Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is...

Posted by: Matt Peckham

Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 09/16/11 01:37 PM

...kind of amazing, actually. I'm shocked by how much I'm digging it, the first hour in. I'd half-expected it to feel cheap and plasticky or side-to-side wobbly somehow, but instead it actually feels surprisingly piano-like (though I see where the electromechanical MkV comparisons are coming from).

And--celebration time--it's relatively heavy. Much heavier than I'd imagined it might be for something this light. The throw's indeed a trifle shorter than a more AP-like action, and the subtler, softer bottom-out feel I get playing most APs (as well as my MP10) isn't there--the E3HP's bottom is definitely more final--but the general feel is much more AP-like than I'd hoped it would be. I blame my low expectations! smile

As for key noise, it's actually not bad--more of a thudding sound than the clicks on my (former) SV-1. The SV-1's key bed was less even, too, and the E3HP's is almost perfectly symmetric, key to key. I think the reason some call this a noisier key bed is that there's the thud on depress, but also a kind of snapping sound when the key releases back. I just tried that on my MP10, and the action is completely (and I mean completely) silent on key release. So you're generating roughly twice as much noise for every key that's depressed and fully released on the E3HP. Again, not a big deal for me, because we're talking bass thuds, not jarring treble clicks.

Not a review of the board yet--I'm a Nord n00b, so miles to go before I so much as scratch the surface of the sound engine--but a very warm and frankly surprised reaction to the key bed. Very glad I gave it a go, as my alternative pick, the completely respectable but designed-for-other-uses Kawai MP6, would have been roughly twice as heavy.
Posted by: liv3evil

Re: Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 09/16/11 01:54 PM

Thanks for the info/write-up! I have a 3HP on the way; should arrive next week!! \../
Posted by: anotherscott

Re: Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 09/16/11 01:56 PM

Originally Posted By: Matt Peckham
the subtler, softer bottom-out feel I get playing most APs (as well as my MP10) isn't there--the E3HP's bottom is definitely more final


I think you may have put your finger on why I so dislike the MP10 action... it doesn't have a solid enough bottom. In my experience, real pianos have a more clearly final bottoming. I'm not saying jarringly rock-hard, but really quite solid. By comparison, the bottom of the MP-10 feels mushy to me, it doesn't work for me at all. Yet clearly, many people love it!

edit: and I'm not at all surprised that you found the action to feel heavier then you thought it would. ;-)
Posted by: PianoZac

Re: Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 09/16/11 01:56 PM

Heck yeah Matt! Stoked for you. I played the NE3HP yet again yesterday during a 2 hour visit to my favorite local music store here in Nashville. I was digging the action big time. It felt very close to my NP88. I'm seriously considering picking up one.

I know exactly what you're talking about in regards to the key clicking on the SV-1. The Nords are noisy in a thuddy manner whereas everytime I've played the dreadful RH3 action, it feels like at any moment the keys are gonna stick or just break. It's a shame cuz the SV-1 73 is one of the coolest boards out there. It sounds great but the action has to go.

I'm gonna do some thinking, and see what I can get out of my NE3 61 with the Nord GB61 Gig bag, and possibly the NP88. Now that I've got a serious DP in my N1, the need for 88 keys isn't as necessary. The biggest reservation I've got is the limited RAM of just 185MB. Of course, I only ever use really at most 2 different piano sounds live, and there's plenty of space for 2 large samples.
Posted by: Dave Ferris

Re: Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 09/16/11 02:45 PM

Congrats Matt!

Wow that was quick. Like I said I was pleasantly surprised at how playable it is for piano. I still prefer the NP action but this will certainly "work".

The rub for me again was I really don't like compromising on the 88 keys.
I play and try to look at the piano from an orchestral viewpoint. Having the 73/76 scale can interrupt my flow, harmonically speaking with regard to voicings and how I interpret different pieces, especially for solo playing.

The smaller scale will give me ever so slight hesitation or pause so I'm basically thinking--where the heck am I here ? confused I know you can get used to it but I don't wanna....I'm already compromising enough playing an electronic keyboard in the first place. wink

But back to the E3 HP. Clavia has obviously hit on something very good here and will be very successful selling a ton of these I'm sure.
Posted by: maurus

Re: Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 09/16/11 02:49 PM

Congratulations Matt! Good that your expectations were a bit low on the keybed ;-)

Welcome to the red club, section 3HP!
Posted by: PianoZac

Re: Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 09/16/11 03:03 PM

Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris


The smaller scale will give me ever so slight hesitation or pause so I'm basically thinking--where the heck am I here ? confused

Good point Dave. This is true. The NE3 61 causes some problems due to its reduced register.
Posted by: Matt Peckham

Re: Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 09/16/11 03:53 PM

Originally Posted By: Dave Ferris
The rub for me again was I really don't like compromising on the 88 keys.I play and try to look at the piano from an orchestral viewpoint. Having the 73/76 scale can interrupt my flow, harmonically speaking with regard to voicings and how I interpret different pieces, especially for solo playing.

The smaller scale will give me ever so slight hesitation or pause so I'm basically thinking--where the heck am I here ? confused I know you can get used to it but I don't wanna....I'm already compromising enough playing an electronic keyboard in the first place. wink


I hear you loud and clear, Dave, and had I not spent so much time already with a 73-key SV-1 last year, I might've felt the same way. Since this is meant to be a combo scratchboard + jazz/blues/funk gigging board for me, and since so much of what interests me classically is from the Baroque period, I think I'm pretty well set, so we'll see how it goes. smile

Update: I'm just grateful Nord opted for a classic Rhodes E to E with the HP, instead of the original 73-key E3's F to F!
Posted by: Kawai James

Re: Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 09/16/11 07:41 PM

Congrats Matt, and welcome to club red!

Yeah, I rather like the idea of the HP too, but will hold onto my original E3 for a little while yet.

I look forward to reading your more detailed review!

Cheers,
James
x
Posted by: keyboardologist

Re: Just received my Nord Electro 3 HP, and the action is... - 04/29/13 06:00 AM

Hello from Athens, Greece.
I know that this is an old thread... but I'm really interested in NE3HP's action.
I have a Studiologic Numa Nano, with the TP100LR as NE3HP, but the Numa Nano's velocities and fast playing is unacceptable for recording or live gigs. I don't have any problem with the bulky feel, but I do have with the real response over the velocities, specially for low passages and fast repeating notes.
I know Clavia is doing some adjustments to the Fatar keyboards it uses,
so as I'm considering buying a used NE3HP for jazz/rock live and midi-recordings.
I don't have any problem going from 88keys down to 73 as I have an upright piano at home for practicing.
I could just go and play and test a NE4HP on a local store but I don't know if the action/response is the same as NE3HP.
As alternatives, I could go for a Korg SV1 which has a good action, but it's too heavy for me... or for a Kurzweil PC3 (76keys version) which although it's semi-weighted and heavy I will have a good action with workstation capabilities.
I always use a second 61keys(semi-keyboard) controller on the upper tier for hammond/strings/synth on live gigs (along with my Roland XV5080 rack or PC2R rack) so I need the NE3HP for pianos/rhodes and home recordings.
Any feedback would be really appreciated!