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Digital pianos and humidity (Kawai CA98 vs CA78) #2841949
04/24/19 01:08 PM
04/24/19 01:08 PM
Joined: Feb 2015
Posts: 12
A
alexk3954 Offline OP
Junior Member
alexk3954  Offline OP
Junior Member
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Joined: Feb 2015
Posts: 12
Hi everyone,

I am shopping around for a new digital piano and am most interested in the Kawai CA 98 and 78. I live in the mountains at 8,000 feet and the air up here is very dry. Outside, the humidity fluctuates between 40% in the winter and 10% in the summer. Right now, the RH is 35% in my home and has ranged from 20-40% over the past 24 hours.

Reading through the warranty, I noticed that damage from environmental factors such as humidity is not covered. I would love to go with the CA-98, but I am concerned that the dry air might have a negative effect on the wood soundboard. One of the reasons I am going with digital over acoustic is to minimize maintenance. I would not be excited about trying to control the humidity in my home.

I'm curious what you guys think, would the CA78 be a safer option?

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Re: Digital pianos and humidity (Kawai CA98 vs CA78) [Re: alexk3954] #2841997
04/24/19 05:02 PM
04/24/19 05:02 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 8,159
Raleigh, North Carolina
MacMacMac Offline
8000 Post Club Member
MacMacMac  Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 8,159
Raleigh, North Carolina
Fix the humidity for your own sake. For your health.
If that helps the piano, fine. But health comes first.

Re: Digital pianos and humidity (Kawai CA98 vs CA78) [Re: alexk3954] #2842061
04/24/19 08:39 PM
04/24/19 08:39 PM
Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 13
SF Bay Area
V
vb321 Online content
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vb321  Online Content
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Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 13
SF Bay Area
As an environmental factor, humidity is more likely to cause equipment damage when there's too much of it. Or what's important for warranty, damage that's clearly attributable to environmental factors. If there's mold and rust inside your piano, it's clear it's been someplace a piano shouldn't be. If instead the soundboard is cracked, it more likely because of a manufacturing defect and not because your RH is a few percent below optimal.

Those humidity levels are not that extreme or exceptional. In many parts of California it's similar, and people here (myself included) own acoustic pianos without anything horrible happening. Of course, a humidifier in the room is always an option.

Re: Digital pianos and humidity (Kawai CA98 vs CA78) [Re: MacMacMac] #2842122
04/25/19 12:40 AM
04/25/19 12:40 AM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 750
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Nordomus Offline
500 Post Club Member
Nordomus  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 750
Originally Posted by MacMacMac
Fix the humidity for your own sake. For your health.
If that helps the piano, fine. But health comes first.

Calm down there are plenty of people in the mountains and their health is fine, better than in city in many cases smile

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Re: Digital pianos and humidity (Kawai CA98 vs CA78) [Re: alexk3954] #2842134
04/25/19 02:16 AM
04/25/19 02:16 AM
Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 134
Hawai'i Island
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BigIslandGuy Offline
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BigIslandGuy  Offline
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Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 134
Hawai'i Island
We have exactly the opposite problem here. We get around 130" per year of rain and the humidity ranges between humid and more humid, 24/7/365. I've even seen mildew grow on CDs. Heater bars are a must for acoustics and a room dehumidifier even better. On your question, FWIW many years ago my mom had a spinet piano that came with us to the Seattle area after 4 years of being in Calgary, Alberta. Shortly after we got to Seattle, the soundboard developed a split, which the technician said was from the drastic change in humidity.

Re: Digital pianos and humidity (Kawai CA98 vs CA78) [Re: alexk3954] #2842321
04/25/19 12:48 PM
04/25/19 12:48 PM
Joined: Feb 2015
Posts: 12
A
alexk3954 Offline OP
Junior Member
alexk3954  Offline OP
Junior Member
A

Joined: Feb 2015
Posts: 12
MacMacMac - Don't think the dry air is a health concern. I've lived up here for years and never have problems with dry skin, chapped lips, etc.. Just stay well hydrated!

vb321 - Thanks for your input. I'm starting to feel like I might just go with the 98 and keep an eye on the humidity. I guess if RH drops a lot this summer I could look into a humidifier. The piano will be on the first floor which is all open without doors, so I'm not sure how tough it would be to control humidity in that space; guess I would have to do some more research.

BigIslandGuy - Wow, I would definitely rather deal with dry air than humid air in this case!

Edit: I also sent this question to Kawai. Just got a response saying that the soundboard would be fine in this environment. Figured I would add that here just in case it helps anyone else.

Last edited by alexk3954; 04/25/19 12:58 PM. Reason: Additional info

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