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Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: Piano World] #2714044
02/13/18 03:48 PM
02/13/18 03:48 PM
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Thanks, Frank.


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Kawai Novus NV10
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Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: JoBert] #2714047
02/13/18 03:58 PM
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Tom, I fear that I cannot give you a definitive answer. I have no experience with the CS11. People here in the forum said that it sounds even better than the CA97 because of the different cabinet and the different speaker placement. So speaker wise, an upgrade probably doesn't make sense.
It also already has a very nice cabinet (which was a factor for me when I upgraded from the CA97), so that's another item where an upgrade does not make sense.

Which leaves the new pianist mode sound engine and, of course, the action.

With both of these, you will notice a difference, even as an intermediate player. Yes, to me the new sound is improved, and yes the action definitely feels different (I imagine "better"). But if this is worth the upgrade price to you, that's a question that only you can answer - by trying the nv10 yourself.

Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: JoBert] #2714051
02/13/18 04:11 PM
02/13/18 04:11 PM
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Thanks, JoBert. I actually upgraded from the CA97 to the CS11 for the cabinet. And I do think the cabinet makes a difference in the overall playing experience. So I am satisfied with the upgrade, as I certainly didn't expect the NV10 to come out so soon. I should spend more time on this forum. Anyway, I am older and retired, and this is now my hobby, so a little more $$ will not impact my decision. I will be playing on it soon as the dealer here said they are in the warehouse and he will have his floor model next week.

I am looking forward to seeing you on YouTube playing the NV10.


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Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: JoBert] #2714066
02/13/18 04:59 PM
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Originally Posted by TomLC
So my question is: if cost is not an issue, would you guys ( Gombresser, JoBert, Mabraman) upgrade from a CS11 to the Novis NV10? I have only had the CS11 about 9 months. (And the trade in value will be pretty low. Maybe $3000 if I am lucky. That means the NV10 will put me out about another $9,000 plus.) But regardless of that, is it a better piano for an intermediate player? It seems that the better action will be better to learn with. However the action of the CS11 is really good. I might not even notice the difference. Also, is the sound better without the soundboard? (With or without headphones?)


Well, if cost is NO object, I would upgrade in a heartbeat. After all, I upgraded from an MP11 (which has Grand Feel 1 action compared to your Grand Feel 2, but they are exceptionally similar actions) to the NV-10, pretty much solely for the action. I don't use the built-in speakers and I don't use the built-in sounds very much.

But the action alone was worth it for me. It's really what I wanted in a digital piano--a real acoustic grand action. For me, it's absolutely worth it.

As to the native sound, the Pianist mode is better, it's more complex and richer, but it's a subtle difference compared to the Sound Mode you already have in your CS11. And I can't speak to the sound board because I haven't really played a CS11 much.


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Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: Gombessa] #2714069
02/13/18 05:10 PM
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Gombessa, If the action is that much different, and better, I will follow your lead.


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Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: TomLC] #2714084
02/13/18 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by TomLC
Gombessa, If the action is that much different, and better, I will follow your lead.


The action absolutely feels different. I don't think any pianist will have trouble telling the Millennium III apart from the Grand Feel 2 in a blind test.

But is the extra cost worth it for you? I do hesitate to say it'll be better for practice or will make you a better pianist. Maybe it will, but I'm not qualified to say. And the Grand Feel was the first digital action I used that let me seamlessly transition from digital to acoustic grand without changing technique or dynamics (so IMO the Kawai wooden key digital actions are simply great).

But having played acoustic actions regularly, I just knew what I wanted, and the Novus fit the bill for me. I'm not using it with the impression that it'll make me better, I just know that I like it better.


Yamaha P-85, P-105, CP50 || Kawai NV-10, MP11
Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: Gombessa] #2714115
02/13/18 07:57 PM
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Understood. I may not even like it. We'll see when I finally get to try it. I have played a Yamaha Avant Grand and I liked it a lot. Not the sound as much as a CA97 or a CS11 though. If it was updated, I would look at that also.


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Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: Gombessa] #2714145
02/13/18 11:06 PM
02/13/18 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Gombessa
[quote=TomLC]I do hesitate to say it'll be better for practice or will make you a better pianist...the Grand Feel was the first digital action I used that let me seamlessly transition from digital to acoustic grand without changing technique or dynamics (so IMO the Kawai wooden key digital actions are simply great).



I have gone through an interesting transition on this. I used to be a huge piano snob, blaming the piano on my inability to play well. "Oh, this action is not regulated properly," or "This digital piano just doesn't repeat the same way that an acoustic grand does." That kind of thing.

I own a Kawai CA51. When I bought it, I thought it was the best action in my price range, but I really didn't like the sound. I bought it anyway due to the action (I already own an acoustic grand as well). At first, I felt I could not play certain things on it and blamed the instrument, but eventually after hearing my friends play better than I could on it, I realized the problem was me and not the piano.

Fast forward a few years and due to a variety of circumstances, I went from practicing daily on Steinways to having this humble CA51 be my main instrument, with occasional practice on my lowly Chinese Hallet and Davis acoustic grand.

I feel in that time, I have grown significantly as a pianist and from a technique standpoint - all while using the CA51. Once I stopped blaming the piano, I got a lot better....probably not a coincidence! And my progress directly translates over to acoustic instruments. I have to believe, the Kawai wooden actions are good enough for 99% of pianists. Maybe 99.5%.

Right now, in all of my repertoire, I can honestly say there is only one passage that I can more reliably play on my acoustic grand at full tempo. It's the passage below from Brahms 2.

[Linked Image]

I feel that when I am really pushing the tempo, the Kawai action is too light to really keep up. And even in this case, I am pretty sure that with more finger independence in my left hand, I can overcome that and play it equally well on the CA51 and my acoustic. I am purchasing the Novus NV10 (provided a decent price) basically because I want to and for this .05% circumstance; not because I expect it to make me a better pianist.

Just my perspective, but I think a lot of us on these forums tend to get way too hung up on thinking our pianos limit our skill. I see the same thing when I instruct drivers for high performance racing schools; novice, intermediate, and even advanced level students always tend to think their cars are why they are not fast drivers, not realizing that a Formula 1 driver in a Honda Civic would be faster than them in a Ferrari.

Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: computerpro3] #2714155
02/14/18 02:09 AM
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Originally Posted by computerpro3
I feel in that time, I have grown significantly as a pianist and from a technique standpoint - all while using the CA51. Once I stopped blaming the piano, I got a lot better....probably not a coincidence! And my progress directly translates over to acoustic instruments. I have to believe, the Kawai wooden actions are good enough for 99% of pianists. Maybe 99.5%.

Just my perspective, but I think a lot of us on these forums tend to get way too hung up on thinking our pianos limit our skill. I see the same thing when I instruct drivers for high performance racing schools; novice, intermediate, and even advanced level students always tend to think their cars are why they are not fast drivers, not realizing that a Formula 1 driver in a Honda Civic would be faster than them in a Ferrari.


+1.

I am in complete agreement with this post and believe there is a huge culture of believing things will make us better when they don't. All I need is a better DP, or better phone, or better car, or better whatever. Things never make us better, and certainly the best action in the world hybrid or otherwise will not. I applaud Kawai for making improvements over time, which is necessary, but it also suck consumers into a needless ever upgrade cycle that does not really do anything for their skills except make them obsessed over specs.

I had a long discussion over DP actions with my very accomplished classical piano teacher. She had a Yamaha with GH action for night time practice, which was replaced by a Kawai VPC1. When I asked her when I would out grow something like the GH action as I move beyond RCM 7 or 8 into concert repertoire territory, she said, "basically never." The lowly GH action is already sufficient for all levels of repertoire, and she demonstrated by playing an insanely great rendition of the Chopin Ballade in Gm. https://soundcloud.com/rjpianist/chopin-ballade-no-1-in-g-minor-op-23

Then she said of course the VPC1 action feels better, though she had to remove the let-off thing from the VPC1, which is an option, because she said it is basically annoying and unnecessary. It's actually annoying but necessary in an acoustic, so for DP makers to reproduce this annoying effect is very ironic. Anyway, in terms of VPC1, the action is even better, but was it necessary for my progress, absolutely not. The piano does not make the pianist.

In the end, you will like what you're used to. The OP says as much. Since he doesn't own a grand piano and hasn't spent even 1000 hours on a grand piano, how would he know that the action from a tiny 5' Kawai GL10 (according to this thread) is any good? The fact is, all actions are fine except the really light ones. I used to have a 5'3" grand before outgrowing it. The actions in these small pianos are too light. I don't understand why Kawai is using such a small piano's action for the NV10. I would have used the action of at least the GX-3 / GX-5, if the GX-7 was not possible. The GL10 action is too small. Very few actions from any 5' grand (so called micro-grands) are any good, including the Yamaha GB1/GC1, Steinway S, Kawai GL10/30, the whole lot. The only exception is the Boesendorfer 155 because it has the same action as the Boesendorfer 200. Sure if you had to buy a small grand piano that's one thing, but a DP does not need much more space beyond the action enclosure unlike a real piano where the piano maker needed to move the strike point away from the rim. Boesendorfer solved that problem though.

I hope the information that the NV10 action is adapted from GL10 is incorrect because that would be bad. The AG actions are adapted from Yamaha C3 / C5, which are much bigger pianos with longer heavier actions. I find it hard to believe Kawai will come out with a product years later and choose to adapt the action from their cheapest entry level piano. Very disappointed.

Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: JoBert] #2714157
02/14/18 02:37 AM
02/14/18 02:37 AM
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8 Octaves, thank you for your post.

May I ask where it was stated that the NV10 keyboard action is adapted from the GL10?

I don't believe there has been any official statement from Kawai regarding this point.

Kind regards,
James
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Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: JoBert] #2714158
02/14/18 02:51 AM
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I believe all Kawai GX series and GL series use the same Millennium III Action. I think the only difference between GX and GL keyboards are key surfaces. And I think key lengths for GX and GL are the same no matter what piano size is (need confirm).

The smaller grand pianos have shorter strings and smaller soundboards (resulting in different sound characteristics such as dynamic ranges / velocity curves) and that's why you feel differently even if the action parts are the same.

Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: 8 Octaves] #2714159
02/14/18 02:58 AM
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Originally Posted by 8 Octaves
I hope the information that the NV10 action is adapted from GL10 is incorrect because that would be bad. The AG actions are adapted from Yamaha C3 / C5, which are much bigger pianos with longer heavier actions. I find it hard to believe Kawai will come out with a product years later and choose to adapt the action from their cheapest entry level piano. Very disappointed.


Yamaha AG actions are based on Yamaha C1 as per this source.- the smallest 5' 3" baby grand in C series.

I don't believe Kawai has said anything about which of Their GL or GX series piano NV10's action is based on. Kawai advertised that all their piano use 'extended length keys' - including the smallest GL-10. There does not seem to be authoritative information out there regarding the key length and pivot length for different grand pianos within Kawai's GL or GX series pianos.

Osho


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Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: Kenny Cheng] #2714169
02/14/18 03:43 AM
02/14/18 03:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Kenny Cheng
I think key lengths for GX and GL are the same no matter what piano size is (need confirm).


This is not correct. The key length typically increases with the length of the piano.

However, I'm afraid I am not aware of any (publicly available) Kawai materials that list the respective key lengths of each grand piano model.

Kind regards,
James
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Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: computerpro3] #2714173
02/14/18 04:28 AM
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I agree with computerpro3 and 8 Octaves in so far, that a better instrument does not make one a better musician. That expectation is there, nonetheless, at least subconsciously. I've had this twice now during the last 2+ years: First upgrading from the Yamaha P115 to the CA97 (a substantial leap regarding the action), and now from the CA97 to the NV10 (still a leap, but not as substantial as the first one). Each time I knew of course that just getting the new instrument would not make me a better musician. Actually, this time around I even told myself so repeatedly before the NV10 arrived, to keep expectations down. But still, subconsciously, there's this feeling when you sit down at the new "better" instrument, that you somehow have now morphed into a Maestro. smile Only to then sheepishly realize that, well, no, you are still playing the same repertoire as before (with mostly the same mistakes!), and you did not suddenly learn the full set of Beethoven sonatas and you still don't play any Mozart piano concertos. grin

But, and that's an important but, the better instrument still makes quite a difference, in two factors that are quite important to me:

The first factor is enjoyment and satisfaction. I enjoyed playing the CA97 with its soundboard and GFII action so much more than playing the P115 (usually with headphones, as the speaker sound is very bad). It was simply an incredible feeling, having this new instrument under my fingers, and that enjoyment stayed with me the whole two years. But still, now again with the NV10, there's again another increment in this enjoyment, for various reasons (the even better action being one of them).
And if the enjoyment grows, then, in my opinion, also the musicianship grows. So in a sense, I am a slightly (very slightly) better musician now, than I was before, or at least the road to becoming one is now a bit smoother.

The second factor is the purely technical. Each time I got an instrument with a better action, I definitely did notice an improvement in certain areas. I don't remember the details, but when going from the P115 to the CA97, I did have some passages that had always given me problems, that I could now play much more easily. And the same thing happened again now, with the switch to the NV10. I've already mentioned that I felt that fast runs and ornaments feel easier on the NV10. But for a concrete example, take Mozart's Fantasia in C minor, K. 475. I had played this piece many years ago (probably partially only, I don't remember exactly) and had recently, only a few weeks ago, started to work on it again, still with my CA97. I was very unsatisfied with the results. In the starting Adagio, when the Alberti bass starts in measure 6, with the melody notes "dotted" above that background by the right hand in a delicate "p", I could not manage to play that to my satisfaction (although I didn't practice it seriously either). Somehow the bass always drowned out my melody, and I had to play that melody quite indelicately at mf to have it stand out from the bass. With the NV10, I immediately managed to play that much better, on my first try. Suddenly I could keep the bass at a nice low background drone with the p melody above. That was definitely a function of the new instrument. I'm not sure if it was the new action alone, or the new pianist mode, or the different speaker system, or a combination of those, but the effect was definitely there.
So yes, one can certainly manage to learn most repertoire even on a "lesser" instrument (with a Kaway GFII or even a Yamaha GH action), but it just takes more effort to do so. Yes, I could probably have learned to play those measures of the Fantasia properly even on my CA97, but learning this would have required a lot of extra practice. With the NV10, it got better by a good increment all by itself, so I can now spend this extra practice time on other issues (and there are quite a few for me in that piece wink).

And that last item brings me back to the enjoyment factor: If I have to practice less to get the same achievement, or if I can achieve more with the same practice effort, then this brings me more enjoyment at the instrument. I'm a hobby pianist who almost exclusively plays on his own instrument, at home. I don't do gigs or recitals or whatever, where I can encounter all kinds of different pianos where it would be an advantage if I could adapt quickly to them (and it therefore might be a good idea to not have too good an instrument as my practice instrument, so that if I encounter a bad instrument somewhere, it's not so much of a shock). I want to maximize my enjoyment when playing at home, and getting easier and faster results with the same practice effort is a big factor for that.

So I'm not asking "when will I outgrow the instrument I currently have, and where does it hinder me?", because for my CA97, the answer to that would be "I will never outgrow it, and it doesn't hinder me, it's me who needs to learn to work with the instrument".

Instead, I'm asking "will the new instrument increase my enjoyment when playing the piano?" and both times I switched pianos in the last years, the answer to that was an resounding "yes".

BTW, just for the fun of it, let's see how that would transfer to the world of acoustic pianos. Because I have noticed that my three pianos, P115, CA97 and NV10, have a progression both in price and "quality" that you can find correspondingly in the acoustic world - if you multiply the prices by 10. smile

The P115 was a decent entry-level digital at 600€, the CA97 a high quality digital at 3,000€ and the NV10 a first tier digital at 9,000€. Take this times ten and you get: A decent entry-level acoustic upright for 6,000€, a high quality acoustic grand for 30,000€ and a first tier acoustic grand for 90,000€ (talking new instruments, not used). All three of these instruments would be fine instruments in their class, and the argument that you could learn 95% of the repertoire even on the 6,000€ upright would probably also be true. But still, many pianists (even hobby pianists, but professionals even more so) that have the necessary money and living conditions upgrade to that 30,000€ grand at some point. And some, with even more disposable income, even go for that 90,000€ first tier grand. And I would not be surprised if they do this for similar reasons as I had for my upgrades in the digital world, i.e. mostly for the higher enjoyment that they can get out of the more expensive instruments (because of the way they look, feel, sound, respond, etc.).

So my advice would be: Always go for the best instrument you can afford, to maximize your enjoyment. But on the other hand, if you can not afford a certain "better" instrument that you are longing for, don't allow this to affect your enjoyment either. Remember that even with the instrument that you do have, you can find enjoyment, make fine music, and become a good musician.

Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: 8 Octaves] #2714178
02/14/18 04:57 AM
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@ 8 Octaves,

With respect, but your claim and statement, quote [...] "The only exception is the Boesendorfer 155 because it has the same action as the Boesendorfer 200." [...] is wrong!

It is true that there is still a brochure in print and download / PDF file in circulation, where on page 28 "Model 155 Mignon" is described that this model has the same key length which is used for the larger models 170-200.

This description is wrong.

On the basis of this description, which I assume that you refer exactly to this, I've had some phone calls with Bösendorfer about a year ago and asked why in that mentioned brochure and in addition on their website in the description of the models 170 and 185 is not (!) mentioned that these both models are equipped with the key length of the model 200? I went on to explain that with the statement in the brochure as well as on the website, the next larger models 170 and 185 would have a smaller (!) key length than the smallest BÖSENDORFER 155 model. That would be very unusual, say pure nonsense. Furthermore, I asked if this is more likely to be a "printing error", and the model 155 probably only incorporas the key length of the next larger model, the model 170.

After some confusion with my interlocutor and some consultation of this topic within the house in Vienna, it became true that the model 155 does not have the key length of the model 200, but "only" houses that of the model 170. Likewise, the models 170 and 185 do not have the key length of the model 200!
The web page was corrected accordingly. The statements on the website of Bösendorfer regarding this topic are correct now for about a year.


YAMAHA C7, YAMAHA Disklavier U1 Mark IIXG, YAMAHA NU1, YAMAHA Tyros 1, KAWAI MP10
Near future purchases: 2x KAWAI NOVUS NV ?? upright+grand (video shooting/rec.,rental), YAMAHA Genos (rec.,rental)
Distant future purchases (5 years): STUART & SONS Concert Grand 108 keys (video shooting/recording)
Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: 8 Octaves] #2714185
02/14/18 06:33 AM
02/14/18 06:33 AM
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Originally Posted by 8 Octaves
The GL10 action is too small. Very few actions from any 5' grand (so called micro-grands) are any good, including the Yamaha GB1/GC1, Steinway S, Kawai GL10/30, the whole lot. The only exception is the Boesendorfer 155 because it has the same action as the Boesendorfer 200. Sure if you had to buy a small grand piano that's one thing, but a DP does not need much more space beyond the action enclosure unlike a real piano where the piano maker needed to move the strike point away from the rim. Boesendorfer solved that problem though.


That the action keybed is GL10/30 based is speculation from people here based on marketing shots of said GL actions and similarities such as the key surfaces as well as the convienient existance of ATX versions of those two pianos, not 'information' per se.

I don't think bosendorfer particularly 'solved' any problem either. It's simply a design choice, you can have a longer keybed in a small grand if you want but you get shorter bass strings for any particular piano length as a consequenence, kawai have been making the same design choice with their smaller pianos in recent years hence the marketing blurb about longer keys.

As has been noted with tape measures further upthread, the key length on the novus is longer than the AGs

Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: akc42] #2714186
02/14/18 06:37 AM
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I am clearly blind. Thanks.

Still I'd be interested in actual measurements. And would love to be able to use any good DAC being fed with digital signal, esp. as good as the one advertised in NV10.

Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: JoBert] #2714199
02/14/18 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by 8 Octaves



The actions in these small pianos are too light. I don't understand why Kawai is using such a small piano's action for the NV10.


Huh. Maybe there is a personal perception issue here. But I played the NV10 against s number of new GLs, including the GL10 and GL30, as well as several 6-7ft GX Blaks and 6-7 ft SKs. IMO the actions never never heavier going up in size, and in fact they always seemed lighter to me. Same with Yamaha playing the C3 and C7, and of the pianos I've tried the 7ft and 9 ft Bosendorfers felt the lightest of the bunch.

I don't recall if you've had a chance to try the Novus, but if you're are worried that the action will be too light, I would definitely suggest giving it a try. IMO it's not at all among the lightest of acoustic grand actions I've tried (closer to the opposite actually).


Yamaha P-85, P-105, CP50 || Kawai NV-10, MP11
Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: JoBert] #2714205
02/14/18 09:20 AM
02/14/18 09:20 AM
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 3,672
Portugal
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toddy Offline
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toddy  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 3,672
Portugal
the actions never never heavier going up in size, and in fact they always seemed lighter to me

I agree with Gombessa. This is my experience, too. It stands to reason if you agree that quality and design get better as the size of the piano increases. The higher up the range, the lighter, is a general rule. The better the components and the design, the lighter and more regular the touch can be set. Although, against that practical factor is the physical one which is that a larger piano, producing more volume, will need more energy, force (weight) to achieve those volumes. But this may be offset by gains in the efficiency of the mechanism.

Whatever the reason, the heaviest, stodgiest actions are on cheap (smaller) pianos and the lighter, more responsive, on the more expensive (and larger) ones.


Roland HP 302 / Samson Graphite 49 / Akai EWI

Reaper / Native Instruments K9 ult / ESQL MOR2 Symph Orchestra & Choirs / Lucato & Parravicini , trumpets & saxes / Garritan CFX lite / Production Voices C7 & Steinway D compact

Focusrite Saffire 24 / W7, i7 4770, 16GB / MXL V67g / Yamaha HS7s / HD598
Re: Kawai Novus NV10 - Hands On [Re: toddy] #2714210
02/14/18 09:33 AM
02/14/18 09:33 AM
Joined: Jun 2017
Posts: 209
Taipei, Taiwan
K
Kenny Cheng Offline
Full Member
Kenny Cheng  Offline
Full Member
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Joined: Jun 2017
Posts: 209
Taipei, Taiwan
Originally Posted by toddy
the actions never never heavier going up in size, and in fact they always seemed lighter to me

I agree with Gombessa. This is my experience, too. It stands to reason if you agree that quality and design get better as the size of the piano increases. The higher up the range, the lighter, is a general rule. The better the components and the design, the lighter and more regular the touch can be set. Although, against that practical factor is the physical one which is that a larger piano, producing more volume, will need more energy, force (weight) to achieve those volumes. But this may be offset by gains in the efficiency of the mechanism.

Whatever the reason, the heaviest, stodgiest actions are on cheap (smaller) pianos and the lighter, more responsive, on the more expensive (and larger) ones.


Exactly, the larger piano of the same series normally easier to play soft but might need more force to play forte.

It depends on how you define “havey”.

In DP, you should be able to set the velocity curve to your preference.

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