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So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
#2641584 05/09/17 01:56 AM
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First of all, hello from Indianapolis, IN.
Background - I have been a professional entertainer/rock 'n' roll piano player for over 20 years - spending most of it in dueling piano shows.

I have several CP33's that I use for these piano shows that are wearing out. I've been set on replacing them with two CP4's (or at least one for my solo shows), but bumped into the new MX88 and had some questions.

Has anybody else played one of these?

Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2641665 05/09/17 09:38 AM
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Welcome to the forum!

I haven't played the MX88 specifically, but it does contain Yamaha's low-end action, GHS. The CP4 is much, much better. Coming from CP33, I think the CP4 would be a decent upgrade, but you'll have to try them out yourself to see the difference.

You may also want to try the Roland FP-90 and Kawai MP7.

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Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2641670 05/09/17 09:49 AM
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The price point and features of the MX88 makes it competitive with Roland DS88 and Casio PX-5S. Features wise if you don't need internal speakers and other home keyboard bells and whistles - it's actually quite robust, integrates well as a controller with Music Production software on Mac and PC (which it is bundled with). It's a pretty darn good pick at its price point.

The MOXF8 is a much more flexible professional instrument in sound set, flash ram for user samples, splits/layers and master controller features. More in common with the Motif and S90 lines. But it lacks the higher end action in the CP4.

Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2641681 05/09/17 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Tod Baldwin
I have several CP33's that I use for these piano shows that are wearing out. I've been set on replacing them with two CP4's (or at least one for my solo shows), but bumped into the new MX88 and had some questions.

Has anybody else played one of these?

Do you have any questions besides whether anyone has played one? ;-)

Sonically, the MX88 is based on the earlier MX49/MX61, it is basically a subset of what was in the Motif XS/MOX8. As far as I know, the piano sounds of all these models are identical.

If you liked the CP33 action, you'll find a similar action in the P255 and the CP40. Most people feel that the action in the CP4 is a step up, and the GHS action in the MX88 (and P45, P115, MOXF8) is a step down, but there is always some subjectivity to these things.


Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2641736 05/09/17 01:35 PM
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I am actually looking at the MX88 myself. Mainly as a new midi controller in my studio. I was looking at the MOXF8 but I don't think I will use any of the extra features, since I will mainly be controlling VSTs and using Logic for the Sequencing.

That CP4 keyboard is nice. If I were using this as my main paino I might go for it for the better action, but the MX88 being 1/2 the price and the DAW integration fits what I am looking for better (And I have my LX17 for my 'main' piano).

IF the MX88 action is close to what an S80 action is, I'll be happy with it.

Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2641846 05/09/17 08:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Tod Baldwin
I have several CP33's that I use for these piano shows that are wearing out. I've been set on replacing them with two CP4's (or at least one for my solo shows), but bumped into the new MX88 and had some questions.


As anotherscott noted, the MX88's GHS action is technically a step down in quality/realism from the GH action that you're used to playing on the CP33. Given the choice I would opt for the CP4, which will feel and sound far better than both your current CP33 and the new MX88.

Cheers,
James
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Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 & occasional rare groove player.

"I agree that the User Manual is very good." - arc7urus, March 2019
Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2641883 05/09/17 10:37 PM
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My fear is that the action of the MX88 is the same as the MOX8, which is a major step down from the CP.
When I was working at a large dueling piano company ('nuff said) we had cp33's in all of the clubs.
They replaced the CP33's with MOX8's so that the players could have more sounds to play with.

It's worth noting that these keyboards are played hard 4 or 5 nights a weeks, so it was a good test of durability for these new units.

In the end, the MOX8's were all damaged, broken, or usable after about 6 months of playing because the actions couldn't handle the abuse or heavy use.
It is also worth mentioning that the piano sound on the MOX8 was sub-par compared to the CP. It sounded like a toy in the PA.

My fear is that they put the same action in the MX88, which seems to be the case from what you guys are saying.

It seems that investing in the CP4 or CP40 is a no-brainer.

Thanks for your input.


Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2641979 05/10/17 07:51 AM
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Yes, as I mentioned earlier, the MX88 will have the same kind of action and the same piano sound as the MOX8. So based on your experience with the MOX8, you would presumably not be happy with it.

Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2642102 05/10/17 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Tod Baldwin
My fear is that the action of the MX88 is the same as the MOX8, which is a major step down from the CP.
When I was working at a large dueling piano company ('nuff said) we had cp33's in all of the clubs.
They replaced the CP33's with MOX8's so that the players could have more sounds to play with.

It's worth noting that these keyboards are played hard 4 or 5 nights a weeks, so it was a good test of durability for these new units.

In the end, the MOX8's were all damaged, broken, or usable after about 6 months of playing because the actions couldn't handle the abuse or heavy use.
It is also worth mentioning that the piano sound on the MOX8 was sub-par compared to the CP. It sounded like a toy in the PA.

My fear is that they put the same action in the MX88, which seems to be the case from what you guys are saying.

It seems that investing in the CP4 or CP40 is a no-brainer.

Thanks for your input.



It is exactly the same action as the mox or moxf 8.. which makes it a no go for almost everyons..

Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2642145 05/10/17 04:43 PM
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Definitely build as a home keyboard. There is a big difference in quality between home keyboards and stage pianos. In my opinion home keyboard is absolutely no go for any form of gigging. It can't withstand the "elements"...


Casio PX-860, Roland Fantom G, Kurzweil PC1X, Korg Micro X
Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
oscar1 #2642170 05/10/17 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by oscar1
Definitely build as a home keyboard. There is a big difference in quality between home keyboards and stage pianos. In my opinion home keyboard is absolutely no go for any form of gigging. It can't withstand the "elements"...

Are you talking about the MX88?

Do you consider your Roland FA-08 a gigging board?

Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2642203 05/10/17 07:46 PM
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I used to do a lot of mega music festivals as a tech for big names so that may be my bias against home equipment. Plastic things would physically break very quickly on tours, knobs, pitch bend sticks, connectors etc... but to be honest on big music venues someone else is handling your equipment and that someone else may been working already for 10 hours straight. Things may be different for small gigs where you take care of your gear and not toss things around because you have 20 min to change the set...

Last edited by oscar1; 05/10/17 07:48 PM.

Casio PX-860, Roland Fantom G, Kurzweil PC1X, Korg Micro X
Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2642219 05/10/17 08:59 PM
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That's fair. Touring acts' gear goes through a lot. But for the typical self employed pianist/keyboard player that handles their own in and out and uses their keyboard for say under 100 gigs a year - a lighter weight keyboard with a piano-like action is appreciated. And if made well, will last for a number of years, and when it goes it gets replaced as a business expense.

Some areas that they shouldn't cut corners...
The action.
Connectors - good jacks - and not just on the audio outs, but on the power supply too.
They don't need balanced XLR outs, I know I keep a direct box in my bag, and sound guys do too.
The power supply doesn't need to be internal if they give you a decently made power supply.
End caps - these should be able to withstand a bump or nick.

The CP4 is hard to beat. I always have high hopes that Kawai will take it on with an update to the MP7. The engineers have to get that weight down without making it cheap stuff and cutting the wrong corners. The price is already quite competitive to the CP4.

Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
ElmerJFudd #2642231 05/10/17 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
The [MP7] price is already quite competitive to the CP4.


In Europe, the CP4 is €2000 while the MP7 is €1490.

Kind regards,
James
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Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 & occasional rare groove player.

"I agree that the User Manual is very good." - arc7urus, March 2019
Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Tod Baldwin #2657109 06/28/17 05:14 AM
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I had a quick visit to Copenhagen's prime DP store the other day. Almost every piano on the market was there...
Anyway I played the MX88 and was pretty surprised about how good it was. The main piano sounded great and the action was very pleasant and quite quiet too. It felt sturdy for it's weight and I could really see myself getting one as I'm pretty sick of schlepping my RD800 around. Love the fact that they placed the mod wheel above the lower keys. Really gives it a smaller footprint onstage. Downside is that there are only very limited piano editing functions. Something that's hard to miss if you're used to having that.

The competitor, Roland DS88, was sitting next to the Yamaha and while the main piano patch are not SuperNatural is sounded quite nice. I preffered the Yamaha action and overall size over the Roland.


Roland RD800, EV ZXA-1.
Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
ElmerJFudd #2657123 06/28/17 06:13 AM
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Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
That's fair. Touring acts' gear goes through a lot. But for the typical self employed pianist/keyboard player that handles their own in and out and uses their keyboard for say under 100 gigs a year - a lighter weight keyboard with a piano-like action is appreciated. And if made well, will last for a number of years, and when it goes it gets replaced as a business expense.

Some areas that they shouldn't cut corners...
The action.
Connectors - good jacks - and not just on the audio outs, but on the power supply too.
They don't need balanced XLR outs, I know I keep a direct box in my bag, and sound guys do too.
The power supply doesn't need to be internal if they give you a decently made power supply.
End caps - these should be able to withstand a bump or nick.

The CP4 is hard to beat. I always have high hopes that Kawai will take it on with an update to the MP7. The engineers have to get that weight down without making it cheap stuff and cutting the wrong corners. The price is already quite competitive to the CP4.


I've heard that many professional gigging pianists use Kurzweil: perhaps because they are v. heavy duty and last well on tour.


Instruments: Current - Kawai MP7SE; Past - Kawai MP7, Yamaha PSR7000
Software: Sibelius 7; Neuratron Photoscore Pro 8
Stand: K&M 18953 Table-style Stage Piano Stand
Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
thomsurf #2657169 06/28/17 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by thomsurf
The competitor, Roland DS88, was sitting next to the Yamaha and while the main piano patch are not SuperNatural is sounded quite nice. I preffered the Yamaha action and overall size over the Roland.

I haven't had a chance to play the MX88 or DS88, though I've played some of their similar boards... I think I'd agree with you that the Yamaha wins for action (not the highest bar) and definitely has the better size/weight, and I think I'd prefer its sounds overall, though the Roland has a lot more features.

Re: So, I played a Yamaha MX88 today
Doug M. #2657170 06/28/17 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug M.
[I've heard that many professional gigging pianists use Kurzweil: perhaps because they are v. heavy duty and last well on tour.

I think Kurzweil became widely used because, for a while, they offered notably better piano sounds than the competition. And unlike some of us, most pros don't keep changing their gear just because something arguably a little better comes out. ;-)


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