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Joined: Jun 2015
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Just about exactly six years ago I bought my Casio AP-650. I use it every day and I've been extremely happy with it.

For the past two days after playing for a while the sustain pedal mostly stops working, i.e. if holding the sustain pedal down and hitting a chord usually gives me sound for maybe ten seconds suddenly doing the same thing gives me about three seconds instead before it dies away. Turning the unit off and back on makes everything work again until the next time it quits, anywhere from five to twenty minutes later.

I cleaned the potentiometer and that didn't solve the problem, so now I'm looking at the connector where the wire from the pedals connects back to the main body of the piano. My theory (wild guess) is that maybe it has a poor solder joint there that the vibration from playing has finally broken loose so it's now just an intermittent connection.

Anyway, I may or may not be able to run this problem down and fix it, or I might kill it completely while trying to fix it.

Which leads me to my question:

I've only had two pianos so far. I started with a lower-end Casio CDP230 that I used for about six months to see if I was really interested in this whole piano playing thing, and then I sold that and upgraded to this AP-650 that I've been using ever since. I had sincerely hoped to get about twenty years out of this before I needed to replace it but now it looks like that won't be happening.

Sigh.

Any recommendations for piano brands that will last a while? I just hate buying stuff that I have to throw out and re-purchase a few years down the road.


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My NU1 is 9years and a tad, no problems at all; but was serviced by Yamaha under warranty at 5 years, and myself last year in lockdown. Just from this self selecting forum user sample I venture that Yamaha are pretty durable, Kawai a non-starter, others no idea.

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Longevity is one of the decisive factors in the digital piano market that is rarely taken into account. In fact, and as an aside: it also makes acoustic pianos much more attractive in comparison ... *in the long run*.

Back to topic: The mid range Yamahas seem to do quite well indeed. Can't say too much about other brands - for Kawai I assume the wooden action instruments fare better than the others (am using a VPC1 every day since it came out, no issues whatsoever).

Valid data about longevity are very hard to come by. I assume the producers know quite a bit about it but they won't tell us... independent people in repair centres might be more willing to share their information.


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I've had 2 Yamaha Clavinovas. One is 30 years old, the other is 15 years old and they both still feel and sound fine. Each of them has needed to have the sensor strip replaced a couple times. This has been necessary when issues arose like a note's velocity was consistently too loud, or a note wouldn't play at all.

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Frank, Casio products are built to last. I know musicians who have 20 yr old Casios that are still working fine. Have you talked with Casio support? https://www.casio.com/support/electronic-musical-instruments


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Originally Posted by FrankCox
Which leads me to my question:

I've only had two pianos so far. I started with a lower-end Casio CDP230 that I used for about six months to see if I was really interested in this whole piano playing thing, and then I sold that and upgraded to this AP-650 that I've been using ever since. I had sincerely hoped to get about twenty years out of this before I needed to replace it but now it looks like that won't be happening.

Sigh.

Any recommendations for piano brands that will last a while? I just hate buying stuff that I have to throw out and re-purchase a few years down the road.

I think that DP's (most of them) are built to "consumer electronics" standards, not "industrial electronics" standards, or "musical instrument" standards:

. . . Ten years of life is a long time.

Repairs are expensive, and spare parts aren't easy to find for old gear. At current labor rates, it's cheaper to buy, than to fix.

I don't like it -- especially for expensive DP's. I don't know if any of the manufacturers is better than any other.

I can commiserate with you, but I don't have any solution. The only upside is that, when you replace the AP-650, the new DP will likely have better sounds than it did. Unfortunately, it probably won't have a better action, or better amps and speakers.

My PX-350 has a broken sound generator. The sound-sample chip for the main "Grand Piano" sound is on the fritz, and the repair cost is as much as the DP is worth.

. . . It makes a good MIDI controller for Pianoteq, though.


. Charles
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I just sent an email to Casio through that link. They don't make it easy to give them a full description of the problem and what I've tried to fix it since their form has a limit of 1000 characters, so I ended up composing a note with some deliberate misspellings, abbreviations and missing punctuation and eventually got it down to 997 characters.

My preferred option would be to fix it since I like this piano and it meets my needs just fine. Unfortunately, if they tell me to take it to a repair shop hundreds of miles away and pay an unknown amount for repairs, that would rapidly become not worth doing.

Hopefully they'll be able to tell me to push on this and pull on that and it will then be fixed. smile


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Since the pedal combines mechanical pieces & electronics to provide its function, you have 2 directions from which to run down this problem. I generally would not take the power down/ power up as a temporary fix to be indicative of a mechanical failure but ..... ? difficult to say with certainty. Do the other 2 pedals work okay?

Maybe its time to at least think about where your $$ line in the sand may be that, if crossed, means you likely need to run down something else; a replacement DP.

Last edited by drewr; 10/15/21 05:41 PM.

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fwiw --

If you don't use half-pedalling much, you could (as a stopgap) plug an M-Audio SP-2 on/off sustain pedal into a rear-panel PEDAL jack -- if the DP has one. It's a $20 fix.

If it's a "cabinet piano", Casio may have omitted that jack.


. Charles
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I've mostly owned Rolands and Kawais, and they've been fine and lasted a long time. I've owned some Korgs, but got tired of the action before they wore out. Both Roland and Kawai needed to have the contact strips replaced: Kawai customer support was very helpful on this, while other companies don't do as well. For the Roland I was able to get parts through a local music store that has since gone out of business, so I suspect that will be harder to do these days than it was fifteen years ago.


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My Roland KR4500 was 28 years old and working perfectly when it went to a new home. That speaks pretty well of their longevity.


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My Roland HP2 is 20 years old and still going strong.

Course everything is made to break today and the pianos are probably no different. Plus they tend to have a lot more moving parts.

Ron

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I sent an description of the problem to that Casio webform and got a reply this morning telling me to do a factory reset.

(Hold down GMTONES and FUNCTION buttons and turn the piano on.)

It came up and said "INITIALIZING" and a few seconds later it started up as usual and I've played it for a few hours since with no problem with the sustain pedal.

So hopefully that's fixed it.

I like this piano rather a lot and have no desire at all to replace it, and it now seems to be working properly again so.... laugh


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