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Weighted hammer action vs piano

Posted By: Poonam Kumar

Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 04:18 AM

Hi,
I am totally new to piano. I am an organist. I am going to join piano classes. I can't afford to buy a piano. I am planning to buy Korg M3 88 (RH3 hammer action) keyboard so that it will be useful for dual purpose. My doubt is whether I can learn piano on this? Can I complete 8 grades from Trinity college london using this keyboard. Please help me out since I am totally new to piano.

Thanks,
Poonam
Posted By: Geoffk

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 04:33 AM

If you're going to do advanced piano study (i.e. grade 8), you'll want to practice as much on a real acoustic as possible. Even th best digitals are not exactly like an acoustic in response, and at the highest levels, the difference is important enough to demand some acoustic practice time.

I'm not sure how realistic the piano tone on the M3 is. I know that many of the sounds are attractive and useful, but if the piano tone is not realistic and doesn't respond like a real piano than it would not be ideal. Likewise, you need a pedal (ideally two or three pedals for advanced study) and real piano pedals have a gradual response which some keyboards don't properly emulate.

Frankly, if you plan to study piano to an advanced level, you're probably better off getting a dedicated digital piano that supports half-pedaling, una corda pedal, pedal damper resonance, multiple dynamic samples and other high-end features. This will probably cost at least 700-1000 Pounds (although I'm not so familiar with British pricing).
Posted By: AlphaTerminus

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 05:14 AM

Poonam: Agreeing with the above post, but understanding the M3 will likely be what is available for you to practice on, I'd also encourage you to download Pianoteq (which uses modelling rather than sampling and is currently the best grand piano emulator) and hook your M3 to your PC along with some high end monitors, a subwoofer, and a good 3 pedal system that supports half-peddling. Do this and you've basically turned you M3 into a $6000 Roland V-piano for 1/2 the price. If you have problems with latency, which some do with this program, buy the Yamaha Audiogram 3 USB sound interface along with the latest driver and you will have zero latency.

I have this setup with a Yamaha PF-500. The speakers and subwoofer are in physical contact with the keyboard/stand and I really can't tell I'm not playing a $30,000 grand piano, though it's not as pretty ;-)

Purists will deride the above, but hey, we want quality on a budget.
Posted By: Poonam Kumar

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 08:03 AM

Thanks a lot for your suggestions. Can I really connect a 3 pedal system to M3. Is there any good brand available on net? Can you please explain more about pianoteq? I dont have much idea on this.

Thanks,
Poonam
Posted By: henrik

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 08:14 AM

poonam, care to share why u choose M3 instead of other synths?
Posted By: Tweedpipe

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 06:24 PM

AlphaT
Interesting set-up. I've just sent you a PM.
Posted By: Johan B

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 07:05 PM

Originally Posted by Poonam Kumar
Hi,
I am totally new to piano. I am an organist. I am going to join piano classes. I can't afford to buy a piano. I am planning to buy Korg M3 88 (RH3 hammer action) keyboard so that it will be useful for dual purpose. My doubt is whether I can learn piano on this? Can I complete 8 grades from Trinity college london using this keyboard. Please help me out since I am totally new to piano.

Thanks,
Poonam


Dear Poonam Kumar,

I was churchorganist from 1965 till 1988. Played a lot on mechanical and antique organs. The only thing you have to learn as organist is playing with dynamic. Therefore you need a touchsensitive and weighted keyboard. There are many not very expensive digitals.

I refound my music-hobby in 2006. Now I play a digital piano. First I had a Yamaha dgx620, nice but in my opinion it had a lot nonsence on board.
I now bought a Yamaha clp320PE, a simple no-nonsence digital piano wtih nice piano- and organsamples.

Perhaps this is some advice for you.
Best regards,
Johan B
Posted By: The_Linux_Crew

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 07:44 PM

Originally Posted by Johan B


I now bought a Yamaha clp320PE, a simple no-nonsence digital piano wtih nice piano- and organsamples.


I recently acquired a YDP-160. It looks nearly identical to the CLP320PE. What are the differences?
Posted By: AlphaTerminus

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 08:07 PM

Poonam: Go to Pianoteq.com and download the free trial. Connect your DP via USB to your computer and play with it. It just does a better job than anything else in reproducing acoustic grand sound, buy using physics rather than microphone sampling. If you get any latency or pops PM me as it's easy to fix.)

BTW if I seem like a Pianoteq evangelist in my posts it's because feel like I've found musical salvation in it for my aging Yamaha PF-500 and think it's the best thing since Diet Mountain Dew! (I have no connection with the company and in fact just gave them $360 for what I consider well spent cash.)
Posted By: Johan B

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 08:23 PM

Dear Linux,

The main differende is the polyphony. YPD160 64 polyphoon versus CLP 128.
Beside that.....the CLP has better sampling.

Best regards,
Johan B
Posted By: AlphaTerminus

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/21/09 08:56 PM

Poonam: Yes you can connect 3 pedals and assign them functions. Per MusiciansFriend.com Musician's Friend Korg M3 88 descrption: "Three pedal inputs are provided, including damper jack support for half-damper sensing. The footswitch and footpedal jacks can be assigned to wide choice of functions including modulation, sostenuto, Program advance, punch-in recording and much more."

So you'd have to by 3 separate sustain pedals and assign them each the corresponding funtion. You could attach them to a small board or to the floor so they'l stay in place as a unit.

Johan B: Poonam's Korg M3 has an "RH3" action keyboard which is like the "GH3" from Yamaha. The keys are touch sensitive. This seems to be an adequate unit to function as a digital piano, given that he wants it to live a dual life as an organ.
Posted By: Geoffk

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/22/09 05:47 AM

The thing is, most organs *don't* have a weighted, piano-like keyboard. Rather than buying one expensive workstation that's not ideal for either purpose, he'd be better of getting an inexpensive organ-style keyboard organ (or synth) for organ practice and a relatively inexpensive DP with a realistic piano sound and keyboard for the piano study. I agree that it sounds like the M3 might be an ok DP with a better sound module/sample set. But rather than spending more money making the M3 something it's not, why not just get instruments that are well-suited to what he wants to practice with them?
Posted By: jpscoey

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/22/09 09:26 AM

Originally Posted by Poonam Kumar
I am totally new to piano. I am an organist. I am going to join piano classes. I can't afford to buy a piano. I am planning to buy Korg M3 88 (RH3 hammer action) keyboard so that it will be useful for dual purpose.


Poonam, there are quite a few ways of looking at this, so before I offer my thoughts,

can I just ask why you specifically plan to buy a Korg M3?

Cheers,

John.
Posted By: Poonam Kumar

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/23/09 10:37 AM

Hi,
Truly speaking, I am a fan of Korg. I use to rent out Korg TR board and play. That's why I opted for Korg brand and 88 key because I wanted to learn piano. Actually I am more specific about M3 because I wanted to explore the Karma features in it.
At first I thought of buying a Korg M50 61 key and an yamaha upright piano seperately but it seems very expensive and moreover it is very rare to get a good second hand piano in India.

Regards,
Poonam Kumar
Posted By: Geoffk

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/23/09 10:40 AM

How about the M50 and a Korg SP-250 for the piano? That would be all Korg, pretty reasonable for practice and maybe not too expensive.
Posted By: jpscoey

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/23/09 11:04 AM

Originally Posted by Poonam Kumar
Hi,
Truly speaking, I am a fan of Korg. I use to rent out Korg TR board and play. That's why I opted for Korg brand and 88 key because I wanted to learn piano. Actually I am more specific about M3 because I wanted to explore the Karma features in it.


Hi again Poonam, now that you've answered my question I feel as though I'm in a better position to reply!

I can't argue against you being a fan of KORG - I'm a big fan of their keyboards too!

The M3-88 has the same keybed as the M50-88 (which I have) - and it is a really good

'graded-hammer' touch, ie: the 'weight' of the keys is graduated from 'heavy' in the bass

area, through to 'light' in the top treble.

It has a really nice touch (and velocity-sensitive) keyboard to play.

Adding to that the fact that you mention wanting to explore all the other features available

in the M3..... then I can't offer any 'arguments' against your choice.


If you want an 'all-in-one' keyboard, with all sorts of features available,

you've made a wise choice thumb.


Check this link - it's mind-boggling really!

http://www.korg.com/product.aspx?pd=280

Good luck smile.
Posted By: Poonam Kumar

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/23/09 11:35 AM

Hi John,
Thanks a lot for you reply. I just saw gears that use. Most of them are 88 keys. Whether M50-88 or M3-88 can really (almost) replace a piano? Are u able to connect all 3 pedals to your 88key gears? How about playing lead lines using other sounds in this keyboard? Is it easy? I am asking this because I have never used this weighted action keybed.
Posted By: jpscoey

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/23/09 12:33 PM

Originally Posted by Poonam Kumar
Hi John,
Thanks a lot for you reply. I just saw gears that use. Most of them are 88 keys. Whether M50-88 or M3-88 can really (almost) replace a piano? Are u able to connect all 3 pedals to your 88key gears? How about playing lead lines using other sounds in this keyboard? Is it easy? I am asking this because I have never used this weighted action keybed.


If you're thinking of using both piano AND organ applications,

I would suggest that you consider a two-keyboard set-up similar to mine..... it took a lot

of trial & error before I got it right!!!


The KORG M50-88 is my favourite keyboard - it has most of the features of the M3.....

and yes, you can attach a 3-pedal set-up.


But if Organ is also important to you, then the 'weighted-touch' is a bit

of a disadvantage.... so,

if you've got the budget for an M3, my advice would be to get the KORG M50-88

(the 'KARMA' application is available as an'extra' for about £100),

+ (with the £££'s you've saved) a second keyboard for 'Organ'.

You'd save £1000 by buying the M50 instead of the M3, so you could put that money

towards a Nord Electro. smile

Posted By: Geoffk

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/24/09 01:22 AM

Right, that was what I suggested also. The Korg M50 (88 or 61) for the organ/synth stuff with a nice organ/synth action and a Korg SP-250 or Yamaha P-155 for a dedicated DP with a good weighted piano action.
Posted By: A7Henderson

Re: Weighted hammer action vs piano - 08/24/09 06:39 PM

Originally Posted by Geoffk
Right, that was what I suggested also. The Korg M50 (88 or 61) for the organ/synth stuff with a nice organ/synth action and a Korg SP-250 or Yamaha P-155 for a dedicated DP with a good weighted piano action.


Doesn't the M50 have weighted piano action though? On the Korgs website it says it has "88-key weighted action (RH3: Real Weighted Hammer Action 3 keyboard with 4-zone graded action response)", is that not similar to weighted action on something like a P-155?
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