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Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 #1156634
03/03/09 04:39 PM
03/03/09 04:39 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 3
T
twinkle0903 Offline OP
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twinkle0903  Offline OP
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Joined: Mar 2009
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We're planning to buy a digital piano for our daughter to practice at home. She will teach using upright piano & we can't afford to buy so we've decided to get a digital piano with weighted keys. We don't have any idea in music so if anyone could help us what to buy. We looked both the Roland & Yamaha models as indicated above. I personally want Roland HP 203 because of the sound that is close to upright piano. But my husband wants the Yamaha CLP 330 for a beginner student like our daughter. We wanted it to use for 3-4 years so as much as possible we would like to buy the one closest to upright piano when it comes to keys & sound. What I like about the CLP 340 is the ivory touch keys that they said as it is much closer to the keys of an upright piano.

Could anyone help us please.

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Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: twinkle0903] #1156639
03/03/09 04:42 PM
03/03/09 04:42 PM
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,011
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Horwinkle Offline
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Horwinkle  Offline
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I would narrow the choices to the HP203 and CLP340. They're both good.

I've seen the HP203 at $2000. The CLP340 is likely more than that.

Buy whichever one sounds and feels best to you (or to your daughter).

Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: Horwinkle] #1156685
03/03/09 05:38 PM
03/03/09 05:38 PM
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Underdog Offline
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I agree that the 340 is worth the upgrade from the 330 if it doesn't exceed your price ceiling.

To my 8 month trained fingers, I was constantly aware I was playing a keyboard when I was playing the 340. However, the sound of the thing is great! It definitely has the better sound system compared to the 203.

The Roland didn't fool me into thinking I was playing a real piano, but my fingers didn't scream 'DIGITAL' nearly as loudly while I was trying it out. However, the speakers in the 203 didn't impress me at all, and definitely holds the quality of the samples back. Also, the synthetic ivory on the 340 are better than the plastic of the 203.

The question is, would you actually USE the educational abilities of the CLP330/340? Or does it just sound nice right now?

Last edited by Underdog; 03/03/09 05:40 PM.
Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: Underdog] #1156693
03/03/09 05:57 PM
03/03/09 05:57 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 3
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twinkle0903 Offline OP
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twinkle0903  Offline OP
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Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 3
Thank you for your response. One more concern for Yamaha CLP 340 since it has an ivory touched keys, will you guys encounter or heard the same problem like for Roland 207 that the keytops having dandruff?

Appreciate your help.

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Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: twinkle0903] #1156818
03/03/09 10:01 PM
03/03/09 10:01 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 757
Tokyo, Japan
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Geoffk Offline
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Geoffk  Offline
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Tokyo, Japan
I have a Roland HP-207 and I haven't seen any problems with "dandruff". What's more, the demo HP-207 at the huge department store here which gets dozens of testers each day also looks fine. I think that this was just a problem with a few early production models and has long since been resolved.

I have played the Yamahas, the HP-203 and HP-207. Here is my take:

1. The Rolands have many different sounds (over 300), whereas the Yamahas have just a dozen, most of which are not impressive. I find this a lot o fun playing various styles of music.

2. The yamahas have a dryer, slightly brighter piano. The Rolan piano is slightly too bassy by default, but generally sounds better than the Yamaha to me.

3. The HP-203 has two large speakers but no small speakers (tweeters), which cuts the brightness a bit. The HP-207 has better speakers, so sounds a little better.

4. Both Rolands have string resonance which makes a huge difference. Play a chord on the Rolands and then press the pedal. Just like on a real piano, you'll hear the sound become resonant as "other strings" sound in tune. It's a great effect.

Between a CLP-340 and an HP-203, I think the Roland wins on every spec except for the Yamaha's extra tweeter speakers. Between a CLP-340 (or CLP-370) and a Roland HP-207, I think the Roland beats them both in everything. If it were my money, I'd buy the HP-203 (or an HP-207, if I had the money). But Yamaha has a lot of fans here, so if you like the Yamaha sound and touch better, than go ahead and buy one. It's like BMW vs. Mercedes, and neither one is really bad.

Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: Geoffk] #1156870
03/03/09 11:16 PM
03/03/09 11:16 PM
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Horwinkle Offline
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Horwinkle  Offline
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I found quite the opposite ...

I've not played a CLP-340, but I did try the CLP-240 (and bought it).

I didn't like the Roland sound nearly as well as the Yamaha.

I found both to be to bassy, but the Roland was intolerably so.

In general, the Roland's speakers were lame, especially considering that this is **not** a cheapo piano. But you might benefit from external speakers on both the Roland and the Yamaha.

The extra voices on the Roland weren't important. (I only need one.) smile

Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: Horwinkle] #1156881
03/03/09 11:35 PM
03/03/09 11:35 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
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Tokyo, Japan
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Geoffk Offline
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Geoffk  Offline
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Tokyo, Japan
Different strokes, as they say. Even if I preferred the Yamaha Piano sound, though, I'd miss the string resonance, "escapement" and other features. On the HP-207, you can easily equalize the sound to make it nice and even. I admit that this is harder on the HP-203, and the lack of tweeters makes it more noticeable as well. Even so, I still prefer it.

And I do play Jazz, New Age, etc., so having nice, usable Organs, Electric Pianos, Choirs and String sounds available is a non-trivial benefit for me.

Speakers on the HP-207 anyway are quite nice. The big ones are 16-inch, which is plenty large enough for bass, organ or low-end piano(and at 60 watts per channel, I find it's more than loud enough too). Again, the HP-203 is not as nice (with only two 12-inch speakers), but I used to play Electric piano and synth in a band with only a 2x12-inch guitar Amp, so I can't say that this is an inadequate arrangement--it's just not the best. I find that the 30 Watts per channel on the HP-203 can go as loud or louder than a regular piano too.

And all this just goes to reinforce my previous point--that each person has to play them and make their own decision. Obviously, L. Horwinkle and I draw different conclusions from the same instruments. And, obviously, he is wrong ;-) ...

Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: Geoffk] #1156895
03/03/09 11:59 PM
03/03/09 11:59 PM
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Horwinkle Offline
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Horwinkle  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,011
Originally Posted by Geoffk
Speakers on the HP-207 anyway are quite nice. The big ones are 16-inch, which is plenty large enough for bass, organ or low-end piano(and at 60 watts per channel, I find it's more than loud enough too). Again, the HP-203 is not as nice (with only two 12-inch speakers).

I've not seen any DPs on the market with 12" speakers.

Roland specs show that the 203 has 4.7" speakers, and the 207 has 6.3" speakers (same as the Yamaha).

Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: Horwinkle] #1156900
03/04/09 12:17 AM
03/04/09 12:17 AM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 757
Tokyo, Japan
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Geoffk Offline
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Geoffk  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2008
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Tokyo, Japan
Oops!! My mistake. I was confusing Centimeters and inches. Actually, considering how small the speakers are, thy sound better than I would have expected.

That's really interesting. I guess I'll have to look into external speakers and see what kind of improvement that would make.

Thanks for the correction
Geoff

Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: Geoffk] #1156920
03/04/09 01:13 AM
03/04/09 01:13 AM
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Horwinkle Offline
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Horwinkle  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,011
Some people use active monitors. But the low-price ones aren't very good and they often have quality problems (or so I've read in the forums and reviews). You need to spend at least $400 for good ones, although the lesser ones might still be an improvement over the DP built-in speakers.

But I just can't see spending that much for 2-way speakers with runty 6" woofers. So I bought a pair of used speakers from Craig's List. For $100 I got a pair of 3-way JBL speakers with 10" woofers, about 36" tall. I use an equalizer to give it a little upper-mid boost and to cut the bass just a tad. I drive it with a Sanyo 100 watt stereo unit. This is a big improvement over the internal speakers. I posted pictures here.

I've had this set up for several weeks, but just today I thought I'd try something new. I took out the equalization, switched to the slap bass voice, turned up the volume, and ran scales in the lower two octaves. The piano shakes. The table next to it shakes. The front windows shake. The walls hum. Not bad for $100. (I wouldn't recommend these settings for piano voice ... the sound would be unnatural. But it was fun just for a quick tryout.)

Re: Roland HP 203 versus Yamaha CLP 330 or 340 [Re: Horwinkle] #1156947
03/04/09 03:25 AM
03/04/09 03:25 AM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 757
Tokyo, Japan
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Geoffk Offline
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Geoffk  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 757
Tokyo, Japan
That sounds like fun. I used to do that in high school with a Minimoog and a friend's 18" bass amp. We'd have the cone thrashing so slowly you could count it going in and out. The next floor up, plates were walking off of tables. Oh the days...

Anyway, with that setup, it's no wonder that you think Yamahas sound great. Even a Williams Encore would probably rock.

Cheers
Geoff


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