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- Richter PDP220 (also known by other brand names). This is a very cheap unit, about the cheapest that you cna get 88 weighted keys. I used it as a stage piano in a pub band for which purpose it was acceptable, but for more usual requirements it would be a poor choice. The action was actually OK, but the keys had a tendency to 'stick' if they hadn't bene played for a little while- so you needed to remember to run your hand along all the keys before playing, to free them up. A strange problem indeed. The sound produced was pretty poor, but recognisable as a piano. It had a reasonabl half-pedal featuyre which was a nice bonus. Overall I would steer clear of this unless you really had very litlte money to spend.
- Casio CDP100 this can be found for about the smae price as the PDP220 and is much, much better. It is still obviously a budget piano but severla of my pupils have purchased one, and I use for for teaching when travelling to a remote area. The main advantages are that it is chepa and light; the action and sound are acceptable given the price. I'd reccomend this as the lowest cost 88 key fulled weighted piano that you should consider.
- Yamaha NP30 we had one of these for teaching prior to acquiring the Casio; it is a bit cheaper, but is a 76 key non-weighted unit and whilst at the time seemed a reasonable budget option, I now believe that the Casio is far superior for only a little more money. The action is, onviously, not evenb attempting to replicate a real piano. The sound suffers from a strange hissing that is audible during key presses. A friend has the smae piano and this makes the same hiss.
- Roland EP760- this is my current stage 'piano'. It is not weighted so does not approximate a real piano, however it sounds very nice indeed and for portable applications is a good choice. I chose this over the Casio because, whilst both are portable, the Roland sounds much better, and for my needs this was more important than having 88 fully weighted keys.
- Yamaha YDP131- this is my main home piano, and I use it for some of my teaching work. It was the entry-level Clavinova and I am quite happy with it. Im my opinion an acoustic piano has to be very well maintained and of good wuality for its action to surpass this Yamaha. If asked to find fault, I would say that the decay on the notes is not modelled as well as it could be- the tone becomes a little shrill as the note continues to ring on. Secondly, the keyboard itself seems to have become a little 'clacky' through the heavy use that it has had over two years. Thirdly, the sound of any digitla piano cannot fully replicate the room-filling resonance of a real piano.
- Yamaha YDP151- one of my pupils uses this and it is very similar to the above. It does not exhibit the 'clacking' from the keys which could be a sign of a higher build quality, or could be simply that the piano receives far less use and is newer than my own.
Well I hope that this is helpful to somebody. I have tried out a few other digital pianos but that's enough for today. The main thing to remember when choosing is that it is all subjective and you really must try before you buy. Also, digital pianos just keep on getting better, so I would suggest buying new or nearly-new, unless you are looking at getting a real bargain.
IvorYtickler wrote: Im my opinion an acoustic piano has to be very well maintained and of good wuality for its action to surpass this Yamaha.
I'm guessing that you have only ever played awful acoustic pianos then, because I find that I usually prefer any acoustic piano to a digital, unless the acoustic is completely beyond tuning, and the action is totally worn out beyond repair.
Perhaps the acoustic pianos I have played are not very well regulated?
I would absolutely agree that a good acoustic, well maintained, is superior, however in my (admittedly limited) experience most acoustic pianos do not flal into this category.
Having spoiled myself with a copmletely consistent action on my digital I do find it hard to adjust to an acoustic piano where playing softly becomes very challenging indeed. Maybe this is just my personal problem!
It's also true that the upright I teach on at school is NOT as good as a Clavinova.
However, most of the pianos I play are better than digitals. I get your point though.