I completed grade 8 about 10 years ago then stopped playing when I moved to the UK due to lack of access to a piano (I took up a more portable non-keyboard instrument just for a couple of years as temporary 'compensation').
I miss playing the piano as I found it liberating and relaxing. I am now financially in a position to afford one BUT I can't get an acoustic piano because of my living circumstances (am moving to a top floor, one-bedroom flat in N3, north London)- (a) it would disturb the neighbours and (b) not possible to get an accoustic piano up to the 2nd floor via the narrow staircase.
Looking at the FAQs page and link about digital pianos, I saw mention of 'silent pianos' (eg. http://www.chrisvenables.co.uk/yamaha_silent_pianos.htm), however, I would still have a problem of how to get such a piano up the narrow staircase to my 2nd floor flat. Also, it seems to me that when in 'silent' mode (which is what I'd have to practice in most of the time), it would have the same quality limitations as an ordinary digital piano anyway. (so it's as much 'worse of both worlds' as being 'best of both worlds'!)
Therefore a digital piano is my only realistic option for the next 5 (?) years (other than the status quo of nothing at all). I am aware of digital pianos' sensitivity limitations during sampling which means it cannot fully replicate the experience of playing acoustic piano (though I have not yet had the chance to try one.... I'll do so before making any purchases, of course).
I can't really do anything about this limitation, because of my living circumstances, but it's been brought to my attention that this may mean I have difficulty finding a teacher who's willing to coach me back up to ABRSM grade 8 standard (and perhaps beyond) as they will require me to have an acoustic piano to practice on. That being the case, I don't know whether its worth me investing one or two thousand pounds in an 'inferior' or 'limiting' instrument in the first place (if I get one, I would be willing to spend on a top of the range one, e.g. Roland HP-103 or HP-107 http://www.roland.co.uk/prodcatdetail.asp?ID=HP-107ERW )
Do you, as teachers or as students who've been in similar positions, have any advice for me? I would appreciate any advice.
Many thanks in advance.
I worked for Yamaha Digital Pianos and I teach Jazz so I'd like to think my reply has some value. Even if its a demi-semi-quavers worth?