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#3102573 04/06/21 03:31 AM
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I just bought a (yamaha) keyboard last Xmas and started playing a musical instrument for the first time in my life.
Now I'd like to upgrade to weighted keys and a bigger sound. After extensive googling I'm looking at the Korg G1 air and C1 air.

So here are my questions:

1 Both models have been well reviewed but still I find very few user review or discussions here. And no Korg home pianos are on display in Swedsih shops. Why is that?
2 Is the sound of the G1 air better than on the C1 air, other than just string resonance? I'm a novice here, but guess that samples, soundchip and soundboard can differ?
3 The G1 air is out of stock everywhere, might it be discontinued? Or upgraded?
4 I've spoken to two dealers and they both much prefer Kawai and Yamaha, should I just listen to them? I like the sound of the CN29 but find Yamaha keys too heavy.

I thought I'd go with something just slightly above beginner level, so I don't want to upgrade again immediately. And I do prefer the sound of the G1 but am I just imaging that it's superior to the C1?

This is just a hobby for me (and possibly my son later on) and I don't expect to ever perform on or even use an acoustic piano in the future. So no real need for authenticity or escapement. I just want to enjoy the sound and touch.
I love the look of the G1 air, and the fact that I could use it as a big bluetooth speaker.
I also like that it seems quite "unpretentious", not aiming to be a grand piano, and I like glossy keys.
BUT it's far more expensive than the C1 air for not that different specs.

I've tried the Yamaha ydp 164 but find it heavy and awkward having to buy and connect special cables to use the app. I didn't like the Casio AP-470 at all.

The Korg pianos are not on display anywhere in my country unfortunately, and the Kawais are only available in Stockholm, where I can't go now because of the pandemic. So it seems I will have to make a blind buy.

Please advise.

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Hello,

As for the Korgs:

I have been on my own piano selection trail last year, and among the pianos that I thoroughly tested was the Korg D1. I liked it a lot for its sturdy build quality and good, again sturdy, feel of the keybed. I discovered however, that on this key action it is very hard or even impossible to control nuances as intuitively as you'd expect from a good instrument. The D1 typically is a stage piano, aimed at casual gigging where that nuance is less important. That nuance, however, is one of the very essentials in finer piano playing.

If I am correct, either the C1, G1, or both use the same key action (it is called RH3) and if so, those pianos certainly wouldn't be my choice.

As for the blind buy:

A piano purchase is very much a matter of personal preference, not only in terms of aesthetics but most importantly in key feel, sound, and the connection you feel to the instrument.

Many on this forum, myself included, would strongly advice against a blind buy. With the only exception perhaps being a generous return policy in case of online purchases. Much better would be to have a little more patience until the better quality stores can be visited again, and then to allow yourself multiple(!) visits to stores and to try out quite a few pianos until you get a decent click with one of them. Odds are, that piano will then be your optimal purchase.

Good luck!

Cheers and happy decision making,

HZ

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CN29, add a subwoofer, you're good to go.

I've only played the korg C1 on display, I didn't find that its RH3 was difficult to control dynaically, but it's possible that the D1 that HZPiano played has a differently programmed response curve despite using the same RH3 action.

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I own the C1 Air.

String resonance can make it sound more closer to an acoustic while playing above-beginner pieces, even though it's a subtle effect by itself. You could always connect it to a VST to gain that effect though.

The speaker system on the G1 is upgraded by the additional tweeters on top, which I believe adds more punch to the upper register sounds, however it's not a deal breaker that the C1 lacks them.
The keybed feels great, as mentioned above. It's medium weight and the weight is specially felt upon pushing the keys when using correct technique. If you can compare it with the GHS action, the Korg's action is fairly heavier, but certainly lighter than the higher end Yamaha actions.

About the nuance control, I'm with @HZPiano to an extent. On the default touch setting, you need quite a bit of adaption to be able to play between layers and pianissimo but on the "hard" touch setting it becomes rather easier to control, I'd say almost perfect as far as this piano is concerned.

I think the G1 comes with a USB port and it's a big advantage on its own if you're ever gonna use a VST. The C1 has conventional MIDI ports which would cost you an adapter in future.

Other than that, I agree that the G1 has a nicer looking cabinet, but that's a subjective matter.


I can't afford an acoustic piano therefore I have a digital piano; And I appreciate it. I have to.
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Thank you for this helpful reply! I know that blind buys are risky but the Korgs simply aren't on display anywhere in my country, and the Kawais are only available 500 km away. I could possibly go to Stockholm in the autumn for a weekend to test Kawai, but it's a long wait using just my unweighted keyboard. The other option is the yamaha, which I have tested in my town, and know would be ok, but am not excited about.

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Thank you! So in headphones the sounds of the C1 and the G1 would be almost the same?
As a complete beginner I doubt I can hear subtle differences but in youtube comparisons I found that the C1 sounds a bit harsher and more artificial than Kawai and Yamaha, but the G1 had a more organic sound. And as the price difference is 500 euros here I expected more differences than speakers and cabinet.
Are you happy with your C1 air? Does it sound beautiful and real when you play it with speakers? A dealer I spoke to complained about its "poor dynaimics" but I don't even know what that means exactly!
The specs look great, and the cabinet is nice, if a little plain, and the price is now very low in my country. Less than 900 euro.

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I looked into these two, the C1 and G1, a while ago but only got to try the C1. My memory of the comparison (sorry, I'm in a bit of a rush at the moment) was that that one major difference is that the G1 has a 3rd piano model, the Vienna. Check out the specs, but if I remember correctly that model is the sound I liked best from the various on-line demos.


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I'm a beginner who blindly (deafly?) bought a C1 Air last fall because of the same issues you're facing: no stock in stores, & it was the height of the lockdowns in my area. I'm quite happy with it & haven't had regrets yet. There may be better digital pianos, but the C1 Air certainly isn't a bad digital piano. The keybed feels great, the quality control is solid (no clicks, buzzes, wobbles, or flakey electronics), & the soft close cover is nice. You may want to upgrade to something more wonderful when your skills require it. But you won't be shortchanging yourself by starting out with the Korg.

The tone: funny, but it sounds great when someone else is playing, & I'm 10 feet away from it. Sounds great when using earphones (like all digital pianos do). Sounds muddier when I'm sitting at the piano playing out loud. Maybe that's where the extra top speakers of the G1 Air offer an advantage.

Last edited by No Expectations; 04/06/21 03:31 PM.
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Yes, there's a third "voice", I think it's like a Bosendorfer. It's a nice bonus but again, the price step is 500 euros so I thought perhaps there were more improvements. I wish they would play the same piece with the different piano sounds in demos, as I find it hard to compare the sound in three completely different genres played! I thought the German Steinway was the the most popular.

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Oh no that's sad if the one playing gets the bad sound, as ! wil most likely only use it to play to myself!

I am tempted to just buy the C1 air now, as it is cheap and one of very few models that are in stock. I'm sure I'd be happy with it like you. Especially since I don't really have any preferences yet when it comes to action. But I know myself, and I'd probably start thinking about an upgrade immediately if I bought something that feels a bit like a compromise. I don't mind spending the extra 500 euros if I get something to love and keep.

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One other thing: I started out a year ago on a 61 key unweighted Yamaha. It hurt my hands & wrists. No problems since switching to the Korg 3 months later. It took 3 weeks to adjust to a "real" keybed after playing on a "toy" keybed -- key size is different, the Korg keys have a more cushioned feel when pressing on them. But I am much, much happier with my Korg.

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I have a Korg G1 Air. It’s a good all-rounder.
I bought it blind, couldn’t try it first.
I’ve tried many digital pianos/keyboards and owned/own a few.
The Korg RH3 action is nice. I place it in my top 2 digital piano key actions I’ve tried so far, excluding high end hybrid/acoustic actions (Casio GP, Yamaha NU1 etc.).
Korg G1 Air sound is not the best, but the best has the worst key action by a long way (in my opinion).
C1 and G1 both have the RH3 action.
G1 has 2 extra sounds (30 vs 32).
G1 has a slightly better speaker system.
The Korg C1 should be good. The G1 Air will be a bit better.

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why not just buy the lp380u then.

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Well, Zara, it could be how the piano is positioned in my room too. Its backside faces an open room; the front side (keybed) faces a big window (lots of light over my shoulder, at least!). Maybe if I placed the piano against a wall like most people, it would resonate better. But I'm happy enough with the sounds, & I play with headphones most of the time anyway so as not to drive the rest of the family crazy with repetitious, elementary practice.

I can't emphasize enough how nice it feels to play. I swear I play for the tactile enjoyment as much as for the aural joy.

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Originally Posted by No Expectations
Its backside faces an open room; the front side (keybed) faces a big window (lots of light over my shoulder, at least!).

Make sure it's not the white one, sunlight will turn it yellow.

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I own the G1 Air, I played between the C1 and G1 and preferred the slightly brighter tone that the upwards firing speakers gave me. Both have the same (very good) key action. The G1 has 3 main Piano's each with 3 variants.
My favourite is actually the third Piano (Yamaha) on the second variant. I like how it brightens up the harder you play the keys.
One of the reasons the C1 sounds better if you are further away is that the speaker placement is underneath close to where your knees are.

I like mine lots, and as an early intermediate player I have no intention of upgrading for at least a few years.


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