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Key weight setting
#3001745 07/12/20 09:10 AM
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This is sort of a hybrid question - digital keyboard and beginner, so I guess I’ll put it here.

I’m a beginner and have a Roland FP-30. I like the feel when I decrease the key weight one level. Would this hinder transition to an acoustic in any way? Would the normal setting be better for me for reasons I don’t know of? I really like the action, btw.

Thanks

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Re: Key weight setting
CajunJ #3001768 07/12/20 10:03 AM
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“Weight” settings on digital are weird, because you are not actually adjusting the physical weight / force required to press the keys, but the change in sound with the adjustment is very convincing and feels like you are.

I have a cheap digital that I don’t use much these days compared with my acoustic, and I tried both ends of the spectrum with the weight/ volume adjustment thing. Nowadays I generally set the weight high = volume low to try to mimic the acoustics I play on.

I’m not sure what the key weight on the Roland will be, but it will probably be around 50 grams to simulate a typical acoustic. But what is often not mentioned is that an acoustic without use of pedal will be much, much heavier than 50g, probably nearer 80g. So if you plan to play an acoustic without using much / any pedal, set the Roland as heavy as possible to mimic it.


Yamaha U1. Yamaha P-45. Yamaha RD-250 (a long time ago). smile
Re: Key weight setting
scirocco #3001780 07/12/20 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by scirocco
“Weight” settings on digital are weird, because you are not actually adjusting the physical weight / force required to press the keys, but the change in sound with the adjustment is very convincing and feels like you are.

I have a cheap digital that I don’t use much these days compared with my acoustic, and I tried both ends of the spectrum with the weight/ volume adjustment thing. Nowadays I generally set the weight high = volume low to try to mimic the acoustics I play on.

I’m not sure what the key weight on the Roland will be, but it will probably be around 50 grams to simulate a typical acoustic. But what is often not mentioned is that an acoustic without use of pedal will be much, much heavier than 50g, probably nearer 80g. So if you plan to play an acoustic without using much / any pedal, set the Roland as heavy as possible to mimic it.

Thanks, scirocco. I haven’t had my hand on an acoustic in a long time. Once lessons go back to normal I’ll be playing the teacher’s. I think the Roland is set at around 62ish. I like the lighter setting because I can play louder with less force, key weight stays the same as you said. I’m interested to see how the teacher’s acoustic compares.

Re: Key weight setting
CajunJ #3001802 07/12/20 10:55 AM
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If you practice with a volume setting of less than 8 (out of 10), you'll be surprised at how LOUD the acoustic piano is.

Also, its sustain will be longer than the FP30, and you'll have to adjust your pedalling to avoid "mush".

Have fun!


. Charles
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PX-350 / microKorg XL+ / Pianoteq / Lounge Lizard / EV ZXA1 speaker
Re: Key weight setting
Charles Cohen #3001814 07/12/20 11:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Charles Cohen
If you practice with a volume setting of less than 8 (out of 10), you'll be surprised at how LOUD the acoustic piano is.

Also, its sustain will be longer than the FP30, and you'll have to adjust your pedalling to avoid "mush".

Have fun!

I can’t wait!

Re: Key weight setting
CajunJ #3001867 07/12/20 02:59 PM
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I have a Roland different model and changing the key touch basically just changes at what point the key responds to being pressed. A light touch it responds near the top so you don't have to press down much to trigger the note. Heavy touch the key responds closer to the bottom of the key press requiring being push down harder to get to the bottom.

The best comparison is just go play a acoustic piano and focus on the feel. You must know someone with a piano, or some place that has a piano you can sit and playing for a couple minutes to check out the feel. In these days and age of Covid-19 you might want to bring a pair of the thin gloves so the owner of the piano can relax that someone else is playing their piano.

Re: Key weight setting
MrShed #3001875 07/12/20 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by MrShed
I have a Roland different model and changing the key touch basically just changes at what point the key responds to being pressed. A light touch it responds near the top so you don't have to press down much to trigger the note. Heavy touch the key responds closer to the bottom of the key press requiring being push down harder to get to the bottom.

That is most definitely NOT how the touch setting in a digital piano works. Digital pianos have sensors (usually 3 or more) that respond to key velocity NOT how deep a key is presssed. A lighter touch makes the piano respond to slower key presses.

I personally don't think it's a good idea to have a light touch on a digital. Digitals are generally lighter than acoustics and if you practice too long like that you're more likely to have ghost notes when you switch to an accoustic because of the higher velocity required to trigger any sound.

Re: Key weight setting
CajunJ #3002030 07/13/20 03:02 AM
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Originally Posted by qazsedcft
I personally don't think it's a good idea to have a light touch on a digital.
I have a Kawai CA95 and the touch weight is very similar to the acoustics I have owned and those I have occasional access to. I vary the touch weight periodically. Using the heavier touch settings flatters my playing more but doesn't generate as much volume. Using a lighter touch setting I get better volume and have greater difficulty controlling the quieter passages.

I grew up using a pre-war upright that had very hard hammers and was kept in a small room. It needed a lot more effort controlling the dynamics and I have always felt that this gave me an advantage when I spent about three weeks a year on a Bluethner concert grand in a small auditorium. When the house is empty I enjoy a nostalgic trip down memory lane putting the digital on dual voice mode, concert grand + upright, a light or very light touch weight with appropriate voicing adjustments and run through the oldest pieces in my repertoire.

Acoustic players have access to two touch weights all the time, one with pedal and a heavier one without. Playing a digital I make use of five touch settings and believe it keeps me flexible enough to tackle any acoustic I get access to.


Richard
Re: Key weight setting
CajunJ #3002756 07/15/20 06:15 AM
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I have a Roland DP603 and with it I think low sensitivity setting and high volume setting give more acoustic-like and generally better sound than low volume and high sensitivity.

Those two settings go of course hand in hand so that if you press the key with same medium mf velocity you will get the same volume from the speakers in dB with let say sensitivity 50%/volume 50%, sensitivity 25%/volume 60% and sensitivity 75%/volume 40%. The zeroth law of sound engineering says that "louder always sounds better" so you can get confused when tweaking sensitivity only, thinking higher sensitivity sounds better. If you compensate the dB level with volume control you can make better comparison.

With low sensitivity you will use higher master volume, which will increase the maximum sound output and the dynamic range. With high volume the sustain is longer and and sympathetic resonance comes out better. Also you can really ruin the sound with too much pedaling, that will happen with acoustic piano too. With high sensitivity the sound is more percussive and focused on the single notes you play and pedal is somewhat more forgiving because the sustain is not so pronounced.

Re: Key weight setting
Cocorbett #3002996 07/15/20 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Cocorbett
I have a Roland DP603 and with it I think low sensitivity setting and high volume setting give more acoustic-like and generally better sound than low volume and high sensitivity.

Those two settings go of course hand in hand so that if you press the key with same medium mf velocity you will get the same volume from the speakers in dB with let say sensitivity 50%/volume 50%, sensitivity 25%/volume 60% and sensitivity 75%/volume 40%. The zeroth law of sound engineering says that "louder always sounds better" so you can get confused when tweaking sensitivity only, thinking higher sensitivity sounds better. If you compensate the dB level with volume control you can make better comparison.

With low sensitivity you will use higher master volume, which will increase the maximum sound output and the dynamic range. With high volume the sustain is longer and and sympathetic resonance comes out better. Also you can really ruin the sound with too much pedaling, that will happen with acoustic piano too. With high sensitivity the sound is more percussive and focused on the single notes you play and pedal is somewhat more forgiving because the sustain is not so pronounced.

It's an obvious relationship in a sense; I had a piano with 3 tonal settings, and 3 touch settings. They were identical but in reverse. The touch is sometimes annotated light med or heavy which I find helpful. In heavy mode the sound is mellow(muddy) and lacks top end.
You'd think these days they'd have sorted that out so that the sound doesn't change, but the volume would then rise or fall instead . . .
But I guess we can all turn up the vol and use less pressure!


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