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#684173 - 09/18/07 01:33 AM recommend piano with low budget..
savvyguy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/07
Posts: 35
i'm currently on grade 2, have been using the Yamaha P70 for almost a year already..

what i want to ask is, have there been any improvements in the digital piano scene recently? are there any new ones that can be comparably better than my P70?having played the P70 for a while, together with the upright i play at my teacher's place.. i'm feeling 'shortchanged' for the quality of the tone that i get. i need to get a piano for my cousin too.. she has just started learning piano only.. or you guys recommend me to get a traditional upright? budget is around 1000USD..


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#684174 - 09/18/07 01:40 AM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
savvyguy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/07
Posts: 35
just another question :

assuming i have 1.5k USD to spare, would it be better to get a traditional or digital? cos' the weight of keys on p70 is not really sensitive enough, so i can't produce the 'feel' of the piece. how about for the adult beginner? start on digital or traditional? she's planning to learn so that she can sing and play at the same time..

#684175 - 09/18/07 02:52 AM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8483
Loc: Ohio, USA
$1500 wouldn't get you a decent acoustic, so stick to the best digital you can find with such amount.

maybe get a Yamaha CP33 with additional speakers?

#684176 - 09/19/07 04:35 AM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
savvyguy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/07
Posts: 35
hmm, so u mean its better to get a mid-end digital rather than an entry-level acoustic piano? \:\(

is CP33 much better than the P70?

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#684177 - 09/19/07 07:52 AM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
swingal Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/05
Posts: 1094
Loc: England
The first thing to remember is the Digital is say, twice as easy to play as an acoustic. Comparing new instruments.

When I first tried a low level digital, I was staggered at the simplicity of the key fingering and the utter lack of touch sensitivity.

Now I have a Kawai ES4 and its fine with some level of feel to the keys.

Nonetheless I would never put a Digital above an Acoustic as far as creative fingering goes and the subsequent vibes to the ear. It seems there is lacking in the digital, the timbre of an acoustic. Sorry to sound critical but I play both. I can practice silently on the Kawai and with sterio head phones get a nice sound.

Back to your question. As I assume you will have to play acoustic for your exams and at your teacher's piano? So you will realize the difference.

As to what acoustic upright you would get for $1000 I have no idea for America. I would think with luck you would get a playable instrument. If I were in your position I would think I would get something playable here. At that price you would have to search around. If you live near a big city so much the better. And if you don't expect to have a smart casing then don't give up.

Write a post on the Piano Instrument forum and see what they say for $1,000.

Good luck,


#684178 - 09/19/07 03:43 PM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
Gyro Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/24/05
Posts: 4534
I see several possibilities. One is to
just keep using your P70. This is modeled
on the sound and action of a concert grand
piano--vastly better, in theory, than
any upright, so maybe you're being
a little too critical of it.
Another is to use the vol. control knob.
Each setting of the vol. control gives
you essentially a new piano. Turning
it higher than your usual setting gives you
something like a more expensive piano,
since you can get a bigger sound with
the same physical effort. Turning it
lower than usual gives you something like
a grand piano with a heavy action,
since you've got to use more effort
to get the same sound--this is great
for building technique, your fingers
should then fly on your teacher's upright.

Another option is to get another digital
that's very different from your current
one. This would be beneficial because it
would give you another perspective on playing--
like the difference between the P70
and your teacher's acoustic upright has made
you consider what playing is all about.
After you've played on both digitals
you'll begin to see that keyboard playing
involves certain fundamental elements
that are independent of whatever keyboard
instrument you happen to practice on--
this is why a good organist who has
never played the piano can switch to
the piano with little trouble.

Still another option is to get whatever
acoustic piano the $1000.00 (US) can buy.
You can often get used acoustic pianos
for a bargain price, because people
get frustrated with playing and want
to get rid of their instrument at any
price. Thrift shops are a good hunting
ground for used acoustic pianos; they
often sell pianos for less than the
moving costs. But be advised that
an acoustic is no longer a maintenance-
free device, like a digital is. It needs
to be tuned several times a yr., and
today that can run as high as $150.00
per tuning. And it needs to be repaired
fairly frequently--sticking keys are
a common problem.

#684179 - 09/19/07 04:09 PM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8483
Loc: Ohio, USA
CP33 is better than P70, which is in the same league as P90, with 64-polyphony but without built-in speakers. P70 is only an entry level digital, with 32-polyphony and GHS action (not as good as GH action as on CP33).

anther option is P140, similar to CP33 but with built-in speakers. the best stage digital from Yamaha is CP300 though, but it would add another $500-700 to your budget.

#684180 - 09/19/07 04:37 PM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
Matahari Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/07
Posts: 63
Loc: CT
I think if you are patience, don't mind about low end pianos and don't care too much about color, cabinet look, etc, $1500 is probably doable for a slightly used chinese piano, assuming you like the sound.

About a couple months ago I found in craigslist, a few months old studio Bergmann for $1500 asking price (you could negotiate it lower) because the owner had to relocate to other state very soon. A dealer (out of town but not too far from where I live) is currently selling a 6 month old 45" Story n Clark for under $2000.

I, too, have limited budget. But I am maybe a bit picky, so I choose to stick with my Casio digital for awhile, and save some more to get a (hopefully) better piano. Gyro is right about the sound of digital piano being "decent". So far, I don't find any piano under $2500 that has better sound than my digital (didn't try the Bergmann nor the Story n Clark because I didn't like the cabinet).

#684181 - 09/19/07 04:50 PM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8483
Loc: Ohio, USA
he already has a low end digital - P70, and thus, he should be looking at something more decent and better than that; otherwise, what's the point to upgrade?

also, you don't want to get a cheap acoustic, such as a spinet or studio one, which is perhaps the worst piano you would want to play on. it doesn't make it any better than a P70.

#684182 - 09/19/07 05:22 PM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
Matahari Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/07
Posts: 63
Loc: CT

that's why, in my first paragraph, I specifically wrote "assuming you like the sound". I am not suggesting him to choose a piano that is worse than his digital. I also said, I myself haven't found any piano under $2500 that has better sound than my cheap digital (imo).

But again, maybe if he is not in a hurry and patience enough, he could get lucky and found something "decent" for him within his budget. Maybe a used piano somebody just want to get rid of, or something. A decent piano FOR HIM, doesn't have to be a decent one for me or you. It only means that he likes the piano (touch/action, tone, appearance, etc) better (if not much better) than his digital, and he feels that whatever amount he spend on that piano is worth it. If that piano turn out to be a spinet or a studio, or a 100 yr old piano, then be it! \:\) If he choose to save some more to get (hopefully) "more piano", then be it.

#684183 - 09/19/07 05:48 PM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8483
Loc: Ohio, USA
ok, Matahari, we have no disagreement on this.

#684184 - 09/20/07 02:21 AM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
savvyguy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/07
Posts: 35
Yes.. I do feel a lot of difference between my P70 and my teacher's 10yr old yamaha acoustic.. its pretty hard to control the volume on the acoustic i would say, because it seems like i always tend to use too much force on the acoustic - i.e. it diminishes my control skills.

I'm actually living in Singapore.. quoted USD prices because I thought that's the "standard" currency for easy conversion.. so any recommendations for the Singapore region?

yes Gyro, i usually put my P70 @ 85% volume level..just nice that it doesn't disturb my neighbours, but I just whack too hard on my teacher's piano..

As for tuning issues, it should be alright. it costs about 50SGD per tuning session. However, I'm still considered an amateur ( grade 2 abrsm ) for now.. so I don't really have enough expertise in choosing a good used acoustic.

Hmm, is the CP33 much better than the P70? Maybe I'd go down to the stores during the weekends to try it out. However, I think i'm still inclined towards acoustic, since control and touch is very important for my prepration to the exams.

I got another question though - is it true that the longer acoustic pianos are played/kept, the better they'd sound? assuming regular maintenance is done..

thanks for all the replies!

#684185 - 09/20/07 02:59 AM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
Matahari Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/07
Posts: 63
Loc: CT

did you try to post on this thread at Piano Forum?

They are all from Singapore. The last post I read, you could find a "decent" acoustic for $1600-$2600, not sure it was in US or Singapore dollar though.

Maybe you could get more help from there. Good luck and let us know if you found THE ONE \:\) .

#684186 - 09/20/07 03:19 AM Re: recommend piano with low budget..
savvyguy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/07
Posts: 35
Hi Matahari,

thanks for the referral! i'll try my luck over there.. although I just posted one in the general piano forum section..haha.


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