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Posted By: Ben Boule DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/08/15 04:06 PM
Looking for some recommendations here..

Background is I have a Kawai CN24. I have had tons of issues with tendonitis playing it. I am starting to figure out how to manage it and it's 90% healed, but I can't play the CN24 like I want to. I am actually talking to Kawai at this point about having a technician look at it just to eliminate the chance something is wrong. It's about a year old now and I don't notice it playing it, but it is starting to exhibit clicking and such in the center of the keyboard. I have been through a lot of different things to try and fix the issue, such as getting an adjustable bench and working a lot on my posture, etc..

I also have an AP on rental right now for about another 2 and a half months. The AP does not cause me tendonitis problems, or at least will not cause problems at the amount of practice time I could possibly put in. I am feeling dramatically better since playing on it instead of the CN24, but as soon as I go back to the CN24 I almost instantly start getting irritation. (As in 10 minutes is enough.) I was hoping when the rental period was up I was going to buy an AP. But we just got hit with a monster tax bill and had to look at the budget carefully and there is now way I'm going to be able to afford an AP in the next few years, and I'm unfortunately going to have to cancel lessons for a while too. There is no doubt the DP is superior for unobtrusive practice too.

I had thought this issue had something to do with the weighting of the CN24.. (It's about 60g down weight and 55g up weight.) But now that I have the AP in the house I don't think it is that. The AP is somewhere around 55g down weight with the pedal up, about 50g down weight with the pedal down, and the upweight is somewhere around 40g with the pedal up and down closer to 25-30g with the pedal down. (Very hard to measure the AP with the pedal up which is why I'm sure no one does it that way.) Anyway I think the higher weight on the CN24 is just more annoying once my arms already hurt.

Now that I have both in the house I think the issue is more to do with the way the key bottoms out, as this is again something pretty noticeably different than the AP. The Kawai action is not supposedly one that is supposed to bottom out hard if I read the posts here. (Mostly about the ES7) That is why I am looking into having my CN24 checked. If I play VERY carefully I can avoid hitting the bottom of the key travel on the CN24 and that might alleviate the irritation I get, but it is very hard to either play fast or forte without hitting the bottom of the key travel in a hard way. If the issue was weighting I think I would be screwed as all DPs seem to have pretty high weights but I think if the issue is the way the key bottoms out I may be able to find something.

But in any case if Kawai either a) Won't look at my CN24 or b) Someone looks at it and says it is fine I think my plan is going to be to try and sell the CN24 and look for another digital that might not cause irritation as that is something that I could afford to try and it might not even cost me much depending on what I could sell the CN24 for and what a cheaper DP might cost.

With all that said what are some cheaper DPs known to have a softer feel when the key bottoms out? It seems like Casio might be what I want to look for here. It's been a while but I was definitely impressed with some of the Casio models last year and would have gotten the PX-350 until I tried the CN24. At the time I bought the CN24 I wanted the higher weight of a console model to keep my son (toddler) from knocking the DP down. A year later that is not a concern as he is past that phase. I owned a Yamaha P-80 years ago with no problem but it sounds like Yamaha is not necessarily known for a soft "bottom out" feel.

I also realize from searching that the Kawai wooden actions might be an answer too as no one seems to complain about them and they mimic an AP more closely, but that is a step in the other direction towards spending lots of money so that is probably out.
Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/08/15 04:19 PM
Not unusual. I experience the same on some digital keyboards depending on how the action is designed. And I agree, it's the impact when the keys bottom out. Acoustic pianos seem to disperse this energy in a manner that is more forgiving to tendons and joints than some DPs.

It's unfortunate that you have to play one for some time and experience an injury to know if the action will work for you or not. Do you have the velocity curve set to deliver strongest attack with least amount of force?. Helps to an extent.

Younger players tend to be able to deal better since their bodies are more flexible. I never noticed anything like this prior to 42 or so

Take care of your joints and tendons. Make sure your posture is right, your technique is right, the key height and seat height are right and the instrument is right. Takes too long to recover from tendon and joint injuries and that's missed time at the beloved piano bench making music. Also check in with the doc and make sure nothing else is going on.

- Yamaha Avant Grand action does not do this to me. I have not tried it, but maybe some Kawai MP11 users can share how the GF action feels.

Posted By: Morodiene Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/08/15 04:26 PM
You should look into Yamahas too. Perhaps in the used market you can find a decent Clavinova if new ones are outside your budget.

Also, don't discount getting an acoustic upright used as well.

That bottoming-out problem can cause a lot of problems, I have that issue if I play too much on my Roland FP-7. It's not bad for short-term, but it can't be my main instrument. I am surprised you're having trouble with a Kawai though. The ones I've played do not have the hard bottoming out issue, but I haven't specifically played a CN24.
Posted By: David Farley Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/08/15 05:53 PM
I recall there was someone on the Music Player Forum a couple months ago who was having similar problems and ended up with a Yamaha CP40 because that particular GH action seemed to work for him. (He had the CP4 but the GH3 action was hurting his hands.) Best thing would just be to try a lot of different actions, if you can.
Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/08/15 07:34 PM
Doesn't sound like there is anything I can do with Kawai service, they recommended going to a store to play a different CN24/25/34/35. I don't think I'd be able to detect any difference other than the clicking on some keys.. now that I have clicking keys I am somewhat amused. Mine sound just like the ones people posted videos here for, but there is no way on earth you can hear that when the piano is on. (Maybe some people had it louder but it sounds the same to me.)

I will see what I can do. I could see maybe being able to trade it in on a Yamaha at the dealer I rented my AP from, but they might only do that if you buy an AP.

I guess I put it up on craigslist and see if I can move it before I turn the rental AP back in. That'd give me a few months to try some DPs out and see if I could find anything I like. I could drive to a guitar center a few days and just pick one particular DP and play it for 20 minutes and see what happens. As long as I didn't play a bunch of them in one sitting I'd probably be able to tell.
Posted By: peterws Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/08/15 09:41 PM
You might not be impressed by Yamaha`s cheapest, the GHS. But it is about the lightest and you can play easily without bottoming hard and still get good dynamics. I always liked the action of the ES7 and CN24 particularly. I don`t think Yamaha make too much stuff with that (GHS) action now. I`ve got arthriticky fingers, but no probs. So far . . .working a computer mouse if harder than playing. Good luck, man!
Posted By: 36251 Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/08/15 10:29 PM
Originally Posted by David Farley
I recall there was someone on the Music Player Forum a couple months ago who was having similar problems and ended up with a Yamaha CP40 because that particular GH action seemed to work for him. (He had the CP4 but the GH3 action was hurting his hands.) Best thing would just be to try a lot of different actions, if you can.
He ended getting rid of CP40 and bought another CP4 and never had the problem again. In the end he said it wasn't the CP4 causing the issues at that time.
Posted By: Charles Cohen Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/08/15 10:44 PM
Quote
. . . If I play VERY carefully I can avoid hitting the bottom of the key travel on the CN24 and that might alleviate the irritation I get, but it is very hard to either play fast or forte without hitting the bottom of the key travel in a hard way. If the issue was weighting I think I would be screwed as all DPs seem to have pretty high weights but I think if the issue is the way the key bottoms out I may be able to find something.


FWIW:

If you play like that -- stopping your finger from "bottoming-out" the key -- you are _guaranteed_ to worsen any stress problems you have. Think about it -- you have to accelerate the finger downward using the tendons in the palm of your hand, and then _decelerate it_ using the tendons on the top of your hand, so it doesn't "bottom-out" the key.

Whereas the person who hits the key normally just uses the tendons in the palm to accelerate -- the deceleration is handled by the felt underneath the key.

A question (sorry if it's been asked and answered):

. . . Do you have the DP set to maximum volume?

If not, _turn it all the way up_, and see if it's easier on your fingers.

. Charles

PS -- I concur that, for a really light action, the Yamaha GHS is a good choice. The high-end Roland's that I've played -- with the "Ivory-Feel-S" action, or the higher-grade PHA IV (not the low-end PHA IV) feel reasonably close to an acoustic piano, and might solve your problem.


Posted By: Kawai James Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 12:41 AM
Hello Ben,

I recall your raising the topic of tendinitis a few months ago, so I'm sorry to read that you are still experiencing issues when playing your CN24.

I don't believe the CN24's keyboard action is considered to have a 'hard bottoming-out' characteristic. The RH action design features cushioning at the main impact points in order to soften the bottoming and reduce noise.

As Kawai America have suggested, it may be worthwhile visiting your local dealer to play-test other CN models with the same/similar action for 10 minutes or so, to see if the tendinitis symptoms flare up. I would also recommend play-testing a selection of other digital pianos from the major manufacturers too.

If you find that the tendinitis reoccurring with other digital pianos, but do not experience any problems playing an acoustic, the best advice I can offer is to rent or purchase a good quality upright as funds allow.

Best of luck.

Kind regards,
James
x
Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 12:24 PM
First off thanks for all the help everyone.

Originally Posted by Charles Cohen
Quote
. . . If I play VERY carefully I can avoid hitting the bottom of the key travel on the CN24 and that might alleviate the irritation I get, but it is very hard to either play fast or forte without hitting the bottom of the key travel in a hard way. If the issue was weighting I think I would be screwed as all DPs seem to have pretty high weights but I think if the issue is the way the key bottoms out I may be able to find something.


FWIW:

If you play like that -- stopping your finger from "bottoming-out" the key -- you are _guaranteed_ to worsen any stress problems you have. Think about it -- you have to accelerate the finger downward using the tendons in the palm of your hand, and then _decelerate it_ using the tendons on the top of your hand, so it doesn't "bottom-out" the key.

Whereas the person who hits the key normally just uses the tendons in the palm to accelerate -- the deceleration is handled by the felt underneath the key.


I don't actually play this way. It was something I tried one night. On top of probably stressing the top of your arm (extensors) it takes a lot of concentration so it's not something worthwhile.

Quote

A question (sorry if it's been asked and answered):

. . . Do you have the DP set to maximum volume?


Yes in general these days. Most of the time I've had it I had it set to about 80-90% volume. At 100% the speakers start to distort a little, or at least not sound as good. Pretty much the same thing when using headphones. In general this does help somewhat.

Quote

PS -- I concur that, for a really light action, the Yamaha GHS is a good choice. The high-end Roland's that I've played -- with the "Ivory-Feel-S" action, or the higher-grade PHA IV (not the low-end PHA IV) feel reasonably close to an acoustic piano, and might solve your problem.


I'm going to go try a few out.. I'm not actually sure light is the answer. I think with the AP with the higher inertia due to the heavier keys I just relax before the key hits the bottom and the mass of the key keeps it moving. With lighter keys the key doesn't have the mass to keep moving so I feel like I have to drive it right into the stop.

Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 12:30 PM
Originally Posted by Kawai James
Hello Ben,
I don't believe the CN24's keyboard action is considered to have a 'hard bottoming-out' characteristic. The RH action design features cushioning at the main impact points in order to soften the bottoming and reduce noise.


I can tell it's there but it still feels like a hard hit, I can feel the vibration go right up to my elbow. You're right there is padding there, if you bottom the key and then press down really hard you can feel it give. But it is definitely a harder feeling than the real thing. I'm also wondering if the escapement simulation is causing me to hit the bottom of the travel harder.. although it is really almost impossible to feel the escapement unless you're playing quite softly.

Quote

As Kawai America have suggested, it may be worthwhile visiting your local dealer to play-test other CN models with the same/similar action for 10 minutes or so, to see if the tendinitis symptoms flare up. I would also recommend play-testing a selection of other digital pianos from the major manufacturers too.


There is one Kawai dealer, probably about 90 minutes drive each way. I went and tried the CN25 a few months ago, I doubt the CN24 is on the floor anywhere, it's not like there are that many Kawai dealers around. I could try this again, it's even possible the counterweights in the CN25 might actually help if they raise the inertia of the key (it's hard for me to believe they don't) but going that far to try stuff out is hard. There are Roland/Yamaha/Casio dealers within 30 minutes of where I live/work so that's going to be easier. FWIW I couldn't really feel the counterweights in the CN25 when I tried it anyway, but another try might be interesting as I know more what I'm looking for now.

Quote

If you find that the tendinitis reoccurring with other digital pianos, but do not experience any problems playing an acoustic, the best advice I can offer is to rent or purchase a good quality upright as funds allow.


If I had a bunch of free money I'd be going right out and getting something like a Yamaha U1 or B3 silent or the equivalent Kawai (I played a Kawai silent I really liked a few months ago). But the money is just not going to be there for a few years without sacrificing something more important like retirement savings.

In any case I do have a rental that I prepaid for another few months.
Posted By: Morodiene Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 01:04 PM
Ben, do you take lessons? I ask because your teacher should observe you playing on your digital. There may be some technical things you are doing differently when playing the DP that you don't do when playing an acoustic that could be making this an issue for you. I'm not saying there's not a problem necessarily with your DP, I'm just suggesting that it could be because no matter how loud, a digital piano cannot give the same resonance that an acoustic can. You may be seeking this sound out of your digital and overplaying to try and achieve that. It is worth looking into.

Also, there are tons of used acoustics for sale that are decent and won't cost you as much as the top of the line uprights will brand new. You can really get a good deal in the used markets if you are patient and do a little homework.
Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 03:10 PM
Yes I spent a ton of time with a teacher on this. But I'm going to have to stop taking lessons for a while, we have too much costs between taxes and child care right now for me to justify $200-250/month on lessons. (They are $60/hr where I live)

I'll just have to go try some stuff out. Looking at some videos of the Yamaha internals that seems really promising. Both the GH and GHS actions have tubular wire hammers that are bent into a U-shape. This looks like it must absorb a lot more vibration that the much heavier-duty looking Kawai and Casio hammers that look to be forged/cast/stamped into an I-beam shape. That and the fact I never had a hint of irritation when I owned my P-80 way back when make me want to try the Yamaha actions again.

I'll figure something out, it's just got to be relatively low cost. Lessons are actually pretty expensive on the spectrum of hobby costs.
Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 04:36 PM
Quote
I never had a hint of irritation when I owned my P-80 way back when


Indeed, indeed. Way back when probably being a factor here.
Frustrating, I know, all too well. Good luck finding the right match!
Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 04:58 PM
Yes way back when is an unfortunate factor. I was 25 when I got rid of the P-80, I was 36 last year when I got the CN24.
Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 05:22 PM
I'm 43 this year. Two early in my mind to not be as flexible, 36 is too early too. Have to adapt your technique and find a lighter action that doesn't bottom out so hard. Stretch before/after playing. And get checked out. Nothing else going on here? Arthritis? Ever had tendonitis before?. Tennis elbow?.
Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 05:41 PM
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
I'm 43 this year. Two early in my mind to not be as flexible, 36 is too early too. Have to adapt your technique and find a lighter action that doesn't bottom out so hard. Stretch before/after playing. And get checked out. Nothing else going on here? Arthritis? Ever had tendonitis before?. Tennis elbow?.


This particular injury was diagnosed as golfer's elbow.. I went to a hand specialist & then through to physical therapy last fall. I would say since about the end of February I have been totally healed.. but playing the CN24 brings back the muscle symptoms that started the whole thing last summer. At this point I just know if I started playing 30min-1 hour every day on it I would have tendonitis again in a month. My overall flexibility is very good, but I am definitely susceptible to tendonitis. I have had tendonitis in my ankle and knee before, although in no case was it ever as annoying as this piano related injury.
Posted By: spanishbuddha Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 05:54 PM
Originally Posted by Ben Boule
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
I'm 43 this year. Two early in my mind to not be as flexible, 36 is too early too. Have to adapt your technique and find a lighter action that doesn't bottom out so hard. Stretch before/after playing. And get checked out. Nothing else going on here? Arthritis? Ever had tendonitis before?. Tennis elbow?.


This particular injury was diagnosed as golfer's elbow.. I went to a hand specialist & then through to physical therapy last fall. I would say since about the end of February I have been totally healed.. but playing the CN24 brings back the muscle symptoms that started the whole thing last summer. At this point I just know if I started playing 30min-1 hour every day on it I would have tendonitis again in a month. My overall flexibility is very good, but I am definitely susceptible to tendonitis. I have had tendonitis in my ankle and knee before, although in no case was it ever as annoying as this piano related injury.

I had severe golfers elbow last year, caused by playing tennis (poor technique topspin forehand) and I had to stop for 3 months which I was really reluctant to do, but the joy had gone. My point is that at no time did I feel it when playing piano, so maybe Morodienne has a point.

I think I may have posted previously on your older thread but IMHO DP actions, none of which have escapement (other than simulated and apart from the AG's and NU1), may cause problems to those prone to joint or tendon injuries, due to not only perhaps the bottoming out, but the jarring of the hammer stopping and its energy reflected back through the key and transferred to the fingers; this does not happen directly with an acoustic action. So, be prepared to stick with an acoustic action. It worked for me but of course YMMV.
Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 06:46 PM
There is truth here, I do not experience these issues on my acoustic, nor on any that I play at my weekly gigs, nor on the Avant Grand N3.
Posted By: dewster Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 07:55 PM
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
There is truth here, I do not experience these issues on my acoustic, nor on any that I play at my weekly gigs, nor on the Avant Grand N3.

It may be seen as heretical to say this, but the DP industry could probably use a good class-action lawsuit. Injuring people is no joke. My wife is fine on APs, and keyboards with no hammer action, but gets tends to get injured on DP hammer actions. Like spanishbuddha, it's my belief that the lack of escapement reflects too much of the hammer rebound energy back into the fingers. Outside of the AG and similar, and the VAX kickstarter, no DP hammer action I'm aware of has anything like real escapement, just a simple compound lever for key & hammer.

How keys feel when they "bottoming out" is due to a variety of factors, including key cushioning, hammer cushioning, hammer attitude, hammer lever ratio, whether the hammer has any free play after launch, etc.
Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 08:56 PM
I can't seem to find a good video of the inside of the Casio action but seeing the videos of the Kawai action & Yamaha actions it really looks like the Yamaha is both more padded, has more free play, and is more likely to absorb some of the vibration since the hammer is more like a bent wire. The pictures of the Roland actions I've seen look more like Kawai/Casio. Some of the GHS repair videos make it look like there is a lot of play in there.

That said maybe that is why they feel less precise than the Kawai ones.. at the time last year when I tried the CN24/34 I thought they were hugely better than the Yamaha GH/GHS actions.

My guess is too many people who get hurt on these just quit.. if you quit you're not going to care about a class action lawsuit. I'm really close to just forgetting about the whole piano thing and do no music for a year and maybe then try something totally different like guitar.

I'll see.. I have to wait a few days of no playing on even the AP as I manage to irritate things again the last few days fooling around on the CN24. My guess is I can figure this out just hitting some keys with the sound off if I can get in to a store.
Posted By: emenelton Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 09:25 PM
Originally Posted by Ben Boule
I can't seem to find a good video of the inside of the Casio action but seeing the videos of the Kawai action & Yamaha actions it really looks like the Yamaha is both more padded, has more free play, and is more likely to absorb some of the vibration since the hammer is more like a bent wire. The pictures of the Roland actions I've seen look more like Kawai/Casio. Some of the GHS repair videos make it look like there is a lot of play in there.

That said maybe that is why they feel less precise than the Kawai ones.. at the time last year when I tried the CN24/34 I thought they were hugely better than the Yamaha GH/GHS actions.

My guess is too many people who get hurt on these just quit.. if you quit you're not going to care about a class action lawsuit. I'm really close to just forgetting about the whole piano thing and do no music for a year and maybe then try something totally different like guitar.

I'll see.. I have to wait a few days of no playing on even the AP as I manage to irritate things again the last few days fooling around on the CN24. My guess is I can figure this out just hitting some keys with the sound off if I can get in to a store.


What does your piano teacher say about this?
Posted By: dewster Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 10:57 PM
One thing that might possibly make DP hammer actions more injurious is the way they tend to stick all the sensors on the hammer. This is good for sensing final hammer velocity, but maybe not so good for sensing key position unless there is very little hammer free play.
Posted By: Morodiene Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/09/15 11:14 PM
So why aren't you contacting Kawai to get it checked out (or did I miss something there)? If it is in fact an issue with the instrument, it is worth fixing and getting in working order.

By the way, I'm pretty sure that the reason most students quit is that it's harder than they expect.
Posted By: bennevis Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 12:07 AM
Originally Posted by dewster
Injuring people is no joke.

Let's stop blaming the tools. Or, to put it another way, the bad musician blames his piano.

There're many, many more people playing DPs than APs today. How come they don't all get injured?

BTW, the list of well-known classical concert pianists who have been injured playing their, er, Steinways (which I believe are APs, not DPs) is legion - Gary Graffman, Leon Fleisher, Michel Béroff, Murray Perahia.........but they don't blame their APs.

And yes, most people who stop playing do so because they simply can't hack it, not because they get injured.

Posted By: emenelton Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 12:41 AM
Ben,

I tried to mention a piano teacher and got ignored. Now that bennevis has gone all Thor on this thread I thought I might be a little more clear.
Do you have a piano teacher?
Has your piano teacher been to your studio and watched how you play your CN24 and assessed what may be the issue?
Digitals can really cause you to attack the piano funny.
Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 01:31 AM
Sheesh, bennevis.

I'm guessing the guns came out at the notion that DPs are exclusive to causing injury, which is of course not exclusively the case.

However, there is a valid point (and perhaps Dewster distracted from it with cries for class action law suits - which we should all be quite used to from Dewster by now! ha ha ha). The point is that there is very little consistency in the design of the actions we are seeing in these new digital instruments (as opposed to acoustic actions that have a lot of similarity due to refinement of the design over many years). That being said, it has only been suggested that there are perhaps some that do not diffuse the energy put into them in as forgiving a manner as others which is entirely possible and is something to take into consideration when choosing an instrument. No different than selecting this acoustic vs. that one due to feeling of the action which all players do (amongst other factors of course, like sound!).

Yes, poor technique is always to be watched for and there is a reason to study from an experienced teacher in person, but it's not a cut and dry issue. The fact of the matter is that, in the case of concert pianists and other professional musicians (athletes and trades that require repetitive motion), it has much more to do with a myriad of factors that doctor's don't fully understand and none of them can be discounted.

There is tendonitis vs. tendonosis vs. carpal tunnel
osteoarthritis vs. (heaven forbid) rheumatoid arthritis
focal dystonia or what some people call piper's palsy
simple back pain, neck pain, etc.
allergies, deficiencies, all sorts of genetic and autoimmune disorders.
The list actually goes on and on.
For musicians these maladies are our worst nightmare and always in the back of our mind. How long will I be able to play?

There is a price to pay for playing well (countless hours at the bench), and as we are only starting to understand, it's not talked much about amongst professional players because it's embarrassing and difficult for a musician to admit they could be at a career ending moment or at the very least, not as capable as they once were and less able to compete for work.

We can't all play forever. It's sad, but the truth.

But, if you were able to play longer or to continue to play with less likelihood of injury because you had addressed technique, your health, and your choice of instrument/action... aren't these all things worth considering?
Posted By: emenelton Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 01:42 AM
yes but does the op have a teacher or not?
and if not, might the suggestion to have a professional assess and tutor the op at his instrument be considered a priority by those that have Mr. Boule's best interest in mind?
Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 02:26 AM
Hmmm, I was under the impression that he wasn't a beginner, but now reading back maybe I got confused with this thread and one of the many others that pop each day. So, I agree with you. It's a valid question, of course. We really should know for certain if technique is a major contributing factor.

I didn't think anyone in the thread was a salesman (I'm certainly not) but I may be wrong. I guess you never know. Kawai James doesn't hide the fact he works for Kawai, he's generally a pretty fair fellow. Perhaps you could interpret his post as a little bit of damage control for something starting up like, "the CN24's action has a hard bottoming out".
Posted By: emenelton Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 02:45 AM
It just seems that the problem could be bad technique with the CN24.
Posted By: Kawai James Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 02:46 AM
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
Kawai James doesn't hide the fact he works for Kawai, he's generally a pretty fair fellow. Perhaps you could interpret his post as a little bit of damage control for something starting up like, "the CN24's action has a hard bottoming out".


No, not at all. In my opinion, the RH actions (RH/RHII/RHIII) do not have a 'hard bottoming out' characteristic.

Kind regards,
James
x
Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 12:52 PM
Not much point in continuing to respond to this if people are going to come in and make hostile remarks without actually reading what I wrote.

YES I have a teacher.
YES I have contacted Kawai.
YES I have worked on this extensively for almost the past year with my teacher.
NO my teacher doesn't even think I play with much tension.

Maybe I'm going to open my CN24 up and take a look at it since Kawai wasn't interested. It'd be hilarious if it turns out there is something glaring like a rubber strip that wasn't put in during assembly. But it any case I won't ever be playing it again at this point.
Posted By: emenelton Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 01:14 PM
Ben,

If it were mine, I am sorry. To me digitals can cause a person to develop funny habits. With all the back and forth (sorry i do see the mention once I went back again) a teacher was never mentioned.
I noticed you got rid of the 80 years ago an were without a DP for a long time.
To me that is significant.
Having your teacher come to your practice space and assess your technique at the CN and play it is a good step.

Chris
Posted By: David Farley Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 02:20 PM
Hi Ben - one thing I've wondered about. Acoustics are just naturally loud. Louder than most people think. Is it possible that there's a difference in volume between your digital and an acoustic that you're subconsciously compensating for when you play? I know this idea has come up here in the past in other threads, so it's not original to me.
Posted By: Morodiene Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 03:46 PM
Originally Posted by Ben Boule
Not much point in continuing to respond to this if people are going to come in and make hostile remarks without actually reading what I wrote.

YES I have a teacher.
YES I have contacted Kawai.
YES I have worked on this extensively for almost the past year with my teacher.
NO my teacher doesn't even think I play with much tension.

Maybe I'm going to open my CN24 up and take a look at it since Kawai wasn't interested. It'd be hilarious if it turns out there is something glaring like a rubber strip that wasn't put in during assembly. But it any case I won't ever be playing it again at this point.


Ben, you had said you contacted Kawai but didn't elaborate on their response. I would keep at it with them until you are satisfied. At the very least, they can send out a service person to check it out. That is what I meant by my post, sorry for not being more clear.

I hope my posts weren't received as attacks. Most of us are trying to help, we don't know all the details or need more information to offer advice.

Often times, it is just a person's technique the is the problem, but I have personally experienced the issue you seem to be having (with a different DP). So let's all assume that it's not a technical problem and it is in fact an issue with the CN24.

Has this always been a problem, or has it just gotten worse over time?
Posted By: dewster Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 05:33 PM
Originally Posted by bennevis
Let's stop blaming the tools. Or, to put it another way, the bad musician blames his piano.

An argument which assumes all players have all the time, energy, expertise, enthusiasm, education, and money to make good choices for themselves. They don't. Nobody does.

I'd be surprised if many / most players here weren't more or less forced at one point or another in their careers to practice / perform for extended periods on a particular DP. A lot of this doesn't come down to free choice.

In this day and age, those who manufacture products on which they *know* that people get injured can't run around acting clueless. They should be aware of the risks to injury, help their customers become more aware of them, and obviously be doing whatever they can within reason to minimize them. To not do so is to behave irresponsibly.

And manufacturing a less injurious action might be a good marketing angle.
Posted By: jimb100 Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 06:39 PM
Originally Posted by dewster
Originally Posted by bennevis
Let's stop blaming the tools. Or, to put it another way, the bad musician blames his piano.

An argument which assumes all players have all the time, energy, expertise, enthusiasm, education, and money to make good choices for themselves. They don't. Nobody does.

I'd be surprised if many / most players here weren't more or less forced at one point or another in their careers to practice / perform for extended periods on a particular DP. A lot of this doesn't come down to free choice.

In this day and age, those who manufacture products on which they *know* that people get injured can't run around acting clueless. They should be aware of the risks to injury, help their customers become more aware of them, and obviously be doing whatever they can within reason to minimize them. To not do so is to behave irresponsibly.

And manufacturing a less injurious action might be a good marketing angle.


How much "less injurious" can they make it? We have 1 person, with a history of tendonitis in other body parts, who developed tendonitis in his hands. But it went away with rest.

Is the forum flooded with people who have had the same negative experience with digital pianos? Clearly, not the case.

Although dps are vastly more popular than acoustics, I would expect many more instances of injury to be reported if they were badly designed and causing injury.

While I understand that as an acoustic piano purist your job is to search out any potential negative associated with digital piano and blow it out of proportion, in this case you're barking up the wrong tree.
Posted By: Bellicapelli Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 07:15 PM
My personal 2 cents: there are tons of people out there playing these dp's. A lot of them are conservatory students practicing for hours a day, and buying digital just because they have to practice for hours, even at night. And Kawai happens to be one of the most reputable ( and thus sold ) brands.

If it had a distinct problem with it's actions, all these people would be first in line to suffer injuries, much more and earlyer than hobbyists. And this i say regarding the "class action" thing.

I understand the thread opener's problem though, and read it with interest. But understand it more like a personal incompatibility, possibly with just Kawai products, and follow it with interest, since it could teach something mkre detailed about actions.

Personally, i'm not sure a lighter action should be expected to necessarily relief the problem. To me it could worsen it. The lighter the action, the harder you could bottom out.
Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 07:49 PM
All this defensive talk...

It is still possible there is just something wrong with my CN24. Kawai apparently thinks it is normal for it to feel harder on your hands than an acoustic. (That is basically what I was told by support when they told me to go try another CN-class DP, I have, and I know they feel like this..)

I am not exactly "prone" to tendonitis. I got it in my foot once when I was running ~30 miles a week and I've had it in my knee when I was biking 200+ miles a week. All WAY easier to manage than this piano related injury has been. I could do 50+ pushups without any complaints from my arms/wrists when I bought the CN24.

I think the RHII action just isn't the one for me. I went and played a PX-350 for about an hour at lunch today. There are lots of things I'm not crazy about (it sounds like crap compared to the CN24), but I don't think the Casio action aggravates my hands at all. It's got more of a "bounce" at the bottom of the key travel when you hit it hard and it is more forgiving about relaxing your hands and letting the key rise a little (just like an acoustic) in comparison to my CN24. The weighting is definitely less and that took a minute to get used too, but not long, and it repeats every bit as well as the CN24 and I had no problem bringing out dynamics.

With an hour of playing I should be in misery right now, and I'm not, my arms feel perfectly fine. I've never even once managed to play the CN24 for an hour.
Posted By: emenelton Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 07:57 PM
I have the PX5s and like the hammer dynamics, it is just like you say - a nice bounce. I had the ES6 as well, which is a little like your CN24, it's kind of like a light spinet.
I always try to encourage the PX5s over the PX350, you can find for less than full boat if you look and it has some upgradeable piano patches.
Posted By: Ben Boule Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 08:15 PM
I've never seen a PX5S. It might be fun to play around with that stuff but I think I want speakers. The PX-350 speakers didn't sound good in the big music store but they might be fine in my house.

I took my Sony MDR-7506s.. the PX-350 sounded good through those although not very loud even at max volume.

Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 08:28 PM
I don't agree entirely with the conclusions being drawn here. There just isn't enough information. You just can't state that all DP (or AP) actions are comfortable and safe to play on for all people. To agree with that notion as truth assumes that people who post here add up to the majority of people that play (they don't). It assumes that people who do play and experience discomfort are comfortable with sharing their ordeals in a public forum (they aren't). It assumes that people who do play and have had pain sometime afterward have figured out there is a correlation.

It isn't just todays poster, this question comes up often enough on the forum. I myself don't play on some keyboards any longer because I've found a direct correlation. And I've been on APs and DPs with many teachers since 1976. It would be more reasonable to conclude work related repetitive stress injuries are real. Musicians aren't immune, in fact it's common, but there are reasons they don't enjoy to discuss it. The motions we make on the tools we use are directly involved. Some tools are built better and more comfortable to use than others - be it a keyboard action or a hammer, a jack hammer or a computer keyboard. Once an issue crops up you have to address it on all fronts. Good technique, warm up and cool down routines, healthy lifestyle, and, yes, being picky about your tool.
Posted By: emenelton Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 08:35 PM
Originally Posted by Ben Boule
I've never seen a PX5S. It might be fun to play around with that stuff but I think I want speakers. The PX-350 speakers didn't sound good in the big music store but they might be fine in my house.

I took my Sony MDR-7506s.. the PX-350 sounded good through those although not very loud even at max volume.



The PX5S is just the big brother to the PX350. It has some custom Piano Patches- third party, that maximize the Privia sound.
Posted By: dewster Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 09:19 PM
Originally Posted by jimb100
How much "less injurious" can they make it?

Good question. Perhaps they could start with at least admitting that it's a possible issue for some, listing danger signs and the like. That would be the responsible thing to do. Often by the time real pain starts one is looking at an extended recovery period.

Originally Posted by jimb100
While I understand that as an acoustic piano purist your job is to search out any potential negative associated with digital piano and blow it out of proportion, in this case you're barking up the wrong tree.

I'll cop to being a crank when DPs can't cash the checks their ad departments have written, but beyond that I have no clue what you're talking about.
Posted By: Morodiene Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/10/15 11:46 PM
Originally Posted by dewster
Originally Posted by jimb100
How much "less injurious" can they make it?

Good question. Perhaps they could start with at least admitting that it's a possible issue for some, listing danger signs and the like. That would be the responsible thing to do. Often by the time real pain starts one is looking at an extended recovery period.
Are you serious? There are many people who buy this DP and don't have any problems with it. Not every instrument is right for every person - AP or DP. That's what this thread amounts to.

Posted By: bennevis Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 12:54 AM
Originally Posted by Morodiene
Originally Posted by dewster
Originally Posted by jimb100
How much "less injurious" can they make it?

Good question. Perhaps they could start with at least admitting that it's a possible issue for some, listing danger signs and the like. That would be the responsible thing to do. Often by the time real pain starts one is looking at an extended recovery period.
Are you serious? There are many people who buy this DP and don't have any problems with it. Not every instrument is right for every person - AP or DP. That's what this thread amounts to.


I don't own a Steinway - can't afford even a 150-year-old model with all strings broken - but surely they have a disclaimer that every purchaser must sign?

Along the lines of: "You play this great instrument at your own risk - remember, many virtuoso pianists have crippled their hands playing it. You could be next. We take no responsibility whatsoever. Buy at your own risk."

If all DP manufacturers do the same, then (hopefully) they will be safe from the clutches of the lawsuit lawyers.....
Or maybe not.
Posted By: jimb100 Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 12:55 AM
Originally Posted by dewster
Originally Posted by jimb100
How much "less injurious" can they make it?

Good question. Perhaps they could start with at least admitting that it's a possible issue for some, listing danger signs and the like. That would be the responsible thing to do. Often by the time real pain starts one is looking at an extended recovery period.

Originally Posted by jimb100
While I understand that as an acoustic piano purist your job is to search out any potential negative associated with digital piano and blow it out of proportion, in this case you're barking up the wrong tree.

I'll cop to being a crank when DPs can't cash the checks their ad departments have written, but beyond that I have no clue what you're talking about.


Meat, eggs, butter, nut, ice cream, fish, dogs, cats, bicycles, cars, pianos, guitars, clothing, etc.

The point is that someone will have a negative experience with anything.

Do you want 'class action' suits against everyone or should everything come with a warning label?

If everything comes with a warning label do they retain any meaning?

Do you want the same labels on acoustic pianos?
Posted By: Bellicapelli Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 06:44 AM
Originally Posted by Ben Boule
All this defensive talk...

It is still possible there is just something wrong with my CN24. Kawai apparently thinks it is normal for it to feel harder on your hands than an acoustic. (That is basically what I was told by support when they told me to go try another CN-class DP, I have, and I know they feel like this..)



Sorry, i'm personally not wanting to be defensive. I recognize you definitely are having a problem, definitely with kawai and not other brands, and it could even be due to a defective product, no doubt or no defense on this issue from my side.

My consideration was just agains the "class action" roar.

By the way, having a user particularly sensitive to subtle variations in different actions is really interesting, and i'm convinced can teach something more detailed on them, to a lot of people who are not noticing these variations at first sight.

Please go on and let know about your findings, i myself am still in the shopping phase, and interested in learning, be it a matter of a defective piece, or the effect of a design choice.

Ciao
Posted By: peterws Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 08:02 AM
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
I don't agree entirely with the conclusions being drawn here. There just isn't enough information. You just can't state that all DP (or AP) actions are comfortable and safe to play on for all people. To agree with that notion as truth assumes that people who post here add up to the majority of people that play (they don't). It assumes that people who do play and experience discomfort are comfortable with sharing their ordeals in a public forum (they aren't). It assumes that people who do play and have had pain sometime afterward have figured out there is a correlation.

It isn't just todays poster, this question comes up often enough on the forum. I myself don't play on some keyboards any longer because I've found a direct correlation. And I've been on APs and DPs with many teachers since 1976. It would be more reasonable to conclude work related repetitive stress injuries are real. Musicians aren't immune, in fact it's common, but there are reasons they don't enjoy to discuss it. The motions we make on the tools we use are directly involved. Some tools are built better and more comfortable to use than others - be it a keyboard action or a hammer, a jack hammer or a computer keyboard. Once an issue crops up you have to address it on all fronts. Good technique, warm up and cool down routines, healthy lifestyle, and, yes, being picky about your tool.


I used to get on this bike forum. Then somebody in the over 65 section mentioned he had a quadruple bypass op to look forward to . . . loads of messages of sympathy and condolences as you might expect.

Biggest surprise was the number of others in the same position! I questioned this in words to the effect of "Hang on! Biking`s supposed to make your heart healthy . . . ."

It was removed as being inappropriate.

The same thing applies to Prostate Cancer apparently. Mainly fanatical, long distance performance based riders are at risk. . .but I guess they`d rather pop their clogs half way up a mountain road than drag things out for years!

Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 02:39 PM
Indeed. Life isn't all roses and lollipops. And just because we can build it doesn't mean we don't find out 50 years later it isn't any good for us. Who wants to start up THAT list?. Haha. It's going to be a very long list!

I'll throw out two examples that come to mind quickly.

The Fairlight CMI with touch screen and stylus. What a wonderful revolutionary musical device they built. But hours of use by musicians rendered "gorilla arm". Inflammation and pain would set in and the arm would become unusable until it calmed down. It's any wonder we're back at touch screens again.

Cell phone texting. How taboo is it to discuss early onset of arthritis in teen's thumb joints?. The AMA might bring it up, but not very loudly, and it's never mentioned as a selling point in cell phone commercials. LOL

Regarding cyclists, I also understand many of them lose sensation in their 4th and 5th fingers due to prolonged grip of handle bars. Might be worth an entrepreneur's time to design a variation on bicycle handle bar.

But we make choices and deal with consequences. It's completely reasonable to believe that some action designs are better than others and speak better musically for some people as well as reduce risk for joint and tendon problems with excessive use (the type of use necessary to become good at playing).

Anyway, I don't see a difference here... It's ok to discuss these things because they are reality. Shushing people up or telling them they are crazy because the topic is unpleasant or could be a factor in sales isn't appropriate. Actually it would be opportunity for sales if particular actions proved to be best for this. No different than touting the GF or Avant Grand actions as being more AP like. Maybe a DP action could actually be "better" than an AP action with a little engineering focus.
Posted By: dewster Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 03:21 PM
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
It's ok to discuss these things because they are reality. Shushing people up or telling them they are crazy because the topic is unpleasant or could be a factor in sales isn't appropriate.

Some seem committed to ignoring plain facts, and to disparaging others for noticing. I think a lot of it is that we've been very carefully taught to loathe *all* legal recourse. That and a healthy dose of decline/death denial go a long way towards shutting down otherwise reasonable discussions.

For physical reasons APs pretty much have to be the way they are. The sky's the limit for DPs, so what's wrong with the goal of designing them to be less injurious?
Posted By: jimb100 Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 04:12 PM
Originally Posted by dewster
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
It's ok to discuss these things because they are reality. Shushing people up or telling them they are crazy because the topic is unpleasant or could be a factor in sales isn't appropriate.

Some seem committed to ignoring plain facts, and to disparaging others for noticing. I think a lot of it is that we've been very carefully taught to loathe *all* legal recourse. That and a healthy dose of decline/death denial go a long way towards shutting down otherwise reasonable discussions.

For physical reasons APs pretty much have to be the way they are. The sky's the limit for DPs, so what's wrong with the goal of designing them to be less injurious?


Its quite simple. Over many years and thousands of users, dps have proven to be safe and not cause injury to the vast majority when used as intended.

To imply otherwise is ridiculous.

Lets look at your other half truth. "For physical reasons APs pretty much have to be the way they are."

Sez who, besides you? Who can say what a massive engineering effort might make APs safe? They can certainly be made lighter. How many lives could be saved by a lighter AP? We've all seen acoustic pianos fall from second story windows, dropped by careless movers, to land on some hapless passerby. The latest, in the final episode 2 1/2 Men.

So what's the real danger here, is it dps or acoustic pianos? Mild tendonitis or death from above? Where is the real danger? You decide.
Posted By: bennevis Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 04:25 PM
Originally Posted by dewster

Some seem committed to ignoring plain facts, and to disparaging others for noticing. I think a lot of it is that we've been very carefully taught to loathe *all* legal recourse. That and a healthy dose of decline/death denial go a long way towards shutting down otherwise reasonable discussions.

For physical reasons APs pretty much have to be the way they are.

No, that's wrong.

This is a much safer AP:
http://youtu.be/Ep5fNEeoh74

Very light action, no stretching to reach 10th's or even 12th's (a common cause of AP injury - over-stretching in pianists with small hands), no need to thump to get crashing chords & octaves (another cause of injury).

And if it falls on your head, you'll just get a small bruise. Piano movers won't risk prolapsed discs trying to move it.

Even the next step up - the fortepianos of Mozart's time - are safer. They have narrower keys (again less stretching) and lighter action. And they don't tolerate thumping.
Posted By: dewster Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 04:32 PM
"It needed also a sort of athleticism of mind, an ability at one moment to make the most delicate use of logic and at the next to be unconscious of the crudest logical errors. Stupidity was as necessary as intelligence, and as difficult to attain." - George Orwell, 1984
Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 07:33 PM
Quote
Its quite simple. Over many years and thousands of users, dps have proven to be safe and not cause injury to the vast majority when used as intended.

To imply otherwise is ridiculous.


Dubious statement. I have no knowledge of any study being done specific to digital piano actions - it would be a difficult one indeed due to the wide variety of mechanisms used by many different manufacturers and models. There are however a growing number of studies that have been done on musicians' playing-related musculoskeletal injuries of which pianists are a major part and you would be shocked to realize how common it is. When interviewing professionals (who put in serious hours at the bench) do numbers like 49%, 64% and in some scenarios as much as 80% surprise us? Perhaps they do. But they shouldn't.

Anyway, point being. From my perspective, and YMMV, this isn't a digital vs. acoustic argument. This is a piano action argument (and yes, of course as already has been stated - technique, health, down-time, etc.). Why are some of us unwilling to seriously consider that not all actions are of the same calibre and that some may very well be more conducive to injury than others? The digital piano market sure believes that we are willing to pay more for designs that are more "acoustic-like" (longer, wooden keys with a different pivot point than compact designs, adding escapement, and let off, etc.). Ultimately should the goal of the engineers be to design more acoustic-like actions for DPs or should their focus be on reducing/dispersing impact energy? From that point of view, maybe they could build an action that is BETTER than an acoustic action.
Posted By: jimb100 Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 08:06 PM
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
Quote
Its quite simple. Over many years and thousands of users, dps have proven to be safe and not cause injury to the vast majority when used as intended.

To imply otherwise is ridiculous.


Dubious statement. I have no knowledge of any study being done specific to digital piano actions - it would be a difficult one indeed due to the wide variety of mechanisms used by many different manufacturers and models. There are however a growing number of studies that have been done on musicians' playing-related musculoskeletal injuries of which pianists are a major part and you would be shocked to realize how common it is. When interviewing professionals (who put in serious hours at the bench) do numbers like 49%, 64% and in some scenarios as much as 80% surprise us? Perhaps they do. But they shouldn't.

Anyway, point being. From my perspective, and YMMV, this isn't a digital vs. acoustic argument. This is a piano action argument (and yes, of course as already has been stated - technique, health, down-time, etc.). Why are some of us unwilling to seriously consider that not all actions are of the same calibre and that some may very well be more conducive to injury than others? The digital piano market sure believes that we are willing to pay more for designs that are more "acoustic-like" (longer, wooden keys with a different pivot point than compact designs, adding escapement, and let off, etc.). Ultimately should the goal of the engineers be to design more acoustic-like actions for DPs or should their focus be on reducing/dispersing impact energy? From that point of view, maybe they could build an action that is BETTER than an acoustic action.


The fact that there are not multiple studies of dps causing injury is, in itself, a proof. In our litigious society there would have been numerous studies and class action suits if dp actions were dangerous, which I find an absurd statement.

To state that professional players suffer injury is not surprising and I don't think in any way only related to the piano. The piano is what it is. If you want to play on it hour after hour you will likely injure yourself as you would using any other device known to man. Try swinging a baseball bat 6 hours a day, hitting a golf ball 6 hours a day every day. Playing guitar, swimming, the list could go on forever. Also, the body absorbs impact better when younger but there is a cumulative effect with everything. Some pain is just a factor of growing older. Trying to legislate away the cumulative effects of repetitive motion is stupid. Its up to the individual to determine what their body can withstand.

I will agree that slavishly mimicking the action of an acoustic piano makes no sense. Except that they don't seem to have found an improvement that is acceptable to the wide range of players that the current layout provides.

Who will push for innovation? Certainly no one associated with classical music as any change would affect the relationship between the instrument, the player and the sound. Those who create modern music have made some changes what with stage pianos, software pianos, etc. but the basic keyboard remains as it is most likely a design that just works.
Posted By: jimb100 Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/11/15 08:12 PM
Originally Posted by dewster
"It needed also a sort of athleticism of mind, an ability at one moment to make the most delicate use of logic and at the next to be unconscious of the crudest logical errors. Stupidity was as necessary as intelligence, and as difficult to attain." - George Orwell, 1984


Interesting quote!

The athleticism of some minds reminds me of sports like curling or Scottish log throwing. Or perhaps as children measure how far they spit a watermelon seed.

While most sports can be entertaining, those who employ mental gymnastics to circumvent logic are simply tedious.
Posted By: ElmerJFudd Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/12/15 01:17 AM
Quote
The fact that there are not multiple studies of dps causing injury is, in itself, a proof. In our litigious society there would have been numerous studies and class action suits if dp actions were dangerous, which I find an absurd statement.


Jim, that's speculative reasoning. I'll play devil's advocate here and speculate as well, but I'm not declaring it as fact...

Perhaps its not worth filing a suit you can't win because such a study would be very difficult to do. You need to prove causal relationship. Also, the digital piano playing % of our society is not very large (even if you include AP players as well, it's pretty small). And the number of them that put in the kind of hours that add up to injury is even smaller.

Here's some factual stuff...
Carpal tunnel, tendonitis and RSIs in general account for three fifths of all occupational injuries. Once the cat was out of the bag about computer keyboard and mouse use injured workers, they started going after their employers. But those pockets are shallow, and since no one wants the stigma of suing their boss, workers started going after computer keyboard manufacturers (beginning with Compaq back in the day). Again, here it is difficult to prove causal relationship between RSIs and computer use (although most people today accept the obvious to be true) what Compaq and the rest failed to do is warn workers that it is possible to develop an RSI on their equipment and had they warned them, the workers could have altered their behavior. Point being, the chance of successfully suing a keyboard manufacturer for RSI is low. And if the industry saw a massive class action suit coming, they'd start slapping "may cause RSI" stickers on their products.

Quote
To state that professional players suffer injury is not surprising and I don't think in any way only related to the piano. The piano is what it is. If you want to play on it hour after hour you will likely injure yourself as you would using any other device known to man. Try swinging a baseball bat 6 hours a day, hitting a golf ball 6 hours a day every day. Playing guitar, swimming, the list could go on forever. Also, the body absorbs impact better when younger but there is a cumulative effect with everything. Some pain is just a factor of growing older. Trying to legislate away the cumulative effects of repetitive motion is stupid. Its up to the individual to determine what their body can withstand.


Agreed, and very true. Life is about choices. And that is not unique to musical instrument study and mastery. For example, the issue of cyclists at risk of, "Prostate Cancer apparently. Mainly fanatical, long distance performance based riders are at risk. . .but I guess they`d rather pop their clogs half way up a mountain road than drag things out for years!" We have a very over-litigious society. You really can't make a life choice and then sue over it.

However, if you knew for fact that a particular design of keyboard action was just generally bad for anyone that played it, wouldn't you want to know which one(s) to avoid? So, in my mind it is OK for the original poster to share his experience with the instrument he is playing on. For others who are sensitive, perhaps that action is not a great choice for them.

Quote
I will agree that slavishly mimicking the action of an acoustic piano makes no sense. Except that they don't seem to have found an improvement that is acceptable to the wide range of players that the current layout provides.


I guess it's generally accepted that the AP action is the best place to start since it's been refined over 300 years. And since the technique of playing it has been studied deeply perhaps this is the best we can ask for... for now.

Quote
Who will push for innovation? Certainly no one associated with classical music as any change would affect the relationship between the instrument, the player and the sound. Those who create modern music have made some changes what with stage pianos, software pianos, etc. but the basic keyboard remains as it is most likely a design that just works.


Just an aside... have you seen the ROLI Seaboard? This thing looks like it has great potential to be an expressive input device. If it takes off, it's up to the software developers to build beautiful sounding instruments that maximize its potential.
Posted By: jimb100 Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/12/15 06:02 AM
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
Quote
The fact that there are not multiple studies of dps causing injury is, in itself, a proof. In our litigious society there would have been numerous studies and class action suits if dp actions were dangerous, which I find an absurd statement.


Jim, that's speculative reasoning. I'll play devil's advocate here and speculate as well, but I'm not declaring it as fact...

Perhaps its not worth filing a suit you can't win because such a study would be very difficult to do. You need to prove causal relationship. Also, the digital piano playing % of our society is not very large (even if you include AP players as well, it's pretty small). And the number of them that put in the kind of hours that add up to injury is even smaller.

Here's some factual stuff...
Carpal tunnel, tendonitis and RSIs in general account for three fifths of all occupational injuries. Once the cat was out of the bag about computer keyboard and mouse use injured workers, they started going after their employers. But those pockets are shallow, and since no one wants the stigma of suing their boss, workers started going after computer keyboard manufacturers (beginning with Compaq back in the day). Again, here it is difficult to prove causal relationship between RSIs and computer use (although most people today accept the obvious to be true) what Compaq and the rest failed to do is warn workers that it is possible to develop an RSI on their equipment and had they warned them, the workers could have altered their behavior. Point being, the chance of successfully suing a keyboard manufacturer for RSI is low. And if the industry saw a massive class action suit coming, they'd start slapping "may cause RSI" stickers on their products.

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To state that professional players suffer injury is not surprising and I don't think in any way only related to the piano. The piano is what it is. If you want to play on it hour after hour you will likely injure yourself as you would using any other device known to man. Try swinging a baseball bat 6 hours a day, hitting a golf ball 6 hours a day every day. Playing guitar, swimming, the list could go on forever. Also, the body absorbs impact better when younger but there is a cumulative effect with everything. Some pain is just a factor of growing older. Trying to legislate away the cumulative effects of repetitive motion is stupid. Its up to the individual to determine what their body can withstand.


Agreed, and very true. Life is about choices. And that is not unique to musical instrument study and mastery. For example, the issue of cyclists at risk of, "Prostate Cancer apparently. Mainly fanatical, long distance performance based riders are at risk. . .but I guess they`d rather pop their clogs half way up a mountain road than drag things out for years!" We have a very over-litigious society. You really can't make a life choice and then sue over it.

However, if you knew for fact that a particular design of keyboard action was just generally bad for anyone that played it, wouldn't you want to know which one(s) to avoid? So, in my mind it is OK for the original poster to share his experience with the instrument he is playing on. For others who are sensitive, perhaps that action is not a great choice for them.

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I will agree that slavishly mimicking the action of an acoustic piano makes no sense. Except that they don't seem to have found an improvement that is acceptable to the wide range of players that the current layout provides.


I guess it's generally accepted that the AP action is the best place to start since it's been refined over 300 years. And since the technique of playing it has been studied deeply perhaps this is the best we can ask for... for now.

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Who will push for innovation? Certainly no one associated with classical music as any change would affect the relationship between the instrument, the player and the sound. Those who create modern music have made some changes what with stage pianos, software pianos, etc. but the basic keyboard remains as it is most likely a design that just works.


Just an aside... have you seen the ROLI Seaboard? This thing looks like it has great potential to be an expressive input device. If it takes off, it's up to the software developers to build beautiful sounding instruments that maximize its potential.


It may be speculative reasoning but this thread is pretty speculative. I have no problem with the original poster sharing his experience. If he truly believes a Kawai keyboard injured him I have no problem with him seeking legal remedies. I just can't see him winning as many others play on the same keyboard and, with reasonable playing hours are not injured. Also, most people who read posts like this are likely to judge for themselves whether there is an inherent design flaw, as the poster has inferred or that there is sufficient evidence that the Kawai design is no better or worse than any other and that playing a couple of hours a day won't result in injury caused by the piano. Not that injury might not occur anyway.

Computer keyboards use for work are a little different in that if it is a job requirement there are legal protections relating to workman's comp that come into play. The hobbyist has no such protections.

Look, I just hate to see one of the 'usual suspects' (not the op)using this occasion to malign the dp on this public forum. As if you could actually find a law firm with enough confidence in a big payoff to take hobbyist tendonitis claim to court.

I have tendonitis in my right elbow. I got it from lifting too much weight. I'm not suing Bowflex. Its become chronic, but that's not Bowflex's fault.

It will be interesting to see, now that the software piano is quite sophisticated, what other input devices might be developed. I don't suppose there is really any reason the input device needs to be laid out like a piano with keys. But given that most people who actually make money from playing are happy with stage pianos and synths and the market is so small, there's not much pressure nor payback for innovation.
Posted By: dewster Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/12/15 12:44 PM
Originally Posted by ElmerJFudd
Just an aside... have you seen the ROLI Seaboard?

The ultimate in soft bottoming! wink Haven't seen it in the flesh, but I can't imagine wanting to smash foam in order to make music, particularly percussive music. And it doesn't seem playable without keeping and eagle eye on your hands, another bugbear of mine when it comes to musical instruments. But godspeed to the developers because lord knows we need all the alternative controllers we can get.
Posted By: LookinforDP Re: DPs with soft bottoming out... - 04/12/15 04:23 PM
Originally Posted by jimb100


I will agree that slavishly mimicking the action of an acoustic piano makes no sense.


Well if it's showed as "put_anything_here" piano, it should have what makes a piano unique, and that's the key mechanism ...
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