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#2010607 - 01/07/13 01:40 PM What does it take to connect a computer to a digital piano?  
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 1,372
Marko in Boston Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Marko in Boston  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 1,372
Boston, Massachusetts
I just bought my first digital piano and it does almost everything I could ever ask for. However, I see sooo many threads regarding some great piano software to the point where Im now very interested but mostly confused. Please forgive my musical technological ignorance, but can someone easily and simply explain how to hook up a computer to my digital piano? Exactly what does the software do and which should should I buy? How do I hook it up? What cables do I need? Mixers? etc. etc.

I believe I got a good starting point to make this happen, just don't know how.
I have: Kawai ES7(love!)and Sony Vaio laptop 8GB RAM, 750GB w/ Intel i7 processor.

Your thoughts and guidance would be much appreciated.

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#2010624 - 01/07/13 02:11 PM Re: What does it take to connect a computer to a digital piano? [Re: Marko in Boston]  
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 5,616
MacMacMac Offline
5000 Post Club Member
MacMacMac  Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 5,616
North Carolina
You'll need:
- PC or Mac. I use a PC laptop. It's old and relatively slow, but still works quite well. Any newer unit will serve even better, so no worries there.
- Sound system. You could plug headphones into the PC, or you can feed the PC sound to an amp and speakers.
- Piano library software for the PC.
- Upgrade sound card for the PC (maybe).

The basic setup looks like this: Piano Wiring 1 This uses a USB connection between the piano and the PC. This is possible for newer pianos that have a USB connection.

This diagram shows additional ways to hook things up: Piano Wiring 2 This shows three possible ways to connect the piano to a PC: USB, MIDI-to-USB, and MIDI. (The latter requires a PC sound card with a MIDI interface.)

This diagram adds a mixer to allow you to listen to either the PC piano sounds or the piano's native sounds, or both: Piano Wiring 3

And this one adds equalizers to tweak the sound, and a DVD player to allow play-along with an audio CD: Piano Wiring 4 This is what I use. I already had the piano, PC laptop, and headphones. I bought the rest of the equipment used on Ebay and Craig's List for around $375.

For piano software, there are many choices. Do an online search for "piano libraries" or "VST pianos" or something similar and you'll find many possibilities.

Also use this forum's search box to find threads in which this topic is discussed.

#2010635 - 01/07/13 02:25 PM Re: What does it take to connect a computer to a digital piano? [Re: Marko in Boston]  
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 7
pschmatz Offline
Junior Member
pschmatz  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 7
The easiest: The ES7 has a USB to host, and you need a simple USB cable (like this one http://www.monoprice.com/products/p...301&p_id=8616&seq=1&format=2)
This is a typical printer cable, which you probably already have.

Then download this app - http://www.synthesiagame.com, and configure the ES7 as Midi and Midi out, and try it out

#2010662 - 01/07/13 03:30 PM Re: What does it take to connect a computer to a digital piano? [Re: Marko in Boston]  
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,387
JFP Offline
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JFP  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,387
The Netherlands
Do you also want to utilize the audio input of the ES7 so you will be able to hear the software synths sound through the ES7 audio system ? If so , then there are a few rules to follow. If not than a simple USB to host connection (for MIDI control) will do.

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#2010665 - 01/07/13 03:46 PM Re: What does it take to connect a computer to a digital piano? [Re: pschmatz]  
Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 469
slipperykeys Offline
Full Member
slipperykeys  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 469
Dorset, England
Originally Posted by pschmatz
The easiest: The ES7 has a USB to host, and you need a simple USB cable (like this one http://www.monoprice.com/products/p...301&p_id=8616&seq=1&format=2)
This is a typical printer cable, which you probably already have.

Then download this app - http://www.synthesiagame.com, and configure the ES7 as Midi and Midi out, and try it out


Wow! They must be really special people.

Look what they say about their forums..

"If you have any questions or comments about Synthesia, hop over to the forums and make a post. Everyone is very friendly there and we'll definitely be able to help."

Can you believe it,? "Everyone is very friendly..." that's what it says.

Amazing....never known a forum like that.

#2163653 - 10/08/13 07:45 PM Re: What does it take to connect a computer to a digital piano? [Re: slipperykeys]  
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,333
tangleweeds Offline

Silver Supporter until Jan 11 2012
tangleweeds  Offline

Silver Supporter until Jan 11 2012


Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,333
Portland, OR
Originally Posted by slipperykeys
Can you believe it,? "Everyone is very friendly..." that's what it says.

Amazing....never known a forum like that.

Nice ladies' needlework forums.

Every once in a while someone will get hormonal and flounce, but mostly they're sugar-sweet. If anyone speaks an unkind word, you can hear the whole forum gasp and glue themselves to the screen to follow the drama.

Granted, generally such forums do have a vigilant list-mom moderating. But it's a very different (and relatively long-standing) internet culture and lineage, going back to usenet's rec.crafts.textiles.yarn and rec.crafts.textiles.needlework.


Please step aside. You're standing in your own way.
#2163655 - 10/08/13 07:50 PM Re: What does it take to connect a computer to a digital piano? [Re: Marko in Boston]  
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,333
tangleweeds Offline

Silver Supporter until Jan 11 2012
tangleweeds  Offline

Silver Supporter until Jan 11 2012


Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,333
Portland, OR
Oops, sorry, zombie thread. SIck at home and a little punchy here.

Carry on.


Please step aside. You're standing in your own way.
#2163664 - 10/08/13 08:33 PM Re: What does it take to connect a computer to a digital piano? [Re: Marko in Boston]  
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,827
doremi Offline
1000 Post Club Member
doremi  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,827
.

Last edited by doremi; 02/19/14 12:56 AM.

I am 'doremi' because I play scales smile
Had I progressed to playing chords,
I would be 'domisol' shocked

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