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Hiya guys,

What would offer the closest acoustic experience if they were both high end? The ca97 costs 5k aud while the vpc-1 is about only 3k aud and one could throw in the massive ivory ii sample and a pair of nice headphones

Your thoughts thanks guys smile

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I take it you're on a budget? The VPC1 is great. So is the CA97. If you are on a budget and comfortable with using software and not having a nice looking cabinet (unless you build one), then the VPC1 is hard to beat. You may want to compare ivory with pianoteq and True Keys Ravenscroft and any other number of great virtual pianos out there. You don't have to necessarily break the bank with them.


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VPC1 is enough great for advanced player. Grand feel II is better but buying CA series just for a bit better action is no point for me. Much more reasonable could be to buy another one virtual piano, like Synthogy Ivory II, Hammersmith piano or Vienna Imperial.

Last edited by rychubil; 05/07/16 02:59 PM.

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Originally Posted by lamadoo
Hiya guys,

What would offer the closest acoustic experience if they were both high end? The ca97 costs 5k aud while the vpc-1 is about only 3k aud and one could throw in the massive ivory ii sample and a pair of nice headphones

Your thoughts thanks guys smile


The acoustic experience isnt quantifiable. Just go into your piano shop, and play all the acoustics there. Would you be happy with them all? I think not. Pick a good one, tell us what it is, then try out the digitals there. . .

Then you will be able to stop us all arguing over the longest running feud in musical history. . .and we might get round to actually playing the bloody things help haha

Have fun!


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Originally Posted by lamadoo
Hiya guys,

What would offer the closest acoustic experience if they were both high end? The ca97 costs 5k aud while the vpc-1 is about only 3k aud and one could throw in the massive ivory ii sample and a pair of nice headphones


High end acoustic v high end digital? grin

I've just returned from downtown, where I'd booked a studio with a Fazioli F156 (the smallest and cheapest Fazioli) to make a few recordings.

Prior to that, I took the opportunity to visit a DP store, where I played on a few high end digitals (including the CA97) to warm up.

Playing the Fazioli soon after was like the difference between night and day. I got lost in the music, and the sound and the responsiveness of the instrument to my touch, the tonal variety and range of dynamics, and the sheer joy of playing on the little acoustic grand (barely bigger than a "baby grand") that none of the digitals came anywhere close to giving me..........


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Originally Posted by bennevis
....
I've just returned from downtown, where I'd booked a studio with a Fazioli F156 (the smallest and cheapest Fazioli) to make a few recordings.

.....

Playing the Fazioli soon after was like the difference between night and day. I got lost in the music, and the sound and the responsiveness of the instrument to my touch, the tonal variety and range of dynamics, and the sheer joy of playing on the little acoustic grand (barely bigger than a "baby grand") that none of the digitals came anywhere close to giving me..........


And just imagine if you were playing a full-sized Steinway, Yamaha, Shigeru Kawai, Bosendorfer, Bechstein, or Fazioli grand...

Yeah, nothing can compare to the touch, feel, sound, and bathed in the sensations feeling of playing a decent real acoustic piano.

But still, I get joy from my digitals and can do things with them that I could never do with an AP. So they remain apples and oranges for me.


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Originally Posted by lamadoo
Hiya guys,

What would offer the closest acoustic experience if they were both high end? The ca97 costs 5k aud while the vpc-1 is about only 3k aud and one could throw in the massive ivory ii sample and a pair of nice headphones

Your thoughts thanks guys smile


The midi keyboard route is the one I chose over 30 years ago and I have NO regrets.
Not even that my KX-88 has lasted SO well that I haven't had any good excuse to side-grade it.
(doubtful that there is an UP-grade, there are known DOWN-grades).

CA97 is a current "package" that will remain what it is, i.e. the only "up-grade" path is replacement - or a similar path to what you could take with a midi keyboard, in which case the "case" represents waste.
It also has the limitation of a "soundboard", which has some market appeal - except that it is barely the soundboard of a spinet, if it were the board of a 9ft grand, or even a 7ft it could be a worthwhile feature - but it is tiny.

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I feel it depends what your expectations and intended usage are.
If you expect to play serious piano repertoire, something with a good weighted action is necessary. The VPC1 is a good example but you have to test the action to see if you like it.
If you'll certainly take the VST route, then the rest of the instrument (case, speakers, internal sounds) is redundant, indeed, but still OK to have.
Personally I like the form-factor of a console piano (HP-504 in my case), although I will probably end up using VSTs exclusively. I like the look of it, the sliding keycover, the proper height of the keys placed on the sturdy stand that is the piano and the good pedals in their proper place. Also like that I can place the studio monitors (I know it's not the ideal placement) and an LCD for sheet music on top of the piano.
Of course, all the things I like can easily be achieved with a controller as well, but the price wasn't much different from the VPC1 in my case and personally I liked this action better, although many may argue otherwise and they wouldn't be wrong.

Short answer to the original question: acoustic is not digital and viceversa. But a high end digital or DP+ VST combo will be better on some aspects than an acoustic that would be in the same price range. And they have many other advantages as well.

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Much thanks for your feedback guys, really appreciated.

This is great news as I will now plan to budget for the VPC-1 as its much more affordable, future-proof and fits my needs.

Just one last question please, do you think the ivory II samples are better than the in-built samples of the ca-97 ? (your personnel input)

Its great like you say i can always upgrade VST plugins when they improve as well instead of buying a new digital piano.. wow smile

Its a dream to own a quality grand piano but for now we have to make do hehe

Last edited by lamadoo; 05/08/16 03:28 AM.
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Ivory II samples are definitely better than any in-built samples of DP's. The same thing with the CA97.


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Originally Posted by rychubil
Ivory II samples are definitely better than any in-built samples of DP's. The same thing with the CA97.

But built-in samples are usually very well adapted to the built-in action.


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Originally Posted by JoeT
But built-in samples are usually very well adapted to the built-in action.


Says who?

Action is action and sound is sound, and one can be great, the other not-so, and visa versa.


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While I haven't agreed with some other of Joe's opinions, he's spot on on this one.
Says piano manufacturers. When they make a new model, they spend countless hours working on the velocity curve and matching it to the internal sound. This is done by experts with way more experience than most users and they spend large amounts of time to ensure response consistency and a realistic response.
While you can adjust the velocity curves in the vst, some vsts have limited adjustment options and depending on the particular vst and the action with which it's coupled, it might be quite hard to achieve a natural response in some cases. And you can use external plugins to alter the velocity curve, but even so, it can be quite hard at times and can affect the piano playing experience generally speaking.
I suppose that's why one of the features that are really appreciated in case of the VPC1 are the custom velocity curves for several popular VSTs and the ability to modify and save your own curves internally.

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Originally Posted by R_B

Not even that my KX-88 has lasted SO well that I haven't had any good excuse to side-grade it.
(doubtful that there is an UP-grade, there are known DOWN-grades).


Yeah - they don't make 'em like that anymore. Probably one of the bets musical investments of the 80s.

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Agreed.
Originally Posted by petes1
Originally Posted by JoeT
But built-in samples are usually very well adapted to the built-in action.

Says who? Action is action and sound is sound, and one can be great, the other not-so, and visa versa.
I've spent countless minutes adjusting the velocity curves. I use a program called Velocity Curve. It sits "in front" of Kontakt. I have three curves defined, and I can switch and choose among them. It's easy to use, and it's free.


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