Best digital piano @ ~$1000??

Discussion in 'Fine Living, Home, Design & Auto' started by Sherman90, Jan 16, 2011.

  1. Sherman90

    Sherman90 Senior member

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    My soul is crying out to get back to the classical repertoire. Of course, I'd love to own a real piano, but living in an apartment can make things difficult...

    In any case, for those of you in the know, what model keyboards/workstations/digital pianos would you recommend me looking into at ~$1000 (+/- $200)? Used, of course. My primary aim is to practise in the traditional style, so my priorities are full 88 weighted keys and an emphasis on rich piano tone. As for output, I could rely on built-in speakers but could also justify spending some extra cash on some monitors. I'm fairly involved in home recording so the extra cash would be justified.

    I've also thought of tinkering with electronic music in the near future, so anything competent in that regard (apart from MIDI and VST use) would be nice.
     
  2. musicguy

    musicguy Senior member

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    I was on the look for a good digital piano for a special project overseas. Piano isn't my main instrument, but I took piano lessons for many years and am rather capable pianist. The best I could find was the Yamaha CP series. I've only tried the CP33 and CP300, but they were better than any others. The touch was the closest to a real piano. The difference between the CP33 and CP300 are the CP300 has built in speakers. The CP33 would require purchasing separate speakers. It's a good amount cheaper also.

    Stay away from Casio. Some people like Korg or Roland, but I felt the Yamaha Cp series were a good bit better as a real piano replacement. I used to own a Roland digital piano that cost around 3 grand about 10 years ago that was just crap.

    Go to Guitar Center or someplace like that and try them all out. You can also go to a piano store if you're looking for something that looks more like an upright, but many of them are just crap.

    I haven't tried the latest CP series pianos.
     
  3. tagutcow

    tagutcow Senior member

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    My first advice… take musicguy's advice before mine. He's much more discerning than I am. [​IMG] Yeah the Yamaha P120/P155/CP300 come in exactly at your price range, and they sound pretty great. Apparently many people still prefer the P120, so that's an option on the used market. All much better than the (more expensive) Roland RD series as far as grand pianos go. The Korg SV-1 gets rave reviews from everyone, but it's $2000, and you'll be paying for lots of organs and electric pianos you might not be interested in. Honestly, I'm gonna say I think a used Fantom XR nails the price/performance curve, especially if you want to start working in electronic music. You can get them used for $650 on ebay, and you get a full-featured sampler, a synth with a bazillion sounds, and a pretty decent grand piano:
    IMPORTANT NOTICE: No media files are hosted on these forums. By clicking the link below you agree to view content from an external website. We can not be held responsible for the suitability or legality of this material. If the video does not play, wait a minute or try again later. I AGREE

    TIP: to embed Youtube clips, put only the encoded part of the Youtube URL, e.g. eBGIQ7ZuuiU between the tags. (Strangely, the piano is much better than the one on their current-generation Fantom Gs) Of course, it's just a module (the glowy blue and red thing in the lower right) so you'll have to get a controller or a synth. If you don't mind using a separate controller, there are a host of other options, like the Synthogy software piano, or even the GeneralMusic RPX module. But of course, you should hear all these thing in person. And when you can't hear it in person, YouTube is your friend. You'll know you're making an informed purchase if you've watched so many product demos that you feel like you'll smash you head through the monitor if you hear another guy talking with a German or Japanese accent!
     
  4. eg1

    eg1 Senior member

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    We have a Yamah P-85 that we got when our kids' piano teacher complained about the old Mason & Risch upright that my wife inherited from her father. It is serviceable.
     
  5. Sherman90

    Sherman90 Senior member

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    Looks like the CP-33 should fit the bill nicely. If I could find a decent example at a good price I'd probably cop. I'd just flip it when I move into my new apartment and buy a grand anyhow [​IMG] Going to look into this further. Thanks so far, gentlemen!
     
  6. kruze

    kruze Senior member

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    Yamaha s80 or s90. End of your search.
     
  7. office drone

    office drone Senior member

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    What is the issue with Casio? Just plain bad quality?
     
  8. kruze

    kruze Senior member

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    What is the issue with Casio? Just plain bad quality?

    Please see my post above.
     
  9. musicguy

    musicguy Senior member

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    What is the issue with Casio? Just plain bad quality?

    Everything... the action, the sounds... just awful.
     
  10. Sherman90

    Sherman90 Senior member

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    Do any of you guys know much about the CLP series of digital pianos? They seem to be very expensive, more-or-less one-trick ponies...i.e. polished, refined looking digital pianos. What kind of niche do these fill? I mean, they're damned expensive, so why wouldn't you just put the same amount of money in a high end workstation with a good grand piano sound built in?? Reason I ask, a CLP-330 just popped up in the local classifieds...and I'm thinking about it... Here's the CLP-380, basically the highest end CLP available... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-wKu...eature=related
     
  11. Thracozaag

    Thracozaag Senior member

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    You might get extremely lucky and find a Yamaha Avant upright on sale, or used?
     
  12. computerpro3

    computerpro3 Senior member

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    Digital pianos around $1000 suck. End of story. For classical repertoire you're SOL.

    I researched extensively, played literally every digital piano in the price range on the market, and bought a Kawai CA51 for around $2000 with real wooden keys and it still is a poor approximation of even a cheap acoustic grand. I thought I could live with it but in the end I still make the drive to school to practice on a Steinway and instead simply use the Kawai for learning notes.

    Digital pianos in this price range simply don't play well enough to polish advanced classical repertoire. The keys are too light and they don't repeat fast enough for certain passages.
     
  13. computerpro3

    computerpro3 Senior member

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    You might get extremely lucky and find a Yamaha Avant upright on sale, or used?
    For $1000? Extremely lucky is putting it mildly, considering MSRP is north of 8k.
     
  14. tagutcow

    tagutcow Senior member

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  15. TylerDurden

    TylerDurden Senior member

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    I have a Yamaha that I bought for $100, it has keys that depend on how hard you press the keys for loudness. It does sound like a piano. But It's not full size. I'd say get a full size, and have weighted keys or keys that feel like a piano.
     

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