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Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Rille Stark #1353889 01/20/10 06:33 AM
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BTW, there are some new CP5 demo songs available here:

http://www.yamahasynth.com/products/stage_pianos/cp5/

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
madshi #1353902 01/20/10 07:34 AM
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Rhodes sounds nice.

Pianos are pleasant but you can't make any more of a judgment than that with the demos. They have that Yamaha sound...the slightly intrusive bell-like thing a few notes above middle C. I KNOW Yamaha believe they make the best acoustic pianos and I understand from a marketing/corporate point of view why you only get a Yamaha sound on a Yamaha DP but with all their wealth of experience and technical know-how maybe it would be nice if at least they offered you an alternative. The best sampled/modelled result in the world is no good if you don't like what they've sampled or tried to emulate. An additional American or European piano sound would provide a much a more interesting, versatile instrument for their customers.

Steve


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Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
EssBrace #1353909 01/20/10 08:05 AM
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I have to agree with Steve above...the acoustics are definitively "Yamaha". A familiar sound to those who play Yamaha, and excellent for either sitting in the mix, or on top of it.

So far my recently sold Avant Grand sounds far more authentic, but I'm wondering if that characteristic that Steve speaks of, can be changed via the EQ.

The Rhodes pianos are really nice, but nothing so far has leaped out and said, "Buy me!"

I've got to hear the Hammond emulations as well as the strings patches, because I'd like to carry only one instrument if possible.

My CP-300 ain't gonna be replaced too soon, methinks.

Snazzy



Semper Gumby: Always flexible \:^)
Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
madshi #1353926 01/20/10 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by madshi
BTW, there are some new CP5 demo songs available here:

http://www.yamahasynth.com/products/stage_pianos/cp5/


Thanks. I had missed those. (Had only looked at the CP1 page.) The AP's sound pretty good, at least for the playing styles represented. I like what I'm hearing.

Last edited by Melodialworks Music; 01/20/10 09:13 AM.
Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
dewster #1353927 01/20/10 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by dewster


Originally Posted by Melodialworks Music
Yamaha apparently spent 5 years developing the CP1.

Wow, where did you hear that? Not that I don't believe it.



Notice that I said "apparently". It was one of things that the store sales rep (who attended NAMM) told me.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Melodialworks Music #1353954 01/20/10 09:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Melodialworks Music
Originally Posted by dewster

Originally Posted by Melodialworks Music
Yamaha apparently spent 5 years developing the CP1.

Wow, where did you hear that? Not that I don't believe it.

Notice that I said "apparently". It was one of things that the store sales rep (who attended NAMM) told me.

Interesting they don't use the term "man-years" anymore. When they did it was always some huge, and therefore more impressive sounding, number. It's a potentially better indication of the work put in to develop something. This could have been one guy working on it an hour a day for five years, or a large team beavering away 24/7 (though almost certainly something in between).

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Kawai James #1353997 01/20/10 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by KAWAI James
dewster, my apologies, I haven't been keeping up with the discussion on the other forum, however may I ask you to clarify what you mean by "came clean on the FM thing"?

The FM simulation is entirely modelled, is it not?

Over there I pointed out the skimpy MIDI implementation, one not very consistent with real FM parameters, and it seemed to me anyway that that is perhaps what prompted the more complete technical response from Yamaha (i.e. it's real 100% FM, not sure if that is what you consider to be modeled or not). Who really knows though. I'm coming to the realization that NAMM is a big musical party that just happens to involve new equipment, and if you aren't actually attending the party you're out in the cold.

When the Yamaha rep Athan (see Richard's post above) explained SCM he said it was "something of a play on words" and then goes on to use the word "modeled" for the things like EQ and reverb, so I guess I agree.

Most interesting, I thought, was that he says the EPs use what sounds to me like spectral envelopes, whereas the AP are just samples, with hammer stiffness and soundboard resonance as "modeled" (?) elements.

I think SCM started out for real in the EPs where it actually made sense as a term, and then someone ran with it and applied it to everything going on in the signal chain, pasting it at the top of the main table in their literature (which lumped the APs, EPs, and FM together under the SCM banner) etc.

I must say it's not looking too good for the APs in this trio of boards. If they're not using something like SCM to compress the AP samples, then they are likely using looping. I still think of the guys in one of those first videos saying it's really hard to hear the layer switching, which leads me to believe they are just doing that more smoothly somehow, but other than that it's just the same old layer thing.

The EPs, particularly the they way they are doing them, is the real new feature here, and the APs, while probably better than most DPs, are clearly secondary, with the FM dead last. As a result, my expectations of the APs have been correspondingly lowered. Anyone who was hoping for a full DX7 in there after hearing "real FM synth in there!" must be even more disappointed.

This is just me speculating, but less wildly this time as it is based on the direct statements of a Yamaha rep.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
dewster #1354028 01/20/10 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by dewster


This is just me speculating, but less wildly this time as it is based on the direct statements of a Yamaha rep.


So Dewster, tell me this...if you actually played the CP-1 or CP-5, and you really loved what you heard, would you buy one?

Or, are you just another speculator?

Snazzy


Semper Gumby: Always flexible \:^)
Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
dewster #1354083 01/20/10 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by dewster
Anyone who was hoping for a full DX7 in there after hearing "real FM synth in there!" must be even more disappointed.

Not really. Ok, a full DX7 FM synth implementation would have been nice. But personally, all I'm looking for is great AP and EP sounds. So if those 4 selected DX7 EPs in the CP1 play as good as the best DX7 EPs did, then that would be plenty good enough for me. Which other current DP can offer DX7 EP sounds in full FM quality? None, that's right. So I only see reason for praise here, not for complaints. My only complaint is that the top model lacks some important features, which the step down model has.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
snazzyplayer #1354103 01/20/10 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by snazzyplayer
So Dewster, tell me this...if you actually played the CP-1 or CP-5, and you really loved what you heard, would you buy one?

Oh, I'd buy the CP50 in a second if the CFIII was sufficiently good enough to record solo.

Here's the thing though: DPs are part computer, part algorithm, part the piano they actually sampled, etc. Once I am reasonably sure that the computer in there is up to snuff in terms of sufficiently supporting the algorithm they are using to play back the original piano (enough Flash or HD space if it is a pure sample, enough processor it it is largely modeled, some mix if it is some mix) only then do I start caring about how it sounds. If the computer isn't up to snuff, then I almost don't care how the keys feel, or which specific piano was sampled, etc.

Say someone is printing a very well written book on a somewhat lame printer. People who review it say the content is awesome, and from a distance the book looks fine, so you buy it. But up close you can easily see the dots that make up the fonts and pictures, and because of this when you actually sit down to read it you get eye fatigue and a headache, to the point where you can't concentrate and have to set the book aside, good content or no. Since most books are printed on sufficiently decent printers, we don't really think about the technical end of printing very much, and so we mainly discuss the content. But if most books were poorly printed you would most likely have print quality near the top of your list of things to find out about any promising new publication.

If the same were true for DPs (i.e. the hardware being technically sufficient), my interest in how they work would be much more academic. Other people (and I'm not trying to single anyone in particular out for ridicule) only seem to care about the sound when they play some piece on it or other. For me it all falls apart the second I hear any obvious compression artifacting.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
dewster #1354115 01/20/10 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by dewster
Originally Posted by snazzyplayer
So Dewster, tell me this...if you actually played the CP-1 or CP-5, and you really loved what you heard, would you buy one?

Oh, I'd buy the CP50 in a second if the CFIII was sufficiently good enough to record solo.



That's comforting to know. wink

I'll know if I want it after about an hour of playing it...I have my system of checking things out.

I think the CP-5 is the best of the bunch, so far, but again, I'll know once I've spent some quality time with it.

I try not to get bogged down with specs and details...that's mostly a waste of time and a path that goes nowhere...and I take other people's opinions as just that...other people's opinions...they'll be based on their own criteria, which will include brand loyalty, what celebrity plays it, and countless other drivel I don't have any interest in, or has no connection to my wants and needs.

It's best to test fresh, with as few preconceptions and technical fluff as possible...it's a musical instrument dammit, and it has to appeal to me in a way that specs and so called expert reviews can't express.

I knew right away that the Avant Grand was special...a level above anything else...it lacks vital sounds for my needs, like strings and perhaps a great jazz organ...otherwise I would have kept it. I couldn't see needing to use a midi module on a high end digital.

It's good that you're being fussy...that's a good trait...just don't let it get in the way.

Snazzy



Semper Gumby: Always flexible \:^)
Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
madshi #1354129 01/20/10 02:51 PM
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Originally Posted by madshi
Which other current DP can offer DX7 EP sounds in full FM quality? None, that's right. So I only see reason for praise here, not for complaints.

The DX7 was one of the best selling synths of all time. And since it is wholly algorithmic, a patch for it completely defines what can be an entirely new and different voice. I think it's a shame they didn't develop the CP series enough for it to take the ocean of patches floating around out there. I mean, they're probably 90% there already, why not go all the way?

Perhaps software is just getting too expensive to fully develop any sufficiently complex HW/SW music product for profit? Or maybe it was UI issues that held them back? I don't use FM much, but knowing I was getting a full DX7 in my DP would definitely give me a thrill. Four similar sounding patches with no control over the operators is a total bore.

Last edited by dewster; 01/20/10 05:06 PM.
Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
snazzyplayer #1354296 01/20/10 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by snazzyplayer
I'll know if I want it after about an hour of playing it...I have my system of checking things out.

I'll probably be able to rule it out in a matter of minutes. Failing that (and oh please be true) ruling it in might take a bit longer.

Originally Posted by snazzyplayer
I try not to get bogged down with specs and details...that's mostly a waste of time and a path that goes nowhere...

For me it is quite the contrary. Specs tend to be so poor that I can instantly rule almost everything out. Saves me tons of time and money (but would make me no fun at NAMM parties).

Originally Posted by snazzyplayer
and I take other people's opinions as just that...other people's opinions...they'll be based on their own criteria, which will include brand loyalty, what celebrity plays it, and countless other drivel I don't have any interest in, or has no connection to my wants and needs.

Yes I feel this too, particularly for the non-technical good reviews. I guess that's why I reacted so poorly to the reviews on that other forum - basically the CP1 experience blew them away so hard they couldn't reach the switch in their brain that engages conscious thought. I mean, what is one supposed to do with that except freak out? It's so impossible on its face that you have to start questioning everything, including whether money, drugs, or sex were involved. No real piano has ever affected me that strongly!

Originally Posted by snazzyplayer
It's best to test fresh, with as few preconceptions and technical fluff as possible...it's a musical instrument dammit, and it has to appeal to me in a way that specs and so called expert reviews can't express.

Perhaps once DPs get sufficiently technically complex and polished enough to offer a similar organic experience as a real piano I'll start seeing them that way. For now at least all I see is a box containing a tiny computer running mediocre software, with sometimes better or worse keys on top.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
dewster #1354642 01/21/10 09:33 AM
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Originally Posted by dewster
Four similar sounding patches with no control over the operators is a total bore.

If playing around with synth parameters and downloading patches from the internet is your main interest in a DP, then yes, the DX7 subset implemention in the CP1 is a bore. If very playable and good sounding sounds are your main interest, then the DX7 subset implementation in the CP1 is far from a bore. Actually it's probably much better in quality than what any DP competitor currently has to offer.

A few days/weeks ago we all suspected that the CP1 DX7 EPs were built by using a mixture of sampling and modeling (called "SCM"). And most of us were happy to get that. Weren't you reasonably happy, too, at that time, to get something better than just sampled DX7 EP sounds? Now we actually get better quality than we original suspected (true FM instead of SCM), but all you comment on is that you're disappointed. IMHO you're being very unfair here.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
madshi #1354905 01/21/10 04:56 PM
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Originally Posted by madshi
If playing around with synth parameters and downloading patches from the internet is your main interest in a DP, then yes, the DX7 subset implemention in the CP1 is a bore.

No, it's definitely not my main interest. But if I owned it, and a DX7 was in there, yes I would download patches to it, and yes I would play around with the parameters. It would add a whole new dimension to the instrument, one I and probably others would really welcome.

I think too that it would be a really nice selling point for the flagship model, and would go some way towards justifying it's huge price differential with the CP5.

Originally Posted by madshi
A few days/weeks ago we all suspected that the CP1 DX7 EPs were built by using a mixture of sampling and modeling (called "SCM"). And most of us were happy to get that. Weren't you reasonably happy, too, at that time, to get something better than just sampled DX7 EP sounds? Now we actually get better quality than we original suspected (true FM instead of SCM), but all you comment on is that you're disappointed.

When we thought the DX7 was sampled, what was in there seemed like maybe all they could do. Now that we know it is 100% FM, call me crazy, but I kind of expect more. It's like making a car with 4 gears but no gear shift. Actually it's worse than that.

Originally Posted by madshi
IMHO you're being very unfair here.

I'm not sure how one can be fair or unfair when it comes to large corporations. Yamaha manufacturers things to make money. They want our money, not for us to love or respect them, so in many ways our relationship with them is cold and somewhat adversarial. As long as I'm buying things from them, Yamaha doesn't care if I live or die. That doesn't make them monsters, it's just the way things are.

And not that I'm anyone by any means, but if they want my tiny bit of money they have to build things I need or want, at price points I consider to be reasonable for what I am getting.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Rille Stark #1355114 01/21/10 11:26 PM
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According to the literature on the CP1, it "uses a complete different method of playback than normal sampling technology. Rather than multi-velocity layers of samples, SCM uses granular parametric data so every nuance of the player’s touch is translated into expressive tone."

So the question is - how many velocity levels does the CP1 have, or does the above quote invalidate this question? On V-Piano, there is no velocity switching, because there are no samples - resulting in superior playability. Same for CP1? In terms of playability? This is an extremely important question. Is the playability of the V-Piano going to be matched by the playability of the CP1?

Dr. Popper? (I think you are the only one here who has played the CP1).

Lawrence

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Melodialworks Music #1355130 01/21/10 11:48 PM
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Judging by the Keyboard Mag video review, the acoustic pianos have virtually indistinguishable velocity layers, whereas the electric pianos have completely indistinguishable velocity layers. smile (or words to that effect). I.e - the Yamaha chap stopped short of stating that the A.P's were completely seamless, but he was quite adamant that the E.P's are in fact seamless.

Greg.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
sullivang #1355152 01/22/10 12:18 AM
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I could detect no velocity switching whatsoever on the CP1 or CP5 as I've previously said the only tiny thing I "might" have noticed was a slight artifact of some sort on the decay but I wasn't even 100% sure of it.



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Disclosure : I am professionally associated with Arturia but my sentiments are my own only.
Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Dr Popper #1355216 01/22/10 01:39 AM
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Everyone here is probably tired of me saying this, but I have a hard time hearing the velocity switching on our old P120 - it's not easy without surgically controlled MIDI data feeding it, and it's only a triple-strike I believe (and did I say it's really old?). Stretching is a bit easier to hear if you listen for it, and looping is super easy on almost any note.

That's why the "I almost can't detect any velocity switching" line in the CP1 video didn't impress me much. Now if they had been discussing looping I'd have been all ears. No one but the good Dr. has addressed this even once, which is either people just ignoring me (which I completely understand) or something to be taken as rather ominous.

That the EPs should have no discernible velocity switching makes sense from the info beaten out of Yamaha (so far) since they are the only voices that I would consider to be truly SCM (an acronym so abused in its infancy that someone should call the child protective services hot line).

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
dewster #1355236 01/22/10 02:24 AM
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No discernible stretching or looping on the CP1 or CP5 like you would hear on almost any other Yamaha DP.

Last edited by Dr Popper; 01/22/10 02:25 AM.

"I'm still an idiot and I'm still in love" - Blue Sofa - The Plugz 1981 (Tito Larriva)
Disclosure : I am professionally associated with Arturia but my sentiments are my own only.
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