2017 was our 20th year online!

Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 3 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments.
Over 100,000 members from around the world.
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

Shop our online store for music lovers
SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad)
Best of Piano Buyer
 Best of Piano Buyer
(ad)
Advanced Piano Tricks
Advanced Piano Tricks
(ad)
Pianoteq
Steinway Spiro Layering
(ad)
Wessell Nickel & Gross
PianoForAll
Who's Online Now
50 members (36251, bimzdbear, chopinetto, Animisha, almo82, Adem, Chocolaty, Anglagard44, 13 invisible), 1,000 guests, and 415 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3
Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
D
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
D
Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
A dynamically bright day to everyone!

I found several (mostly older) threads where there is some debate about the VPC and several other about machines with that lovely PHA4 Standard action. Did not find, however, one that really compares them, especially these new models.

My case is: I am planning for my future investments DP and controller-wise. And I really mean future, at least 10-15 years (although I am still not even a grad student, let's forget about it).
Recently, I could try out at least eleven different DPs in music stores with different actions. I compared them to gorgeous August Förster and Kawai grand pianos; of course, none of them I really felt even close, what I really compared how "inspiring" they were. I played a Kawai ES-920 with that RHIII and MP11SE with GFII - and somehow, they were a huge disappointment for me. Even the MP felt too sluggish and spongy or whatever. Do not misinterpret me, very nice action, but for that >2000 price no way.
What made me even more surprised after that I really liked the FP30X action, it was far more "inspiring" despite the worse sound than MP. Still a little heavy action for me (I like lighter grand actions, like of those above), but it was like, I could live with it. The speaker and sheet music rest was even more of a plus for me, kind of a potential for instant play whenever, read from sheet.
But... after all, still not that grand feel, at least subjectively.
I am a huge Pianoteq fan, and now what I need the most is a decent action controller. It is said that VPC is something that is "in fact" made for Pianoteq and maybe I could get my hands on one in a few months - but I am afraid of the action, which is said to be being "on the heavy side". What are your thoughts about it, considering mostly the heaviness? I really want something that I will fall in love with, no compromise (-: ... Of course, if I order from Thomann, I could send it back, but it cost much from my country, so better to avoid.
Back to PHA4, I recently discovered that Roland A88 MKII. I would certainly find good use of its additional controls (any Spitfire Orchstra and Surge Synth fans here?) and it is said that its action is even lighter then the older PHA4 Standard ones, as this is a 2020 version (that might imply that even lighter than FP30X's). Any experiences?
And more importantly: does anyone have tried both of them (I mean the VPC and one of the other two) so one could compare and contrast them?

By now, as I see another option as well that in the future I may get a real grand action and build a Cybrid-copy or something with optical sensors, maybe the Roland would be a more practical option, as that DIY thingy would be portable as a middle age castle, and so is VPC, so... But let someone talk me out of that idea (-:

Best regards,
Matthias

Joined: Nov 2015
Posts: 137
M
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
M
Joined: Nov 2015
Posts: 137
Originally Posted by detektorosradio
But let someone talk me out of that idea (-:

Not sure what you mean with "grand feel", but the Novus NV10S surely should fit that description.

I wouldn't recommend DIY. I don't know anyone who actually uses his DIY DP. Or look at the Yamaha N1X nekked pictures. You'll see a large, very strong looking bar across that entire thing. Good luck doing that in DIY. My guess is that it has special thermodynamic properties to avoid expansion/contraction effects like those happening in real acoustic grands. Also, they have probably very precise production mechanisms to place their sensors - something you won't have in DIY projects. With the N1X, the service technician apparently can adjust the entire sensor setup by adjusting a single horizontal bar. GL implementing such a thing in DIY. Also, there is PNOscan, a sensor bar that you can put under the acoustic piano keys. However, it only has 1000 samples per second. I doubt it can in any way be compared to N1X or NV10S sensor resolutions. Bechstein has their own silent tech. It has 20.000 samples per second. But even that probably does not come close to what AvantGrand and NV10/NV5 series are doing (IMHO).

Did you try the Roland LX-706? It has a 10 years warranty. 3k€ incl home repair service

VPC-1 is too heavy, and I don't see any advantage in it. Rather: it's heavy but without home service. Same applies to MP11SE. Not practical unless you have a few helpers around to carry it to the next electronics expert authorized by Kawai.

Last edited by Marc345; 12/08/21 07:32 PM.

HW: MP11SE, Touche SE (+Arturia Keylab Ess. 88, Akai MPK249, in reserve: GEM Promega 3)
SW: Garritan CFX, Ravenscroft 275, Modern U, Noire, Absolute 5, Acousticsamples B5
Pics: https://imgur.com/a/GZgdFm3
Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
D
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
D
Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
Much thanks for your answer!

Originally Posted by Marc345
Not sure what you mean with "grand feel", but the Novus NV10S surely should fit that description.
I am not sure either; as I played on those acoustic grands, I had that familiar, inspiring "wow"-experience in the feel. In comparison I tried how much close were those DPs in playing experience. Subjective and biased, of course.
I guess you must be right about the Novus. However, for half of its price I already could buy e.g. a little used Petrof grand, not the highest category but definitely a real thing. Being not a professional just an enthusiast, it would be an overkill even if I by some miracle I had the budget. I am rather thinking in a >500--1500€ price range.

Originally Posted by Marc345
Also, there is PNOscan, a sensor bar that you can put under the acoustic piano keys. However, it only has 1000 samples per second. I doubt it can in any way be compared to N1X or NV10S sensor resolutions. Bechstein has their own silent tech. It has 20.000 samples per second. But even that probably does not come close to what AvantGrand and NV10/NV5 series are doing (IMHO).
I looked at PNOscan as well. I do not know if 1000 samples how much really is but what I was worried about right away is that its sensors are placed below the keys, not near the hammers - I have doubts how it translates, perhaps they even have some software solution to model hammer strike from key movement (naive me...) Perhaps not.

Originally Posted by Marc345
Did you try the Roland LX-706? It has a 10 years warranty. 3k€ incl home repair service
Unfortunately I could not and do not even see the option in my country. But considering its price and size, I rather renewed the action in my old upright (man I like its sound! just too sluggish and heavy action already) and then installed a silent system in it.

Originally Posted by Marc345
VPC-1 is too heavy, and I don't see any advantage in it. Rather: it's heavy but without home service. Same applies to MP11SE. Not practical unless you have a few helpers around to carry it to the next electronics expert authorized by Kawai.
I guess good point here. At least the VPC-1 is so-to-say simple enough to be home modified (judging by looking at its inside parts), but definitely not in warranty period, eh. "Heavy" you mean carrying weight-wise?

Joined: Nov 2015
Posts: 137
M
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
M
Joined: Nov 2015
Posts: 137
Originally Posted by detektorosradio
I guess good point here. At least the VPC-1 is so-to-say simple enough to be home modified (judging by looking at its inside parts), but definitely not in warranty period, eh. "Heavy" you mean carrying weight-wise?

Yes. Though I'm not sure if it's that simple to repair yourself. Kawai always seems to replace the entire sensor boards, if not the entire electronics. It might be easy to replace those parts, but it's certainly not cheap, esp after warranty has run out.

If you like the sound of your upright, and if you don't need the silent option, well, I guess most of us would recommend to rework its action.... and get a separate, cheap, and therefore easily replaceable DP for your VST stuff.

Last edited by Marc345; 12/09/21 08:11 AM.

HW: MP11SE, Touche SE (+Arturia Keylab Ess. 88, Akai MPK249, in reserve: GEM Promega 3)
SW: Garritan CFX, Ravenscroft 275, Modern U, Noire, Absolute 5, Acousticsamples B5
Pics: https://imgur.com/a/GZgdFm3
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 549
V
500 Post Club Member
Offline
500 Post Club Member
V
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 549
Originally Posted by Marc345
I wouldn't recommend DIY. I don't know anyone who actually uses his DIY DP.

I don't think this is factually correct. I know of only one true DYI piano, and that one is used by its owner (the Cybrid). There are several people that installed pnoscan systems or similar optical midi systems from other brands (either in their complete pianos or in separate stringless actions), but that does not constitute a DYI piano.
I am sure that in the next 2-3 years there will be at least 2 more full DYI systems, and then more people will adhere to this option.

Joined: Nov 2015
Posts: 137
M
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
M
Joined: Nov 2015
Posts: 137
Originally Posted by vagfilm
I don't think this is factually correct. I know of only one true DYI piano, and that one is used by its owner (the Cybrid).

That would be ONE (!!). And even there my latest information is that he stashed it away in favor of the N1X.


HW: MP11SE, Touche SE (+Arturia Keylab Ess. 88, Akai MPK249, in reserve: GEM Promega 3)
SW: Garritan CFX, Ravenscroft 275, Modern U, Noire, Absolute 5, Acousticsamples B5
Pics: https://imgur.com/a/GZgdFm3
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 549
V
500 Post Club Member
Offline
500 Post Club Member
V
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 549
Originally Posted by Marc345
That would be ONE (!!). And even there my latest information is that he stashed it away in favor of the N1X.

You are correct. But your previous comment could be read as "that are many many people that made a DYI system and they are all so bad that people don't use it...", when it is just the opposite: there is ONE publically well known DYI system that cost around 2000 euros to put together, that the creator said it was practically as good as his 7000 euro yamaha N1X, far better than all other DPs that he has tried (a lot...) and that is not in use at this moment because of space and convenience. Just putting things in perspective...

Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 6,217
A
6000 Post Club Member
Offline
6000 Post Club Member
A
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 6,217
Originally Posted by detektorosradio
the MP felt too sluggish...What made me even more surprised after that I really liked the FP30X action, it was far more "inspiring" despite the worse sound than MP. Still a little heavy action for me (I like lighter grand actions, like of those above), but it was like, I could live with it.
Unfortunately, most portable DP actions are heavier and/or slower feeling than most grands. Yamaha and Roland used to make lighter/quicker feeling actions than they do today, so if that's what you want, you might see if you can find, say, a used Yamaha CP5 or Roland FP7/FP7F.

Joined: Dec 2020
Posts: 64
N
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
N
Joined: Dec 2020
Posts: 64
the FP90 felt quiet light and fast to me (and pretty good, too)

Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
D
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
D
Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
Originally Posted by anotherscott
Originally Posted by detektorosradio
the MP felt too sluggish...What made me even more surprised after that I really liked the FP30X action, it was far more "inspiring" despite the worse sound than MP. Still a little heavy action for me (I like lighter grand actions, like of those above), but it was like, I could live with it.
Unfortunately, most portable DP actions are heavier and/or slower feeling than most grands. Yamaha and Roland used to make lighter/quicker feeling actions than they do today, so if that's what you want, you might see if you can find, say, a used Yamaha CP5 or Roland FP7/FP7F.
Hmmm... I do not really see an option to try any of these, but I will go with eyes open. Thanks!
Originally Posted by Nigo
the FP90 felt quiet light and fast to me (and pretty good, too)
It should have PHA-50 action, their flagship, right? That one I tried on RD-2000 and Fantom 8 as well for a longer time (hour or more), and although I liked it, it still felt heavier and slower than of FP30X's, which has that PHA4 Standard midrange action. Yes, it is really subjective and I did not have a direct comparison just an almost week old memory. I am still surprised by that, as I have not really heard that someone did prefer PH4 to PHA-50, except for me... Tomorrow I might get to a music shop where I could directly compare them, I will share my experience.

Joined: Nov 2020
Posts: 418
P
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
P
Joined: Nov 2020
Posts: 418
Well there is static weight, how much force makes it move

And dynamic weight, how fast you can move it for a given force.

Those can be completely different.

Longer heavier keys have more dynamic weight.

But they can be very well balanced and have a low static weight.

The pha-50 keys are I believe a bit longer and heavier than the pha-4.

Some people like the lighter keys and it is not just a Roland thing,

If you want to play really fast get a semi weighted synth keyboard.


FP-90x, PX-330
Joined: Dec 2020
Posts: 64
N
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
N
Joined: Dec 2020
Posts: 64
Originally Posted by detektorosradio
as I have not really heard that someone did prefer PH4 to PHA-50, except for me...
I did heard that. So subjective
For my part until very recently I liked the GH3 Yamaha action (talk about heavy in static weight, it's in another league) but I discovered the weight is not always consistent when keys are repeated and now I'm like "I CAN live with it but I'd rather play on something else" and appreciate much more the Kawai RH action, although nowhere near perfect either (I've yet to try the wood keybeds)
opinion do not only vary from people to people, they vary from time to time with experience. A lot

Last edited by Nigo; 12/10/21 03:48 AM.
Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
D
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
D
Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
Originally Posted by Purdy
Well there is static weight, how much force makes it move

And dynamic weight, how fast you can move it for a given force.

Those can be completely different.
Yes, that's it, I have to agree! At least, if I understand those terms well.
I had the opportunity to play a Nord Grand with that mysterious Kawai RH-N action; well, its dynamic weight was just about 'perfect' for me, felt really fast (still like an acoustic). However, its static weight was a little bit too low for me as well; I thought it may be because of the lack of grading, so I was really thrilled to try the 'original' RHIII. But it simply did not convince me, I do not even remember why. At least I am not alone with it...
Originally Posted by Purdy
If you want to play really fast get a semi weighted synth keyboard.
I have one, with some Fatar TP/8 or so; I like it and it is ideal for synth and organ stuff, really a universal one; for piano - well, not only that it probably won't translate, weirdly it feels uncomfortable as well. That could be rather due to that 9-year experience on the real thing or so.

Originally Posted by Nigo
opinion do not only vary from people to people, they vary from time to time with experience. A lot
I am afraid of that, yeah! (-: Maybe that is the crucial reason for myself why I started this thread, as there should be a bunch of people with much more experience, and your opinion means me a lot, as I do not want to invest in what I will regret after I gain some little more experience with it, heh.

Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 6,217
A
6000 Post Club Member
Offline
6000 Post Club Member
A
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 6,217
Originally Posted by detektorosradio
Originally Posted by Purdy
If you want to play really fast get a semi weighted synth keyboard.
I have one, with some Fatar TP/8 or so; I like it and it is ideal for synth and organ stuff, really a universal one; for piano - well, not only that it probably won't translate, weirdly it feels uncomfortable as well. That could be rather due to that 9-year experience on the real thing or so.
Yes, a non-hammer board can play more quickly, but in a fashion that does not feel nearly as piano-like, and you're trading off some amount of control over dynamics.

Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
D
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
D
Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
Hello everyone!

As I have written before, today I got to a music store. What I learnt is essentially what I have already known before: you have to try the exact same instrument that you are going to be using or at least have the opportunity to effortlessly send it back.
I tried at least 5 DPs with the so-said-exactly same action, the PHA4 Standard - the one I loved in that FP30X in another music store. I played some passages on all of them, I really paid attention to fast trills that I love to do and am used to do a lot with acoustic pianos.
Here are they, the "results":
- another FP30X: yes, the same model. But it felt (probably dynamic action-wise) slower, a little sluggish. Pain.
- RP701: this felt lighter and faster, probably was my favourite one. Nice trills on it!
- F-701: Felt the most sluggish from all of these. I did not enjoy playing it.
- HP-702: A little slower/harder than the RP701, but I was still okay with it.
- FP10: Felt almost like a toy compared to the others. No way...
Some another:
- Woohoo! - I could play on an LX706, the high-end digital home grand or how is it advertised. Yes, almost. I enjoyed it, but definitely not more than the RP701. (Though its internal sound '1976SuitCase' is probably the best EP I have ever heard.)
- Unfortunately I did not find any with PHA-50, but the comparison is confusing enough without it already.
- I tried out some Casio ones which did not really feel realistic, and some Yamaha Clavinovas which were close to the point but unfortunately, I did not find them satisfactory as well. The different Fatar actions (that I liked previously, I mean, a few months earlier) in Dexibell Vivo S9, Nord Electro 6 etc. already felt a little bit 'cheapo' as I already had some experience with Roland and Kawai actions.

Overall: Given the fact that quality control at Roland is excellent, I am a little bit confused because the "best" and the "worst" one had, at least namely, the same action. Of course, these were exhibited products so might have been used daily and thus a lot, but still not older any of these than 5-8 years.
Now, maybe either I will order the A88 MKII from a local supplier so that I can rather easily send it back if I find it "the worse PHA4 Standard one" or stick to the VPC-1 because from 2013 until now it seems that it stood the test of time and if so much pianists like it and say that it is really close to a real grand's feel, I should be able to get used to it as well... I give myself time at least until middle of january to decide, so nothing is written in stones.

Joined: Nov 2020
Posts: 418
P
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
P
Joined: Nov 2020
Posts: 418
One thing you need to consider is that the touch settings on the keyboards may not be the same.

Some enterprising player may have changed them from default and it is not always clear if the default settings between models are even the same.

And yes unfortunately, floor models do take a beating.


FP-90x, PX-330
Joined: Dec 2020
Posts: 64
N
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
N
Joined: Dec 2020
Posts: 64
Originally Posted by detektorosradio
- Woohoo! - I could play on an LX706, the high-end digital home grand or how is it advertised. Yes, almost. I enjoyed it, but definitely not more than the RP701. (Though its internal sound '1976SuitCase' is probably the best EP I have ever heard.)
- Unfortunately I did not find any with PHA-50, but the comparison is confusing enough without it already
LX 706 has PHA-50 (of course) and you didn't even notice
if you found a FP30X that you love (the first one), why don't you go out and buy it ?
it's really a good keyboard for the price and you may from time to time enjoy it as a piano rather than just a controller, move it to friends etc. especially if you plan to keep it for a while. Try that with a VPC1...

Last edited by Nigo; 12/10/21 03:36 PM.
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 549
V
500 Post Club Member
Offline
500 Post Club Member
V
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 549
I think that the LX706 has the even longer Roland Hybrid Action; the LX model with PHA-50 is the LX705.

Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
D
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
D
Joined: Dec 2021
Posts: 17
Yes, they are different. The LX model uses the so-called "Hybrid Grand" action, which has definitely longer keys than PHA-50, see the picture (if I can attach it...)
[Linked Image]
But even with a PHA-50, a Fantom 8 felt more comfortable than an RD-2000 I played so...

Originally Posted by Nigo
if you found a FP30X that you love (the first one), why don't you go out and buy it ?
it's really a good keyboard for the price and you may from time to time enjoy it as a piano rather than just a controller, move it to friends etc. especially if you plan to keep it for a while. Try that with a VPC1...
Well, very prosaic reason: the store where I tried it out accepts Hungarian forints and right now I have the budget for it only in euros, hehe... A little bit more seriously: I was not sure about it yet (even if I dreamt about it after, my first time with a DP, strange...) and I wanted to try out some more.
You are right, the VPC1 is twice the weight and thus feels exponentially heavier. With the band we wouldn't really be gigging with that unless we could afford a proper minitruck as well (-:

Joined: Feb 2021
Posts: 1,072
H
1000 Post Club Member
Online Content
1000 Post Club Member
H
Joined: Feb 2021
Posts: 1,072
Hello,

Might this help?

Cheers and happy decision making,

HZ


Page 1 of 3 1 2 3

Moderated by  Piano World 

Link Copied to Clipboard
(ad)
Faust Harrison Pianos
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinway pianos
(ad)
PianoDisc

PianoDisc
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad)
Mason & Hamlin Pianos
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Führerschein legal in Deutschland kaufen
by geraldo - 01/23/22 04:15 AM
Download Sheet Music
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
What's Hot!!

Free Piano Lovers Newsletter is out now!
Piano News 2021 - 2022!
---------------------
My first professionally recorded piece
---------------------
Visit Maine, Meet Mr. Piano World
---------------------
Sell Your Piano on our world famous Piano Forums!
---------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
Forums RULES & HELP
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
Forum Statistics
Forums42
Topics211,311
Posts3,163,247
Members104,120
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Please Support Our Advertisers

Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways

Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver

 Best of Piano Buyer

PianoTeq Bechstein
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads



 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | MapleStreetMusicShop.com - Our store in Cornish Maine


© copyright 1997 - 2022 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5