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#2027607 - 02/05/13 07:07 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Addendum: Even though I pretty much hate the Fatar Action on the Nord Stage 2 I'm still considering to buy one. That's how great the sounds and the usability are

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#2027612 - 02/05/13 07:17 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Nigeth, thanks for your post, it's interesting to read your thoughts.

It's perhaps worth noting that the 73-key versions of the NE4 (HP and SW73 respectively feature double the memory of the NE4D and the previous generation Electros. This allows a great selection of pianos to be loaded simultaneously, including the XL-sized samples.

Cheers,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
#2027895 - 02/06/13 07:06 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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This really looks like a fine controller (and I also really love the design).
I currently have a P155 that I use to drive Synthogy American D and I was planning on keeping it two or more years (I started learning to play the piano only 6 months ago, so for now the limit is my technique, not the instrument).
But since I started playing, I have been struggling with injuries (despite the fact that my teacher can't find anything wrong with the way I play) so I am looking at the VPC1 and I wonder if the cushioning might help to limit the stress on the tendons? (that and maybe the fact that wood is naturally more "dampening" than plastic).
James, I know you can't really answer this question (if it would help with my problems or not I mean), but since you probably have experimented with a lot of keyboard in your life, could you tell me how you would rank the "landing" (how abruptly the key stop when reaching the bottom) of the VPC1 ? (I suffer from agoraphobia, so I won't be able to test the keyboard when available and I will have to order it from Thonnman)
Thank you in advance for any information you might be able to provide smile


- Please, forgive my bad English smile

Jean-Luc
#2027936 - 02/06/13 09:00 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Hello Jean-Luc,

I'm sorry to read that you have started to experience some physical problems as a result of playing your DP. I wonder how your hands/arms feel after playing your teacher's (presumably acoustic?) piano?

Regarding the 'landing' of the VPC1's keyboard action, the cushioning undoubtedly helps to soften the key as it reaches the bottom, while also reducing vibrations and movement noise. I have played a range of different keyboard actions from various manufacturers, and in terms of 'soft-bottoming' and volume, I doubt many can match the Kawai actions - especially those with wooden-keys.

That being said, I'm afraid I cannot guarantee that the physical problems you have experienced as a result of playing your current DP, will not re-occur (to a greater or less extent) with other keyboards.

My apologies for sitting on the fence, however I'm sure you can understand my reluctance to make bold, sweeping claims that cannot be justified. It would be all too easy for me to say "Yes, buy the VPC1 and you'll never experience physical problems when playing ever again.', but I do not wish to give you false hope.

May I wish you the best of luck with your ongoing piano studies.

Kind regards,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
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#2027944 - 02/06/13 09:11 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: Jean-Luc]  
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Originally Posted by Jean-Luc
I started learning to play the piano only 6 months ago, so for now the limit is my technique, not the instrument).
But since I started playing, I have been struggling with injuries (despite the fact that my teacher can't find anything wrong with the way I play) so I am looking at the VPC1 and I wonder if the cushioning might help to limit the stress on the tendons? (that and maybe the fact that wood is naturally more "dampening" than plastic)


IMHO switching to a new keyboard will have no bearing on the injuries you are experiencing (which are quite common with motivated adult beginners -- the fact that your teacher doesn't see what you are doing to hurt yourself does not mean that it isn't happening)

I suggest you investigate taking some lessons from an Alexander Technique teacher. It is likely that you are using much more force than necessary or are misusing your body unconsciously. The piano keys require an amazingly small amount of force to move, however the degree of coordination that you need to play is something that cannot be built up overnight. Motivated adult beginners tend to get into the habit of " end gaming " of focusing through pure power of will and force to achieve a result while being oblivious to their mechanism and abusing themselves. An AT teacher can help you focus on the how of your movements that normally take place without conscious control.

Good luck to you!

http://www.alexandertechnique.com/at.htm

#2027948 - 02/06/13 09:19 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Yes, that's good advice.

My piano playing father is an advocate of Alexander Technique.

Another suggestion in a similar vein, might be to seek a consultation with an experienced chiropractor, who may be able to alleviate the pain in your hands and arms through gentile bone manipulation techniques.

(my sister is a chiropractor, by the way...)

Kind regards,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
#2027959 - 02/06/13 09:44 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Hello, I'm interested in possibly getting this later this year. I have a question about the "mod wheel" connection. How exactly could I connecting a modulation wheel or a pitch shifting wheel to this? For playing various orchestral parts?

I use to play a real piano when I was young, it was really old and I had it tuned and the tuner said "I can't fix this" I had to get rid of it after a while, eversince then I've been on semi weighted keyboard and they never felt as good as the real action it had. Hopefully I can demo this out and maybe get it! I heard weighted are good for writing orchestral stuff as well, so I just need to find a way to either use the current modwheel of my keyboard, or maybe buy a seperate control if I want to get this thing.

I'm currently on a none weighted keybed because I find it better to have no weight at all then slightly good weight/springy weight.

#2027962 - 02/06/13 09:54 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: Vincentj]  
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Hi Vincentj,

Originally Posted by Vincentj
How exactly could I connecting a modulation wheel or a pitch shifting wheel to this?


The VPC1 can serve as a sort of 'psudeo MIDI interface'. So, if your current semi-weighted board (with the pitchbend/modulation wheels) has a MIDI OUT jack, you would simply plug this into the VPC1's MIDI IN jack. Then, connect the VPC1 to your computer using a USB cable. The pitchbend/modulation wheel control messages will be sent to the computer with the VPC1's keyboard messages.

I hope this helps.

Cheers,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
#2027999 - 02/06/13 11:21 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Thank you very much for your answers James and "theJourney".
James, I perfectly understand you can't guarantee the VPC1 would solve my problem or even help with it, and your reluctance to do so is another proof of your integrity smile
It is very difficult for me to look for another teacher (I live in a very small town and due to my agoraphobia, my ability to travel is very limited). I would agree with both of you about the excess motivation might very well play a big role in my problems smile Another fact might play a role, while my finger fit without problems between the black keys on the real piano we have for the lessons (a venerable upright in dear need of tuning according to my ears wink ) they tend to get a bit stuck between the keys of the yamaha so I probably bend my wrist a bit too much to avoid them (especially when my right hand is near or below middle C). That's yet another problem I would hope to solve by changing keyboard (my current problem is a De Quervain tendonitis and they often happen due to a bent wrist while moving the thumb).
I asked about the softness of the "landing" on the VPC1 because I noticed a shock when reaching the bottom of the key on my keyboard, shock not present on the real upright.
Thanks again to both of you smile

Last edited by Jean-Luc; 02/06/13 11:24 AM. Reason: Added current problem :)

- Please, forgive my bad English smile

Jean-Luc
#2028041 - 02/06/13 12:49 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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I've had many keyboards and the only one that had caused me feel some pain in my arms is the CA63 which has the same RM3 action as in VPC1. This was not much of a problem to me since it got improved and even disappeared at all with more practice, however I think it is one of the heaviest feeling keyboards so if you've experienced problems with other hammer action keyboards you'll most certainly experience the same with VPC1.


https://myspace.com/evgenykumanov/music/songs
Currently: Kawai ES7 -> Garritan CFX Lite
Previously: Kawai MP6, Kawai CA63, Roland RD-700SX, Roland FP-5, Yamaha P90, Korg SP-200, Casio CDP-100
#2028048 - 02/06/13 01:06 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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i feel the music stand is so far back there, it just looks like it is hanging on for its life about to fall off the edge. i think it would look better if it was closer to the keys.

[Linked Image]

of course putting it in the middle would require holes to mount the stand and that would ruin the smooth finish of the top. i think a heavy wieghted portable stand that just sits on top (with a hidden rubber grip bottom) would be better than the current implimentation of putting it so far back.

Last edited by adak; 02/06/13 03:23 PM.

Casio Privia PX-150

#2028296 - 02/06/13 07:40 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: adak]  
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Hi adak,

Originally Posted by adak
i feel the music stand is so far back there, it just looks like it is hanging on for its life about to fall off the edge. i think it would look better if it was closer to the keys.


Originally Posted by adak
of course putting it in the middle would require holes to mount the stand and that would ruin the smooth finish of the top.


+1


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
#2028918 - 02/07/13 07:24 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: adak]  
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Originally Posted by adak
Does the VPC1 have a matching piano stand that can be purchased separately?


No, I'm afraid not.

Originally Posted by adak
Putting it on an X-stand does seem proper.


X-stands are horrible things.
I would recommend a table stand instead.

Cheers,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
#2028998 - 02/07/13 09:49 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: Kawai James]  
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Originally Posted by Kawai James
Originally Posted by adak
Does the VPC1 have a matching piano stand that can be purchased separately?


No, I'm afraid not.

x


That's a bit of a surprise. I would have thought such a controller would really benefit from a matching stand, being so heavy and to locate the pedals. You wouldn't want such a beast to tip over!

#2029008 - 02/07/13 10:23 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Well, if there's a strong enough demand from users, it's perhaps something that can be considered in the future - you never know...

However, for the time being, I still recommend using a table stand over an X-stand. wink

Cheers,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
#2029010 - 02/07/13 10:33 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Hi James,


I have been a relatively silent observer on this forum, so I apologize to the veterans if my questions might seem a bit too basic. However, I truly appreciate the input you have brought us with regards to the new Kawai products, and taking into consideration real concerns of current (and potentially new customers).

I am contemplating purchasing a VPC1. However, I only have the Galaxy software and do not plan on purchasing any additional software. Instead, I plan on connecting my iPad to the MIDI controller/ VPC-1 and run iPad apps such as iGrand or similar. Please let me know if you anticipate any issues when doing that.

Please see below

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VPrK_mkRrbg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRm9sFxnw48

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubb...0ipad%20-%20Anyone%20tr.html#Post2028910

Looking forward to your reply

Thank you!!

Makis


#2029210 - 02/08/13 09:49 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Hello Makis,

I'm afraid I do not have a great deal of experience running virtual instruments (especially pianos) from an iPad (or other tablet).

However, provided you have the necessary MIDI adaptor on your iPad, I expect the software will work fine.

But is this app really better than Galaxy running on a computer?

Kind regards,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
#2029242 - 02/08/13 11:55 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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I was thinking;

- now that the VPC is out and have the support of several software companies ; why don't they make a nice iPad Remote App voor their Software instruments ?! Then you can leave your laptop / PC somewhere else and only place a tablet on the surface of your VPC, or use a nice little iPad holder on a mic stand. In that way you can comfortably control your software with the tablet's touch surface (like DIY Kronos interface ;-) You don't have to run an iApp software piano from the iPad itself , which is inferior to a good SW instrument, but still have the nice, small and tactile form factor of the tablet as a user interface. Best of both worlds I would say.

James; perhaps the Kawai reps that talk to these companies can convince them to develop something like this ? I've been looking around in iApp world, but there's not something like that around yet. For other kinds of software there ARE already nice remote apps, like VNC, Cubase , Roland Hardware synths, etc

So to start with an Ivory, Pianoteq, Galaxy and NI remote app. Bonus; once they have that, they can easily develop more of those apps for the other products they have.

Wouldn't that be nice ; you're own completely customizable and extendible touch screen interface for all your software synths and stuff. It's not even fixed to a certain keyboard so you can use it anytime / anywhere and in combination with every keyboard controller.

Last thought: perhaps it's even quite easy to port the GUI of most SW Instruments to an iAPP, it's sort of a mini OSX under the hood anyway, so a good programmer...I think Korg did this already (MS20, Polysix etc), but also included the synth engine , which isn't necessary for what I mean.


#2029245 - 02/08/13 12:05 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: Kawai James]  
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Originally Posted by Kawai James

But is this app really better than Galaxy running on a computer?


Sometimes "best" is not what customers are looking for; most convenient can also be important in many situations. I think laptops are being replaced by ipads in many homes these days and the desktop computer might simply be in another room.


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#2029251 - 02/08/13 12:21 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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@Amaruk

that's why: remote App's !

#2029334 - 02/08/13 03:06 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: Amaruk]  
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Originally Posted by Amaruk
Originally Posted by Kawai James

But is this app really better than Galaxy running on a computer?


Sometimes "best" is not what customers are looking for; most convenient can also be important in many situations. I think laptops are being replaced by ipads in many homes these days and the desktop computer might simply be in another room.

Yes I agree. I've previously stated that the local College here uses iPad software for many virtual instruments connected to cheap DP's.

The iGrand piano(s) are a lot, maybe 1/10 cheaper than V Grand, more convenient to use, and the quality is surprisingly good. Better? Better than GarageBand although that's not saying much. Better is always a personal opinion, and what does better mean anyway.

Now someone has posted info about a new iPad piano, that includes the ability to change the velocity curve (same as iGrand). It seems like Kawai have not tested VPC1 with iPad? I don't think Kawai should ignore this market, like they have ignored Mac so far with the VPC! wink The VPC should just work with iPad as is anyway. But ignoring a potential audience could mean allowing someone else to step in.

Edit to add: Einaudi (who's he) was on BBC TV before Xmas extolling the virtues of iPad music ability, and even played a segment of I Giorni on one.

Last edited by spanishbuddha; 02/08/13 03:12 PM.
#2029341 - 02/08/13 03:21 PM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: spanishbuddha]  
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Originally Posted by spanishbuddha
Edit to add: Einaudi (who's he)

Ludovico Einaudi. I have his CD "Stanze" (new age harp). I think he generally plays piano. I'm not a huge fan of new age (too repetitive, little development, no dissonance) but like that CD a lot.

#2029651 - 02/09/13 05:22 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: Kawai James]  
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Hi, James,

Could you tell please whether KAWAI addressed this issue already with the VPC1 or the development of it was completed and closed to the time of this earlier discussion? Thx.

Tom Love with KAWAIs promise about ..." with "future keyboards"
Originally Posted by Kawai James
Yes, this point was discussed with the digital piano keyboard development team last week. in order to recreate the feel of a grand piano action, we agreed that the correct position of the let-off point was very important.

As others will vouch, Kawai's digital piano action team are committed to constantly improving the quality and realism of their keyboard designs, so I expect we may see this 'playing off the jack' behaviour implemented in future instruments.


Acoustic: own clavichord!, Burger&Jacoby,Biel (nice vintage vertical)
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#2029670 - 02/09/13 07:09 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Temperament, I believe the behaviour is the same as with the original RM3 Grand action.

Kind regards,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
#2029678 - 02/09/13 07:32 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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I am sure this has already been discussed in other topics, so I apologize for asking it again. How is the velocity measured on the RM3 action? Is there a pressure sensor activated by the "hammer" striking it or there are two sensors which measure the time of the hammer travel and calculate velocity?


https://myspace.com/evgenykumanov/music/songs
Currently: Kawai ES7 -> Garritan CFX Lite
Previously: Kawai MP6, Kawai CA63, Roland RD-700SX, Roland FP-5, Yamaha P90, Korg SP-200, Casio CDP-100
#2029682 - 02/09/13 07:37 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: CyberGene]  
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Originally Posted by CyberGene
I am sure this has already been discussed in other topics, so I apologize for asking it again. How is the velocity measured on the RM3 action? Is there a pressure sensor activated by the "hammer" striking it or there are two sensors which measure the time of the hammer travel and calculate velocity?


It's a triple position-sensor action. No pressure sensor. The original RM3 didn't have 3 sensors. The new one should be capable of rapid, undamped repeats.

#2029691 - 02/09/13 07:59 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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My understanding is that when you have two sensors, the time of hammer travel between them is measured. This doesn't allow for fast repetition since the hammer may have not returned back enough to activate the first sensor again, that's why a third sensor is added at the strike point to measure pressure. I may be wrong though.


https://myspace.com/evgenykumanov/music/songs
Currently: Kawai ES7 -> Garritan CFX Lite
Previously: Kawai MP6, Kawai CA63, Roland RD-700SX, Roland FP-5, Yamaha P90, Korg SP-200, Casio CDP-100
#2029709 - 02/09/13 08:55 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: CyberGene]  
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Originally Posted by CyberGene
My understanding is that when you have two sensors, the time of hammer travel between them is measured. This doesn't allow for fast repetition since the hammer may have not returned back enough to activate the first sensor again, that's why a third sensor is added at the strike point to measure pressure. I may be wrong though.


It works like you said, only not with pressure. The extra sensor is in between the two old sensor positions. So now you don't have to release the key as much to retrigger a note, also the damper stays off if you only release to the middle sensor and then play another note. Pressure doesn't need to come into it.

I suspect pressure pads are difficult for some reason - either for accuracy or durability because it really would be much easier to have a real hammer hitting a pressure switch and another sensor for the damper on the key. That's it! Would be so much easier to calibrate. Probably feel more realistic too. None this interpolating velocity stuff, just pure whack of the hammer and dampers determined by the key position. There must be a reason why they aren't doing it though.

#2029724 - 02/09/13 09:14 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
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Sofia, Bulgaria
I just got a crazy idea. Why not use something like a Rhodes piano? Not for the sound of it but instead use it as a MIDI controller someway. There is a real hammer striking a real tine which induces a pickup. What you need to do is to translate pickup signal into a MIDI value. This seems to me as a better approximation of a real piano, for example repeated notes would strike a vibrating tine which supposedly generates different velocity than if it was static. Also there may be a real string resonance by cleverly measuring open damper tines self-induction, etc.

I remember I've read somewhere there were a few late Rhodes pianos with a MIDI output and I am wondering if they used a similar principle for MIDI generation.


https://myspace.com/evgenykumanov/music/songs
Currently: Kawai ES7 -> Garritan CFX Lite
Previously: Kawai MP6, Kawai CA63, Roland RD-700SX, Roland FP-5, Yamaha P90, Korg SP-200, Casio CDP-100
#2029736 - 02/09/13 09:33 AM Re: Kawai VPC [Re: davinwv]  
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 953
R_B Offline
500 Post Club Member
R_B  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 953
I think "real hammers" striking transducers is possible, even practical.
There is also the question of "product positioning", i.e. whether some large percentage of the buying public would turn away from a "not so silent" instrument.
I am thinking "keyboard klatter", somewhat reminiscent of Underwood typewriters (-:

It may be fine on stage, in a studio, etc., but manufacturers have to appeal to the largest buying audience(pun) they can.

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