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Joined: Mar 2020
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Tim C Offline OP
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I purchased a new Roland HP107 back in 2006 and it's been my sole piano for the past 14 years. I've been very happy with it, though in my apartment living situation I use it exclusively on headphones.

I'm in the process of moving and off-loading the instrument. I'd be interested in switching to a portable-style instrument since I have occasional (and hopefully increasing) opportunities for gigging where a portable keyboard would be required. I'd like to still only maintain one instrument (so NOT keeping the HP107 and adding a portable).

My at-home playing (95% of the instrument's life) is classical (Debussy, Chopin, Beethoven), my gigging opportunities (5%) are folk (irish, celtic) so really piano voices are all that are of interest. I don't care if instruments have hundreds of sounds.

Looking at the current Roland offerings, the FP-60 and FP-90 seem the most relevant portable replacements for the HP107. The relevant differences between these two instruments are the action, the engine, speakers, and weight.

The HP107 I presume was a sampled engine (?) and I think pre-dated the "SuperNATURAL" engine of the FP-60? So if I've been content with the HP107, the FP-60 engine should be no worse?

The HP107 literature doesn't indicate the escapement design. Again, should I assume the FP-60's PHA-4 keyboard is no less advanced than the HP107? The FP-90 steps up to the PHA-50 keyboard with embedded wood in the keys. I don't have a feel for if this is a meaningful improvement, especially if I've been content with what I've had?

The FP-60 has 2 speakers and is 42 lb. The FP-90 has 4 speakers and is 52 lb. The more powerful speaker system might be useful in live situations though I really see myself continuing to use headphones for the majority of playing.

So, there's all those questions. Are there any other things I haven't thought about in moving from a "furniture"-style DP to a portable? Of the two, I'm inclined to go with the FP-60 for budgetary reasons (~$500 difference) and the fact that I suspect it's no worse than the status quo. Unless the FP-90 is a major step up to make it worth the extra size and cost? Again, any factor's I'm oblivious to?

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FWIW --

You really should try and play both the FP-60 and FP-90. The FP-90 has the new "SuperNatural Modelling" sound generator, and some people just don't like its sound. (I played it a bit, and _did_ like it.)

The actions are significantly different.

I haven't checked the specs on the speakers and amps, but the FP-90 _might_ save you from carrying a separate amp/speaker for performances.


. Charles
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To echo what Charles has stated - try both the FP-60 and FP-90. FP-60 being sampled, and FP-90 modelled.

FP-90 is peculiar - you don’t get full piano volume unless you bump the EQ sliders to the top. So rather than having them in a neutral position, bump them up to the max position and then adjust the sound to taste from there. That will give you an idea of the piano volume capabilities. I can’t remember how the other sounds faired in that respect (though some of the organs were REALLY loud).

Weight is definitely a consideration - just that with a heavy slab, it’s not possible to split the weight... whereas with a light slab and separate speakers, the weight is split into the components which can make loading/unloading easier depending on how you travel with it.


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Don't waste time here, go to a DP store and try. You can't check the key action and sound from your armchair.

Online you can only check piano sound samples if you have quality earphones, but mind something gets lost with streaming audio compression. Differences in piano engines are quite subtle, but important to some. To me the ES8 sounds a bit nicer than the Rolands.

I think the key actions in the higher range (FP90, ES8, MP11SE) are notably better than the budget range (FP10/30/60, ES110). But gigging pianists often pick the latter, mainly because of the weight, carrying 24kg isn't the same as carrying 12kg. And use them at home with external speakers, headphones, or not at all - also have an acoustic grand wink

> Are there any other things I haven't thought about in moving from a "furniture"-style DP to a portable?

In some cases, furnitures price-wise compare reasonably to slabs incl the extra pedals and furniture stand, and at comparable wattage the speakers sound better because they are not optimized in weight and space for portability. For instance, the CN39 sounded notably nicer than the ES8, also a couple of current furniture Rolands with PHA-50 keys sound more impressive than the FP90.

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Originally Posted by _sem_


> Are there any other things I haven't thought about in moving from a "furniture"-style DP to a portable?

In some cases, furnitures price-wise compare reasonably to slabs incl the extra pedals and furniture stand, and at comparable wattage the speakers sound better because they are not optimized in weight and space for portability. For instance, the CN39 sounded notably nicer than the ES8, also a couple of current furniture Rolands with PHA-50 keys sound more impressive than the FP90.


Agreed: both the HP-704 and LX-705 sound better - the whole experience is better IMO. I've not tried the others.

Advantages of a furniture style piano - music rest is higher up, keyboard cover is built-in, stability whilst playing, pedals are fixed (so they don't run away from you constantly!) and included in the price, inputs/outputs (although fewer of them) are on the front of the instrument for easy access.


Learning to play. Consciously incompetent, which apparently is a good starting point. smirk

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