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Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice #1602974 01/22/11 03:21 PM
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aberfeldy Offline OP
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I have spent many months considering which digital to purchase as a serious pianist (in a condo). It's down to the yamaha n2 or Roland rg 3f. Any last words of advice from those of you who have played these pianos is very welcome. Also, looks like I will likely buy long distance and have them shipped which means I would have to set it up. Is this difficult?
Thanks!

Last edited by aberfeldy; 01/22/11 03:21 PM.
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Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1602985 01/22/11 03:38 PM
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The Yamaha N1 is coming out in April. It will cost less than the N2 (list for $10K compared to the N2's list for $15K, but also have less features) mainly in the sound department. But the action is the same as the N2, except there's no TRS and the keys are acrylic resin instead of Ivorite. And the cabinet is not as nice.

Even if you still prefer the N2, I wonder if the introduction of the N1 in April will cause the N2 street price to come down a little bit more.

Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1602988 01/22/11 03:40 PM
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Yamaha - Better key action, probably better sound system, tactile feedback, can (must?) be placed against a wall (for visual reasons, not functional ones).

Roland - Better tone generation (if you like their sound), greater functionality, better looking, better piece of furniture (last points arguable).

They're both good. Both expensive though.

Set up should be very straightforward...but they will be too heavy for one person to handle.

Good luck.

Steve


C. Bechstein Model B | Roland RD-1000 | Kawai VPC1
Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1602992 01/22/11 03:44 PM
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Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1603858 01/23/11 03:48 PM
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I recently had the chance to A-B the two side by side, and I concur with the other posters -- both are great instruments, but there are differences.

Action

Roland's PHA-III action is excellent -- for a DP. The Avant Grand's action, on the other hand, is real and offers more in terms of authenticity. The AG has a pleasing "sponginess" about it, a resistance that seems to vary during the course of the key's travel. In comparison, the PHA-III, like most DPs, has more of an on-off response with a marked "clonk" as the key hits the bed.

Tonality

I've always liked the way Yamaha voice their high-end DPs. There's a lot of mid-frequency content in the tone, which may sometimes sound a bit nasal, but mostly in a warm and positive way. Other manufacturers tend to EQ their samples with that dreaded HiFi "smiley" curve, depleting most mids, and shifting the body of the tone too far down in the frequency spectrum. This gives a dark sound, which can be nice, but perhaps compromises versatility.

In the upper end of the frequency spectrum, the AG is clear and smooth, with very little of the "typewriter" effect when playing ff or fff. The Roland is more aggressive, which is probably due to the amount of inharmonicity introduced at higher velocity levels.

Sound System

Both the N2 and RG-3F have capable sound systems, could not detect any major differences. The N2 had somewhat better clarity, but that was probably due to the piano sound itself. It would be interesting to run some CD-sourced music through both of them for comparison.

Appearance

Somehow the Yamaha feels more classy, with its distinctive but minimalistic modern design. The Roland is stylish but conservative, and I feel the control panel with LCD display conflicts with the classic style, too easily reminding you of the fact that you're operating a piece of technology.

Well, I think it's fairly clear which one I would choose. All I can say is, play the instruments as much as you can before deciding. Choose the one which feels better to you, and don't get too hung up on technicalities.

The best of luck!

-joachim

Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: jve] #1604192 01/23/11 11:17 PM
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aberfeldy Offline OP
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THanks for the advice. It is a really difficult decision. I am inclined to go for the N2, but it is 2K more than the RG 3F. I am trying to decide if the grand piano action is worth it.

Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1604213 01/23/11 11:44 PM
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Have you considered the V grand?

Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1604363 01/24/11 05:52 AM
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Yamaha has since come out with the N1 which should be given some consideration as well.

You can save even more money over the N2 and the trade off isn't so great - you still have the same action (though different key tops, a smaller amplification system, and no TRS). For my purposes, practice purposes, the N1 would still be as good as my N3.


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Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: Nikalette] #1604890 01/24/11 09:11 PM
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Yes, looks fantastic, but WAY too pricey. I also tried out the Roland V, but the monitors, etc. were not what I'm looking for.

Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1616559 02/10/11 12:05 AM
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Okay. So, I couldn't wait for the Yamaha N1 and have taken the plunge on the RG-3F. I am anxiously awaiting delivery.

Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1616623 02/10/11 02:55 AM
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Guys,

sorry to be pedantic, but N1 and N2 do not share the same action.

I've tried them extensively at NAMM (along with N3) and for sure the 2 actions feel different.

N1 action is heavier than N2 and a bit less responsive. I'd say that N1 action is like the action of a good upright with heavy action, while N2 is like the action of a grand.

Of course N1 action is authentic acoustic action and way better than PHA-III if you're a serious pianist who care for building and maintaining a good technique and cannot use an acoustic piano.

N2(N3) action is very, very good. Responsive and with the weight you would expect from a grand.

Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: Suryaman] #1616637 02/10/11 03:23 AM
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According to Yamahas specs, the N1 and N2 share the same action.
Only specified difference is the key-touch surface.

It seems to me that this N1 that you tested had more friction.
If the action is the same, the weigth cant be different, but friction and adjustment can.


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Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1616645 02/10/11 04:02 AM
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Also the specs say that N2/N3 have TRS while N1 not. So probably the difference in action is due to this system. Indeed, N2 and N3 I played felt under the fingers exactly the same.

Anyway I don't really care that much about specs, I care more what my fingers say, and they say that the action experience was obviously different between N1 and N2/N3.

Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1616650 02/10/11 04:37 AM
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Now, a piano might be like a dream, but commonly dreams are not sold and are not payed and are not durable.

Pianos are much connected to emotions and feel but they are payed with hard money and not with good wishes and dreams ;-)

So the specs and what is covered by specs and what is not covered should be made clear, otherwise no forum and no specs at all would be needed ;-)



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Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: aberfeldy] #1616671 02/10/11 06:28 AM
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To the original poster....congratulations on your choice....let us know what you think when it arrives.

Cheers,

Steve


C. Bechstein Model B | Roland RD-1000 | Kawai VPC1
Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: hpeterh] #1616847 02/10/11 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by hpeterh
Now, a piano might be like a dream, but commonly dreams are not sold and are not payed and are not durable.

Pianos are much connected to emotions and feel but they are payed with hard money and not with good wishes and dreams ;-)

So the specs and what is covered by specs and what is not covered should be made clear, otherwise no forum and no specs at all would be needed ;-)




Interesting point!

Forums are also important because we can share our opinions and thanks to each sensitivity and ability we can discover when a brand says not entirely the truth about technical specs...It has happened a lot of times!

Another example is that Roland specs say that V-Piano and Rd700NX share the same action...ok...but having tried them side by side there are differences...

Re: Yamaha N2 or Roland RG 3F advice [Re: Suryaman] #1616899 02/10/11 02:04 PM
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Congrats aberfeldy on the RG-3F. A fantastic instrument that I'm sure you'll enjoy for a long time!
Originally Posted by Suryaman

Another example is that Roland specs say that V-Piano and Rd700NX share the same action...ok...but having tried them side by side there are differences...

I can tell you having owned the RD-700GXF and spent considerable time playing the V-Piano at local music stores, as well as the RD-700NX just before I bought the NP88, the RD-700NX feels nearly identical to my old RD-700GXF. I really thought the RD-700NX with the PHA III with it's built in SN sound engine was going to be the big leap forward to the RD-700GXF with PHA II and the older processor running the SN sound card...I was wrong which is why my RD-700NX went back to Sweetwater. The RD-700NX felt and sounded, for intents and purposes, the same as the RD-700GXF. That's not a knock at all, however. I bet the PHA III in the RG-3F probably feels different to both the V-Piano and RD-700NX, and probably feels quite good being in a mini-grand cabinet.

Last edited by PianoZac; 02/10/11 02:05 PM.

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