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#1988650 - 11/19/12 06:48 PM Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity?
justpin Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 504
Loc: Holmes Chapel
I just saw a youtube vid, and it said that most low end DPs have a key thumping noise...

Playing I notice it....

Apparently if said something to the effect of as you become a better pianist and you stand to have more fluid motion in your finger tips. The thumping noise of the keys will dissipate considerably (but will not dissappear?.

I'm still very much a beginner, and I used to be an FFFF (yes +1 F) player but have recently started to be a little softer on the keys.... but I use headphones!

Any ideas as to if this is true or not?

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#1988891 - 11/20/12 10:13 AM Re: Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity? [Re: justpin]
spanishbuddha Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/09
Posts: 3001
Loc: UK
My tip is if you use a DP to practice, either with speakers or headphones, turn the volume up so it's loud, as loud as an acoustic if possible. Now you have to learn to play softly with control, or go deaf.

Conversely having the volume low encourages key pounding, and with plastic keys on many entry level DP's that means lots of clackity clack.

If you're a beginner perhaps start by turning the volume up a wee bit more than you're used to, and work with that.

#1988906 - 11/20/12 10:45 AM Re: Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity? [Re: spanishbuddha]
Farmerjones Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 494
Loc: Midwest USA
I started, as many, on a non-weighted keyboard. Namely from a Yamaha PSR, to a Yamaha DP95. Until my fingers built strength, i thought i was probably heavy handed. The more i play, the more i think it's not really about strength but attack. One sort of has to snap a piano key or else it won't sound. Organs one simply presses the keys. Then later you figure out just how little snap it takes to fire a piano key, real hammer or not. I've played Yamaha C & G grands. Weight/action-wise, they feel about the same as the DP95.
There's something to be said for being able to hear what you're playing and not machine noise. I at least turn it up so i can't hear the keys. Or if playing along with a CD, i'll run the volume so i can hear both equally. Same goes with playing along with somebody else. In a small room especially, volume control (DPs) are a good thing.
view my profile for a link to my YT page.

#1988909 - 11/20/12 10:52 AM Re: Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity? [Re: justpin]
zrtf90 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/29/12
Posts: 3333
Loc: Ireland (ex England)
I think you're using the volume control intelligently, Farmerjones. The difficulty with the DP is that those without acoustic piano experience can use a low volume level for comfort and convenience (as much for others in the household as themselves) and in this way be unaccustomed to controlling the volume with their fingers.

You can't play an acoustic quietly without sufficient control.

#1988910 - 11/20/12 10:57 AM Re: Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity? [Re: justpin]
sinophilia Offline

Gold Supporter until Sept. 05 2014

Registered: 06/26/12
Posts: 1497
Loc: Italy
The thumping is very noticeable on my Casio PX-135, but only if somebody plays it with headphones on. If I am playing it, either with speakers or headphones, I can't hear the thumping, even if the music is very soft and the volume is low, so this probably mean the thumping is not so loud after all.

@spanishbuddha, the thing you say about volume is very true. I turned it up quite a bit since I found out I didn't have enough dynamic range to play with when I kept the volume low. It is much better to have a loud piano and do one's best to play softly than to turn the volume down.
Diana & Wally - Yamaha W110BW
Martha Argerich... is an incarnation of the artistic metaphor of the "eternal feminine" that draws us upward. (Sergio Sablich)

#1988921 - 11/20/12 11:33 AM Re: Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity? [Re: justpin]
mr_super-hunky Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 4289
Spanishbuddha is making a ton of sense. I have a higher end digital piano (Roland KR-7)and its keys 'thump' as well. They all do. Even the action in an acoustic piano does when pressed.

I absolutely love my digital, ..BUT... you MUST be very careful and always try (if you can) to play it as close to an acoustic piano as you possibly can. If you don't, you can easily learn bad habits that are very hard to correct later.

The best examples are in touch (as spanishbuddha said) and in pedaling. It is WAYYY to easy to simply put a brick on the pedal of a digital and forget about it. In addition, playing at a lower volume than an equivalent acoustic can easily lead to becoming a pounder. I know because I am one {horrible pedaler too) for the exact reasons mentioned.

Should these horrible things happen to you (becoming a pounder AND a horrible pedaler), don't worry as there is hope. It's just going to be much more difficult to fix because you will first need to undue a bad habit and then learn new good ones. It sounds simple but it will screw with your mind for a while until you are re-wired. This is not easy to do.

Edited by Mr Super-Hunky (11/20/12 11:49 AM)

#1988928 - 11/20/12 11:42 AM Re: Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity? [Re: justpin]
BeccaBb Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/09/11
Posts: 918
Loc: Fort Frances, On Canada
My Roland also thumps but I only notice it in the higher octaves.

As for the volume. When I first got it, I picked a set volume for the monitor (about half way) and the headphones (just under that because they are louder.) The only time I touch volume is when I switch between the monitor and headphones. I'd love to crank it up more with the monitor (and sometimes do) but I have a family and neighbors to think of. Otherwise my volume control requires my fingers to do the work. smile

I really think that the lack of vibration is why we can hear the thumping. On my acoustic I don't notice it thumping but I'm sure it does thump. However when you press a key the vibrations mask it. Nothing on a dp to mask it. (that's my theory anyways. LOL)
Began: 01-12-11

Roland RD300NX
1947 Gulbranson spinet piano

#1988929 - 11/20/12 11:45 AM Re: Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity? [Re: justpin]
justpin Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 504
Loc: Holmes Chapel
My new teacher put me through some lullaby pieces to get me to stop hammering the keys, and I think its working as I am a bit lighter on the keys.... it was funny because I kept the volume low to protect my hearing, so had to hammer to get it so I could hear it.

However I do have the brick on sustain problem.

#1988930 - 11/20/12 11:47 AM Re: Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity? [Re: justpin]
justpin Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 504
Loc: Holmes Chapel
Does this tie in with being able to feel key presses through the stand? I know this is way too hard but I rest my foot on it sometimes (right one as I only have one pedal). I've sometimes had to take my headphones off thinking there is somebody walking around in the flat upstairs. frown

#1989154 - 11/20/12 10:41 PM Re: Thumping DP keys lack of fluidity? [Re: justpin]
aTallGuyNH Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/22/12
Posts: 513
I would recommend getting some time on an acoustic if at all possible, even one in crummy condition. I couldn't possibly develop any pedaling skills whatsoever without my out of tune spinet. When I'm on the DP, I'm pretty much in brick mode, focusing on touch and rhythm.

As for the vibration theory, my money is on felt or lack thereof.
"...when you do practice properly, it seems to take no time at all. Just do it right five times or so, and then stop." -- JimF

Working on: my aversion to practicing in front of my wife

1978 Vose & Sons spinet "Rufus"
1914 Huntington upright "Mabel"



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