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How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
#3008840 07/31/20 05:06 PM
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After a childhood with acoustic piano I have lived without a piano for years. However I now have a family on my own and want my children to have the possibility to learn to play the piano and I want to play for them too. Acoustic pianos are to heavy, to much work and want the ability to put in head phones and also record the music. So DP is the way to go.

I have the money but the quality control makes me wonder if it is worth to spend. I don't want to end up with a faulty piano in three years and need to spend $2000 again.

Also from what I read here and on other forums the better pianos seems to have more issues than the cheaper ones. I assume it is because there are more things involved and that can break. Yamaha CLP seems to have more problems than Yamaha YDP164 and YDP164 seems to break more easily than YDP144.

Kawai on the other hand seems to have the best digital pianos for my needs (light action, nice looks and rather authentic sound) but seems to break pretty easily. If I really could expect them to last I probably would go for Kawai CA58 (if I could get my hands on one) or CN39. But all these problems make me wonder if it is really a good idea. So I am leaning towards Yamaha YDP144 instead. Mostly because it seems to be more reliable and less faulty than more expensive DPs. That it has lighter action than YDP164 is another good thing.


How long do you think you can expect the following pianos and other DPs to last?
Kawai CA58
Kawai CN39
Yamaha YDP144

Is there another really reliable DP that is better than YDP144?

Last edited by Remmer; 07/31/20 05:09 PM.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008854 07/31/20 05:34 PM
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If you treat them well, they will last a long time, especially the Arius models, they are meant to be home console digital pianos. I would say 7+ years for Arius models. Kawai DPs need much more work done on them after time compared to Yamahas, but some prefer the touch and sound of them over Yamahas. It's sort of like Lexus vs. Mercedes-Benz (if you like Kawai's sound/touch over Yamaha's).


Finally bought the P515
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008858 07/31/20 05:57 PM
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The CN39 has the same action and piano engine as the ES8 or MP7SE. You can save by getting the ES8 with integrated stand and 3-pedal lyre. Example:

https://www.kraftmusic.com/kawai-es8-digital-piano-black-complete-home-bundle.html

Kawai updated the RHIII action in 2019 to address some reliability issues with key switches. Be sure you don't get a CN39, ES8, or MP7SE that has been sitting in inventory for a long time at the retailer, if you get one of those.

I prefer a 3rd party stand so that the stand does not need to be replaced if the piano is replaced. This will save even more as the ES8 without stand is $1649.


Taking a break from Piano World.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008882 07/31/20 07:37 PM
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IMO, all digital pianos will last long enough until the newer better version comes out. They are nothing like acoustics.

<disclaimer> I'm in my 60's and find my N2 to have everything I need and probably will never upgrade. I would rather spend money on a sports car.


AG N2 | ES 110 | REFACE CP | GK MK & MP amps
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008887 07/31/20 07:55 PM
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I have a 10 years old Roland FP-4 and it's all surprisingly fine! And let me tell you it did not get the easy treatment: as a highschool student I carried it several times to jam sessions (yep all 15kg of it), and it moved with me to different cities as a student, even countries as I started my first job.

So now sure I want to upgrade to some nicer hybrid, but I still enjoy it very much. I'd say if you take care of your instrument, it should last for more than 3 years.

Also you may want to consider the statistical bias of issues that people report. As with all reviews people are more likely to report bad stuff, and perhaps popular models from Kawai/Yamaha get reported more often because they are over-represented in this forum.


I post piano stuff on my instagram page --> https://www.instagram.com/marchelune smile
I own an old Roland FP-4, looking for an upgrade soon!
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008893 07/31/20 08:08 PM
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“ long enough until the newer better version comes out”. It is rather pessimistic, with a 3 years period (typically Yamaha CLP), I deduce a DP lasts only 3 years or more.

I have a CLP150 since 2003 and I am still happy with it. However, I had to make it repaired 2 times (the morherboard, a fuse), and did change recently a worn out pedal potentiometer. One phone output is broken, surely one point of welding to fix (I have a bad signal).

I plan to change it with a N1X, and hope it will last much more. I cross my finger and hope I would not have some repair. But who knows ?

Last edited by Frédéric L; 07/31/20 08:16 PM.

Yamaha CLP150, Bechstein Digital Grand, Garritan CFX, Ivory II pianos, Galaxy pianos, EWQL Pianos, Native-Instrument The Definitive Piano Collection, Soniccouture Hammersmith, Truekeys, Pianoteq
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008894 07/31/20 08:16 PM
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It's not clear that there's evidence to support any of this:
Originally Posted by Remmer
- The better pianos seems to have more issues than the cheaper ones.

- I assume it is because there are more things involved and that can break.

- Yamaha CLP seems to have more problems than Yamaha YDP164 and YDP164 seems to break more easily than YDP144.

- Kawai [piano] ... seems to break pretty easily.

- I am leaning towards Yamaha YDP144 instead ... mostly because it seems to be more reliable and less faulty than more expensive DPs.
Accounts found online are anecdotal. Even if you tally up all the things you read, you cannot know what biases are built into that data.

Do people who buy cheap pianos spend time on this forum? If not, you'll get the impression that those pianos have few problems.

Do people who buy expensive pianos have higher expectations, and might be more likely to fuss over apparent problems? If so, you'll get the impression that those pianos have more problems.

Surely there are other biasing influences ... and I don't see how you could control for any of them.

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008896 07/31/20 08:19 PM
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To be honest I would've bought the ES8... over the P-515... if it had better action... GH3X is basically RHIII and NWX is not GH3X!!


Finally bought the P515
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008897 07/31/20 08:20 PM
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I still have a almost 10 year old Yamaha cp33 which still plays like a new one, these are build like tanks.

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
U3piano #3008900 07/31/20 08:25 PM
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You've triggered me. smile
Originally Posted by U3piano
I still have a almost 10 year old Yamaha cp33 which still plays like a new one, these are build like tanks.

[Linked Image]

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008905 07/31/20 08:37 PM
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LOL grin grin grin

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Sweelinck #3008911 07/31/20 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Sweelinck
The CN39 has the same action and piano engine as the ES8 or MP7SE. You can save by getting the ES8 with integrated stand and 3-pedal lyre. Example:

https://www.kraftmusic.com/kawai-es8-digital-piano-black-complete-home-bundle.html

Conversely, the DG30 also has the same action and piano engine as the CN39 and ES8 but it's housed in a striking grand piano-like cabinet finished in luxurious ebony polish.

If you have the money (MSRP $7500), then this attractive cabinet would be sure to bring beauty and elegance to any home, like a piece of fine furniture.

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008917 07/31/20 09:17 PM
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My takeaway was quite the opposite. The cabinetry of that DG30 looks cheap and unattractive. That pregnant bump on the back doesn't add value. It destroys value.

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
MacMacMac #3008924 07/31/20 09:46 PM
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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
My takeaway was quite the opposite. The cabinetry of that DG30 looks cheap and unattractive. That pregnant bump on the back doesn't add value. It destroys value.

@ Mac, You mad bro ?

Kawai just dinging the newbies so they can support their Novus fans.

Robbing the poor to feed the rich, it's that capitalism the japanese learned from us americans, hahaha.

It's actually funny, a bunch of Jpn buisnessmen that I've met had lots of unpleasant things to say about capitalism and how it destroyed traditional jpn values.

Last edited by jeffcat; 07/31/20 09:48 PM.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Frédéric L #3008956 07/31/20 11:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Frédéric L
“ long enough until the newer better version comes out”. It is rather pessimistic, with a 3 years period (typically Yamaha CLP), I deduce a DP lasts only 3 years or more.

I have a CLP150 since 2003 and I am still happy with it. However, I had to make it repaired 2 times (the morherboard, a fuse), and did change recently a worn out pedal potentiometer. One phone output is broken, surely one point of welding to fix (I have a bad signal).

I plan to change it with a N1X, and hope it will last much more. I cross my finger and hope I would not have some repair. But who knows ?

3 repairs in 17 years is much imo. I expect better if I spend $2000.

Originally Posted by Marchelune
I have a 10 years old Roland FP-4 and it's all surprisingly fine! And let me tell you it did not get the easy treatment: as a highschool student I carried it several times to jam sessions (yep all 15kg of it), and it moved with me to different cities as a student, even countries as I started my first job.

So now sure I want to upgrade to some nicer hybrid, but I still enjoy it very much. I'd say if you take care of your instrument, it should last for more than 3 years.

Also you may want to consider the statistical bias of issues that people report. As with all reviews people are more likely to report bad stuff, and perhaps popular models from Kawai/Yamaha get reported more often because they are over-represented in this forum.


The thing is that I teach music also. We have 10 cheap $100 keyboards and only one of them has broken in 10 years. And then some of the students play way to hard, nearly mistreat the keyboards. It makes you wonder.

But yes, people tend to report when stuff breaks.

Maybe Roland has less complicated key action and works better in the long run. I may e should take a look at some models.

Last edited by Remmer; 08/01/20 12:01 AM.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3008968 08/01/20 01:30 AM
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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
Accounts found online are anecdotal. Even if you tally up all the things you read, you cannot know what biases are built into that data.

Do people who buy cheap pianos spend time on this forum? If not, you'll get the impression that those pianos have few problems.

Do people who buy expensive pianos have higher expectations, and might be more likely to fuss over apparent problems? If so, you'll get the impression that those pianos have more problems.

Surely there are other biasing influences ... and I don't see how you could control for any of them.

Well, you really can not. But you can try to make an estimation based on info you have.

Last edited by Remmer; 08/01/20 01:36 AM.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
navindra #3008987 08/01/20 04:23 AM
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Originally Posted by navindra
Originally Posted by Sweelinck
The CN39 has the same action and piano engine as the ES8 or MP7SE. You can save by getting the ES8 with integrated stand and 3-pedal lyre. Example:

Conversely, the DG30 also has the same action and piano engine as the CN39 and ES8 but it's housed in a striking grand piano-like cabinet finished in luxurious ebony polish.

If you have the money (MSRP $7500), then this attractive cabinet would be sure to bring beauty and elegance to any home, like a piece of fine furniture.

One thing is possible and that it is equipped with better electronic circuits and amps and speakers - and that can make a huge difference. If to compare to hifi market amps and everything that goes with that.

Don't know if this is the case, but worth investigating. Listening to the actual units will tell if there is a store having both units available in store.

Just focusing on certain things they appear similar in value, I mean.

It's like comparing a BMW 3-series and 5-series - is it only size that is the difference. No, the 5-series have better insulation of road noise and similar, but they appear only to be different in size.

Personally I think DG30 looks cool, and would certainly make an impression to have in a church or a home compare to regular upright stuff.


Kawai MP7SE - Hammond XK3c - Synthesizers
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
jeffcat #3009028 08/01/20 07:17 AM
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Originally Posted by jeffcat
Originally Posted by MacMacMac
My takeaway was quite the opposite. The cabinetry of that DG30 looks cheap and unattractive. That pregnant bump on the back doesn't add value. It destroys value.

@ Mac, You mad bro ?

Kawai just dinging the newbies so they can support their Novus fans.

Robbing the poor to feed the rich, it's that capitalism the japanese learned from us americans, hahaha.

It's actually funny, a bunch of Jpn buisnessmen that I've met had lots of unpleasant things to say about capitalism and how it destroyed traditional jpn values.

What do you mean?

That Kawai steal peoples money by offering low quality products?

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
joemama42O #3009053 08/01/20 08:53 AM
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Originally Posted by joemama42O
If you treat them well, they will last a long time, especially the Arius models, they are meant to be home console digital pianos. I would say 7+ years for Arius models. Kawai DPs need much more work done on them after time compared to Yamahas, but some prefer the touch and sound of them over Yamahas. It's sort of like Lexus vs. Mercedes-Benz (if you like Kawai's sound/touch over Yamaha's).

You claimed something but I see no evidence that supports it. Some of the comments here are more like facebook posts that spreads misinformation.

No one here has had enough large number of DPs to give you a statistically accurate answer. How many piano's the above poster have owned so far?

To the OP: You will never find an accurate answer by asking a direct question like this.

Take a look at the warranty and terms of service, how often users posted about hardware issues etc. and this way you will find DPs that can be potentially risky to buy or have shorter lifespan.

The usage is also a factor. Someone who gigs with the board is going to abuse it compared to someone who only plays at home.

I have purchased 2 DPs myself so far. The first one worked for 5 years flawlessly and I sold it and bought my MP7SE.

Last edited by Abdol; 08/01/20 08:57 AM.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3009176 08/01/20 02:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Remmer
Originally Posted by Marchelune
I have a 10 years old Roland FP-4 and it's all surprisingly fine! And let me tell you it did not get the easy treatment: as a highschool student I carried it several times to jam sessions (yep all 15kg of it), and it moved with me to different cities as a student, even countries as I started my first job.

So now sure I want to upgrade to some nicer hybrid, but I still enjoy it very much. I'd say if you take care of your instrument, it should last for more than 3 years.

Also you may want to consider the statistical bias of issues that people report. As with all reviews people are more likely to report bad stuff, and perhaps popular models from Kawai/Yamaha get reported more often because they are over-represented in this forum.


The thing is that I teach music also. We have 10 cheap $100 keyboards and only one of them has broken in 10 years. And then some of the students play way to hard, nearly mistreat the keyboards. It makes you wonder.

Ah then this changes the context very much! If you expect many different players/a lot of playing time, perhaps you should to consider an acoustic with a silent system (Yamaha/Kawai). But even then I suppose you'll need frequent regulation, which is unavoidable when a piano is heavily used.


I post piano stuff on my instagram page --> https://www.instagram.com/marchelune smile
I own an old Roland FP-4, looking for an upgrade soon!
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