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Ajax69 Offline OP
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I have some extensive travelling coming up 2022 and would love to have the possibility to use hotel room evenings for piano practicing. I have only two requirements:

- Small. Meaning full size keys, but probably around 61 - 64 of them.

- As "real piano-like" key action as possible.

Will only be playing through head phones.

Good build quality is extra points. Budget is max 2.000 €. (But if there's a real GEM at 2.500€ I could consider that too).

Appreciate your input.


Peter
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The closest thing is probably a used Roland RD64.

Though I'm not sure it's any more portable than the 73-key Yamaha P-121. The two have the same length. The Roland is a bit less high and less deep, but the Yamaha is lighter.

Whether these pass the "decent" threshold is subjective, but they are at least hammer actions.

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Casio Ct-S1....

laugh laugh Joking..

or not.. eek

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A 61-key weighted piano action is a bit of a unicorn; so you’re really looking at un-weighted/semi-weighted synth actions.

The budget plastic key-action in the Casio CT-S1 has decent dynamic control; definitely put it on your short-list to try out.

If it sounds shocking to recommend a US$200 keyboard, that’s because the realm of 61-key travel-friendly keyboards is strange. While I don’t think anyone would say the CT-S1 has a great action, spending 1.800 € more isn’t necessarily going to net you a significantly better action. In fact, many expensive 61-key keyboards have actions that perform worse.

Disclosure: I own an S1 and I like it.


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Even 73-key hammer actions are rare... P121, Korg SV2, Nord Electro or Piano 73...
For 61 keys, try non-hammer actions like
CTS1, GO:keys, NP32;
Vox Continental 61, Nord Electro 5 61...

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Yeah I have a CTS1 and it's ok. The key action is a shock going from a normal digital or acoustic action, and the dynamic control initially lacking at least for me, but spend more time with it and you start to adapt. Some say, I think I read, adjust the touch to heavy, which helps. The portability, light weight, 61 sounds, user saved options especially sustain, solid construction, BT midi option (add on), make it worthwhile, especially at the price.

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Originally Posted by _sem_
Even 73-key hammer actions are rare... P121, Korg SV2, Nord Electro or Piano 73...
Besides the four you mention, others cueently available are Yamaha CP73, Nord Stage 3 HP, Korg Kronos 73 and Grandstage 73 (though it looks like Grandstage may be discontinued), Kurzweil Forte 7 (ditto), Dexibell S3 Pro (and the apparently discontinued S3 and P3)... but when taking into account weight and all dimensions, these are less portable than the P121 (though generally better for other reasons).

In non-hammer 61s, the Vox Continental you mentioned is one of the better feeling ones. The 68-key Dexibell S1 could also be worth a look, and it's quite compact.

Last edited by anotherscott; 11/26/21 12:00 PM.
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There's the new Studiologic Numa X Piano 73 too. It's actually smaller and lighter than the Roland RD-64 and Yamaha P121 73 mentioned earlier, because the Roland has that annoying left-mounted interface and the Yamaha has thicker sides The Roland is 44" wide, the Studiologic is 41"

It has that new Fatar TP-110 action, for which we've seen few impressions, but it's certainly better than an unweighted action and presumably better than the older TP-100. It's well under your budget too.

The Casio PX-S' are similarly light, but I assume they're too big.

Last edited by napilopez; 11/26/21 12:30 PM.
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Thanks everyone! I'm overwhelmed by all the good suggestions. Takes a while to go through.

Presently I've reached as far as the Dexibell S 3 Pro, which really impresses me.

But I'll keep on looking at what you all have suggested.

Again - big thanks!!!


Peter
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Originally Posted by spanishbuddha
Yeah I have a CTS1 and it's ok. The key action is a shock going from a normal digital or acoustic action, and the dynamic control initially lacking at least for me, but spend more time with it and you start to adapt. Some say, I think I read, adjust the touch to heavy, which helps. The portability, light weight, 61 sounds, user saved options especially sustain, solid construction, BT midi option (add on), make it worthwhile, especially at the price.

I keep a Casio cts1 in my trunk and use it during lunch breaks at work. The action is nothing compared to a real digital piano like my Yamaha p515. The 61 keys are limiting- but I still find the portability a plus and I use it to learn notes. Good especially to learn Bach fugues. I have traveled to hotels with it and it’s decent.


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Yeah, the CTS1 is tempting due to size and price. But considering action I'm more leaning towards something a little more high end. Thought I'd found what I was needing in the Dexibell Vivo S3 Pro, until I read this thread at PW: http://forum.pianoworld.com/ubbthre...on-dexibell-vivo-s3-pro.html#Post3087870

... where the action of the S3 Pro is deemed being brutally hard. Which is not my cup of tea at all.

So I'll keep on looking. Any more suggestions are more than welcome! wink


Peter
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There are no sub-88 hammer action boards that feel great that are also particularly light to carry around. At under 30 lbs, there's the GHS action in the Yamaha P121, the BHS action in the Yamaha CP73, and the Fatar TP/100 action in everything else (with a revised TP/110 forthcoming in the Numa X). That said, not all TP/100 actions feel the same. I've really disliked it it in some boards, but I like it in my Dexibell P3. If you can possibly try out a TP/100 based Dexibell, getting your own hands on one is better than relying on what you read in that thread, because there is a lot of subjectivity to this.

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Originally Posted by Ajax69
Presently I've reached as far as the Dexibell S 3 Pro, which really impresses me.

Depending on your expected life time for that product, I would think twice before buying from anyone else than the biggest producers. The smaller ones can easily go out of business, potentially limiting your ability to fix stuff once it gets broken. Not sure though how large Dexibell is (if that's even the company's name).

Originally Posted by Ajax69
(But if there's a real GEM at 2.500€ I could consider that too).

I have a "GEM" lying around. Tho it's 25 kg and full size. And its producer went out of business some years ago. smile

Last edited by Marc345; 11/27/21 06:14 PM.

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Ok, so this is how far I've come for now (no ranking in the below list). And haven't played any of them. Probably won't have time to either before purchase:

1. Casio CT-S1. Really small and light. Key action probably very non-piano-like. Low cost enough to "buy and try".

2. Dexibell Vivo S-3 Pro. Like the sounds and the style of it. Pretty light weight. Key action gets a lot of not-so-good reviews. Heavy, sluggish, etc. A bit pricey to just give it a try.

3. Korg SV-2 73. The RH3 action known from my D1. I'd say it's ok. The SV-2's got more sound controls than I will ever use. Rather heavy. A bit pricey to just give it a try.

Thanks for all your input so far. So - which way should you go if in my position? Maybe I should add Studiologic Numa X Piano 73 also?


Peter
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Originally Posted by Ajax69
Ok, so this is how far I've come for now (no ranking in the below list). And haven't played any of them. Probably won't have time to either before purchase:

1. Casio CT-S1. Really small and light. Key action probably very non-piano-like. Low cost enough to "buy and try".

2. Dexibell Vivo S-3 Pro. Like the sounds and the style of it. Pretty light weight. Key action gets a lot of not-so-good reviews. Heavy, sluggish, etc. A bit pricey to just give it a try.

3. Korg SV-2 73. The RH3 action known from my D1. I'd say it's ok. The SV-2's got more sound controls than I will ever use. Rather heavy. A bit pricey to just give it a try.

Thanks for all your input so far. So - which way should you go if in my position? Maybe I should add Studiologic Numa X Piano 73 also?

So your problem is just 1 octave?

I highly doubt that 7-octaves is any different than 8 in terms of weight and dimensions. 6 octaves would make a noticeable difference but 7? not so much.


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Originally Posted by Abdol
So your problem is just 1 octave?

I highly doubt that 7-octaves is any different than 8 in terms of weight and dimensions. 6 octaves would make a noticeable difference but 7? not so much.
He was looking for a 61-64. So 73 is already a stretch. As for how much difference, the S3 Pro is 42.4". The 88-key version is 50", which is about as small as any 88 you'll find. (And the weight goes up from about 23 lbs to about 40 lbs, but that's because they also put a higher end action in that model.)

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Originally Posted by anotherscott
He was looking for a 61-64. So 73 is already a stretch. As for how much difference, the S3 Pro is 42.4". The 88-key version is 50", which is about as small as any 88 you'll find. (And the weight goes up from about 23 lbs to about 40 lbs, but that's because they also put a higher end action in that model.)

I know, I'm looking at his statement from the opposite side. He's looking for a 6 octave (ish) keyboard and he ended up with all 7+ octave keyboards. The difference between 7 and 8 octaves isn't much in terms of weight and dimensions, but if the OP picks something like RD-64, then it will be significantly lighter.

What the OP is looking for is very niche. Almost everyone who buys weighted/scaled keyboards never travels long distances with their gears... and if they do, like bands, they don't care much about it as it's part of their business.


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Originally Posted by Abdol
Originally Posted by Ajax69
Ok, so this is how far I've come for now (no ranking in the below list). And haven't played any of them. Probably won't have time to either before purchase:

1. Casio CT-S1. Really small and light. Key action probably very non-piano-like. Low cost enough to "buy and try".

2. Dexibell Vivo S-3 Pro. Like the sounds and the style of it. Pretty light weight. Key action gets a lot of not-so-good reviews. Heavy, sluggish, etc. A bit pricey to just give it a try.

3. Korg SV-2 73. The RH3 action known from my D1. I'd say it's ok. The SV-2's got more sound controls than I will ever use. Rather heavy. A bit pricey to just give it a try.

Thanks for all your input so far. So - which way should you go if in my position? Maybe I should add Studiologic Numa X Piano 73 also?

So your problem is just 1 octave?

I highly doubt that 7-octaves is any different than 8 in terms of weight and dimensions. 6 octaves would make a noticeable difference but 7? not so much.

Well, my MP7SE is 22,5 kg (which otherwise would be perfect). But is close to double the Dexibell 11,8 kg. And yes - the length of 88 keys is a bit problematic in my car. With wife, German Shepherd and luggage... wink


Peter
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When I comes to fitting in a car and general lugability, the difference between 88 and 73 is significant.

As mentioned earlier the RD-64 should really not be q consideration. It is heavier *and* wider than the mentioned 73 key options because of the controls on the left (really, what's the point, Roland?). .

To Ajax69, there are few impressions of the Numa x Piano 73, but it is the smallest keyboard that's been mentioned besides the CT-S1. Studiologic (which is actually a Fatar brand) says the action is lighter than the TP-100 too, so if it arrives in stores soon seems like it should be on your list. I think the model/sampling combination sounds good too

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Originally Posted by Ajax69
1. Casio CT-S1. Really small and light. Key action probably very non-piano-like. Low cost enough to "buy and try".

One data point - would disagree with the word “probably.” I’m a piano beginner, my main piano is an ES110, but I got a CT-S1 for its portability (and 20% off lol). It’s a fun instrument, though _definitely_ not a piano-like key feel. But you can control the dynamics decently and it has a lot of cool sounds. I wish there were a decent bag for it. Haven’t found one yet.

I actually would recommend it, just keep your expectations reasonable- it’s more of a simple practice device than a realistic small piano.

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