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#680324 - 01/06/05 07:12 AM Digital or "real" piano
dham340 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/05/05
Posts: 2
Loc: North East, MD
Hello. New Member here. I bought a Yamaha YDP223 for my children for christmas. Prior to purchase, I read these forums and inferred from folks comments here that the YDP223 was a good first digital piano - especially for the price I paid ($300 off list).

The kids are going to taking lessons, as well as just playing around with the piano. They will take lessons at home on the yamaha. I am fiddling around with an adult accompanyment course on my own.

Anyway, I wondered up to the piano forum here and began thinking that perhaps I made a mistake by buying a digital vs. a "real" piano. Since I have 30 days to return the digital, I visited a couple of piano dealers in the area.

I saw a couple of nice pianos - at 3 times the price of the digital - but to be perfectly honest to my ear (I spent 10 years in non-piano music lessons), the digital still sounds better. Plus, trading in the digital would mean that I would not have a midi capable keyboard (I hooked the yamaha to my mac so the kids could play with garageband. They have lots of fun with it).

So my question, or solicitation of comments, is this - is it me or does a digital piano offer alot more for the money than a "real" piano. I keep hearing and reading that children should start piano on a "real" piano, but doesn't the fact that the yamaha has a weighted action take care of that? To even come close to the functional value of the digital, it seems to me that I would have to buy a real piano with some sort of disk player system that will allow the piano to act as a midi controller. That seems like big money.

Any thoughts?


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#680325 - 01/06/05 07:52 AM Re: Digital or "real" piano
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8483
Loc: Ohio, USA
i would keep it for a few years, until the time for upgrading for real good acoustic (grand or high end upright). a cheap upright acoustic is worse than a digital piano, to me at least.

btw, Yamaha digital GH keyboard is good enough for learning piano. for beginners, key feel difference between an acoustic and such a digital piano is not that much. to say that only an acoustic piano is good for beginners is nonsense.

#680326 - 01/06/05 10:36 PM Re: Digital or "real" piano
Kenpcola Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/07/04
Posts: 86
Loc: Pensacola, FL
As long as your kids have fun with that machine, you don't need to worry too much.
It is true that acoustic piano is the way to go for beginner, guess what, becuase it is not equally perfect sounding as digital piano at any key strike. Acoustic piano really carry the mood of piano playing. Going back to your experience, Digital pianos are actually recoridng playback in response to key strike. They sound good at any moment. For someone who is really getting into playing pianos, acoustic piano is a must.
Since you simply don't know your kids gonna really pursue piano playing as career, you can forget this point, at least, for a while.

#680327 - 01/07/05 05:18 AM Re: Digital or "real" piano
saw Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/28/04
Posts: 100
Loc: Florida
I recently purchased a yamaha PF-500, and, even though quite happy with the quality of this instrument, am still struggling with the digital/acoustic question. I am an adult beginner, playing for a couple of years. I appreciate the convenience of the digital (practice late at night, while others are watching TV, etc.), but I already miss the richness and authenticity of having an acoustic in my living room. However, my 7-year-old son, who is taking lessons, says that he loves the digital. Of course, he was initially drawn to all the general midi sounds, which unfortunately might take him (or me) away from actual piano playing (he was very impressed when he found that there was a gunshot sound embedded). I am struggling with whether I can be satisfied with a digital, when my soul seems to want a real piano. I know there has been lots of discussion on this from others, so don't want to "beat a dead horse".

However, enough about me - back to the question. I think a digital is very appropriate for learning, for either children or adults, especially if one is interested in exploring the technology (midi) capabilities. However, If you need the tonal character or authentic piano experience of that corresponds with an acoustic, then that may be appropriate. My own exploration of these boards on this issue indicates that there are many very experienced players who use digitals. However, there are also many who swear by acoustics, suggesting that is the required path if one is at all "serious". There are ways of combining both ("silent" piano options), but that also gets expensive. Good luck.

Celebrate and enjoy the journey!

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#680328 - 01/07/05 06:38 PM Re: Digital or "real" piano
Bob Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/01/01
Posts: 4479
Loc: Florida
Digital pianos with a hammer action play and sound better than many spinets and consoles I tune. I own a yamaha P-90 and love it. The 223 will be fine for the kids to learn on. If they get into the intermediate level, you can trade up.

#680329 - 01/08/05 08:07 AM Re: Digital or "real" piano
cobs Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/16/04
Posts: 327
Loc: London
Digital pianos, as a whole, are just as good as the real thing. What I mean, is that if you spend the same money on a digital piano as you would on a real piano (eg. Yamaha GT7), then they can provide a sound and feel which is just as good, if not better, than some of their acoustic counterparts.
The YDP-223, near the bottom end of Yamaha's line up, is not meant to achieve this however. If you are unhappy with this model, it doesnt mean you need to upgrade to an acoustic piano, maybe just a better digital one.
A proud employee of Yamaha-Kemble Music

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