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Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible?

Posted By: Lakeside

Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 03:01 AM

I live in Beijing, China. 2012, I retired, to find a good piano teacher, started decades desire - to learn the piano, has been almost a year. In the future, I will have a few months per year to China's Hainan Island, to spend the winter, where warm and humid, for my cardiovascular and respiratory systems are very good. However, in the Hainan Island apartment because moisture and easily disturb the neighbors, inconvenient to use an acoustic piano. I was studying whether to choose a digital piano instead of an acoustic piano. By browsing on the internet, I am very interested in Kawai CA95, however, CA65/CA95 other pianos do not have to enter the Chinese market, I can not go and listen and try them. Hope to get your help, welcome any suggestions. Thank you!
(Excuse my bad english.)
Posted By: gvfarns

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 03:24 AM

Well, those CA-line Kawai's are among the best available digitals (along with some of the high-end Roland and Yamaha digitals and the Yamaha AvantGrands). If any digital piano can be a substitute for an acoustic, it's them. They have the added benefit of having been modeled after Shigeru-line Kawai grands, so the touch should be as similar to your acoustic as you will find among pure digitals. I own an older Kawai digital with wooden keys and it's quite similar to a Kawai grand I play regularly.

Digitals are obviously not exactly like acoustics--you will definitely notice differences and shortcomings--but they are wonderful substitutes and particularly suited to situations where you don't want noise to be an issue. I personally use my digital piano almost exclusively with headphones because I like to play at night after the kids go to bed. At the moment I don't actually have use for an acoustic at home because I would never get the chance to play it without interference from my kids.

Another note: In this forum we are very discriminating and tend to gravitate toward the higher end models in our discussions, but in a pinch even the less expensive models are great for playing, especially on a limited basis, as you will on your trips. Of course, if you can afford it, the very best digitals, like the Kawai models you mention, really offer something above and beyond the entry level models.
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 05:18 AM

gvfarns,
Thank you for your reply. Your insights and experience makes me more convinced CA95 or AvantGrand should be a more ideal choice. If I choose CA95 (I really really like Shigeru sound and action), I have some concerns: First, this forum, some people have mentioned CA65/CA95 not play pp, even if it is slightly press a key, the start sound still be significant. At this point do not even like CA63/CA93; Secondly, if a few months, or even six months, just use the CA95, can not touch the acoustic piano, will seriously affect the effectiveness of my learning the piano and processes.
Posted By: Clayman

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 05:46 AM

Hi Lakeside,

I'm an owner of the CA-95 and coincidentally, I had a friend, who was/is a long time (upright) piano player, come to my place yesterday to try out the Kawai and he very much liked the key action -- he even said it was the best action of any digital piano he has played so far, which was nice to hear. smile He also liked the sound of the piano (especially the bottom end, which sounded powerful with the soundboard sending vibrations to the rest of the piano) even though he thought the default "Concert Grand" piano sound was too soft (which is kind of paradoxical since Kawai piano sounds are usually on the brighter side of the spectrum). Anyway, he seemed happy with the "Upright Piano" sound we then selected. An evening well spent. smile

At any rate, I cannot comment on your first concern regarding pp playing as I'm not yet that far with my skills. As for the second concern -- I don't think playing the CA-95 exclusively without touching an acoustic piano can harm the effectiveness of your playing in general. After all, the key action of the CA-95 has been specifically designed to be as close to that of an acoustic (grand) piano as possible. If anything, it may even improve your playing.

In any case, you'd be best served to visit your local Kawai dealer and get the hang of the key action and sound yourself. That is really the best you can do. smile

Good luck with your search! smile
Posted By: Thalanor

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 05:55 AM

A couple of months ago I play tested the CA95 (which you can read about here: Comparing the CA65/95, CLP-470/480, and the NU1 ).

If it weren't for the looks (my wife prefers ebony polish), I would have gone with the CA-95 without any hesitations. I would also have considered the CS10 which is a CA-95 in a K-2 cabinet, but those pianos are only starting to be rolled out this year and are not widely available as of yet.
Posted By: stng

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 08:02 AM

Hi Lakeside

I've spent a bit of time on the CA65, which has an identical key action to the CA95. I have no problem playing pp. The sound was very good and the touch was excellent--quite representative of a Kawai small grand I spent some time on as well. Good practice substitute for an acoustic in my opinion where an acoustic isn't feasible. For what it's worth, I preferred the action on the Kawai to the Yamaha NU1, although this is based on initial impressions of the NU1 only.

Posted By: semo

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 12:07 PM

The CA65/CA95 keyboard action is very good. Very close to the Kawai EX concert grand. The sound is enjoyable, especially on the CA95 with the soundboard.

However, I imagine that the soundboard will have the same problem with humidity as an acoustic piano--though maybe not as much as there are other speakers other than the soundboard in the CA95.
Posted By: semo

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 12:11 PM

Originally Posted by Lakeside
some people have mentioned CA65/CA95 not play pp, even if it is slightly press a key, the start sound still be significant. At this point do not even like CA63/CA93;


You have to imagine that having a 7' grand in your living room, playing pp or ppp might take some efforts. Again I think playing pp on the CA95 is easier than on the CA65, not sure if other people have the same experience.
Posted By: sandalholme

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 04:57 PM

For various reasons I recently sold my RX2 and bought a Kawai ES7. I have played acoustic pianos all my life. I too am retired. A friend has a CA95, which I have played and is superior to the ES7 - action and sound. However, I am very happy with the ES7, having spent some time adjusting to the touch and creating a sound that I am happy with. I see no reason why you should not enjoy playing a CA95 for some months of the year. If you do buy a CA95 or something similar, you may also consider using a software piano: these provide the cabinet/string resonance that DPs are weak on and hearing a good sound also psychologically creates the illusion - to a degree - of playing an acoustic piano.
Posted By: McBuster

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 06:01 PM

The soundboard is not made of spruce planks but of vinyl covered plywood. For the price, it can not be made of solid wood. It should be very stable dimensionally unless immersed in water directly.
Posted By: Dan Clark

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 08:07 PM

Lakeside,

Hi. I'm going to provide some CA95 feedback from a beginner's perspective. I have a Casio PX-850. It is hooked to good computer running Galaxy Instruments Vintage D software piano.

About four weeks ago, I happened to be near the local Kawai dealer and decided to drop in and see why everyone was raving about the CA95. When I tried it, it sounded great. OTOH, since I have Vintage D virtual piano software, I didn't expect the CA95 to sound substantially better using headphones. And I was pretty much correct. OTOH...

I also expected the CA95 to play much better that my Casio if I was an advance player. However, since I'm a beginner, I didn't think I'd notice much difference. How wrong I was. My intent was to play it for maybe 5 minutes. After more than 30 minutes, I finally stopped. The CA95 keyboard action was incredibly good. Even a rank amateur like me could tell the difference.

The amazing part is that *I* played better on the CA95 than I ever had on my Casio. I can't tell you why. The action was sooooo nice that it took a massive effort to control my urge to whip out my credit card and tell the salesman, "Gimme, gimme, gimme!" smile My goal is to get CA95 or maybe a VPC1 when my skill level justifies the expense.

If you can possibly find one to test-play, that's a good idea. That said, you'll probably not find too many other pianos that play and sound as the CA95.

Good luck with your decision.

Regards,

Dan.
Posted By: JFP

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 09:40 PM

I wonder what the Physispiano V100 will do. In terms of price, delivery date a d Acoustic realism (sound system and projection). Could be a contender to ca-95/ CS10 and hp507 / lx15 .
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 10:23 PM

Hi Clayman,
Thank you for your letter, as well as relevant and pertinent observations. My doubts are gradually being eliminated. Unfortunately, I can not come into contact with CA95 in Beijing or other brands of high-end digital piano, so I can only listen to widespread use of these or similar digital piano's friends experience and opinions. Thank you very much!

Lakeside
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 10:41 PM

Hi Thalanor,
I read your post (which you can read about here: Comparing the CA65/95, CLP-470/480, and the NU1 ), Those opinions, of great help to me,"I noticed that CA-65/95 and the HP-505/507 had the same feel respectively. However, they both felt enough like a real piano for me that it did not bother me.The touch felt lighter than some of the cheaper/older accustic pianos but not quite as light as a grand piano. Beyond that I couldn't tell more. For me they felt responsive enough. A couple of small things to notes on the keyboard: I tried the pianos out with the sound off to hear just how the keyboard action sounds. I noticed that the Roland action is slightly louder compared to the Kawai. Both pianos had their own version Ivory-feel keys that served their purpose.” I like to see. To tell you the truth, I for action attention to high to voice concerns.
Lakeside.
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 10:59 PM

Hi stng,
Thanks for the advice. I have no problem playing pp.. "This is the first I see very positive results. However, "Good practice substitute for an acoustic in my opinionwhere an acoustic isn't feasible. For what it's worth, I preferred the action on theKawai to the Yamaha NU1, although this is based on initial impressions of the NU1only". I didn't quite understand (forgive my English). You mean -- morerecommended Yamaha NU1, it has better action and touch. My understanding of?
Thanks again!
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 11:22 PM

Hi semo,
Do you think "The CA65/CA95 keyboard action is very good. Very close to the Kawai EX concert grand". This is really let me be overjoyed! Soooo thanks (write like this, right?)! Although I have no chance to play EX, but, I tried SK5.
Wet for the soundboard effect, I think it is easier than for the overall structure of the acoustic piano is accepted.
Thank you very much!
Posted By: Vid

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/19/13 11:44 PM

Originally Posted by Lakeside

Wet for the soundboard effect, I think it is easier than for the overall structure of the acoustic piano is accepted.


You must really like it! (500th post) laugh
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 12:02 AM

Hi sandalholme,
The RX2 is a very good grand piano. When I was young, without conditions and opportunities to learn the piano. But, I am eager to appreciate classical music have been half a century. In the charming piano timbre, even playing a chord is pleasant.Because of this, as a beginner I should step in to buy a SK3, so far I am very happy and grateful (a little regret, why I did not break the budget to buy SK5?).
I appreciate your comments -- "there is no reason why you should not enjoy a yearfor a few months to play a ca95.". Especially about the software piano wonderfuleffect, it seems that I have to try.
Thank you!
Lakeside
Posted By: stng

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 12:04 AM

Lakeside

I meant the opposite. I prefer the CA65/95 action to the NU1 action. The CA65/95 action feels like a grand action, whereas the NU1 doesnt. Not surprising because the NU1 action is from a Yamaha upright. But it's based on maybe an hour on the NU1. I suggest trying wherever possible. From a sound perspective, I'm not sure I had a preference.

Simon
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 12:11 AM

Originally Posted by McBuster
The soundboard is not made of spruce planks but of vinyl covered plywood. For the price, it can not be made of solid wood. It should be very stable dimensionally unless immersed in water directly.

This is really a good news!
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 02:54 AM

Hi Dan,
Thank you for your detailed and very good suggestions. I'll go look for a testing opportunities, perhaps someone with CA95 friends, I am not sure. But it appears to me to go to seriously consider how to buy from abroad CA95 thing. And that magic Vintage D virtual piano software.
Lakeside
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 03:13 AM

Originally Posted by stng
Lakeside

I meant the opposite. I prefer the CA65/95 action to the NU1 action. The CA65/95 action feels like a grand action, whereas the NU1 doesnt. Not surprising because the NU1 action is from a Yamaha upright. But it's based on maybe an hour on the NU1. I suggest trying wherever possible. From a sound perspective, I'm not sure I had a preference.

Simon



Hi Simon,
After understand what you mean, so I am even more happy. I was there for the Shigeru Kawai sound preference.

Lakeside
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 09:51 AM

Originally Posted by JFP
I wonder what the Physispiano V100 will do. In terms of price, delivery date a d Acoustic realism (sound system and projection). Could be a contender to ca-95/ CS10 and hp507 / lx15 .


I first heard Physispiano V100, have yet to find information about its evaluation. But it is too expensive, € 6,700.
Posted By: JFP

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 10:32 AM

Where did you find that pricing info ? Couldn't find anything yet on pricing / availability...
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 11:24 AM

Originally Posted by JFP
Where did you find that pricing info ? Couldn't find anything yet on pricing / availability...

http://audioelectric.de/shop/produc...ml&XTCsid=3mv6jhjg9cad3bhn29hd479182
Posted By: Temperament

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 01:28 PM


To ppp playing: see in my just posted CA65 review:

Suggestions for getting more expressive pp

The majority of my tweaking is just as well valid for the CA95/CS10. (Same GF keyboard, sounds, feature set; external sounds and connectivety).
Posted By: JFP

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 01:50 PM

That's weird, because they also list the K4 physispiano for an extraordinary € 2999, whilst the factory listprice is € 2195 (street price usually lower). So the v100 will be expensive, but I doubt if it will be € 6700 when released. We'll see...

Regardless of the price, it seems to be a nice product and potentially could be better than the other current offerings in that range (lx15, cs10, etc). Of course we don't know that for sure yet...much depends on the sound projection; the Physis sound is already known.
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/20/13 02:34 PM

Originally Posted by JFP
the Physis sound is already known.

To be honest, I do not know the details of V100, sound and action is what? Can you provide a link? Thank you!
Posted By: Lakeside

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/21/13 12:34 AM

Hi Everyone,
Thank you to all of the opinions and suggestions. But I really want to hear a different or even contrary view, I think these comments make decisions for me is very important!
Posted By: Pedro_Henrique

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/21/13 01:26 AM

Look, If I were you,I would buy a good acoustic. Ok, it's difficult to have and take care of an acoustic, but, for developping good skills it's really important to study piano on a acoustic.
Posted By: Dan Clark

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/21/13 02:48 AM

Originally Posted by Pedro_Henrique
Look, If I were you,I would buy a good acoustic. Ok, it's difficult to have and take care of an acoustic, but, for developping good skills it's really important to study piano on a acoustic.

Pedro,

Why?

Dan.
Posted By: Pedro_Henrique

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/21/13 11:49 AM

Originally Posted by Dan Clark
Originally Posted by Pedro_Henrique
Look, If I were you,I would buy a good acoustic. Ok, it's difficult to have and take care of an acoustic, but, for developping good skills it's really important to study piano on a acoustic.

Pedro,

Why?

Dan.


Well, I play some good acoustics on the State Conservatory (a fine grand, and my teacher's acoustic upright) and I play a digital piano. The first thing is technique. I didn't play the CA95 yet, but, usually digital pianos doesn't allow you to get better in trills, or fast passages. And the second thing, is the sound. Digital Pianos can't really emulate acoustics of a Piano. Even the V-Piano is not able to it. When you play, there are very subtle differences in tones and colors, and when you play some Schumann (Album for the Young), or Prokofiev (Vision Fugitives, for example), or some Romantic or Modern pieces you have to really color your playing making differents tones that digitals can't make. I'm studying seriously because I want to graduate in Music Education... and the first thing my teacher asked me is: find a way to get an acoustic piano for you to study. And even if you don't want to be a professional teacher or performer, you'll realise that the acoustic is always superior.
Now I have to be clear: A good acoustic. Those crappy acoustics are very bad to technique as well. That's why my teacher always let me study in her own acoustic. She pays the tuning and keys regulation. And the grand piano from the auditorium, she pays for it too. The only problem I can only study 3 hours per week in those instruments, at best (one hour on the grand, and two hours in her room). That's why I'm looking for a good acoustic with a good price, because now I have to play one Sonata in F major from Haydn, one Nocturne in Eb major from Glinka, one Bach in a minor Sinfonia, one 'Ponteio' from Camargo Guarnieri, and the frist Cramer Study. Not an advanced repertoire yet, but... It demands a lit bif of study with conscious playing.
Posted By: Dan Clark

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/21/13 05:51 PM

Originally Posted by Pedro_Henrique
Originally Posted by Dan Clark
Originally Posted by Pedro_Henrique
Look, If I were you,I would buy a good acoustic. Ok, it's difficult to have and take care of an acoustic, but, for developping good skills it's really important to study piano on a acoustic.

Pedro,

Why?

Dan.


...

Now I have to be clear: A good acoustic. Those crappy acoustics are very bad to technique as well. That's why my teacher always let me study in her own acoustic. She pays the tuning and keys regulation. And the grand piano from the auditorium, she pays for it too. The only problem I can only study 3 hours per week in those instruments, at best (one hour on the grand, and two hours in her room). That's why I'm looking for a good acoustic with a good price...


Pedro,

Good points, well reasoned. In general, many people (including me) would agree that a good acoustic sounds and plays better that a DP disregarding cost, availability, location, and other real-life constraints. But there lies the rub - life tends to get in the way of achieving this. So...

How much does a good acoustic cost? Northwest Pianos (where I bought my Casio PX-850) has many good acoustics with prices ranging from $7,000 to $20,000 for a good upright and $20,000 to $200,000 for a good grand. They are lovely and play very nicely. But how many people can afford one?

Then there are space constraints. For people who prefer the sound of a grand (including "me"), where do you put it? A nice 7 foot grand takes up a lot of space.

How about portability? If you move around a lot (like the OP), a grand (any grand) is not too portable.

The biggest issue is the ability to play whenever you want to. Live in an apartment? Have a spouse who wants to watch TV or sleep when you want to practice? That could put a serious crimp in your ability to practice.

As you pointed out, the biggest problem is being able to use the piano whenever you want to. It's difficult now. After you graduate, what then? How do you maintain your skills until you can afford a decent acoustic and a place private enough to practice?

Taken in the context of real-life constraints which throw roadblocks in the way of piano proficiency, each of us have to make tough choices to find the right balance. IMO, finding the right balance of benefits and constraints is more important than a fixed standard of "better". At 66, I've been there, done that - wrestled with these issues many times.

FYI, here is the first decent, non-demo video I've seen of a fellow playing a CA95: http://youtu.be/ckoX6YYkzds . I'm interested in your opinion of the results.

Regards,

Dan.

p.s. I use Galaxy Instruments Vintage D with my PX-850. My computer is small, custom, and fast with two SSDs for system and storage. With a PreSonus VSL44 and 16GB of memory, latency is almost non-existant. Most importantly, the sound is FAR better than the native 850 sound. IMO, the future of DPs is a combination of sophisticated piano software from companies like Synthogy, Galaxy Instruments, and PianoTeq using keyboards like the Kawai VPC1. YMMV.
Posted By: Pedro_Henrique

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/21/13 09:22 PM

Originally Posted by Dan Clark

...
Taken in the context of real-life constraints which throw roadblocks in the way of piano proficiency, each of us have to make tough choices to find the right balance. IMO, finding the right balance of benefits and constraints is more important than a fixed standard of "better". At 66, I've been there, done that - wrestled with these issues many times.

FYI, here is the first decent, non-demo video I've seen of a fellow playing a CA95: http://youtu.be/ckoX6YYkzds . I'm interested in your opinion of the results.

Regards,

Dan.

p.s. I use Galaxy Instruments Vintage D with my PX-850. My computer is small, custom, and fast with two SSDs for system and storage. With a PreSonus VSL44 and 16GB of memory, latency is almost non-existant. Most importantly, the sound is FAR better than the native 850 sound. IMO, the future of DPs is a combination of sophisticated piano software from companies like Synthogy, Galaxy Instruments, and PianoTeq using keyboards like the Kawai VPC1. YMMV.


Look, I totally agree with you, I just gave you my opinion on the matter. And sure, you're right, unfortunately acoustic pianos are much more expensive, and then not pratical for playing out of home or playing out of theaters. But to be honest with you, there are some good acoustics here that cost a little less than digitals... a Kawai CA65 cost about 6.000 euro, and the CA95 7.000 euro with all taxes... and a good acoustic brazilian-brand cost aprox. 5.000 dollars. So for any student who seriously want to be a professional pianist and teacher, it's worth it.
Posted By: Clayman

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/22/13 05:51 AM

7,000 euro for a CA-95? I've got mine for 3,099.
Posted By: Pedro_Henrique

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/22/13 01:04 PM

Originally Posted by Clayman
7,000 euro for a CA-95? I've got mine for 3,099.


We pay a lot of taxes, almost for nothing because our government doesn't return it to the population in form of public service, and the instruments stores gain have a enormous profit also, so sometimes it really sucks being a brazilian. Sometimes I think of buying from international stores, the but the problem is that our government will try everything to stop us from having what we bought outside of Brazil. So what they do? They stop our things on the customhouse and make us pay almost the price we paid on the importation, or sometimes the same price... so in the end you paid almost twice the price you'd pay if you have bought it on a brazilian store.
Posted By: Michael_99

Re: Help! CA95 instead of an acoustic piano, feasible? - 07/22/13 05:48 PM

The reality is that to be a piano player, you have to practice. So you should buy a piano you can afford. Once you can play well enough to teacher of entertain for money, you can save for whatever piano you want.

If I was young I would buy what every piano I could afford. I grew up in trailer so there was no room for a piano of any size that existed in the 1050s, but today, you can put a digital under any bed for storeage, so almost everybody on the planet could afford 300 digital to be played and stored under their bed.

Because digitals are dirt cheap and most people who want to play the piano - have no idea how slow it is to become a piano player that probaby more pianos today are sitting around not being played than at any other time in history.



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