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Yamaha "GH" the same across models? #1473272
07/13/10 01:40 AM
07/13/10 01:40 AM
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 166
Alberta, Canada
Glen R. Offline OP
Full Member
Glen R.  Offline OP
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Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 166
Alberta, Canada
My understanding from reading this forum is that Yamaha "Graded Hammer" (and "Graded Hammer Effect") are the same technology. What I've read into it (perhaps naively) is that the entire key bed would be the same in every model that has "Graded Hammer" (similarly for "Graded Hammer Standard" and "GH3").

I was just at my local yamaha dealer and tried a YDP-S31 out of curiosity (I know it's a step-down from the 140). It felt "mushy" compared to my YDP-140, but they're both described as having Graded Hammer Standard. So either my assessment of the S31 is off, or GHS doesn't necessarily mean one-specific action.

Furthermore, I did a bit of research and it appears that "Graded Hammer" first appeared in 2001 (the P-120 and CVP-209, among others). It strikes me as strange that there would be no tweaks to the action in 9 years--or are the tweaks new actions like the GH3?

So I have two questions:
1 - Does any Yamaha DP with "GH" have identical actions? (Similarly for "GHS", "GH3", etc)

2 - If yes to (1), doesn't it seem strange that there would be no tweaks to "GH" since 2001?


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1926 Heintzman Upright, Kawai ES7
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Re: Yamaha "GH" the same across models? [Re: Glen R.] #1473276
07/13/10 01:57 AM
07/13/10 01:57 AM
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 54
Czech Republic
pesk Offline
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pesk  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 54
Czech Republic
It's not an answer but interesting video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bR4KjsZ3UWM

Re: Yamaha "GH" the same across models? [Re: Glen R.] #1473278
07/13/10 02:03 AM
07/13/10 02:03 AM
Joined: May 2010
Posts: 153
Germany
U
Upright Offline
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Upright  Offline
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U

Joined: May 2010
Posts: 153
Germany
Here in the forum I read, that the GH and the GH3 have the same touch and feel, with the difference that the GH3 has a third sensor for better repetition. I cannot confirm this. Playing in the store the GH and the GH3 feel very different. Even the GH3 in the different pianos don't feel the same.


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Re: Yamaha "GH" the same across models? [Re: Upright] #1473294
07/13/10 03:27 AM
07/13/10 03:27 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,449
Vught, The Netherlands
Dave Horne Offline
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Dave Horne  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,449
Vught, The Netherlands
This is also not an answer but just some of my thoughts on this.

To be perfectly honest when I test drive any stage piano I don't read the advertising hype regarding the keyboard action; I just play the keyboard and either I like it or I don't.

And the comment regarding no tweaks to the 'GH' since 2001 ... ?

My take on GH ... Graded Hammer is this - all the keys are the same except those that are even lighter in weight. I personally don't look at graded hammers as a benefit since 99 times out of 100 the keyboard actions are too light to begin with, having some keys even lighter (that's what GH is, right?) is just advertising hype as far as I'm concerned. Let's face it, we can't be keyboard purists if we're playing digital keyboards.

Pianos are a lot like breakfast cereals. How many different ways can you market corn flakes. They have to improve the packaging, change the color of the packaging, add more salt, remove excess salt, add more sugar, remove excess sugar and so on. I'm pretty certain it's the same with keyboards.

If we were to closely examine the action of an acoustic grand, when was the last major tweak there? Apart from replacing some wooden parts with composites, when was the last major change to keyboard actions?

I trust I didn't come across as being too grumpy. smile





website | mp3 files | Yamaha AvantGrand N3 | Roland RD 2000 | Sennheiser HD 598 headphones
Re: Yamaha "GH" the same across models? [Re: Dave Horne] #1473317
07/13/10 05:03 AM
07/13/10 05:03 AM
Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 15,585
Hamamatsu, Japan
Kawai James Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Kawai James  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 15,585
Hamamatsu, Japan
Breakfast cereals ≠ piano keyboards

James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 & occasional rare groove player.

"I agree that the User Manual is very good." - arc7urus, March 2019
Re: Yamaha "GH" the same across models? [Re: Kawai James] #1473325
07/13/10 05:58 AM
07/13/10 05:58 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,449
Vught, The Netherlands
Dave Horne Offline
6000 Post Club Member
Dave Horne  Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,449
Vught, The Netherlands
advertising hype = advertising hype

Make something a tiny bit different - it doesn't have to be better, just different; give it a fancy name - preferably a scientific name that means nothing, and you've created a feature the competitor doesn't have.

Let's make a list of quasi scientific features that exist on today's pianos. I'll go first ...

SuperNATURAL Piano sound engine
Spatial Acoustic Sampling
Progressive Harmonic Imaging
Ivory Touch Key Tops (not a trace of ivory, but that's not the point)
reflective Polished Ebony finish (I thought polished meant reflective)
... and the list goes on ...


I'm not sure what those terms mean, but damn, don't they sound good!





website | mp3 files | Yamaha AvantGrand N3 | Roland RD 2000 | Sennheiser HD 598 headphones
Re: Yamaha "GH" the same across models? [Re: Dave Horne] #1473390
07/13/10 09:17 AM
07/13/10 09:17 AM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 3,164
Sydney, Australia
S
sullivang Offline
3000 Post Club Member
sullivang  Offline
3000 Post Club Member
S

Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 3,164
Sydney, Australia
The sound and velocity response can make the action feel different, even though it is identical. I.e - even just playing the one DP, if you change the preset and/or the velocity response, you may perceive that the mechanical feel has changed, even though it has not. Many folks are reporting this type of phenomenon in the new CP1 & CP5 digital pianos, for example.

Greg.

Re: Yamaha "GH" the same across models? [Re: sullivang] #1473395
07/13/10 09:26 AM
07/13/10 09:26 AM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 722
Cambridgeshire, UK
BazC Offline
500 Post Club Member
BazC  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 722
Cambridgeshire, UK
Originally Posted by Dave Horne
I trust I didn't come across as being too grumpy. smile


Not too grumpy but maybe a little more cynical than necessary! wink Marketing is part of business, it can't be avoided. If you're running a DP manufacturing company and you've spent 5 years doing research and development to try and produce a better instrument than your competitors then you release it with the information that you've made it sound a bit better than your previous model how well do you think it will sell? Then your competitor comes out with a new DP that has Superdynamic touch response and acoustic ambiance simulation with added emotional sequencing who's going to get all the attention?

Just because the marketing guys have been let loose and the copywriters have bought a new thesaurus doesn't mean the products haven't been improved, you just recognise the marketing hype for what it is and judge the instruments on their own merits.

SuperNatural may be a daft name but I love the sound the new Rolands are making and Ivory touch keys may have nothing to do with Ivory but if they feel better and aren't so slippery (or sticky) then that's a good thing right?


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Re: Yamaha "GH" the same across models? [Re: Dave Horne] #1473560
07/13/10 02:25 PM
07/13/10 02:25 PM
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 166
Alberta, Canada
Glen R. Offline OP
Full Member
Glen R.  Offline OP
Full Member

Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 166
Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted by Dave Horne
This is also not an answer but just some of my thoughts on this.

To be perfectly honest when I test drive any stage piano I don't read the advertising hype regarding the keyboard action; I just play the keyboard and either I like it or I don't.

Yes, that makes sense, especially for people with a lot of piano experience. I'm interested in spec sheets for a couple of reasons. The first is that I'm just a beginning player, so I try to use specs to understand price differences, and to get a feel for broad categories of instruments. The second is that with so many digital pianos out there, looking at specs can help narrow down the search, and weed-out models recommended by overzealous sales people. But again, this is mostly driven by my limited experience.
Originally Posted by Dave Horne

And the comment regarding no tweaks to the 'GH' since 2001 ... ?

My take on GH ... Graded Hammer is this - all the keys are the same except those that are even lighter in weight. I personally don't look at graded hammers as a benefit since 99 times out of 100 the keyboard actions are too light to begin with, having some keys even lighter (that's what GH is, right?) is just advertising hype as far as I'm concerned.

I had initially thought the same thing, that Graded Hammer was only referring to the graded weights. However comments on here and the Yamaha site lead me to think that, with Yamaha at least, "Graded Hammer" is referring to a specific action.

For instance, it seems common to hear on PW phrases like "get a YDP-161 rather than YDP-141, since the 161 has GH, which is superior to the GHS".

The following quote from Yamaha (http://music.yamaha.com/products/highlights/keyboardsAST/8.html) also suggests that Graded Hammer is referring to a complete action, rather than just the graded nature of it:
Originally Posted by yamaha

In order to create the best digital piano action, Yamaha engineers took all three [see source page] into consideration. The result is Yamaha's patented Graded Hammer Action for the Clavinova.

Originally Posted by Dave Horne

Let's face it, we can't be keyboard purists if we're playing digital keyboards.

True!
Originally Posted by Dave Horne

Pianos are a lot like breakfast cereals. How many different ways can you market corn flakes. They have to improve the packaging, change the color of the packaging, add more salt, remove excess salt, add more sugar, remove excess sugar and so on. I'm pretty certain it's the same with keyboards.

Yes, I've thought the same thing many times when looking at Yamaha's descriptions of older models. For example, "The P-80 boasts some of the most expressive and realistic piano voices ever heard on a digital keyboard." (I'm not familiar with the P-80, but I'm guessing that since it was introduced in 1999, it's sound is quite dated.)
Originally Posted by Dave Horne

I trust I didn't come across as being too grumpy. smile

Not at all smile


Be the person your dog thinks you are.
1926 Heintzman Upright, Kawai ES7
[Linked Image]
Re: Yamaha "GH" the same across models? [Re: Glen R.] #1473632
07/13/10 05:00 PM
07/13/10 05:00 PM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,449
Vught, The Netherlands
Dave Horne Offline
6000 Post Club Member
Dave Horne  Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,449
Vught, The Netherlands
I've learned about advertising hype the hard way and it was the P80 you mentioned. I sold my CP300 earlier this year and a for a short time I was without any digital keyboard. As luck would have it, a job came in and I had to rent a keyboard from the bass player who also worked the job and always has extra equipment that he rents out.

I asked the bass player what model it was and looked up the keyboard online. It seemed like a great keyboard.

Bear in mind that I've used a P250 and CP300 for the last ten years or so and that was what I was accustomed to. Well the keyboard was less than desirable. The top end of the piano sound was OK as was the bottom end. It seems the very important area an octave in either direction of middle C was just lacking something.

I'm sure it sounded less bad to the party than it did to me, but when you're playing you have an expectation of the sound and when that isn't there it's always an unsatisfied feeling.

What's interesting is this, when someone else plays the same piano and you're listening, it always sounds better. There's a connection between the keyboard and the player and the player's expectation of the sound and that's hard to quantify.


website | mp3 files | Yamaha AvantGrand N3 | Roland RD 2000 | Sennheiser HD 598 headphones

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