Digitals, good enough to learn on?

General discussion about digital pianos

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Moonlight
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Digitals, good enough to learn on?

Post by Moonlight » 16 Jul 2008, 17:12

Hi everyone, I'm new :D

I'm thinking of getting a digital piano and have my eye on the Yamaha Clp 270. Problem is I keep hearing people say digitals don't feel anything like an acoustic and that the touch is too light (although I have heard some people say it was the same as an acoustic or even a grand :shock: ) I'm concerned because when I go to do an exam one day I'm scared that the real one I will need to play on with be too much of a shock for me and my playing with be rubbish :oops: . Is there anyone around here, who is a beginner that has a digital that has sat an exam, did you have any problem moving from the digital to a real one? has it affected your playing abilty? do you regret not buying an acoustic?

I would be thankful for any advice

My real name is Anna by the way!

Nigel
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Post by Nigel » 17 Jul 2008, 09:34

Hi Anna

I currently take lessons on an acoustic piano but have a digital casio piano at home (PS-20) for practicing. The keys are full size and weighted but its still not the same however that said my practice at home is benefitting me massively within my lessons and the point for me is that it's still massive fun!!! I can also plug in my headphones to save driving the family mad :x

I face an issue as I would love to buy a decent upright but without some support who knows what they are looking for my only option is something new and this is costly :roll:

Good luck

Nigel

Moonlight
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Post by Moonlight » 17 Jul 2008, 20:43

Hi Nigel,

Thanks for your reply, Its reassuring to know that your digtal is proving to be a benefit to your progress. I gues a digtal is the way to go for me as I don't want the hassle of an upright in my bedroom (no idea if it would go up the stairs) and I dont wan't to annoy my family, especilly when doing repetitive things like Hanon exercises, scales etc; at least it has volume control and headphone jacks.

I'll see how I get on with the digtal then will probably buy an accousic when I reach grade 4 (one day), the Yamaha accousic B1 seems to be reasonably priced. Unfortunately I can't afford lessons yet, let alone the digtal :cry: .Ill just need to carry on with my Casio keyboard for now...

Oh, woe is me!! :cry:

gash
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Post by gash » 18 Jul 2008, 14:33

Hi Anna.

I've been practicing on a Yamaha clp133 which is over 10 years old, and more than good enough to get me through ABRSM grade 1, and I have no issues with not having easy access to an acoustic.

I've tried about 4 different acoustic pianos. They all felt different to each other, and they all felt different to the digitals I've tried. The exam room (acoustic) piano was different again.

I guess what I'm saying is, pick a piano (digital or acoustic) that feels good to you. Go to a shop and try them out to see what you like.

Gary.

Moonlight
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Post by Moonlight » 21 Jul 2008, 16:54

Hi Gary,

Thanks for your advice. You mentioned your digital is over 10 years old, is it still as good as when you bought it? because I have heard people say digtals don't last long and wear out easily.

Anna

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Post by gash » 21 Jul 2008, 18:37

Hi Anna.

The digital I practice on is at work, and was bought for student use a long time before I started learning piano.

It looks like it's had some physical abuse (cracked case and damaged stand), but seems to play fine. I would struggle to find any other equipment that has survived for so long the harsh environment of student labs and I've confined my hunt for a DP for home use to Yamaha partly because of this.

I called into the Darlington Piano Shop at the weekend, and had a quick go on a CLP330, which felt really good. The feel of the keyboard reminded me a bit of the piano in the exam room. However, I'm probably going to go for a DGX630 which will be easier to move when we have guests.

http://www.rockingrooster.co.uk/product ... 6-110.html

Not as good looking as the clp's, but good enough for now.

BTW: my piano teacher advised me not to go for a DP with lots of bells and whistles, but I didn't really have the heart to say that I like to play with gadgets...

Have fun,
Gary.

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Post by markymark » 29 Jul 2008, 22:27

Moonlight wrote:Hi Nigel,
I'll see how I get on with the digtal then will probably buy an accousic when I reach grade 4 (one day), the Yamaha accousic B1 seems to be reasonably priced. Unfortunately I can't afford lessons yet, let alone the digtal :cry: .Ill just need to carry on with my Casio keyboard for now...
In order to develop you interaction with the piano, an acoustic for at least Grade 5 onwards would need serious consideration. Digital pianos are great for the creative stuff but will soon reach their limits when you try to observe dynamics and texture within music.

Moonlight
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Post by Moonlight » 30 Jul 2008, 13:49

Hi Mark,

Don't worry, I wont rely on a digital for too long, by the time I'm grade 5 I'll have an upright ( knowing me I will probably get one when I reach grade 3 :wink: ). I mostly want the digital so it will fit in my small bedroom and so I can practice without annoying anyone. When I have the upright the digital will be mostly for night time practice which usually starts at 12am onwards :P .

Is it possible to practice softly on an upright without waking anyone up if you keep the soft pedal down? or would it damage the piano.

and also what makes of uprights would you recommend to some one new to pianos and who might spend up to 2,000 pounds on one? (one day)

Real pianos are far too beautiful to be replaced with electronic ones...

markymark
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Post by markymark » 31 Jul 2008, 11:36

Pianos with three pedals will have something called a "practice pedal" alongside their sustain and soft pedals. The practice pedal has a slot on the cabinet that allows you to keep the pedal down without having to keep you foot on the pedal the whole time. Now this will significantly reduce the volumn of the instrument and, in my opinion, practice using this practice pedal only produced a sound that would allow you to practice notation such as for your scales, arpeggios, pieces but will be utterly useless for practising expression as the instrument is muted so much. However, provided that the instrument is not too close to the bedrooms and provided that the piano is overly loud by default, then you shouldn't have any difficulty practising without disturbing the household. And no, this won't damage the piano. As I say, you'd be using the practice pedal and not the soft pedal for these quiet practice sessions.

As far as recommending a piano, as with the digitals, it really depends on what you want and how much you want to spend. Common brands would be Yamaha, Kawai, Kemble, Bechstein and then the more upmarket and more expensive Bosendorfer and Steinway. If you are planning to go on to Grade 7 or 8, then you could consider investing in a Yamaha U1 (3000-4000GBP) upright which is around the professional range. Again if space is an issue, you might want to think about the new Yamaha B3 (2500GBP) or maybe one of the smaller Kembles which can be quite nice and closer to your price range.

Honestly, I'm not an acoustic piano expert and acoustic piano queries would be better answered by the guys on the "Pianos" forum. The tuners and piano retailers post there and would be able to advice you of pianos that even keep their resell value and quality for longer.

Moonlight
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Post by Moonlight » 01 Aug 2008, 13:10

Thanks,

I'll try and find out more about the piano makes you mentioned, although I don't think I could afford a Steinway unless I win the lottery or something. I've read something about practice pedals before, its a nice convenient feature. I might condsider a Yamaha B3 or U1??? who knows, I wonder if they have that feature.

I might ask the other guys when I finally need to buy the accoustic but that won't be for a few years! Better start saving...

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