Piano World Home Page
Posted By: Lam Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/01/16 02:32 AM
Hi guys,

I was trying out both of these models at two different shops. From my understanding they use the same speakers, only major difference being the gp500 is not made from cheap wood and cost 50% more than the gp300.

I noticed there was a huge sound quality difference in favour of the gp500. The gp300 sounded so poor in comparison I could only justify buying it as a midi controller. Has anyone tried both models side by side? I know psycological issues (ebony looks spectacular) and the room resonance plays a big part but this was like night and day. Cheers

Posted By: Beakybird Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/01/16 04:22 AM
Same sound engine. Better speaker system?
Posted By: JohnnyReb Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/01/16 04:28 AM
Lamadoo,

I have tried both...the 500 is light years better in sound. It has nothing to do with speakers...they are identical. Basically what you are hearing is software. There are some modeling parameters to do with resonances and stuff that are not in the 300....
So technically the 300 could be updated to the 500 in terms of sound by Casio. To me it is a strange marketing decision because the 300 is such a turn off that someone might not even think of trying the 500. I think Casio should make them all sound the sane and then just charge more for the glossy cabinet. I think it has caused them to lose potential customers. I for one thought about purchasing one but the 300 sounds so bad and the 500 is such an extreme difference in price. I wish they would make a software update to the 300 - it definitely would sell better as it has a really nice action.

God bless
Posted By: Lam Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/01/16 07:51 AM
Much thanks JohnnyReb, that clears it up smile Totally agree with you as some of the stores here don't have the gp500 on display but use the gp300 as the flagship.
Posted By: augustm Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/01/16 12:51 PM
well there is the 400 too -- the better sound, in a cheaper cabinet
Posted By: kapelli Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/01/16 01:20 PM
I was playing in them and found them too expresie and to bright in top octaves, while bass and mind were bit strange. Not even a close to real Bechstein - at lest those few brand new I was playing on. Action is nice though.

I still wonder whether they are definitely better or just different than Kawai CA or Roland LX series pianos.
Posted By: Dave Horne Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/01/16 02:20 PM
I tried both Casio models side by side and while the sound was excellent I was not enthralled by the action.

I would be very happy to play them in a restaurant but for my main practice piano, I'll pass.
Posted By: Dscally Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/02/16 10:55 PM
I agree with Dave Horne. I liked the Casio sound - particularly the quick settings to transport you into the acoustic experience of, say, a comcert hall. And I found the 400 a good compromise: all the bells of the 500 without the price. (I also hate high gloss black. It's polyester people).

Yet, for all the fuss Casio makes over the key action I found it quite unsubtle and bumpy, like a car without suspension. After the Casio I moved straight to the Roland LX-7 which, by comparison had an action like wearing a pair of Crocs: comfy and pliable and lovely. Like Crocs and your feet, though, I'm not sure of the long-term effects of the Roland keyboard on my playing skills :-)
Posted By: Kawai James Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/03/16 05:16 AM
Dscally, which action would be the equivalent to a pair of Birkenstock Boston? wink
Posted By: Lam Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/04/16 12:00 AM
The only other DPs that have an actual grand action with moving hammers is yamaha avantgrand. Casio/Bechstein action is probaly the fastest in the world since they made the decision to remove the escapement mechanism. I think they are years ahead in the competition in terms of action and price.
Posted By: augustm Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/04/16 05:14 AM
I find that you should change the sound -- The quasi-Steinway is far better
than the Bechstein sound. Better: the "Satie" scene (on the 400/500) brings up a little more the resonances on the Steinway sound. It makes a big difference.
Posted By: JoBert Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/04/16 11:24 AM
Originally Posted by lamadoo
The only other DPs that have an actual grand action with moving hammers is yamaha avantgrand.

For the record: In the current generation of DPs, the Yamaha AvantGrands are still the only DPs with an actual grand (or upright) action. The Casio GP300/400/500 action is not an actual grand action. It's a custom action that was developed specifically was this line of DPs. It uses similar mechanics as a grand action, but the term "actual grand action" implies that you could find this same action (maybe with minor changes) in a real (Bechstein?) grand, which isn't so.
Posted By: CyberGene Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/04/16 11:40 AM
Looking at the GP action, I don't see the repetition mechanism. What's the purpose of advertising "grand piano action" when you've actually removed a very specific mechanism that makes the grand piano keys feel the way they feel and behave. Anyway, I've tries the action in a store with the instrument switched off and it was a good one, definitely not as good as AvantGrand but on par with the best digital actions. I haven't had the chance to play one, and so not the most objective opinion, but I am absolutely disgusted by the audio demos on their website. It sounds so thin and artificial I could have mistaken it with earlier versions of Pianoteq. Thanks, but no, thanks.
Posted By: Belger1900 Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/04/16 11:56 AM
I had a look at the GP300. Keyboard feel was good.
What I did not like was the cheap looking surfaces on the matt black instrument. Even the legs of the instrument wobbled. And who´s Idea was it to have this huge bechstein sign on the front of the instrument!?!?

Even if the sound and feel are good, I would not buy it due to the overall poor build quality.
Posted By: ThaiBlue Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/04/16 01:34 PM
Originally Posted by CyberGene
Looking at the GP action, I don't see the repetition mechanism. What's the purpose of advertising "grand piano action" when you've actually removed a very specific mechanism that makes the grand piano keys feel the way they feel and behave. Anyway, I've tries the action in a store with the instrument switched off and it was a good one, definitely not as good as AvantGrand but on par with the best digital actions. I haven't had the chance to play one, and so not the most objective opinion, but I am absolutely disgusted by the audio demos on their website. It sounds so thin and artificial I could have mistaken it with earlier versions of Pianoteq. Thanks, but no, thanks.


It shows how we are all different. I haven't heard the demos on the website but I found the GP500 sound to be superior (to my ears) to the Kawai and Roland.
Posted By: JoBert Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/04/16 02:07 PM
Originally Posted by ThaiBlue
It shows how we are all different. I haven't heard the demos on the website but I found the GP500 sound to be superior (to my ears) to the Kawai and Roland.

Yes, that is something that is unfortunately forgotten all too often here on the DP sub forum: That there is no such thing as the one perfectly realistic acoustic piano sound. And consequently, there's also no such thing as the one perfect digital reproduction.

Even acoustic pianos have a vast variety of sounds (between different instruments). I bet, that even if you would take one acoustic piano and sampled it into a DP with 100% perfection, so that even the owner of the acoustic piano could not hear any difference, you would get posters here on the forum who would complain that this "perfect" DP sounds fake, digital, toy-ish, not-like-an-acoustic-at-all etc. (you choose one).

Simply because some people would have a different expectation of how an acoustic piano is supposed to sound like, and if the sound that they hear is not like that expectation (in this case because the acoustic from which the hypothetical DP was sampled sounds different), they dismiss it as "not real". Of course, if at the same time they see (or know) that the sound comes from an AP, then they adjust internally and accept the sound as "real", because it obviously is real, coming from an AP. But the same sound coming from a DP can safely be disregarded as "fake", if you are so inclined, if it doesn't match your expectation.

And then there's of course also the matter of taste. Even with APs, you have people with very differing tastes. One person's dream piano is horrible (sound wise) to some other person. Just now, there's a thread over at the general sub-forum by a person complaining about a Steinway that is gifted to her which she absolutely hates. I guess that for many here, this Steinway would be a dream instrument (especially if given as a gift). For her it is horrible, mostly because she compares it to a Yamaha she used to have which was different...

So yes, I agree, it simply comes down to taste. What sounds (or feels, regarding action) good to one, can be bad to someone else and vice versa, and there is no universal truth which one is right and which is wrong.

For example, to get back on topic, when I tested the GP300 a few weeks ago, I didn't like the action at all (and also totally disliked the feel of the keytops) and didn't think much of the sound either. But then, I've been playing my CA97 for almost a year now. If I had played one of the Casio GPs during that time, I might now be so used to it that maybe I would think that the Kawai feels and sounds strange...
Posted By: ThaiBlue Re: Casio gp500 and gp300 - 11/04/16 02:18 PM
Originally Posted by JoBert

For example, to get back on topic, when I tested the GP300 a few weeks ago, I didn't like the action at all (and also totally disliked the feel of the keytops) and didn't think much of the sound either. But then, I've been playing my CA97 for almost a year now. If I had played one of the Casio GPs during that time, I might now be so used to it that maybe I would think that the Kawai feels and sounds strange...


I wasn't overly impressed by the GP300 sound either but thought the 500 was very good. I liked the action of both but as you say, maybe that's because the sound/feel is more similar to my AP.

The great thing is that there is a lot of choice out there and everybody should be able to find something that suits them.
© Piano World Piano & Digital Piano Forums