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#2003695 - 12/23/12 10:24 PM Nord Stage EX88 VS Nord Piano
voodooblues Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/23/12
Posts: 29
Hello,

I would welcome some help comparing Nord Stage EX 88 and Nord Piano 88 when it comes to playing acoustic piano samples.

I'm about to buy Nord Piano 88. But I also own a Nord Electro 2, and I started thinking that if I sell it I could stretch my budget to the range of used StageEX88-pianos. That way I could combine two boards into one, organ+piano. And the synth section would be a really big plus as well.

What I don't want to compromise from, however, is the acoustic piano sound and piano-alike-touch. There's no place I can test out the StageEx88 so I have to do the comparison on paper smirk So after the StageEX software updates the only differences I can see between NP88 and EX88 piano sections are :

-EX88 has no pedal noises

-Ex88 has only 256mb memory.

-Ex88 does not feature "dynamic pedal" (guess that has something to do with either half pedalling or pedal noises?)

I don't find the 2 first limitations to be a problem. When gigging I would propably turn of the pedal noises anyway and I can live with the smaller memory. So my main concern is that if I for example download the new Italian Grand sample to Stage EX will it sound just like it would on NP88? (apart from pedal noises). Or do these 2 pianos use some differet technology to process the same piano sample?


And how about the keybed? Clavias site tells that StgEX has
"Hammer Action Weighted Keys" while NP has "weighted hammer action" .... Same words, different order - is there a difference? (However elsewhere at Clavias site they also describe EX88's keys as just "weighted" AND "Weighted Hammer Action"). Very confusing!!

I have played Nord Piano and it has the type of keys I want. I always thought they were called "hammer action" keys, while the Nord Electro 2 type of keys are called "weighted" keys. But I'm really not sure anymore, Clavia has managed to mess up my head wink So what kind of keys does the StageEX 88 model have and how do they compare to the Nord Piano 88's keys in your opinion?

Thank you for your input in advance

-Joni

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#2003704 - 12/23/12 10:39 PM Re: Nord Stage EX88 VS Nord Piano [Re: voodooblues]
Dmaj Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 9
I would like to know as well smile


Edited by Dmaj (12/23/12 10:39 PM)

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#2003711 - 12/23/12 10:59 PM Re: Nord Stage EX88 VS Nord Piano [Re: voodooblues]
EssBrace Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/09
Posts: 2632
Loc: Suffolk, United Kingdom
The key actions are basically the same mechanically - they are manufactured by the same outside supplier (Fatar of Italy). Clavia claim that they specified slight changes to the action for the Nord Piano - something to do with sensor trigger points if my memory serves me right to simulate a more pianistic response.

I don't think the Stage's memory is enough now. If you browse through Nord's piano library you will see that the memory provision of the Stage will not accommodate very much.

Some of the Nord Piano's pedal functionality is unique to it - not just the noises but the continuous response I believe.

In either case the Nord can be a frustrating companion because the action simply does not match the quality of the sounds. The sounds make it unique among digital pianos due to their variety and character but the action is a disappointment I have to say - and is far inferior to the typical Yamaha/Roland/Kawai actions. That said, the Nord counters with superior portability.

So a compromise has to be made. I think right now the Nord is as good a compromise as any. For my purposes I would choose Nord Piano over the older Stage EX but for you, well only you can decide.

Good luck,

Steve
_________________________
Roland RD-1000 | Yamaha CP1 | Physis H1

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#2003724 - 12/24/12 12:43 AM Re: Nord Stage EX88 VS Nord Piano [Re: voodooblues]
anotherscott Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 3928
The pianos in the Nord PIano will sound better than the same pianos in the EX because of the support for the enhanced string resonance and the long release.

The actions of the Nord Piano, Stage EX, and Stage 2 are all similar hammer weighted actions, but not identical. Even if they are based on the same underlying Fatar keybed (and I believe that at least the Piano and the NS2 are), they are tweaked differently, so the feels are slightly different. In the same ball park, but not identical.

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#2003859 - 12/24/12 09:59 AM Re: Nord Stage EX88 VS Nord Piano [Re: voodooblues]
ando Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 4532
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
If you are determined to go Nord, sounds like Nord Piano 2 might be the way to go. At least it has some synth capability (without actually being a synth). The EX88 is just too old and hampered with its lack of memory. You can't take advantage of the high quality Nord samples with such low memory. I also think that lack of half-pedaling is a bigger issue that you first realise.

By just listing Nord Piano and EX88, rather than Nord Piano 2 and Stage 2, it sounds like you are very much doing this on a budget. In that case, both are compromises. But Nord means compromise for portability as Steve said.

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#2004053 - 12/24/12 05:01 PM Re: Nord Stage EX88 VS Nord Piano [Re: ando]
voodooblues Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/23/12
Posts: 29
Thanks to everyone for your responses. Very valuable information!

Originally Posted By: anotherscott
The pianos in the Nord PIano will sound better than the same pianos in the EX because of the support for the enhanced string resonance and the long release


I think that after the latest OS updates for EX it has same string resonance and long release features as NP. Not sure though.

I agree, the NP's acion isn't certainly the best ones out there, as EssBrace pointed out. I'm still trying to figure out if it works for me. I don't need an action that's just like on a grand - just needs to work well togehter with the sound I'm hearing smile So buying a EX88, which I don't have a chance to testdrive, will propably be too risky.

Originally Posted By: ando
If you are determined to go Nord, sounds like Nord Piano 2 might be the way to go.

...

By just listing Nord Piano and EX88, rather than Nord Piano 2 and Stage 2, it sounds like you are very much doing this on a budget. In that case, both and compromises. But Nord means compromise for portability as Steve said.


I considered NP2, but looking at this

http://www.nordkeyboards.com/home/images/Nord%20Piano%20vs%20Piano2%20comparison%20chart.pdf

comparison chart between Np and NP2 it seems NP2 is just a NP with a String+piano pad, which I never use. And maybe a tad different action again. That for about 1000 USD more.

You're right I'm on a budget, Stage2 would be tempting but I would have to sell my car and electro 2 to afford it wink

Excuse me for going offtopic, but do you have any info if there will be a replacement for Yamahas CP series soon? CP5 has been my alternative for NP88, but I decided to focus on NP as the prices went down after NP2.

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#2004110 - 12/24/12 08:47 PM Re: Nord Stage EX88 VS Nord Piano [Re: voodooblues]
anotherscott Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 3928
Originally Posted By: voodooblues
comparison chart between Np and NP2 it seems NP2 is just a NP with a String+piano pad, which I never use. And maybe a tad different action again.

NP2 is an NP with the ability to split and layer a piano sound with whatever sounds you like from their sample library (a lot more than just strings). No difference in action as far as I know.

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#2004183 - 12/25/12 01:57 AM Re: Nord Stage EX88 VS Nord Piano [Re: anotherscott]
voodooblues Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/23/12
Posts: 29
Originally Posted By: anotherscott
NP2 is an NP with the ability to split and layer a piano sound with whatever sounds you like from their sample library (a lot more than just strings). No difference in action as far as I know.


Oh yes, I was exaggerating a bit. Being able to playback the other sampled sounds is an logical next step and impovement for the NP-line and it sure can be a extremely useful feature. But to justify the 1000 USD for myself I would've wanted to see Nord do some improvements or extra features for the piano department as well. I'll rather save the money and keep on dragging my Motif to gigs for the strings and stuff.

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#2004838 - 12/27/12 08:30 AM Re: Nord Stage EX88 VS Nord Piano [Re: voodooblues]
anotherscott Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 3928
Originally Posted By: voodooblues
Originally Posted By: anotherscott
The pianos in the Nord PIano will sound better than the same pianos in the EX because of the support for the enhanced string resonance and the long release


I think that after the latest OS updates for EX it has same string resonance and long release features as NP. Not sure though.

They did add the string resonance functionality to the EX, though not the Long Release function. Thanks for the correction.

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