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My boyfriend plays the piano (classical and jazz) and for his birthday me and his family would like to offer him a digital piano. Our budget is around $600-$1000 maximum. Which ones would you advice in this list? http://digital-piano.en.audiofanzine.com/ I'm completely lost!
And if I decide to buy a second-hand digital piano, is there anything I should look out for? Which site is the best? Ebay? Any other?
http://www.pianoworld.com/ubb/ubb/ultim ... rum/6.html
At the risk of sounding awkward or unco-operative, you should have a look at the site athomik mentioned as some of those models are unknown here. Alesis for example is very rare here, Akai virtually unheard of as a keyboard model - again, these are just a couple of brand names.
I did recognise the CLP240, 250, 270 on the list. We do have those and they are brilliant instruments but they retail at 1000GBP which will blow your budget completely! The Kawai MP4 has a nice touch with its wooden keys but I'm not so keen on its rather dull grand piano sound and it weighs a ton! The Korg SP models are worth checking out.
I think you need to decide whether or not you want a mobile keyboard model, or a furniture model that will sit in your lounge or den and never be moved around. When you make that decision, that will help you shortlist that exhaustive trail of keyboards. The furniture models do tend to be more expensive because of the stand and matching stool made to support the actual keyboard.
Not sure if this helps you much but as I always say to people I advise, make sure you try the instrument and, despite the fact you may want it to be a surprise, it would be safer to let your boyfriend try it to make sure he likes it!
He has played an acoustic piano for many years already, and I've heard him mention that having the same feel on the digital piano is really important...
He will play only in the house, so it does not need to be easy to transport.
Does that change anything? Any other suggestions?
If at all possible his family would like the gift to be a surprise, but I am starting to think that its too difficult!
The Yamaha CLP models I mentioned earlier have hammer action keys and have a great grand piano sample. If you click on on of the links on the page you provided, you'll see what a furniture piano looks like. As I mentioned, hammer action also costs a bit more and these, I feel, provide the most realistic response.
Other Yamaha models that have the hammer action keyboard and the realistic piano samples would be: P140, P250, P300, P60, P70, P90. All of these would we more stage piano styles of instruments, i.e. not furniture digital pianos. As you move down the numbers, I find the sound quality and amp of the speakers are not as good however and this is something to consider. Kawai is alright but I'm not all that keen on their piano samples - that is a personal choice and so many of us in this forum could argue around this topic for years and never really agree. Perception of sound quality is so personal as is the feel of the keyboard which is why I'm urging you to reconsider the surprise element just in case you can't refund the instrument.
Cheaper models, but still not bad, would include the YDP models and the YDP-S30 are pretty decent if money is a deciding factor. Out of all the keyboards you mentioned, the Yamaha CLP models would be the best. Better piano samples appear in CLP240 and higher. I think these are fool-proof but you may need to check the prices of those in US dollars!