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#701143 - 02/21/07 07:52 AM Stretch tuning in a digital piano  
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 20
Anotherak Offline
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Anotherak  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 20
Finland
In stage pianos, Kawais and Rolands have it but Yamahas (aside from CP300, IIRC) and Privias, judging by blurbs/manuals, don't.

Is stretch tuning needed in a simulated piano at all? If it's not, why do some have it? If it is, why do people still use and like their CP33's and PX110's? Is this a feature I need to keep an eye on in choosing an instrument or is it a non-issue?

Thanks in advance for any input.

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#701144 - 02/21/07 09:52 AM Re: Stretch tuning in a digital piano  
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bachmaniac Offline
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bachmaniac  Offline
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Posts: 410
Montreal, CAN
Hi Anotherak,

I don't see why DPs would benefit less from stretch tuning than acoustics. It's a subjective adjustment meant to compensate for the human ear's relative inefficiency at lower/higher frequencies of the 88-note keyboard. It "cheats" somewhat, progressively, making the high treble slightly sharp and the low bass slightly flat as compared to mathematical perfection. Without it, a piano wouldn't sound as good, as warm to the ear.

I wasn't aware that some DPs on the market do not offer it by default. Maybe you've just explained why there are DPs that sound more appealing than others to certain ears.

Thanks for sharing this!
Claude


K. Kawai KG-2D grand, Kawai MP8 digital, Kawai CA7
#701145 - 02/21/07 10:36 AM Re: Stretch tuning in a digital piano  
Joined: Aug 2006
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Eternal Offline
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Eternal  Offline
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Quote
Originally posted by Anotherak:
Is stretch tuning needed in a simulated piano at all? If it's not, why do some have it? If it is, why do people still use and like their CP33's and PX110's?
Having to pay only a fraction of the price has probably a lot to do with it...

#701146 - 02/21/07 07:33 PM Re: Stretch tuning in a digital piano  
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 419
ipgrunt Offline
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ipgrunt  Offline
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Western US
Quote
Originally posted by Anotherak:
In stage pianos, Kawais and Rolands have it but Yamahas (aside from CP300, IIRC) and Privias, judging by blurbs/manuals, don't.

Is stretch tuning needed in a simulated piano at all? If it's not, why do some have it? If it is, why do people still use and like their CP33's and PX110's? Is this a feature I need to keep an eye on in choosing an instrument or is it a non-issue?

Thanks in advance for any input.
Why do people like artichokes -- are they fooling themselves that artichokes taste like anything but the drawn butter in which they dip the leaves?

Don't worry about it!

Stretch tuning a piano compensates for two things: 1) the basic fact that our 12 musical intervals are not laid out using perfect fractions (each note is theoretically 1/12 of an octave, but a perfect fifth, which is theoretically at the frequency halfway between the octaves, is actually 6 notes from the lower octave, and only 5 notes from the upper), and 2) certain physical constraints in pianos that are constructed from woods and metals and that are less than infinite length, that cause inharmonicities due to factors including but not limited to the vibrational impedance in the transfer of energy between bridge and soundboard, energy absorption in the rim, the speed of sound in wood, the mass of copper-wrapped metal wire relative to its length, the number of angels that can dance on the head of a pin, and other intellectual niceties.

(Where is Del Fandrich when you need him!)

These phenomena can be explained using the calculus of Newtonian physics, however, it is best understood by what the other guy said: the higher octaves in a piano are tuned a little sharper (hence, the term "stretched").

Some feel that sampling a stretched piano is more authentic than sampling an ordinary even-tempered piano, and stretching certainly helps an old piano sound newer and brighter, however, usually only skilled tuners and oscilloscopes know the difference.

My S90ES has a stretched set of samples that I use for solo piano sometimes, however, if I play these sounds layered with the other samples that are not stretched, they sound a little off.


-- ipgrunt
Amateur pianist, Son of a Pro
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#701147 - 02/22/07 03:48 AM Re: Stretch tuning in a digital piano  
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Anotherak Offline
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Anotherak  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 20
Finland
The only negative remark about the lack of stretch tuning that I've seen was in a Harmony Central review of the Yamaha CP-33: the reviewer considered the board unsuitable for classical music for this. I know HC reviews aren't exactly word of God, but the statement started bugging me nevertheless.

I see people playing classical on keyboards that don't simulate stretched tuning: in Recital #5 over at the adult beginners' forum we have Mike White on P-80, Vincentime on PX-110, mahlzeit on CP-33. I don't hear anything being off tune, but I'm coming from rock guitar. laugh

I would appreciate it if someone could point me to A-B samples of something being played with and without stretch tuning. I bet it would be educational to many here.

#1246855 - 08/10/09 05:02 PM Re: Stretch tuning in a digital piano [Re: Anotherak]  
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lsallen Offline
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lsallen  Offline
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Sunnyvale, CA
I've had a CP33 for a couple of years, and selling it this week for this very reason. (That plus the overly strong signal coming out of the middle keys)

#1982333 - 11/03/12 07:06 PM Re: Stretch tuning in a digital piano [Re: Anotherak]  
Joined: Jul 2012
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peterws Offline
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peterws  Offline
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Northern England.
Well, thanks gents for your info here. I think it makes a world of difference, especially with headphones . . .


"I am not a man. I am a free number"

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#1982433 - 11/04/12 12:17 AM Re: Stretch tuning in a digital piano [Re: Anotherak]  
Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 316
RUSS SHETTLE Offline
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RUSS SHETTLE  Offline
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Brandywine, Maryland
My CP5 has stretch tuning but I can't tell much of a difference at all to tell you the truth.


Russ
Yamaha CP5
Casio PX130
Yamaha AP Upright
#1982442 - 11/04/12 01:11 AM Re: Stretch tuning in a digital piano [Re: Anotherak]  
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WippenJackSpring Offline
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WippenJackSpring  Offline
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Idaho, U.S.A.
Hello Anotherak.

I am certainly no expert on this subject, but will give some subjective feedback, relative to my sense of hearing, and with respect to my Kawai MP10 stage DP.

Your post got me wondering about the MP10's stretch tuning capabilities. The Kawai MP10 has nine different settings for stretch tuning. They are as follows: Off, Narrow2, Narrow1, Normal, Wide 1, Wide 2, Wide 3, Wide 4, Wide 5. Apparenty the default setting is at "Normal", and that is where mine was set at.

I played with it some, and "liked" "Wide 2" and "Wide 3". Then settled on the "Wide 3" setting.

At least to my ears and central nervous system, the "Wide 3" sounds the "best". And again, to my sense of hearing, there is quite a difference along this nine step stretch tuning interval.

Bottom line for me, I am glad I found and made that adjustment, because my MP10 sounds better now - to me.

smile

WJS


Originally Posted by Anotherak
In stage pianos, Kawais and Rolands have it but Yamahas (aside from CP300, IIRC) and Privias, judging by blurbs/manuals, don't.

Is stretch tuning needed in a simulated piano at all? If it's not, why do some have it? If it is, why do people still use and like their CP33's and PX110's? Is this a feature I need to keep an eye on in choosing an instrument or is it a non-issue?

Thanks in advance for any input.

Last edited by WippenJackSpring; 11/04/12 11:41 AM.
#1982489 - 11/04/12 06:44 AM Re: Stretch tuning in a digital piano [Re: RUSS SHETTLE]  
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Dave Horne Offline
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Dave Horne  Offline
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Vught, The Netherlands
Originally Posted by RUSS SHETTLE
My CP5 has stretch tuning but I can't tell much of a difference at all to tell you the truth.


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