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#3085439 02/22/21 10:38 AM
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Hello everybody

I'm going to buy my very first piano. Well my first decent digital piano, because I have a very old one which doesn't even have 88 keys. The point is that I have a budget of 1000 euros more o less. A bit flexible but not much. I had thought about a new kdp 110 which I know is a good piano for a beginners like I am. But, on the other hand, for a bit more, I could buy a second hand CA 48 with almost no use and still two years of warranty. What do you recommend me? Feel free to speak about technical specs, I think I will understand.

Thanks for reading

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- The CA48 has 3 main piano sounds (SK-EX, EX, Upright); the KDP110 has only the SK-EX.
- The CA48 has a wooden keyboard (longer keys, compared to the plastic action of the KDP110, so easier to play with fingers near the fallboard). A wooden keyboard, usually, means a less noisy action too.
- The CA48 has a better piano engine (PHI vs HI).
- Both the instruments have 20Wx2 of output speaker power, but the CA48 has speakers on the frontal part too (so, 4 speakers instead of 2 of the KDP110), so it should sound a little better.

The other things should be more or less the same. The KDP110 is much lighter, because the plastic action (39Kg vs 57Kg) but for a cabinet-style DP this shouldn't be of concern.

So, the CA48 is better. If it's really in good conditions I would pick that over the KDP110.

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Thanks for replying. I didn't know that of the silent action if if was a wooden one. I think I would really appreciate that, I hate the clicky sound or similar when playing.

On the other hand, what more differences are there between wooden and plastic actions referring to the touch and sensivity? I mean, is it subjective or wooden keyboards are usually more pleasant to play?

I would also like to know how similar the CA48 and CA49 are because I'm going to go to a piano shop to try mainly the kdp 110, but I guess the won't have any CA48, they will probably have the CA49. That will be my first contact and well, I just wanted to know if the sounds and feeling of those two were similar. I know that have almost the same specs but maybe there are some differences which I don't know.

Last, I wondered if it is something stupid to buy a second hand piano without being able to meet the owner and trying the piano before. And, related to this, could I really see it is I good shape without personally try it? I mean, maybe a good video of the owner or something like that.

Ohh, by the way, what price would you pay for a second-hand CA48 in good conditions?

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Wooden keyboards from Kawai have longer keys, so, with a longer pivot point, they are more comfortable to play near the fallboard.

I think the main difference between CA48 and CA49 is the speaker system. The CA49 uses a new Onkyo speakers system which offers better sound clarity. But if you use headphones probably you will not notice differences.
Another improvement is in the control panel: the CA49 has an OLED display which makes easier to change the options.

Originally Posted by Amadeus M.
[...]Last, I wondered if it is something stupid to buy a second hand piano without being able to meet the owner and trying the piano before. And, related to this, could I really see it is I good shape without personally try it? I mean, maybe a good video of the owner or something like that.
IMHO from a video you cannot see if a DP is really in good conditions. You should see the instrument with your eyes and you should play every key with "your" fingers.
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Ohh, by the way, what price would you pay for a second-hand CA48 in good conditions?
€ 1000-1100

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I will usually use headphones, so no problem with the speakers. It was just to make sure I could try the CA 49 at a shop and the feeling of the keyboard would be the same, and the sound too, despite the better speakers.

I will try to personally try the piano then so, any recommendations about what to check? I mean, to see if the piano works perfectly. In the case I choose to buy that, maybe I fall in love with the kdp 110 when I try it but, don't actually think so 😁.

Ohh and, by the way, are the black keys longer in wooden keyboards too?

Last edited by Amadeus M.; 02/23/21 03:10 AM.
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Considering it would be your very first 88-keys digital piano with weighted keyboard, my suggestion is to let a person with more experience try the instrument in your place. Ideally you should try ALL the keys (and buttons/sliders), to check if they work and if they feel "right" (so press the keys with different dynamics -- i.e.: from pianissimo to fortissimo) and to check there are no strange noises or other anomalies. And remember to check the 3 pedals too (so, you have to know exactly how the 3 pedals work).

About the length of the keys, consider that the external (visible) length is (more or less) the same in all the digital pianos (of course the visible part of the black keys is shorter compared with the white keys, but the internal part has the same length for all the keys). What could change very much between different actions is the total length of the key, including the part that goes inside and therefore you don't see.

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The actions of the KDP-110 and CA48 are very different designs as well as using different materials.

The KDP-110 uses a folded action, where the hammer weights are folded under/inside the key itself, to save space. The end of the key is the pivot point, so the overall keystick can be quite short. Kawai have a better folded action (RH3) than the KDP-110 action (RHC2 - the C stands for Compact i.e. shorter). RH3 is found in the CN series, the MP7SE and the ES920.

The CA48, in common with Kawai's other top end DPs (CA series, VPC1, MP11SE), uses a see-saw style action, where the back of the key extends past the pivot point like on an acoustic piano, and the back of the key pushes up on the hammer mechanism when you push the key down, again like an acoustic. This makes the keysticks much longer and heavier. Only Kawai and Casio GP pianos use this kind of see-saw action, all the others use folded actions. I think this helps make it feel a bit more realistic, but obviously feel is a subjective thing and many prefer particular folded actions (such as Roland's or Yamaha's) to any of the see-saw actions.

Note that the CA48 uses the 'Grand Feel Compact' action, which has shorter keysticks and a shorter pivot point than the full Grand Feel III action of the top end CA79 and CA99. This makes it significantly lighter, which is useful if you want to get it up any stairs, but most people prefer the feel of the longer GFIII action (though the CA99 is expensive - similar money to a low-end acoustic).

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I agree with you that I should ask someone with more knowledge about pianos to come with me and try it, but that may be very difficult to me because I don't really know anyone but a friend who isn't an expert either. The part of the keys I guess I could do it by myself, but I have absolutely no idea about how pedals work. Anyway, I will learn it perfectly after trying it. I think that there won't be any problem there.

I know that about the length of the keys and I'd love to have a wooden keyboard. However, it's true that I would suffer its higher weight because I plan to move it twice a year, between my two residences. But, since I think I can easily ensemble and unensemble it, It shouldn't be a problem.

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Anyway, your recommendation, if it is in good conditions and for more o less 200€ more, is the Kawaii CA 48, isn't it? So if that's the case, I will learn everything I have to check those conditions in this few days until I can try it. If you know some things that I should ask the owner or maybe the way to check the correct working of the piano, I would be so grateful if you told me.

(By the way, in the last message, I meant before, not after 😅)

Last edited by Amadeus M.; 02/23/21 10:41 AM.
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Or maybe, in that price range, you may recommend me other pianos. I like the brand Kawaii but if other brand has a better piano, the brand does not matter at all. The only thing I really want in my piano is good piano sounds and good keyboard.

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The CA48 is the better instrument compared to the KDP-110. I don't know what else you could do other than what I said before.

What to ask to the owner? Of course, to lower the price! laugh

P.S.: if you want a portable and very light instrument in that price range consider the Kawai ES520 too. Same piano engine of the CA48, same keyboard action of the KDP-110, but it's much lighter.

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Originally Posted by Amadeus M.
Or maybe, in that price range, you may recommend me other pianos. I like the brand Kawaii but if other brand has a better piano, the brand does not matter at all. The only thing I really want in my piano is good piano sounds and good keyboard.
In that price range IMHO Kawai, Yamaha and Roland make the best products. The prices are similar, and the quality you'll get is similar too, so you should make your choice based on the piano sound you like most (they have very different sound characters) and on the feeling of the action. If you cannot test yourself these keyboards in a store, then go see as many youtube reviews you can, so that you can hear the sound timbre of these instruments and judge yourself.

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Sorry for being so tiring 😅. I have it clear: I will go to the shop and try as many pianos as I can and see which suits me better. Anyway, I love Kawai's sound from what I've heard in videos and would love to have a wooden keyboard too, so, probably, if It is in good condition, I will buy the CA 48.

Originally Posted by magicpiano
P.S.: if you want a portable and very light instrument in that price range consider the Kawai ES520 too. Same piano engine of the CA48, same keyboard action of the KDP-110, but it's much lighter.


I'm not considering buying a portable piano mainly for three subjective reasons. The first one is that I will only have to move it twice a year and it's not a problem for me. The second is that I really love how a console digital piano looks like. The third is that I hate the stands of portable digitals pianos because they move a lot and if I didn't use one I think I would not have place where to place it.


Thank you very much, seriously, you were really helpful. And, if you like, I will tell you what happened in two weeks or so.

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Well, moving twice a year is something I wouldn't want to do with a cabinet-style digital piano (especially if with wooden keys)... I agree they are good looking and inspiring, but they are heavy and require 2 persons to move them.. In this case I would definitely buy a slab-piano. There are solid stands that doesn't move at all when you play with a DP on top of them.

Anyway, you have to do what you think it's better for you, so if you think it's not a great deal to have to move 2 times a year with an heavy cabinet-style digital piano, then go for it! smile


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