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Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Melodialworks Music #1361232 01/29/10 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Melodialworks Music
I'll post my impressions later this evening.

Am I the only one here biting their fingernails and refreshing the page every two minutes?

Someone who beta tests PC pianos & piano samples, and who owns a freakin' V-Piano (and is dissatisfied with the sound, no less!) is the perfect person for this mission.

Godspeed Lawrence, I hope you brought some good headphones with you behind enemy lines.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Colleen_500 #1361235 01/29/10 09:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Colleen_500
Originally Posted by pianodilemma



That you claim to play piano and can't realize this is puzzling, but I won't make an issue of it.


There is really not much of an issue you can make.

I adapt very quickly to different keyboard actions; some people do not.

The Avant Grand was a breakthrough in digital design. I played one, and it's the best electronic piano made anywhere, if one wants to be swept up in the experience of an acoustic piano without the fuss and muss. These past years Yamaha have been changing, and are focusing more on the player's experience when playing, and I feel these CP pianos are the by-product of this alteration in thinking. Colleen


I'm the same way with different actions...never a problem.

When you think of it, guitar players usually play/own several guitars, each with it own action...they adjust pretty easy.

I'm also with you on the Avant Grand....I've often described it as "an experience" rather than just a play. I sold mine, because I expect them to come up with an even more featured model.

Yamaha certainly seems to have a different approach lately...like you, I'm really looking forward to the CP-series.

Snazzy



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Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
snazzyplayer #1361239 01/29/10 09:55 PM
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And here I was just about to formally introduce you two. smile

*ahem*

Colleen, meet Snazzy. Sanzzy, this is Colleen.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
EssBrace #1361250 01/29/10 10:10 PM
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I believe ChrisA/dewster are spot on about the intended purpose for these new models - the emphasis appears to be on electric pianos (hence the amp simulations), rather than acoustic.

I'm sure the acoustic piano sounds are absolutely fantastic (they certainly impressed my colleagues who attended NAMM), and will offer a considerable amount of 'tweak-ability' - second only to the V-Piano - allowing performers to match that popular 'Elton John' sound.

Therefore it arguably doesn't matter if the keyboard is not graded and a little light - these new instruments are not intended to replace an acoustic. They're for band players who need a barking Rhodes and an acoustic patch that 'cuts through' the mix.

Individuals that play a largely classical repertoire (or 'big-time concertos' as one of the more idiosyncratic PW members would say) are not the target audience for these new CP instruments. Such players that require the touch of an acoustic piano will, as others have suggested, purchase a P155 (or successor model), Clavinova, or an instrument from an alternative brand such as Roland or KAWAI.

Cheers,
James
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Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
snazzyplayer #1361256 01/29/10 10:15 PM
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Originally Posted by snazzyplayer


When you think of it, guitar players usually play/own several guitars, each with it own action...they adjust pretty easy.

I'm also with you on the Avant Grand....I've often described it as "an experience" rather than just a play. I sold mine, because I expect them to come up with an even more featured model. Yamaha certainly seems to have a different approach lately...like you, I'm really looking forward to the CP-series.

Snazzy



Hi Snazzy,

I think we may have a mutual friend here in Canada.

What a great analogy with the guitars and players; I could never understand why people made such a fuss from switching from one type keyboard instrument to another. I think it mostly affects the die-hard, starched shorts piano players. Hee hee.

If the rumors are true, we may be seeing another Avant Grand next year, but it is unclear whether it will be below the N2, or above the N3.

I understand you are a vintage synthesizer collector; how very interesting. The only things I collect are shoes; I'm a regular Imelda Marcos. Ha Ha.

I believe you and I and Dewster are all very excited about these new CP pianos. I'm looking forward to hearing Lawrence's review.

Colleen




Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Colleen_500 #1361259 01/29/10 10:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Colleen_500
Originally Posted by pianodilemma


That you claim to play piano and can't realize this is puzzling, but I won't make an issue of it.


There is really not much of an issue you can make.

I adapt very quickly to different keyboard actions; some people do not.


I admit I've gotten better over time at adapting, but I don't want to veer too far from my primary instrument. If you think adapting to different piano actions is difficult, try adjusting from a four-string Geddy Lee Fender Jazz bass to a six-string Warwick Thumb. Doable, but if you have small hands it can be very challenging, and if the action is too high may not even be possible to play at the same speed on both. The other aspect of my comment was simply one of your statement regarding graded actions being marketing. From a pure technical perspective, and from the perspective of those it's important to, it's a critical feature. That you don't value it does not mean that others find no value in it. But it's a very real and tangible feature regardless of your opinion or mine.

Quote
I still think you are making a big fuss over something that's all done. Do you expect to change it, now that it is in production?


I already answered what I can change and what I can't. Please re-read my post above if you have any questions on this. However, I believe that a proposed product line merits continued discussion in order to explore what might or might not be good in general for people.

Quote
But, persist if you must; I think your energy and persistence would be better directed at the home piano division. The "P" will be made over, so why not start a thread on what you (or we) would like to see on the next model? It's rather late discussing the CP series, but a new "P" series won't be here for about two years, unless they are planning to produce a model above the P-155.


I can't do that, because I technically haven't excluded the CP50. Granted, it's a lot more of a compromise from the availability of EPs and APs, but it's also cheaper and lighter.

Quote
So, get your druthers in now, while it's possible to steer the good ship Yamaha (more like a tanker) slowly towards a super portable home piano.


If Yamaha cares enough to change in the next three months, or six months, then so be it. I'm here to air valid concerns. If they don't care, so be it. I'm still going to discuss their pianos, existing or proposed, as I see fit.

Quote
I think it's silly, and much too late, to criticize the CP pianos; the horse is gone, and it's too late to close the barn door. We will soon enough know if Yamaha was wise or not to make these instruments ungraded. Remember, they have researched this market ahead of production; you are trying to find a reason behind it after the fact; you won't find it, unless you know somebody deep within Yamaha's design department.


It's not silly to criticize. The ability to criticize is one of the most important aspects of any process, be it business or technical or educational or political. This is an open forum, and we're free to make our opinions made known. If we don't criticize, we don't improve or learn. Everything is ok as-is.

Quote
The Avant Grand was a breakthrough in digital design. I played one, and it's the best electronic piano made anywhere, if one wants to be swept up in the experience of an acoustic piano without the fuss and muss. These past years Yamaha have been changing, and are focusing more on the player's experience when playing, and I feel these CP pianos are the by-product of this alteration in thinking.

Colleen


I agree that Avant Grand is fantastic even if it's not portable. Obviously, some aspects of it could be (the electronics and keys), and some just can't be (like the speaker system and its cabinet). What I guess you seem to not be able to acknowledge is that some of us value some of those features even if we can't get all of them. Studio monitors are great but don't replicate the sound the same way as the Avant Grand's speakers and chassis do.

What is quite fascinating to me, however, is (a) that you joined simply to comment to me, (b) your continued avoidance of discussion of a proposed set of features which might have made more sense, (c) your certainty that Yamaha people are reading this forum, and (d) your continued insistence on referring the P series. Is there a Myspace or Facebook page for your band? I would really like to see the type of music you play so I could get a better perspective of possibly understanding why you might not value graded actions (e.g. lots of synth parts where a straight-up synth action might be better, soundscaping, etc.).


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Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
ChrisA #1361265 01/29/10 10:30 PM
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Originally Posted by ChrisA
Originally Posted by pianodilemma

b. In making a flagship stage piano with non-graded action, they encroach on the feature set of the S90XS product line.


Perhaps the S90 is not going to be continued. This could be part of a reorganization of the various product lines. We don't really know.

We don't have access to their market research. It could be they found enough keyboard player who complained about "those darn grand piano-like" key actions on their electric pianos.


You're 100% correct. All I'm wondering is why Yamaha hasn't made an affirmative statement on this. I think it's fine to have a DP that tends towards EP roots (which is patently obvious by the sounds), but some of us have been forgotten about and some other manufacturers have some suddenly more attractive alternatives that could have easily been fulfilled.

The amount of effort to fully develop and launch a product is not something that would be warranted by such a short product lifespan. They'd just lose money, and there's no point to losing money unless you're strategically displacing someone else's product (which I'm certain the S90XS hasn't).


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Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
pianodilemma #1361267 01/29/10 10:33 PM
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Originally Posted by pianodilemma
Still don't know if you can attach three regular piano pedals


Judging from the specifications table printed in the new CP brochure and listed on the Yamahasynth.com website, I don't believe so. The CP1 includes a three pedal unit (brand new?), and offers sustain, sostenuto, soft, and assiganable foot switch connectors. However the CP5/CP50 includes the regular FC3 pedal, and just sustain and assignable foot switch connectors.

Kind regards,
James
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Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Kawai James #1361275 01/29/10 10:44 PM
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Originally Posted by KAWAI James
Originally Posted by pianodilemma
Still don't know if you can attach three regular piano pedals


Judging from the specifications table printed in the new CP brochure and listed on the Yamahasynth.com website, I don't believe so. The CP1 includes a three pedal unit (brand new?), and offers sustain, sostenuto, soft, and assiganable foot switch connectors. However the CP5/CP50 includes the regular FC3 pedal, and just sustain and assignable foot switch connectors.

Kind regards,
James
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That's what I thought too. However, I'm wondering if MIDI pedals might work. Somewhat clunky, but ok to me.


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Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
pianodilemma #1361278 01/29/10 10:51 PM
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Originally Posted by pianodilemma


What is quite fascinating to me, however, is (a) that you joined simply to comment to me, (b) your continued avoidance of discussion of a proposed set of features which might have made more sense, (c) your certainty that Yamaha people are reading this forum, and (d) your continued insistence on referring the P series. Is there a Myspace or Facebook page for your band? I would really like to see the type of music you play so I could get a better perspective of possibly understanding why you might not value graded actions (e.g. lots of synth parts where a straight-up synth action might be better, soundscaping, etc.).


Let me see; I'll try and address your fascinations.

(a)I actually registered two days ago, and my response to your post was merely because I wondered why you criticized Yamaha's approach to the CP series.

(b) I'm simply not interested.

(c)I know what I know, and I'm simply not at liberty to reveal names.

(d) The "P" series seemed to be more what you'd be looking for; the CP's ungraded action is not to your liking.

The "band" is a church group, and no, we're not on Facebook. I played in a band in high school as well.

I don't feel graded actions have no value; I simply think Yamaha's idea for an ungraded actioned stage piano is better than if it was graded. I do feel that graded isn't necessary for my playing, and I do feel it was only implemented on acoustic pianos because of the inherent nature of the instrument.

Wouldn't you rather if all keyboards had an even action? If they could make an acoustic piano with ungraded keys, would you still prefer graded?

The only time I would prefer a synth type action would be for organ playing, but I already have an A-100 with a 122 Leslie cabinet at the church.

Do you play in a band?

Colleen








Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Colleen_500 #1361293 01/29/10 11:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Colleen_500


I understand you are a vintage synthesizer collector; how very interesting. The only things I collect are shoes; I'm a regular Imelda Marcos. Ha Ha. Colleen


Yes, I am Colleen, but it is a modest collection compared to some...I do have two that are considered very rare...a Korg PS-3200, and a Yamaha GS-1.

Yes, our mutual friend was instrumental (pun intended) in my procuring these two synths...I was up to see him a few weeks ago and got back on the 26th. Cool guy.

I'm probably going to go for the CP-5, although I'll be trying the CP-1 as soon as it arrives at the store.

PM me and I'll give you my phone # and email addy.

Snazzy


Semper Gumby: Always flexible \:^)
Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
dewster #1361297 01/29/10 11:24 PM
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Originally Posted by dewster
Originally Posted by Melodialworks Music
I'll post my impressions later this evening.

Am I the only one here biting their fingernails and refreshing the page every two minutes?

Someone who beta tests PC pianos & piano samples, and who owns a freakin' V-Piano (and is dissatisfied with the sound, no less!) is the perfect person for this mission.

Godspeed Lawrence, I hope you brought some good headphones with you behind enemy lines.


Raises hand. I'm with you dewster, really looking foward to Lawrence's comments on the CP-1. As for the action, I'm never going to play a real Steinway, Rhodes, Hammond, Wurly etc and whatever I decide to buy is going to be the only thing I'm playing so if the action feels good to me graded or not graded won't make a bit of difference. Of course I'm just a bare beginner using a Casio PX-800 at home (graded action) so my needs are much less detailed than those of you gigging. Can't wait to try em out, right now the CP-5 seems to be the leading Yamaha product for me with price/features considered.

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
dewster #1361309 01/29/10 11:51 PM
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Originally Posted by dewster
Originally Posted by Melodialworks Music
I'll post my impressions later this evening.

Am I the only one here biting their fingernails and refreshing the page every two minutes?

Someone who beta tests PC pianos & piano samples, and who owns a freakin' V-Piano (and is dissatisfied with the sound, no less!) is the perfect person for this mission.

Godspeed Lawrence, I hope you brought some good headphones with you behind enemy lines.


Well, I'm back. My trip certainly didn't work out as planned.

First, my wife decided to go with me, since we "haven't seen each other much all week". (I could hardly refuse her, but it meant that the first time we went to the store, she sat in the car waiting - in the very cold car, so I of course was feeling the pressure to rush). I don't EVER recall her volunteering before to go with me on a trip to the music store. D'oh! (First time for everything, I guess).

It turned out that it didn't matter much, though. Talk about heck. The CP1 was nicely situated, with tiny Yamaha monitors of some sort. I turned them off, and plugged in my AKG K240 (600 ohms) headphones. Right behind me was a giant acoustic grand, and you guessed it, no sooner did I start playing than some BASTARD started banging on the grand. I did manage to scare him off using my "teacher look" BUT, then another acoustic grand started up. (I was thinking, man those acoustic grands are LOUD and really like bullies, at least given the environment and what I was trying to accomplish). Then the trombone started up, and the guitars in the background, and you get the idea. At this point I decided to rescue my sweetie waiting in the freezer, er, car. We went to an Indian restaurant, had a nice dinner, and after I realized that I could return to the music store with 15 min. 'til close. It should be quieter then, right? Well, not exactly.

When I arrived for my second visit, there was a girl pounding an acoustic grand. She might have even been pounding ON an acoustic grand, but I'm not sure there was actually a distinction! A sales dude asked what I thought of the CP1, and I explained that I had no clue, because I couldn't hear over the grand. He politely kicked her off. (Turns out she WORKED at the store, and was I guess putting in time until closing). The store was still noisy, but less so than before. Still, very very hard to do any real critical listening.

My true impressions will have to wait for another more successful (quieter environment) visit.

However, my initial impression - comparing to V-Piano, which is where I'm coming from.

1) action - graded or not graded is irrelevant. (Play it if you think it will be a factor, and then decide). Much lighter than V-Piano, in the sense that less effort produces greater effect, for example accenting. The action seemed lighter to me than V-Piano. I couldn't tell for sure, in the noisy environment, if it was quieter than V-Piano's, but I suspect it was. The CP1 action will take a bit of getting used to, having played the V-Piano's so much.

2) sound - I checked out only the four AP patches. The sound is much less processed than V-Piano's. More authentic. However, I REALLY needed it quieter to make a proper assessment. I really liked what I did manage to hear, but . . . . I need to go back when it's quiet. I'll only need a few minutes, maybe 10, to be sure. Fantastic bass on one of the S6 patches - very authentic, and using headphones, no less!

3) dynamic range - superb, freaky, greater than V-Piano's which was already superb. Better? I'm not so sure. At some point the dynamic range becomes too great, and unnatural. However, this is probably easy to deal with after getting more accustomed to the action.

4) velocity curves - the default ("normal") was fine. "Wide" was interesting, and possibly useful, but again, not much time or environmental quality to try out and assess properly.

5) build quality - excellent - feels like a real instrument

6) controls - I liked the six knobs - very intuitive (I had studied the manual ahead of time, but it is pretty straight forward. Tweaking bass/mid/high was effective. I tried tweaking the reverb, but couldn't hear any changes. (I guess I didn't read the manual well enough!)

7) screen - fine

8) I liked one of each of the two AP types better than the other. If they are the two that will be in the CP5, then that would become quite tempting.

9) the pedal unit is bad ass - solid, with the length of the pedal being "proper". (With V-Piano the pedal's feel too short, stubby, and you feel you can't get your toes properly seated on them properly. You shouldn't in any way notice the mechanics of the pedals). With the V-Piano I do, with the CP1, I don't.

There is probably more I can add, but my wife is wanting my company. (After 31 years of marriage, I've learned not to ignore her! Actually, truthfully, after 31 years of marriage we are better friend than ever. How cool is that?)

Sorry, I feel like I've let the team down, in terms of expressing my impressions, but the noisy store and limited time are to blame.

Am I interested enough to try again? Absolutely.

Lawrence




Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Colleen_500 #1361312 01/29/10 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Colleen_500



I believe you and I and Dewster are all very excited about these new CP pianos. I'm looking forward to hearing Lawrence's review.



Don't forget Dr Popper. He has already ordered a CP1 AND a CP5.

How cool is that?

Lawrence

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Melodialworks Music #1361318 01/30/10 12:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Melodialworks Music


Don't forget Dr Popper. He has already ordered a CP1 AND a CP5.

How cool is that?

Lawrence


I'm immediately envious of Dr. Popper. (Just kidding) Ha Ha.

I am envious of you, Lawrence, having had at least an opportunity, however brief and distressing, to get a feel for the CP-1's action.

We'll be waiting with great anticipation for your follow-up, and of course, Dr.Popper's valuable impressions as well.

It sounds encouraging, for sure.

Thank you for your review.

Colleen

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Melodialworks Music #1361363 01/30/10 01:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Melodialworks Music
Sorry, I feel like I've let the team down, in terms of expressing my impressions, but the noisy store and limited time are to blame.

Lawrence thank you so much! Not a let-down at all. Please do thank your wife too for putting up with all this. I'm hoping these CPs pan out for everyone wanting a decent AP patch in a DP - if they don't, well story of my DP life - but between your experiences and those of the good Dr. Popper it is very encouraging so far.

I apologize for putting you on the spot. But dude, you actually touched one!

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Melodialworks Music #1361384 01/30/10 02:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Melodialworks Music
Originally Posted by Colleen_500



I believe you and I and Dewster are all very excited about these new CP pianos. I'm looking forward to hearing Lawrence's review.



Don't forget Dr Popper. He has already ordered a CP1 AND a CP5.

How cool is that?

Lawrence



Yes Yamaha have been very good to me Lawrence and I can't wait to get the CP1 hopefully next week. A friend of mine got his yesterday (and this is a guy who has played for years with a major act and sold literally millions upon millions of CD's) his quote "its the best piano I've ever played ...period" I'm thinking that this is the real deal.


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Disclosure : I am professionally associated with Arturia but my sentiments are my own only.
Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
dewster #1361463 01/30/10 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by dewster

I apologize for putting you on the spot. But dude, you actually touched one!


Dude, don't be getting me excited . . . !

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
Dr Popper #1361464 01/30/10 08:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Dr Popper

Yes Yamaha have been very good to me


I'd already figured that, due to your VIP status, but your enthusiasm for the instrument is sincere, IMHO.

Lawrence

Re: New stage pianos from Yamaha!
pianodilemma #1361469 01/30/10 08:24 AM
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Originally Posted by pianodilemma
NW-piano wood slapped onto what appears to be a S90XS' action.

How can you make such a call without ever actually having played the action?

It seems that (see post in the other forum) Yamaha experimented with various actions (some graded, some not) and decided on the CP1/CP5 action based on the feedback they received. Whether the CP1/CP5 action is a totally new development or just an older action with NW slapped onto it, we don't know. And it doesn't really matter. The only thing that matters is how good the final result is. Personally, everything else being equal, I might have preferred a graded action. But I'd definitely like a good non-graded action *MUCH* better than an average graded action.

Originally Posted by pianodilemma
The product line should, in my opinion, look like this:

[...]

Digital Pianos:
CP50 - GH action, SCM engine with more limited selection of APs and EPs
CP5 - GH3 action, SCM and AWM2 engine

And maybe those actions, while being graded, would be worse than what the CP1/CP5 has? You know, graded or not graded is not the only thing that matters.

I'm not saying that there's no reason to mourn the absense of the graded action. But I think that action quality should only be judged after having actually played it.

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