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#3141295 07/28/21 03:42 PM
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Finally tried Yamaha CLP 785, Nu1x hybrid, Kawai Nv5, Nv10 and Kawai acoustic k200. Also Kawai Ca99 and Ca79.
First tried acoustic k200. My first time on an acoustic. A bit harder to play coming from a digital but very impressed. If I had the space and didn't have to worry about neighbour's this would be my choice. The action felt solid, the sound felt real and had a presence. I heard someone else play it who was much better than me and it sounded wonderful to my ears.
The Nu1x was almost as good actionwise but sounded a bit duller. Tried it later on and was impressed. Could happily live with it.
Nv5 was also good action wise but I thought it sounded much brighter than the Nu1x. As a relative beginner don't know if this is good or bad. Piano also looked good.
Nv10 was next. Fabulous action great sound but the keys were lighter than the uprights. Unfortunately the price is beyond me and the size a bit too big for my space.
Ca79 Ca99. After playing hybrids, these felt a bit toylike in their actions. Sound was good but I thought very digital. Didn't seem a significant upgrade from my CN37. Pianos cabinets also seemed unimpressive compared to polished ebony of the Nu1x and other hybrids. Also tried Casio gp510. Action was good, cabinet nice but the sound on the Berlin grand nowhere near the quality of the others. Ruled it out completely.
Tried the Yamaha CLP 785. Nice but didn't scream buy me action/soundwise.
In an ideal world I'd buy an acoustic. Bit more hassle re tuning, noise, space etc. But would probably last longer.
I think you get what you pay for. Don't think a £2k machine can outperform a £5k machine.
Think an upright would be good enough for me for years. Think I'm leaning towards an Nu1x or Nv5.
Will try them all again and see if I stick with my first impressions. The price of the Nu1x is probably my maximum but I wonder if it's worth stretching another £1000 for the newer Nv5s ?
Came home and played my Kawai CN37. Actually felt good to me but maybe it's because I'm used to it?
I'm sure the pianos I tried inherently better in the long run.
Sorry for the long post, feel free to comment.

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It's wonderful to be able to try so many pianos.
Were all of those pianos in the same shop?

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How’s you think the sound and feel with the soundboard did on the nv5 vs the NU1X? Considering those 2 myself.

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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
It's wonderful to be able to try so many pianos.
Were all of those pianos in the same shop?
I'm in Hants, the county next door so was curious where the OP tried these out too? I usually go to Bonners Eastbourne around this time of year, but no NV5S showing in stock.

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Yes Mac all in the same shop over a course of a couple of hours. I do also think that you get used to the action and sound of whatever you have or buy. It's going to be a tough choice, especially when cost is unfortunately a consideration.
Re soundboard of Nv5 against Nu1x. Maybe it's the positioning of the speakers but I had no complaints on both and would struggle to rule out either re sound.
What I don't know is which piano is better builta me d which piano will last longer. Nv5s is much newer than Nu1x but more expensive.
Really want to like the Ca79 price wise and would probably really enjoy it but not sure if it's significant enough upgrade over my CN37?
Again any comments on these pianos welcome.

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Quote
Came home and played my Kawai CN37. Actually felt good to me but maybe it's because I'm used to it?

I think the modern hammer actions on digital pianos are very playable.


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Originally Posted by Cutec
The price of the Nu1x is probably my maximum but I wonder if it's worth stretching another £1000 for the newer Nv5s ?
Came home and played my Kawai CN37. Actually felt good to me but maybe it's because I'm used to it?

I think this is a good plan. Stretch for an NU1X or NV5 depending on which you like better, or stick with your CN37 for another year or so and reconsider (you lose nothing but time by holding off).


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I think Gombessa nailed it. The real piano actions of the NU and NV pianos are a dream compared to the conventional digital action of the CA-series.

If their prices make you choke, then maybe save some cash and buy next year.

IMO, I'd rather pay the high price (which, in time, will be forgotten) than save money on a cheaper piano that I'd have to live with for a long while.

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Cutec, thank you for sharing your thoughts.

Which store did you go to, just out of interest?
Did you have to book an appointment due to Covid?

Cheers,
James
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Cutec #3141445 07/29/21 02:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Cutec
Finally tried Yamaha CLP 785, Nu1x hybrid, Kawai Nv5, Nv10 and Kawai acoustic k200. Also Kawai Ca99 and Ca79.
First tried acoustic k200. My first time on an acoustic. A bit harder to play coming from a digital but very impressed. If I had the space and didn't have to worry about neighbour's this would be my choice. The action felt solid, the sound felt real and had a presence. I heard someone else play it who was much better than me and it sounded wonderful to my ears.
The Nu1x was almost as good actionwise but sounded a bit duller. Tried it later on and was impressed. Could happily live with it.
Nv5 was also good action wise but I thought it sounded much brighter than the Nu1x. As a relative beginner don't know if this is good or bad. Piano also looked good.
Nv10 was next. Fabulous action great sound but the keys were lighter than the uprights. Unfortunately the price is beyond me and the size a bit too big for my space.
Ca79 Ca99. After playing hybrids, these felt a bit toylike in their actions. Sound was good but I thought very digital. Didn't seem a significant upgrade from my CN37. Pianos cabinets also seemed unimpressive compared to polished ebony of the Nu1x and other hybrids. Also tried Casio gp510. Action was good, cabinet nice but the sound on the Berlin grand nowhere near the quality of the others. Ruled it out completely.
Tried the Yamaha CLP 785. Nice but didn't scream buy me action/soundwise.
In an ideal world I'd buy an acoustic. Bit more hassle re tuning, noise, space etc. But would probably last longer.
I think you get what you pay for. Don't think a £2k machine can outperform a £5k machine.
Think an upright would be good enough for me for years. Think I'm leaning towards an Nu1x or Nv5.
Will try them all again and see if I stick with my first impressions. The price of the Nu1x is probably my maximum but I wonder if it's worth stretching another £1000 for the newer Nv5s ?
Came home and played my Kawai CN37. Actually felt good to me but maybe it's because I'm used to it?
I'm sure the pianos I tried inherently better in the long run.
Sorry for the long post, feel free to comment.

It was an excellent post! It seems to highlight what so many folk experience wuth digital pianos, who frequent these forums.
The need to change for something better.
It is imo an illusion which affects earthlings unfortunately.
Interesting what you said also, about the K200.
I liked that and was considering a silent model, or a silent B1 which are popular now. They play well, but the keys in silent mode were way too noisy.
And since my VST is sounding so good, all I want now (I'm gettin' on a bit) is a nice lightweight keyboard which doesn't wreak havoc wi my thumbs.
A Kawai CN 37 like yours, or a 39 might be just the one . . .


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James, it was Bonners in Reigate. No appointment.
Thanks Peter. All opinions subjective and others may differ. I did go in hoping the lesser price models would do it for me but when comparing to hybrids and acoustics there was not really a contest. However, played at home in isolation even the much cheaper digitals will give you huge pleasures. I also have an es920 and can play not for hours as a proverbial pig in ........

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Should read, can play for hours!

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"Also tried Casio gp510. Action was good, cabinet nice but the sound on the Berlin grand nowhere near the quality of the others. Ruled it out completely."

Hi Cutec,

were you referring to the sound from the speakers/the quality of the speakers, or is it the same with (hopefully, good) headphones?

Thanks

Omobono

(P.S. I might drive to Reigate to Bonners Music one of those weekends and would be able to try a lot of pianos, but just for the curiosity...).

Last edited by Omobono; 07/29/21 10:32 AM.

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Hi omobono. Re the Casio. The volume was fine,quality of speakers was fine but the sound didn't sound like a proper piano compared to the hybrids. To be fair it sounded very digital, which it is. Probably unfair to compare to more expensive dp's. Also, perhaps I was used to a different sound. Like everyone will tell you, it is all in the eye of the beholder. YMMV.
What will be interesting will be my second audition of these pianos.

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Thanks Cutec, let us know how that goes!


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Originally Posted by Cutec
Yes Mac all in the same shop over a course of a couple of hours. I do also think that you get used to the action and sound of whatever you have or buy. It's going to be a tough choice, especially when cost is unfortunately a consideration.
Re soundboard of Nv5 against Nu1x. Maybe it's the positioning of the speakers but I had no complaints on both and would struggle to rule out either re sound.
What I don't know is which piano is better builta me d which piano will last longer. Nv5s is much newer than Nu1x but more expensive.
Really want to like the Ca79 price wise and would probably really enjoy it but not sure if it's significant enough upgrade over my CN37?
Again any comments on these pianos welcome.

You could just upgrade the sound engine of your current piano by adding a laptop and VST or Dexibell VIVO SX7 midi module loaded with one or two of their platinum pianos.


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Originally Posted by Cutec
Hi omobono. Re the Casio. The volume was fine,quality of speakers was fine but the sound didn't sound like a proper piano compared to the hybrids. To be fair it sounded very digital, which it is. Probably unfair to compare to more expensive dp's. Also, perhaps I was used to a different sound. Like everyone will tell you, it is all in the eye of the beholder. YMMV.
What will be interesting will be my second audition of these pianos.

No, your impression of the sound seems dead on compared to others who have voiced the same opinion.

Hybrid aside, some believe it to be the best action on the market. Everything else on it sub standard.Could be interesting if your going to used VSTs anyway

Never got my hands on one.

Ron

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It appears that the GP310 has the same action as the GP510, so if an external sound engine will be used, the GP310 would be more cost effective.


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Never tried a vst. Got a MacBook Pro. Could someone walk me through the basics of what I need. Is there a trial version of a vst I could try? What cables would I need?
Sorry for my ignorance but I keep reading about vst and should probably try it before I splash on a hybrid. Or a waste of time?

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Originally Posted by Cutec
Never tried a vst. Got a MacBook Pro. Could someone walk me through the basics of what I need. Is there a trial version of a vst I could try? What cables would I need?
Sorry for my ignorance but I keep reading about vst and should probably try it before I splash on a hybrid. Or a waste of time?

With the digital pianos you are buying / discussing .... I don't think you should be looking into VSTs.

The sound you get with quality digital pianos (like yours) are pretty good and a VST is not likely to improve much on that.

Some will argue about that ...(it is what they do) .... but unless you just want to fool with it, I would not think VSTs will give you better ... only different.

Of course, it you are looking for a way to get out of practicing .... VSTs will help with that. You can run through hours each day fussing with and effort to find the "perfect" sound .... which, of course, never happens.

Last edited by dmd; 07/29/21 07:03 PM.

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Cutec #3141662 07/29/21 07:07 PM
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No Don is right. Even my CA79 does not really need VSTs. They are fun to fool around with thought.

Plus if you go that direction, you will never get that great action you love from those Hybrids.

If money is no object, that is the closest you get to an acoustic piano.

Ron

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Save for the hybrids I have yet to hear a digital piano that would not benefit from a virtual instrument.

But if you're set on buying a hybrid ... just live with it a while. You might like it, and you might not feel any need for a virtual instrument.

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I feel like the OP's approach was very logical and sound, especially with making a first impression then going back to test it. Also, very nice and sensible taste. smile

I have a Kawai CS-11 (polished ebony cabinet, good wooden action but not fully authentic.) I'd love a hybrid with real escapement but it's hard to justify the cost (since I have something nice already.) The CS-11 plays better than 90% of the pianos I've had a chance to play, since it's not that often I play a fancy piano, and less often that the fancy piano is in perfect regulation. Playing in a piano store makes it a tough comparison because all the acoustics should be in their best form, so you're comparing against the best.

Oh, let me share this: what you hear in the store from the speakers and soundboard WILL BE DIFFERENT than what you hear in your own space. The soundboard and speakers in my CS-11 sounded incredible in the big, open piano store, but honestly sounds kind of 'just OK' in my home - was in a carpeted living room, now a large bedroom with hard floors, but always near a wall, which really affects it.

Aesthetic was and still is important to me. I feel special when I sit down at a nice piano, like it's a gift (which it is!). On-board sound was less-so since I knew I could, and probably would, change it. If I was doing it over, I'd be curious about a DP with maybe more or bigger speakers, or at least with Kawai's new electronics which are provided by Onkyo, a high-end Japanese audio electronics company.

Last edited by Joe Garfield; 07/29/21 08:19 PM.
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Suggestion: since you also have an ES920, replace the CN37 with an acoustic, not another digital.


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Sweelinck. Did think about an acoustic but like most people worry about the ongoing costs of tuning and regulation. Also worry, living in a terraced house, the loudness aspect re neighbour's. Very impressed with Kawai k200 acoustic and would probably go for a k300. Is a hybrid as good? I don't know

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Cutec, I know this is off topic, but I am curious.

I know you said you tried the K200. Did you also try the 300 and if so, what differences did you notice.

Ron

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The K300 has more to offer in terms of tone and the bass register, however most tend also to be a bit more energetic, dynamically speaking. Could be a problem if you’re trying to minimize noise.


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Ron. My intention was to try the k300, none available.
Presume like said before,that extra energy could present a problem noise and neighbors wise

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OT, re virtual pianos I personally have some reservations.

Firstly, it's no real "plug and play". One may need to buy a new laptop (I for example don't have and don't otherwise need any, so it would add straight to the cost). Alternatives like the Dexibell hardware (which might be "plug and play", more or less) are not far from £1,000, also added to the instrument's cost.

Secondly, it seems to this reader that these virtual pianos cause a huge amount of time used (or being lost) trying to maximise their performance, with many users buying several of them and tinkering with them for what must be a serious amount of time and, more worryingly, seemingly no one (or almost no one) being happy with the software in its standard form, "before tinkering". It does, if you ask me, tend to cause addiction, the chasing of the rainbow of "that perfect sound" that is never achieved as one keeps chasing and buying more virtual instruments...

It is certainly fun for software geeks and perfectionists. But for people who are not proficient in these things - and/or simply want to get better at playing the piano - it is probably better to buy a digital piano with a sound one likes on day one, and then focus on improving one's skills.

Just my two cents of course. However, I am personally tending towards the "must work without virtual piano" route..

Thanks

Omobono


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Originally Posted by Omobono
It is certainly fun for software geeks and perfectionists. But for people who are not proficient in these things - and/or simply want to get better at playing the piano - it is probably better to buy a digital piano with a sound one likes on day one, and then focus on improving one's skills.

Just my two cents of course. However, I am personally tending towards the "must work without virtual piano" route..

What you say about VSTs not being plug and play is definitely true. They need at least a minimal amount of technical effort and know-how to set up. But if you find the tone and responsiveness to your liking, they can be well worth the effort.

After the initial setup, tweaking and troubleshooting, my dedicated VST machine just stays on 24/7, silently, waiting to be played. It's at the point where it is literally just turn-on-DP-and-play, and the startup process is even faster than the native sound engine because the DP starts transmitting MIDI a few seconds after bootup smile

I haven't touched it in nearly a month (actually, longer since I just had to turn it back on after a blackout).

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Originally Posted by Omobono
OT, re virtual pianos I personally have some reservations.

Firstly, it's no real "plug and play". One may need to buy a new laptop (I for example don't have and don't otherwise need any, so it would add straight to the cost). Alternatives like the Dexibell hardware (which might be "plug and play", more or less) are not far from £1,000, also added to the instrument's cost.

Secondly, it seems to this reader that these virtual pianos cause a huge amount of time used (or being lost) trying to maximise their performance, with many users buying several of them and tinkering with them for what must be a serious amount of time and, more worryingly, seemingly no one (or almost no one) being happy with the software in its standard form, "before tinkering". It does, if you ask me, tend to cause addiction, the chasing of the rainbow of "that perfect sound" that is never achieved as one keeps chasing and buying more virtual instruments...

It is certainly fun for software geeks and perfectionists. But for people who are not proficient in these things - and/or simply want to get better at playing the piano - it is probably better to buy a digital piano with a sound one likes on day one, and then focus on improving one's skills.

Just my two cents of course. However, I am personally tending towards the "must work without virtual piano" route..

Thanks

Omobono

You are right but as with Gombessa, I too have hit that happy spot and don't even need to switch it on to play.
It all remains on, for me to sit behind and play immediately.
It can be a long and winding road, dry, sometimes horrible.
But what a prize when you actually win it!
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I am also a VST convert. What I enjoy the most is being able to play so many different instruments with just one controller and a PC, depending on the mood, the piece or both things.

Yesterday I played the UVI F Grand and it was a truly enjoyable experience. Today, I will probably play first an upright (VI Labs Modern U or perhaps some Native Instruments offering) and could end with the magnificent VSL Bösendorfer Imperial or 280VC. And so on.

Something just a few years ago was impossible. We live on a great time for piano playing!


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Did you not find the ca99 superior to the ca79 with its wooden soundboard and additional 35 watts. It would have been a similar experience to the Nv5s surely?

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Originally Posted by Cutec
Sweelinck. Did think about an acoustic but like most people worry about the ongoing costs of tuning and regulation. Also worry, living in a terraced house, the loudness aspect re neighbour's. Very impressed with Kawai k200 acoustic and would probably go for a k300. Is a hybrid as good? I don't know
You do need to get an acoustic piano tuned, but regulation is not much of an expense for a piano used in a home. A hybrid likely requires a similar amount of regulation as an acoustic, which again is to say not much.

A hybrid can offer a grand action with an upright footprint. An acoustic upright gives you an acoustic piano with an upright footprint. Both make compromises. You can place an acoustic absorbing block between soundboard and wall and don't place an upright along a wall that divides two units. This may be enough to play during waking hours, with the ES920 available for late hours or when quiet is imperative at other times.


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by PatG - 09/27/21 03:26 PM
Avantgrand N3X vs Kawai Novus 10S
by PianoComposer - 09/27/21 12:58 PM
practicing with noise cancelling headphones on!?
by chopin_r_us - 09/27/21 12:36 PM
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