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Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano #2130806 08/10/13 12:38 PM
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KlavierLiebhaber Offline OP
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Friends,

I have been blown away by the Roland DP-90S. It has by far and wide a much better sound and action than any of the uprights in my price range (my budget is still under $10K). I truly had to stop and think for a second because I was so convinced I was at the keyboard of a top tier concert grand.

However I am hung up on the fact that it's still not a REAL piano...In the end, I am not making strings vibrate. As sensitive as the the DP-90S is to my touch, I know in my head, that this is a digital piano, even though my ears and fingers are quite convinced otherwise. Switching between the DP-90S and the Steinway B on the other side of the room, it was a pretty amazing experience. And of course, night time practice through headphones is a plus with a digital, and with a good pair of headphones, the sound of the DP-90S was still extremely pleasurable.

I'm an Advanced amateur classical pianist, preparing for some amateur competitions in the next few years and I just can't decide if I am being silly and should just go with the fact that the DP-90S speaks to me, or if I'm making a mistake spending ca $3500 on this instrument.

Thoughts?


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Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130827 08/10/13 01:26 PM
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Go for an acoustic.

Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130836 08/10/13 01:37 PM
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Another vote for the acoustic. Why? Because all the pianos at competitions will be acoustic. If competitions are a person's focus, an acoustic will likely be better preparation.

On the other side, someone more interested in recording at home, is likely better off with a digital, because it is easier to get a clean recording vs. an acoustic.

Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130838 08/10/13 01:46 PM
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I'd say let your fingers and ears guide you. It seems to me that they like the Roland and you are likely to practice more on it because of the headphone thing.

It's not a real acoustic, but I think the differences are less important than total practice time, particularly if you can do some of your practice on an acoustic so you develop your ability to adjust from one piano to another. Remember that you can't buy that Steinway B for $10,000, so whatever acoustic you get will also probably be a compromise relative to competition pianos.

Of course, there's another path as well: Try a cheaper piano, like the Roland FP7F. That saves almost all your money. You could probably even buy an acoustic *and* a night-time digital. Given how serious you are about piano, it might be worth it.

Last edited by gvfarns; 08/10/13 01:47 PM.
Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130839 08/10/13 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by KlavierLiebhaber
Friends,

I have been blown away by the Roland DP-90S. It has by far and wide a much better sound and action than any of the uprights in my price range (my budget is still under $10K). I truly had to stop and think for a second because I was so convinced I was at the keyboard of a top tier concert grand.

However I am hung up on the fact that it's still not a REAL piano...In the end, I am not making strings vibrate. As sensitive as the the DP-90S is to my touch, I know in my head, that this is a digital piano, even though my ears and fingers are quite convinced otherwise. Switching between the DP-90S and the Steinway B on the other side of the room, it was a pretty amazing experience. And of course, night time practice through headphones is a plus with a digital, and with a good pair of headphones, the sound of the DP-90S was still extremely pleasurable.

I'm an Advanced amateur classical pianist, preparing for some amateur competitions in the next few years and I just can't decide if I am being silly and should just go with the fact that the DP-90S speaks to me, or if I'm making a mistake spending ca $3500 on this instrument.

Thoughts?


Hi Klavier,

Normally, most of us would say it isn't even a close call. In other words, the automatic default would be to opt for the true, acoustic piano. However, I am not so quick to tow the party line, especially in a case such as yours. The issue, here, is that you are serious about your classical training, and are even preparing to perform at recitals and/or competition.

I would say get the acoustic upright (assuming it plays well and is in good condition), as long as you have regular access to a Grand piano to play upon, for at least a few hours every week. In other words, you would be normally be training and practicing daily, on your acoustic upright. However, it is important to take the repertoire you have learned and practiced, and transfer it to the more sensitive action of the Grand.

As you are probably aware, most acoustic uprights do not feature a double Escapement mechanism/system. This makes it impossible to accurately play (on an upright) many piano compositions that require subtle technique and expressions -- e.g. pianissimo, rapid repetitions and trills, etc. In other words, extremely expressive and emotive playing is difficult to impossible on an acoustic upright, as compared to a Grand piano action.

Now, the Roland DP-90S replicates the Double Escapement mechanism of a Grand Piano with a triple key sensor. Other digital pianos have this feature, as well. At the price / budget you are looking at, you might want to look closely at the Kawai CA65 or CA95, as well.

Or, you could save a considerable amount of money, and still find an excellent Digital Piano alternative (with triple key contact sensors) in a Roland, Casio, and Yamaha models, which are still "console" style, and have built-in speaker system.

Well, you have some serious thinking and decision making to do.


Last edited by Tritium; 08/10/13 01:52 PM.
Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130887 08/10/13 03:26 PM
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If you want the Roland take the Roland. I have old concert acoustic, which at the time of it's producing was the the higher-mmiddle class upright. Today... soryy... I find sometimes more pleasure to play on the horribly sounding CLP-120 than my acoustic. Yes, it has MANY MANY advantages over the Yamaha, the most that it is natural. But, I just do not like practicing on this piano, the action is so light than I cannot develop it more than the level I achieved now, it sounds not good...

So if you can have a decent digital against the acoustic you don't like, get the digital.But if your budget is under 10k$, you should look for some new W. HOFFMAN pianos (BEchstein mid-level) and try them. Fot that price you for sure will find some decent new or used piano. I think, you can look for the used tier-one upright for that price which is like 20-years old.



PS I am not a digital fun, but the guy who loves to play on the best possible instrumnet. And, sometimes, bad acoustic is not the wisest solution. And I do not have money for a decent upright.

Last edited by kapelli; 08/10/13 03:34 PM.
Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130932 08/10/13 04:45 PM
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Go for the Roland but forget about excelling in the competitions on an acoustic. The Roland will have flattered your ability. At least you will have enjoyed the journey. But, if you're serious about the competitions, the best quality acoustic within budget has to be the way to go. Maybe used.

Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130943 08/10/13 05:04 PM
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KlavierLiebhaber
There are so few threads on this digital piano,and yours surprised me on two counts.

Firstly, you appeared to really connect with the digital, a thing so few people do, even those spending a lot more money than this costs (it`s not cheap). I did the same with the DP I have now, and would find it hard to part with it`s dulcet tones.

Secondly, you could compare the piano almost in favourable (but not of course, preferential) terms alongside a Steinway which would be beyond most people`s dreams or spending sense. I might add I`ve been blown away by the DP 90S`s beautiful looks, having never heard it played in the flesh.

Now, realistically, what would it cost for a decent upright, for competition standard renditions? Would it be easy to adjust to the competition piano? Any easier than the digital?

You could try out the DP 90 minus the S. You`d save a fortune, the sound should be the same, but the action may be slightly down, I don`t know.

I`d buy the DP and if I had the space, a chesp serviceable acoustic. And now you`ve re whetted my appetite, (I`ve always lusted after that piano) that may happen to me sooner than expected . . . .What will SHE say??

Last edited by peterws; 08/10/13 05:06 PM.

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Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130967 08/10/13 05:57 PM
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Oh that's interesting! The DP 90 costs €1800 while the DP 90s costs €3000.

€1200 difference - that's not far short of the entire cost of my DP (which has a very similar spec to these two, byt the way, apart from not having fake ivory or three sensors).

What is the difference between the DP90 and the DP90s? As far as I can see, the only difference, apart from the colour is that the 90 is Ivory S Feel but the 90s is 'PHAIII'!!

So they ARE different, after all: different enough for Roland to slap a €1200 premium on the latter. (admittedly the 's' version is also shinier, but that surely doesn't account for this massive price difference......remember in the 1970's - you used to pay a premium for 'matt' - 'shiny' was OUT...

Well, well, well!


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Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130982 08/10/13 06:51 PM
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I disagree. A digital is a real piano. Compare a top digital with the clunky, 57-key keyboard instrument that J. S. Bach played. There's no comparison. (And yet conservatories will say that you need a concert grand in order to interpret Bach properly--does this mean that if Bach sat down at a modern concert grand he wouldn't be able to play a lick?)

Today, not some time in the future, a big-time classical concert could be played on a tricked out top-of-the-line digital, and the audience wouldn't miss anything.

As for amateur competitions, why not practice on a digital? What's going to matter is if you can hit all the notes at tempo, and you can practice that on a concert grand, a digital, or a silent keyboard like the ones concert pianists used to use in the 1930's. If you can't hit all the notes at tempo on a digital, you won't be able to do it on an acoustic piano either. In the past on this forum it has been noted that big-time concert pianists like Valentina Lisitsa and Andre Watts use digitals for practicing.

Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2130987 08/10/13 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Gyro
I disagree.


With whom are you disagreeing? Not me, sir! I agree with what you said - the assertion you make about Bach is simply a fact.

As for the rest, I also agree. Up to a point.

But in general, professional players tend to be less sentimental about their instrument than lesser mortals. It's a tool to accomplish something. If digitals can do it, then so much the better. However, this is still not 100% the case, but I don't think its so far off. Especially if you consider things form the audience's point of view, sitting way back in the auditorium or in front of speakers, rather than your own, sitting right at the piano.


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Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: toddy] #2131005 08/10/13 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by toddy
What is the difference between the DP90 and the DP90s? As far as I can see, the only difference, apart from the colour is that the 90 is Ivory S Feel but the 90s is 'PHAIII'!!

Note what Roland says:

"The more affordable DP90 is outfitted with the Ivory Feel-S Keyboard with Escapement, which features the same progressive hammer action and escapement as the top-line PHA III. The keys are constructed of a one-piece proprietary material that provides excellent moisture absorbency."

This should surely lay to rest the idea that Ivory Feel-S is anything other than PHAIII with just the keys being single-piece construction.

You really are paying a large premium for those two-tone keys (and some extra polish!).

To the OP. As long as you get to play an acoustic from time to time, to make sure that your skills remain transferable, I see nothing wrong with following your heart and getting the Roland. The current crop of Roland DPs are really very good.


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

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Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2131011 08/10/13 08:25 PM
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KlavierLiebhaber, I have read your post, here:

I have been blown away by the Roland DP-90S. It has by far and wide a much better sound and action than any of the uprights in my price range (my budget is still under $10K). I truly had to stop and think for a second because I was so convinced I was at the keyboard of a top tier concert grand.

However I am hung up on the fact that it's still not a REAL piano...In the end, I am not making strings vibrate. As sensitive as the the DP-90S is to my touch, I know in my head, that this is a digital piano, even though my ears and fingers are quite convinced otherwise. Switching between the DP-90S and the Steinway B on the other side of the room, it was a pretty amazing experience. And of course, night time practice through headphones is a plus with a digital, and with a good pair of headphones, the sound of the DP-90S was still extremely pleasurable.

I'm an Advanced amateur classical pianist, preparing for some amateur competitions in the next few years and I just can't decide if I am being silly and should just go with the fact that the DP-90S speaks to me, or if I'm making a mistake spending ca $3500 on this instrument.

Thoughts?

________________________________________________________________________________

Yes, there are always thoughts about anything piano! It is always great to have an excuse to drop by - into a music store. I was looking for a piece of music and the clerk helped me find it - because I never can. One has to walk by the digitals to reach the paper music and I usually do - just that - walk by - because I have a yam P 95 and a 20 year old CLP-50 and to me digitals are the awesome digitals that they are. But this time in the store I slowed down enough to read P105 $699 and 155 $999, as I remember the numbers, which made me roll my eyes with a smile because here at MW people are always listing countless models of digital pianos and I have no idea what they are or what they look like or what they sound like. I ran my fingers across the keys of these two pianos and they sounded and felt awesome - but just like my yam P95. I only need one more piano for the rest of my life and that is the 48 weighted key piano, battery operated that I can keep by my side while I live my daily life. But when I am at home in my shack, I often lift the cover of the keys of my 3 legged piano - smile at the sound of the 5 keys at the high end of the piano that my knuckles have struck - and I am humbly grateful that the keys sound beautifully in tune for yet another day.



Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2131015 08/10/13 08:37 PM
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http://rickjonespiano.com/steinways.htm

Steinway for 18 898

Maybe you can beat him down to 13? Lol

I would say to do what the other guys have already advised you to do.
Follow your heart with the digital and ensure u can practice on an acoustic to make sure your skills are transferable.

I would imagine that the roland would better mimic the action of a grand piano and be better off for classical practice than an equivalent upright?

On the other hand
Have you also considered used grand pianos from Chinese manufacturers?
The premium Chinese manufacturers like Hailun and Ritmuller?

With $10 000 u got a lot of options. If you can stretch a little bit above that even more.

Maybe those grand pianos are worth trying out?

I believe the Hailun HG178 sells for around $13,000 brand new

Hallet and Davis full grand 6"2 $6480 (Jim laabs)

Used ritmuller baby grand can sell for around $ 5000

Yamaha C3 full grand for $11,400 used ( Jim laabs sale)

What about baby grands? They sell for less and their action should be superior than an upright?

Otto meister baby grand sells for $6896 ( Rick jones i think)

Maybe you should check the guy out below? (Jimlaabs)

that is if you really want the acoustic.

I apologize if I am complicating your decision lol. But you really gotta ponder on it to be happy in the end. The convenience of a digital is that you can play with headphones and put in more practice hours.
You've gotta decide whether the benefits of a digital outweigh the benefits of an acoustic piano for your particular situation.


http://www.jimlaabsmusic.com/pianos...ed-pianos/used-grand-pianos/cat_311.html

If I am not allowed to quote prices please let me know.
I don't really know if that is against forum regulations etc.
Just trying to be helpful.

Cheers.


Last edited by Mta88; 08/10/13 08:44 PM.

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Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: voxpops] #2131026 08/10/13 09:10 PM
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Originally Posted by voxpops
[
Note what Roland says:

"The more affordable DP90 is outfitted with the Ivory Feel-S Keyboard with Escapement, which features the same progressive hammer action and escapement as the top-line PHA III. The keys are constructed of a one-piece proprietary material that provides excellent moisture absorbency."

This should surely lay to rest the idea that Ivory Feel-S is anything other than PHAIII with just the keys being single-piece construction.

You really are paying a large premium for those two-tone keys (and some extra polish!).



Ha! Yes, I read this too. But I assumed it was marketing slight of hand and that it meant 'the same' in terms of progressive action and escapement only - not other mechanical aspects. I wouldn't put it past them.....and I love Roland....just not so confident about marketing departments...

But maybe you're right smile


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Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2131027 08/10/13 09:21 PM
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Well, before Roland changed their designations, Ivory Feel-S was not differentiated from PHAIII.

"The FP-7F features Roland’s newly developed PHA III Ivory Feel-S Keyboard with Escapement."

Yes, it's all marketing double-speak - they need to justify the price differential somehow!


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Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2131053 08/10/13 11:42 PM
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Originally Posted by KlavierLiebhaber
Friends,

I have been blown away by the Roland DP-90S. It has by far and wide a much better sound and action than any of the uprights in my price range (my budget is still under $10K). I truly had to stop and think for a second because I was so convinced I was at the keyboard of a top tier concert grand.

However I am hung up on the fact that it's still not a REAL piano...In the end, I am not making strings vibrate. As sensitive as the the DP-90S is to my touch, I know in my head, that this is a digital piano, even though my ears and fingers are quite convinced otherwise. Switching between the DP-90S and the Steinway B on the other side of the room, it was a pretty amazing experience. And of course, night time practice through headphones is a plus with a digital, and with a good pair of headphones, the sound of the DP-90S was still extremely pleasurable.

I'm an Advanced amateur classical pianist, preparing for some amateur competitions in the next few years and I just can't decide if I am being silly and should just go with the fact that the DP-90S speaks to me, or if I'm making a mistake spending ca $3500 on this instrument.

Thoughts?


I have been told that uprights aren't real pianos either.

Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2131077 08/11/13 01:20 AM
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Dear friends,

I am most grateful for this lively and insightful discussion. No doubt, the IDEAL would be to write a check at the dealer's and walk out knowing that my new Steinway D, or Bösendorfer Imperial was being
prepared for delivery to my house! (stops to dream for a moment) With that option being completely impossible at this point in my life however... (comes back down to reality)....

The Roland DP-90s has made me swoon by its ability to deliver the sound and experience that's the next best thing to a concert grand instrument. Even a top tier Bechstein, Bösendorfer or Steinway vertical will not feel or sound the way a grand does.

The option of going to a Chinese or other asian brand for a small baby grand was mentioned in the thread: though you would certainly get an action that's favorable (with excellent tech prep and care) the sound will be much lower quality than a larger grand, say 6' (which is out of my price range).

I guess when I put the Roland DP-90S next to the verticals or grands that would be in my price range, my hands and ears tell me to go with the Roland. The last time I spent serious lengths of time with a digital piano was 10 years ago in high school and they were purely practice instruments to tolerate....but the DP-90s and I'm sure several other digitals of today, produce an experience that for me is just jaw-dropping. I do indeed feel that the DP-90S gave me an experience that's closer to a competition concert grand in good shape than even a top tier upright.

As to switching and adjusting between the DP-90S and the other acoustic instruments I'll be met with for competitions and concerts, this adjustment would happen even if I had a consumer grade acoustic upright or grand. No two pianos are alike, and part of a pianist's bane of existence is having to try and make something magical happen on a variety of instruments in a variety of halls, that all often require very different approaches. Sometimes the Steinway or other concert instrument you'll get for a concert or a competition might have the heaviest action or the harshest tone and you'll just be glad to get through your program, never mind making magic happen. The only way around this dilemma I think we shall share, is having the wealth and success to move your ideal concert grand from your home to every performance you're ever going to have....and that's just not in my cards smile

In any event, thank you all again for your advice and thoughts and helping me come to a decision. Postings will follow when the deed is done and I have a new addition to my living room. smile


Schimmel C126
Bach, Goldberg Variations, BWV 988
Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2131080 08/11/13 01:49 AM
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"Swoon" "Jaw dropping". . . I`ve never heard those terms describe a digital before. This instrument is getting more attractive by the hour . .


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Re: Roland DP-90S Or A Real Acoustic Piano [Re: KlavierLiebhaber] #2131085 08/11/13 02:10 AM
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I really gotta try this DP90S.

smile



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