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Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1756902
09/21/11 08:22 PM
09/21/11 08:22 PM
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Hamamatsu, Japan
Kawai James Offline
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Originally Posted by voxpops
...it seems like as soon as you hit any other pre-programmed switch (e.g. to try to control the "Leslie") you exit the drawbar mode


Hmmm... did you try using a footswitch to control the Leslie?

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
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Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: Kawai James] #1756903
09/21/11 08:24 PM
09/21/11 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Kawai James
Originally Posted by voxpops
...it seems like as soon as you hit any other pre-programmed switch (e.g. to try to control the "Leslie") you exit the drawbar mode


Hmmm... did you try using a footswitch to control the Leslie?

James
x

No, not yet. You think that would work in the zone-fader drawbar mode?


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: Kawai James] #1756906
09/21/11 08:34 PM
09/21/11 08:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Kawai James
Originally Posted by voxpops
...it seems like as soon as you hit any other pre-programmed switch (e.g. to try to control the "Leslie") you exit the drawbar mode


Hmmm... did you try using a footswitch to control the Leslie?

James
x

Good call, James! I programmed the mod-wheel, and that functioned fine in drawbar mode. Now to try to find if percussion/CV can be similarly controlled...


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1756909
09/21/11 08:43 PM
09/21/11 08:43 PM
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Thinking about it, it would be really helpful to have one switch that could be preset to switch directly into drawbar mode (with zone-fader control). This could be one of the tonewheel sound buttons or the SW button, for example. Then, in live mode, you just hit the one button and you have tonewheel organs with fader control. That's what's needed for this function to have value in a live setting.


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1756911
09/21/11 08:51 PM
09/21/11 08:51 PM
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Hamamatsu, Japan
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Yes, I agree, a means to 'jump' to the tonewheel registration page would be useful.

Regarding tonewheel percussion and chorus/vibrato, I don't believe these can be controlled in real time, unfortunately. Please remember that the MP6 isn't marketed as a clonewheel.

Cheers,
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: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1756921
09/21/11 09:10 PM
09/21/11 09:10 PM
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Originally Posted by voxpops
Yes, but since the price increase from $1,099 to $1,499, the undead now wear Prada...

Ha ha!

voxpops, I hope you didn't take my comment too much to heart, in retrospect it seems kind of harsh, and I'm certainly not trying to turn you or anyone else off to the MP6.

But it seems to me there are two ways to keep costs down in electronic products:

1. Use older, slower, simpler components on rather large area PCBs that have few layers.

2. Use the very latest, highly integrated, die shrunk, fast, complex components on a small, multi-layer PCB.

For option 1, design and manufacturing techniques are stone age so very well known, easy to do, and inexpensive. Option 2 is more cutting edge, so D&M are a bit murkier (for older engineers) and expensive, but certainly doable. Regardless, NRE is amortized over lots products.

One problem with option 1 is that if it uses computing components (DRAM, Flash, etc.) these small, slow, older components are at high risk for getting phased out by the manufacturer - it can be quite a challenge keeping a processing board as-is through several years of manufacturing without running into an expensive one-time-buyout of some critical old part, or re-spinning it due to not taking a buyout offer.

A second problem is you get a lot less bang-for-the-buck with those older parts, and they are more power hungry.

A third problem is you have a product that is easily perceived by the user as outdated and slow.

I keep waiting for the DP industry to embrace option 2. It seems it would take a refresh of the hardware and software engineering teams though, something I fully expected to have happened by now - even if they were fighting against it - through simple attrition. One can get a lot (and I mean A LOT) more processing for the same or less cost and a lot less power. And we could all have truly awesome sounding DPs.

But here we sit.

Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: dewster] #1756931
09/21/11 09:30 PM
09/21/11 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by dewster
Originally Posted by voxpops
Yes, but since the price increase from $1,099 to $1,499, the undead now wear Prada...

Ha ha!

voxpops, I hope you didn't take my comment too much to heart, in retrospect it seems kind of harsh, and I'm certainly not trying to turn you or anyone else off to the MP6.


Not in the least, dewster. I'm a harsh critic myself! I'm not too worried about the age of the technology if it produces the sound quality I'm after, but the MP6 kind of straddles the past and the present, and has a few flaws as a result. The use of the old chassis (and presumably many components) keeps costs down, as you say, but the new samples would benefit from (again, presumably) larger memory and better processing.


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1756935
09/21/11 09:38 PM
09/21/11 09:38 PM
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Hamamatsu, Japan
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Originally Posted by voxpops
Yes, but since the price increase from $1,099 to $1,499


I assume you are comparing the price of an MP5 with that of the MP6, yes?

Okay, please consider the following:

- New RH action with let-off and Ivory Touch
- New PHA acoustic piano and electric piano sounds
- New tonewheel organ simulator
- New amp simulator
- Improved EFX
- USB audio (MP3/WAV/SMF record and playback)
- USB load/save sound/setup data
- Song recorder
- Metronome + 100 drum rhythms (new stereo drum samples)
- Assignable MMC buttons

- Appreciation in value of Japanese yen relative to other currencies.

Kind regards,
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: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: Kawai James] #1756950
09/21/11 10:16 PM
09/21/11 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Kawai James
Originally Posted by voxpops
Yes, but since the price increase from $1,099 to $1,499


I assume you are comparing the price of an MP5 with that of the MP6, yes?
x

It was a joke, James.


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1757343
09/22/11 12:46 PM
09/22/11 12:46 PM
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One question for James:
Has the MP6 been voiced differently from the equivalent console models?

I'm wondering if the programmers felt the need to give it more of what they perceive as a "rock" voicing. It certainly seems much improved, to my ears, using a mellower voicing.

One observation for Kawai and new MP6 owners:
Although the software allows you to store changes to the parameters within each sound, it will automatically restore the factory default Concert Grand settings at power-on (overriding any changes you previously made to the Concert Grand patch and stored as "Sound") unless you use the power-on memory to remember your Concert Grand changes. In other words, switching the MP6 on is equivalent to activating the "Piano Only" function, which returns you to Concert Grand in its factory state. This does not happen with, say, the Rhodes sound, where changes will be remembered across power-ups once stored in the "Sound". It is an anomaly that, hopefully, could be addressed in the next firmware update.


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1757572
09/22/11 06:02 PM
09/22/11 06:02 PM
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Hamamatsu, Japan
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voxpops, I don't believe the voicing has been setup to sound more 'aggressive' than Kawai's console DPs.

Kind regards,
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: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1757593
09/22/11 06:16 PM
09/22/11 06:16 PM
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Ashland, OH
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This is my first time here. I started playing in my early fifties on a Lowrey Holiday organ. From there, went to a Casio Workstation, Casio PX-575, Casio PX-330 and now Kawai MP6, which brings me here. I've had the MP6 less than a week but I find some of the AP's to be alittle on the bright side. So, I found going to the EQ and turning down the Mid Freq and then turning up the Mid, I got the Concert Grand to sound better to me. Then under Menu to Voicing I changed to Mellow 1. This also helped. I still found when a key was struck hard that bright sound. So now I went to Systems and changed Touch to Heavy. Now I think I can live with it. Because I'm just an amateur, I would like your opinions ( Voxpops and anyone who has a MP6) what more I could try. Saying all of that, I am very pleased MP6, it is a step up from the Casio's. Thanks Guys I read you every day Dave

Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1757639
09/22/11 07:46 PM
09/22/11 07:46 PM
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Hamamatsu, Japan
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voxpops,

As you note, the MP6 allows the 'Power On' sound to be defined by the user - this is similar to the 'User Memory' function on other Kawai (console) DPs.

Originally Posted by voxpops
In other words, switching the MP6 on is equivalent to activating the "Piano Only" function, which returns you to Concert Grand in its factory state.


Yes, if the user does not define their own 'Power On' memory, the factory defaults will always be used.

Originally Posted by voxpops
This does not happen with, say, the Rhodes sound, where changes will be remembered across power-ups once stored in the "Sound".


I believe all sounds share this behaviour. For example, if you select the desired acoustic piano patch, the previously stored 'Sound' settings should be recalled in the same way.

If you wish to have your preferred acoustic piano settings available at start-up, you should store them to the 'Power On' memory.

Originally Posted by voxpops
It is an anomaly...


Unless I am misinterpreting your explanation above, I don't believe it is.

To clarify:

- Changes made to 'Classic EP' and stored to the Sound will be recalled whenever that sound is re-selected.
- Changes made to 'Mellow Grand' and stored to the Sound will be recalled whenever that sound is re-selected.
- The MP6 will automatically recall the 'Power On' memory when the instrument is turned on.
- If the user does not define their own 'Power On' memory, the default (i.e. not the user adjusted) 'Concert Grand' sound will be selected automatically.

I hope this helps.

Kind regards,
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: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: Kawai James] #1759897
09/26/11 07:00 PM
09/26/11 07:00 PM
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For those interested in the guts of the MP6, here's a few pictures that I took just after I'd replaced the broken keys (which can be seen in the lower left corner of the first pic). You can see the metal plate I used to reinforce the split end-cheek in photo-4.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1759932
09/26/11 08:08 PM
09/26/11 08:08 PM
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Just tried the MP6's User Touch Curve. It works very well, and helps me gain much better control over the sound than the standard or "heavy" setting.

This board now plays very nicely indeed. I just wish...

Actually, thinking about it, that action (see side view above) looks to me like it's worth anything from $500 to $1,000 (retail). Replacement keys cost over $15 each, and they are just a simple part of each hammer unit. So I shouldn't be too churlish about the sound engine!

Last edited by voxpops; 09/26/11 08:38 PM.

"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: Kawai James] #1759972
09/26/11 09:24 PM
09/26/11 09:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Kawai James
voxpops,

As you note, the MP6 allows the 'Power On' sound to be defined by the user - this is similar to the 'User Memory' function on other Kawai (console) DPs.

Originally Posted by voxpops
In other words, switching the MP6 on is equivalent to activating the "Piano Only" function, which returns you to Concert Grand in its factory state.


Yes, if the user does not define their own 'Power On' memory, the factory defaults will always be used.

Originally Posted by voxpops
This does not happen with, say, the Rhodes sound, where changes will be remembered across power-ups once stored in the "Sound".


I believe all sounds share this behaviour. For example, if you select the desired acoustic piano patch, the previously stored 'Sound' settings should be recalled in the same way.

If you wish to have your preferred acoustic piano settings available at start-up, you should store them to the 'Power On' memory.

Originally Posted by voxpops
It is an anomaly...


Unless I am misinterpreting your explanation above, I don't believe it is.

To clarify:

- Changes made to 'Classic EP' and stored to the Sound will be recalled whenever that sound is re-selected.
- Changes made to 'Mellow Grand' and stored to the Sound will be recalled whenever that sound is re-selected.
- The MP6 will automatically recall the 'Power On' memory when the instrument is turned on.
- If the user does not define their own 'Power On' memory, the default (i.e. not the user adjusted) 'Concert Grand' sound will be selected automatically.

I hope this helps.

Kind regards,
James
x


Thanks for that very clear explanation. I was just expecting the sound I had stored as Concert Grand to be the default sound on start-up, but I realize now that unless it's also stored in "power on" memory, it will not be selected at start-up. At first I thought it had written over my stored sounds, but one just needs to reselect Concert Grand after start-up (unless using "power-on" memory) for the user-settings to be restored.

No, it's obviously not an anomaly that needs correcting, it's just different from some other DPs in that respect.


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1759984
09/26/11 09:46 PM
09/26/11 09:46 PM
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Northern NJ
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Thanks for the pix voxpops! Those keys look eerily like the ones in our RD-700NX (will post pix soon). Same hammer actuated angled rubber switches, same type of travel limits at the key tips, same plastic and metal hammers, same foil covered chipboard base. The NX doesn't have that strange flip up near the key pivot point though. I guess these guys can't just blatantly copy each other without infringing on a patent or ten, but the degree of copying is pretty amazing nonetheless.

Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1759999
09/26/11 10:12 PM
09/26/11 10:12 PM
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You're welcome, Dewster. Sounds like you took the plunge and opened up the NX!?


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: voxpops] #1760220
09/27/11 06:52 AM
09/27/11 06:52 AM
Joined: May 2011
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Originally Posted by voxpops
Originally Posted by Kawai James
voxpops,

As you note, the MP6 allows the 'Power On' sound to be defined by the user - this is similar to the 'User Memory' function on other Kawai (console) DPs.

Originally Posted by voxpops
In other words, switching the MP6 on is equivalent to activating the "Piano Only" function, which returns you to Concert Grand in its factory state.


Yes, if the user does not define their own 'Power On' memory, the factory defaults will always be used.

Originally Posted by voxpops
This does not happen with, say, the Rhodes sound, where changes will be remembered across power-ups once stored in the "Sound".


I believe all sounds share this behaviour. For example, if you select the desired acoustic piano patch, the previously stored 'Sound' settings should be recalled in the same way.

If you wish to have your preferred acoustic piano settings available at start-up, you should store them to the 'Power On' memory.

Originally Posted by voxpops
It is an anomaly...


Unless I am misinterpreting your explanation above, I don't believe it is.

To clarify:

- Changes made to 'Classic EP' and stored to the Sound will be recalled whenever that sound is re-selected.
- Changes made to 'Mellow Grand' and stored to the Sound will be recalled whenever that sound is re-selected.
- The MP6 will automatically recall the 'Power On' memory when the instrument is turned on.
- If the user does not define their own 'Power On' memory, the default (i.e. not the user adjusted) 'Concert Grand' sound will be selected automatically.

I hope this helps.

Kind regards,
James
x


Thanks for that very clear explanation. I was just expecting the sound I had stored as Concert Grand to be the default sound on start-up, but I realize now that unless it's also stored in "power on" memory, it will not be selected at start-up. At first I thought it had written over my stored sounds, but one just needs to reselect Concert Grand after start-up (unless using "power-on" memory) for the user-settings to be restored.

No, it's obviously not an anomaly that needs correcting, it's just different from some other DPs in that respect.


After reading this, I don't quite understand, how the MP6 deals with internal sounds, stored sounds and setups.

So, if you store a user setting to the Concert Grand sound, you can recall it by simply pressing the correct buttons, but on power-up the original concert Grand is selected, whereafter you can select your own Concert Grand by pressing the appropiate button(s) ?

I suppose, that for all other sounds you cannot select between the original stored sound and your own tweakings of the same ?

So if you have adjusted a sound to your likings, and later you would like to hear the default setting again, you will have to reset that sound, which means, that the adjustments made earlier are lost, if they are stored in an internal sound location ?

when I read the user manual I get the impression, that there are 256 Sound Setup's programmed fram the factory, but I don't see a list of those setup's ?

Best regards.

Re: Kawai MP6 first impressions [Re: north] #1760267
09/27/11 08:44 AM
09/27/11 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by north
Originally Posted by voxpops
Originally Posted by Kawai James
voxpops,

As you note, the MP6 allows the 'Power On' sound to be defined by the user - this is similar to the 'User Memory' function on other Kawai (console) DPs.

Originally Posted by voxpops
In other words, switching the MP6 on is equivalent to activating the "Piano Only" function, which returns you to Concert Grand in its factory state.


Yes, if the user does not define their own 'Power On' memory, the factory defaults will always be used.

Originally Posted by voxpops
This does not happen with, say, the Rhodes sound, where changes will be remembered across power-ups once stored in the "Sound".


I believe all sounds share this behaviour. For example, if you select the desired acoustic piano patch, the previously stored 'Sound' settings should be recalled in the same way.

If you wish to have your preferred acoustic piano settings available at start-up, you should store them to the 'Power On' memory.

Originally Posted by voxpops
It is an anomaly...


Unless I am misinterpreting your explanation above, I don't believe it is.

To clarify:

- Changes made to 'Classic EP' and stored to the Sound will be recalled whenever that sound is re-selected.
- Changes made to 'Mellow Grand' and stored to the Sound will be recalled whenever that sound is re-selected.
- The MP6 will automatically recall the 'Power On' memory when the instrument is turned on.
- If the user does not define their own 'Power On' memory, the default (i.e. not the user adjusted) 'Concert Grand' sound will be selected automatically.

I hope this helps.

Kind regards,
James
x


Thanks for that very clear explanation. I was just expecting the sound I had stored as Concert Grand to be the default sound on start-up, but I realize now that unless it's also stored in "power on" memory, it will not be selected at start-up. At first I thought it had written over my stored sounds, but one just needs to reselect Concert Grand after start-up (unless using "power-on" memory) for the user-settings to be restored.

No, it's obviously not an anomaly that needs correcting, it's just different from some other DPs in that respect.


After reading this, I don't quite understand, how the MP6 deals with internal sounds, stored sounds and setups.

So, if you store a user setting to the Concert Grand sound, you can recall it by simply pressing the correct buttons, but on power-up the original concert Grand is selected, whereafter you can select your own Concert Grand by pressing the appropiate button(s) ?

I suppose, that for all other sounds you cannot select between the original stored sound and your own tweakings of the same ?

So if you have adjusted a sound to your likings, and later you would like to hear the default setting again, you will have to reset that sound, which means, that the adjustments made earlier are lost, if they are stored in an internal sound location ?

when I read the user manual I get the impression, that there are 256 Sound Setup's programmed fram the factory, but I don't see a list of those setup's ?

Best regards.

I think it's like this, north: the sounds remain as factory default sounds unless you overwrite them with your own settings. If you overwrite them, the original sounds are no longer available to you unless you restore them by resetting to the factory default. However, there is one exception: the factory default Concert Grand sound remains available at all times by pressing the two buttons marked "Piano Only". Your own adjustments to this sound are also stored. When you start the piano, the factory default Concert Grand sound is selected (unless you use "Power On" memory to override the default). Once the piano is on and the factory default Concert Grand sound is in use, if you select Concert Grand again (NOT "Piano Only") using the bank/sound buttons, your own settings will be recalled.

Should you wish to keep both your own settings along with the default settings for other sounds, you have to store your variations as setups.

AFAIK, there are 256 factory sounds stored in the banks. Setups include both multiple sounds drawn from these banks, and MIDI configurations, with (usually) sounds in the lower numbered spaces and MIDI stuff in the higher numbers. I don't think there's a list of these as they are designed to be overwritten with the user's own creations.


"you don't need to have been a rabbit in order to become a veterinarian"

mabraman, 2015
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