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Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Marchelune #3009194 08/01/20 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Marchelune
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 will buy the piano for home use. Just was surprised by the number of broken keys on DPs, because I have had no such problems at work over the years with the cheap keyboards.

But if I understand you correctly a DP which you use frequently will be damaged much sooner than if you use it less frequently.

The thing is that I will not use it that much as my main instrument is guitar.

Last edited by Remmer; 08/01/20 03:46 PM.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3009254 08/01/20 07:10 PM
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Make sure you cover it when not used, stop too much dust getting in etc. etc.

Also, I wipe the keyboard of mine down briefly with a dry microfibre cloth after each use.

I would have thought most of these things are made to a pretty sturdy standard.

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Abdol #3009267 08/01/20 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Abdol
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?

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.

You're right, this is tricky-- but it would be useful to be able to give people some kind of rough guideline, since a general timeframe makes for easier planning and budgeting.

I'm fortunate in that I've gotten to work in 5 different university class piano labs, which were using console style pianos of the major brands. Also, in teaching piano at a university in the current era where students (even piano majors) get new digital pianos around the end of high school, and get to see how things fare through their 4 years in an undergraduate degree. But even this is not enough data to say definitively.

My guess is, in home use, the cheaper slabs should work, relatively trouble free, for 5 years. After that, I do notice (even when doing Zoom lessons online) that clicking, noisy actions start to occur around that age, or possibly earlier for high/intensive use digital pianos, or especially cheap ones. Better/sturdier/more expensive models, or those played more gently, should provide closer to 10 years of nearly trouble free service. After that, I think we'd start to worry about obselence of parts, electrolytic capacitors starting to malfunction, etc.

In the university class piano labs, we get to see a more controlled environment which emulates fairly intensive home usage, as DPs get regular play for hours on weekdays (and sometimes evenings) through the fall and spring semesters...but not in summer. These labs, almost always equipped with lower midrange consoles from Yamaha, Roland, Kawai, tend to have a 12-15 year lifespan before replacement becomes necessary. Near the end of that time period, noisy or visually uneven actions, occasional non-functional keys, broken headphone and pedal connectors, and rough pedal feel becomes widespread. I've seen a couple labs extend beyond 15 years and the maintenance problems become just a constant annoyance as the equipment reaches the end of its service life. None of these higher use DPs (0%) feel like new when they're 12-15 years old, though most will still power on and function acceptably well for beginner classes, if you can keep on top of the repair needs.

Having said that, those of us around enough digital pianos probably know a few people with some really old high-end models which are pushing 20 years in gentle home use...on the other hand I toured once with a particularly heavy-handed choir director who broke multiple keys on a just repaired, newer brand-name slab, in less than a week.


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Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3009289 08/01/20 09:08 PM
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My first was a Kurzweil Mk5 "living room" piano, bought in 1992, sold to a friend in 1994. It's still working perfectly today.
My second was a Clavinova, a gift from Yamaha in 1994; gave to a family member in 2001. It's still working perfectly today.
My third was a Casio slab that moved cross country with me, sat in a van in the Las Vegas sun, dragged to gigs 3-4 nights a week, sat on its end in my garage for months at a time (it never had a case)... it's still working perfectly today.
My forth and fifth were a Korg Kronos 88 and a Yamaha MOXF8 that I didn't keep for long but I never had any problems with either one.
My sixth was a Casio PX-5S that I bought used and sold. I never had any problems with it.
My seventh was a Casio PX-560. I haven't had any trouble with it.
My eighth one is a Kawai MP11SE. I've had zero problems with it.
I've been considering the NV10. With my luck, that will be the one that breaks! smile

I definitely don't think of digital pianos as something that would last 3 or 5 years. Like someone else said, we usually replace them because we want a new model, not because the old one is broken.

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3009320 Yesterday at 12:04 AM
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And speaking of new models, that's usually an unknown matter. Only time will tell that the latest digital piano you're going to buy will last X number of years.

The good news is Japanese keyboard manufacturers like Yamaha, Korg Roland or Kawai don't reinvent their hardware every year.

The same design is there for a very long time. So the expected lifspans are very similar to few years old models. For example, Yamaha's NW is based on an almost 10 years old design (this is not necessarily bad). The same goes to Kawai's RHIII or Roland's PHA50 etc. They have been improved, modified during the past decade but still they use a simlar platform.


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Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
terminaldegree #3009378 Yesterday at 06:05 AM
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Originally Posted by terminaldegree
Originally Posted by Abdol
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?

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.

You're right, this is tricky-- but it would be useful to be able to give people some kind of rough guideline, since a general timeframe makes for easier planning and budgeting.

I'm fortunate in that I've gotten to work in 5 different university class piano labs, which were using console style pianos of the major brands. Also, in teaching piano at a university in the current era where students (even piano majors) get new digital pianos around the end of high school, and get to see how things fare through their 4 years in an undergraduate degree. But even this is not enough data to say definitively.

My guess is, in home use, the cheaper slabs should work, relatively trouble free, for 5 years. After that, I do notice (even when doing Zoom lessons online) that clicking, noisy actions start to occur around that age, or possibly earlier for high/intensive use digital pianos, or especially cheap ones. Better/sturdier/more expensive models, or those played more gently, should provide closer to 10 years of nearly trouble free service. After that, I think we'd start to worry about obselence of parts, electrolytic capacitors starting to malfunction, etc.

In the university class piano labs, we get to see a more controlled environment which emulates fairly intensive home usage, as DPs get regular play for hours on weekdays (and sometimes evenings) through the fall and spring semesters...but not in summer. These labs, almost always equipped with lower midrange consoles from Yamaha, Roland, Kawai, tend to have a 12-15 year lifespan before replacement becomes necessary. Near the end of that time period, noisy or visually uneven actions, occasional non-functional keys, broken headphone and pedal connectors, and rough pedal feel becomes widespread. I've seen a couple labs extend beyond 15 years and the maintenance problems become just a constant annoyance as the equipment reaches the end of its service life. None of these higher use DPs (0%) feel like new when they're 12-15 years old, though most will still power on and function acceptably well for beginner classes, if you can keep on top of the repair needs.

Having said that, those of us around enough digital pianos probably know a few people with some really old high-end models which are pushing 20 years in gentle home use...on the other hand I toured once with a particularly heavy-handed choir director who broke multiple keys on a just repaired, newer brand-name slab, in less than a week.

Thank you! Thisbis really useful information.

In the other thread discussing DPs that can handle heavy usage some says:
"On my Korg Kronos I practice at least two hours of advanced classical piano daily and I have no problem with the action or contacts after 3,5 years. Same with my 30 years old Kurzweil MIDIboard (though it doesn't use contacts). In my book, a DP action which start to feel bad after just 15 months is quite ordinary (to stay polite). I got rid of a Kurzweil PC2X for that reason (Fatar keybed)."

Another guy has changed contact strip in his CN37 three times in just a few years.

Someone also said Roland gives 10 years of warranty and if that is the case I probably will go for one of those.

10 years is definitely ok imo and if the warranty is 10 years you can expect it to work many more years.

I suppose the Roland's are less complicated.
"The following products receive a 10 year warranty
Roland HP603, HP605, HP504, HP506 and HP508 digital pianos
Roland HPi-50e digital pianos
Roland LX-17, LX-7 and LX-15e digital pianos"


Kawao seems to give you 2 years warranty.
Yamaha - 5 years
Casio - 3 years

Please correct me if I'm wrong. I did some fast googling.

Last edited by Remmer; Yesterday at 06:15 AM.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3009379 Yesterday at 06:18 AM
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Don't expect a warranty to deal with all the contact problems. Yamaha covers failed contacts ... but not dirty ones. (Ask me how I know.)

Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
MacMacMac #3009387 Yesterday at 07:17 AM
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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
Don't expect a warranty to deal with all the contact problems. Yamaha covers failed contacts ... but not dirty ones. (Ask me how I know.)

You are right. DPs seems to be much work and includes big costs also. I skip this whole idea and play at the acoustic one at work.

Thank you all guys for your help.

Last edited by Remmer; Yesterday at 07:17 AM.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3009390 Yesterday at 07:27 AM
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Also, know that warranties are not the same length or terms from country to country, and that it’s often the purview of the distributor for a given market. They sometimes play an important part in marketing, as you have noticed.


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Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3009398 Yesterday at 08:04 AM
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My workplace has a Yamaha CLP-340 from 2008 and it still works perfectly. Of course, it's most likely underused since people don't usually just play during working hours, but still... I guess it's a matter of what you're standards are. To someone with very little prior experience with digital pianos, I found the CLP-340 good enough. But if you're already used to playing newer models, I can imagine that going back to an older model can be hard.

Last edited by PianoEntropy; Yesterday at 08:04 AM.

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Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3009440 Yesterday at 10:15 AM
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Heavens, I just sold a Yamaha P200 that I bought in 1999. It was working perfectly and the only repair I did to it was to replace the felts that the hammers hit and rested on when they compacted and made a bit more noise than normal.

Last edited by NormB; Yesterday at 10:16 AM.
Re: How long can you expect your digital piano to survive?
Remmer #3009487 Yesterday at 12:31 PM
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I recently replaced a Kawai MP9000 that I got new and played for 18 years (probably averaging around one hour a day). I could tell that the key action was a little lighter on the more-played middle keys, but otherwise it was the same as the day I got it.


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