Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP!

Posted by: SkierDude

Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 05:38 PM

Hi, I’m new to the form, but have spent several weeks checking it out. I have a question about the Casio PX850. I’m having some difficulty wrapping my head around the fact that the company that made nearly every electronic toy piano, watch, calculator, etc. I had growing up is making a viable and durable entry into the digital piano market. The 18-minute youtube review on it is very compelling. I’ve read/heard good things about the AP640 too.

My issue is this: With help from family I may be able to get to a $2000 - $2500 price point (otherwise I'm at $1200). My criteria are, in order: 1) realistic action, 2) realistic sound, 3) nice console/cabinet (defined as Yamaha CLP/Arius, Roland HP…), and 4) a strong and durable console (my wife and I are unlikely to have romance on it but we do have children and pets and aren’t the most gentle on things). #3 and 4 may be tied, actually.

I played the CLP series, the base model is just in my price range. I liked the 440 a little better, I think. I don’t like buying base models in product lineups, but that’s my issue. I kind liked the Arius 141, but thought it was overpriced and was limited in comparison to what other pianos offer.

I played the Roland pf7f too. I know, it’s older technology, but I really liked it. The action felt like home to me (unlike the heavier Yamahas, which we’d get used to). I found a new, in-box HP307, which I believe is the same as the pf7f, just outside the upper extreme of my price limit. (an aside, any thoughts on a realistic price on the HP307? The seller says MSRP was $5-6K, usually sold for $4K, he wants $3K… I think he’s pulling my leg).

I’ve read a lot of great things about the Kawai CE220, Casio PX850 (not a fan of how it looks but reviews are great), and the Casio AP640.

I’ve been told that, even though is very low in my price range, the Casio PX850 is worth serious consideration because it has a lot of current technology and will easily meet criteria 1 and 2 for a low price. I really don’t like how it looks, but appearance is only skin deep, isn’t it?

My struggle is this: get the less expensive but current technology from a company that is trying to rid themselves of the reputation as a toy company (Casio PX850 or AP640), or older technology from an established company and is more expensive (Kawai CE220, Roland HP307).

The use of the piano is: 9-yr old son just beginning, wife experienced but not really picky if it looks/sounds like a piano, I’m experienced and picky but grew up with uprights so escapement isn’t important. Mainly, it’ll be an all-around general use piano that will hopefully last many years (or more) for all levels of ability.

I feel like I’ve done my homework on this, and could use some final guidance.

Thoughts?

Thanks.
Posted by: EssBrace

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 06:13 PM

Originally Posted By: SkierDude
I’ve been told that, even though is very low in my price range, the Casio PX850 is worth serious consideration because it has a lot of current technology and will easily meet criteria 1 and 2 for a low price. I really don’t like how it looks, but appearance is only skin deep, isn’t it?


Told by whom? I read your other post and you mentioned azpianonews. This website is a sales vehicle for Tim Praskins, self-appointed "piano expert" and "adviser to the public".

He just sells Casio digital pianos. That's it. That's his business. Although he dresses it up as "independent" advice, which is completely unacceptable in my view.

I've nothing against the Casio - it will be great value for money. But you get what you pay for. It will be inferior to many other DPs (most of which will be more expensive though). The FP-7F you mention is not older technology, it is arguably more advanced than anything else you mentioned. If you like the Roland action and sound and want a decent console then the HP-307 could well be a good choice. If you are doubtful about the price of the boxed one you have been offered (of this now obsolete model) check out the "prices paid" thread on this forum - 13 members have posted the price they paid for that exact model. Bear in mind that the 307 you are looking at will have considerably lower value than when it was a current model though.

Good luck,

Steve
Posted by: SkierDude

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 06:46 PM

Hey, thanks for the info. I didn't know he only sold Casios. I thought he sold other brands as well. He does recommend other brands, so I thought he sold them too.

I might call him and ask directly, then ask how he considers himself unbiased.

I've seen posts on this site where the answer was "get the PX850", which I considered a good thing. But, the old adage may ring true: if it's too good to be true, it probably is. The 850 might be great, but for that price level.

Actually, as I look back, the "get the PX850" replies were based on measurements or price limitations... and also for beginners.

Thoughts on the CE220? I'd rather not max out my price point. Problem is, I haven't played (and can't get access to) a CE220.

Thanks!
Posted by: SkierDude

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 06:51 PM

How do you get the "prices paid" for a model without scrolling through 23 pages of posts? Is there a way to type in a model number and get a list?
Thanks.
Posted by: MacMacMac

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 06:55 PM

Try this listing on Google Docs
Posted by: Kawai James

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 06:59 PM

Originally Posted By: SkierDude
Thoughts on the CE220? I'd rather not max out my price point. Problem is, I haven't played (and can't get access to) a CE220.


The CE220 is popular mid-range piano sold through online stores such as Musicians' Friend, Sweetwater, etc. It features a nice wooden key action and good quality 88-key sampled piano sounds. While the CE220 does not utilise the latest and greatest technology from the CA and CN ranges (sold through Kawai piano dealers), it offers a good all-round package at an attractive price.

If you're having difficulty finding a Kawai dealer in your area, please use the online dealer locator, or contact Kawai America directly.

Kind regards,
James
x
Posted by: SkierDude

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 07:06 PM

Oops, sorry for all these posts. In my price range, does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks.
Posted by: KLSinCT

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 08:23 PM

Originally Posted By: Kawai James
Originally Posted By: SkierDude
Thoughts on the CE220? I'd rather not max out my price point. Problem is, I haven't played (and can't get access to) a CE220.


The CE220 is popular mid-range piano sold through online stores such as Musicians' Friend, Sweetwater, etc. It features a nice wooden key action and good quality 88-key sampled piano sounds. While the CE220 does not utilise the latest and greatest technology from the CA and CN ranges (sold through Kawai piano dealers), it offers a good all-round package at an attractive price.

If you're having difficulty finding a Kawai dealer in your area, please use the online dealer locator, or contact Kawai America directly.

Kind regards,
James
x


+1 This is very sound advice! I test-played a CE220 earlier this year and would have bought it had I not found such a great deal on my Roland FP-7F. However, my next DP will be a Kawai if they upgrade the MP10 with the new GF wooden action and the best piano sound samples.

K.
Posted by: SkierDude

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 09:01 PM

azpiano guy says he does Kawai too, but none avail until late Jan. But I'd have the Casio in under 2 wks. Hmmm...

Anyway, I guess I'm leaning towards the CE220. I haven't been able to see or play it, there's no dealer close to me.

Is the console durable or is it cheap pressed wood?

How might it compare to the HP307 if I can get funding together? I'd guess the action on the Kawai would be a little heavier. I'd guess the sound is good on both, HP307 more options maybe? Since the HP307 is higher end, is it safe to say the console is also better, or is most of the money going into the piano?

Thanks.
Posted by: gvfarns

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 10:11 PM

As EssBrace says, the FP7F is far more advanced than the Casios you mention. Digital piano technology does not move forward at anywhere near the pace we are used to in other areas of technology. As such, all the models you mention are in the same technological generation and quality/price is a better indicator than release date. The Kawai and Roland you mention are very fine instruments and will likely have an advantage in terms of authenticity, which in digital pianos is king. The Roland HP307 seems to have the same action and similar tone engine to the FP7F, so it's probably a great piano (I haven't played it but I have played the FP7F). My beef with Roland is that they tend to cost a lot, even for what you get. That's my personal feeling.

My feeling about Casio is that it delivers very well on the low end, but if you are looking at $2K and above pianos I think you can safely leave the brand behind. The Yamaha, Kawai, and Roland options in higher end models are better. Can't you get one of the Kawai CA line in that price range?

Posted by: Kawai James

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 10:52 PM

SkierDude, please bear in mind that the HP-307 was Roland's top-of-the-range HP model this time last year - by all accounts, it's still an excellent digital piano.

Cheers,
James
x
Posted by: personne

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/03/12 11:25 PM

Where are you?
I am in Canada, the asking price for HP-307 is 2900-3300, probably you can get it lower, they ask 4000-4300 for a newer HP-507 model, taxes are extra.

3000 does not seem too high, but you can still try to bargain.

You can also try HP-505 - it costs arrpoximately as HP-307.

Posted by: Marco M

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/04/12 03:03 AM

Search for the new Roland HP-505 (but not a 503) instead of the HP-307! It has the very best Roland action available, like the last years top-model 307, and additionally has improved pedal electronics in comparison to the 307. Furthermore it has newer (enhanced) options in the electronics, i.e. for connectivity to other instruments, USB availability with the option to connect by WiFi to an iPad for instance. Also check for differences in the MIDI implemantation or inbuilt recorder. I right now don´t remember the details, but you will find them if comparing the manuals of the 505 and 307 which you can find on the Roland US homepage. Well, I decided for the 505 and not the 307.
Posted by: SkierDude

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/04/12 03:05 PM

Thanks, I'll look into it, though I fear it'll be way out of my price range.

Interesting, I was just telling my brother that my (probably all of us) conception of spending is weird. I spent a ton of money on a 13-day family vaca this past summer. Yet, spending 1/3 that on a high end DP that will last many, many (and more) years seems overkill.
Posted by: SkierDude

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/04/12 03:06 PM

Great to know. Thanks.
Posted by: SkierDude

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/04/12 03:08 PM

+1 This is very sound advice! I test-played a CE220 earlier this year and would have bought it had I not found such a great deal on my Roland FP-7F. However, my next DP will be a Kawai if they upgrade the MP10 with the new GF wooden action and the best piano sound samples.

K.
[/quote]

I glanced at your website. You appear to know your stuff (as most of you do here). To read that you considered the CE220 over others says a lot about the CE220.

Maybe that's the way to go.
Posted by: SkierDude

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/04/12 06:15 PM

wireless sounds great. I then looked it up and saw it's another $50 item. But, when spending $3K+ what's another 50?

Lowest offer on the 505 is $3350 incl. tax and delivery. This is pretty steep for me, especially since I started at the $1500 price point. I jumped to $2000 to include the CE220, then played a Roland pf7f... I guess I need to stop trying pianos. LOL!

Anyway, the best price I got on the 307 was $3100 incl shipping. It sounds like the extra bit for the 505 is worth it, if I can get the cash lined up.

I'd still love to read more objective things about the CE220...

Tell me about the Kawai CA series. I thought the 95 was $4000+
Posted by: bluebilly

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/08/12 03:10 AM

Originally Posted By: SkierDude
My struggle is this: get the less expensive but current technology from a company that is trying to rid themselves of the reputation as a toy company (Casio PX850 or AP640), or older technology from an established company and is more expensive (Kawai CE220, Roland HP307).

Casio have been making keyboards for 30 years, and DPs since 1986. I think they shed the toy maker image long ago.

CASIO MUSICAL INSTRUMENT HISTORY

Yamaha also make Motorbikes and Outboard Engines......??
-
Posted by: Kos

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/08/12 03:15 AM

Originally Posted By: bluebilly
I think they shed the toy maker image long ago.

Too bad their quality couldn't keep up.
Posted by: bluebilly

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/08/12 03:28 AM

Originally Posted By: Kos
Originally Posted By: bluebilly
I think they shed the toy maker image long ago.

Too bad their quality couldn't keep up.

I see more quality issues against other DP manufacturers on this forum than I do against Casio.
Posted by: Acca

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 12/08/12 03:31 AM

The Kawai CA65 @$3k (see prices paid) is the cheaper version of the CA95 and has the latest Grand Feel keyboard. I just tested it today and in my opinion is one of the more authentic feeling keyboards, better than the Rolands, far better than Yamaha and Casio. But $3K may be pushing it for your budget. Have a try of Kawai models with the RM3 keyboard which is the predecessor and by all accounts pretty good too. You should be able to get something with that for less than $2k.
Posted by: playmeasong

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 02/03/13 02:01 AM

OP - Did you buy a piano yet?

I plan to buy soon and am considering the EXACT 2 models (Casio px850 and Kawai CE220 you mostly talked about.

Had my mind set on Kawai (none of the Yamaha's I've tried in the lower price range -$2500 and under- can touch Kawai in my opinion), but after reading up and watching video on the Casio px850 I thought maybe that's the way to go. The few reviews on Amazon.com are great, and the price is tempting (love the look as well). But I'm really hesitant to buy if I can't try it first.

I like the Kawai CN series. Was also able to try the CA63 which I loved but $2600 was more than I wanted to dish out............ But lately I've thought about going with the CE220. Haven't played it but have heard good things and like the idea of the wooden keys. Feel pretty positive it'd make me happy. Too bad the cabinet isn't as sleek as say, the CN33...

I'm not a very experienced player. Never learned to read music frown and only play by ear... but my ear is PICKY so I want as close to a real acoustic piano touch & sound as I can get in the $2000 / under range.

Would LOOOOOOOVE to have a Yamaha NU1 (was able to try that one too, ONLY Yamaha digital I've liked). Super impressive but sadly unaffordable.

Anyway, really interested to know if you've decided on one. And to hear from anyone who's bought the Casio px850.
Posted by: dugkeys

Re: Casio PX850 or Roland HP307 or Kawai CE220... HELP! - 09/12/13 03:23 PM

I just bought the Casio PX-850 and assembled it yesterday. I agree that it has very nice sound for the price point. As part of a church worship band I've played the Roland Fantom x-88 and the Yamaha MOTIF XF8 - love those machines but out of my price range and my wife insists that keyboard needs to look like furniture.

The Casio is a nice little keyboard but I'm frustrated with one thing... the damper (sustain) works nicely for the lower part of the keyboard into the middle but the higher notes seem to decay really fast even with the pedal fully depressed. I've been reading and heard that unless you are paying $2000 or more, not to expect better. Another post talked about a parameter I should try changing.

I knew I was buying a machine much less capable than what I'm used to but this particular issue is really bugging me. Hoping to find a resolution or I will be unsatisfied with my purchase.