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Honzach Offline OP
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Hi guys,

I'm going to start taking lessons in the next couple of weeks, so I need to buy a piano. I have been looking at digital pianos and searching the interweb for probably over a week now, for advice, reviews, recommendations etc.

I would have ordered a YDP-140 already, but for 2 reasons. The first reason is that the YDP-160 exists :P The second reason is that these models are 2 years old now!!!, and I heard that Yamaha brought out a new model range to replace them (141, 161 etc). I also figured out that Yamaha is stockpiling these up and not releasing them for sale, because they want to shift their existing stock mad They are also doing this with their DXG-640 which was something else I was possibly interested in, because of it's flexibility. But, stock not expected before the summer...

SO - if I want to get mad, and take some 'revenge' on Yamaha for what I feel is immoral business practices IMO, I would just put two fingers in Yamaha's direction, and purchase something from one of their competitors. This would likely be self-satisfying and would only hurt myself.

That being said - I tried the Korg 250. Looks horrible, but lets say that the action was OK and it sounded, well, sorta OK but not really convincing to me.

I was looking at my local retailer's webshop, and noticed that they also sell the new Casio range. I compared the features of the AP-220, 420 and 620, and decided that I would be happy with the 420 from a features perspective, but I have no idea of the feel of the keys, and it's too difficult to discern the quality (or lack thereof) of the sample sounds on their celviano website, even through i played them through headphones and my Dobly DTS cinema sound system.

I'm almost ready to plunge for the Casio, but when I rang my retailer to order it (who I trust), he was really strongly advising me against it. Even though they sell them, and the Yamaha's (I tried a 330 in their brick and mortar store, but I can't afford it), they told me that it's horrible quality, and after a couple of months I would need to be making warranty calls to Casio.

I'm having difficulty finding what I feel would be honest or unbiased reviews on the web about this keyboard. Does anyone have a 420 that can share their experience? Please note, that I am aware of quality issues of Casio instruments in the past, but I really want to believe that they have turned over a new leaf.

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Originally Posted by Honzach

SO - if I want to get mad, and take some 'revenge' on Yamaha for what I feel is immoral business practices IMO, I would just put two fingers in Yamaha's direction, and purchase something from one of their competitors. This would likely be self-satisfying and would only hurt myself.


I don't really see the problem in Yamaha pre-announcing its next product. Pretty much every company that makes anything electronic (including the other DP manufacturers) does this (though not too far in advance, to avoid the 'Osborne Effect'). The alternative is for them not to say anything until the new model is in the shops, giving you no warning that the product you bought the day before has now been replaced! UK sites that advertise the 141 are quoting availability 'from June', so you might not have to wait that long in any case.

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You should get the piano that fits your needs and your budget. Whatever brand that works out to be.

As a beginner that purpoe of the iano is to learn to play. I think the number one thing to look at is the quality of the key action. Nothing else really matters as much.


The YDP160, I think, is much better than the YDP140. THe 140 uses the "GHS" key action while the 160 uses "GH". The two are quite a bit different. Other Yamaha modelts that use GH are the P155, CP33 and YDP223. I have the P155 (on a matching LP140 stand) and like it better than the YDP160. The P155 has much more usable controls, the buttons are all labled. and the internal sound samples are newer and better, and the price is less.

At this price point it is hard to find a DP with better key action. Kawai (all of them) is as good but all of them cost more. The higher end Rolands are as good but cost more than double. If you like the Casio key action you are in luck because the PX130 is on sale at (at least) my local Guitar Center for $399. It you like Casio there is no need to buy a higher model if the goal is to learn to play. he Casio has an available 3 pedal unit and stand. Get those too.

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Honzach Offline OP
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Yamaha is not simply pre-announcing a product. The product exists, and is being withheld.


Last edited by Honzach; 05/03/10 11:13 AM. Reason: for clarity
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Update: I called my retailer and asked them to get me the 160. They called back an hour later and told me that there are no 160's left in stock, and Yamaha are refusing to send any (they don't have any more apparently) until the 161's are released.

So as far as I'm concerned, Yahama lost a customer. I'm ordering the AP-420.

Thanks for the responses.

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You should maybe consider other brands too, not only Yamaha. Both Roland and Kawai offer digital pianos in the same price class as YDP-140 and YDP160 and both companies make quality products.

For example:
Kawai CL25, or the CL35 if you want three pedals
Roland F-110
Kawai CN22



KAWAI CN22 M, Roland FP2, Pianoteq 3.6.3, Hammond XK-1, KORG microkorg
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Oh I seemed to miss half of the posts in here when I wrote that, got to read only the first two, internet connection problems.


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Originally Posted by Honzach
Yamaha is not simply pre-announcing a product. The product exists, and is being withheld.



I don't see what the big deal is. Yamaha can do with their merchandise what they want. I personally don't blame them for not wanting a bunch of "new old-stock" product lying around that they'll have to deeply discount just to get rid of.


Les C Deal




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Originally Posted by Honzach
Update: I called my retailer and asked them to get me the 160. They called back an hour later and told me that there are no 160's left in stock, and Yamaha are refusing to send any (they don't have any more apparently) until the 161's are released.

So as far as I'm concerned, Yahama lost a customer. I'm ordering the AP-420.

Thanks for the responses.


Well, they may have lost a customer, but I have a feeling you will have lost out on a much better quality piano.

My local dealer, and friend, will not sell Casio digital pianos because of their lesser quality, and poor resale and trade-in value, compared to Yamaha (and other brands).

Hopefully you'll be satisfied with your purchase.

Buy in haste...repent at leisure.

Snazzy


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I did not post for a long time, but I would like to share my experience with both Yamaha and Casio - I am an intermediate adult player and I essentially play classical piano:

I used to own a SY-22 synth for 20 years and sold it recently as I was not using it anymore. It was still in very good shape. Very well built.

I used to own a Yamaha P-120 - same thing very well built - few buzzing issues that I was lucky to fix by tightening a screw here and there - I have sold it because of its lack of sample layers, which made the sound flat to my hears, not inspiring, but the built quality was excellent and the action was very nice as well. A drawback of its sturdy construction, it did weight like a tank! No way I could carry it around easily.

The problem is that I was spoiled as I also own a beautiful Yamaha acoustic grand piano - a 33 years old C3. It is tuned and maintained by a local pro every 6 months. I love it and play on it every day as much as I can.

I replaced the P-120 by a Casio PX320. I did the jump because I liked the action good enough compared to the previous models and it was light enough so I could bring it during our weekends away from home.
I would have settled for a PX-120 if it had a USB port and other connections that could be had only with the PX-320 for less than $50 more. The sound of the PX-320 is OK through the speakers, good through good headphones (with flat response, avoid Bass amplified headphones with DPs).
Since I bought the PX-320 18 months ago, I have played it on a regular basis. I bring it during the weekends I spend away from home when possible. And I like to be able to practice more thanks to its light weight and good action.

I added a year ago or so the 3-pedals bar and I have built my own stand ( weekend project for fun, $20) to put it at the right height. It is great.

So far no issue with the Casio and the pedals, the key-bed did not get loose like some complain about. It makes some little noise but not more than when it was new, and probably less than the Yamaha DP with GHS a friend of mine owns.
But guess what? The P-120 had better keys I would say, but it was doing some noise as well. Even my acoustic's action makes noise. To me it is part of the instrument and it does not bother me.
I don't plan to retire the PX-320 any time soon, it is my practice piano to play at night and when I travel. It does its job well and if I was to purchase a DP today, I would get another Casio, a PX-130 probably as it would fit my needs perfectly. I never use the extra sounds of the PX-320. They are not that good anyway.

One detail: my 9 years old, who started taking lessons about 4 years ago, does switch from the acoustic to the PX-320 back and forth and he does not like the sound of the PX through the speakers. But he has no issue with the Casio action at all.

As a beginner, you will not use a pedal immediately and the pedals that comes with the cheaper DPs are cheap flat switch pedals that are not nice at all. The P-120 came with a very good pedal.
About the quality of the new Casios, I have read that some people had issues with the keys out of the box. If that is a concern, I would buy one from a store where I can open the box and try each key one by one. I bought my PX-320 on the internet for a very good price - it arrived in perfect condition - I might have been lucky but I am not the only lucky Casio DP owner around here.

About the loss in resale and trade-in value, I would rather spend $500 and getting $100 4 years after, than $1000 and getting $500 (maybe) for it ... as long as the instrument fits my needs.

What really matters is the action and then the sound as you can connect your DP to a good PC to get the PC to play the sound later if you need to. That is why I would get a PX-130 - I believe it is right now $399 at Guitar Center - with a good stable stand and later would add a good pedal system - and with the money saved, I would take lessons.

Last point: as you will just start, you do not know yet if you will stick with it. That is another reason to take the cheaper route, especially if your budget is tight.

- All of this is just in my humble opinion. I do not sell any musical product.

Vincent

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Well, it really makes no difference, Vincent, as the original poster has already made his decision, rather hastily, it seems, and now must live with it.

Hopefully, he will get the same enjoyment as you, and not have problems with wobbly keys and noisy action like many others.

Regarding GHS action...I've had two Yamaha P-85's, both of which were played much more vigorously and far more often than the average player, and both held up exceptionally well, with no noise issues or loose/wobbly keys whatsoever, and I've only recently sold one of them, and did well on the sale.

I have no affiliation with Yamaha or any other company, but, in my many years as a professional musician, I do know quality when I play it...GHS, although Yamaha's least expensive action, has been around for quite a few years, and has proven very reliable and issue free...Casio's is relatively new, and still getting the idiosyncrasies worked out.

An action that is both as good at the beginning, and still smooth, quiet and nicely playable long after the newness has worn off, is far more acceptable than one that feels fine at first, but develops issues later on...at least that's how I see it.

Snazzy


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Originally Posted by Honzach
Update: I called my retailer and asked them to get me the 160. They called back an hour later and told me that there are no 160's left in stock, and Yamaha are refusing to send any (they don't have any more apparently) until the 161's are released.

So as far as I'm concerned, Yahama lost a customer. I'm ordering the AP-420.


It's up to you, but from my impressions, AP-420 has very weak and cheap keyboard compared to Yamaha, and poor acoustics. It's not even close, really.

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>Well, it really makes no difference, Vincent, as the original poster has already made his decision, rather hastily, it seems, and now must live with it.

It was not a hasty decision. I spend weeks researching, asking around, and visiting shops. Time I could have spent with my piano teacher, learning to play. I'd rather talk to people in person, I can gauge what sort of people they are quite quickly, but users on the net you have no idea whether their opinions have any weight, but I certainly do pick up on the passive aggressive posters quickly...

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Honzach, may I ask why you did not consider alternative brands such as Kawai or Roland?

Cheers,
James
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Originally Posted by Honzach


but I certainly do pick up on the passive aggressive posters quickly...


Yes, me too...however, I do hope you have found the proper instrument. This forum can be invaluable for learning the common ailments/problems of certain brands/models, but it is you who must live with the final decision.

Snazzy



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I have a Casio AP-200 and it's fine but probably an older model than you would want

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Snazzy, sounds like YOU are not satisfied with the decision of Honzach... It does not make sense to question this over and over again.

If the thread opener has played several DPs and chose this one as the best option for the budget then it should be fine!


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Originally Posted by mucci
Snazzy, sounds like YOU are not satisfied with the decision of Honzach... It does not make sense to question this over and over again.

If the thread opener has played several DPs and chose this one as the best option for the budget then it should be fine!


Howdy, Ian...you still playing moderator? grin

I'm guessing you're just a bit miffed because the OP didn't buy a Kawai. grin

Now go play in the traffic, like a good little fellow. wink

Snazzy

BTW...I have a feeling Honzach will be far more dissatisfied with his decision than you or I ever will. grin



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Hehe, that's the way we know you... always a little bit fresh... We really love each other!


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Originally Posted by mucci
Hehe, that's the way we know you... always a little bit fresh... We really love each other!


Yes, I guess you could say neither of us will get stale too soon...unlike a Casio piano. wink

I always got the impression that Casio built a keyboard, put it on sale, and then found out how it sounded. wink

But, they do have their supporters, and some of them are even sober long enough to post here on this marvelous forum. grin

Snazzy




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