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Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
EssBrace #2939990 01/28/20 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by EssBrace
Originally Posted by Burkie
Originally Posted by AB99
Yes asking for three things in one instrument.

Note that requirements #1 and #2 are incompatible.
As acoustic pianos have design limitations.

E.g. Kawai's NV10 has a full acoustic action including the key weight is lighter when you pedal.
However the Yamaha N3X is superior because it keeps the key weights the same - irrespective of whether you are pedalling.

You can't have a 100% acoustic action are still be considered the best/most advanced. Improvement comes via change. Things don't get better if they stay the same (if you simply copy an acoustic action).


Interesting, but flawed, view in my opinion.

Feel free to elaborate.


Piano is one of the top human inventions of the past 300 years - help evangelize the magic!
Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
EssBrace #2940019 01/28/20 11:47 PM
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Originally Posted by EssBrace
'Best' is Yamaha Avant Grand N3X. That is best overall.


The N3X is the best I've played. It surpasses the original N3 in terms of a player connection with a quality acoustic grand.

That is followed by the N1X and the N2, in that order. I haven't played anything else - in the hybrid category- that I would care to own.




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Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
EssBrace #2940030 01/29/20 12:58 AM
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Correct - about what I meant. Digital piano - not an actual acoustic piano with digital capabilities. Thank you! (To clarify further - to me - a digital piano has a sound that comes from some sort of digital formulation - not from a hammer hitting a string - and has the advantage of staying in tune - perhaps with the sounds of an instrument that would acoustically be a lot larger, and my I add - perhaps we should not consider DPs that are over $15,000 U.S.) I have found this discussion interesting, so I do appreciate it.

Originally Posted by EssBrace
Originally Posted by JoeT
So what's the point of this discussion?


I assumed the OP meant best 'digital piano', not acoustic piano with digital capabilities.

'Best' is Yamaha Avant Grand N3X. That is best overall. The Novus NV10 may or may not have a slightly superior action. But as a package the N3X is certainly superior - but then it costs a lot more.

Aside from 'hybrids' such as Avant Grand and Novus then the older Roland V-Piano Grand (don't know if it's still available) could make a case for itself because I think Roland put some very careful thought into the onboard amplification.

Otherwise I would imagine the brand new Kawai CA series instruments will be about as good as it gets in the world of 'standard' (for want of a better word) digital pianos.


Last edited by AB99; 01/29/20 01:02 AM.
Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
AB99 #2940100 01/29/20 07:49 AM
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Originally Posted by AB99

It is unfortunate that I really like the Steinway sound the best - because it seems that there is not a "hybrid" out yet that has accomplished that.

I agree about VSL' steinway, btw.

Thank you very much!

You should also try the Casio GP-310 and GP-510 - they have a Steinway sample as their Hamburg setting.

The main drawback to those is their keys are a little bit slippery (and by little bit, I mean a lot!). But if your fingers don't sweat much then they should be fine.

Last edited by Burkie; 01/29/20 07:51 AM.

Piano is one of the top human inventions of the past 300 years - help evangelize the magic!
Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
AB99 #2940124 01/29/20 09:54 AM
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To be honest when I bought my N1X (not delivered yet), I also played some acoustics.
A simple U3 sounds far better.
My next piano, after the N1X, will be an acoustic grand.


My pianos : Kawai ES8, Yamaha N1X
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Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
Burkie #2940353 01/29/20 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Burkie
Originally Posted by EssBrace
Originally Posted by Burkie
Originally Posted by AB99
Yes asking for three things in one instrument.

Note that requirements #1 and #2 are incompatible.
As acoustic pianos have design limitations.

E.g. Kawai's NV10 has a full acoustic action including the key weight is lighter when you pedal.
However the Yamaha N3X is superior because it keeps the key weights the same - irrespective of whether you are pedalling.

You can't have a 100% acoustic action are still be considered the best/most advanced. Improvement comes via change. Things don't get better if they stay the same (if you simply copy an acoustic action).


Interesting, but flawed, view in my opinion.

Feel free to elaborate.


You've quoted me but I also asked you how much experience you have of grand pianos. Of course I may be wrong but I'm guessing not much.

Your point about key weighting changing when the damper pedal is pressed is valid of course insofar as it's technically a fact. But the reality - which you'd know if you had spent time on a grand piano - is that it has no detrimental or disconcerting effect whatsoever. One's brain just subliminally adjusts in a totally seamless and more or less instantaneous way.

I had a Yamaha P-515 from November 12th until yesterday. I sold it after spending maybe about 30 minutes on it, possibly an hour at most (and it had sat there totally unplayed since November 13th - a significant date because that's the day my current acoustic arrived). It's a great portable digital piano. But if you have access to a decent grand piano there is no digital that can get anywhere near it, in any musical sense whatsoever.

So don't kid yourself that the makers of digital pianos have found ways to 'improve' certain grand piano design elements; they haven't. Yes the acoustic needs tuning. But I have done nothing at all to control the temperature or humidity.

I previously owned a Yamaha AvantGrand N3 and a number of other high end digitals. The N3(X) is a very good thing but it is still miles away from rivalling a good grand piano. I really don't think any digital piano will ever get particularly close.


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Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
AB99 #2940358 01/29/20 06:34 PM
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May not happen in my lifetime, but ever is a long time.


My chronological list of the top 20 composers: Bach, Handel, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Schumann, Wagner, Verdi, Brahms, Dvorak, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Debussy, Bartok, Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Shostakovich.
Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
AB99 #2940359 01/29/20 06:35 PM
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Originally Posted by EssBrace

But if you have access to a decent grand piano there is no digital that can get anywhere near it, in any musical sense whatsoever.


Counterpoint: that depends on your goals. I am absolutely convinced that you can record via a DP with such quality the average listener would never, ever guess it wasn't a real grand piano. And that, to me, is ultimately the end goal.

That the experience of you, the musician, is different when sitting and playing is obviously true, and I agree I doubt a digital reproduction can ever fully replicate the intricacies of live acoustic sound.

Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
AB99 #2940367 01/29/20 06:53 PM
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Counterpoint: that depends on your goals. I am absolutely convinced that you can record via a DP with such quality the average listener would never, ever guess it wasn't a real grand piano. And that, to me, is ultimately the end goal.

Recording digitally with an acoustic piano is just sampling every performance instead of sampling as part of the engineering of the instrument. This certainly will blur many of the differences between a digital and acoustic piano. The player of an acoustic piano today has more precise control of dynamics, which can come through in a recording. A listener of the recording would never have a way of knowing whether the dynamics captured in a recording were in any way the result of a limitation on what they player could have done, so whether or not a listener can tell if a recording was made with a DP or AP is not the distinguishing test.


My chronological list of the top 20 composers: Bach, Handel, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Schumann, Wagner, Verdi, Brahms, Dvorak, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Debussy, Bartok, Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Shostakovich.
Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
AB99 #2940373 01/29/20 07:06 PM
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Sometimes people forget why they purchase digital pianos. If a digital piano can fully recreate an acoustic piano then what’s the point? Just buy an acoustic. Digital pianos are to play quietly with headphones or to have a compact instrument. To mention just a few of the most popular reasons and there are many others. Personally I’m bound to digital pianos for exactly these two reasons. Once I’m not limited by space and neighbors you would see me running quicker than that Bolt guy towards the acoustic piano shop 😉

Last edited by CyberGene; 01/29/20 07:08 PM.

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Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
CyberGene #2940378 01/29/20 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by CyberGene
Sometimes people forget why they purchase digital pianos. If a digital piano can fully recreate an acoustic piano then what’s the point? Just buy an acoustic. Digital pianos are to play quietly with headphones or to have a compact instrument. To mention just a few of the most popular reasons and there are many others. Personally I’m bound to digital pianos for exactly these two reasons. Once I’m not limited by space and neighbors you would see me running quicker than that Bolt guy towards the acoustic piano shop 😉


Or to be able to have a vastly broader palette of sound available, which is essential rather than a luxury when you produce music in a wide variety of genres.

Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
Sweelinck #2940379 01/29/20 07:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Sweelinck
Quote

Counterpoint: that depends on your goals. I am absolutely convinced that you can record via a DP with such quality the average listener would never, ever guess it wasn't a real grand piano. And that, to me, is ultimately the end goal.

Recording digitally with an acoustic piano is just sampling every performance instead of sampling as part of the engineering of the instrument. This certainly will blur many of the differences between a digital and acoustic piano. The player of an acoustic piano today has more precise control of dynamics, which can come through in a recording. A listener of the recording would never have a way of knowing whether the dynamics captured in a recording were in any way the result of a limitation on what they player could have done, so whether or not a listener can tell if a recording was made with a DP or AP is not the distinguishing test.


Sure, but ask yourself for what kind of music that precise control of dynamics is really relevant. Heck, in pop music the piano goes through multiple stages of compression anyway: Garritan CFX tends to peak around -13dBFS, good luck getting that to -14LUFS with the pure natural dynamics of a grand! !

Last edited by sleutelbos; 01/29/20 07:32 PM.
Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
EssBrace #2940388 01/29/20 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by EssBrace

You've quoted me but I also asked you how much experience you have of grand pianos. Of course I may be wrong but I'm guessing not much.

You did indeed, however I already replied the other day to your question - it appears you ignored that.

Last edited by Burkie; 01/29/20 08:36 PM.

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Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
EssBrace #2940390 01/29/20 08:40 PM
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Originally Posted by EssBrace

Your point about key weighting changing when the damper pedal is pressed is valid of course insofar as it's technically a fact. But the reality - which you'd know if you had spent time on a grand piano - is that it has no detrimental or disconcerting effect whatsoever. One's brain just subliminally adjusts in a totally seamless and more or less instantaneous way.

That's false - your brain learns to work around the piano's physical flaw yes. But your brain has to learn to do that - that takes years of practise. That is not the same as 'subliminally adjusts' as you incorrectly purport!

You may have lots of experience playing grand pianos - that's why you've learned over the years to adjust to them. It's still a design flaw that is completely unnecessary and did in fact slow down your learning progress.

Last edited by Burkie; 01/29/20 08:43 PM.

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Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
EssBrace #2940393 01/29/20 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by EssBrace
Yes the acoustic needs tuning. But I have done nothing at all to control the temperature or humidity.

You must have a cheap one... My C.Bechstein has a built-in heater to keep it dry. Be careful: if humidity and/or temperature fluctuates much then your sound board will warp and die. Constant climate control via 24/7/365 air conditioning is the best way to look after your acoustic. If you can afford a good piano, you can afford the electricity.

Reiterating: this is indeed a design limitation of acoustic pianos.

Last edited by Burkie; 01/29/20 08:56 PM.

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Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
AB99 #2940399 01/29/20 09:31 PM
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Many Mason & Hamlin pianos include their tension resonator to reduce the effect of humidity and temperature changes on a soundboard.


My chronological list of the top 20 composers: Bach, Handel, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Schumann, Wagner, Verdi, Brahms, Dvorak, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Debussy, Bartok, Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Shostakovich.
Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
AB99 #2940401 01/29/20 09:35 PM
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Sure, but ask yourself for what kind of music that precise control of dynamics is really relevant. Heck, in pop music the piano goes through multiple stages of compression anyway: Garritan CFX tends to peak around -13dBFS, good luck getting that to -14LUFS with the pure natural dynamics of a grand! !

It is not just total dynamic range but the fine control of dynamics within the range. I have much more control of dynamic level with a vintage upright (with reconditioned action) than I do with an MP7SE or any other DP I’ve played, which admittedly does not include an N3X or NV10 for example.


My chronological list of the top 20 composers: Bach, Handel, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Schumann, Wagner, Verdi, Brahms, Dvorak, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Debussy, Bartok, Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Shostakovich.
Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
Burkie #2940404 01/29/20 09:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Burkie

You must have a cheap one... My C.Bechstein has a built-in heater to keep it dry. Be careful: if humidity and/or temperature fluctuates much then your sound board will warp and die. Constant climate control via 24/7/365 air conditioning is the best way to look after your acoustic. If you can afford a good piano, you can afford the electricity.

Reiterating: this is indeed a design limitation of acoustic pianos.


Curious that you don’t mention owning that instrument in your profile.


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Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
CyberGene #2940405 01/29/20 10:04 PM
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a Large % of artist release their music purely off samples/digital pianos in the modern world and probably like 90+% of people can't tell a difference. So yeah, the main goal is already accomplished. I'd honestly love to get people on forums like this do a proper blind test some day. I would bet money that even the hardcore people of this forum would struggle with a lot of the highest end models , despite how confident everyone seems to be.

Originally Posted by CyberGene
. If a digital piano can fully recreate an acoustic piano then what’s the point? Just buy an acoustic

As you said, a lot of people don't have room for an acoustic, or the money. In a lot of small towns there's no acoustic of decent quality for a good price. Meanwhile we can just order almost any digital piano online. That doesn't mean they don't want it to be as realistic as possible. So "just buy an acoustic" is a pretty silly thing to say. We still want the instruments to be as realistic as possible despite the reasons we can't get an acoustic. And even if those issues didn't exist... If I could get a digital piano that weighs FAR less than an acoustic, takes up much less space, and sounds extremely real, why would I even want an acoustic that costs a lot more money?

I also think anyone that thinks digital won't ever "get close" to acoustics are either kidding themselves or are ignorant about technology in general. We can't afford the power to do it now, but theoretically it's definitely possible to reproduce the sound of an acoustic piano to the point where no human could tell it was fake. It's impossible to guess how fast technology will grow (just look at the last 20 years of computing power growth!), so I can't even throw out a real time frame but I wouldn't be surprised if it's within the next 20-30 years. This reminds me of the whole Ray-tracing debate for computer graphics. A lot of people said it wouldn't be possible to do real-time ray-tracing, ever. But we're already doing a hybrid version of it in consumer hardware (RTX video cards) in real-time. Full-blown ray-tracing in real time isn't a dream anymore. Neither is a very realistically modeled piano. It will just take time. But we definitely have a long ways to go.

Re: What is hands down best DP that sounds/feel like ac grand?
terminaldegree #2940407 01/29/20 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by terminaldegree
Originally Posted by Burkie
You must have a cheap one... My C.Bechstein has a built-in heater to keep it dry.


Curious that you don’t mention owning that instrument in your profile.


Indeed.

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