New Kawai CA65

Posted by: Wonderboydd

New Kawai CA65 - 01/02/13 11:55 PM

First I wanted to say thank you to everyone in the forums here. Though this is my first post, I have been pouring through the posts over the last few weeks and all the information has been very helpful in choosing a digital piano.

I just thought I would share my own experience and what I ended up choosing.

Originally my budget was set around $1000 and was considering a PX-850. Which I think for its price point is a great piano. I was just about ready to seal the deal with a guy at Guitar Center but decided to make a trip to a local Kawai dealer after reading all the info on the boards here from the avid Kawai owners.

I looked at the CE-220 and loved it. The sound was a little thin (probably due to the 40 watt sound system), but the action was amazing. I decided my budget would stretch to at least $1800 to cover it. And - after careful planning I stretched my budget to around $3000.

I read a number of posts about checking all of the brands. I decided to take the trip (about 30 miles) to look at both Roland and Yamaha models.

The sales experience at the Yamaha shop was the worst I ever experienced, but I wont even get into that. Even still I wasnt fully convinced on the Yamaha sound and the action on the CLP-470 was mediocre in my opinion, compared to even the CE-220.

Next I went to the Roland shop and was actually quite impressed with the HP-505. The feel of the key was okay (synthetic ivory), and it had a shorter/shallower action of the key. The sound seemed a little too much in the lower registers, this is a general thing Ive found with Roland products. The tone seemed very warm though. Though, it had the supernatural 'ringy/bangy' sound (I dont know how else to describe it). This really was one of the main contenders in my descision. I talked the salesman to around $3300.

After that I went back to the Kawai shop to look at the CA-65, which I had only briefly played the last time. I ended up choosing the CA-65 while I was there. Got the guy to sell it for $2995 out the door.

The sound is pretty convincing. It is more of a sweet tone in comparison to other brands. The wood keys and synthetic ivory make it feel amazing. The action is a little deep, though I do prefer this myself. Overall the piano has a more oganic feel to it. Each time I play the piano I like it even more than the last.

I would say what sold me was the 'experience' playing the CA-65. It was more than a great sounding piano, it felt right as well.

My only regret is that I could not afford (I could have waited a little longer though) or have in my apartment a CA-95. I played it briefly and WOW! But living in an apartment I cant subject my neighbors to a vibrating floor.
Posted by: 10fingers

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 02:26 AM

Sounds like a great choice for you - congratulations, wonderboydd
Posted by: Kawai James

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 02:52 AM

Indeed, congrats wonderboydd (Sega reference?)!

If you have not done so already, I would recommend checking your piano's firmware and updating to the latest version, if necessary.

Firmware updates can be downloaded from the URL below:

http://www.kawai.co.jp/worldwide/support/updates.html

Kind regards,
James
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Posted by: boyonahill

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 06:05 AM

I'm also tempted to buy a Kawai digital piano.

But these things work against that:

a) I'm a Yamaha "fan" and I like owning Yamaha products, the buying and owning experience (of the brand).

b) Few/None Kawai dealers where I live.

c) Because of b) warranty repairs if they happen will be a pain.

d) Because of c) few people own, know and aspire to own Kawai products - this means when the time comes to sell the Kawai product, I will get very little for the piano, and it will take forever to sell if I don't completely dump the price. Yes you could argue one should buy to keep but I know myself better than that...

Posted by: Kawai James

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 06:21 AM

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
I'm also tempted to buy a Kawai digital piano.


Great!

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
But these things work against that:


Well, let's see if we can't appease your concerns...

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
a) I'm a Yamaha "fan" and I like owning Yamaha products, the buying and owning experience (of the brand).


I don't believe the experience of purchasing and owning a Yamaha should be terribly different to that of a Kawai. Indeed, the original poster seemed to suggest that his/her shopping experience at the Yamaha dealer wasn't terribly pleasant. The fact is that there are good and bad dealers for all manufacturers.

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
b) Few/None Kawai dealers where I live.


There are many Kawai dealers in Europe.

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
c) Because of b) warranty repairs if they happen will be a pain.


Not necessarily. If any issues occur while the instrument is under warranty, the dealer/distributor is obliged to assist you.

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
d) Because of c) few people own, know and aspire to own Kawai products - this means when the time comes to sell the Kawai product, I will get very little for the piano, and it will take forever to sell if I don't completely dump the price.


I'm afraid I do not agree with the first part of your statement - if it were true, Kawai would not sell pianos. As for resale value, I agree that Yamaha's stronger brand recognition may be useful when it comes to selling the instrument. However this is of relatively little significance when considering more important factors, such as a digital piano's keyboard action, sound technology, useful features, cabinet design, etc.

I hope this helps.

Kind regards,
James
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Posted by: Craig62

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 10:51 AM

Originally Posted By: Kawai James
Indeed, congrats wonderboydd (Sega reference?)!

If you have not done so already, I would recommend checking your piano's firmware and updating to the latest version, if necessary.

Firmware updates can be downloaded from the URL below:

http://www.kawai.co.jp/worldwide/support/updates.html

Kind regards,
James
x

Are you suggesting that there's an upgrade for the CA65 James? I can't see one on the linked page.

Craig
Posted by: bennevis

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 12:47 PM

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
I'm also tempted to buy a Kawai digital piano.

But these things work against that:

a) I'm a Yamaha "fan" and I like owning Yamaha products, the buying and owning experience (of the brand).





Brand loyalty is coveted by manufacturers, which is why, as consumers, we should do all we can to subvert their expectations grin.

Ever since I bought my V-Piano and sent off my guarantee card, Roland has been sending regular e-mails to me encouraging me to buy their new V-drums, V-sticks, V-cars, V-parachutes, V-rockets and everything in between, which annoys me no end. After all, I was only ever interested in one Roland product (because I found it was superior to any other DP made by anyone else, and I didn't even know anything about Roland before then), and will probably never buy anything else made by Roland again...
Posted by: Carlos-CR

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 01:37 PM

Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: boyonahill
I'm also tempted to buy a Kawai digital piano.

But these things work against that:

a) I'm a Yamaha "fan" and I like owning Yamaha products, the buying and owning experience (of the brand).





Brand loyalty is coveted by manufacturers, which is why, as consumers, we should do all we can to subvert their expectations grin.

Ever since I bought my V-Piano and sent off my guarantee card, Roland has been sending regular e-mails to me encouraging me to buy their new V-drums, V-sticks, V-cars, V-parachutes, V-rockets and everything in between, which annoys me no end. After all, I was only ever interested in one Roland product (because I found it was superior to any other DP made by anyone else, and I didn't even know anything about Roland before then), and will probably never buy anything else made by Roland again...


Marketing is the new evil!

My recent post in another thread is very relevant to this (off)topic. Here
Posted by: adak

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 01:40 PM

can you post pictures of your new piano?
Posted by: boyonahill

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 02:16 PM

Originally Posted By: Kawai James
Originally Posted By: boyonahill
I'm also tempted to buy a Kawai digital piano.


Great!

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
But these things work against that:


Well, let's see if we can't appease your concerns...

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
a) I'm a Yamaha "fan" and I like owning Yamaha products, the buying and owning experience (of the brand).


I don't believe the experience of purchasing and owning a Yamaha should be terribly different to that of a Kawai. Indeed, the original poster seemed to suggest that his/her shopping experience at the Yamaha dealer wasn't terribly pleasant. The fact is that there are good and bad dealers for all manufacturers.

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
b) Few/None Kawai dealers where I live.


There are many Kawai dealers in Europe.

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
c) Because of b) warranty repairs if they happen will be a pain.


Not necessarily. If any issues occur while the instrument is under warranty, the dealer/distributor is obliged to assist you.

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
d) Because of c) few people own, know and aspire to own Kawai products - this means when the time comes to sell the Kawai product, I will get very little for the piano, and it will take forever to sell if I don't completely dump the price.


I'm afraid I do not agree with the first part of your statement - if it were true, Kawai would not sell pianos. As for resale value, I agree that Yamaha's stronger brand recognition may be useful when it comes to selling the instrument. However this is of relatively little significance when considering more important factors, such as a digital piano's keyboard action, sound technology, useful features, cabinet design, etc.

I hope this helps.

Kind regards,
James
x


Hi James!

When I mentioned brands and my appreciation of Yamaha I wasn't talking about the dealer experience. I was talking about how I feel about certain brands. For Kawai I feel nothing, since I don't know much about that brand. For Yamaha I have many positive feelings, this makes it fun for me to buy that brands products. This is silly, but I'm only human.

"There are many Kawai dealers in Europe."
Sure, but let me tell you about my situation, that might be difficult to fully appreciate living in Japan (as I assume you do). My country has a total surface bigger than Japan, but with circa 7% of the population of Japan... From what I can find there is 1 (one) Kawai dealer in my country, they are 300 km away. The second closest Kawai dealer isn't in my country, and thus circa 650 km away. If there will be a warranty issue I will have to drive to the dealer. No Kawai products are included in the biggest "lowest price for a product"-website. One could say that Kawai is virtually unknown outside certain small groups, like grand piano fans.

I agree that one should by "the best instrument", but since Kawai is so unknown, and I will probably get so little for a used instrument, this pushes up the "total cost of ownership" of Kawai instrument. For example, let's assume that the CA95 and CLP-480 are equally good. But with certainty I will recoup a smaller part of the "new price" when selling the CA95, probably so much that the entire cost advantage of the Kawai is gone, from a TCO perspective. My guess is that the CA95 might even be more expensive. Adding to this is the added time it will take to sell an unknown brand, there probably is a fancy economic term for this that I can't remember at the moment. The situation would be different if Kawai had a bigger presence here, but it doesn't.

Probably Kawai haven't cared or tried to get a presence in my country, understandable since it's not a huge population, about 7% of that of Japan, but the country is rich and really loves music...

Five of the top ten songs in the world at the moment are written or produced by Swedes, and this is an off week. Not bad for a country of just under 10 million people. In fact, Sweden is the largest exporter of pop music per capita in the world and the third largest overall after the United States and Britain.
http://sacc-usa.org/currents/business/swedens-music/

I'm still considering a Kawai, but I know that the TCO will be much higher than the sticker price indicates, including a drive of totally 600 km just to test one.
Posted by: MacMacMac

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 02:41 PM

Are you taking pride in Swedish pop music exports? Can we then blame Sweden for the poor quality of modern/pop music? smile

Oh wait, you're down at third on the list. So you're just a lesser contributor to modern music crapitude. Now that justifies a bit of pride.

The US and Britain, the leaders as you say, earn the lion's share of the blame. smile
Posted by: Kawai James

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 07:32 PM

Good morning boyonahill,

Am I correct in assuming that you are based in Sweden (Umeå)?
If so, please contact Kawai's Swedish distributor, Juhl-Sørensen Piano, for information regarding pricing and availability of instruments in your region.

Originally Posted By: boyonahill
When I mentioned brands and my appreciation of Yamaha I wasn't talking about the dealer experience. I was talking about how I feel about certain brands. For Kawai I feel nothing, since I don't know much about that brand. For Yamaha I have many positive feelings, this makes it fun for me to buy that brands products. This is silly, but I'm only human.


I can relate to this feeling. I grew up playing a variety of Casio, Yamaha, and Technics instruments, and have owned a Korg for a number of years. However, of all the manufacturers, my personal affections are for Clavia Nord - ironically a Swedish company. I currently have two Nord instruments here in my apartment, and will likely purchase another in the near future. Here in Japan, Clavia instruments are distributed by Korg, however I've yet to find a Nord board in any of Hamamatsu's musical instrument stores.

Kind regards,
James
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Posted by: kevinocarro

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 08:43 PM

Yes you could argue one should buy to keep but I know myself better than that...
Posted by: boyonahill

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 11:28 PM

Originally Posted By: MacMacMac
Are you taking pride in Swedish pop music exports? Can we then blame Sweden for the poor quality of modern/pop music? smile

Oh wait, you're down at third on the list. So you're just a lesser contributor to modern music crapitude. Now that justifies a bit of pride.

The US and Britain, the leaders as you say, earn the lion's share of the blame. smile


Why are you letting Korea off the hook?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9bZkp7q19f0
1,119,330,599 views
Posted by: boyonahill

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 11:36 PM

Originally Posted By: Kawai James
Good morning boyonahill,
.... However, of all the manufacturers, my personal affections are for Clavia Nord - ironically a Swedish company. I currently have two Nord instruments here in my apartment, and will likely purchase another in the near future. Here in Japan, Clavia instruments are distributed by Korg, however I've yet to find a Nord board in any of Hamamatsu's musical instrument stores.

Kind regards,
James
x


Have you tried this one
OP-1 - Introduction - Teenage Engineering
www.teenageengineering.com/products/op-1
Posted by: Kawai James

Re: New Kawai CA65 - 01/03/13 11:55 PM

Very cool!

No, I've not tried it personally, however a colleague owns one - he's actually the product leader of the new <snipped>.

Cheers,
James
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