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Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? #2838190
04/11/19 08:33 PM
04/11/19 08:33 PM
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vb321 Offline OP
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Apologies if this has been discussed. I searched the archives but couldn't find anything about this angle.

I'm fantasizing about upgrading my current DP setup. I would really only need a controller. A new VPC1 is listed pretty much everywhere online at $1850. With a decent stand, the total would come very close to the price of a CA48 ($2099). Which is interesting because about the same money would get me a newer GFC action, better (?) pedals, a nice-looking cabinet, and even onboard sound and speakers (which I personally don't really need).

I guess it's no use asking what was Kawai thinking. So then the question is, other than needing a slab and not a cabinet, is there a reason to consider a VPC1 these days?

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Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838201
04/11/19 09:12 PM
04/11/19 09:12 PM
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To your question: Is there a reason to consider a VPC1 these days? ... If you think the CA48 is a better deal, then go for it.

I don't keep up with all of the actions ... so I ask: Is the CA48 action better than that of the VPC? If so, and if you don't need the "portability" of the VPC, then the CA48 is the obvious choice.

But ... have you given other pianos a try? Yamaha has pianos in this price range. I've not tried them, but perhaps you should.

Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838203
04/11/19 09:19 PM
04/11/19 09:19 PM
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Jethro Online content
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Originally Posted by vb321
Apologies if this has been discussed. I searched the archives but couldn't find anything about this angle.

I'm fantasizing about upgrading my current DP setup. I would really only need a controller. A new VPC1 is listed pretty much everywhere online at $1850. With a decent stand, the total would come very close to the price of a CA48 ($2099). Which is interesting because about the same money would get me a newer GFC action, better (?) pedals, a nice-looking cabinet, and even onboard sound and speakers (which I personally don't really need).

I guess it's no use asking what was Kawai thinking. So then the question is, other than needing a slab and not a cabinet, is there a reason to consider a VPC1 these days?


I actually considered this piano prior to purchasing the VPC-1. As I'm moving into an apartment the smaller size was taken into consideration. Can move it myself and not break my back. Also the VPC1 may take up smaller space especially if using only headphones. I decided on early that Pianoteq 6 would be the software (along with both the Ravenscroft app/software more for kicks) I would primarily use for serious practice. I liked the professionally and collaboratively designed velocity curves embedded into the hardware of the VPC-1 which reduces the chance of introducing latency within the digital chain and the peace of mind that these are the optimal velocity curves approved by the engineering teams of both products. I'm basically assured that the VPC-1 is as close to an ideal match with Pianoteq 6(or any of the other VST packages) in a relatively low cost, slim design, elegant package. Also if you are not aware the CA48's onboard sounds are limited to 192 note polyphony, but that might not effect most pianists. I also liked that fact that I can purchase a stable stand that I can place the key bed at the proper height as an acoustic grand. (K&M imported from Germany). I liked the fact that bought something that provides me only with what I need and nothing more in a beautiful uncluttered design.

There's nothing like the VPC-1 on the market today. It's primary designation is as the ultimate VST PIANO controller with onboard editable velocity curves along with the professionally designed ones in a relatively compact form. Most users and reviewers have claimed that the action difference between the RM3, GF, GF2, compact GF is barely perceptible. What is universally accepted is that any of Kawai today sporting those actions is one of the best actions you will find on DP today.

Did I mention that the VPC-1 is simply a gorgeous slab of electronics. It's like someone took a knife and carved out the keyboard section of my satin Kawai grand and put on display. I feel at home with this keyboard.

Last edited by Jethro; 04/11/19 09:28 PM.

Shigeru Kawai SK2 (2019), Kawai RX-2 (2007), Young Chang (1982), Kawai VPC-1 (2019), Yamaha P80 (2001), Korg C-50 (1995) , Roland Juno 1 (1988), Korg Poly 61 (1986), Lowrey Symphonic Holiday (1975)
Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838209
04/11/19 09:52 PM
04/11/19 09:52 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
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Europe
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Originally Posted by vb321
and even onboard sound and speakers (which I personally don't really need).

You're sure you might not occassionally like a Kawai sample?

All in one digital pianos sounding on their own are often underestimated.


Yamaha P-515 | Kawai ES100 | Steinberg UR22 | Sony MDR-7506
Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838248
04/12/19 01:54 AM
04/12/19 01:54 AM
Joined: Jul 2012
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Northern England.
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Connectivity is the main problem for the CA48. I quite liked the thing. But I'd prefer the CA37 which sounds nicer and has all the bits. Both actions were good. I never noticed the wooden action other than it was . . nice enough, probably a tad better than my own (FP50) and therefore not quite time to change.


"I am not a man. I am a free number"

"[Linked Image]"
Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838258
04/12/19 03:06 AM
04/12/19 03:06 AM
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Cheshire, UK
Cheshire Chris Offline
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You absolutely do NOT need to spend $250 on a stand! A simple X-stand is perfectly acceptable for a slab piano; the shop I bought my P-515 from gave me one free of charge.


Chris

Yamaha P-515, Yamaha Reface CP.
Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838264
04/12/19 03:44 AM
04/12/19 03:44 AM
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FlexHank Offline
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I liked the CA48 GFC action, and a lot is built in for the price. Theoretically the GFC is a step up from RM3 Grand, so probably a bit lighter (but I was not able to test the Vpc1, only mp11se). You can change the velocity settings in CA48, so make it work with Pianoteq, but you also have the choice to use the CA48 internal sound and speakers. I considered the CA48 until they gave me almost the same price for a mp11se. Do check the online discount dealers, there is a lot possible if you talk to them. Their listed price is not their final price.

Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838265
04/12/19 03:45 AM
04/12/19 03:45 AM
Joined: Sep 2007
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Hamamatsu, Japan
Kawai James Offline
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Chris, don't your legs/kness get trapped though?

A good table stand with proper leg clearance is far more comfortable, and probably a fair bit more stable.

James
x


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: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: Kawai James] #2838269
04/12/19 03:53 AM
04/12/19 03:53 AM
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Posts: 374
Cheshire, UK
Cheshire Chris Offline
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Originally Posted by Kawai James
Chris, don't your legs/kness get trapped though?

A good table stand with proper leg clearance is far more comfortable, and probably a fair bit more stable.

James
x


I find it absolutely fine, James. It's rock solid and no, it doesn't get in the way of my knees. In a normal piano-playing sitting position there's a gap of several inches between my knees and the frame of the stand.


Chris

Yamaha P-515, Yamaha Reface CP.
Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: Cheshire Chris] #2838278
04/12/19 05:17 AM
04/12/19 05:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Cheshire Chris
You absolutely do NOT need to spend $250 on a stand! A simple X-stand is perfectly acceptable for a slab piano; the shop I bought my P-515 from gave me one free of charge.


I disagree here, based on my experience

An X stand is by definition unstable, there is allways some movement, thats something i and many other piano players really dislike..

So if you get a cheap stabd, arleast get a table stand for stabillity

Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838279
04/12/19 05:24 AM
04/12/19 05:24 AM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 9,473
Raleigh, North Carolina
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I once saw an X stand at Guitar Center. Not a good choice. Wobbly. No place for your legs. Just say no. The Z stands are much better. Spend the money.

Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: Bachus] #2838281
04/12/19 05:40 AM
04/12/19 05:40 AM
Joined: Mar 2019
Posts: 374
Cheshire, UK
Cheshire Chris Offline
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Originally Posted by Bachus


I disagree here, based on my experience

An X stand is by definition unstable, there is allways some movement, thats something i and many other piano players really dislike..

So if you get a cheap stabd, arleast get a table stand for stabillity


Double-braced X-stands (ie two "X's" joined by cross-members) don't wobble - they're completely rigid. But these things are very much a matter of personal preference - get whatever is to your liking. There's a huge range of different stand types available. The important thing is that you're happy with it. My point still stands, though - there's absolutely need to spend $250! A good quality Z-stand costs about £60-70 ($80-100).


Chris

Yamaha P-515, Yamaha Reface CP.
Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838288
04/12/19 06:12 AM
04/12/19 06:12 AM
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Jorp Porp Offline
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I would like to echo this. I spent 85 dollars on an OnStage Z stand for my VPC1 and it is rock solid.

Also - No regrets on the VPC1. It is an absolute beauty of an instrument.

Last edited by Jorp Porp; 04/12/19 06:13 AM.
Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838294
04/12/19 06:33 AM
04/12/19 06:33 AM
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The CA48 and VPC1 share a brand but are very different beasts in pretty much every other respect. The action is significantly different, I'd certainly say try the VPC1 before purchasing.

If the console look isn't a requirement (and if you're considering a VPC1 then it probably isn't), you should consider the higher end slab pianos P515, ES8, FP90. Whilst the action on the ES8 is arguably a lesser action than that on a CA48 the Yamaha P515 has the action from a more expensive console piano.

For many having the convenience of some onboard sound capability is more relevant than having the absolutely flexibility of control that the VPC1 offers. I didn't want a console but if I had in that price range I think it would have been between a CA48 which I like a lot and the Yamaha P515 (which with the optional wooden stand and pedals isn't a million miles from the console look).

Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838445
04/12/19 02:39 PM
04/12/19 02:39 PM
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SF Bay Area
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vb321 Offline OP
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Thank you everyone for the comments, lots of interesting points.

@JoeT, I didn't mean to disparage built-in piano sounds. It's just that I already have a VST setup, so anything beyond a pure controller would be just a bonus. I'm surprised after checking online prices in Europe that not only stuff is far less expensive than here in the US, but there is a more meaninful price differential between VPC1 and CA48. At thomann.de it's 25%, which is more in line with what I would expect for (entry-level) built-in sounds, speakers, and a cabinet.

I'll certainly try the actions, and will certainly include a P-515 into consideration. Right now I'm more at information gathering/fantasizing stage, with no real pressure to make a move soon. I have a very decent acoustic upright (a Yamaha UX) for when the kids are not sleeping. The problem is them not sleeping makes it far less likely for me to get a chance to play it. smile So for quiet hours I have an old Roland FP-5 (remember those?). The onboard sound is pretty horrible, and I use it as just a controller. The action is not as bad as the sound, and probably not limiting for my skill level, but still makes me wish for something feeling more like the real thing. I just need to practice that sales pitch in front of a mirror, "But honey, we need a new digital piano because...".

Last edited by vb321; 04/12/19 02:40 PM.
Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838456
04/12/19 03:09 PM
04/12/19 03:09 PM
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深水埗區
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US prices are quite high for most products and services. For the Kawai VPC-1:

Thomann sells at £1,118 (including 20% VAT), so that is £932 before taxes ($1,218).

Musicians Friend sells VPC1 (pre-tax) at $1,849 .

Pretax price is a staggering 50% higher in the US (including free shipping within the continent).

Post-sales tax price is about 40% higher in the US. (including free shipping within the continent). For example, Los Angeles sales tax rate is about 10% so ($1849*1.1 = $2034) (£1,118*1.31 = $1461)

Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838474
04/12/19 04:23 PM
04/12/19 04:23 PM
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vb321 Offline OP
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No kidding. I can put a VPC1 into the shopping basket at Thomann's US site (that must be quite a shopping basket), and it shows $1256 including shipping. But it also shows an apology for Kawai preventing them from shipping it to the US. Interestingly, it could be shipped to Canada...

Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838491
04/12/19 05:10 PM
04/12/19 05:10 PM
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US customers also enjoy inferior warranty coverage.

US - 3 Years Parts and 1 Year Labor
http://kawaius.com/product/vpc1/
http://kawaius.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/MP-Series-and-VPC1-Warranty.pdf

UK - 5 Years Parts and 5 Year Labour
https://www.kawai.co.uk/service/kawai5yearswarranty.pdf

Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838493
04/12/19 05:20 PM
04/12/19 05:20 PM
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Raleigh, North Carolina
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The Clavs get 5 years in the US. Not sure about the CA series.

Re: Why choose a VPC1 over a CA48? [Re: vb321] #2838494
04/12/19 05:22 PM
04/12/19 05:22 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
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Raleigh, North Carolina
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I'll personally sell you a VPC for only 15 cents. And free shipping.
But I don't ship to WHEREVER-YOU-ARE. smile
Originally Posted by vb321
I can put a VPC1 into the shopping basket at Thomann's US site (that must be quite a shopping basket), and it shows $1256 including shipping. But it also shows an apology for Kawai preventing them from shipping it to the US.
It's the old bait-and-switch. Put it on sale ... but sorry, we're out of stock (forever). frown

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