Digital piano for a beginner

General discussion about digital pianos

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Nat
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Digital piano for a beginner

Post by Nat » 07 Aug 2009, 22:55

Dear everybody,
I would like to ask whether you think a beginner child student should start with:

-a weighted keys digital piano or

-a graded keys one is good enough.

I just think it will be more difficult (on an acoustic piano) if a student takes an exam in a year or so, and pricey to upgrade.

Thank you very much.

markymark
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Re: Digital piano for a beginner

Post by markymark » 08 Aug 2009, 12:50

Okay, to make this easier for me, how much do you want to spend?

explorer
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Re: Digital piano for a beginner

Post by explorer » 10 Aug 2009, 19:23

HI

I am too looking to purchase a digital piano as my daughter aged 8 is about to start piano lessons at school next term. From what I have read a full set of keys that have the weighted hammer action seem to be the way to go. I know nothing bets a real piano but Space is an issue in our house so the more slim line the better. Yamaha p85 and the casio Px120 both seem to be suitable. So here goes....
-do you think it is worth investing this much money an instrument that she may not be interested in learning in a years time?
-Is it better buying a cheap keyboard instead to see if she likes it first?
- if I did go for a cheap keyboard how soon would I have to upgrade it?
- with the yamaha P85 does the keyboard just slide on and off its corresponding stand or does it need to be unscrewed? Is the stand quite light an easy to move around? I saw one on a collapsable x stand today and it seemed very wobbly.
- Do you think it is necessary to purchase the 3 foot pedals as well or would the one pedal included with the key board be sufficient?
- Also do you know whether Yamaha is going to bring out a new version of the P85 in the near future?
- Does anyone have a major preference between the yamaha and the casio? Obviously the price is a big factor and one does wonder whether it is worth paying out more for a yamaha.
-should I purchase a piano stool as well or is a normal chair fine?

I 'm sorry about all the questions and know doubt I am not the first to ask them. As you can guess I do not play the piano myself and so feel myself going around in circles with what to buy.

I look forward to all your advice.

markymark
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Re: Digital piano for a beginner

Post by markymark » 11 Aug 2009, 13:00

Yamaha p85 and the casio Px120 both seem to be suitable. So here goes....

-do you think it is worth investing this much money an instrument that she may not be interested in learning in a years time?

This is the question most people ask when they are trying to start their child off in piano/keyboards. I would say that buying a less expensive model of keyboard is preferrable to forking out £2000 or so for a brand new, cheaper model of piano which may end up redundant. Is there someone that can lend a keyboard to your daughter? If you are thinking along the lines of piano lessons, the P85 or PX120 have graded hammer actions which would be passable for learning Initial and Grades 1-3 or even 4. By then you will know whether or not a piano is going to be a meaningful investment. If you are really unsure about paying out for a keyboard/cheap digital piano, then think seriously about tracking down one of these models in the secondhand market or try to get the lend of one for a week to see if she is genuinely interested. I am assuming that formal lessons are what you also have in mind....?

-Is it better buying a cheap keyboard instead to see if she likes it first?

If you really aren't sure, getting a cheaper one may be the best option, that is if lending, hiring or the secondhand market is not offering you any other options. Be careful not to go too cheap! The P85 and PX120 are okay while still being in the entry level. The DGX models are okay but have a very lightly weighted keyboard action and have lots of other bells and whistles which may be of interest but equally could be distracting too. Check them out and you'll see what I mean. There are other brands that fall into £400 and less which are toys and finding someone to buy it off you (if it come to the point) could be difficult.

- if I did go for a cheap keyboard how soon would I have to upgrade it?

It really depends on the manufacturer and the model range. Yamaha for example have a four year rotation on their model upgrades (sometimes less than that) but not sure about the others.

- with the yamaha P85 does the keyboard just slide on and off its corresponding stand or does it need to be unscrewed? Is the stand quite light an easy to move around? I saw one on a collapsable x stand today and it seemed very wobbly.

You can use an X-stand or you can buy an L-85 stand which is more sturdy. The keyboard is not supplied with any stand. You can see the accessories for the P-85 here: http://uk.yamaha.com/en/products/musica ... ccessories

- Do you think it is necessary to purchase the 3 foot pedals as well or would the one pedal included with the key board be sufficient?

Not at this stage.

- Also do you know whether Yamaha is going to bring out a new version of the P85 in the near future?

No. The P-85 is not out all that long but you could try asking Yamaha directly and see if they will tell you.

- Does anyone have a major preference between the yamaha and the casio? Obviously the price is a big factor and one does wonder whether it is worth paying out more for a yamaha.

Personally, I prefer the brighter and richer sound of the Yamaha. Others prefer the mellow tone of the Casio. In my case, as I play in church, I like the quality of other voices in the Yamaha as well as piano. The Casio has a decent tone but you'll find everything else pretty fake - that may not be a big issue for you. Others have gotten over that hurdle in the past because a piano voice was all they needed for quiet practice.

-should I purchase a piano stool as well or is a normal chair fine?

At this stage, an ordinary chair should be okay. I'd want to see if she is interested in playing a piano first!

Also have a look at the Digital Pianos FAQ forum where I have posted quite a lot of answers to common questions I have come across on this Digital PIanos forum over the years.

explorer
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Re: Digital piano for a beginner

Post by explorer » 11 Aug 2009, 15:24

Thanks alot for all your advice. It is really appreciated. I think we will probably go for the p85.

Cheers

Nat
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Re: Digital piano for a beginner

Post by Nat » 15 Aug 2009, 22:27

Hi again,
Thanks for your answers.

My student has ended up with hiring a piano on a 3 months contract at £20 a month from a local music shop.

It gives us time to see how the child gets on with his new activity.

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