses could ever replace those big interchangeable SLR lenses that they've been accustomed to. So the market for film SLR cameras still survived.

5) Finally the digital SLR (analogous to a high end DP like the Avant-Grand) came into the picture that could address most of these concerns, and is superior in many other ways that are inherent attributes of being a digital camera. They're not totally digital. They're hybrid in the sense that they adopt the same analog SLR interchangeable lenses (analogous to the grand keyboard action) because that's the one component that can't be "digitized". They're pretty expensive to start out with (like the AG is), but eventually they come down in price and become more affordable to the masses (like the direction high priced DPs such as the AG will go).
Posted by: Melodialworks Music

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:44 PM

This is like the PC v. Mac debate. (Of course there really is no contest. Macs rule!)
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:56 PM

Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer
I'm afraid you can't call yourself a "serious" pianist if your choice is an upright piano. wink

That's why serious players use grand pianos...in fact they refuse to play on nothing less.


Like any other serious pianist my choice is an acoustic.

Where is your evidence to suggest that serious players refuse to play anything other than grand pianos?
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 07:57 PM

Originally Posted By: Melodialworks Music
This is like the PC v. Mac debate. (Of course there really is no contest. Macs rule!)


Ha Ha...spoken like a true Macophile. wink
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 08:01 PM

Originally Posted By: beet31425
I find that I have very little opinion of a piano from hearing someone else play it, and a sudden strong opinion from feeling myself play it.


Of course, that's because you are in control of the sound it makes.
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 08:04 PM

Originally Posted By: Melodialworks Music
This is like the PC v. Mac debate. (Of course there really is no contest. Macs rule!)


Mac owners convince themselves of the Mac's superiority in order to justify the price they paid. I would say the same about the AvantGrand.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 08:07 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
I'm sorry but you can't call yourself a serious pianist and then complain about having to have the thing tuned a couple of times a year. Is that your priority? If so then go check your electricity bill after spending 30 hours a week on your DP.

I did the calculation on how much electricity I would pay to play the N3 for 30 hours a week. At 500W (unlike most other DPs who average less than 100W), that's 60kWH a month for 120 hrs, and my rate is 6.6c/kWH, so that comes out to about $4/month on electricity cost on the N3, or under $50 a year. Can I get 2 tunings/year for $25/tuning?

I use the N3 on headphones for 1/2 the time, so my N3 wouldn't be running at the full 500W all the times because the amps will sit at idle in headphones mode. And I don't use 30 hours/week, more like 21 hours/week (at 3 hours a day max). So adjusting for these factors, my annual cost is actually around $17/year of electricity to operate the N3.

While my first priority is volume control and not tuning, being 100% in tune (not just the tuning cost) is my second priority.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 08:16 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.


Like any other serious pianist my choice is an acoustic.



It's an acoustic upright, right?

Get yourself a real piano...get a grand. smirk

The choice of professionals the world over.

Snazzy
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 08:21 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
Originally Posted By: Melodialworks Music
This is like the PC v. Mac debate. (Of course there really is no contest. Macs rule!)


Mac owners convince themselves of the Mac's superiority in order to justify the price they paid. I would say the same about the AvantGrand.

I know that Melodialworks just threw it out there in jest for fun, but it's the DP that's always been the underdog and it's the AP's camp who claims superiority, not the other way around.

As for the AvantGrand being overpriced, maybe so, but only compared to other lower priced DPs, which are very nice, just not as nice. But I wouldn't call the AvantGrand overpriced compared to a brand new acoustic upright, and especially compared to a new acoustic grand.
Posted by: jmmec

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 08:42 PM

A "real pianist" would never play an upright... right?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_mhaa_2uTBQ

smile
Posted by: kippesc

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 08:53 PM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
I did the calculation on how much electricity I would pay to play the N3 for 30 hours a week. At 500W (unlike most other DPs who average less than 100W), that's 60kWH a month for 120 hrs, and my rate is 6.6c/kWH, so that comes out to about $4/month on electricity cost on the N3, or under $50 a year.


Awesome comment! I wonder what I'm paying when I run my N2 into my MacBook Pro.

On a more substantive note: I have been pleasantly surprised at how good the sample set is on the N2 when played through Sennheiser HD-600 headphones. Also, it should be noted that the instrument has two piano voices, and I find that I like playing classical with voice 1 and jazz with voice 2 (a brighter sound).

Several years ago I owned a Yamaha U5 which was bright and loud, even when brand new. Voice 2 reminds me of that piano. But of course, not all U5s are that way and they can be needled into a more mellow state.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 09:01 PM

Originally Posted By: jmmec
A "real pianist" would never play an upright... right?


smile


Poor fellow...didn't even give him a decent bench either...they should be fully ashamed of themselves.

It'll take him weeks to get that awful experience out of his head.

He'd have been better off with a decent digital piano, and miles ahead with an Avant Grand or a Roland HP-307....either way, he'd would have actually enjoyed playing, instead of that forced performance on that awful upright. wink

Snazzy
Posted by: Dave Ferris

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 09:19 PM

.
Posted by: Melodialworks Music

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 09:21 PM

Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer
Originally Posted By: jmmec
A "real pianist" would never play an upright... right?
smile


Poor fellow...didn't even give him a decent bench either...they should be fully ashamed of themselves.

It'll take him weeks to get that awful experience out of his head.



It is worth reading the comments included with that Youtube video. Seems to support the Acoustic Grands are better than Uprights argument. (Although it really seems absurd to have to be making the argument).

I really had a giggle, though, at snazzy's humour . . . . !
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/05/10 09:25 PM

Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris



Again before you say all uprights are created equal---


They aren't...but they still don't have the response of a grand piano.

Disgusting. wink

Just think of how good his performance would have been on a real piano.

He'll need extensive therapy after that experience. wink

Snazzy
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 04:51 AM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
Originally Posted By: Chris H.
I'm sorry but you can't call yourself a serious pianist and then complain about having to have the thing tuned a couple of times a year. Is that your priority? If so then go check your electricity bill after spending 30 hours a week on your DP.

I did the calculation on how much electricity I would pay to play the N3 for 30 hours a week. At 500W (unlike most other DPs who average less than 100W), that's 60kWH a month for 120 hrs, and my rate is 6.6c/kWH, so that comes out to about $4/month on electricity cost on the N3, or under $50 a year. Can I get 2 tunings/year for $25/tuning?

I use the N3 on headphones for 1/2 the time, so my N3 wouldn't be running at the full 500W all the times because the amps will sit at idle in headphones mode. And I don't use 30 hours/week, more like 21 hours/week (at 3 hours a day max). So adjusting for these factors, my annual cost is actually around $17/year of electricity to operate the N3.


Don't forget that the real grand action will need regulating often to keep it up to your high standards.

Also, as I have already mentioned the biggest cost will be massive depreciation.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 05:26 AM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
Don't forget that the real grand action will need regulating often to keep it up to your high standards.

Are you implying that upright action never needs to be regulated at all? It shouldn't be any different or more often than upright regulation. And not often as in twice a year tuning. Maybe once every few years, if you play a lot, and only if problems arise. At least the N2 never needs to be voiced and tuned.

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
Also, as I have already mentioned the biggest cost will be massive depreciation.

And I've also already mentioned that I would worry more about depreciation of acoustic uprights even today than depreciation of the N2 5 years from now. I don't even know why you feel the need to keep beating on this dead horse when we've already killed it several posts ago. It's simpler to just agree to disagree at this point.
Posted by: EssBrace

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 05:50 AM

I agree...the basic topic is a dead horse. This always happens when an acoustic piano aficionado strays onto the forum. We are here because we like DPs/keyboards/synths etc. It's just a waste of everybody's time for someone to preach about their OPINION of the superiority of certain acoustic pianos.

If I could get myself an AG I would be very very happy to have it. I would not cross the street to own ANY upright piano. No one is going to persuade me otherwise and I dare say I will not persuade certain individuals of what I consider to be the superiority of the AG to ANY upright piano.

However, the idea that the upright piano is as worthy and valid and relevant as a grand piano is laughable. The upright was born out of a need to emulate a real (grand) piano but at much lower cost and with a much smaller footprint. Those people that link to the odd YouTube vid where a decent musician gets a decent tune out of an upright: well done, very convincing. Now show me a video of Horowitz or Agerich or Ashkenazy or Billy Joel or Elton John or Diana Krall or indeed any top notch piano player playing an upright by choice.

The philosophical argument about Digital v Acoustic can rage on for years to come. But surely no one is seriously saying an upright piano has a future? Grands yes for another generation at least, but uprights are already dead in the water.

Steve
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 10:42 AM

You are joking aren't you Steve?

As far as I was aware this is a public forum where anyone is free to comment.

By the way, I am not an 'acoustic' piano aficionado. I am simply a pianist and a piano teacher who has a lot of experience with both acoustic and digital instruments. The OP asked for opinions on the N2 vs a Yamaha upright and I happen to have spent time with both these pianos. I offered my opinion which I am entitled to thanks very much.

If you guys want to waste your money on an N2 then good luck to you. You can impress your mates and bang on about its 'grand piano action'. Unfortunately what you will have is not a grand piano, it's just an expensive digital which will be obsolete far sooner than any acoustic upright.

It's clear that none of you are prepared to listen to any opinions that differ with your own in which case I will leave you to play nicely on your forum.
Posted by: nan

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 12:07 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.
Originally Posted By: nan
-- so Chris, grand touch action matters a lot to me because I can't afford a grand. I think that's why a lot of us like DP's. The action on the DP I had before my CLP 990 was awful. I love my 990 but am very interested in seeing how it compares to the AG 2.


If you can afford an AvantGrand then you can afford a nice used acoustic grand. If you don't have the space for one then buy yourself a good upright. Or stick with the 990 and save a packet. It won't sound much different to the AG anyway.



On this forum, some have paid a little over $8,000 (to $10,000) for the AGN2. The last time I was looking, I didn't find an upright that I liked for that amount. Basically, I'd prefer a good acoustic grand first, of course, Chris you're right about that. But my experience with Boston grands makes me hesitant. Where I take lessons, they bought four brand new Bostons grands about five years ago. Only one of them sounds good to me and all of them get routinely tuned. Two of them sound very bright and not as good at all as my 990 (with headphones admittedly). How do I know what I'm going to get when I buy an acoustic grand which would have to be at the lower end for double what I have to pay for the AGN2? So I'm very interested in an excellent digital with good touch and if it gives me the feel of a good grand, so much the better.
Posted by: Karnevil

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 12:30 PM

Wow.... that's many pages with lots of opinions.. smile I'll try to find a store with an N2 AvantGrand. Again, my problem with the digitals so far (though mostly top level stage pianos), is that I can't find a connection with the instrument. It's soo unsatisfying. I'm no classical concert pianist. Mostly jazz stuff, and some classical on the side to maintain and improve technique.
All this talk about key action and sound. The thing is, they have to be connected, and there has to be a sense of life and detail to the sound when playing. Most digitals sound rather dead to me. But hopefully this AvantGrand series is better..
We'll see.. smile
I agree with the upright comments, but I much prefer practicing on an good upright to a Yamaha CP300, Roland RD700GX, Kawai MP9500 (ok, this one is better than the others, but no cigar) etc.. Haven't had too much experience with Clavinovas. Have tried them out in stores, and wasn't too impressed...
Posted by: MarcoM

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 02:28 PM

One thing I think Yamaha should do with the N2/N3 is to allow the digital 'guts' of the piano to be swappable, so if in the future an N12/N13 comes out with much improved samples/synthesis one could keep the N2/N3 action/cabinet/speakers and just upgrade the sound engine.

Of course Yamaha would prefer to sell a new 10k+ piano rather than a 2k+ sound expansion card, but then again if these were available a lot more N2/N3 owners would upgrade to those than sell their N2/N3 to buy a newer one!
Posted by: ChrisA

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 03:42 PM

Originally Posted By: MarcoM
One thing I think Yamaha should do with the N2/N3 is to allow the digital 'guts' of the piano to be swappable,


They did. That is what MIDI and Line-In are for.


But I know what you are saying. it would be good if the sound were in a self contained box that could be swapped out. But I think Yamaha would rather (1) Not point out to potential buyers that the current technology will become obsolete and (2) they want to sell you a new piano when it does.
Posted by: dewster

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 03:58 PM

Originally Posted By: MarcoM
One thing I think Yamaha should do with the N2/N3 is to allow the digital 'guts' of the piano to be swappable, so if in the future an N12/N13 comes out with much improved samples/synthesis one could keep the N2/N3 action/cabinet/speakers and just upgrade the sound engine.

Of course Yamaha would prefer to sell a new 10k+ piano rather than a 2k+ sound expansion card, but then again if these were available a lot more N2/N3 owners would upgrade to those than sell their N2/N3 to buy a newer one!

Better yet, why can't Yamaha just build it right in the first place? Why they refuse to put a couple of hundred dollars of computer into something that costs >$10k is beyond me.

This is one of the big reasons I dislike high-end cabinetry DPs, the guts never live up to the promise of the outer trappings.
Posted by: MarcoM

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 04:10 PM

Originally Posted By: ChrisA
They did. That is what MIDI and Line-In are for.


does the avant grand transmit variable 'soft' pedal information over midi? or only on/off? can you have TRS availability while playing, say, pianoteq via MIDI/line-in or would you have to disable TRS entirely otherwise?

Originally Posted By: dewster
why can't Yamaha just build it right in the first place?


because it doesn't make any business sense to do so? If you can keep selling incremental improvements every few years for full price, why would you try to get to the complete bleeding edge knowing that for 10 years or more you wouldn't be able to really provide any sort of meaningful upgrade?

On the other hand I do think that for the price premium an N2/N3 commands, they ought to have been made state-of-the-art even in terms of synthesis, because part of this price premium is the 'once a person buys this it's unlikely they'll buy another DP for a long, long time'.
Posted by: RDW

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 06:29 PM

Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer
That's why serious players use grand pianos...in fact they refuse to play on nothing less.


I can think of one or two exceptions! Chopin used an upright Pleyel at various times. Rachmaninov's early recordings were on an upright, he had one in his touring railway carriage, and specified 'a small upright' as an alternative to one of the harps in the 3rd Symphony. Gershwin composed most of Rhapsody in Blue on an upright, and Glenn Gould developed his early technique on one. These choices were likely dictated by circumstance or convenience (they obviously used grands for public solo performances), but Jacques Durand intriguingly notes that Debussy 'was very fond of his upright piano, a lovely instrument from which he drew ravishing sounds.'

I also find it curious that a modern concert grand like the Steinway, which only reached its current form late in the 19th century (and is very different from the pianos that many of the greatest works were actually composed for) is so often seen as the only instrument 'worthy' of the standard repertoire, or of emulation on a DP (at least without external sample libraries). How about chucking out the dreadful simulated choir and string sounds that every DP seems plagued with, and giving us some decent uprights, fortepianos, Broadwoods or Pleyels to supplement 'Grand Piano 1'?
Posted by: dewster

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 07:09 PM

Originally Posted By: MarcoM
If you can keep selling incremental improvements every few years for full price, why would you try to get to the complete bleeding edge knowing that for 10 years or more you wouldn't be able to really provide any sort of meaningful upgrade?

Yeah, but I've never seen anything like this. The DP industry is so far behind the technology curve that it's joke. Maybe PCs caught them with their pants down, but how long do we have to wait for them to finally wake up?

Meanwhile we're reduced to cobbling together random keyboards and decent PC-based piano sounds on our own to fill the void. It's sad.
Posted by: John_B

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 07:16 PM

Originally Posted By: RDW
How about chucking out the dreadful simulated choir and string sounds that every DP seems plagued with, and giving us some decent uprights, fortepianos, Broadwoods or Pleyels to supplement 'Grand Piano 1'?
Too right! Perhaps a few really good harpsichords as well.
Posted by: RDW

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 07:30 PM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
But with the arrival of the modeling technology, eventually the "model" will become the new "source" (with many adjustable parameters to boost) and will replace the acoustic piano sound source. So emulation of the acoustic piano sound will not continue indefinitely like many people think.


I don't believe this will ever happen in the classical world, at least for the purposes of public performance (practice is another matter). The Berlin Philharmonic could replace their timpani with a drum machine tomorrow, but they aren't going to. What would be the point? Audiences want authenticity (hence the popularity of the 'historic performance'/'original instrument' style, where Mozart concertos are played on a fortepiano accompanied by gut-strung violins tuned to a period pitch). For rock/pop, of course, all bets are off.


Originally Posted By: Volusiano
But in terms of being a replacement technology, there are so many uncanny similarities in the digital SLR analogy that it's still my favorite analogy to use


The similarity that strikes me is between the way dSLRs are discussed on photography forums, and the way DPs are sometimes talked about here. Over on places like dpreview, there are endless threads discussing the relative merits of different cameras with respect to pixel density, noise levels, shutter lag, AF speed, chromatic aberration, and build quality. Certain brands and types of camera are seen as superior since they are what the 'professionals' use. Much less space is given to whether all these features are actually necessary for a specific style of photography, or to the mysterious process of using this technology to communicate a particular artistic idea. Sometimes how the camera feels in your hand is more important than the ISO range or the framerate it can deliver, but try suggesting that to someone who thinks a particular dSLR is the only camera worth buying! The typical reaction is enough to make me want to put down the D300 and pick up an 'obsolete' 'analogue' Leica...
Posted by: kippesc

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 08:37 PM

Originally Posted By: MarcoM

does the avant grand transmit variable 'soft' pedal information over midi? or only on/off? can you have TRS availability while playing, say, pianoteq via MIDI/line-in or would you have to disable TRS entirely otherwise?


Just checked my N2 through Pianoteq. The soft pedal is NOT continuous (you get either 0 or 127). The sustain pedal IS continuous (0 to 127 -- thus: 0, 4, 7, 12, 16, and so on . . . .).

In order to run Pianoteq audio into the N2 line in, you have to turn "Local Control" off. One effect of disabling local control is that you don't get TRS. If, however, you leave local control on, turn down the internal volume, and run Pianoteq through headphones or external speakers, you of course still get TRS.
Posted by: MarcoM

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 08:47 PM

it would have been nice if it was possible to leave trs on but have local control off to be able to play, say, pianoteq on the internal speakers with trs enabled... thanks for checking the soft pedal, surprised it's still modeled/sent only as on/off
Posted by: Marty Flinn

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 09:03 PM

I have just read this thread from the beginning and through all ten pages. It occurs to me that many detractors of the AvantGrand are those who have never actually played and heard one. They are basing their arguments on their experiences and notions about digital pianos in general. Really not fair.

One item to note. When you turn on the N3 or N2 the default setting for the TRS (tactile esponse system)is 2. You should hold the TRS button and push the + button once to raise it to level 3 for the best AvanGrand experience. Yamaha is reviewing the default setting and may alter this on units in production.

The action in the AvantGrand is nothing like other digital piano action designs. It is a real Yamaha grand piano action minus the hammers (including let off after touch). The action is the same in the N3 and the N2.

I continue to hear folks tout the virtues of vertical acoustic pianos over small (less than 6') acoustic grands. This is just nuts. The action repetition sensitivity is demonstrably better and the tone and volume is nearly always bigger and better. We contrast the U3 and the GB1K(Yamaha entry BG) daily and there is no comparison. I don't get it. I guess it just makes them feel better about themselves and their pianos. Yes, if you took a S&S K52 and compared it to the cheapest 4'8" grand the tone would be better. Comparing like brand and/or like price points the contest always falls to the grand.

We have sold several N3s and all to folks who were seriously shopping 6-7 foot acoustic grands. A nearby college with a kickin' music department is buying four N2s this month!
Posted by: ChrisA

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 09:10 PM

Originally Posted By: MarcoM
Originally Posted By: ChrisA
They did. That is what MIDI and Line-In are for.


does the avant grand transmit variable 'soft' pedal information over midi? or only on/off? can you have TRS availability while playing, say, pianoteq via MIDI/line-in.


I think "yes" in both cases. Most DPs that have continuous pedals do transmit the pedal position. And yes you could allow the TRS to run, it would be driven be the "old" factory samples. No need to disable the MIDI local control function.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 09:21 PM

Originally Posted By: Marty Flinn


We have sold several N3s and all to folks who were seriously shopping 6-7 foot acoustic grands. A nearby college with a kickin' music department is buying four N2s this month!


Understandably so, Marty...and a real plus, besides the savings from tuning costs, is that the Avant Grand has great electric piano patches as well as the awesome acoustic piano sounds.

Snazzy
Posted by: Dave Ferris

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 09:55 PM

.
Posted by: MarcoM

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 10:24 PM

Originally Posted By: ChrisA
I think "yes" in both cases. Most DPs that have continuous pedals do transmit the pedal position. And yes you could allow the TRS to run, it would be driven be the "old" factory samples. No need to disable the MIDI local control function.


according to kippesc the answer is in fact no to the first, soft pedal is on/off (wonder why), and sort of to #2 since you can leave TRS on, but there is no way to have TRS on *and* an external sound generator to play on the internal speakers.

Both of these could be easy fixes for Yamaha: the soft pedal should be made analog at least for MIDI, and it should be possible to have a hybrid 'local off with TRS on' setting, but it seems doubtful these will change, on the other hand if these were done they would definitely help in future proofing the N2/N3 even more.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 10:25 PM

Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris
Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer

.......and a real plus, besides the savings from tuning costs, is that the Avant Grand has great electric piano patches......


A " must have " for Bach, Mozart or Chopin. smile


But of course....but, quite likely it wouldn't matter much to those guys since they're fairly dead.

At least they better be dead...someone's after burying the poor fellows. grin

Snazzy
Posted by: dewster

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/06/10 11:12 PM

Originally Posted By: Marty Flinn
I have just read this thread from the beginning and through all ten pages. It occurs to me that many detractors of the AvantGrand are those who have never actually played and heard one. They are basing their arguments on their experiences and notions about digital pianos in general. Really not fair.

I've heard the DPBSD MP3 of the N3. For that kind of money I expect heaven on earth in the sound department, not obvious looping.

DP fail.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 04:11 AM

Originally Posted By: dewster
Originally Posted By: Marty Flinn
I have just read this thread from the beginning and through all ten pages. It occurs to me that many detractors of the AvantGrand are those who have never actually played and heard one. They are basing their arguments on their experiences and notions about digital pianos in general. Really not fair.

I've heard the DPBSD MP3 of the N3. For that kind of money I expect heaven on earth in the sound department, not obvious looping.

DP fail.

If I remember correctly, the only "Cons" from that DPBSD test on the N3 was that looping exists, but everything else belonged in the "Pros" bucket. And even as a "Cons", the comment was that "looping isn't too badly done", although looping exists.

Sure, it would have been nice if there were no looping, but what if Yamaha decided that looping is that 1% of imperfection that nobody sees or cares really unless they look for it under a microscope? I know it's not an issue for me at all, and I play the N3 everyday.

Instead of putting priority to fix that 1% imperfection for very little ROI, maybe Yamaha preferred to spend the money on other things that matter more, like the grand action keyboard design, the 16-amp sound system, the TRS, the pedal pressure gradient, etc. I would want them to give those things priority for sure.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 06:44 AM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
Originally Posted By: dewster
Originally Posted By: Marty Flinn
I have just read this thread from the beginning and through all ten pages. It occurs to me that many detractors of the AvantGrand are those who have never actually played and heard one. They are basing their arguments on their experiences and notions about digital pianos in general. Really not fair.

I've heard the DPBSD MP3 of the N3. For that kind of money I expect heaven on earth in the sound department, not obvious looping.

DP fail.

If I remember correctly, the only "Con" from that DPBSD test on the N3 was that looping exists, but everything else belonged in the "Pro" bucket. And even as a "Con", the comment was that "looping isn't too badly done", although looping exists.



Volusiano, we both know that certain people here have a personal grudge against Yamaha...most of them have not even played an N2 or N3, and some of them are more techies than they are players.

I and many others, understand your happiness with the Avant Grand, because we have played and enjoyed the excellent sound and tactile response the instrument gives to the player...and note well that word "player". It is an instrument that must be played to be fully appreciated.

There are some individuals who will never be satisfied with a digital piano, no matter how good it is...even the software instruments get picked apart...these people will never be happy with whatever they play or buy...as my old Grannie used to say, "When they die, they won't like God."

This constant dissatisfaction can also be a disguise to cover the fact they aren't in the financial position to buy the best, or even the next-best...they are the very same people who believe they can do better than the manufacturers and create a digital piano and/or a speaker system for little or no money, building it from household materials, and cheap everyday components.

Now, would you consider a product recommendation from someone like that? I know they'd be the last on my list, and no doubt at the bottom of many other's lists as well.

These individuals can only be happy finding fault with everything they touch, and, rather than give an honest and unbiased review, they like to feel they are more powerful when degrading or besmirching a product or a manufacturer's reputation and good intentions...they devise tests and play detective, because it makes them feel important, their insecurity about their musical ability usually drives them onward and along.

Enjoy your piano, my friend...it is the best digital available at present, and you are very fortunate to be in possession of such a terrific piano....don't waste the time you could be indulging in musical bliss by reading the negativity posted by individuals who are quite probably envious of your situation.

Snazzy
Posted by: dewster

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 09:24 AM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
If I remember correctly, the only "Cons" from that DPBSD test on the N3 was that looping exists, but everything else belonged in the "Pros" bucket. And even as a "Cons", the comment was that "looping isn't too badly done", although looping exists.

Correct, and nothing personal, but I'm past the point of putting up with looping in any DP we might consider owning, particularly at that price point.

CONS:
- Obviously looped, both visually and audibly, particularly the lowest notes, though it isn't too badly done.
- Loop lengths are rather short.
- Loop lengths are (C2:C9): 0.7,0.67,0.67,0.67,0.56,0.43,?,? seconds.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 09:28 AM

Originally Posted By: dewster


Correct, and nothing personal, but I'm past the point of putting up with looping in any DP we might consider owning, particularly at that price point.



Well said, Dewster...and predictably so. grin

Thanks,

Snazzy
Posted by: theJourney

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 09:48 AM

I think you would have to be loopy to pay more than $10000 for a digital piano, but that's me.
Posted by: sucroid

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 09:53 AM

Originally Posted By: theJourney
I think you would have to be loopy to pay more than $10000 for a digital piano, but that's me.


If the sound engine can be upgraded, I think the $10,000 price tag is easier to justify.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 10:51 AM

Originally Posted By: theJourney
I think you would have to be loopy to pay more than $10000 for a digital piano, but that's me.


I'm very glad for Volusiano...he obviously sets his musical instrument priorities much higher than most people, and obviously wants the best for himself.

Now, if he had purchased a Young Chang acoustic grand for $10,000, I'd agree he'd be loopy, but he obviously recognizes and appreciates quality and went with the best digital piano available.

You'd think you'd be happy for the man, instead of making fun of him...but, as you say, "that's you." wink

Snazzy
Posted by: jmmec

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 10:59 AM

Snazzy, you and your alter ego, colleen, are the epitome of mean-spiritedness; even spitefulness. It's shameful.
Posted by: EssBrace

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 11:04 AM

He's just robustly singing the praises of the Avant Grand (which he has owned along with a Steinway Grand so you have to agree he is qualified to comment)...nothing particularly spiteful about that is there?

Steve
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 11:09 AM

Originally Posted By: jmmec
Snazzy, you and your alter ego, colleen, are the epitome of mean-spiritedness; even spitefulness. It's shameful.




What's shameful, Jane, is you bringing someone into a conversation who is not here to defend herself.

That's very low...even for you.

Now, be a nice young lady, and take a long walk off a short pier...we'll even applaud....after the splash, of course. grin

Snazzy
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 11:18 AM

Originally Posted By: EssBrace
He's just robustly singing the praises of the Avant Grand (which he has owned along with a Steinway Grand so you have to agree he is qualified to comment)...nothing particularly spiteful about that is there?

Steve


Thanks Steve. Luckily for Jane above, that Colleen has left the forum (she's actually in Europe somewhere) and isn't here to make a complete and utter fool out of Jane....of course, Jane seems to be doing a pretty good job on her own.

How's the new HP-307 working out? Next to the Avant Grand and CP-1, it is every bit as great, based on it's own merits.

Did you get your RD-700 yet? I've been away a bit...selling my vintage cars and vintage synths in preparation for a move to Canada....I'm keeping the Steinway, and storing it at a friend's place.

My newest toy, a Yamaha PSR-S910 arranger/workstation, is a real hoot to play...I use my P-85 as a controller when I need more than five octaves. I'll send you a link in PM to a recording I did last week.

Snazzy
Posted by: EssBrace

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 11:26 AM

Hi Snazzy

HP-307 going very well thanks. I'm happy with it. RD-700 and its Supernatural upgrade arrived as well and I was surprised to hear that they are different in some ways (I prefer the HP slightly). What I really wanted was a Yamaha CP5 (rather than RD) but I was tied to the shop by the credit note for the V-Piano (I miss its expressiveness but NOT its sound!).

If I could find something that could be really nice furniture AND top level piano sound(s) then I would in time go to a single box solution...maybe the next generation of AG for instance...having really studied the AG I think it is a fantastic looking thing, way ahead of my venerable old Gran Touch.

Best wishes,

Steve
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 11:38 AM

Originally Posted By: EssBrace
Hi Snazzy

HP-307 going very well thanks. I'm happy with it. RD-700 and its Supernatural upgrade arrived as well and I was surprised to hear that they are different in some ways (I prefer the HP slightly). What I really wanted was a Yamaha CP5 (rather than RD) but I was tied to the shop by the credit note for the V-Piano (I miss its expressiveness but NOT its sound!).

If I could find something that could be really nice furniture AND top level piano sound(s) then I would in time go to a single box solution...maybe the next generation of AG for instance...having really studied the AG I think it is a fantastic looking thing, way ahead of my venerable old Gran Touch.

Best wishes,

Steve


I've been contemplating the CP-5 too, but I think I may hold off till after my move before I commit to anything...the next gen Avant Grand may be out by then...it's rumored to have more orchestral patches, which I missed on the N3.

I played an HP-307 again, while on my trip to Nova Scotia...I liked it even more than the last time I played it...the action is excellent, and I thought it felt very interactive with the sound...it's been a while since I played the V-Piano, so I can't actually compare, but I can see (and hear) why the HP appeals to you...the mids are far more robust, and they are much better that the ones I remember on the V-Piano.

Snazzy

I sent you a PM.
Posted by: jmmec

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 04:48 PM

Originally Posted By: EssBrace
He's just robustly singing the praises of the Avant Grand (which he has owned along with a Steinway Grand so you have to agree he is qualified to comment)...nothing particularly spiteful about that is there?

Steve



No, that is not all that Snazzy is doing. Re-read his posts, and it will be clear that every criticism against "someone" is a direct attack against dewster, or those that support dewster's position. It is pathetic behavior, if not a serious sign of mental derangement.

Snazzy - for your sake (and ours), please take your meds.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 05:05 PM

Originally Posted By: jmmec
Originally Posted By: EssBrace
He's just robustly singing the praises of the Avant Grand (which he has owned along with a Steinway Grand so you have to agree he is qualified to comment)...nothing particularly spiteful about that is there?

Steve



No, that is not all that Snazzy is doing. Re-read his posts, and it will be clear that every criticism against "someone" is a direct attack against dewster, or those that support dewster's position. It is pathetic behavior, if not a serious sign of mental derangement.

Snazzy - for your sake (and ours), please take your meds.



Me take drugs? Why? Just because you need them, Jane, doesn't mean we all do...you are such a nice person...why are you going down the wrong path? Oh Jane, why? Please, stay...stay and get better.

Stare at a few of Uncle Dewster's squiggly lined pictures...have your favorites framed. wink

Or, failing that, why not take another long walk off that short pier...perhaps take your pet fish for a stroll. grin

Snazzy
Posted by: jmmec

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 05:07 PM

Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer
What's shameful, Jane, is you bringing someone into a conversation who is not here to defend herself.

That's very low...even for you.

Now, be a nice young lady, and take a long walk off a short pier...we'll even applaud....after the splash, of course. grin

Snazzy



My suspicion is that Snazzy and Colleen_500 are one and the same. This would be a very disturbing revelation if true. I also suspect it is against the PianoWorld rules to have more than one registered account.

If the forum software is tracking IP addresses, then a moderator could check the two messages below to see if they came from the same IP address. They were posted within a short timeframe of each other, so a dynamic IP address is unlikely to have been released and reassigned - I'll assume there is no IP spoofing going on:

From Colleen_500 on Feb 16 @ 11:33am:

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthrea...tml#Post1375512

From Snazzy on Feb 16 @ 11:43am:

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthrea...tml#Post1375521

I hope a moderator will investigate. If I'm wrong, then I will apologize.
Posted by: EssBrace

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 06:23 PM

Those that know me would tell you that I am not known for seeing the best in people; I'm cynical by nature. But I think your accusation is astounding...when I've seen your previous intimations about it I thought you were just joking. I don't believe it at all, just as I don't believe that Dewster or anyone else would do anything underhand ref the DPBSD (and I fully accept his testing has been very controversial). I mean we can all disagree without doubting another's integrity.

I suspect you will indeed have to make that apology.

Cheers,

Steve
Posted by: Melodialworks Music

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 07:42 PM

Originally Posted By: jmmec


My suspicion is that Snazzy and Colleen_500 are one and the same. This would be a very disturbing revelation if true.


Heh. Heh. They are certainly not one and the same. A novel idea, though!

Lawrence
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 07:45 PM

I can't help but chuckle, too, at the notion that Snazzy would need to create another poster persona to help him with debates on this board. After seeing all his posts, don't you guys think he's outspoken enough already to spar with anybody here 10 times over without needing any kind of disguise for help?
Posted by: Chris H.

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 07:51 PM

Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer

Me take drugs? Why? Just because you need them, Jane, doesn't mean we all do...you are such a nice person...why are you going down the wrong path? Oh Jane, why? Please, stay...stay and get better.

Stare at a few of Uncle Dewster's squiggly lined pictures...have your favorites framed. wink

Or, failing that, why not take another long walk off that short pier...perhaps take your pet fish for a stroll. grin

Snazzy



I don't call this debating. From what I have seen here all Snazzy does is insult those who don't agree with him.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/07/10 08:02 PM

Originally Posted By: Chris H.


I don't call this debating. From what I have seen here all Snazzy does is insult those who don't agree with him.


You're just bitter because I don't agree with YOU....having me on your side would be a great feather in your cap, and would probably lead to much more boasting, and we can't have that here, among those of us who act like adults. grin

I would gladly agree with your statements on this forum if they were right....but they aren't, so I don't.

Snazzy
Posted by: athomik

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 06:26 AM

Originally Posted By: ChrisA
Originally Posted By: MarcoM
Originally Posted By: ChrisA
They did. That is what MIDI and Line-In are for.


does the avant grand transmit variable 'soft' pedal information over midi? or only on/off? can you have TRS availability while playing, say, pianoteq via MIDI/line-in.


I think "yes" in both cases. Most DPs that have continuous pedals do transmit the pedal position. And yes you could allow the TRS to run, it would be driven be the "old" factory samples. No need to disable the MIDI local control function.

Considering that the 'Soft' function on an acoustic piano must be either fully on or fully off for it to function correctly, I can't see why you would want an incremental soft pedal on a DP. If you want continous control for the volume on a DP, you get a volume pedal.
Posted by: theJourney

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 06:46 AM

Originally Posted By: athomik
Originally Posted By: ChrisA
Originally Posted By: MarcoM
Originally Posted By: ChrisA
They did. That is what MIDI and Line-In are for.


does the avant grand transmit variable 'soft' pedal information over midi? or only on/off? can you have TRS availability while playing, say, pianoteq via MIDI/line-in.


I think "yes" in both cases. Most DPs that have continuous pedals do transmit the pedal position. And yes you could allow the TRS to run, it would be driven be the "old" factory samples. No need to disable the MIDI local control function.

Considering that the 'Soft' function on an acoustic piano must be either fully on or fully off for it to function correctly, I can't see why you would want an incremental soft pedal on a DP. If you want continous control for the volume on a DP, you get a volume pedal.


confused
Posted by: MarcoM

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 11:56 AM

Originally Posted By: athomik
Considering that the 'Soft' function on an acoustic piano must be either fully on or fully off for it to function correctly, I can't see why you would want an incremental soft pedal on a DP. If you want continous control for the volume on a DP, you get a volume pedal.


I've read pianists mention that with the soft pedal they can slightly engage it to cause the hammers to strike just outside the grooves for additional tonal variations, that is not an on/off kind of usage. Definitely above my skill level, so if any better pianist cares to chime in about this it'd be great...
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 03:49 PM

Originally Posted By: jmmec




My suspicion is that Snazzy and Colleen_500 are one and the same. This would be a very disturbing revelation if true. I also suspect it is against the PianoWorld rules to have more than one registered account.

If the forum software is tracking IP addresses, then a moderator could check the two messages below to see if they came from the same IP address. They were posted within a short timeframe of each other, so a dynamic IP address is unlikely to have been released and reassigned - I'll assume there is no IP spoofing going on:

I hope a moderator will investigate. If I'm wrong, then I will apologize.



Well Jane, you owe me an apology.

I haven't heard back from Colleen yet, but I would say you owe her one as well, although I don't think she's too interested in coming back to this forum....time will tell.

Now, I hope this is the last either of us hear about this from you, or anyone else.

Accusations and allegations of the type presented by you are very serious, as it questions the integrity of myself, and of another person, who wasn't even here to defend herself.

I hope you have learned something from this...I know I sure have learned something about you, as have the rest of the members of this fine forum.

Snazzy
Posted by: jmmec

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 04:44 PM

Where is the evidence proving that you and Colleen_500 are not one and the same? I stand by my suspicion until I see evidence to the contrary.

Both of you have demonstrated a warped passion to degrade and attack others. This forum is replete with evidence; although there is much more vitriol from the "snazzyplayer" account.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 04:56 PM

Originally Posted By: jmmec
Where is the evidence proving that you and Colleen_500 are not one and the same? I stand by my suspicion until I see evidence to the contrary.

Both of you have demonstrated a warped passion to degrade and attack others. This forum is replete with evidence; although there is much more vitriol from the "snazzyplayer" account.



You know, Jane, my dear, I've already been contacted by the moderator, Ken Knapp, and you are in the wrong...and, if I were you, I would refrain from digging a deeper hole than you've dug for yourself already.

Now, own up to your mistake...you realize, accusations such as yours are very serious...so be careful what you say.

Snazzy
Posted by: jmmec

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 04:57 PM

I have not been contacted.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 05:05 PM

I'll have him contact you...don't worry.

Snazzy
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 05:27 PM

Originally Posted By: MarcoM
Originally Posted By: athomik
Considering that the 'Soft' function on an acoustic piano must be either fully on or fully off for it to function correctly, I can't see why you would want an incremental soft pedal on a DP. If you want continous control for the volume on a DP, you get a volume pedal.

I've read pianists mention that with the soft pedal they can slightly engage it to cause the hammers to strike just outside the grooves for additional tonal variations, that is not an on/off kind of usage. Definitely above my skill level, so if any better pianist cares to chime in about this it'd be great...

MarcoM, I remember having this discussion with an open-minded acoustic pianist in the Piano Forum. I'll quote his (or her?) statement below, but you can also check out the whole content of the discussion on this link if you'd like.

from terminaldegree:
"On a well-voiced grand, the una corda pedal shift can be used in gradations to great coloristic effect. I can move the hammers just slightly out of the "grooves", yet close enough to the more densely packed felt to take a bit of "edge" off the sound, or I can press the pedal down fully for a more diffuse sound-- even farther out of the packed grooves. "


So I think there's some merit to your suspicion there. While technically it might have been designed to be on or off (to either strike 3 strings or 2 strings), some people do take into account the fact that it can be manipulated somewhere in between and make use of this gray area as well, even though this use might not have been intended by design in the first place.

However, I think to incorporate something like this into a digital piano would be a bit of a challenge because its use model is not very clearly defined anyway, and the return on investment is probably not worth it, since the soft pedal is not as heavily used like the sustain pedal after all.

I also had another discussion with a different pianist who's also a PW poster, and this person just bought an N3, but already owns an acoustic grand and another DP (a Clavinova) before buying the N3. He told me he likes the N3's una corda a lot because he said it's just like how it is on his acoustic grand. He said on the Clavinova, the una corda just lowers the volume a bit but the timbre doesn't change, while on the N3 the volume is only lowered slightly (more real) and the timbre does change like it's supposed to. He never brought up the issue of the gray area in between so I don't know how he plays his una corda exactly, but maybe more as an on/off as intended.
Posted by: MarcoM

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 05:39 PM

Originally Posted By: Volusiano
MarcoM, I remember having this discussion with an open-minded acoustic pianist in the Piano Forum.


that is where I remember reading about using partial soft pedal for coloristic effects, before then I always thought it'd be on/off as well smile I do think it would be quite easy to incorporate this into a modelled piano (where you'd just vary the hammer felt hardness slightly as a function of how much the soft pedal is engaged) but not nearly as easily on a sample set of course.

Still given that this would come at nearly no-cost (potentiometers are already there, just takes a little bit of software) it would seem like an easy 'future proofing' move on Yamaha's part for something like the Avant Grand...
Posted by: Ken Knapp

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 05:54 PM

Ok, here is the "official word".

I contacted snazzy due to a moderator report and have had conversation with him.

I am satisfied that he and Colleen are two different people.

Let's move on from this, OK? smile

Ken
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 05:56 PM

Originally Posted By: MarcoM
Originally Posted By: Volusiano
MarcoM, I remember having this discussion with an open-minded acoustic pianist in the Piano Forum.


that is where I remember reading about using partial soft pedal for coloristic effects, before then I always thought it'd be on/off as well smile I do think it would be quite easy to incorporate this into a modelled piano (where you'd just vary the hammer felt hardness slightly as a function of how much the soft pedal is engaged) but not nearly as easily on a sample set of course.

Still given that this would come at nearly no-cost (potentiometers are already there, just takes a little bit of software) it would seem like an easy 'future proofing' move on Yamaha's part for something like the Avant Grand...

I agree that this is probably can be implemented a lot more easily on a model technology than on a sample technology. I wouldn't be surprised if the AG incorporates model technology and/or a combination of both model and sample in the future.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 06:09 PM

Originally Posted By: jmmec
I have not been contacted.



You have now. Moderator's reply is above.
Posted by: BB Player

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 08:58 PM

Originally Posted By: jmmec
I have not been contacted.



Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer


You have now. Moderator's reply is above.


How about if you two give it a rest and let everyone resume talking about the N2 vs. Yamaha uprights?
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 09:11 PM

Originally Posted By: BB Player



How about if you two give it a rest and let everyone resume talking about the N2 vs. Yamaha uprights?


Originally Posted By: jmmec



I hope a moderator will investigate. If I'm wrong, then I will apologize.



I've done my part, and I'm finished with it...the moderator who contacted me was was polite, efficent, and a great help.

Time will tell if jmmec is as good with apologies as she was with accusations.

Snazzy
Posted by: jmmec

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/08/10 11:28 PM

Snazzy, I sincerely apologize for my accusation, although I remain deeply troubled by your behavior towards other members of PianoWorld.

I'd also like to apologize for being partially responsible for taking this topic off course. The time wasted could have been better used for meaningful pursuits.

Regards
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/09/10 02:39 AM

Originally Posted By: jmmec
Snazzy, I sincerely apologize for my accusation, although I remain deeply troubled by your behavior towards other members of PianoWorld.

Regards


Well Justin, I sincerely appreciate, and accept, your apology, although I remain deeply troubled at your quickness to judge innocent people like Colleen and myself, especially on a public forum, and in front of our friends and other members in good standing of this fine site, Piano World.

Now, let's please move on and enjoy this excellent topic, and, also, to the group, my deepest expressions of regret for having to endure these off-topic posts.

Best Regards,

Snazzy

Posted by: 4evrBeginR

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/09/10 04:58 PM

Originally Posted By: Karnevil
Hi!

What are you thoughts on the playability/key action, sound, note-seperation/clarity, detail/nuances concerning the AvantGrand N2, and a similar priced Yamaha upright, acoustic piano?

Piano will be used for both classical stuff and jazz.

Thanks! smile


As someone who has both the AG and a new Yamaha acoustic grand, I have to say this is no easy question.

Some of my observation about the Avant-Grand is the Piano 1 voice has excellent Yamaha concert voicing for classical and Piano 2 has the benchmark Yamaha voicing for Jazz. My brother in law is a Jazz musician and when he play our AG recently (Piano 1), he was a bit disappointed saying things like "too mellow", "no edge to the sound", then I switch the AG to Piano 2, and he kept saying "amazing", "wonderful", "I love this sound". To be honest, I personally can't stand Piano 2, because I'm a classical person.

Another observation is that this weekend I switch the tuning temperament from "equal" to "Bach-Beethoven" (that's not the name, but whatever that setting is in manual for Bach to Beethoven era) and the result was incredible. When you play scale, it sounds to me exactly like equal but when you start playing music, the sound is so different you think you've got a completely different instrument. Some of the typical baroque stuff that composers uses disharmony and resolve sound very different using this temperament compared to equal. I played the same things over and over using both and OMG what are most people missing because they cannot hear this difference. Everybody is using equal on their acoustic piano and they are missing something so great. Then, at the touch of a switch, change the tuning back to equal temperament for your Chopin.

The Avant-Grand is not an acoustic piano. It does not have all the idiosyncrasies of an acoustic grand piano. If you love these idiosyncrasies, then you will not want one. But you ask yourself how often do acoustic idiosyncrasies come into play in playing real music? Are you one of these people that sits in the middle of the night at the piano, play one note every 15 second and go goo goo ga ga over the sound and vibration coming out of that magical box? If so you need an acoustic piano, really.

While attending my children's lessons yesterday, the piano teacher said "I could hear you pushing on the keys", "I want you to drop you arm, not push". Could he hear differences like those on the Avant-Grand? I mean if your technique is wrong because you are an average 7-year-old, could you learn the right technique for the Etude in Dm by Gurlitt? I would say probably not. For that you need an acoustic piano. In fact, the teacher showed my daughter how to play the same Etude with its repetitive right hand chords on an upright and a grand piano because the technique are slightly different. To compound this, because my daughter practice on a Yamaha acoustic grand at home, when she played on the teacher's Kawai RX2, it sounded sloppy, because the action is different and she didn't know to make the proper adjustments. It sounded better but also a little sloppy on his Yamaha C7. On his upright, no sound came out (repeating chords) at all, or just every other or third chord because her movements were not sufficient to make the upright action to repeat a tone. The teacher's words are "as a pianist, you must learn to play well on all pianos, not just yours at home."

Given all this, if you are already an intermediate to advance pianist and is already able to cope with different pianos to make the proper tones, then the Avant Grand is an excellent alternative that does much more. If you are very young or a beginner (though I feel many teachers are not as strict with adult beginners as they are with young children when it comes to technique) and need to learn how to get the right tone using right technique, then digital pianos are generally far more forgiving than an acoustic piano. I have yet played any digital piano that could produce a sloppy lazy tone when played with the wrong technique. It is just not possible. A digital piano is not capable of sounding sloppy. Everything coming out of a digital piano is good, clean, sounding tone no matter how you play it.

The Avant Grand is the least forgiving of all digitals I've tried, but still it is far more forgiving than our acoustic grand. I'm a pretty mediocre pianist, and on our acoustic grand, often I try so hard to soften the left hand that I drop notes. I notice I was doing that a little too on the AG but not as many notes get dropped. There is one piece I play where there's one passage marked ppp. The AG is the only one so far that behave close enough to an acoustic grand where I actually still drop some notes because I don't have the control a good pianist has when it comes to play really soft.

I'm not sure if all this rambling makes any sense to everyone, but hope it helps in comparing an acoustic piano to the Avant Grand.
Posted by: snazzyplayer

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/09/10 05:22 PM

Great post, 4evr88, and some excellent observations.

I've been playing for so long, I'm glad to be rid of the idiosyncrasies (thank goodness for spell-checker) of an acoustic grand...heck, I didn't like my old CP-80M electric grand much either, but back when I was performing, it was the only "portable" (if you call about 320 lbs portable) piano other than a Helpenstill.

I'm the perfect candidate for the type of digital piano that is the Avant Grand...I'm lazy, so I want it to sound perfect every time, I'm stingy, so I don't want piano tuners taking my money, and my ears just can't stand to hear a piano drift slowly out of tune with itself and the other instruments around it.

But, yes, there are those who love the idiosyncrasies of an acoustic, as well as those who just love playing one and basking in the sound...I've got a Steinway B for that, but I rarely play it anymore, mainly for the reasons I stated previously.

You are so right about digital pianos being so forgiving, but since I have developed, over my 50 or so years of playing, a multitude of "technique sins", I kinda yearn for forgiveness a lot more than I used to. wink

As I said already...your post is excellent and well presented....there's no rambling that I can see.

Snazzy

Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/09/10 05:28 PM

I think your point about the ability to switch to different temperaments at the push of a button is so cool, it's like discovering a hidden treasure right under your nose that you never knew you have. I'm definitely going to try out different temperaments other than the equal one that I've been sticking with so far for sure now.

I think there's a lot of stereotyping from the acoustic camp that the Avant Grand is just another mere digital, therefore unworthy as a competition to an acoustic. Then on the other hand, the stereotyping from the digital camp is that the Avant Grand is an highly overpriced digital unworthy of delivering sufficient values to justify its high price. Your observation about the Avant Grand being forgiving enough, yet not overly forgiving, helps show an example to clarify why it offers unique values that incorporate the best of both worlds, and thus has a unique and attractive standing in the market place where neither the average DP nor the average AP can fulfill.
Posted by: 4evrBeginR

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/10/10 02:13 AM

To get another temperament, just press Function then C5 on the keyboard for equal temperament and the other keys in that octave for the other temperaments. The display should say '6' for the Bach temperament. You have got to try it. It's one of these 'oh wow' moments when you play a baroque piece hearing it in this temperament.
Posted by: Karnevil

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/10/10 07:50 AM

Thanks for some really interesting insights on the avantgrand vs. real grands. Great reading! I really appreciate it.
Posted by: nan

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/10/10 07:20 PM

Reading over the comments and especially 4evr88 above, makes me think the AG is much superior to other Yamaha digitals. As I mentioned in a previous thread, I've got a 990 clp and wondered how it compares to the AG. What I'm wondering now is the keyboard as 4ever88 describes it sounds really superior to mine. The 990 is very good but it's also stiff and I don't notice much difference between the touch settings on the 990. What I don't like on the 990 are the pedals and how it sounds without the headphones. Be interested to hear comments on the comparisons.
Posted by: 4evrBeginR

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/10/10 11:19 PM

Yeah, the Avant-Grand has a real grand piano action. That's either the most brilliant thing Yamaha did or the engineers simply threw up their hands and said why not just use a real wooden acoustic grand piano action they have been making for 100 years instead of trying so hard to simulate one. Having the TRS system to vibrate the keys is nice, since the hammers strike some rod instead of vibrating strings. The pedals are build just like an acoustic grand with its string and levers at the buttom of the piano. It's so cool; only if the keyboard would shift to the right with the una corda pedal. Maybe that messes up the alignment of the optical sensors.

The Avant Grand only has 5 voices compared to the CLP-990's 25. Technically, the full 88-note sampling are much more sophisticated than the CLP-990, but of course the CLP-990 is probably more fun with marimba, vibraphone and so many other instrument voices. The AG is a piano. I don't think it's more sophisticated than other Yamaha digitals at all. The CVP products are amazing, which the AG just can't compare. Also, the AG doesn't have Internet connectivity and its keys do not move by themselves when playing back something like the Modus F11.
Posted by: athomik

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 04/13/10 05:08 AM

Originally Posted By: 4evr88
Yeah, the Avant-Grand has a real grand piano action. That's either the most brilliant thing Yamaha did or the engineers simply threw up their hands and said why not just use a real wooden acoustic grand piano action they have been making for 100 years instead of trying so hard to simulate one.


Yamaha have been making digital pianos with wooden piano actions since 1996. The GranTouch range came as plain digital pianos (Grand & Upright) as well as Disklavier type pianos. The concept of the action was very similar to that found on the Avant Grand, although it has been developed further for the AG to make it even closer to an acoustic grand piano action.
Posted by: B. Michels

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 11/29/10 11:47 AM

Originally Posted By: polygon
Originally Posted By: snazzyplayer
[quote=Volusiano]

I await the next generation N-series,....


NAMM 2011? wink



Any more recent news about this "NEW VERSION" of AvantGrand ? I really don't want to buy one now and hear few weeks after about it's successor !
Posted by: athomik

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 11/30/10 10:07 AM

As polygon sez: NAMM2011 wink
Posted by: Melodialworks Music

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 11/30/10 07:50 PM

And I was assured when I purchased my N3 this past summer that there would NOT be any new AvantGrand offerings at NAMM 2011. Time will tell!
Posted by: jeff749z

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/01/10 09:10 PM

I was just thinking this tonight. However, the sound and experience of playing and writing on Avant Grand is as close as it gets. I prefer it over any upright I've ever played and most real grands. It is the best. I've owned it for 6 months now.
Posted by: jeff749z

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/01/10 09:13 PM

Originally Posted By: 4evr88
Yeah, the Avant-Grand has a real grand piano action. That's either the most brilliant thing Yamaha did or the engineers simply threw up their hands and said why not just use a real wooden acoustic grand piano action they have been making for 100 years instead of trying so hard to simulate one. Having the TRS system to vibrate the keys is nice, since the hammers strike some rod instead of vibrating strings. The pedals are build just like an acoustic grand with its string and levers at the buttom of the piano. It's so cool; only if the keyboard would shift to the right with the una corda pedal. Maybe that messes up the alignment of the optical sensors.

The Avant Grand only has 5 voices compared to the CLP-990's 25. Technically, the full 88-note sampling are much more sophisticated than the CLP-990, but of course the CLP-990 is probably more fun with marimba, vibraphone and so many other instrument voices. The AG is a piano. I don't think it's more sophisticated than other Yamaha digitals at all. The CVP products are amazing, which the AG just can't compare. Also, the AG doesn't have Internet connectivity and its keys do not move by themselves when playing back something like the Modus F11.


The four channel sampling differentiates it from all the rest.
Posted by: B. Michels

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/02/10 01:57 PM

Now I'm getting nervous tbuying a N2 or N3: A large french dealer told me that he cannot get anymore N2 or N3 from Yamaha because they will be replaced them in february, and that he saw the prototype of the N1, which is supposed to be the less expensive of the 3 models. The guy said that he saw it and that is is a "small N2" with a simplified piano mechanism action.

I am just wondering if this NEW model will have a NEW sound database, and if therefore the 2 older models may also have their sound database updated. (with the new modeling technology used in the CP1 ?)

I'm really nervous buying a N2 or N3 now and then, 1 month later, hearing about a new or updated version :-(
Posted by: MacMacMac

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/02/10 02:10 PM

Why would Yamaha not want to sell more of these low-volume, high-priced units?

If a salesman said that he cannot get them anymore, it makes me wonder about that dealer.

I wouldn't worry about a (putative) new model coming out. There will always be a new model. Maybe you could use the new model release to help you get a better price on the "old" model ... if you can find one.
Posted by: Melodialworks Music

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/02/10 06:17 PM

My understanding is that the N2 and N3 models are selling reasonably well. There is basically no competition - if you want an acoustic action in a digital - this is the way to go.
Posted by: MacMacMac

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/02/10 10:43 PM

Have you seen any sales figures?
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/02/10 11:47 PM

Originally Posted By: MacMacMac
Have you seen any sales figures?
I don't have any sales figures but I ran into the salesman that sold me my N3 a few months ago and he said that he's been able to sell several N2 and N3 after he sold his first N3 to me. He has no problem moving them. And they've been out only a little more than a year.
Posted by: Volusiano

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/03/10 12:00 AM

Originally Posted By: B. Michels
Now I'm getting nervous tbuying a N2 or N3: A large french dealer told me that he cannot get anymore N2 or N3 from Yamaha because they will be replaced them in february, and that he saw the prototype of the N1, which is supposed to be the less expensive of the 3 models. The guy said that he saw it and that is is a "small N2" with a simplified piano mechanism action.

I am just wondering if this NEW model will have a NEW sound database, and if therefore the 2 older models may also have their sound database updated. (with the new modeling technology used in the CP1 ?)

I'm really nervous buying a N2 or N3 now and then, 1 month later, hearing about a new or updated version :-(
I can see Yamaha coming out with an N1 that is a smaller/less expensive version of the N2 and N3. Just by looking at the way they name/number them, it's almost as if the N1 has already been part of the original plan all along, just with a much later release date.

If this is the case, the N1 is probably not intended as a replacement for the N2 or N3, but only as a supplement to fill the gap in the lower price market between $5K-$10K. As thus, there's probably not going to be much ground breaking update in the new release. This is just my guess, of course.

I seriously doubt that they would discontinue the N2 and N3 only a year or so after their introduction and replace them altogether with an inferior and cheaper N1. It doesn't make any sense since they've spent years of R&D money to develop the technology and deliver these products. So why discontinue something so soon and not try to milk the fruit of your labor as much as you can?

Maybe your French dealer cannot get the N2 or N3 anymore from Yamaha because he's already sold off all his allowed quota of those units, and he doesn't want you to take your business elsewhere, so he's just saying that so you will wait on the N1 and buy the N1 from him. I would go ask other dealers in the area at least to confirm his story first before I believe him.

If I were you, I would sit tight and wait for more news before making a purchase decision. It's just too muddy right now and I agree that you don't want to have buyer's remorse if you act hastily.
Posted by: B. Michels

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/04/10 05:40 PM

Well, here is another dealer, German this time, that show "CATALOG SUSPENDED" for the Avantgrand !???

http://www.organstudio.co.uk/acatalog/avantgrand.html

Intriguing isn't it ????
Posted by: Kawai James

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/04/10 05:46 PM

That's a UK company, based in Edinburgh, Scotland, not Germany.

Moreover, the website is clearly out of date - as indicated by the text in the top left:

Quote:
Edinburgh Organ Studio is now called Key Player

This website is no longer live - Please visit our new website

www.key-player.co.uk


The respective Avant Grand N3 page on the new website simply lists the instrument as 'Out of Stock' - not 'Discontinued'.

Cheers,
James
x
Posted by: MacMacMac

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/04/10 06:30 PM

Every single product on http://www.organstudio.co.uk/acatalog/avantgrand.html is marked CATALOG SUSPENDED, not just the AG. smile
Posted by: Melodialworks Music

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/04/10 08:46 PM

What does "CATALOG SUSPENDED" suspended even mean?
Posted by: MacMacMac

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/05/10 10:01 AM

I guess it means that the catalog of goods is no longer active. That is, you can't buy their stuff anymore. (Why don't they just take down that web site???)
Posted by: jivemutha

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/06/11 10:29 PM

I've had the AG experience twice--once with an N3 and once with an N2. I played them completely ignorant of the fact that they were supposed to be the latest hottest thing.

Through Bose headphones the N3 sounded great. (I never got to try the N2 with headphones). Through their speakers (as opposed to headphones) it was clear that both sounded way better than a P95, etc. Unquestionably the technology is improving!

However, without being told how terrific they were supposed to be, they still sounded like a recording of a piano, albeit a great one. To my ear, something was still missing.

My circumstances demanded the need for headphone playing(apartment setting). In the end I got a silent U3 (U3SG). When the headphones are unplugged, it sounds like a real piano--not the best piano, but a real piano. It's like the difference between being in the presence of a pretty girl versus looking at a poster of Michelle Pfeiffer.

From this thread it's clear we all hear sound a little differently. We want our subjective impression to be supported by evidence but in the end it ain't so. Perhaps it's best that we go with our own ears rather than be swayed by the words of others. When we play, whether it's on an AG or a Yamaha upright, it's only through our own ears that we get to hear the music.
Posted by: kippesc

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/06/11 10:48 PM

Did you try the $1,500 to $2,500 Roland Supernaturals (good sound)? Did you try the Kawai MP10 or CA93 (great action)? Did you plug those keyboards into a software piano and use headphones of high quality (not Bose, which I do own)? The U3 is fine. But I once owned a U5, and I'm not sure I miss it. When I do, I just load up the Ivory II U5 and refresh my memory -- using Sennheiser HD-600s.
Posted by: 36251

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/07/11 12:13 AM

Originally Posted By: jivemutha
It's like the difference between being in the presence of a pretty girl versus looking at a poster of Michelle Pfeiffer.


I've owned my N2 for a couple weeks now and I have a different take on your analogy. I gave up one of the best sounding uprights (steinway K) for the AG and too me the AG is like being involved with the pretty woman versus only sitting next to a pretty woman (the K.)

The K might of sounded great but the action did not inspire me like the AG always seems to do. I easily get lost in the presence of the experience of playing the real thing that gets tuned before each gig. Let's face it when you record in a studio or play in a large venue you hear the piano through monitors and not acoustically. The AG is like playing a gig at Town Hall with a trio.

I'll also never regret owning the Steinway either, cause it's a great instrument that I was able to use for many years and still got my investment back, which allowed me to buy the expensive AG. I know the AG won't hold its value as well but who cares if it makes me a better pianist.
Posted by: Dave Horne

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 12/07/11 06:12 AM

I know the AG won't hold its value as well but who cares if it makes me a better pianist.

Wait five years until the next generation is introduced and trade in your N2. You might be surprised how much you receive.

I was amazed how much the dealer gave me for my 12 year old GranTouch. Pianos for me are just tools to get the job done, I don't have a relationship with them. Love them and leave them.
Posted by: pv88

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 08/15/13 06:30 AM

Originally Posted By: 4evrBeginR
The Avant Grand only has 5 voices compared to the CLP-990's 25. Technically, the full 88-note sampling are much more sophisticated than the CLP-990 ...


Just so everyone knows the older CLP-990 also has "88-note sampling" just like the AvantGrand and I happen to like the main "Grand Piano 1" sound in the 990 better than any digital I have played on so far.

And, as for "nan" above I think that one has to try the AvantGrand themselves to determine if they might like model "A" over "B." Since I also own a CLP-990M (which has a very good piano sound and action) it certainly would be okay if "nan" decides to keep the CLP-990 as well.

I know of one other member here (i.e., Kona_V-Piano) who prefers the sound of the CLP-990 over the AvantGrand N3. This may be a subjective opinion although every player is free to choose what they like best.
Posted by: Pete14

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 08/15/13 07:11 AM

I believe that preferring one piano (sound) over another is subjective... only to a certain degree. I don't know of many people who would prefer the sound of a $6,000 grand over a Steinway B. The fact that many people prefer the sound and action of the CLP 990 over newer, more expensive YAMAHA models says a lot in terms of how YAMAHA has been watering-down their products. The AVANTGRAND is good; however, it could've been better: Physical modeling, 6-footer action, damper-mechanism simulation, etc... I believe that once KAWAI and Roland went 88 (key-sampling) they never went back to stretching, yet YAMAHA did; CLP 990: 88. CLP 380/480: not!
Posted by: Michael_99

Re: Yamaha AvantGrand N2 vs. similar priced Yamaha upright? - 08/16/13 06:26 AM

Karnevil, I have read your post, here:

What are you thoughts on the playability/key action, sound, note-seperation/clarity, detail/nuances concerning the AvantGrand N2, and a similar priced Yamaha upright, acoustic piano?

Piano will be used for both classical stuff and jazz.

Thanks!

________________________________________________

I am a beginner - so you will be guided by the opinions of advanced piano players.

The questions to ask yourself are:

Have you played an acoustic piano?

Have you played a digital piano with weighted keys?

Are acoustic pianos and digital pianos with weighted keys remotely the same?

You can play jazz and classical music on any kind of piano - even broken pianos - but the question to ask yourself is: If I want to be a professional musician, how good of a piano do I need to play everyday as a student and as a professional musician.