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#1474117 07/14/10 11:12 AM
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We are very close and narrowed our choice to CA63 and CA93. They are identical except build in speakers and soundboard speaker. This concept sounds cool but we were not able to compare them side by side because our dealer didn’t have CA63 in stock.
They installed smaller speakers to CA93, so SA63 may sound very close. Did someone test both of them? Does this soundboard speaker worth extra $500?
Thank you

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Another two differences besides the souundboard is that the keyboard on the CA93 has a simulation of escapement to more accurately mimic the working of a grand piano and there are more included voices on the CA93.

If you are not interested in the extra voices, are not used to a grand piano or in need of the escapement feature and/or will often play with headphones, then the CA63 would be a better value choice than the CA93. You can always add a pair of near field monitors later for around $200 if you want more oomph out of the CA63.

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As a Kawai DP owner, for me personally the CA93 even has a slightly better value for money than the CA63, because of:

* Construction: the CA93 is factory-assembled, checked and delivered (instead of DIY).

* Design differences: the CA93 Soundboard gives the look and feel of an Acoustic upright and the CA93 has a better, more ergonomic pedal board placement.

* Samples: the CA93 has more sounds on board which can make sound design more creative (not important for everyone).

* Speaker-system: the CA93 incorporates a unique audiophile grade hi-fi system and it's not just the sound board giving more pressure and spatiality, but also the six speakers and a kind of large bass port openings directed towards the front of the piano, hidden below the keyboard (if some speakers are smaller then it's because they don't have to stretch into the bass range, as the soundboard and bass port openings take care of that, which is actually a big advantage). The CA93 soundboard is not something you can easily replicate with a CA63 and (low-end) external monitor speakers, which probably also don't look very nice at home.

* Action: the let-off mechanism (if desired) is noticeable and helpful for pianissimo parts, and it is only there if you want to, by adjusting your playing technique accordingly.

* I keep hearing everywhere that the CA63 sounds best with high-end headphones. My experience with the CA93 however, is that it sounds much more authentic over the speaker system than with high-end headphones (over headphones the CA93 and CA63 sound identical).

Whether you want to spend some extra money is up to you, but i.m.h.o. it's a bargain whichever one you choose (more features and a better design for a lower price than the previous generation).


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Very good points from both theJourney and TADutchman there.

Kind regards,
James
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I'd like to add, I think the CA63 sounds good with or without headphones. I think I prefer it without headphones. I like the way the keys vibrate with the sound and that it sounds good enough to me. - I really disliked the sound of Yamahas when I was buying dps.

Thanks to living in a flat and practising quite late at night I don't get the chance to play it without headphones as often as I would like. I chose the CA63 over the CA93 because I couldn't tell the difference at low volumes or with headphones.

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Originally Posted by AndyT
I chose the CA63 over the CA93 because I couldn't tell the difference at low volumes or with headphones.

That makes sense to me: you don't need high-end for low volumes!

There are more differences though: I guess everyone can interpret/test the value of those for themselves, together with the amount of live playing at moderate practicing volumes where the CA93 difference becomes clearly audible (and performances at acoustic grand level that are simply stunning).

Something else
Until now, most sales guys don't even seem to know/care about all the details shared in this thread. This could result in making a clear purchase decision a little more difficult. Rephrased in other words: the actual Kawai top of the line products are much better than their current marketing material implies. This can be quite refreshing and very satisfying for customers after purchase, getting more than you thought you paid for, especially compared to some other DP manufacturers.


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Thank you for all your inputs. Finally we bought CA93 which was delivered today. It was in stock and we will use it mainly without headphones. I wanted to keep it simple, without any external speakers or computers, so I wanted the best sound.
Thanks to this forum, I was able to choose a great product without any knowledge in piano and music in general.
I agree with TADutchman that marketing department in Kawai is way behind engeneering one. I was not able to find any professional reviews or awards not only on Kawai site but even on Internet. I'd advice Kawai to list them on product pages.
Piano sounds very nice (at least to me) but I think soundboard has one disadvantage -- whole cabinel constraction should be very solid because it sends move vibrations. Right now I hear minor mechanical buzzing playing one key.
I also found an issue playing Old man organ but I want to update firmware and test it again before reporting here (I have 1.03 now).

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Originally Posted by SnowBarS
I think soundboard has one disadvantage -- whole cabinel constraction should be very solid because it sends move vibrations. Right now I hear minor mechanical buzzing playing one key.
I think it's inevitable that a vibrating soundboard will cause some minor mechanical buzzing somewhere, no matter how solid the cabinet construction is. That's just the fact of life that resonant frequencies to objects around the vibration will happen. Sometimes this happens to some part of the piano, other times it happens to external objects nearby. Acoustic pianos suffer the same problem, even more so given that the soundboard is their only sound generating device. So if you only have 1 minor buzzing so far with 1 key, consider yourself lucky. I think it's worth the minor nuissance to get that soundboard effect overall.

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Congratulations on your purchase, SnowBarS!

You just reminded me of two small table lamps I have bought for my wife and placed on the CA93 a few weeks ago, causing strange vibrations. The CA93 cabinet itself actually had nothing to do with it, except for generating resonance in the thin solid metal lamp poles, but it took me quite some time to figure that out and come up with a simple solution: fixing some tape to the inside of the lamp cover connected to the poles. blush


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Indeed Congratulations on your purchase SnowBarS! May I ask which finish you selected?

Please do feel free to post a photograph or two of your new instrument.

TADutchman, I would like to see a picture of you CA93 too (complete with lamps on either side)!

Kind regards,
James
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Originally Posted by Kawai James
TADutchman, I would like to see a picture of your CA93 too (complete with lamps on either side)!


Allright James, here it is: smile

[Linked Image]


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That's really lovely - I almost want to sit down and have a quick tinkle myself! wink

The lamps work very nicely on top of the cabinet too.

One query though, may I ask what is attached to the right side of the instrument, beside the power lamp?

[Linked Image]

Cheers,
James
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Originally Posted by Kawai James
I almost want to sit down and have a quick tinkle myself!

Oh my goodness, isn't this a family forum? wink

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Hurrah for Carl Humphries' The Piano Handbook!

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Good spot TheJourney, me and my wife both play the piano, but she has a background of organ playing so then this book also comes in handy. At the same time, I'm a little disappointed that you didn't mention the dealers' logo, just kidding. grin

@Kawai James: given that I received excellent support from my Kawai dealer, I guess he deserved it to keep his name in place (and we like the small personal touch), even though he indicated after delivery that he wouldn't mind if we would prefer to remove his logo.
http://www.vanoldenielpiano.nl/home

By the way, you're welcome to come and play, whenever you're in the neighbourhood. cool


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It looks very nice, congratulations. I'm also curious about the thingy next to the power light. Where did you get the bench/stool?

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Originally Posted by theJourney
Hurrah for Carl Humphries' The Piano Handbook!

Well yes, or maybe, can you expand?

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There is an excellent book of the above name which gives a wonderful introductory survey of the piano and piano music which is on TADutchman's piano and in my library. A beautifully designed and executed book for anyone of any experience level interested in the piano, but a particularly appropriate gift for adults who are exploring or returning to the piano.

http://www.amazon.com/Piano-Handbook-Complete-Guide-Mastering/dp/0879307277

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Originally Posted by spanishbuddha
It looks very nice, congratulations. I'm also curious about the thingy next to the power light. Where did you get the bench/stool?

Thanks, spanishbuddha. Here's another somewhat more detailed picture showing the logo:
[Linked Image]

The quality adjustable bench was a special request of mine and included in the negotiated package deal, together with the Sennheiser HD595. During installation, there appeared to be a choice of two different seat materials (exchangeable). I let my wife decide about this detail, which sometimes can be a wise decision. wink


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dewster,

http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/tinkle_the_ivories

TADutchman, ah I see. Van Oldeniel Piano clearly have a very satisfied customer. wink

Thank you for the offer, by the way. I have never visited Holland, but gather it's a beautiful country - I shall certainly have to bear both yourself and theJourney in mind should I ever receive a business trip to Europe. wink

Cheers,
James
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