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Got a P125 for the office - impressions
#3025870 09/17/20 03:07 AM
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A while back i settled on a lovely old Yamaha U1 acoustic which I've been playing religiously every night while taking lessons with a teacher weekly or bi weekly. However circumstances have changed and I now work a lot and at weird hours and have had to put my lessons on hold - as a consequence my practice and playing at home has slipped since I now work at weird hours and I'm often just too drained when I'm finally home.
To counter act this thought I'd rent a cheap digital for my office and get a Piano Marvel subscription since I do need a break once in a while and might as well use it for something meaningful instead of just wasting time on the internet or what have you.

So I have now set up a P125 hooked up to an iPad running Piano Marvel.

For reference when I played digitals I have had a Roland F140, a Kawai VPC1, a Kawai ES8 and a Yamaha 645.

The sound of the P125 through headphones is way better than I had expected - while not as lively as the ES8 it is more than adequate for my purpose.
The action - oh boy. It actually feels quite well put together - no wobble, weird noises etc - but it does seem to have quite high "up-weight" - uncomfortably so - feels spring loaded - which I guess it probably is :-) For moderately advanced classical repetoire it really sucks - as I get closer to the fall board the up weight while holding chords gets quite prohibitive. What I'll mainly be doing is using Piano Marvel to get better at sight reading etc - and for this it is absolutely fine.
The built in audio interface is awesome for what I'm doing - just plugin in the iPad and everything works with all sound - both the P125 and the iPad - being routed through the piano.

If I'm still working like this in half a year when the lease is up I believe I'll move up to something a bit nicer - I had a brief play with a Yamaha 745 at the store the other day and the action was awesome - that would probably hit my sweet spot even if it is a bit expensive for what I'll be doing with it.

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Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
Morten Olsson #3025876 09/17/20 03:49 AM
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Congratulations, p125 is good for the price. Do you like 745 action? For you is better es8? Is
Similar your acoustic? Thanks you

Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
Morten Olsson #3025879 09/17/20 04:01 AM
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Hi - I only played the 745 very briefly - I would have to have a proper session to be sure.
But my initial impressions were very, very positive - it felt better to my hands than any other DP action I have played except for the "real" hybrids with real actions. I could certainly live with the 745 as my main piano action wise - the sound however good still sounds like what it is - recordings played on a speaker in a box.

Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
Morten Olsson #3025881 09/17/20 04:11 AM
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Hi. Your post was very informative to me, since you specifically mentioned upweight (which is surprisingly neglected in keybed comparisons that focus only on downweight). I also find the p125 upweight very distracting...

May I ask you for comments on upweight comparison with the keyboards you mentioned (f140, vpc1, es8, 645,745). I currently dont have access to try some of these... I am only familiar with the f140 that I think it is less "springy" but it is also more sluggish than p125. I currently have a casio and looking for an upgrade in the near future. Thanks.

Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
Morten Olsson #3025886 09/17/20 04:25 AM
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None of the other pianos I have played have had the excessive upweight I experience with the 125.

The 645 did however have a very unpleasant initial resistance when depressing the keys which I absolutely detested. I would have chosen the f140 over the 645 any day because of this - though I know for a fact that many users love the NWX - could be I'm just more sensitive to stuff like this because I only have a few years of experience.

If price is a factor and built in sounds are a must my favorite so far is the ES8 - lovely action, awesome sounds and not too expensive. The VPC1 was just awesome in every way - except for the fact that I ended up spending way too much time and energy on speakers, vsts etc.

If I could somehow lessen the upweight of the P125 it would be ideal for what I use it for - but as it stands it will have to go when the lease is up - I'll probably go for a 745 or maybe a 735 if the action feels good on that. I really, really don't want to give up the built in audio interface which is just wonderful to have for what I'm doing so most other manufaturers are out of the picture.
If Yamaha would upgrade the P515 with the 745 action I would be all set :-)

Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
Morten Olsson #3025898 09/17/20 05:13 AM
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I'm on the same exact page: p515 with 735/745 action (or 735/745 altogether), or NU1X if I can justify myself the cost and only if finger fatigue is significantly reduced. I think people give too much importance to static downweight while upweight (ie, forcing the hammer to stay up), dynamic downweight, and keybed cushioning are probably more important to finger stress. Thank you for your comments.

Last edited by vagfilm; 09/17/20 05:14 AM.
Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
vagfilm #3025902 09/17/20 05:36 AM
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Originally Posted by vagfilm
Hi. Your post was very informative to me, since you specifically mentioned upweight (which is surprisingly neglected in keybed comparisons that focus only on downweight). I also find the p125 upweight very distracting...
Any folded digital piano action has the same upweight as downweight, because there is no hammer escapement. That's the biggest disadvantage compared to a hybrid action with real escapement.


Richwood RD-17C-CE | LaMancha Rubi CM-N | Yamaha P-515
Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
Morten Olsson #3025910 09/17/20 05:59 AM
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In fact, that is probably true on paper if we consider only the hammer weight. But in real life the differences are notorious from action to action and I am not entirely sure of the reasons for that variation (of course, none gets as light as an acoustic action and never will until someone puts escapement into a folded action, which does not seem to be impossible to do since in many models the switches are activated by the hammer shank and not by the heavier hammer head; thus, making an escaping and reengaging mechanism between the shank and hammer head does not seem to constitute an impossible engineering feat, but I be naive and I certainly digress...).

Maybe the weight of the key portion in front of the pivot point (by design or using counterweights) can make it so that at a particular angle the key is in balance; and maybe by design or by chance some keybeds reach this balance point when the hammer weight is maximal (ie, at key bottoming). On the other hand the actual center of gravity of the hammer (where it vertically stands in relation to the folding joint) also affects leverage and how the hammer weight changes throughout key travel. Or some other reason. But upweight at key bottom varies between digital actions and that is not entirely related to static downweight (p515 being a very good example from my short experience).

Last edited by vagfilm; 09/17/20 06:01 AM.
Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
Morten Olsson #3025994 09/17/20 12:32 PM
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I remember when months ago, before the pandemic, I tried the P125, I found it very light, fast and pleasurable to play. And it felt very well built, with no strange noises of sort (and at the time the unit had been in use for about 1 year).
I remember fast trills were much easier to do on the P125. On my CN37 RHIII action, to play decent fast trills without missing many notes, I have to "focus" and try to synchronize the movement of my fingers with the return speed of the keys, if you know what I mean... That was not necessary at all on the P125. It was like the keyboard action helped me in playing the trills (maybe it's a consequence of a greater upweight?). Unfortunately I didn't try to play near the fallboard so I cannot say if it was better or worse than the RHIII regarding this aspect.

Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
Morten Olsson #3026006 09/17/20 01:04 PM
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If the P125 does use springs they are probably most compressed at the bottom of the key stroke so the upweight could be larger than the downweight.

Something I would like to see is placing counter weights in folded actions (I know Kawai does this with the RHIII). In itself this will not make the upweight lighter than the downweight, but it does increase the dynamic weight, which might allow manufactures to decrease the static downweight/upweight while still maintaining a substantial feeling and controllable action. But if the upweight is reduced too much key return could be slow.

I'm sure simulated escapement, friction, angles and many other factors play a role. But I'm not sure how much room there is to play with in slab pianos (literally) without making the action too big and complex. It would be interesting to see one of the manufactures trying something different, they probably have various prototypes sitting around using all kinds of strange designs.

Re: Got a P125 for the office - impressions
Morten Olsson #3026014 09/17/20 01:18 PM
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I believe that the Grandtouch S Wood, found on the 745, it's the nicest surprise in the CLP 700 series.


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